Friday, September 24, 2010

More muddled ‘logic’ from TurretinFan

Yesterday, TurretinFan (hereafter TF) took aim at an old comment posted by Bryan Cross and missed the implications by a 'country mile.' The following is the comment from Cross that TF cited:

In the first century, no one needed to confess that Christ is homoousious with the Father. But after the fourth century, to deny the homoousious is to fall into [at least material] heresy. (LINK)

TF responded with:

This is dead wrong and gets things exactly backwards. It has always been heresy to deny the Son's divinity. Arius was a heretic before Nicaea, and the Nicene council simply affirmed (with respect to Arianism) what was always the teaching of the Bible.

The church does not make up orthodoxy. When the church does its job correctly, it merely recognizes the truth that was already once delivered to the saints. There was no new delivery in the fourth century or any of the succeeding centuries.

Of course, Romanists have to put the cart before the horse, because they've added to the gospel. If they tried to claim that it was always heresy to deny the Immaculate Conception, they'd have to treat Augustine, and the Augustinians down through Aquinas as heretics. So, they place the cart before the horse and say that it is only heresy to deny the Immaculate Conception after "the Church" makes that doctrine part of the gospel.

The absurd result is the one that Bryan Cross has illustrated above, where the Son's divinity becomes something that it was ok to deny before 325 A.D.

Amazing - absolutely amazing. (LINK)

Historical theology for most Reformed folk does not really start until the early 16th century; those who do attempt to interact with the pre-Nicene Church Fathers almost always read them anachronistically. Honest students of patrology acknowledge that the pre-Nicene CFs were subordinationists (see these threads: http://articulifidei.blogspot.com/2008/06/trinity-and-development-of-doctrine.html; http://articulifidei.blogspot.com/2008/10/subordinationism-and-pre-nicene-church.html; http://articulifidei.blogspot.com/2008/10/subordinationism-in-st-irenaeus.html; http://articulifidei.blogspot.com/2009/01/subordinationism-in-novatian.html; http://articulifidei.blogspot.com/2009/02/kephas-recent-scholar-of-choice-weighs.html; http://articulifidei.blogspot.com/2009/02/subordinationism-and-ante-nicene-church.html; http://articulifidei.blogspot.com/2009/03/some-subordinationism-in-justin.html; http://articulifidei.blogspot.com/2009/06/one-god-of-novatian.html), which means that if one were to follow TF's 'logic', they were all heretics!

Even worse, if one applies TF's logic to the soteriology of the Church Fathers prior to Luther, what CF would stand untouched with the charge of heresy, if judged by "the gospel" espoused by TF—i.e. justification by faith alone, through the imputation of Christ's righteousness alone? (See the following two threads for an introduction into this issue: http://articulifidei.blogspot.com/2008/09/development-justificationsoteriology.html; http://articulifidei.blogspot.com/2008/04/evangelical-critique-of-rc-sprouls.html)

To borrow a phrase from TF: Amazing - absolutely amazing. But then, I have come to expect such 'logic' from the pen of one who once wrote that Thomas Aquinas held to sola scriptura! (See THIS THREAD for the link to TFs amazing assertion.)


Grace and peace,

David

22 comments:

Rory said...

Oh Dave. So you haven't learned yet that Aquinas taught sola scriptura? How long will you "kick against the pricks"? I suppose you also don't know about Tertullian's conversion to the Reformed Baptists and Origen's Missouri Synod Lutheran affiliations?

With so much mutual amazement, it seems like folly to try to reason with each other. I can understand a point in speaking OF them, but not TO them. It has always been necessary to expose the errors of heretics and this requires speaking of them sometimes. I am not telling you to discontinue your activities.

If I could ever see the slightest benefit in trying to explain my position to those Reformed guys, I would. But I have never succeeded in being anything but despised for it. They truly seem to think non-Reformed Christians are liars and are only doing what we do because we know they are right but we hate them and hate God. Or we are just amazing, amazingly stupid. The least noxious result I have ever seen achieved in dialogue with Reformed people on the Internet is when Ken pronounces something contrary to Reformed teaching to be merely "goofy".

Rory

Tap said...

Rory, i don't think i could have said that better myself.

Rory said...

Thanks Tap.

Somewhere along the line there has to be an application of St. Paul's rule to Titus.

"It is a faithful saying: and these things I will have thee affirm constantly: that they, who believe in God, may be careful to excel in good works. These things are good and profitable unto men. But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law. For they are unprofitable and vain. A man that is a heretic, after the first and second admonition, avoid: Knowing that he, that is such an one, is subverted, and sinneth, being condemned by his own judgment."

