Letters Have In Fact Arrived

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The Demeanor of Calvinism

I am very much in your debt for introducing me to C.S. Lewis’ English Literature in the 16th Century. The section from which you quote (pages 32-46) is one of the best pieces of historical writing that I have read. The awkward part, though, is that, when read in full, Lewis is warning against the theory you express here: “And here is the central point—this demeanor, this Spirit-given, Christ-exalting demeanor—is an essential part of the program.” I know that you recognize the danger, in other realms, of making “demeanor” the sine qua non of a philosophical system. The essential emotion that binds economic leftists together, from Karl Marx (whose 200th birthday is today) to Bernie Sanders, is compassion for the plight of the oppressed. This emotion is a good and noble one—but when they attempt to build a program centered upon that demeanor, as Lewis says (p 34), “very troublesome problems and very dark solutions will appear.” The “horrors” that ensue are very much not intended by the originators of the new system; nonetheless they are its inevitable “byproduct.”

John

John, thanks. I am not sure there is a clash. All I mean by this is that people who preach forgiveness should actually have received it, and be people who actually extend it.


Our Very Own Apology Tour

Doc Wilson, great article. In your disclaimer, you say this: “Clearly, they say, I must be a defender of sexual offenders because I believe in due process. This is entirely false. I have made this clear in many ways . . .” I wouldn’t even go as far as to say this. A statement like this already puts you in the corner with your hands up. “I’m not defending sex offenders! I swear! Please believe me!” It’s not unlike putting yourself in a position to deny being a racist—as soon you start talking about it, people see that little headline in their brain: “Man denies racism, begs for understanding.” A statement that, in my humble opinion, is more suitable to your position and the famous Wilson rapier wit goes like this: “Clearly, they say, I must be a defender of sexual offenders because I believe in due process. Here’s my response to those individuals: If you really believe that, then I probably can’t convince you otherwise and you won’t believe anything I say anyway short of a full recantation of every belief I’ve ever had. If that’s what you want to hear, you’re going to be disappointed. For the rest of you who like to think reasonably, let’s continue.” This puts your opponents on the defensive and give you the upper hand in the discussion. Just my opinion. Thanks,

Austin

Austin, thanks and let’s get right to the point. I think you are right


I continue to be thankful for your voice on such issues as so-called social justice and the cult of apology. But I mourn the fact that those soft folk who peddle these things in the name of Christ (should I name Russell Moore, David Platt, et al, or does everyone already know of whom I speak?) are unwilling to hear you, even if they do so only so they can formulate a rebuttal. But you have some clout, and I do hope you’ll make some concerted effort to have that influence bear fruit amongst the religious ruling class. The rest of us are banned, blocked, downvoted, unfriended, and called to repent, in order to kill our influence before it even begins. The conversation is controlled, and you’re one of the few who seems to have a chance of still having a voice.

Mike

Mike, thank you. I will keep on keeping on, as we used to say. But there are plenty of folks who want to put an embargo on all dissident voices, and then pretend that the silence is somehow consensus and unanimity.


When I read that Thabiti post on Gospel Coalition I said out loud—hashtag intersectionality. Evangelicals led around like a dog on a chain. How can it really all be this obvious and this boring? That funny Twitter post was a crack of light in the gloom.

Kat

Kat, thanks. And the dress really was cute—but only because it was in Utah and not here in Idaho.


Regarding “Sorry Not Sorry,” plus your recent interactions with Thabiti: As context, I appreciate your willingness to look asquint at the egregious apology culture, and to engage it critically. I particularly respect your insistence on two points: 1) Not apologizing for a gift, even a gift that “privileges” me over another; and 2) Questioning the value of “repenting” from complex or non-concrete sins. (also your pushing to define specific problems instead of the Blob of “racism”) That being said, I’d like to hear you address the following argument, because I think that’s what a number of these “soft evangelical Reformed left” types are really getting at: Premise 1: Most white evangelicals have not been directly racially proud or racially hateful toward brothers and sisters of other ethnicities. Premise 2: However, aggregated acts of racial pride, racial hatred, etc. have created a “system” that has historically held non-white men and women back politically, economically, etc. Conclusion: Whatever we might think about “repentance” as a right response to this, Christians should make efforts to restore men and women of color to more just positions in our legal system, our church leadership, etc. Granting that we have to further define “restore,” address specific circumstances, etc., would you agree with that conclusion in general? If not, why not?

Joseph

Joseph, of course the system needs to grow toward genuine color-blindness. But you cannot do this by cultivating a hyper-sensitivity to color, which is what we are doing now. Our task is to build as just a society as we can, and pulling people over for driving while black is not the way to do it. But putting our thumb on the opposite scale does not “make things even,” it rather sows the seeds of the next round of conflict. The civil rights movement in the sixties got as far as it did because what was being said resonated with the consciences of most whites. What is being said now offends the consciences of most whites, but they keep silent out of fear, and that is the precursor to a big mess—coming to town near you.


