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The Protestant’s Dilemma: A Review (Part One)

Recently I picked up The Protestant’s Dilemma: How the Reformation’s Shocking Consequences Point to the Truth of Catholicism
(San Diego: Catholic Answers Press, 2014). In the preface of the Kindle edition, an unidentified author states that the primary author, Devin Rose, has put forth a book looking to engage in “dialogue specifically”with members of the thousands of Protestant sects.” The book is said to raise issues that a Protestant “has never considered before,” not simply to have dialogue for the sake of mutual understanding, but rather to have “conciliar” dialogue in which the goal is to show the logical inconsistency of Protestantism while leading a reader into “the fullness of truth that Catholic Church alone possesses in fullness.” In response, I offer these reviews of The Protestant’s Dilemma (TPD), to demonstrate that the book does the opposite of its intentions. It presents caricatures of Protestant positions, illogical conclusions, shoddy documentation, assumes the truth of the Roman Catholic worldview without proving it, and demonstrates that the author did not apply his own criteria to his own position.

The Conversion Story
It’s not surprising that TPD begins with the conversion story of the author. Conversion stories like that offered by Mr. Rose typically point to the abilities of a person and the supposed wisdom gained by crossing the Tiber. For instance, Rose begins by showing how as a new convert to Christianity, he was already quick to ask about the problem of multiple denominations: “How had I, a newly minted Christian, come so quickly to a conclusion about which denomination taught the real truth?” He says also,

It was never a question in my mind that God is a reasonable being. I assumed it to be true, because even as an atheist I observed that the world functioned in a logical manner: Scientific laws were provable, mathematics could produce correct answers to problems, and deductive and inductive reasoning were demonstrably useful for understanding reality. The Christian faith, therefore, must also be supported by sound reasons, even if its truths also exceeded the limits of what reason could prove. I brought such an analysis with me into my new found faith, and I discovered that Protestantism’s tenets led to untenable conclusions. It simply was not possible to maintain a reasonable basis for my Christian faith while remaining Protestant.

This is not to say that reason is not important, or that people should not reasonably think about their faith. What irks me about Rome’s converts is that they take their reasoning only so far. Rose’s conversion story displays the same logical inconsistency that most of them do. His story is filled with the traumatic uncertainly felt as a Protestant and then the joys of certainly that a conversion to Roman Catholicism brings. The author states as a Protestant he “prayed that Jesus would guide [him] into the denomination that was the truest.” He was befuddled by Christians “claiming to be ‘led by the Holy Spirit‘” using the “the Bible alone” and having different understandings of the Bible. He asks, “How did I know who was right?” He concluded that the Holy Spirit would lead such a person to the true church, this along with “investigating the Catholic Church in earnest.” What Rome’s converts rarely admit though is that the story they so cling to as an objective reality is a subjective experience, as all personal stories are. There’s not much different between this story and that put forth by a Mormon or an Islamic convert (and particularly a convert to Orthodoxy). It was the fallible decision of Devin Rose to conclude that Rome was the true church.

Elsewhere in TPD the author speaks against “the principle of private judgment.” He states,

At the root of the endemic divisions within Protestantism lies the absence (and by definition, the impossibility) of an interpretive authority for Scripture above that of the individual Christian. Protestants cannot accept that any person or group has this power, because the Bible itself has to be the ultimate authority. Ideally, Protestants would be united in their interpretation of the Bible; but as we have seen, from the beginning of Protestantism this has not been the case. This lack of unity leads inevitably to the principle of private judgment, which makes each believer the final interpreter of Scripture. Just as inevitably, each believer’s interpretation will be at least partly wrong, because no believer is infallible.

But yet, private judgment was the very principle which led him to Rome rather than Orthodoxy or Islam! Why is private judgment acceptable when choosing to become Roman Catholic, and then once becoming a Roman Catholic, it is no longer acceptable?

Mr. Rose claims he investigated those claiming to possess “the fullness of truth“- Roman Catholicism, Orthodoxy, and Mormonism (why not Islam?). His research most certainly included interpretations of Scripture. His study led him to conclude that Rome was the true church. But this raises the same problem. The body of literature that Mr. Rose went through is the same body of literature that Rome says is not open for private judgment, nor can it be understood properly without the infallible guidance of the Roman church. Yet, Mr. Rose used the very thing Rome says one is not to rely on, private judgment.

