|Ergun M. Caner|
|Born||Ergun Michael Caner
November 3, 1966
|Occupation||Professor of Theology and Apologist|
|Employer||Arlington Baptist College|
|Religion||Southern Baptist Convention|
|Spouse(s)||Jill Morris (m. 1994)|
Ergun Michael Caner (born November 3, 1966) is a Swedish-American academic, author, and Baptist minister. Caner's mother converted to Islam, and the couple chose to raise Caner in the Islamic faith. He emigrated to the United States at a young age and converted to Christianity in the early 1980s.
Caner is the President of Brewton-Parker College in Mt. Vernon, GA. He previously served as the Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs at Arlington Baptist College and was the former dean of the Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary and Graduate School of Liberty University.
He has authored and co-authored several books, many of which discuss Islam and Christianity. His book Unveiling Islam, co-authored with his brother Emir, sold more than 200,000 copies and has been translated into six languages. It also received a 2003 Gold Medallion Book award by the Evangelical Christian Publisher's Association.
Through the persistent evangelical efforts of a teenage Christian, Caner started attending the Stelzer Road Baptist Church and chose to leave Islam and convert to Christianity. His parents had already divorced at the time, but his father, through court order, had established the continued religion for the boys being Islam.
In 2002 Caner and his brother gained national attention after publishing a book, Unveiling Islam, about the Islamic faith. IslamOnline's Ali Asadullah called it "a diatribe against Muslims and their faith." The book, an insider's look at being raised as a devout Sunni under their father's tutelage, was a commercial success; selling 100,000 copies in a year and winning a Gold Medallion Award.
In the years following the publication of Unveiling Islam Caner became a well-known and popular speaker at evangelical schools and churches. After teaching at Criswell College for two years, Jerry Falwell of Liberty University asked Caner to join the faculty in Lynchburg, Virginia. Caner quickly became a popular professor. In February 2005, Falwell announced that Caner was to be the first former Muslim to become the President and Dean of an evangelical seminary, making Caner head of Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. Caner's leadership at Liberty Seminary and with the faculty he built saw the enrollment triple in a relatively short period of time.
Controversy over veracity of autobiography
In 2010, Christian and Muslim bloggers accused Caner of making up and lying about his life story by citing details that were incongruent with his regularly stated, printed, and often repeated story. On May 10, 2010, Liberty University announced that it would launch a formal inquiry into allegations of discrepancies in the claimed background of Caner, the Dean and President of the Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary and Graduate School. Caner said, "I am thrilled that Liberty University is forming this committee, and I look forward to this entire process coming to a close." On June 25, 2010, Liberty University removed Caner from his position as Dean of the seminary after finding "discrepancies related to the matters such as dates, names and places of residence." Liberty University did decide to retain Caner as a full-time faculty member of the seminary for the 2010–2011 school year.
On September 24, 2010, Caner was the keynote speaker for the Twin City's 12th Annual Community Prayer Breakfast in Bristol, Virginia. When interviewed about the controversy, the chairman of the local prayer breakfast committee said that members were aware of the controversy, but the invitation had been issued before the controversy became apparent. He also noted that the Community Prayer Breakfast does not delve into the backgrounds of their motivational/inspirational speakers. At the meeting, Caner claimed that he and his brother had seen the controversy coming for years. The bloggers were simply "frustrated people in their basements", he said, adding that it would take more than edited videos to take him down.
Caner left LU in June 2011 to become Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs for the Arlington Baptist College. The President of Arlington Baptist College, Dr. Dan Moody, stated that Caner's controversy was in the past and the new Vice President had his full confidence.
Caner filed a lawsuit June 18 2013 in U.S. District Court North Texas District in Fort Worth claiming copyright infringement for reproducing, uploading and maintaining his videos without permission.