I think our era of internet and a corresponding emphasis on the value of mere ecumencial dialogue with no view to conversion has given rise to the illusion that there is profit and value in mere discussion. I do not take that for granted. I think it can steal us away from much better things and I am trying to make up for lost things I permitted to be stolen.

I think God's law tells me to seek to avoid non-Catholics who have no perceptible interest in converting but seem to want to talk about my religion.

thegrandverbalizer19 said...

With the name of God, Peace be unto those who follow the guidance from their Lord.

You know what I find telling David? I find it telling that when ever you write an article that shows that there maybe some iota of truth to Islam or Bahai' than my goodness a hornest nest is stirred.

They come from far and wide, land sea and air.

But when you write a blog entry like 'More muddled 'logic' from TurretinFan or 'Ken Temple and Robert Reymond' these blog post become like ghost towns.

I think this is very telling about the level of sincerity a person has in truly engaging the issues and the level of consistency involved in redressing your very good points.

David Waltz said...

Hi Rory,

Thanks much for taking the time to share your thoughts, as always, you have given us all much to ponder.

The verses you provided from Paul’s epistle to Titus seem quite stern, but I do wonder if the following admonition from Peter tempers Paul’s thoughts:

“But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:” (1 Peter 3:15 - KJV)


Grace and peace,

David

David Waltz said...

Hello GV19,

Some interesting observations for sure! I have never really spent much time reflecting on the reason/s why some of my posts produce more comments than others, but now that you have raised the issue, I feel somewhat compelled to seriously contemplate your thoughts on this matter.

BTW, thanks to your recent post “Silence is Golden?”, I listened to the debate between Zawadi and Qureshi, “Is the Quran Perfectly Preserved” (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KWK1xv0Bt-A); hope to type up a post on this issue in the near future.


Grace and peace,

David

thegrandverbalizer19 said...

With the name of God, Peace be unto those who follow the guidance from their Lord.

David I hope that no offense was taken as I didn't mean to say your blog post had no value or interest- they are invaluable and of immense interest to me. I just find it curious that your interloctators are quite selective on which issues they choose to engage you in.

"Please David don't go the way of Islam" if you want my own opinion.

In fact I personally regard you as a Muslim if you believe Muhammed could be a messenger and you have a unitarian view of the creator.

The fact that you may differ with me about details on the crucifiction doesn't cause me to loose sleep at night. Imam Al Ghazali wrote a great treatise now translated into English "The Boundaries of Theological Tolerance" in Islam and he showed how the early 'ulemah were much more respectful about divergent views than is the norm today-due to the spread of Wahabbism and their view that Allah is a jism (body) that occupies space.

The only issue that I see that the Orthodox Sunni Islam would take issue with you about David would be the idea of Muhammed (saw) being the seal of the prophets.

I think the fact that Bahai'ism tends to be very universal and inclusive is definitely attractive to allot of people.

Just like in the Berkley area allot of intellectuals become Buddhist. I don't try to psychoanalyze cause I think it demeans people and their personal journey.

I would say that allot of the turn of from Islam is now doubt due to the 11 o'clock news and no doubt from Muslims themselves.

Rory said...

Hey Dave.

Sts. Peter and Paul seemed to be talking about two different kinds of individual. If anyone can be characterized "asking a reason for the hope that is in you", I am always in favor of a reply.

It seems to me that we have a positive command to be always be prepared to speak to those of good will and a negative command to refrain from wasting our time with people of bad will. But the context of Titus is a missionary who is on the field. I do not mean to imply that the internet must always be considered as a mission field. I am sure an exception can be made where one might make a "hobby" out of making oneself available for unfruitful discussions that usually end in disdain and insult from Reformed Baptists and Presbyterians.

thegrandverbalizer19 said...

The reason we are enemies of the freemasons is the fact that they destroy religion, and the great faith traditons in a very beautiful albeit devlish fashion.

They destroy religion by saying all religions are the same.This is a process of mutual cancelation. This cheapeans the great faith traditions, because if they are all the same none of them have any meaning. Perenialist are kind hearted souls in malevolent hands.

Imagine if I said to my wife,"You are just like every other woman" -she wouldn't feel special or unique.

I do believe we should all earnestly contend for our faith in a way that is respectful and dignified.

But in all sincerity and honesty there has never been a faith that has been so maligned and intentionally distorted as Islam has been by those who claim to follow Christ.

thegrandverbalizer19 said...

David you said,

"Preserved” (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KWK1xv0Bt-A); hope to type up a post on this issue in the near future."

I am glad you did watch it. I hope that you also go and re-watch (if haven't already) the debate between Abdullah Kunde and Samuel Green (a contributor for Answering-Islam). http://thegrandverbalizer19.blogspot.com/2010/01/debatethe-historical-preservation-of.html

Another one is available here: http://thegrandverbalizer19.blogspot.com/2010/09/debate-divine-origins-authority-and.html < The interesting thing about this debate is that the gentleman debating is none other than John Gilchrist. He is the man that basically all the modern day apologist are dependent upon.