I’m nowhere near your level of cultural awareness, but I apparently have followed you long enough to recognize some things you are seeing. I posted the following to FB yesterday: // Me: Online Christian culture seems to be borrowing some plays from the militant progressive agenda. It’s become common to see a sort of piling on, even when we have no connection to a situation or incomplete information. The new norm is shrill outcries from afar, ungracious demands for public penitence, and in general, mob rule. And none of it is a good look for those desiring to advance the Kingdom. My brother’s reply: Going to translate for the lay-folks among us . . .  “Christians” need to stop with the self-righteous indignation and societal judgement on every issue and rather approach them with fervent conviction and love. Me: Certainly that, yes. But I guess I was thinking more broadly in terms of the culture we find ourselves in and who’s influencing who. Francis Schaeffer once said, “Tell me what the world is saying today, and I’ll tell you what the church will be saying in seven years.” Sadly, his timeline needs crunching for our setting. I would amend it to, “Show me the trending hashtags this week, and I’ll tell you what the ‘Online Christian Culture’ will be in a tizzy about next week.” (I know, not as pithy) But a tizzy it will be—sides will be taken, blogs will be written, fingers pointed, subtweets will fly, and in general, the OCC players (not all) will run around breathlessly trying to prove to the world that the church has a relevant message for that issue, too!

Andy

Andy, a hundred amens.


Sexual Pandemonium

Thank you for your post, Mr. Wilson. The sex change and dental work example was really insightful. But where can we get more information, i.e. books, about how to argue well for godly dominion? I didn’t grow up in this matter (most things were assumed), and am anxious to teach my small children these things.

Lindsey

Lindsey, start with Nancy Pearcey’s fine book Love Thy Body.


Regarding Biblicism and Natural Law, if you think back to right about the time Trump was elected, the whole Bruce/Kaitlyn Jenner thing and transgender bathroom laws were right at the front of the stove, bubbling over on high boil, with the sauce dripping down into the flames making spitting noises and generally stinking up the whole kitchen. Now, I’m not going to say this was THE reason Trump won, because that would be wrong. But, I do think the vast majority of the vast American Public recognized it for the load of horse biscuits that it was. (Yes, that was a very poorly mixed metaphor, but I’m going somewhere with this.) I think if the left wants to make this their soup du jour, all we have to do is lower our heads a bit, look over the top of our spectacles and calmly and lovingly say, “Well, God bless your heart, honey. I know y’all have your fantasies you think about late at night when you’re all by your lonesome, but honestly, if you have man parts and that XY chromosome thing going on, no matter how much you fantasize about wearing a bra and panties, you’re still a man cuz the good Lord made you a man. Now run along and stay out of the little girls’ room. And take off those heels. You’re gonna hurt yourself if you ain’t careful.”

Dan

Dan, think they’ll go for it?


As for “Starting in California”. . . well, it’s already started: link

J.P.

J.P. yes. It is a shame that Summit didn’t stay and fight though.


Death Panels Really are a Deal:

Death panels: In agreement with the article and the previous letter from the physician in regards to the angle of lack of personal responsibility driven via third party payers, I like to add another perspective. Given that my veterinary degree required, among other excruciating experiences, a lot of the same textbooks as those of a “real doctor” (i.e. MD) I feel at peace to claim authority on the subject of medical intervention and my opinion is that the whole “death panel” issue will only get worse. Of course in veterinary medicine most clients do not have insurance for their pets. This means that it is common that though I do know a solution to a pet’s problem because of price the owner will opt for euthanasia instead. Bottom line it is a cost-analysis decision; spend $4k on cancer treatment (or whatever) or $350 to euthanize and then another $300 for a new puppy. This is reality and I can live with that. What is also reality, and harder for me to live with, is another angle on this that is just as pervasive—yes, pervasive, as in very common. In this case, the owners come in and the vet either knows what’s wrong but realizes that the care will be very time-consuming and if they charged what it ought to cost (in terms of time value) that the owner would probably think of them as someone who “did not care about the animal but just about the money,” or that even with appropriate care the patient might not do well and then the owners blame them for “not getting them better.” Other times the vet is clueless about what the problem is but does not want to admit it or does not want to take the time to figure out what is going on (very common), so instead they just take a WAG and throw out some sort of problem that “is terminal anyway” and recommend euthanasia. I hear this all the time: “yeah, took Fido in to dr. so-and-so and he said it was ___________ (cancer, organ failure, etc.) and so we put him down.” Never mind the fact that Dr. so-and-so didn’t do a single diagnostic test to confirm this. The point is that euthanasia becomes a cop out for the doctor. It becomes a way for them to seem like they are “doing what’s best for the patient” while in reality they are just being lazy, greedy (only wanting to do the easy money/high return procedures or cases), or covering their own tail (pun intended) when they don’t know or care what is going on. And this is only possible because euthanasia is an option . . . dead dogs tell no tales. So, now that euthanasia of people is an option, what do you expect—them not to use this cop-out?

B.C.

B.C.—in other words, veterinary medicine has been kind of a pilot project.


