LEWISBURG — A protest by Bucknell students last year against a commencement speaker who they said lacked credibility because he believed in the Bible, led a local pastor to write a book that would show the “reasonableness” of Christianity.
The speaker these students were protesting, Dr. Ben Carson, is a worldrenowned surgeon and chairman of the Pediatric Neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Medical Center. Carson is especially known for performing successful surgeries separating two pairs of twins, conjoined at the head.
A small group of Bucknell students, said Rubens Ruba, pastor of Lewisburg Alliance Church, appealed to the administration to “uninvite” Carson because he was “unscientific, since he believes in the biblical account of creation, faith and the Bible.”
In his book, Ruba asks and answers, “Can you be smart and be a person of faith?” “A Reasonable Faith,” his first book, was released March 27.
An evangelical Christian, Ruba said he was interested in the debates that followed. First, that a college where pride is taken in “free and open” thinking would completely disregard Christianity as credible.
“Second,” he said, “I am concerned that the students at Bucknell University, as well as the entire community of Lewisburg, would be left without a ‘balanced’ response in favor of Christianity.”
Ruba said the book is not a criticism of Bucknell, and he does not intend to enter into a debate. But he does want to attempt to answer some of the questions that have been circulating.
“The difficulty is that if many of these questions were left unanswered, it would cause many students to have a weakened faith, as well as a disregard for the ‘reasonableness’ of Christianity,” he said.
Ruba began his full-time ministry 25 years ago as youth pastor at First Baptist Church in Danville, where he ministered for five years.
The next 13 years, he served as senior pastor at Calvary Baptist Church in Reading.
He has been the senior pastor at Lewisburg Alliance Church for the past six years.
Ruba and his wife, Beth, of 25 years, live in Lewisburg.
They have two daughters, Abigail and her husband Josh Gable, of Northumberland, and Elizabeth Ruba, who is attending Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va. They also have two “ferocious” dogs: Sadie, a bishon, and Lilly, a poodle.