Notice his demeanor in the debate is very Christian, very respectful and he has tact! That is because he is a man of knowledge.

Not like these Johnny Come Lately's who never do their own home work.

What I find interesting as an observation the more knowledge the Christian has about the Qur'an (Ahruf and Qir'at) -John Gilchrist, Samuel Green, and Jay Smith the more calm their disposition and respectful in debate. Of course as a Muslim i'm going to say this but I think it's because these men have to be taken a back by the evidence that is there that the Qur'an has been preserved.

thegrandverbalizer19 said...

Lastly, and sorry to spam up the comment section.

There are some very amazing and peculuiar things about the Qur'an. For example people do not reflect upon how miraculous and amazing the following verse is from the Qur'an.

[3:7] He sent down to you this scripture, containing straightforward verses - which constitute the essence of the scripture - as well as multiple-meaning or allegorical verses. Those who harbor doubts in their hearts will pursue the multiple-meaning verses to create confusion, and to extricate a certain meaning. None knows the true meaning thereof except GOD and those well founded in knowledge. They say, "We believe in this - all of it comes from our Lord." Only those who possess intelligence will take heed.

The Qur'an anticipates the great theological conundrum of literalism! Through and through the Qur'an is a book that is conscious of itself, it is well connected with all it's other parts.


Do they not then consider the Quran carefully? Had it been from other than Allah, they would surely have found therein much contradictions (Holy Qur'an 4:82)

What would be the purpose of the prophet Muhammed (saw) saying something like that? Especially to a people in the Arabian penisula who had little to no knowledge of previous revelations, allot of whom could not even read or write Arabic.

Whatever a Verse (revelation) do We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, We bring a better one or similar to it. Know you not that Allah is able to do all things (Holy Qur'an 2:106) Now think about this. Christiains like to talk about what they call 'the principle of embarassment'.

If I was writing a book and was seen as the source of it's revelation why on earth would I want to say "Hey by the way some times I would forget parts of it!"

Think about what this could say about God and his Messenger.

But this was given to show that it is Allah, and only Allah who is in charge, to be sought after, and is in control of all afairs.

thegrandverbalizer19 said...

The Qur'an was revealed upon 7 ahruf (rulings) The Qur'an can have different qir'at (ways of expressing the revelation or ways of conveying the message) based upon any of those 7 rulings. This can result in a multitude of qir'aat some say 10, 14 or even many more.

Uthman (r.a) thought he was in the right to keep people from fighting and arguing about who's recitation was better than the others (good old fashion tribalism)-which the Muslims ending up fighting about any way (Ali-vs Muaviya saga).

However, the 12 disciples maybe superior to us as Christians, but to one another they are peers!

So many of the Sahabah prophet Muhammed (saw) companion basically thought "well who do you think you are Uthman you maybe the khilafa and all but the Prophet (saw) specifically said I could recite it in this manner and it was acceptable."

Now James White needs to re-think his high flying claims about 'we don't have a Christian Uthman' nonsense. The Qur'an was transmitted both written and ORALLY.

So how did Uthman plan to stop the recitation of the Qur'an in different ways if it was also being transmitted orally. That is something these people don't bother to think about.

You can read more about that here: http://uiforum.uaeforum.org/showthread.php?7528-What-exactly-are-the-different-Qiraat

Grace and Peace be unto you David.

thegrandverbalizer19 said...

sorry one last thing....just a reminder...remember that James White was not forth coming about his material in his debate with Shabir Ally and we discussed this with Ken a few months back.

Finally it was traceable to an orientalist material and when dealt with the issue fo the Shi'a and Sunni supposedly haven't different Qur'an I believe the conclusion we came to is that this is not the case at all.

So now Nabeel Qureshi is making some tall claims as well without giving his source material.

All the while Mr. "I Got My Doctorate From A Cracker Jack Box" complains about scholarship.

By Allah some times I think he envisions himself as the Pope of all that is Protestant!

David Waltz said...

Hello again Rory,

Thanks for responding to my musings. I agree with you that Peter and Paul are probably talking about two different types of individuals, and/or situations. I lean to the view that Paul most likely has the 'house church' setting in mind, and does not want heretics disrupting the local church gatherings.

Before leaving, wanted to ask if you have heard from Wilfred yet; I hear more rains on the way to the troubled Midwest...


Grace and peace,

David

David Waltz said...

