This morning Jimmy Akin verified the Beckwith story here. You will note, “The source through which the matter was made public happened to be James White’s blog, and as you can imagine, Mr. White is not happy.” But, Akin provided the link to my comments, and I am grateful that he did so. I’m not sure why anyone would think I would ever be happy about someone abandoning the gospel of grace for the sacramental system of Rome, and obviously, when someone like Frank Beckwith does this, we will be treated once again to repeated illustrations of just how shallow post-evangelicalism is in reference to its commitment to the core truths of the gospel of grace. I am certain that, unless he does the right thing and steps down from his position as the head of ETS, he will be allowed to complete his term. Organizations like ETS move at the speed of an over-loaded ’74 Chevy Luv on a steep grade, so even if a movement developed to remove him, it would have no possible means of doing anything until long after the next election. And so I can only call on Dr. Beckwith to do the right thing, and point out that if the head of, say, an organization like the Catholic Theological Society were to announce that he had become an independent Bible-Baptist King James Onlyist, I would call on him to step down, too. It is a simple matter of doing the right thing, and straining the micro-sized ETS statement of faith to the point of making it essentially irrelevant is hardly doing the right thing.
But I digress. Akin attempts to argue that Beckwith could, in good conscience, remain as president of ETS. Evidently, Akin would agree with the “let’s not worry what the founders intended, we can do as we wish” viewpoint of Constitutional interpretation as well, since Nicole’s statement, which I heard with my own ears, evidently is not enough. I guess we need to poll all the founders to provide sufficient basis. I have no interest in arguing the point. If Akin wouldn’t mind a new Baptist convert from Rome running some Roman Catholic institution or organization, then fine. He can disagree with me over Beckwith staying at the helm of ETS.
Anyway, I only mention Akin’s blog because at the very least, Akin did not pour a gallon of acid into his keyboard before he posted his article. For that, I’m thankful. Jimmy and I aren’t going to be sitting around chatting over coffee anytime soon, but at least he can write in a civil manner. Unlike…the Roman moonbats.
Now, moonbat is an interesting phrase. It is generally used to describe the wacko left, but it strikes me as being particularly descriptive of wackos in general, unhinged folks who have no self-control and are utterly controlled by their angry emotions. Most religions have their moonbats. Rome surely does. Off the top of my head, we can list Vinney Lewis, Art Sippo, Dave “the Stalker” Armstrong, and the ever-loquacious Mark Shea.
About four hours after I posted the article on the Beckwith reversion, Armstrong posted a rambling attack on…who else? I think DA was just upset he wasn’t “in the know” like Akin. Now, I expect moonbat behavior from DA. His track-record speaks for itself. I mean, bats hang in trees, right? But I was just checking RSS feeds, and found that one of the most disagreeable, nasty, mean-spirited RC apologists out there has chimed in.
I have never found Mark Shea capable of the control Akin showed in his post. He likes to insult folks, and in particular, yours truly. Not much for substantive response, and surely not one for debate (he has had a standing challenge for quite some time). In any case, he seems to read a lot of political blogs, and maybe cannot see that he has imbibed their vitriol into his own posting. Here’s his insightful, kind, helpful commentary:
Bill Cork has announced that he is returning to Seventh Day Adventism. I am sorry to hear it, of course. However, I would appreciate it if readers would not use my comboxes to run diagnostics on his soul. The best thing at such times is prayer.
In happier news, Dr. Frank Beckwith, the current President of the Evangelical Theological Society, has swum the Tiber. Unfortunately, the only link I can find to the story at present is James White’s fulminations about it over at “ArroganceOurMINistry.org” which, while typical of James White fulminations, are not terribly edifying for people who want to know something besides the fact that James White’s Hindenburg-size ego is offended, causing him to emit clouds of defensive ASCII into the cybersphere like a panicked squid.
I trust Dr. Beckwith will soon have something out in print describing the reasons for his move. He too can certainly use prayer. Such men sacrifice a great deal (including livelihood very often).
