Alpha & Omega Ministries Apologetics Blog
Mother's Day is Coming
04/29/2005 - James WhiteI confess, I had to look it up just to make sure I wasn't going to blow it this coming weekend. Don't panic completely, it's the 8th. So, going to send flowers again? My friends over at Solid Ground sent out a really counter-cultural idea. Hey, Mom can read! Yes indeedy, and if you are blessed, like I, with a mother who likewise is a Christian, how about a classic work for her? OK, I admit "Jabez Burns" is a name that is a bit tough in light of recent misuses of the name "Jabez," but don't let that stop you. Worried about post-modern fluffy stuff? Nope, not here. Four classic works...that last a lot longer than flowers!
A Quiz : Updated with Answer
04/27/2005 - James WhiteWho wrote the following?
"...unconditional election of individuals to eternal life was not taught by the Apostles. God did elect or predestinate, that all those who would be saved, should be saved in Christ Jesus, and through obedience to the Gospel...."Was it:
1) Dave Hunt
2) Adrian Rogers
3) Benedict XVI
4) Joseph Smith, Jr.
5) Billy Graham
You know what is sad? Any one of those listed could have said it. Obviously, Dave Hunt has said that, but just not in that exact form. The answer is 4, Joseph Smith Jr., the founder of Mormonism. I just finished reading Another Jesus?, the new Eerdmans publication by BYU professor Robert Millet. Yes, you read that correctly. It is a full-blown, no-holds-barred apologetic for Mormonism, very much like what you would pick up at your local LDS bookstore, except now you don't have to go there. You can get it from Eerdmans at your local "Christian" bookstore. The citation above is included by Millet (he is open in saying Mormons are much more favorable to Arminianism than Calvinism--which really goes without saying). More on this soon. Yes, the world has gone nuts.
A Few Quick Notes
04/23/2005 - James WhiteBack from Oklahoma City. Saw the memorial downtown and was quite moved! Very, very well planned and laid out. The museum was very well made, too. Can't believe that was a full decade ago now. My how the world has changed.
I may hold off commenting more on the Wilkin debate till the DL on Tuesday. It is just hard to describe. Maybe some of the folks who were there will call in and share their views. The number of straw men that were left smoldering in the room almost set a new record. What was truly amazing is that while I briefly quoted, directly, with citation of page numbers, from Wilkin's book, he chose to quote snippets from debates, or snippets from the web, but not from my published, formal works! As a result, he questioned my understanding and commitment to the doctrine of imputation, if you can possibly believe that! Since Dr. Wilkin chose to go after me, as an individual theologian, it would have been nice if he had actually bothered to read one, maybe two, of my published works? Simple honesty, let alone respect for the audience, would seem to demand that. I do intend to go over his accusation of "eisegesis" at John 6:44---the facts are so easily documentable that it is he who is engaging in it. But we will leave that for the DL.
Finally, I hope to comment soon on this article. It is truly amazing to me that a United States Senator would be so crass, and so out of line, as to do what Salazar has done. But it sure does make one think---if this is one of the 100 most powerful men in our nation, and he has power over "law" (since the Constitution is really an irrelevant document any longer, thanks to the run-away judiciary and their willing accomplices in the Congress), and he considers the theological conclusion that Rome is a false church something to "repudiate," how long till such truth-speak is defined as hate-speech by these same men?
And finally, Dave Armstrong saw my note on Mary stains, and has fulfilled my wildest dreams by telling his fellow Catholics to get a grip (a little paraphrase there). Thank you Mr. Armstrong. Now, if you could be so kind as to go down to Chicago and try that out in front of all those folks lighting candles, I'd like to see their reaction. Or, how about cleaning the stain off the wall while explaining that? Yes, that would be interesting. But maybe Armstrong will comment on this amazing comment cited by Jimmy Akin about the same "stains"?
"You probably caught that 'Our Lady of the Underpass' story. I admit I tend to roll my eyes when people see the Blessed Virgin in pieces of toast and parking garage walls. However, lately I've been smiling at the idea of the Child Jesus scribbling pictures of Mommy all over -- just because he can, you know?"Um...yeah, wow. OK.