Eric Svendsen pointed all this out years ago:

“The fact is, he had to engage in the very same principle of private judgment that we all must use to decide among the various options; namely, a thinking, objective reasoning process, apart from reliance upon the system to which he would eventually subscribe. But it is that very same principle of private judgment that leads him to Rome and others of us away from Rome. Certainly Rome condemns the decision we reached, but she cannot condemn the principle we used to that decision, since it is the very same principle that all Roman Catholics must use to decide that Rome is the ‘true’ church. The Roman Catholic cannot introduce a double standard at this point and still be consistent.” [Eric Svendsen, Upon This Slippery Rock, (New York: Calvary Press, 2002), p.34]. 

It is simply gratuitous to suggest that private judgment is sufficient to interpret Scripture and church history to determine whether Rome is the true church, but insufficient to interpret Scripture and church history once we either accept or reject Rome. After all, in order to arrive at the conclusion that Rome is the true church, we must first compare Rome to Scripture and church history; hence we must first engage in private interpretation of these things before choosing Rome. But if our private interpretation of Scripture and church history is sufficient to inform us that Rome is the true church, how is it that that same private judgment is suddenly rendered deficient once we either get to Rome or reject Rome? [Eric Svendsen, Upon This Slippery Rock,(New York: Calvary Press, 2002), pp. 34-35]

An irony about Rome’s conversion stories is that one never knows when they’re finished. Take the ex-poster child for Catholic Answers, Gerry Matatics. He certainly loved to tell his story. Simply go back and listen to his debates with Dr. White. He’d tell that story every chance he could get. He’d even stay late into the night to tell it again and again. Now, go ask Karl Keating why Mr. Matatics is no longer endorsed by Catholic Answers. Gerry likewise used his reason.  Similarly, how do I know that Devin Rose isn’t going to keep having a new conversion story? How do I know his intelligence won’t lead him to the positions held by Gerry Matatics, Robert Sungenis or Father Gruner?

This is typical of these conversion stories.  They do not point to Christ—they point to a triumphal entry into the Roman Church from one’s own intellectual abilities. Their conversion stories are about what they did. They are about what wisdom and glory they achieved. They are not conversion stories of the broken sinner bowing his knee to the merciful God, given by the Father to Christ and irresistibly drawn (like Paul’s recounting in Galatians 1; cf. Acts 9); rather, these are accounts of people accepting the alleged Roman Catholic “fullness of truth”, and a rejection of Protestant essentials like sola fide and sola scriptura. In other words, the emphasis is not on spiritual rebirth, but rather the acceptance and realization of a “higher knowledge.” The conversion is not to Christ, but to an infallible church.

In a recent blog article, Mr. Rose stated,

Near the end, Dr. Quiggle brought up Martin Luther’s famous words about standing by what he thinks the Bible teaches. “Popes and councils have erred in the past. Unless I’m convinced by Scripture and reason, here I stand. And that’s what it means to be a Protestant.” I gave a final rejoinder that the individual Protestant is the ultimate interpretive authority, and that under Protestantism, not only popes and councils are error-prone, but all people and churches and denominations are, so who are we supposed to follow? Who teaches the truth of God without error?

Here’ it is again. Mr. Rose appears to not have any problem being the “ultimate interpretive authority” in determining that Rome is the “fullness of truth”while Islam or Orthodoxy is not. Then, on the other hand, once becoming a Roman Catholic, “ultimate interpretive authority” is no longer to be trusted.

James White vs. Martin Luther: The Protestant’s Dilemma?

I can think of no better way for a defender of Rome to generate sales for a product than to mention James White. The reason is not hard to figure out. He’s been at the forefront critiquing their current materials, long before most of us joined the battle. It was no surprise then to find Devin Rose posting his recent sales video, “The Protestant’s Dilemma Destroys James White’s Scripture Alone.” This book destroys the work of Dr. White on Roman Catholicism? Well, this I had to see. So, yes, Mr. Rose managed to generate another sale.