Slavery, Of Course

Your blog is always enjoyable and thought provoking. Today I’m referencing your “Salvation & Slavery” post. I’m an elder at a local RCA church in Lynnwood, WA (there are orthodox RCA churches, I am glad to report!) and I preach about once a month as well as directing worship. I have a query, and just for context at the outset, I’m fully convinced of the authority, inspiration, and inerrancy of scripture. This last year I’ve done some independent study on the biblical rationales that were provided by both opponents and adherents of American slavery. I’ve read some southern Presbyterians that were “pro” and also “anti” pastors/theologians like George Bourne. Additionally, I’ve read the accounts of many slaves, like Douglass, and they are truly heartbreaking. Especially with the accounts that often highly religious slaveowners seemed as bad or worse than non-religious slaveowners. Ugh. I’m wondering if you have a recommendation for any books (current or older) that provide a solid exegetical case against chattel slavery, and adequately take into account the go-to verses for those that were historically pro-slavery. I know the Bible, taken as a whole, clearly presents the truth of all men created in the image of God, and that there is at the very least an implied trajectory from OT to NT of freedom in Christ and the beneficent treatment of all human beings in our care and sphere. I guess I’m just looking for help on more knotty passages like the one you cited in Leviticus 25:44-46 and such, that appear at first blush to be permitting SOMETHING, even if not to the degree of chattel slavery. I see many parallels, sadly, between chattel slavery and abortion—the primary connection being the treatment of other people as less than fully human. And so I want to be girded with as much apologetic armor as possible both for my own edification and the edification for those I teach. Any help you can render would be appreciated. Blessings to you as you continue your work!

Ben

Ben, this is not exactly what you asked for, but I would recommend Mark Noll’s book The Civil War as Theological Crisis, Eugene Genovese’s book A Consuming Fire, and my book Black & Tan, in that order.


Thank you so much for this article. So very timely and needed. I will say that you might want to take a look at the concept of indentured servitude a bit more as in some areas such as Scottish and Irish indentured servants they were often treated worse than regular slaves being worked to death before their contracts were up. Owned slaves were property that you took care of to keep the value up. A minor quibble though that does not change your message. That said, you have a glaring typo in the last paragraph, or at least I hope so. “They might be crapitalistic greed.” I assume you mean “Capitalistic greed.” Thank you again! Sincere regards, you brother in Christ,

Lee

Lee, thanks and point taken about indentured servitude. And no, that was not a typo. Crapitalism is my name for crony capitalism, as distinguished from genuinely free markets.

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Justin Parris
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Jill Smith
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Jill Smith

Thanks, Justin, I went through all the pictures I could find. Apparently they got Vatican approval, and it has something to do with some Vatican treasures going on display (not, I trust, the ones the models were wearing). I found it a little dull overall–not very edgy, probably because the terms of engagement forbade anything that might slide into blasphemy or mockery. If it were me, I would have let them paint me as a human Sistine ceiling and hang me with precariously tied ropes.

Katecho
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Very pleased to hear that Wilson’s surgery went well, and that he can continue using all of his lymph nodes. Will continue to pray that no follow up chemo or radiation will be necessary.

JP Stewart
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JP Stewart

As for Dan’s comment “Regarding Biblicism and Natural Law, if you think back to right about the time Trump was elected, the whole Bruce/Kaitlyn Jenner thing and transgender bathroom laws were right at the front of the stove, bubbling over on high boil, with the sauce dripping down into the flames making spitting noises and generally stinking up the whole kitchen. Now, I’m not going to say this was THE reason Trump won..” I agree. This was the culmination of Obama’s “fundamental change” of our republic, and would’ve been the equivalent of a bad SNL skit if not so horrifying.… Read more »

Justin Parris
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Justin Parris

“I hope the #neverTrumpers realize this would’ve continued to spread and dominate the news if Hillary Diane Rodham [insert a few male names here] Clinton won.” As one of the movement, (not that it’s the best name, as most of us aren’t “never Trump” so much as “this really isn’t a good idea”) I would say that virtually none of us disregard the totality of what a Hillary presidency would mean. Rather that putting Trump forward as the solution does more long term harm than it does short term good. Being a long term evaluation, as opposed to one with… Read more »

JP Stewart
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JP Stewart

I’m referring to those who were virtue signaling and buying into the left’s critiques of Trump (Russell Moore, Thabiti–who actually supported Hillary, etc.)

Those who opposed him based on his immorality, shifting positions/questionable conservatism, etc. are a different category. I ultimately voted for him (first Republican president I supported in years–had been voting 3rd party), but understood those reservations.

Justin Parris
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Justin Parris

A perfectly understandable position. It is unfortunate that “Never Trump” is such a broad label. Those who didn’t vote for him really come from a few very very different places. A few months ago I had someone attacking me on the basis of being a “Never Trumper” and linking an article talking about John McCain, claiming him a “leader of the Never Trump movement” and attaching him to me. I can’t think of many times at all I agreed with anything the man has to say.

