A recent Dallas Theological Seminary alumni news carried an interview with Dr. Wallace about the debate. It's a great insight into how Dr. Wallace felt the debate went, what he thought both side's best and worst arguments were, and the response he got from attendees. One question caught my eye:
In your interaction with scholars outside of evangelicalism, does it ever surprise you that someone can spend so much time in Scripture, but miss its message?What an interesting comment. How thankful I am for professors, teachers, and parents who discussed and allowed questions. How discouraged I am by those who haven't!
It did for years, but not any more. I have made it a goal of mine to try to determine why such scholars can end up like this. I was initially surprised to learn that almost all liberal scholars were at one time evangelical. Harold Hoehner once quipped, "If it weren't for evangelicals, there'd be no liberals!" One of the things that drives people into liberalism is when their evangelical professors in college or seminary refuse to discuss the tough questions that non-Christians are raising. This creates a sense that evangelical scholars dont' have the answers. But we should never be afraid to explore, to ask tough questions, to pursue truth at all costs.