Great Interview with Os Guinness on BAM / John Owen Speaks / You the Reader
04/20/2005 - James WhiteI only caught the very first portion, but I really enjoyed what Os Guinness had to say on The Bible Answer Man broadcast today. At one point he said, "Modern evangelicals have traded sola scriptura for sola cultura." Bravo! I hear he will be back on tomorrow. Here's some info.
Next, Richard Barcellos sent me a John Owen quote that is appropriate for today. It is from Owen's commentary on Hebrews 8:6:
And as to what concerns ourselves at present, we are taught by that means, that it is our duty and our safety to consent universally and absolutely in the ministry of Jesus Christ. That which he was so designed to, in the infinite wisdom and grace of God; that which he was so furnished for the discharge of by the communication of the Spirit to him in all fullness; that which all other priesthoods were removed to make way for, must needs be sufficient and effectual for all the ends to which it is designed. It may be said, "This is that which all men, all who are called Christians do fully consent in the ministry of Jesus Christ." But if it be so, why do we hear the bleating of another sort of cattle? What mean those other priests, and reiterated sacrifices, which make up the worship of the church of Rome? If they rest in the ministry of Christ, why do they appoint one of their own to do the same things that he has done, namely, to offer sacrifice to God?Finally, I really love this passage: ...
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Luther's Never Documented Saying
04/18/2005 - James WhiteYears ago I was listening to a tape of someone lecturing on Luther, and he gave a quote that I copied down. He did not give a reference, and I don't even remember who it was. But the quote went like this:
If I profess with the loudest voice and clearest expression every portion of the truth of God except precisely that little point which the world and the devil are at that moment attacking, I am not confessing Christ however boldly I may be professing Christ. Where the battle rages, there the loyalty of the soldier is proved, and to be steady on all the battlefield besides, is mere flight and disgrace, if he flinches at that point.I decided to see if I could find a real source for the quote, since I have Luther's works in my Libronics library. Ironically, I only found two other folks citing the same words--without attribution. So, I can't prove Luther said those words (anyone want to bet one of our readers will turn it up, if it is genuine?), but whoever said them was right. A great thought.
To Christopher MacDonald: You Win the Award
04/17/2005 - James WhiteWhat award? The "New Lows in Nastiness for a Self-Proclaimed Christian" Award. Congratulations! Mr. MacDonald, evidently, has been imbibing in the Boar's Head Tavern so much that not only has he developed a very foul mouth, but his memory has been shot as well. I was given this link this evening---BE WARNED. Mr. MacDonald likes profanity (notice how regular that is these days amongst people who call themselves Christians, especially of the ecumenical/post-modern sort? I've been cussed out many times, but mainly by Roman Catholics, many of whom like "salty" language. But it's getting to be pretty normal for those who seem to drink a lot). Scarey thing, looking at his blog, he identifies himself as a former pastor. Former. Anyway, I'm given this link tonight and as I'm reading this distilled hatred I'm trying to think back to what on earth he's talking about. And then I remembered, and did some digging around. This fellow wrote a hit-piece on Steve Camp back in early 2003, and I had written to him privately to inquire as to his purposes. His initial reply to my entire e-mail was as follows:
I am glad you enjoy Steve's music....
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A Note to Eric Rogers
04/16/2005 - James WhiteDear Eric:
Just a quick response to your kind note you posted over the the Boar's Head Tavern. I respond mainly because it continues to amaze me not only how folks in that Tavern behave, but also why they seem so dead set against reading words in their native context, and taking every possible response offered in the worst possible light. You opined,
This guy's about half a step away from "Bible-thumpin' fundamentalism," right down to his view about the RCC (according to some Plymouth Brethren I know, Jews are saved, and RC's are damned). If I ever respected James White for any reason, I've lost every bit of it. I was so angry last night I could hardly talk to my girlfriend without flipping out over his portentious, conceited, tactles, loveless response to Michael's essay....
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An Old Debate Between Myself and Doug Wilson
04/16/2005 - James WhiteMany of you were not familiar with A&O when this written debate took place. I thought I'd link to it for our newer readers. Here is a "Disputatio" between myself and Doug Wilson on the so-called "Ecclesiastical Text" issue.
