Testing Ruckman’s Credibility: His Experience at Bob Jones University

At Ruckmanism.org we are not endorsing any particular Bible college or university. We only bring up Bob Jones University (hereafter BJU) in this article because it is at the heart of a test of credibility regarding contradictory statements Ruckman has made regarding his alma mater. Ruckman graduated from BJU in the mid 1950's, and as recently as the late 1970's he was directing some students there. On page 181 of his 1970 Manuscript Evidence book, Ruckman spoke positively of BJU student reports. Referring to his preacher boys in the 1960's, Ruckman on page 242 of his autobiography The Full Cup stated "I sent them to BJU." We will continue to allow Ruckman to speak for himself:

“Ruckman” has just recommended a dozen students to go there [BJU] (1970-1975) (Ruckman, Peter. The Book of Job. 1978, 1980, p. 293)

These works in Springfield, Missouri, and Arlington, Texas, plus the work of Bob Jones, Sr., in Greenville, South Carolina, and the work of Lee Robertson [sic] in Chattanooga are the hotbeds of New Testament Christianity and fundamental evangelism today (1962). They are hated by a purple passion by modernists, liberals, and Catholics. They continue to put out Bible-believing preachers, and some of these preachers have built tremendous churches that are still true to the 1611 AV Bible and the Pre-Millennial coming of Jesus Christ. (Ruckman, Peter. The Book of Revelation. 1970, 1982, p. 98)

I recommended two girls to go to Bob Jones University last year. [1979] I think it’s a good training place for Christian educators. I really do. (Ruckman, Peter. The Historical Relationship of the King James Bible to the Church. CD audio recording, about 4 minutes before the end of track 4)

Now notice the apparent contradictions:

I couldn’t find one Bible-believing teacher on the faculty of BJU the entire five years I was there or thirty years after I left there. (Ruckman, Peter. Ruckman’s Battlefield Notes. 2003, p. 20)

I saw these teachers [at BJU, early 1950’s]—every one of them, there wasn’t one exception in five years—attack one Book. (Ruckman, Peter. 22 Years of the Bible Believer’s Bulletin Vol. 1 “The AV Holy Bible.” 1999, p. 291)

I took the “full load” of the Alexandrian Cult, by the Scholars’ Union, exactly as it was dumped on Curtis Hutson, G. C. Morgan, Shelton Smith, B. H. Carrol, Stewart Custer, Talbot, James White, Pierson, Westcott, Hort, Aland, Metzger, Bruce, W. B. Riley, Fee, MacArthur, Henry Thiessen, Thieme, Farstad, Bob Jones Jr., Bob Jones III, Mike Randall, Doug Kutilek, Harold Willmington, Ed Hindson, Jerry Falwell, and Harold Rawlings. I came out with ONE ACADEMIC STANDARD. It was NOT the “standard” I learned in BJU’s Seminary. As a pupil, I remained unintimidated by the whole crew of stuffed-shirted, egotistical, hair-splitting, destructive critics of the King James Bible. I have been more impressed by a game of ping pong. (Bible Believers' Bulletin Oct. 2005 p. 12)

I did not learn one thing about the Holy Bible in the years I attended Bob Jones University that I had not discovered before I went there as a “babe in Christ,” only having been saved six months. (Bible Believers' Bulletin July 2006, p. 12)

I didn’t know it, but by the time I had been saved six months, I knew more Bible than any professor at Bob Jones University. (Ruckman, Peter. Personal Testimony of Dr. Peter S. Ruckman. Pensacola, FL: Bible Baptist Bookstore, n.d., CD audio recording, 1992, about 5 minute mark of track 2)

I had been at BJU one year before I saw which way the faculty was going. I have seen their kinds in trash heaps from Manila to New York, and from Tokyo to Miami. They were smooth, slick, professional con men who believed in their beliefs. (22 Years of the Bible Believer’s Bulletin Vol. 1 “The AV Holy Bible” 1999, p. 280)