Katecho
Member

Let’s not pretend that Trump isn’t the embodiment of a bad SNL skit. Have Dan and Stewart already forgotten that Trump paraded himself around in a rainbow flag on stage during his campaign? Anyone who thinks that Trump won because he somehow represented a break with the sexual perversion agenda clearly hasn’t seen this video (WARNING: probably not safe for work). That’s the President of the United States of America, with his current legal advisor, Rudy Giuliani. This is who we are dealing with. When it comes to a charge of #neverTrump perfectionism, I’ve previously mentioned actual conditions under which… Read more »

JP Stewart
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JP Stewart

Well Kat, we could always have a candidate like Mormney, who stood for, well, nothing. Or maybe John McCain, a foul-mounted blowhard who was pro gay marriage before it was cool. I freely admitted Trump has plenty of problems. But he also stood up to factions of the left, which explains their seething hatred of him. That’s more than I can say for the milquetoast neo-cons before him. Just watching the MSM convulse for weeks then come up with the most far-fetched conspiracy theories in their coup d’état attempt has been worth the price of admission (a vote). Well, that… Read more »

Justin Parris
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Justin Parris

JP, when Katecho criticizes that throwing around “better than Hillary” doesn’t constitute much of an argument, saying “better than Romney” doesn’t exactly refute the objection. Trump’s standing up to the media also carries with it serious problems. While he rightfully attacks the media when they cover him dishonestly (travel ban), he also attacks the media when they’re covering him honestly (Stormy Daniels). It doesn’t help the fight against bias in the MSM, it sabotages the fight. Though I really didn’t want to get into a Trump debate at large so go ahead and give your rebuttal and I’ll wander back… Read more »

JP Stewart
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JP Stewart

Katecho seems to want a candidate who meets his ethereal criteria and agrees with 95% of his political/theological positions. If that’s the case, he’d vote for very few past presidents, including the Founding Fathers.

That’s all I have to say…I don’t have the time or interest for an extended debate either.

mys
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mys

Never works, sadly JP.
Never Trumpers are wed to the position on the basis of pride.

Justin Parris
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Justin Parris

“Never Trumpers are wed to the position on the basis of pride.”

Attacking the alleged motivation rather than the actual position? Isn’t that what we criticize leftists for?

Katecho
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Stewart wrote:

Well Kat, we could always have a candidate like Mormney, who stood for, well, nothing. Or maybe John McCain, a foul-mounted blowhard who was pro gay marriage before it was cool.

Rehearsing the disqualifications of the other candidates doesn’t do anything to qualify Trump. That’s not how logic works.

I’m not against a pragmatic comparison between qualified candidates, but far too many Christians are leading with the pragmatics and just ignoring the obvious disqualifiers.

JohnM
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JohnM

The problem is he was more like mooning factions on the left. And on the right. And in the center.

Jane
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Trump won because people attached to him a break with the sexual perversion agenda, not because he actually represented it. That sort of thing is what us “NeverTrumpers” were crying in the wilderness about — the fact that way too many people viewed him as the incarnation of their hopes of sticking it to the man in a multitude of ways, despite the evidence.

So I can accept both that Trump won because people were *trying* to make a break with the status quo, and that to identify him as such was a faulty judgment.

demosthenes1d
Member

Jane,

An alternative hypothesis, which I find far more likely, is that most Americans care very little about the “sexual perversion agenda.” A person who associates Trump with anything other than the most vulgar form of sexual libertinism shouldn’t be allowed near sharp objects.

Jane
Member

Sorry, I wasn’t clear. I didn’t mean to imply that the “sexual perversion agenda” was the reason he won, though I realize that’s exactly what I said.

What I meant was that some people convinced themselves to vote for him because they believed he represented an answer to the “sexual perversion agenda,” just like a lot of other people voted for him because they convinced themselves that he represented the answer to whatever other issue they were passionate about — regardless of the historical evidence.

JP Stewart
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JP Stewart

Trump’s perversion is a throwback to JFK and Clinton. While it’s certainly sinful, I wouldn’t expect voters to reject it. I think people forget what was happening in late 2016 with trans mania. The Obama administration gave “transgender bathroom protections” to public schools (something Trump fortunately rescinded). When this was the topic du jour, I went to a local meeting where a husky-voiced man dressed up as a woman and demanded to use female restrooms….and this is a very conservative area. Sin comes in various waves and levels. The U.S. wasn’t ready for trans-everything, but Hillary was planning to follow… Read more »

Armin
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Armin

“Of course the system needs to grow toward genuine color-blindness. But you cannot do this by cultivating a hyper-sensitivity to color, which is what we are doing now. ” I know you mean well by this statement, but color-blindness in terms of racial justice and equity is literally impossible, and the more we strive for it, the more frustrated and bitter we will become. This is because blacks and other minorities simply do not understand the idea of a society based on law and order, in which universalistic principles of justice and fairness are applied to all. They are tribalistic.… Read more »

Justin Parris
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Justin Parris

You place the current average black IQ as though that’s an inherent aspect of race, but that doesn’t fit with the evidence. The Jewish IQ was above average before the holocaust, below average during WW2, and then rose to above average again after the war. Circumstances and culture greatly effect IQ results, both of which are changeable. Generational IQ has a great deal of fluctuation, and given the nature of IQ as an average, is extremely difficult to accurately measure over a significant length of time anyway. The average IQ of 100 in 1968 is not equal to the average… Read more »

mys
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mys

Whether IQ is the basis or not, Justin, it’s hard to deny some of what Armin has said. Particularly this:
“Blacks will never, ever be satisfied with all the things we do for them. ”
That would have been unthinkable to me ten years ago. But now, I’ve lived it. It’s true, and there’s no denying it. Do you agree with that or not?