OK, Someone Should Have Warned Me
04/15/2005 - James WhiteOK, I made a mistake. I was completely unaware Mr. Spencer is a ticking emotional time-bomb, waiting for any slight motion to set him off. I would have avoided him like the plague if someone had just said, "Yeah, he's taken shots at you by name on important topics, but please, realize, if you respond, even if you do so in truth, fairly, and accurately, responding directly to his own words, he will slander you, attack your character, and spread untruths about you till the cows come home." But no one did, so I tried to respond in such a fashion as to focus upon the real issues, as I have done all along. And what do I now find? Read it for yourself:
Why close IM?"I know how he does this." Does what? And to insinuate that I have the slightest interest in his school is one of the most absurd things I've seen in a very long time. OK, lesson learned. Don't invest another 2 hours of your life seeking to respond to digital monastics. They aren't there to listen, just to talk.
IM is going to be closed till this storm passes. I know what I'm doing. Trust me folks.
I will not have the IM comment threads turned into a James White debate. I know how he does this. It can destroy my audience. People don't want to read the comment threads that will result from this.
I don't want White into my archives right now. I'll open again shortly when he's moved on to something else and when I have prepared my boss and co-workers for the fact that White's supporters may start harassing the school.
I know what my next post is going to be and where I am going. It's my ship and I am still captain. I just engaged the cloaking device :-)
Woops, the Tax Man Cometh
04/14/2005 - James WhiteJust got a note from the folks at Solid Ground, who have been putting out all these great books of late, saying they are holding a quick, and I do mean quick, one day sale to try to generate some income to help cover a 2004 tax bill (golly, tomorrow is April 15th!). Some pretty deep reductions on certain books, so I thought if you've enjoyed some of the works I've recommended lately from them, you might want to take advantage and help out all at the same time. Here's their site.
Spurgeon on Opposition
04/11/2005 - James WhiteWhen preaching in the Tabernacle in 1884, Spurgeon reflected on facing opposition in ministry (Oakley tip to SDC):
A company of mean-spirited, wicked men, who are no bigger than bees, mentally or spiritually, can get together, and sting a good man in a thousand places, till he is well-nigh maddened by their scorn, their ridicule, their slander, and their misrepresentation. Their very littleness gives them the power to wound with impunity. Such has been the experience of some of us, especially in days now happily past. For one, I can say, I grew inured to falsehood and spite. The stings at last caused me no more pain than if I had been made of iron; but at first they were galling enough. Do not be surprised, dear friends, if you have the same experience; and if it comes, count it no strange thing, for in this way the saints have been treated in all time. Thank God, the wounds are not fatal, nor of long continuance! Time brings ease, and use creates hardihood. No real harm has come to any of us who have run the gauntlet of abuse; not, even a bruise remains....
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And Now a Word from our Sponsors
04/06/2005 - James WhiteWe are greatly thankful for the huge outpouring of interest in the sermon we posted recently and in our effort to urge all believers, in light of the events in Rome, to resist the urge to compromise the gospel at this important time. Now, if you have read this blog for any period of time at all, you know I don't talk about money and fund raising. It isn't in my nature. I don't even do what I should in that area (i.e., let folks know the basics). But I just wanted to make note of the fact that just posting that one sermon on our Real Audio server has required us to upgrade that server, and that isn't free. We don't do the "The World is Ending! Send in your money today or the sky falls!" thing. I just felt it proper to let our readers know that this is a small ministry. No, a tiny ministry, but with a big outreach. We don't have some big supporter or group of rich folks underwriting this work. We do what we do through the book ministry, the mp3's and CD's, and through the gifts of regular folks who stand with us. And that group is small, let me assure you. So, if you have first and foremost supported your local church to which you are responsible (Hebrews 13:17), and you wish to support the Lord's work in apologetics, and have benefitted from aomin.org, there's a little "Support Us" button down there to the left. We'll be good stewards of what you entrust to us. You can always count on one thing: we will not compromise.