Alpha & Omega Ministries Apologetics Blog
Paul Williams And the Charge of "Extreme Fundamentalism"
07/22/2012 - James WhiteI am truly disappointed by this, but I am accustomed to it. I hope that it speaks loudly to the Muslims who know better, and know that we have provided a critique that must be answered by the current Islamic apologists. After confirming that he has left the Muslim Debate Initiative (I have no knowledge of why, though I find it ironic that it comes so closely after his debate with Chris Green in which he made a number of easily refutable arguments) he writes,
I will not be debating James White. He is an extreme fundamentalist with no credibility in the wider academic community. Muslims who continue to debate him give him a spurious credibility he does not merit.
Let's examine this for a moment. To my knowledge, Paul Bilal Williams is not a published author. I am unaware of any books he wrote as a Christian, and I am unaware of any books he has written as a Muslim, hence, I don't think he has any of his works used as textbooks in English speaking schools. During his period as a "Christian," to my knowledge, he did not teach any graduate or undergraduate level theology classes, Church history classes, or classes in the introduction of, and exegesis of, the original languages of the Bible. And though he has done a few debates, they have been on a limited variety of topics, as far as I know.
Now, over the years we have seen a long, long line of folks avoid debate challenges from me in this very fashion. And as we have examined the presentations of those folks, we have seen the real reason why they will not put their arguments to the test of public debate. Karl Keating and other Roman Catholic apologists have likewise thrown out the "fundamentalist" card, though, of course, in this case, the term is being used by a man who was once a part of a Baptist Church in London (I have debated there) but who seems to have adopted a new perspective, one that enshrines liberals as the definition of "serious" Christianity. Of course, this, coming from a man who believes Muhammad rode a winged steed to Jerusalem only shows, once again, the fact that Islam's defenders live in two different worlds. They simply do not see how they are utterly inconsistent on these matters.
What does it mean to be a "radical fundamentalist" I wonder? I know what the Fundamentals were, a century ago, and outside of the eschatological aspects specifically attached to a premillenial view of the end times, I guess I am a Fundamentalist. I believe in God, in revelation, in the Bible, in the Incarnation, in the Virgin Birth, in the resurrection of Christ, and in His promised return to earth. So Paul Williams won't debate...Christians? I think Chris Green believes all those things, too. Why did he debate him, I wonder? And doesn't Paul Williams believe in God, revelation, the Qur'an, the Virgin Birth, and Muhammad as the final prophet? In fact, doesn't he believe Jesus formed birds from clay and breathed on them and turned them into living birds, an extra-biblical story found in gnostic writings that ended up in the Qur'an? Does that make him a "fundamentalist" as well, I wonder? Would any of the "critical scholars" he likes to quote believe Jesus did that? There's that nasty double standard again!
The fact is, Paul Williams knows---he well knows---that the arguments I am making, both in defense of my faith, and in criticism of Islam, are beyond his capacity to answer. He cannot exegete the original languages, and his knowledge of Church History is scant at best. As I will demonstrate, both on the Dividing Line, and in public presentation in London, the arguments he presented against Chris Green are fallacious to the core, and rather easily refuted as well. They illustrate clearly that Paul Williams, when professing to be a "Christian," had a very shallow knowledge of the faith he professed, or, he is dishonestly misrepresenting the faith he once professed and actually knew. I will allow the reader, and the listener, to decide that particular issue. But in any case, I am sorry the folks in London will not get to hear Paul Williams' responses to my criticisms. Evidently, he doesn't think they are worth his time. When we post the material on the Internet, we will see how many others agree.