Justin Parris
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Justin Parris

“That would have been unthinkable to me ten years ago. But now, I’ve lived it. It’s true, and there’s no denying it. Do you agree with that or not?” This is kind of a baffling position. Because you’ve seen some black people over the course of your specific life time not be satisfied, that means that as a race, it’s beyond possibility? No. I don’t agree with it because it not only is it completely without a rational basis, but it’s downright anti-Christian. Anyone can repent. Black people, like all of humanity, is rather inclined not to. That humans on… Read more »

mys
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mys

Justin- First of all, I never said anyone couldn’t repent. I didn’t even mention repentance, as a matter of fact. Are you this poor at reading in all of your arguments? Second, I lol’d at this: ” Because you’ve seen some black people over the course of your specific life time not be satisfied, that means that as a race, it’s beyond possibility?” Coupled with your line above to me, “Attacking the alleged motivation rather than the actual position? Isn’t that what we criticize leftists for?” So, when I see actions of some blacks, you are quick to tell me… Read more »

Jane
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Refusing to be satisfied is something to repent of. Therefore, to say they will never be satisfied is to say they will never repent.

mys
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mys

We could say that about many things (not repenting).
It wasn’t my point, I don’t believe that and you’re engaging in pedantry.

Jane
Member

I didn’t mean to engage in pedantry. I meant to point out why Katecho’s statement that you suggested people were incapable of repentance was justified, because saying people will never be satisfied is exactly equal to saying they will never repent of ingratitude, covetousness, or whatever you want to call the sin of not being satisfied no matter what occurs to satisfy you.

mys
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mys

The blacks I was referring to are likely not Christian, by and large.
There are some who have seen the progress, as it were. Many of them are Christians.
Having said that, speaking in generalities is okay.

JP Stewart
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JP Stewart

“There are some who have seen the progress, as it were. Many of them are Christians.”

Here’s one:
https://soundcloud.com/JesseLeePeterson

Justin Parris
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Justin Parris

“The blacks I was referring to are likely not Christian, by and large.”

Christianity isn’t necessary for black people to avoid one particular sin, so I don’t see the relevance here. But in any event, I think you should remember who’s statement it was you were agreeing with. Armin was speaking about how blacks innately are, specifically because of their race. When you quote his statement and say “this is correct”, yours will carry the same connotations as well, most relevantly here that you’re talking about an element of genetics.

mys
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mys

Good grief, you were the one who brought up repentance Justin…not me, otherwise I agree with you that the presence of Chrisitian faith doesn’t always prevent sin. But you brought up repentance. Now you’re switching it to genetics?
Are you a registered Democrat voter or something with all of this topic switching?

Justin Parris
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Justin Parris

“Good grief, you were the one who brought up repentance Justin…not me, otherwise I agree with you that the presence of Chrisitian faith doesn’t always prevent sin. But you brought up repentance. Now you’re switching it to genetics?” Can you honestly not follow the conversation? It’s looking more and more like you’re just desperate to not engage with the ideas being conveyed. It’s been explained to you multiple times by multiple people why your statements suggested an inability to repent. Read what I said about genetics again. I explicitly was referring to Armin having brought it up, and you quoting… Read more »

JP Stewart
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JP Stewart

I’m with you, but woe to the one who calls out Christian race hustlers for not being satisfied with enough apologies, “reconciliation meetings,” statements, etc.

Justin Parris
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Justin Parris

“First of all, I never said anyone couldn’t repent. I didn’t even mention repentance, as a matter of fact. Are you this poor at reading in all of your arguments?” Do you use ad hominem in all of yours? I’m quite fine at reading thanks. I’m just also capable of considering the logically necessary additional ramifications of words. You said, quote: ““Blacks will never, ever be satisfied with all the things we do for them. ” That would have been unthinkable to me ten years ago. But now, I’ve lived it. It’s true, ” Never being satisfied is a sin… Read more »

mys
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mys

You didn’t say all leftists, I didn’t say all blacks. I never mentioned repentance. I just said I have seen blacks not be satisfied…not with their lot in life (how racist of you) but rather with all whites have done to be not-racist. Now we have TGC inviting women to a “Women of Color” conference that’s being put on. The lolz will never stop. And it will never stop. This garbage is creeping into the main of evangelicalism, and you’re more angry at Armin for rehashing kinism arguments. Think about that. Which philsophy is going to damage the church more?… Read more »

Justin Parris
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Justin Parris

“You didn’t say all leftists, I didn’t say all blacks.” And contextually, my statement makes sense without referring to leftists’ behavior being linked to their identity as leftists. Yours does not. You’re rephrasing yourself to mean “All of the black people who do this behavior, do this behavior.” which not only says nothing of significance, but is in direct contradiction to the man you were agreeing with. Remember context for a moment. What was the chief dispute with Armin? He was saying that these traits were in a direct cause and effect relationship with their race. You agreed with a… Read more »

mys
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mys

I will not attack any other short comings you have, even being a pro wrestling fan.
I specifically said that I did not go along with his IQ stuff. I agreed with a small subset. You’re incorreclty attaching me to the larger part of his argument.
Look, neither of us needs to get testy with the other. We both want to advance the kingdom, we’re just arguing details.
BTW, who did you vote for in last presidential election?