Hello again GV19,

Thanks much for taking the time to respond—wow, you were busy last night—you wrote:

>> David I hope that no offense was taken as I didn't mean to say your blog post had no value or interest- they are invaluable and of immense interest to me. I just find it curious that your interloctators are quite selective on which issues they choose to engage you in.>>

Me: No offense at all GV. My blog has never been (at least to me) about numbers. What I write, and I know that this is somewhat selfish, reflects my current studies, as well as my explorations into cyberspace. Yet with that said, I am deeply moved that you (and a few others) find some value in my personal musings.

>> In fact I personally regard you as a Muslim if you believe Muhammed could be a messenger and you have a unitarian view of the creator.>>

Me: I merely affirm what the Bible and the Qur'an so clearly state: there is but ONE GOD! And yes, despite the protests from many of my Christian brothers, I am open to the possibility that Muhammad is a rasul from God, and I am studying and praying that God will lead me to the truth of this important issue.

>> The fact that you may differ with me about details on the crucifiction doesn't cause me to loose sleep at night. Imam Al Ghazali wrote a great treatise now translated into English "The Boundaries of Theological Tolerance" in Islam and he showed how the early 'ulemah were much more respectful about divergent views than is the norm today-due to the spread of Wahabbism and their view that Allah is a jism (body) that occupies space.>>

Me: I have a number of books by Ghazali, my favorite being The Ninety-nine Beautiful Names of God; but, I do not own the book you mentioned—later today, I will look into obtaining a copy.

>> The only issue that I see that the Orthodox Sunni Islam would take issue with you about David would be the idea of Muhammed (saw) being the seal of the prophets.>>

Me: One of these days (hopefully sooner than later), I would love to get into a serious discussion with you on the issue of succession within Islam after the death of Muhammad. IMHO, this issue of succession carries with it some very important implications.

>> I think the fact that Bahai'ism tends to be very universal and inclusive is definitely attractive to allot of people.>>

Me: I think this is a very common misunderstanding of the Bahai Faith; though the official writings of the BF teach that Krishna, Buddha and Zoroaster were rasuls, only the Bible, the Qur'an and the writings of the Bab are considered are trustworthy in there transmission, the sacred texts of the other religions have been severely corrupted, and are not trustworthy. Further, though the Bible, the Qur'an and the writings of the Bab have been faithfully transmitted, the correct interpretation of those sacred writings has not.

>> Lastly, and sorry to spam up the comment section.>>

Me: I do not consider you postings to be spam at all; and though I disagree with you on reliability of the transmission of the text of the Bible, I appreciate the fact that you and I (and others) can openly discuss our current differences—I sincerely believe that all of us have much to learn from each other, and will learn if we remain humble.

As for the 'humble' "Dr." James White, there a few interesting quotes from his pen that plan to include in my upcoming post on the preservation of the Qur'an (the Lord willing).


May God bless,

David

P.S. Thanks much for the links to the debates!

Lvka said...

Waltz,

again, for the n-th time:

what does sub-ordination have to do with homo-ousios? Both sides agreed on the former. You can honestly think of no way in which the former does not include the latter? -- Do children listen to their parents? Does this then make them sub-human?

Rory said...

Hey Dave,

Thanks for inquiring about Wilfie. I have never seen the grounds but I know the town, Winona, is on the Minnesota border with Wisconsin. That has to mean that the river is the boundary and pretty close. But he hasn't left yet. Thursday by train. He arrives on Saturday. I think we would have heard if there was any danger about flooding, as he called just this week to make certain of arrangements for meeting him at the station.

Rory

David Waltz said...

Hi Lvka,

Thanks for responding; you wrote:

>>Waltz,

again, for the n-th time:

what does sub-ordination have to do with homo-ousios?>>

Me: Two important issues are involved: first, the term is not used in the Bible; and second, prior to the introduction of the term at the Nicene council of 325, the term was not used in a positive sense by the Catholic Church Fathers—rather, the term was only mentioned in a negative sense because it was being used in a positive sense by heretics.

>>Both sides agreed on the former.>>

Me: Who are the "both sides", and what exactly did they agree upon?


Grace and peace,

David

David Waltz said...

Hi Rory,

Thanks for the update. I have a 'dumb' question: the October starting date for classes seems a bit late, is it related to 1st year students only?


Grace and peace,

David

Lvka said...

Orthodox and Arians. Subordination.

David Waltz said...

Hello again Lvka,

Thanks for the clarification. I would argue that Arianism did not exist prior to Arius, and that "Orthodox" Trinitarianism did not exist prior to the Nicene creed (325/381). But, that is not to say that both positions did not have important antecedents.


Grace and peace,

David

Lvka said...

Could you perhaps better clarify in what ways the post-Nicaean doctrine differed from the pre-Nicaean one, Christologically speaking?