On Not Blowing Sunshine

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Introduction:

A few weeks ago, Thabiti contributed to our ongoing discussion of the presidential election and race relations with this post. I responded briefly here, and promised to say more about it later on. It is now later on, and so here I am.Thabiti 3

Productive Discussions:

Thabiti said that he and I manage to have “good conversations about difficult things.” I have the same sensation, and have greatly appreciated his willingness to interact with me as much as he has. It sometimes feels pretty jaggedy, like the two of us were running a three-legged race in the fair, but somehow or other we get across the finish line.

I actually happen to know the kind of pressure that people receive whenever they agree to do anything with us, and after the charitable comments Thabiti made in his last post, I wouldn’t be surprised if his inbox had actually burst into flames. The fact that he would say what he said about me publicly was not unappreciated, especially when I think I know what kind of grief he had to put up with behind the scenes because he had said it. I do not know if we will ever get a chance to have a beer together, but if we do, it would only be right if I were the one to buy. This conversation has to have been far more costly to him than to me—although I am not a full pariah, I can be somewhat pariah-ish—and from this distance the only reason I can think of for him to do it is summed up in the one word integrity.

A Couple of Important Agreements:

I am grateful also that Thabiti and I agree fundamentally on the fact that we have no political solution to the political disease that afflicts us. Christ is our only possible Savior, and the only way out of the terrible place we have gotten to is massive repentance. Our problem as a nation is not that we have differing opinions about politics—our problem is that our consciences are seared. Nothing will do but reformation and revival.

I agree with Thabiti that he and Wayne Grudem are not doing the same thing, only on opposite sides. Thabiti told us how he was going to vote; he did not in any way indicate approval of Hillary, at any level. Thabiti believes that we have narrowed our choice down to two evil options. He believes that we have some kind of expertise in resisting one of them, and no proven skills at all in dealing with the other. That is the kind of stand which could be productive to debate, whether or not you agree, which I don’t.

When someone says he wants to fight a particular evil differently than you do, that is a tactical matter. When someone says that an evil isn’t really evil, that goes beyond tactics.

Suppose someone said that he was going to vote for Saruman over Sauron because he thought Saruman was a “wizard with flaws.” That is a description of someone who is in the process of being seduced. Suppose someone else voted for Saruman, not because he supported Saruman at all, but because he would rather have the final fight with Saruman. This is quite different. It goes without saying that we were going to be in a fight whichever bad guy won. This is a position I strongly differ with, but it is not a position that gets maneuvered into calling evil good and good evil (Is. 5:20).

No Problem Passages:

It is very important for me to reiterate again how much I appreciated Thabiti’s acknowledgment that Scripture contains angular texts on the subject of slavery. This means that Christians who profess that every dotted i and crossed t is part of the God-breathed revelation to us—these texts included—are people who must take this angular reality into account.

I have said this before, but I am not an historical romantic. I am not a sentimentalist about the old South. I do enjoy grits, but that kind of thing has almost nothing whatever to do with why this subject keeps coming around to me. From my perspective, the basic reason I get into these imbroglios is because I want to insist that politics, public-shaming, blog-trolling, name-calling, zeitgeist-riding, luge running down the right side of history, and so on, are all absolutely irrelevant when it comes to the exegesis. The text says what it says, and it would have said that same thing had none of us ever been born.

For one example among many, Hillary has said that on abortion Christians have to get with the program. “Laws have to be backed up with resources and political will. And deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs and structural biases have to be changed.” Let me think about it, no. The Word of God comes to us from outside time and history. It has a transcendental authority. We don’t get to tinker with the truths of God in order to reduce friction for the agenda of liberals.

If we ever admit the principle that a show of progressive hands can determine what Scripture actually says, then we are done. I submit that when Christians start to cave on this principle, it will be a whole lot easier to cave the tenth time than it was the first time. I believe that we are in the process of discovering this grim reality. We are at #7 now and picking up speed. I am wanting to get back to #1or #2. When did we first start apologizing for the Bible? Repentance will have to go all the way back so that conservativism will cease being the “shadow that follows radicalism to perdition.”

In God in the Dock, C.S. Lewis said this: “In fact, we must at all costs not move with the times. We serve One who said ‘Heaven and Earth shall move with the times, but my words shall not move with the times.’”