Armin
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Armin

Justin, I thought I was explicitly clear that I had no interest in debating the IQ issue as well as what my reasons were for that. My whole point was that debate on that issue was by and large pointless, in the same way that it’s pointless to debate flat earthers. Maybe I wasn’t as clear as I thought I was, and I’ll need to be more careful about that next time.

Micael Gustavsson
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Micael Gustavsson

So your demand is for you to come here and make statements that are not open for debate? Don’t you think your sense of entitlement on someone else’s blog is just a little bit to… well something?

Jill Smith
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Jill Smith

I seemed to have missed this the first time around. Are you asserting that the intellectual inferiority of the black race (assuming we could get a definition in the first place) is so much an issue of settled science that anyone who disagrees is in the same category as those who dispute a spherical earth? How does this play out? Flat earthers: crackpots who engage in vast conspiracy theories that put them on the opposite side of any expert in the field of astronomy and geology. IQ obsessives: people who cherry pick random and discredited bits of sociobiology in order… Read more »

Katecho
Member

mys should be careful not to fall into the trap of identity politics. Cultural Marxists foment endless class warfare by addressing everyone as part of a fixed and inescapable group, refusing to consider individuals. We need to stop being suckers for this kind of provocation, because it will cause us to fail to recognize allies merely because of the color of their skin, or their economic status, etc. Christ came to bust through these superficial barriers so that we could recognize one another when there is a more fundamental shared unity in Him. I’m not saying that we can’t ever… Read more »

Armin
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Armin

Katecho, that’s all fine and good when everybody’s playing by the same rules. The problem is that for the most part, only white people think this way, and every other ethnic group exploits this for their own ethnic interests. You made a good point about how we can make generalizations. The fact that there are a few blacks here and there who might share your individualist approach does not change the fact that blacks and other minorities, in general, have simply no interest in that. In a football game in which one team has to play by the rules and… Read more »

Justin Parris
Member
Justin Parris

” In a football game in which one team has to play by the rules and the other doesn’t, who’s going to win every time?” Jesus pretty directly demands that even though the world at large will never play by the rules, we are required to. “Winning” in a meaningless earthly sense, was never the goal. “They explain differences in culture, intelligence, propensity toward violence, and voting patterns as well as preferences regarding music and entertainment, mating strategies, and on a macro level, political and economic systems.” Correlation does not imply causation. The faster windmills are observed to rotate, the… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

mys, I think that color-blindedness becomes easier the more things we have in common other than race. A common faith, a similar socio-economic background, parity of education, occupational goals in common, similarity of manners, tastes, and interests–all these make it easier not to notice color. Such people tend to be happy with their lives and are less prone to grievance-seeking. It’s also nice that they don’t expect me to do anything for them!

soylentg
Member

Jill, I would have agreed if you had stopped after “common faith” – the rest of it is irrelevant if the common faith is real.

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

That would have been a good place to stop. Regarding the other things I listed, those are things I have found significant in the absence of another incredibly important bond. With my beloved Ugandans, it is faith first and being children of empire second. We even wore the same school uniforms.

demosthenes1d
Member

This is a serious problem with the “race realist” position, of which Armin appears to hold a particularly uncharitable variation. If you say that blacks in America are unsuitable for our culture because of their low IQ then you prove too much. Research on the Flynn effect shows conclusively that the average IQ of a white American in 1932 would be 80 in the current standardization, lower than the average black person today. Were they unable to understand a society based on law and order? There is additional handwaving toward impulsiveness and an inability to think about the long-term. It… Read more »

Armin
Guest
Armin

See my reply to Justin Parris.

Justin Parris
Member
Justin Parris

“To be honest with you, I’ve sort of grown tired of the whole debate over IQ. To me, it should be as obvious as anything that black people are on average unintelligent.” Translation: You don’t really have any kind of way to deal with the facts given that completely refute your thesis, and what you’re really tired of is people expecting you to support your ideas with anything concrete. “the only other way to understand the true nature of blacks is to look at the data” You mean like the data we just discussed, pointed out was in direct conflict… Read more »

Armin
Guest
Armin

Cool, we can leave it there. Like I said, I’m just tired of the debate. I’ve had it so many times and it’s usually clear to me very early on who is open to having their mind changed on this and who is not. The vast majority of people are not, and my time is valuable, so I have to be judicious about when and where I choose to make the arguments. The truth is, most people can’t be leaders, and most people don’t have the “raw material” to go against the grain in any kind of meaningful way. It… Read more »

Justin Parris
Member
Justin Parris

“Sorry to be so dismissive, but I just don’t see any reason to justify something so obvious as this to someone like you.”