Wow, that was deep. I sure feel refuted! I mean, I honestly did not expect Shea to interact with anything I said, because, well, that would require apologetics, and Shea is more a mud-slinger than any kind of apologist. But I must say, I am impressed at how you can get that snarling sound-effect into your words so folks know just how consumed you are without you having to provide any graphics! That’s…just amazing. But hey, I should note the one redeeming element of Shea’s moonbat explosion: he linked to my article. If he has any readers who do not spit nails at the thought of following the link, they may well ponder why Shea’s words are so far removed in tenor from those he is allegedly responding to.
Meanwhile, Edward Hara, another loving representative of the Roman communion, just wrote to me:
Sir White: I read with something akin to astonishment the article you wrote concerning the latest of Protestants to return to the True Church, Dr. Beckwith. You continue to make claims which are, to put it quite succinctly, outright lies. Don’t you know that bearing false witness is a sin and you will answer for it? No, I guess not, because you think that you are able to hide under the “snow white blanket of Christ’s righteousness” and therefore are not subject to the judgment which our Lord promised in John 5: 28 – 29 and Romans 2: 5 – 10. You continually insist upon insulting converts, inferring that due to some form of mental weakness or emotional deficiency we are duped into becoming Catholic. Such is hardly the case, and as for myself, and the other converts I know and converse with, we are more than able to defend the Catholic Faith from such brainless bigotry and mindless misinterpretation of the Holy Scriptures as you present. When I defend the ancient Faith against such close minded stalwarts for bigotry as you are, I am able to use the Bible alone to defend each and every doctrine which is taught by the Church. Your sense of historical understanding is also woefully lacking, yet you will not listen, no matter how many times you are debated and Catholic apologists make a screaming fool out of you publically. I would volunteer myself, but since I am not a trained apologist, it is more fun to watch them skin you alive than to attempt for myself that which I am not equipped for. But back to the historical. Do you realize that if you presented your theological opinions to the Nicene Council you would have been hooted right out of the building, with urgent pleas to repent of your heresies? That was a major theme that caused me to reevaluate my Presbyterianism. I simply couldn’t prove nor find any evidence that Presbyterian rubric and polity existed prior to Calvin’s inventing it. So much for theological historical accuracy. However, I do note that you resort to insisting, as most narrow minded bigots do, that the Church was already paganized by the 3rd century. What a convenient lie to hide behind. How do you explain that Orthodoxy, to which I belong (Eastern Catholic) has not changed at all for 2,000 years? You can’t, unless you want to be highly dishonest. And we believe exactly the same things as the Roman West. Chew on that for a while. And finally, you claim that the people on THE JOURNEY HOME are loathe to take on your apologia. Get a life!! Most of us relish the opportunity to go head to head with error, even if we are insulted and made to look fools by a preponderance of lies and falsification of evidence thrown at us. The Journey Home is an apostolate designed to help confused Protestants, especially clergy, back to the True Church. They are not in the business of debating. I do hope you will open your eyes and ears some day and realize that the reason brilliant people have come Home to Rome is exactly that — because they are brilliant and the TRUTH finds them, instructs them, and brings them to itself. Your brain is your worst enemy, along with your massive ego. But that is pretty typical of Calvinists, who think that they alone possess the truth as the elect of God. Would that you only knew!
There you go, folks. For those who have actually taken the time to read, to listen, to ponder, you cannot help but shake your head in disbelief. But, remember, folks like this never actually listen to what is being said. “Let him who has ears to hear….” By the way, I have replied to Mr. Hara. I’d love to have him join me on the DL to substantiate his claims, but, well, we know how often that invitation is acted upon.
Evidently someone pointed Shea to this response, and, at least for a while, this appeared on his blog:
James White (Pictured Below) Reacts to Being Taken Lightly
I’m not sure why taking James lightly makes one a moonbat. I always thought the term referred to people who think Jews are tunnelling under their house or that Bush is just about to declare martial law and have Congress shot. Apparently, in Jamesworld, not taking James as seriously as he takes himself marks you as a victim of some equally grave form of insanity.