Our Heritage, Our Foundational Assumptions
Baylor's Christian heritage and identity shape and direct the University's entire mission. Assumptions grounded in faith will make our academic programs both distinctive and excellent, bring greater visibility to the University, and provide a framework for integrating our academic programs, our scholarship and learning, and our community relationships.
The foremost of these are:
- that human decisions should be guided by God as His will and nature are revealed in the crucified and risen Jesus Christ;
- that all truth is open to inquiry, though many truths will elude us and others may be accessible only through divine revelation;
- that human life has a meaning and a purpose that is not simply a matter of human choice;
- that we have a fallen nature that needs both healing and direction;
- that we are a created part of nature but have been given responsibility as stewards – made in the image of God – for its care and management;
- that we find the highest order of personal fulfillment in working constructively for the betterment of others, and that we have an obligation to do so;
- that we need to be active, regularly worshiping members of the body of Christ as a context of our spiritual growth, as a source of encouragement, and as a partnership in the work of God's kingdom;
- that human beings flourish best in a functional and beautiful physical environment and among colleagues who respect, love, forgive, and support one another; and
- that a university can be such a physical and social environment.
Because the Church, the one truly democratic and multicultural community, is not identical with any denomination, we believe that Baylor will serve best, recruit more effectively, and both preserve and enrich its Baptist identity more profoundly, if we draw our faculty, staff, and students from the full range of Christian traditions.
Believing that the Spirit of God continues to work in the Church and in the world, we also assume that the hard-won methods of the academic disciplines, both ancient and modern, such as logic and mathematics, conceptual analysis, literary criticism, historiography, and the various methodologies of the sciences are among the particular means by which we will accomplish our part in the larger task of seeking God's kingdom.