That is the issue here, and as far as I am concerned it is the only real issue.

On Stumbling the Brothers:

And that brings us to the penultimate point.

Thabiti’s exhortation to me, and the one that I wanted time to reflect on, amounted to this. He believes that I have some weight in my argument about Scripture and slavery when considered in certain contexts. He wishes that I would show greater awareness of the fact that there are in fact other contexts. When I am dealing with homo-jihadists, who argue that the Bible can’t be reliable about sexual ethics because Scripture was wrong about slavery, Thabiti understands (and sympathizes with) my desire to not back away from the reliability of Scripture in any area. Since this is my central motivation, the fact that Thabiti sees what I am attempting means a lot to me. At the same time, Thabiti (rightly) believes he is much more aware of the apologetic barrier that the legacy of slavery presents to evangelism among blacks.

“So I wish Doug wrote in a way that attempted to disarm that audience so that those of us serving in those fields would have a slightly easier time offering an apologetic against slavery’s historical abuses without having a co-belligerent in the gospel seemingly giving contemporary credence to the evil.”

I am genuinely willing to do what I can to make this happen, to get to this result. In the next section, I want to commit to certain things that would demonstrate that I am endeavoring to hear responsible Christian voices like Thabiti’s from outside my circle. I agree with Thabiti that it is a desirable result. But before getting to that, I do want to say that I have been writing to disarm critics on this subject for many years. That might produce the objection that I am not very good at it, which is as may be, but that is what I have wanted. So believe it or not, the rhetorical stance I have taken has for many years been attempting this. Now if Thabiti knew that I have a picture of Stonewall Jackson on the bulletin board in my office, this claim might be, to use Thabiti’s phrase, “a special multi-flavored variety of insane.” But here is my thinking, at least a part of which I believe Thabiti recognizes. In his post, Thabiti said this:

“And, there’s a side of me that likes talking to Doug because he stands flat-footed on what he thinks.”

When I am dealing with black adversaries, black friends, and black parishioners (and yes, I have all three), the one thing nobody thinks after our exchanges is that I am blowing sunshine at them. This is a real problem I have seen many times, and the thought of doing this myself gives me the fantods. This is a running characteristic of whites who are racked by the pleasures of white guilt—they lie for the greater good. They don’t tell the truth. They fudge. They maneuver to the preferred outcomes. They run the affirmative action office in such a way as to cast a shadow over every genuine black achievement. They blow sunshine.

How many black brothers in Christ have walked away from yet another universally-affirming conversation with an unctuous white guy feeling like they were just handed a participant ribbon? How many times has this thought suddenly appeared in the thought bubble over their head—I wonder what he really thinks?

In books on writing, one of the pieces of advice that recurs is advice that warns writers away from vanity publishers. How do you know you are dealing with this kind of trouble? The answer is easy—the feedback you get always runs along the lines of “this is fabulous!” It doesn’t matter what you turn in to them, so long as they think you have the money, it keeps on getting fabulouser.

This illustration is from the world of writing, but the larger point is about flattery. The same problem arises, for example, in the sexual arena. “To keep thee from the evil woman, From the flattery of the tongue of a strange woman” (Prov. 6:24). Flattery works in every area because people like to hear it. But they also usually know that something is off.

But in this area, we are not just dealing with things that occur on the tawdry side of town. The same temptation arises in ministry (including the important ministry of racial reconciliation). The apostle Paul reminds the Thessalonians that his approach to them was not like that. “For we never came with words of flattery, as you know, nor with a pretext for greed—God is witness” (1 Thess. 2:5, ESV).

It is my view that a significant part of what now goes under the name of “white privilege” is actually the suffocating fog of white flattery. When I have a conversation with a black man, I want it to be a conversation with a man who could be wrong by a man who could be wrong. We find out which it is by talking, and in that talking by trying to say what we actually think.

This is what it means to speak the truth in love. It may seem inflammatory to some, but I have had good experience in seeking to speak to my black brothers in Christ with a deliberate combination of love and honesty. Everyone these days is good with the love part, but they freak out over the honesty part. You could be, they say, honestly mistaken. Should you risk it? Your mistake might hurt a feeling out there. Yes, that’s right. I could be mistaken, and often have been. Sue me. I may not always be accurate, but I always want to be. I am always trying to be.

