Blowing Bubbles From the Bottom

If you think you are up to it, and if you have a cast iron stomach, and if you have not ingested your recommended weekly allowance of piffle over the last few days, you may go here and fix everything.

The short form is that Rosaria Champagne Butterfield — whose book was fantastic, by the way — was invited to speak at Wheaton College. This, all by itself, was sufficient to set off a small protest festival of marginalization and hurt.

I would draw your attention to the last several paragraphs, where the crucial task of telling the gospel story is transformed into a bizarre form of narratival masturbation. The central human predicament, what Luther called incurvatus in se, is transformed into a narcissistic virtue, resulting in a self-righteous circle jerk, only without the sex.

As for the response of Wheaton as an institution, I believe that someone should tell the authorities there that blowing bubbles from the bottom of the pool is not the same thing as breathing.

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Caleb
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Caleb

Have mercy…

Christopher
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Christopher

This right out of the Rachel Held Evans milieu. See her column “Homosexuality, Evangelicalism, and the Danger Of a Single Story.” 
http://rachelheldevans.com/blog/single-story-evangelicalism-homosexuality-butterfield-

Peter B
Guest
Peter B

‘a self-righteous circle jerk’
man…
you go hard.

Tom Brainerd
Guest

“Massey said that he feared that students would be isolated or marginalized by Butterfield’s story of transformation from “radical, lesbian, leftist professor to this morally good Christian,” which could make LGBTQ or feminist students feel that those two identities were “oppositional” or mutually exclusive.”//And wouldn’t that actually have been a good thing?//Isaiah 5:20

Bruce Flanagan
Guest
Bruce Flanagan

Agree whole heartedly with Rev Wilson.

Sylvan
Guest
Sylvan

“Conquer evil men by your gentle kindness, and make zealous men wonder at your goodness. Put the lover of legality to shame by your compassion. With the afflicted be afflicted in mind. Love all men, but keep distant from all men.”
—St. Isaac of Syria


Just pointing out that there’s a way to be right that makes you wrong.  Must you be so disgusting and uncivil in your method of communication?  I thought surely a scholar like yourself could go about discussion with common courtesies and respectful language.

Cheryl
Guest
Cheryl

So what do you think the proper response to the students would have been if it wasn’t to sit down and talk with them?

delurking
Guest
delurking

I’m really  not seeing your problem.  She got to speak; they got to speak.  Is it that you don’t trust the strength of your side’s argument in the market place of ideas?

jeff trexler
Guest
jeff trexler

At some point our sense of compassion for sinners becomes foolishness on our part.  I agree with Doug that the guys running the show at Wheaton seem to have gotten both feet beyond that line.

prayersofadoration
Member

Sylvan, get a little self-awareness.

mikebull1
Member

Sylvan, when somebody wraps a turd in pretty paper, the right thing to do is unwrap it. The turd on Doug’s lips is a taste of the reality these people are trying to hide. If you don’t like what he says with his lips, I guess you don’t know what they do with theirs behind closed doors.

John Rabe
Guest
John Rabe

Phil Ryken left a perfectly fine church for this?

mikebull1
Member

The heart of this matter is that Rosaria’s story is really about the authority of Jesus, not about “her experience.” Just like Moses and Aaron transforming a serpent was really about the authority of God. So, this demonstration is Jannes and Jambres sitting on the steps and saying, “We have serpents, too.” We all know how that ended.

valerieab
Member

Rosaria has a particular knack for going after the refugees from the world. She does it well.                                                                                                                                                     
Doug has a particular knack for going after the apostles from the world. He does it well.                                                                                                                                                     
These are different tasks. They require different gifts and different vocabulary. Our trouble is that we’ve seen few even attempt to do the latter, much less with any skill, so it shocks us. And that betrays how little we know the Bible, because the prophets, the apostles, and Jesus were fluent in such language.

Ellen Keyes
Guest
Ellen Keyes

I could not find a place where the writer attempted to share the gospel.

timothy
Guest
timothy

@Sylvan.
There are plenty of good examples from Scripture of the appropriate use of strong language spoken by Apostles, Prophets and Jesus.  Take your sanctimony and stuff it.
 
 

Jane
Member

delurking, the problem is that it is a shame and a disgrace that such argument as those made by the demonstrating students gained any currency at a CHRISTIAN institution. Had she been speaking at a different institution, it would have been a natural expectation that the depraved side and the godly side both got their airing in the marketplace of ideas. At Wheaton, it is a terrible thing that such a depraved argument as that being made was upheld by a significant number of the students.

Elizabeth
Guest
Elizabeth

Considering Sylvan’s and Valerie’s comments, it would be very helpful, Pastor Wilson, if at some point you would post something to teach those of us who have been brought up or encouraged to think that Christians and especially leaders should never use the type of language you obviously feel comfortable with in certain situations.  When is it appropriate and who is authorised to speak in this way?