The complaint cites Jonathan Autry of Lynchburg, Va., who posted 34 videos of Caner on his YouTube account. YouTube removed the videos after Caner filed a takedown notice pursuant to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
- Caner, Ergun, and Emir Fethi Caner. Unveiling Islam: An Insider's Look at Muslim Life and Beliefs. Updated and Expanded ed. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 2009. ISBN 0-8254-2428-3
- Caner, Emir Fethi, and Ergun Mehmet Caner. More Than a Prophet: an Insider's Response to Muslim Beliefs About Jesus and Christianity. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 2003. ISBN 0-8254-2401-1
- Caner Emir, and Ergun Caner. The Sacred Trust: Sketches of the Southern Baptist Convention Presidents. Nashville, Tenn.: B&H Academic, 2003. ISBN 0-8054-2668-X
- Caner, Ergun Mehmet, and Emir Fethi Caner, eds. The Sacred Desk: Sermons of the Southern Baptist Convention Presidents. Nashville, Tenn.: B&H Publishing Group, 2004. ISBN 0-8054-3059-8
- Caner, Ergun Mehmet, ed. Voices Behind the Veil: the World of Islam through the Eyes of Women. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Kregel Publications, 2004. ISBN 0-8254-2402-X
- Caner, Ergun Mehmet, and Emir Fethi Caner. Christian Jihad: Two Former Muslims Look at the Crusades and Killing in the Name of Christ. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Kregel Publications, 2004. ISBN 0-8254-2403-8
- Brunson, Mac & Caner, Ergun. Why Churches Die: Diagnosing Lethal Poisons in the Body of Christ. Nashville: B&H Books, 2005. ISBN 0-8054-3181-0
- Hoffman, Paul K., and Norman L. Geisler, eds. Why I Am a Christian: Leading Thinkers Explain Why They Believe. Rev. and expanded ed. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books, 2006. ISBN 0-8010-6712-X
- Cabal, Ted, ed. The Apologetics Study Bible: Understand Why You Believe. Nashville, Tennessee: Holman Bible Publishers, 2007. ISBN 1-58640-024-X
- Pollock, Forrest. The Last Sermon I Would Preach If Jesus Were Coming Tomorrow. Encouraging Word, 2007. ISBN 0-615-15940-0
- Hindson, Ed, and Caner, Ergun, general editors. The Popular Encyclopedia of Apologetics. Eugene, Or.: Harvest House Publishers, 2008. ISBN 0-7369-2084-6
- Falwell, Jonathan, general editor. InnovateChurch. Nashville, Tenn.: B&H Books, 2008. ISBN 0-8054-4826-8
- Caner, Ergun Mehmet. Holier Than Thou: When Faith Becomes Toxic. Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2009. ISBN 0-687-65840-3
- Allen, David L., and Steve W Lemke, eds. The Return of Christ: A Premillennial Perspective. Nashville: B&H Academic, 2011. ISBN 1-4336-6972-2
- Southern Baptist Convention
- List of Southern Baptist Convention affiliated people
- World Baptist Fellowship
- Caner, Ergun, and Emir Fethi (2002). Unveiling Islam. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications. ISBN 0-8254-2428-3.
- Caner, Ergun, Emir Caner Unveiling Islam (Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 2002) 17
- Court Order Decision by Ohio Court, June 8, 1978
- "Converts take heat for book about Islam". The Robesonian. 26 July 2002. Retrieved 2 January 2011.
- Breed, Allen G. (21 June 2002). "Former Muslims Stir Anger With Book Assailing Islam; Brothers Who Became Baptists Call Former Faith 'Violent'". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2 January 2011.
- Asadullah, Ali. "Former Muslims Attack Islam in New Book". IslamOnline. Retrieved 2 January 2011.
- Oh, Susie L. (6 June 2003). "Christian Authors Writing Book on Islam". Lakeland Ledger. Retrieved 2 January 2011.
- "2003 Gold Medallion Book Awards Winners". ECPA Christian Book Expo. Retrieved 26 April 2012.
- "Ergun Caner named dean of Liberty Baptist Seminary". Baptist Press. Retrieved 2 January 2011.
- "Seminary Plans to Move to Old TRBC". Liberty University.
- Geisler, Norman. "In Support of Ergun Caner".
- "News & Events – News Article – Liberty University". Liberty.edu. 2010-05-10. Retrieved 2010-12-17.
- "Ergun Caner Out as Seminary Dean". Christianity Today. 2010-02-07. Retrieved 2010-12-17.
- McGee, David "Liberty's Caner to speak at prayer breakfast" Tricities.com 9/19/10
- McGee, David "Caner defends background in Bristol speech" News and Advance 09/25/10
- SBC Today
- Official site of Ergun Caner
- Exposing the fake testimonies of Ergun and Emir Caner
- In Defense of Dr. Ergun Caner, by Norman Geisler
- "Ergun Caner Out as Seminary Dean", from Christianity Today