Before getting to the book in a future post, there were some things mentioned in Devin’s short sales video. First, he critiques the back cover of Dr. White’s book, Scripture Alone. The back cover has this quote from Luther: “The Word comes first, and with the Word the Spirit breathes upon my heart so that I believe.” Mr. Rose states, “Now on the back he’s got a quote from Martin Luther, right, so he’s got a quote from Martin Luther but, White’s not a Lutheran. Nor does he believe in Lutheran doctrines, nor does he believe in doctrines Martin Luther believed in.” Now I would venture to guess it was probably someone at Bethany House Publishers that actually designed the front and back cover of Scripture Alone (in fact, there is a person credited for the cover design). What typically happens is a person working for the publisher reads the book, and creates the blurb for the back cover. Sure enough, had Mr. Rose read the book carefully, he would have discovered the Luther quote actually comes from the first few pages of the book. There Dr. White explains why the quote was used. The quote was in regard to the basic Biblical issue that caused controversy during the Reformation: the Word of God is preeminent as the sole infallible rule for the church, over against the notion that Rome “was the custodian of sacred tradition” and that “people needed her magisterial authority.” Whatever differences Dr. White may have with Luther, on this point there is agreement.*

Mr. Rose though appears to think Luther vs. White is another clever dilemma. If the paradigm being set forth is that every person one quotes from church history has to be in exact agreement with what someone today believes, Mr. Rose has a lot of editing to do on his next edition of The Protestant’s Dilemma. There are a number of people from Church history he refers to that don’t believe the exact same things he does. For instance Mr. Rose appeals to Origen for sacramental confession to a priest, yet the canon Origen held to isn’t what Rose holds to. Then there are Protestant historians like Alister McGrath utilized to critique Protestantism. Why should Rose cite McGrath? Rose doesn’t believe in the totality of McGrath’s view of Church history.

Second, Mr. Rose mentions that “Martin Luther wanted to remove four books from the New Testament.” The dilemma appears to be that since Dr. White doesn’t want to remove four books from the New Testament, and Luther did, the back cover of Scripture Alone invalidates the material in the book. If anything is invalidated, it’s the credibility of Mr. Rose. It is a simple historical fact that Luther’s translation of the Bible contained all of its books. Luther began translating the New Testament in 1521, and released a finished version in 1522 (some Protestants might be surprised to learn that Luther also translated and included the Old Testament Apocrypha in his German Bible). Mr. Rose appears to have confused Luther’s comments from his prefaces in regard to the canonical status of particular books with wanting to have them physically removed from the Bible.

Third, Mr. Rose mentions, “Martin Luther believed in Marian veneration and in Mary’s perpetual virginity. James White doesn’t believe that, so why is he quoting Luther? Right? It’s the same silly stuff that you see over and over again.” The dilemma appears to be that the book Scripture Alone is “silly stuff” because of Luther’s Marian veneration and Dr. White’s lack thereof. If anything is silly, it’s the arguments Rome’s defenders put forth to prove Luther’s Marian devotion or veneration. While Luther said nice things about Mary, his mature Mariology is not modern-day Roman Catholic Mariology. Saying nice things about Mary is not the same thing as Roman Catholic Marian veneration, both then and now. Luther abandoned the intercessory role of Mary, and saw the idol medieval theology had created. Medieval veneration had its sole purpose of appealing to Mary for daily and ultimate help. Her attributes were worshiped in order to gain her favor. To suggest that Luther held to Marian veneration is to say that Luther sought her as a means to her Son. For Luther though, quite the opposite is the case. Luther did not venerate Mary as Rome’s defenders understand veneration. Luther venerated Christ.

In the last few seconds of his video, Mr. Rose triumphantly claims he’s read the best Protestant books, places Scripture Alone behind him, holds up his book, and makes his final sales pitch:”The Protestant’s Dilemma. You can get it from Amazon, Catholic Answers. It’s a cheap book, uh, you can give it to a Protestant friend, read it yourself, learn good arguments.” He began his video by mentioning that Protestantism has “logical flaws,” but if his Dr. White vs. Dr. Luther argument is any indication of what the book contains, I won’t be abandoning the Scriptures as the sole infallible rule of faith any time soon.

* It’s interesting that in his book, Mr. Rose says, “Martin Luther sparked the Protestant Reformation and formulated the key tenets still held by all Protestants today: sola fide and sola scriptura.” By this admission, it appears that Mr. Rose had no justification to critique the back of Dr. White’s book in the first place. For a further look at this see: When the Defenders of Rome Refute Themselves.

Martin Luther Believed in Devotion to Mary?

