Dluxe's World

Tuesday, January 17

Making people cry....

So, The J-Man (r) (C) told me last night that my blog makes him sad. I think my posts lack a certain blithe attitude that he's looking for on the 'net. If you're reading this, Dr. Berman, you might wanna go check out something else... This will not be to your taste.

So, anyway... I employ many strategies to make myself seem smarter than I am. My usual default approach is to say nothing while intelligent people speak, but nod thoughtfully every once in a while. While this has worked, I'm now prepared to employ a new strategy! Enter "The Patsy".

I've been reading a book that makes your head hurt called "Debating Calvinism". I bought it because it appeared to present an intelligent, stimulating debate - one person for, one against - around the TULIP points of Calvinism.

The Pro-Calvinist viewpoint, articulately provided by James White, reads something like a complicated theology journal article. White's presentation is very solid, well justified/reasoned, but terribly cold and 'academic' feeling. Moreover, there is a smugness in his writing that reeks of "HA HA! I'm intellectually superior!" Christianity. Still, all his points are all valid so I want to be sure not to detract from the argument by lancing the person arguing.

Since I am really curious about this stuff, I was excited to turn the page and read David Hunt's response. Sadly, I was sorely disappointed. It seems that Mr. Hunt is 'The Patsy'.

In stark contrast to the academic, reasoned presentation of Calvinism by Mr. White, Hunt's counterpoints go a little something like this (paraphrasing):

Whoa! Did you see that?!? I can't believe he said that! That's just crazy... I mean, God is love! I just think that's silly. Here's a verse that says God is love... SEE?!!?!

It is obvious that Calvinism gets Hunt's bile flowing in a major way... And certainly passionate arguments have their place. Here, however, it comes across very, very poorly. Instead of decimating the Calvinist viewpoint, Hunt comes across as lacking any real bullets to fire at his opponent. The result is something more akin to a conniption.

The reader's left wondering: Is Calvinsim really so 'right' that no thoughtful argument can be made against it? Or, as I suspect, is 'The Patsy' attack to blame for the extreme one-sidedness I see in these pages? I personally think that TULIP stands up well to challenges - it just didn't get one here.

In the book's introduction, Hunt is quoted as having said, "I'm very ignorant of the Reformers..." during a phone debate. It's a shame he didn't study a little prior to walking into the ring.

*As an aside, let me reccommend R.C. Sproul's "What Is Reformed Theology?" as an excellent presentation of the Reformed position.



  • You are correct. Not much interest to me. I think its in the presentation style... at least the web site you pointed out to me was cool. :)

    Now the post on MLF's page on the MacDonaldland figures...terrific!

    The J-Man

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:41 AM, January 18, 2006  

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