When someone says, “It’s academic,” they usually mean “It’s no longer practical.”
When seminary is deemed the vehicle through which a person is made able to proclaim the gospel of Christ, the word of God has been “academized” (if you will). In so doing, the purpose of Christ has been subordinated to the purpose of the academic institution (that is, the seminary).
The apostles sat at the feet of the Master. The disciples of Acts through Revelation sat at the feet the apostles. None of them attended seminaries.
The Pharisees and Sadducees had schools, but Jesus would send none of His disciples to them.
Seminaries, precisely because they are education institutions, bring with them all the baggage of academia: degrees, credit hours, tenure, writing and publishing, peer recognition, and so on. This order becomes a new master to replace Christ.
There’s nothing wrong with academic institutions per se. It’s just that Jesus never commanded His kingdom to produce them.
Seminaries are designed to produce religious professionals. And that’s exactly what they do. They are not designed to produce saints. And that’s exactly what they do not do.
Brian LePort over at Near Emmaus
portrays the drift that always occurs, to one degree or another, in seminaries. Regardless of which way, or how quickly, the institution always drifts away from Christ. [Editorial note, October 21, 2015: The link to Brian’s post no longer works because he is no longer maintaining that post on his blog. Sorry.]
A seminary is a worldly structure. It cannot possibly contain the kingdom of Christ. On the contrary, Christ contains it…as Christ contains all the kingdoms of the world (Revelation 11:15).
As churches are passe in the kingdom of God, so also are seminaries.