Recently-across-the-Tiber Jason Reed says:”And then, as I started reading the reformers, they’re Catholic! Luther believed in the devotion to Mary.” While Luther said nice things about Mary, his mature Mariology is not modern-day Roman Catholic Mariology. Saying nice things about Mary is not the same thing as Roman Catholic Marian devotion, both then and now.

Young Luther, Saints, and the Virgin
Young Luther was enveloped in a religious climate consisting of a host of saints and superstitions. All worked together in a grand scheme of relief from the ravages of medieval life as well as appeasing the always-watching wrathful God. The Virgin Mary played a prominent role in medieval culture. To her was bestowed great veneration and devotion. Roman Catholic Historian Joseph Lortz explains,

Everything was dedicated to her and bore her name – places, churches, alters, girls. The widespread custom of singing the Salve Regina on Saturday evenings arose as a means of extolling her fame. The devout soul of the people was as much expressed in fervent hymns to Mary and legends about her, as in the countless number of paintings and sculptures of the Madonna, some of them very beautiful. Many confraternities were formed in her honor, and many endowments made. In all of this period her praise was never silent.[2]

Participating in the cults of sainthood with all the fervent zeal of the time, A Tabletalk records young Martin called on three saints at every Mass. He recalled selecting twenty-one saints, “Thus I came the round in a week“[1]. Another recollection from Luther’s Tabletalk expresses the impact medieval Mariolatry had on the young Martin Luther. Sometime in 1503, a Tabletalk records he unintentionally stabbed his shin on a short sword and cut an artery in his leg. Thinking himself near death from the wound, he cried out, “Mary, help!” Help indeed arrived, but in the form of a surgeon who dressed the wound. Later that evening, the wound broke open again. The same fear of death gripped him, and Mary was called upon once more to save his life. Had Mary saved Luther? The mature Luther looking back on this experience realized how far from the spiritual help of Christ he actually was: “I would have died with my trust in Mary“[3].

In the Augustinian monastery, meditation on the blessed mother was also a unique channel to make the heart fertile for divine grace. Mary was crowned with a special degree of glory that surpassed others in the divine realm. Luther at this time was influenced by the Mariology of Bernard of Clairvaux. Later recollecting on this influence, Luther stated:

St. Bernard, who was a pious man otherwise, also said: “Behold how Christ chides, censures, and condemns the Pharisees so harshly throughout the Gospel, whereas the Virgin Mary is always kind and gentle and never utters an unfriendly word.” From this he inferred: “Christ is given to scolding and punishing, but Mary has nothing but sweetness and love.” Therefore Christ was generally feared; we fled from Him and took refuge with the saints, calling upon Mary and others to deliver us from our distress. We regarded them all as holier than Christ. Christ was only the executioner, while the saints were our mediators.[4]

He also recollected,

Christ in His mercy was hidden from my eyes. I wanted to become justified before God through the merits of the saints. This gave rise to the petition for the intercession of the saints. On a portrait St. Bernard, too, is portrayed adoring the Virgin Mary as she directs her Son, Christ, to the breasts that suckled Oh, how many kisses we bestowed on Mary![5]

Reflecting on this Luther concluded, that even in St Bernard’s incessant praise of Mary as she directs the sinner toward Christ, Bernard left out Christ completely: “Bernard filled a whole sermon with praise of the Virgin Mary and in so doing forgot to mention what happened [the incarnation of Christ]; so highly did he… esteem Mary” [6]. Thus, young Luther partook in Mariolatry, but the mature Luther looking back saw only the excesses of medieval devotion to Mary. He saw that she had been adorned with attributes that only belonged to Christ.

Martin Luther Prayed to Mary?
Roman Catholic devotion to Mary includes a heavy practice of praying to Mary. In a sermon of August 15, 1516, Luther was to say, “O blessed mother! O most worthy virgin! Remember us, and grant that the Lord do such great things to us too“[7]. In 1519, Luther still could exhort his congregation to “call upon the holy angels, particularly his own angel, the Mother of God, and all the apostles and saints“[8] as a comfort in the hour when each was to face their own death. By 1522 things had changed. Erfurt Evangelists questioning Luther on the intercession of saints received this response,

I beseech in Christ that your preachers forbear entering upon questions concerning the saints in heaven and the deceased, and I ask you to turn the attention of people away from these matters in view of the fact… that they are neither profitable nor necessary for salvation. This is also reason why God decided not to let us know anything about His dealings with the deceased. Surely he is not committing a sin who does not call upon any saint but only clings firmly to the one mediator, Jesus Christ.[9]

In the same year, Luther put together his Personal Prayer Book (which included the traditional Hail Mary). Luther though was to place the Hail Mary in an evangelical context, and this to the consternation of his critics. An early pamphlet criticized his prayer book as a “subtle mixture of poison with much that was good.” The “poison” was Luther’s evangelical interpretation of the Hail Mary, “which was bound to offend many who were accustomed to, the cult of the Virgin“[10.]

