I will make only one comment here. Mr. Enloe wrote to me and said I could not reproduce his letter. Then, he started talking about what he had said, and my alleged replies, in public. I asked him to not bear false witness, and the rest is history. I provide this solely for the purpose of documentation and truthfulness. And as you can see, I can allow long rants to go by without having to answer them in kind. 🙂
Enloe to White, 12/7/04:
There was a time when I had the utmost respect for you and went to enormous lengths not to question you or challenge you in any fashion. Do you remember that time? Do you think that you had anything at all to do with the shift away from that time, or was it all my fault?
You know, there’s a reason I talk the way I did about you in that blog entry, and it’s NOT because you’ve invested so much time and charity in actually trying to UNDERSTAND where I and others are coming from. I know many Baptists who can be Baptists WITHOUT being loveless about “Truth” the way you are. I know many Baptists who do not feel so threatened by criticism that they respond to it by invoking a presumed connection between themselves and poor [heretical] martyrs of the past, as if someone critiquing you on a message board or a blog is even remotely similar to being burned at the stake or drowned! Do you really think this is a reasonable way to think about the criticism you receive?
Is your credibility as a doctorate-holding professional apologist at all helped by the many blog entries you write which basically whine about how others are treating you? Is there some reason why, as others have noted too, you NEVER graciously acknowledge apologies tendered to you, much less offer any of your own? Do you think that is a normal description of Christian behavior?
Can you really be so blind that you think it’s godly and “meaningful” to use your own blog to accuse others of being deliberately deceptive regarding “the Gospel”, and yet think that you have the moral highground when someone else calls you, essentially, a crusader for a gnostic form of spirituality? At least I think you are an HONEST heretic. You can’t even pay that small favor back in kind for your absolute inability to comprehend how anyone could be so stupid as to “disagree with Paul” (really, just with your exegetical constructs–but then, you can’t tell the difference, can you?).
Are you really so out of balance that you think it’s OK to ape Medieval anti-incarnational heretics so long as you Get Justification Right? Is it more important to NOT be a “sacralist” than it is to avoid tacitly denying in your cultural vision what you affirm on paper, the Incarnation of the Word? Is the Trinity anything more to you than a couple of diagrams and a list of prooftexts in a book you wrote to defend “doctrine”? Are you even capable of understanding that doctrine has SOCIAL consequences? Do you care that your social vision reminds many people of the consequences of Arianism and not of orthodox Trinitarian Christianity?
Are you really so naive as to believe that your dismissive, one paragraph slur on Dr. Leithart is evidence that you are a SERIOUS biblical scholar making SERIOUS contributions to the discipline? Leithart is neither Owen nor Enloe, or anyone else you utterly disrespect because they call you to look in the mirror and face your own attitude and repent of your own problems before trying to force others to repent of theirs. He, of all people, did not deserve what you said about him. Not that he needs me to defend him, obviously, or that he has even lost one minute of sleep over how you slurred him. I’m speaking more of how others, watching your every move, perceive your work than how men such as Leithart might react to it.
Of course, all of the above that I wrote just proves how “mean” and “out of control” I am and how you are ONCE AGAIN being “persecuted for righteousness’ sake”. This sort of “analysis” will goes over well among the Fundamentalist community you serve and whose stereotypes about others and shallow, introverted intellectual outlook and piety you constantly reinforce. But meanwhile, the many ARGUMENTS that have been made against your various positions will continue to go unanswered and your credibility will continue to plummet. I don’t have a reputation that can be lost by foolishness. You do. Something for you to think about, perhaps.
Btw, sir, this is a PRIVATE e-mail. I forbid you to selectively cite it on your blog and offer inane, slanderous commentary in the public forum. If you can’t trouble yourself to answer the ARGUMENTS that are made against your views, do not feel free to post private e-mails sent to you by those you have grieved with your shallow, sinful behavior and act as though you have actually interacted with them.
I plead with you to change your behavior, even just a little bit. It would help the present climate in the Reformed world TREMENDOUSLY.
Response, same day:
>>I plead with you to change your behavior, even just a little bit.
>>It would help the present climate in the Reformed world TREMENDOUSLY.
Tim, you are so far beyond rational dialogue, so deeply entrenched in your own little world up there, you cannot see the forest for the trees. You rip and shred and slash and then, when someone responds with mere humor and the advice to calm down before you blow a gasket, you respond with this kind of tome? I do not know you anymore, sir. The man I knew could still hear. You cannot. If you insult me, as you do regularly, I will refute the veiled assertions hidden in those insults: but unlike you, I will be clear and open, and will have the proper motivations. I know my heart. Do you know yours?