I’m jealous. It must be awfully convenient to not have to answer glaring holes in the ideas you present. It must be even better to not be “someone like me”.

bethyada
Member

your ideas are so dramatically far to the side and you are so unwilling to engage in scrutiny that it begs the question whether or not this is a troll account, designed to paint conservatives in a bad light. 1. I don’t think you should define the Overton Window. It is good to be able to talk about ideas including extreme ones. My only concern is that the comments do not continually address the same tired issues. I think Armin raises some issues that many are feeling. Now I dispute his genetic basis, but he is right to note that… Read more »

Justin Parris
Member
Justin Parris

1. I only care to point out the extremeness of the views insofar as they hint at it being a fake account. A real person is unlikely to take the most acidic and unlikable position on not just one issue, but *every* issue. A troll account will do that every time. I would not much care about the severity of the views if I had no suspicion they were dishonest. 2. Being tired on the issue didn’t seem to slow him down from writing the longest post in the thread, all the while completely avoiding in that long post making… Read more »

bethyada
Member

:)

JP Stewart
Member
JP Stewart

Good points, Bethyada. It’s possible Armin is a troll trying to make conservative Christians look bad. It’s happened before–some leftists showed up a Trump rallies with racist signs, etc. However, I’m not sure if DW’s audience is big enough to make any ripples…unless someone is just targeting Doug. Your first point is spot-on. If we want racial reconciliation, we should build it by working together in ministry–not these never-ending “racial reconciliation” conferences, statements/apologies about things that happened before our lifetimes, etc. This stuff has been going on since at least the 1990s, and Thabiti & Co. still aren’t satisfied. I’ve… Read more »

soylentg
Member

Armin says: It’s kind of like when you’re forced to be around someone with whom you just can’t get along. Sometimes, the best thing to do is to separate. This will have to happen.” When I read that my first reaction was, how fitting that Armin, unless he repents, will spend eternity in the lake of fire with the likes of the Black Hebrew Israelites, a group from the other end of the melanin spectrum but with equally revolting racist views. But then when Armin added this: “And I know that people like Doug understand this. I know that he,… Read more »

Justin Parris
Member
Justin Parris

I would upvote you soylent, but for some reason the system has been denying me the ability to do so for the last month. While I’m “logged in”, the system on my end treats me as logged out, but then my posts get correctly marked as being from a member. Go figure.

soylentg
Member

thanks, its the thought that counts…

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

upvote from me too!

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Justin, they simply couldn’t be. As I understand it, everyone’s IQ is slowly increasing, and black IQs are increasing at a higher rate than ours. “Different population groups are exposed to markedly different environmental conditions, which is why average scores vary. For this reason IQ scores are rising faster in some populations than others (average IQs of Kenyan children were shown to have risen by 26.3 points in 14 years). Similarly, black American IQs are rising at a faster rate than those of white Americans, while Jewish Americans went from having below average IQs at the time of the First… Read more »

Justin Parris
Member
Justin Parris

But Jill, don’t you bother with facts or information. Isn’t it just “obvious?” Time shouldn’t be wasted on “someone like you.”

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Well, Justin, I knew it would be pointless to proceed. After all, I was told a couple of weeks ago that my XY inheritance unfits me for this type of discussion. At least you lack intellectual honesty; I, poor girl, simply lack intellect. It is very chilling when this stuff shows up on a Christian board. ” But let me be clear: It’s okay to notice all of the problems that black people cause and to want them out of your country.” I wonder if Arwin has considered the number of white people–even ordinary white people who are not infallibly… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Your problem is easily diagnosed; for reasons known only to yourself, you loathe black people. You detest everything about them, and you think it a grave injustice that their presence creates a blot upon your landscape. How wonderful it would be, you think, to live an an America full of noble white men and delicate white women, their little golden-haired children gathered about them. It would be pointless to tell you that your attitude is gravely sinful. But even you, Armin, know that it doesn’t fly to approach strangers and whisper, “Do you hate blacks as much as I do?”… Read more »

Armin
Guest
Armin

I know I keep acting like I’m going to disengage, but I feel like I need to respond to this. Jill, I don’t hate black people, and I don’t want to hate them. That is precisely why I’m calling for speaking openly and honestly about their shortcomings as a people in general as well as their incompatibility with western civilization. Everybody says we need to have an honest conversation about race, and yet the minute someone tries to have it, even someone as polite and genteel as, say, Jared Taylor, the whole thing gets shut down and everybody starts throwing… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Armin, perhaps your confiding that you can’t stand how they mispronounce “th” gave me a clue. Your list of grievances, many of them trivial, suggests that you simply can’t stand being around them. (I don’t much like Ranchera music but it doesn’t make me want to start deporting my Hispanic neighbors.) Moving on. You are not prepared to have an honest discussion of race. You are prepared only to state your views that black people are genetically inferior to whites, and that you are not personally willing to share the glories of Western Civ with them. An honest discussion would… Read more »

demosthenes1d
Member

Armin, I don’t have any interest in joining in a dogpile, but I wanted to address your comment that culture is downstream from race. I agree that different populations have different inherent traits that will color their cultural expressions (race is far to coarse to be of help here, at the broad scale, there is more genetic variation between groups in Africa than between all people out of Africa; indeed the difference between Bantu and !kung is greater than the difference between Bantu and English.) However, culture is inherently downstream from cult, not race. Take the Gebusi for instance, they… Read more »