Sylvan
Guest
Sylvan

Hmm.  I was pretty sure Colossions 3:8 said “But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth.” but suppose I don’t know my Bible well enough to say…  Also, if one actually reads the lives of early Christian saints, one will find that there are loving ways to confront those who are wrong.    Again, Colossians is helpful… “You are the people of God; he loved you and chose you for his own. So then, you must clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.”  Colossians 3:12 Christians telling other people to stuff it?… Read more »

Sylvan
Guest
Sylvan

I must say though, I’m noticing that you, Douglas, have a fan base so deeply devoted to you that they want you to teach them that it’s okay to speak like you do, and are willing to actually disregard portions of the Bible to exonerate you.  It’s quite incredible, really.

CLeavell
Guest
CLeavell

Here is a quote from John Chrysostom that is instructive.
“For if you speak chastely you shall not be able to bear hard upon the hearer. But if you are minded to touch him to the quick, you are forced to lay the naked facts before him in plain terms.” – Chrysostom 

jeff trexler
Guest
jeff trexler

There is a group of people very active in shaping our national and collective identity who have turned the virtues of tolerance, compassion, gentleness, and kindness into vices.  They use these good things as weapons against weightier disciplines, like biblical sexuality.  In doing so, they turn the word against itself. The average Christian who does these things might need gentle instruction at first, but persistence will call for stronger measures.
The leaders who do this need a firm slap in the face.

timothy
Guest
timothy

@Sylvan.   — Stuff it. — Your milquetoast, lukewarm pap from the Wheaton branch of Laodicia does not cut it with me. Pastor Wilson is too kind in my estimation. The devastation your falling away has done to the Body of Christ in our country is a severe error.   The admonitions to be kind gentle etc are directed at the church for intra-church relations. When apostasy, and sin are evident, the apostle Paul was quite severe–remember his admonition to the church to deliver the incestuous son to Satan that his flesh may be killed?  His admonitions to not suffer… Read more »

Brett
Guest
Brett

I’m a recent Wheaton grad and I’m pretty sure that most students on campus are embarrassed by this and wish those students would chill out a bit.   College students want to feel like they’re making a difference while they’re stuck in the ivory tower, and they love  to protest.  Protests are easy and get media coverage.   Conservatives shouldn’t make the same mistake of the ruling-class media of putting a camera on every protest.   That’s not to say this doesn’t matter, but not as much as we think.

valerieab
Member

Elizabeth,                                                                                                                                                     Pastor Wilson wrote a whole book on the use of strong rhetoric. It’s called A Serrated Edge, and you can pick it up from canonpress.com or from Amazon. If you’d like the Cliff’s Notes version, you can sort of find that starting about a third of the way down this page: http://dougwilson.wpengine.com/tag/chrestomathy/page/138. Actually, you can sort of find it ending there and work your way backward to the beginning of the collection of excerpts.                                                                                                                                                     It says something about the judiciousness of Doug’s employment of this sort of rhetoric that on the rare occasions when it happens, there’s… Read more »

Ree
Guest
Ree

Valerie, Could you instruct us again on the “fake” paragraph breaks? (They look real enough to me on your post!) I confess that I wasn’t one of the ones who paid close enough attention when it was being discussed before, but the other day when I actually decided to post, I wished I had.

valerieab
Member

Ree,
                                                                                                                                                   
Katecho is the one who figured out the magic formula: Insert 150 or more non-breaking spaces. And he kindly left us this comment, from which one might copy and paste them: http://dougwilson.wpengine.com/personal/ashes-ashes-we-all-fall-down.html#comment-38290.

Dan
Guest
Dan

Brett, well said: “College students want to feel like they’re making a difference while they’re stuck in the ivory tower, and they love  to protest.”  So true.  And this has been the case since the 60’s with all the protests coming out of colleges like Berkeley and other temporary shelters from the real world.  For most of these college protesters, once they get out in the real world and have to be responsible for themselves, some of the things they protested won’t be as important, since they’ll have to earn a living, support a family, etc.  I’ve often felt that… Read more »

Ree
Guest
Ree

Hmmmm
                                                                                                                                                   
Like this?

Ree
Guest
Ree

Yay!
                                                                                                                                                   
Thanks, Valerie, and thanks, Katecho!