Luther knew that prayers to, and faith in the saints violated the First Commandment. In his understanding, the role of faith or trust in the First Commandment determines whether one worships the true God, or an idol. To have a God is nothing else than to trust and believe in Him with the whole heart. This trust and the faith of the heart alone make either God or an idol. If faith and trust are right, then your god is the true God. If it is wrong, then you do not have the true God. That to which the heart clings is really your God. If your heart clings and entrusts itself to something God has made, then your faith is wrong, and you are caught in your sin, and you stand under the crushing condemnation of God’s law. Luther said:

No one can deny that by such saint worship we have now come to the point where we have actually made utter idols of the Mother of God and the saints, and that because of the service we have rendered and the works we have performed in their honor we have sought comfort more with them than with Christ Himself. Thereby faith in Christ has been destroyed.[11]

As Luther’s thinking was transformed by a Christ centered hermeneutic, it was inevitable that the harsh judge and the silent idols would be replaced by the true God of the gospel. Christ the cruel judge who had to be appeased by “penance, confession, and works of satisfaction, [and] with the intercession of his mother and of all the saints“[12] , was now Christ the “comfort us poor sinners in the most loving and effective manner“[13]. One was no longer saved by “works, monkery, Masses, and saint worship but exclusively through this Christ” [14].

Luther in Context?
In other words, as Luther’s thought progressed, his “Marian devotion” diminished. This hasn’t stopped Rome’s apologists though from sifting his writings to come up with alleged proof that Luther held some sort of lifelong devotion. One Roman apologist claimed that Luther was “..extraordinarily devoted to the Blessed Virgin Mary.” As proof, Luther’s last sermon at Wittenberg was cited and it was pointed out that he “praised” Mary. Yes, the sermon mentions Mary. Luther did not say or imply though that Mary should be honored. Luther’s tone is quite sarcastic, and his main point is that Christ alone should be worshiped. Luther mocks those who would call upon Mary or venerate her. Luther insists that those who seek Christ through Mary do so by the use of “reason,” and “reason is by nature a harmful whore.”

There are a number of these sort of quotes, that when put back in context say something much different than Rome’s apologists say they do. There’s the quote from Luther that states, “The veneration of Mary is inscribed in the very depths of the human heart.” In context though, Luther’s point is that whatever respect Mary was due, the Church of his day had collectively had gone far beyond it.”The veneration of Mary is inscribed in the very depths of the human heart” is not a positive statement, but a negative statement. This sentence placed back in its context is in regard to excessive Marian devotion!

Setting the Record Straight
I certainly would be interested in finding out what Mr. Reed read that drove him to the conclusion that “Luther believed in the devotion to Mary.” Often times when I interact with Roman Catholics on Luther’s Mariology, they point out a number of similarities between Romanist Mariology and Luther’s Mariology. The irony of course is that in other theological areas, Luther is maligned. When it comes to the topic of Mary though, Roman Catholic sentiment towards Luther shifts considerably. Luther becomes the staunch supporter of Mary; a leader that all contemporary Protestants should learn a great lesson in Mariology from. This drastic shift is puzzling- particularly since Luther’s abandoning of the intercession of the saints and his doctrine of justification significantly changes his Marian approach.

Yes, There are some similarities. Luther did believe in Mary’s perpetual virginity. On the other hand, proving Luther held a lifelong belief in the immaculate conception is simply something that cannot be proven from the historical record. Sometimes Roman Catholics will argue Luther never denied the Assumption of Mary (therefore he may have believed it). But when one looks at the context of the quote they use as proof, it becomes obvious they’re not doing good historical research. There’s a bunch of other ridiculous arguments they put forth as proof of Luther’s devotion to Mary. They say that Luther preached on all the Marian feast days. What they don’t tell you is that Luther abandoned the festival of Mary’s Immaculate Conception and her Assumption. Even with the extant sermons available from Luther on these days, the topic more often than not, is not about Mary. Perhaps the silliest of all was when Mark Shea said Luther’s devotion to Mary was proved by Peter Vischer’s sculpture of the Coronation of the Virgin which adorned Luther’s tomb. For more of my exploration of Luther’s Mariology, see my master list.