I spent five school years at BJU earning their two highest educational degrees with a grade average of well over 90. I wasn’t taught one thing there by the head of the Ministerial Association except an interdenominational, non-doctrinal belief in Christian unity on the grounds of the five fundamentals taught in the Roman Catholic church. (Ruckman, Peter. Bible Believers’ Bulletin. Nov. 1990, p. 17)

As you read the following quote keep in mind that Dr. Bob Jones Sr., to whom he refers, died in 1968:

With the death of “old man Bob,” the school quietly and unobservedly “sequed” (moved from one camera shot to another) from a Bible believing school which produced evangelists to a Bible correcting “hot house” for upper-middle-class “kiddies.” (Bible Believers' Bulletin Jan. 2006, p. 1)

The above apparent contradictions raise the following questions:

  • If Ruckman noticed within one year of his studies there that BJU professors were "professional con men" (as he affirmed) why did he stay another four years? Why did he remain for a second degree?
  • If Ruckman did not learn anything about the Bible beyond what he learned in the previous 6 months before enrolling (as he affirmed), why did he remain there and recommend some students to go there, especially when he portrayed BJU as continually getting worse?
  • If every professor without exception attacked the KJV while he was there and it kept getting worse (as he affirmed), why did Ruckman state in 1970 that BJU was among the schools turning out Bible-believing preachers?



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5 Responses to Testing Ruckman’s Credibility: His Experience at Bob Jones University

  1. Bob says:

    I have seen this issue from all sides for over 37 years, and find myself for years now alligned with the Bible For Today, D. A. Waite, view of rejecting all the new versions, due to their Westcott/Hort influence, etc.  I loved many zingers Ruckman came up with, but he goes too far on preservation.  Bob Jones, which has put out great preachers for years, to great benefit and promotion of fundamentalism in the world, is wron on the versions/manuscript issues.  In my own church most don't even know the issues and avoid the topic, some say wisely.  I defend the KJV at every opportunity, and wear it on my sleeve, pretty much.   In Christ, Robert L. Scofield

  2. Strict & Particular Baptist Radio says:

    If I may make one statement if brother Webmaster would be gracious, it would be this. I was a lazy student who graduated with an inflated GPA because teachers both liked me as well as were mandated to pass all students. In almost a decade of study since the Lord awaked me on nearly ever subject under the sun, I quickly realized as The Preacher said it is folly to be over much righteous as well as that not all things are profitable learning. Ruckman's Anti-Intellectual Manifesto was dedicated to lambasting higher learning, yet Ruckman also boasted of his scholastic achievements. If higher learning is wrong, why did Ruckman as this page documents, make a great swelling of his in excess of 130 books littered with advanced revelations superior to the studies of the apostate, corrupt Christian academia if not designed to be a kind of counter-academia.

    • Robert Slayman says:

      You seem to be confused why Dr Ruckman would recommend  somebody there when he talked negatively about it. He would recommend people go there for other reasons; not programs in theology or Bible classes,but such as teaching degree or arts etc. 

      Robert Slayman 

      • Webmaster says:

        Even Ruckman recommending BJU only for certain category of students would still be highly inconsistent considering the viciousness of his conclusions and how he later portrayed his experience with every single teacher there. So no, I’m not the one who is confused. You are providing an illogical argument in your failed attempt to defend the indefensible and skipped two of the questions that deserve an answer if you consider Ruckman to have an ounce of credibility left. We know who is confused.

        • Nate Beck says:

          I myself always thought Dr. Ruckman was inconsistent in condemning Bob Jones University and recommending it at the same time. I think it might be because he had a friendship with Bob Jones Sr. Anyway, I myself, if I were in the same position that Ruckman was, would NEVER have recommended a place like BJU, regardless of who I knew that worked there. I wouldn't recommend any Christian college or university that openly criticized the King James Bible, not now, not ever. I've found that in some cases, there are some Christians who are more loyal to the King James Bible than Dr. Ruckman even was! 

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