Armin
Guest
Armin

I don’t know anything about the Bantu or the Gebusi, but I will say that your example of the Gebusi actually helps my case. If indeed they underwent a massive change from being a typical violent and murderous African people to relatively civilized, this only happened as a result of the influence of what I would assume were white Europeans. The change didn’t happen on its own; it came through some level of cultural subversion from the outside. Furthermore, how much of this change came about through persuasion rather than sheer strong-armed colonialist-type behavior that white Europeans are so well… Read more »

demosthenes1d
Member

“I don’t know anything about the Bantu or the Gebusi, but I will say that your example of the Gebusi actually helps my case.”

Armin,

The Gebusi aren’t African, they are from New Guniea – Melanesians, though superficially similar to some Africans, are much less closely related to african populations than you are (assuming you are European). Bantu are the larest ethnic supergroup in sub-Saharan Africa. Your response is incoherent because it is sentimental and you haven’t taken the time to educate yourself. There is only one solution to ignorance, and I have offered to help. Best of luck.

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Hi, Armin, as I told you once before, I think you tend to see the world only in categories. You see “black’ and assume unintelligent, impulsive, unable to master rules and laws (though they seen to manage quite well with quite complex football plays), prone to criminality, and likely to go Shaka Zula at a moment’s notice–at least that is what I assume you mean by tribal. You don’t look at the category “black” and think about people who clearly don’t fit those stereotypes. You don’t recognize that blacks are rising in to the middle class, and that their behavior… Read more »

bethyada
Member

Ben: I’m wondering if you have a recommendation for any books (current or older) that provide a solid exegetical case against chattel slavery, and adequately take into account the go-to verses for those that were historically pro-slavery. Ben may be asking too much. We want the Bible to fit in with our modern sensibilities but perhaps we still have much to learn. The abolitionists were historically correct, though at times their arguments may not have been as right as claimed, nor the slavers as wrong as we want them to be. Part of the problem is wanting slavery to be… Read more »

demosthenes1d
Member

This is quite right. The desire to have the bible confirm our moral sentiments is understandable, but it is inviting eisegesis. I think it is clear that American chattel slavery fell short of the biblical standard in a number of ways, and those failures should have been condemned. It is also clear that there are prudential, and possibly good and necessarily consequences reasons for being opposed to slavery in many instances which may lead our magistrates to discourage or ban it (as was done in most of Europe. prior to the beginning of the Colonial era).

mys
Guest
mys

What you wrote here is good. Modern Christians have surrendered, unknowlingly, much ground on the inerrancy of the Word by being so quick to condemn slavery as sinful.
The liberal/pagan rejoinder of: “It’s approved of in the Bible,” is, actually, correct. But most believers have sadly been cowed by the culture, and that occurred before most of us were born, if not all.

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Bethyada, I haven’t read this book but it seems to have excited some controversy.
https://www.amazon.com/Problem-Slavery-Christian-America-ebook/dp/B076KKTK4Z

Perhaps someone here has read it and can comment on whether it says something useful about this subject.

The Commenter Formerly Known As fp
Guest
The Commenter Formerly Known As fp

Joseph said:

Christians should make efforts to restore men and women of color to more just positions in our legal system…

A few questions:

What is a “just position” in our legal system?

If we’re “restoring” men and women of color to more “just positions” in our legal system (whatever that means), how do we know we’re getting qualified people to fill these “just positions” if we’re basing our “restoration” on color?

And finally, has Joseph not heard of Clarence Thomas?

JP Stewart
Member
JP Stewart

It’s scary to see how many “Josephs” are out there and how easily they’re duped. Different groups, races, religions, etc. have been oppressed via war, genocide, slavery, etc. since the Fall. It’s a major part of history. The idea that one group needs reparations, affirmative action and other special treatments 150 years after slavery ended (and after decades of those programs running) is asinine and unprecedented. I know people who came to the U.S. from Cambodia and Vietnam in the 1970s with literally nothing but the shirts on their backs–they’ve now been successful for 2 or 3 generations. For the… Read more »

JP Stewart
Member
JP Stewart

And for the record, Josephs’ fantasy has been happening for some time. The daughter of a very liberal black politician in my area got into Harvard Law School with an average (and I mean truly average) LSAT score.

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

JP, I’ve seen that as well. What I have noticed is intact families who devote every energy to making life better for the next generation. Three families will share a house until there is enough money in the pot to buy another. I wish I had any understanding of how those values could be made attractive to Americans!