Dan
Guest
Dan

Sylvan, you said: “I must say though, I’m noticing that you, Douglas, have a fan base so deeply devoted to you that they want you to teach them that it’s okay to speak like you do, and are willing to actually disregard portions of the Bible to exonerate you.”  Okay, so if I’m understanding you correctly, you’re much more outraged at the way Doug calls out sinful behavior than you are about the sinful behavior?  Do I have that right?  Do you not recall Jesus’ anger in the temple courts?  Also, what if we acknowledge for the moment that perhaps Doug can come across pretty strongly at… Read more »

timothy
Guest
timothy

@Valerie and Katecho
 
                                                                                                                                                   
thanks!
                                                                                                                                                   
Thanks!
                                                                                                                                                   
Thanks!
                                                                                                                                                   
(:

timothy
Guest
timothy

Has Ezek. 23:20 been sanitized by translation?
                                                                                                                                                   
Would we all blush at he unsanitized version?
 
                                                                                                                                                 
I ask because the charge of impropriety comes up often enough that we (I) need a good foundation on the uses of stern language in the Bible. I do not enjoy being so forceful and I do not want to slip into error. Paul is a good model . Ezek makes me blush. I will pray about this and turn a cold-eye at ole Zeke’s when my Bible study gets up to him..
 

Elizabeth
Guest
Elizabeth

Thank you, Valerie. 

jim
Guest
jim

I wish there was a way to go back and count how many times Mr. Wilson falls back on the ol’ Ezek verse. If I had to guess it would be right there on the kitchen wall next to “home is where the heart is” plaque. 

Sylvan
Guest
Sylvan

I would venture to say that there is a distinct difference between laying out the evils clearly, as St. Chrysostom said, and indulging in intentionally provocative and unnecessarily disgusting turns of phrase as “narratival masturbation.”  It’s like a kid gleefully throwing as much potty language into the conversation as they can.  It’s immature.  

timothy
Guest
timothy

Its an effective tool for cutting to the heart of an issue when dealing with reprobates.                                                                                                                                                      Where the Apostle Paul turned the incestous son over to Satan for the destruction of his flesh so that his soul could live, Wheaton would refer him to a supportive student group and protest the appearance of the Apostle Paul when he came to set your sorry butts right.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       I am thankful that  Pastor Wilson saw your foolishness and evil called you out on it.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       What’s next Wheaton? Jailing Wilson for defending the faith? I give it a… Read more »

Jane
Member

It might be the case that someone could fall back on the Ezekiel verse too often when it would not be appropriate to do so. However, if the situation at Wheaton, (where students are protesting the testimony of a woman who is providing herself as an example of repentance from sexual rebellion, on the grounds that there are ways to be godly without repenting of blatant sexual rebellion) does not provide a valid case of use of Ezekiel-like rhetoric, my imagination does not stretch far enough to conjure up a case that would. Either the Ezekiel example has no application… Read more »

Sylvan
Guest
Sylvan

Timothy, I am not associated with, have never been associated with, and will never be associated with Wheaton University and have no desire to be.  I do not support the actions taken by the students, and I’m sorry that you think I need to have a vested interest in this dispute in order to think decency is in order.  Your comments rather speak for themselves, though.  Have a nice day!

Sylvan
Guest
Sylvan

*College

valerieab
Member

One other tip re the paragraph spacing: put a regular space before and after the string of nonbreaking spaces. Otherwise whatever character is adjacent to the nbsps will glom onto them like one ginormous word.

Giovanni Maresia
Member
Giovanni Maresia

Valerie, you don’t need to put non-breaking spaces, or to copy and paste anything.
                                                                                                                                                                          Just type regular spaces to push the text to the next paragraph.

valerieab
Member

Yep, that works, too, but I find the cut-and-paste option quicker and tidier.

timothy
Guest
timothy

Sylvan,
 
My mistake. I apologize for my error. I thought you where defending Wheaton and where from there. I was wrong. I apologize for misdirecting my “stuff it” at you.

Giovanni Maresia
Member
Giovanni Maresia

Quicker, eh? Tidier, eh?
                                                                                                                                                                          Not that it bothers me at all, Valerie, but I’ll go and practice on how fast I can type all these regular spaces, and then I’ll get back to you, OK?
                                                                                                                                                                          As for tidy, I do it very tidy.
                                                                                                                                                                          And for your information, Valerie, the fact that you have a way of doing fake paragraph breaks that is valid doesn’t mean my way isn’t valid. This is not a protest. And we’re all loved by God, OK?

valerieab
Member

Dear Gianni,                                                                                                                                                    
Stuff it.                                                                                                                                                      
;^)                                                                                                                                                     
XOXO                                                                                                                                                     ‘
 ~Valerie

Giovanni Maresia
Member
Giovanni Maresia

Dear Valerie, you’re such a great sport! Hysterically funny reply to my attempt at blowing bubbles from the bottom.

Josh McGee
Guest

Would these students have protested if Andrew Sullivan’s was the single story being told on that day?

Jane
Member

Okay, this explains why it hasn’t worked for me. What on earth is a “non-breaking space”?