We live in a time when many people (including many Christians, sad to say) are as indignant as a room full of wet cats about anything. Just go on Facebook. People had their feelings hurt because somebody was publicly insensitive about: introverts, adoptive parents, lactose intolerance, breast feeding, and so on, and so somebody writes a long screed setting a bunch of other people straight. But this approach actually keeps such issues inflamed. The swelling never goes down. People are rude and thoughtless sometimes. That’s no reason to get counseling for thirty years.

When the issues are more objectively serious (race relations, transgenderism, etc.) the same inflammation techniques get similar results. The way we are currently handling race relations in this country is precisely what is keeping those relations inflamed. I believe that all of us need to stop taking lessons on how to deal with racism and the fallout from racism from the secularists who do not know God, and who do not want to know God. Their approach is not reliable.

I want to stand with Thabiti in the resurrection, and I want to have been in fellowship with him before we get to that resurrection. I want to stand with Thabiti now, for the gospel, and I never want to throw an unnecessary stumbling block in the way of that gospel—for anyone, black or white. I believe that I have trusted voices in my life that would tell me if they believed I was doing that. But thus far that has not happened.

So here it is in a nutshell. If we do not have an infallible and absolutely authoritative word from God in Scripture, fully authoritative on everything it addresses, angular texts included, then we have no gospel at all.

Yeah, But . . .

But someone in Thabiti’s position could say that it doesn’t help responsible black Christians to know that Wilson is “a straight shooter” if they can’t shake the feeling that I am shooting at them. So what do I intend to do that would demonstrate that reasonable cautions and admonitions from someone like Thabiti really matter to me? And that would of course include this last set of admonitions.

The first would be my personal assurance that my interactions with Thabiti have affected the way in which I have sought to tackle this topic. I know that this is simply a self-report, but I do believe that I have shown a willingness to take public action in this regard—for example, here and here.

Second, I want to give a public assurance that whenever I write on race relations, I am not “winging it,” typing whatever comes into my head. I am seeking to be deliberate, careful, and constructive. My interactions with Thabiti have really been helpful to me in how I write. There really are angles that don’t occur to me beforehand, and I am committed to being quick to listen for them. I do confess that I am not quick to listen to men who spend their time yelling about my racism, but I do listen to careful men (like Thabiti).

Third, if someone ever puts together a Christian conference on racial reconciliation that commits to a genuine conversation about race, and I am invited to it, I would make every effort to be there. I know that some people would say that this is like inviting Typhoid Mary to address the attendees at a Center for Disease Control conference, and so I know that I will never be invited to anything they put together. But that works out, because I don’t want to be part of the racial reconciliation industrial complex. You can’t really have a conversation with a hustler, or with someone whose income depends on things staying inflamed. Eric Hoffer’s comments come to mind—first a movement, then a business, then a racket. But if biblical people decide to risk having a conversation about what we really need to do to advance the biblical imperatives concerning racial harmony, I would love to be part of it. Deal me in. Racial harmony? I am for it.

And last, when it comes to this topic we have sought to maintain a public and standing invitation to bring our critics here to Moscow, pay their way, provide them with a good venue for addressing our people, provide them with an honorarium, put no restrictions on what they would say, and show them good hospitality. This kind of invitation has been extended to hostile critics like Anthony Bradley, and so of course if someone like Thabiti were ever willing to come, we would love to have him address us.

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Rob Steele
Rob Steele
5 years ago

I am not a full pariah

False modesty.

I’ve been a fan for years and have never seen you treat a subject or interlocutor so gently and carefully. How pleasant for brothers to live in unity!