The colors of the Roman Catholic picture of Luther’s devotion to Mary become blurry and unfocused when examined in the light of his writings and theology. Once the intercessory role of Mary was abandoned, Luther saw the idol medieval theology had created. The medieval veneration had its sole purpose of appealing to her for daily and ultimate help. Her attributes were worshipped in order to gain her favor. To suggest that Luther held a virtually Roman Mariology is to imply his veneration of Mary and the tradition of worshipping her attributes. It is to say that Luther sought her as a means to her Son. For Luther though, quite the opposite is the case:

Christ is not so much a judge and an angry God but one who bears and carries our sins, a mediator. Away with the papists, who have set Christ before us as a terrible judge and have turned the saints into intercessors! There they have added fuel to the fire. By nature we are already afraid of God. Blessed therefore are those who as uncorrupted young people arrived at this understanding, that they can say: “I only knew Jesus Christ as the bearer of my sins. [15]

1.WA TR 4:305-306
2.Joseph Lortz, The Reformation in Germany, trans. Ronald Walls (London: Darton, Longman, and Todd, 1968), 1:112
3. LW 54:15
4. LW 22:377
5. LW 22:145
6. LW 54:84
7. WA 1:79; cf. Ewald Plass, What Luther Says Vol. III, (Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959), 1257
8. LW 42:113
9. WA 10(2): 165; cf. What Luther Says, Vol. III, 1253
10. LW 43:9-10
11. WA 11:415; cf. What Luther Says, Vol. III, 1254
12. LW 40:376
13. LW 40:375
14. LW 24:119
15. LW 17:224

Tim Staples vs. Catholic Answers on Matt. 5:29

Matthew 5:29-30

29 If your right eye makes you stumble, tear it out and throw it from you; for it is better for you to lose one of the parts of your body, than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30 If your right hand makes you stumble, cut it off and throw it from you; for it is better for you to lose one of the parts of your body, than for your whole body to go into hell.

Catholic Answers says:

Christ used hyperbole often, for example when he declared, “If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and throw it away; it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell” (Matt. 5:29, cf. 18:9; Mark 9:47). Christ certainly did not intend this to be applied literally, for otherwise all Christians would be blind amputees! (cf. 1 John 1:8; 1 Tim. 1:15). We are all subject to “the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life” (1 John 2:16).

Source: Call No Man Father NIHIL OBSTAT: I have concluded that the materials presented in this work are free of doctrinal or moral errors. Bernadeane Carr, STL, Censor Librorum, August 10, 2004 IMPRIMATUR: In accord with 1983 CIC 827 permission to publish this work is hereby granted. +Robert H. Brom, Bishop of San Diego, August 10, 2004

Tim Staples says it isn’t hyperbole. Listen here.Tim says if your eye or hand offend, cut the eye out and cut the hand off “because I’m gonna get a new one when I get to heaven…

For all of Rome’s protests and her insistence upon the need to submit to the ‘unanimous consent’ of the fathers, as well as her own official definitive meanings of holy Scripture, there are no specific infallible interpretations to which anyone can point! Dogmatic assertions do not make for proof. At the end of the day, no matter how often the claim is made, it is still nothing more than a claim, because Roman apologists cannot produce the actual rule for which they argue. [David King, Holy Scripture: The Ground and Pillar of Our Faith, Volume I, (Battle Creek: Christian Resources, 2001), p. 226]

The Dividing Line, June 11

Dr. White discussed recent upcoming trips to Germany and South Africa; Timothy George’s continued ecumenical attitude toward Roman Catholicism by a recent article in Christianity Today about Pope Francis. His compromise is hard to understand, because Timothy George is not ignorant of church history and historical theology. Dr. White also discussed an article at the “Gay Voices” section at the Huffington Post blog; continued his analysis of Michael Brown’s treatment of Romans 9; and continued reviewing Yusuf Ismail’s arguments in his debate with William Lane Craig.