From Dave Armstrong’s blog, 1/4/05:
I don’t waste my time on James White anymore. Recently I sent him an e-mail (which, because I stipulated to him that it was private and forbade him to post it on his site I will not post either) in which instead of making assertions about his views I asked him a bunch of pointed questions trying to see if he’d engage objections to his worldview that way since he’s ignored every substantial argument I’ve made. He “responded” by totally ignoring all the questions I asked, and instead citing only the last couple of sentences of my letter (which asked him to modify even just a little bit his behavior relative to others), and offering nothing more but another self-serving declaration about the purity of his own heart relative to mine. So believe you me, I fully understand Dave’s frustrations with him.
White to Enloe, 1/4/2005:
Please stop bearing false witness in public about your e-mail to me, and my reply. If you do it again, I will post it, en toto, and let the readers decide. Thanks.
Enloe to White, 1/4/05:
Bearing false witness??? I stated exactly the case. I referred to your past behavior of invoking martyrs of the past as analogies to what you yourself are going through. I stated the truth, that anyone who has had any lengthy dealings with you knows, that you NEVER tender apologies for your behavior and NEVER respond with grace to apologies tendered to you. I asked you serious doctrinal and practical questions, trying to draw you out into a reasonable discussion about disputed matters. You did not answer anything substantial that I said, but instead quoted only the last couple of sentences I wrote, and attached a bizarre comment about the supposed purity of your heart relative to mine. That is EXACTLY what was said. No false witness was borne by me at all.
I’m sure you’re really honked off about all the “mean” things I said in the note, too, such as saying that you “ape” Medieval anti-incarnational heresies. Well, tough. That’s actually an arguable point, unlike the numerous mere slanders you issue about the states of other people’s souls, accusations of them of not liking truth, and so forth. You’ve got about ZERO room to talk about people being “mean” to you, and when you do so it’s just an excuse that lets you off the hook of answering hard questions put to you.
Don’t threaten me again, Mr. White. I don’t take kindly to bullies.
White to Enloe in response, 1/4/05:
>>Don’t threaten me again, Mr. White. I don’t take kindly to bullies.
It is not a threat, sir. It is a promise. 🙂
Enloe to White, 1/5/2005:
Well go right ahead then. I’m not afraid of you, Mr. White. You have zero credibility in my eyes, and so I really don’t care what you say about me. Do the rest of the world a favor, though. Post the ENTIRE thing, not just the snippets that you feel serve your stupid “Woe is me, everybody hates me I think I’ll just go to Alaska and sell tires” martyr mentality. (Remember saying that to me, shortly after the deal with Brian Harrington on co-URC?) Don’t you dare “bear false witness” against me by only selectively citing those portions of my words which you can use to deflect attention from the SUBSTANTIVE criticisms that come your way. You know, as the Lord God Jehovah in heaven knows and is watching every word that you and I both type, that I have written far more about your views, and most of it quite substantial, than any one-sided list of “lies” and “ad hominems” you can put together. Be honest. Be a Christian. Don’t hide from public accountability.
I am not afraid of having my letter posted. I only forbade you to originally BECAUSE your usual tactic is to cite only things that hurt your feelings, so that you can get your followers to tell you once again how much they love you and how lost they would be without you. So yes, post my letter in its ENTIRETY, and after you do so, do remind your readers that while you constantly obsess on other people’s “ad hominems” and “lies” about you, you can’t seem to find time to substantively address things such as criticisms of your sacralism / non-sacralism dichotomy, or your philosophical dependence on Enlightenment schools of epistemological and philosophical-hermeneutical thought. Yes, do post the ENTIRE letter, so that other people can see the MANY substantive things which you never engage. I’m sure that will help your rapidly imploding credibility greatly.
White to Enloe, 1/5/05:
>>Yes, do post the ENTIRE letter, so that other people can
>>see the MANY substantive things which you never
>>engage. I’m sure that will help your rapidly imploding credibility greatly.
Thanks, Tim, I’ll do that. Let’s let the readers decide. 🙂
Enloe to White, 1/5/05:
Oh goody. So does “I’ll do that” mean you’re going to address the ARGUMENTS and QUESTIONS, or just post the letter and go “See how mean and barely rational TGE is!”?
I don’t know why in the world you can’t just focus on ISSUES instead of all this personal stuff. I’ve tried VERY hard to steer my own comments away from such things as calling you an “egotist” and so forth. Why can’t you reciprocate?
If your e-mail box bores you at times, just remember mine. 🙂
Update: You will note 98% of the preceding words were written by Mr. Enloe. So, once I posted this, what did he do? Added a 4000 word wild-eyed rant on his blog. Evidently, getting the last word wasn’t enough for him. To be honest, he is so far gone, just letting him rant and rave is more than sufficient response.