Elros
Elros
5 years ago

“Third, if someone ever puts together a Christian conference on racial reconciliation that commits to a genuine conversation about race, and I am invited to it, I would make every effort to be there… But if biblical people decide to risk having a conversation about what we really need to do to advance the biblical imperatives concerning racial harmony, I would love to be part of it. Deal me in. Racial harmony? I am for it.” Amen. I think another key thing that should be discussed in this kind of conference is an open and honest conversation on closed borders… Read more »

Nathan Tuggy
Nathan Tuggy
5 years ago
Reply to  Elros

I recently stumbled across a rather eye-opening verse in Malachi. Chapter 3 verse 5 lumps five sinners together as those that do not fear God: sorcerers; adulterers; perjurers; oppressors of “wage earners” (NKJV), widows, and orphans; and those who turn away aliens. A “not born here” attitude toward outsiders wasn’t even appropriate for citizens of the only authorized theocracy. How much less is it appropriate for believers living in modern nations to support turning away those from other countries, some of whom may be believers themselves? Something to think about.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  Nathan Tuggy

A first step would be an acknowledgement of the difference between guests and invaders.

Luke Pride
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

Old Testament had a clear difference between sojourner and forefinger

Eagle_Eyed
Eagle_Eyed
5 years ago
Reply to  Nathan Tuggy

Yikes. Not the greatest exegesis.

This verse is specifically condemning oppressors who exploit and deny justice to various classes of defenseless individuals already living in the land, not a command for the nation to take in foreigners or lose their national identity. The landowner must pay his alien laborer for the work the alien does. To not do so would be unjust. But he doesn’t have to grant him citizenship or access to his daughter.

Nathan Tuggy
Nathan Tuggy
5 years ago
Reply to  Eagle_Eyed

OK. So it’s fine to have open borders as long as those who come in aren’t considered citizens but are also not illegally present? Interesting, as I’ve never heard anyone suggest this as a policy, but I’m not sure I can argue with that. As far as marriage, though, the Israelite restrictions on intermarriage came from their nature as the covenant community, not their nature as a nation, and are replaced by the explicit NT commands for believers to marry only other believers. A Christian from Syria can marry a Christian whose ancestors were from Germany. As far as national… Read more »

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  Nathan Tuggy

I’ve not seen anyone opposed to “open borders” argue in favour of doing away with business and tourism visas. Of course we should welcome sojourners, but that doesn’t mean we should welcome invaders.

(Note specifically that illegal immigration exerts an anti-native influence on the USA political system, regardless of voting patterns.)

Nathan Tuggy
Nathan Tuggy
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

Business and tourist visas don’t allow employment. (Or long-term residence.) “You can come, but you can’t stay, and you can’t earn anything while you’re here” doesn’t line up. Or should the Egyptians have told Jacob’s family to go back to Canaan after six months?

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  Nathan Tuggy

If you recall, by the end of it, the Egyptians were willing to pay quite a bit to get rid of the Israelites.

I don’t think you’ve yet made the case for a Christian obligation to allow foreigners to displace natives.

Nathan Tuggy
Nathan Tuggy
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

The Israelite obligation to sojourners was founded on their own history of being sojourners. If God’s chosen people living and working in Egypt were a problem for the natives, what does that tell you about the natives?

mkt
mkt
5 years ago
Reply to  Nathan Tuggy

Except those sojourners didn’t build mosques and/or commit terrorist acts against the natives. Heaven help them if they tried that in theocratic OT Israel.

The “obligation to sojourners” always breaks down when you apply it to the pluralistic, modern U.S. And many of those who try to apply it are horrified by other realities of the OT.

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  mkt

And many of those who try to apply it are horrified by other realities of the OT. That’s really rich. These guys all want the “nice” parts of the OT (which they’ve mostly invented out of whole cloth), but would be horrified if anyone suggested implementing the vast majority of OT practices. They think it’s crystal clear that we’re obligated to turn our nation over to a billion people from the Third World because “you shall not oppress the stranger.” But “if a man has sex with a man they shall both be executed” has absolutely nothing to teach us… Read more »

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago

Not that I think we should be executing homosexuals.

I don’t. I’m not a theonomist.

But I also don’t think we should be turning America into a Third World country.

Roger K.
Roger K.
5 years ago

Why aren’t you a theonomist?

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  Roger K.

A lot of reasons, but it’s too late to go into most of them now. For one, I don’t think we need to build a separate house that our wives and daughters have to live in while they’re on their period. For another, if we followed OT law, we’d allow polygamy, and allowing polygamy is a horrible idea. It will lead to social unrest, all kinds of problems from inbreeding, chaos, and eventually Third World status. But I will say that most self-proclaimed theonomists are actually no such thing; most are actually extremely antinomian. Like most Christians, they like some… Read more »

Dabney Redivivus
Dabney Redivivus
5 years ago

Does this mean you put no stock in the tripartite division of the law: civil, ceremonial, moral? Honest question.

mkt
mkt
5 years ago

I’m not going to answer for 40, but remember that’s a man-made distinction, even if it’s sometimes helpful. Some OT laws overlapped into different areas, so that distinction can get messy. James Jordan had some helpful lectures on this many years ago (in response to Bahnsen). As for people saying we should welcome sojourners in the U.S. or Europe because of certain passages, realize they’re being extremely selective theonomists. They’d never want to put anyone to death for adultery, homosexuality, bestiality, etc. And as I mentioned earlier, they’re being very naïve if they think OT Israel would welcome people who… Read more »

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago

No, it doesn’t. But I don’t get too hung up on that stuff, frankly. And as mkt, points out, there’s a whole lot of overlap, especially between the civil and moral, but among all three. Like the Sabbath. God ordered Israel to execute a man for picking up sticks on Saturday. Most “theonomists” say that was ceremonial, and doesn’t apply now. But “keeping the Sabbath day holy” is one of the Ten Commandments, which are supposed to be for all time. So it’s pretty hard to say it’s ceremonial. But we could not have anything close to our modern way… Read more »

Roger K.
Roger K.
5 years ago

There does seem to be a Judaizing element there; Rushdoony, if I recall, even advocated adhering to the food laws. Also, I always thought the knee-jerk disdain for ‘natural law’ I read about by theonomists was a consequence of their (Calvinist) belief in “sin nature”. Ascribing ontological existence to sin -making it the opposite of good (dualism)- nature itself becomes “sinful”, so natural law then would need to be jettisoned. Yet, the concept of ‘equity’ is inevitable, which would mean some kind of natural law theory. Kinda hard, too, to call sodomy ‘unnatural’ or ‘a sin against nature’ if you… Read more »

katecho
katecho
5 years ago

40 ACRES’s attempt to boil down theonomy reveals as much ignorance as his attempt to boil down Wilson. Theonomy evokes an emotional response among the lazy, in the same way as the word theocracy. Someone like Bahnsen was certainly not attempting to merely recapitulate ancient Israel. Theonomy has the goal of recognizing the principle behind each of God’s laws in the Old Testament (even the cleanness laws) in order to honor the principle. Theonomy is an attempt to deal seriously with God’s instruction and wisdom in the Law, as a lamp to our feet, even in the civic realm. It… Read more »

Roger K.
Roger K.
5 years ago
Reply to  katecho

Theonomy isn’t just ‘noting’ that there are ‘principles’ behind Old Testament law. If that were all it was, then a lot more Christians would be ‘theonomists’ (pretty much anyone who’s not a dispensationalist). The difficulty is the “rhyme or reason” and the “rummaging”, as you say. Why should some OT passages apply to present day civil law, and others, not? Who gets to make that call, and by what authority? We’re not only presented with laws, behind which are certainly principles, but also examples of how these laws play out. When Ezra and Nehemiah ripped out their beards, and “sent… Read more »

katecho
katecho
5 years ago
Reply to  Roger K.

Roger K. wrote: Theonomic hermeneutics posits continuity unless discontinuity can be explicitly demonstrated from the NT. It’s not simply a take it, or else leave it, hermeneutic. The question is not, “are we going to muzzle our oxen, or not muzzle them?” The question is what is the principle behind muzzling or not muzzling oxen, and how are we going to obey that principle today. The question is not whether our neighbor owns a donkey, but how are we going to restrain ourselves from envy, in principle. Roger K wrote: Why should some OT passages apply to present day civil… Read more »

katecho
katecho
5 years ago

40 ACRES wrote: And the parts of the Bible that prohibit interracial marriage? “Yes, interracial marriage was wrong back then. But Israel was a physical representation of the Church, and now those passages don’t mean interracial marriage us wrong – they mean we shouldn’t marry unbelievers.” Judging from his nonsense, 40 ACRES probably thinks the prohibition against being “unequally yoked” has to do with racial mixing too. If interracial marriage was “wrong back then”, why did Moses marry a Cushite woman without any rebuke from God. Furthermore, why was Miriam cursed, by God, with leprosy (like snow) for questioning the… Read more »

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  katecho

And why was Ruth allowed to marry Boaz

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago

In the hope that Boaz would constrict her?

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

Constrict?

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago

Squeeze. Like Boa Constrictor.

katecho
katecho
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

It’s too early in the week for humor, isn’t it? :-)

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  katecho

It is never too early. Without humor as my default mode, I would withered on the vine decades ago. But that was a feeble one, I do admit!

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean
Wesley Sims
Wesley Sims
5 years ago

Could you imagine if America, when she’s on one of her nation-building expeditions, followed OT Israelite warfighting doctrine? It might actually be effective, then.

Wesley Sims
Wesley Sims
5 years ago
Reply to  Wesley Sims

Perhaps we could adapt events from King David’s life and base military rankings on how many enemy foreskins you deliver?

MrsMac
MrsMac
5 years ago
Reply to  mkt

With all due respect, reading through the OT, listing all the kings that did evil in the sight of the Lord, I don’t think they were really following God’s law. There may not have been mosques, but there certainly were pagan places of worship, they didn’t need to commit terrorist acts, because it seemed the people where too happy to follow the pagan Gods. The ‘good’ kings would tear most the idols down and run the evil doers off, but never completely eradicated the pagan worship.

mkt
mkt
5 years ago
Reply to  MrsMac

That may be true, but it has nothing to do with what I said. I was talking about modern American Christians saying we should accept all immigrants based on a few OT passages. Israel’s pattern of continual rebellion has nothing to do with that.

Obviously the OT kings and people who followed pagan practices weren’t following the letter or spirit of the law in any way.

mkt
mkt
5 years ago
Reply to  mkt

Just a wild guess, but Moses & Co. probably wouldn’t just look the other way when this kind of stuff happened: http://www.breitbart.com/london/2016/08/15/calais-locals-warned-to-stay-away-from-main-roads-as-migrants-smash-vehicles/

Eagle_Eyed
Eagle_Eyed
5 years ago
Reply to  Nathan Tuggy

Another example of God directing the Israelites to treat foreigners with dignity and love does not prove open borders. Christian love does not necessitate one nation taking in substantial numbers of another nation anymore than it necessitates someone taking in numerous homeless vagrants into his own house. You won’t find passages supporting your globalist presuppositions because such a system would be destructive and against God’s order. Generosity does not require being taken advantage of. Likewise, just because it isn’t forbidden to have your daughter marry a foreigner doesn’t mean you have to allow this to occur either. Paul’s commands about… Read more »

Elros
Elros
5 years ago
Reply to  Nathan Tuggy

Another big thing is that Jews interpret these “aliens” to be converts. These would have been other Near Easterners (Semitic peoples) who would have a much easier time of assimilation. Much like in America’s past as other Northwestern European ethnicities did. So really it falls under which borders policy (% of citizens allowed to be immigrants) better accomplishes the common good for the nations involved. And the kings of the nations in Revelation 22 are certainly not kings of globalist “countries”. The evidence is that not much assimilation happens as you get further and further away in similarity from NW… Read more »

JohnM
JohnM
5 years ago
Reply to  Elros

?? Why would the founders have been better off heeding advice that proved to be so wildly wrong? And when it comes to the comment about complexion, baffling? Did complexion have a different usage then, or had Franklin never seen a German?

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  JohnM

Wrong? German immigration deeply changed American culture and politics. The effects are starkly visible even today.

JohnM
JohnM
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

The claim was the Germans would never adopt our language (English) or our customs (American) – they did both. The insinuation was Germans have a different complexion than the English – they don’t.

It’s up to you to explain how German immigration *deeply* changed American culture and politics, and describe where the effects are *starkly* visible even today.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  JohnM

To pick a trivial recent example, look how Trump’s support in the Republican primaries was strongest in the original 13 colonies and weakest in states dominated by German immigrants. This pattern isn’t new; the Midwest has voted economically to the left of other rural areas for decades due to its German/Scandinavian influence.

To pick another example, consider where kindergarten came from.

JohnM
JohnM
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

“look how Trump’s support in the Republican primaries was…..weakest in states dominated by German immigrants.” You mean like, Texas, Oklahoma, Utah, Idaho, and Wyoming? Those states aren’t so German. And Technically of course you mean “dominated by descendants of German immigrants”. Not too many of the first generation there for a while now. :) You need to bear in mind the Midwest is big, fairly diverse, region, and then be more specific when you make reference to voting patterns, etc. It’s not the same everywhere. Kindergarten is a fair example of a German import. But then it wouldn’t matter to… Read more »

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  JohnM

Utah has significant Scandinavian admixture, so that’s slightly different. Texas had their favourite son Cruz, so different story there, too.

Nevertheless — http://static1.businessinsider.com/image/522c791769bedd383969647c-1200/german-ancestry-map.jpg

Elros
Elros
5 years ago
Reply to  JohnM

It took them until the 1950’s to fully adopt English, and they were a minority. So you think Hispanics will adopt our customs by 2200 even though they will be majority at some point in this century? And I already told you that other NW Europeans were the best at assimilating, they still didn’t get it when it came to limited government. Also, since we know of New England’s preference for bigger government, even some of the English didn’t want limited government either. The evidence on assimilation and preference for government size is quite clear. Mass immigration will lead to… Read more »

JohnM
JohnM
5 years ago
Reply to  Elros

Unless you are talking about some religious minorities, locally, or immigrants, and in some instances their children, no it didn’t take Germans until the 1950’s to fully adopt English. You should remember there was heavy German immigration into the U.S. right up until WWI. I said nothing in reference to Hispanics. “Also, since we know of New England’s preference for bigger government, even some of the English didn’t want limited government either.” Which might ought to make you rethink if it has that much to do with national origin in the first place. Pretty much all the regions of the… Read more »

Elros
Elros
5 years ago
Reply to  JohnM

“Unless you are talking about some religious minorities, locally, or immigrants, and in some instances their children, no it didn’t take Germans until the 1950’s to fully adopt English.” The Germans in Pennsylvania Franklin was talking about. Despite the others that more quickly assimilated, it illustrates the point that assimilation is not a sure thing, ever. You said Franklin was “wildly” wrong, and you later said the evidence is that other NW Europeans did adopt our customs or fully assimilated. I’ve already shown why that’s not the case, even for those that learned the language quickly. The Germans and Scandinavians… Read more »

JohnM
JohnM
5 years ago
Reply to  Elros

You have not shown that Germans and Scandinavians never understood limited government, you’ve merely claimed it. Of course you won’t find that many Germans or Scandinavians in the U.S. today, though you’ll find plenty of Americans of German or Scandinavian descent, their ancestors having assimilated long ago. I think we should not make America so enticing to illegal immigrants. They’ll assimilate into the entitlement state we’ve created alright. That’s the problem. Your reply in reference to New England is ad hominem denigration and not an answer to the point. I’ll disregard Pew and believe people really want less government when… Read more »

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  Nathan Tuggy

As far as marriage, though, the Israelite restrictions on intermarriage came from their nature as the covenant community, not their nature as a nation.

Mumbo jumbo and double talk.

So Israel wasn’t a chosen nation?

(Insert eyeroll here…)

The nation was the covenant community, and the covenant community was the nation.

Wesley Sims
Wesley Sims
5 years ago
Reply to  Nathan Tuggy

Can we talk about the forcing of Israelite customs on those sojourners?

What about the allowance for keeping the sons of sojourners and aliens as permanent slaves, whereas Israelites, countrymen, were to be treated the as a hired man who regained his position at the Jubilee?

Nathan Tuggy
Nathan Tuggy
5 years ago
Reply to  Wesley Sims

Sure. What about ’em?

If we were to reintroduce indenture, this would be relevant, and would be a tough question, but otherwise I don’t see how to translate that to anything that makes sense. (And while it’s possible indenture might be workable today in principle, in practice it’s politically impossible.)

Wesley Sims
Wesley Sims
5 years ago
Reply to  Nathan Tuggy

Slavery is not the point. It’s the fact that the OT Law still differentiated between an Israelite and a sojourner. You brought up Ex. 12 in your response to Eagle_Eyed, and the specific passage around verse 49 illustrates that any ole sojourner you could meet on the street did not have equal position to an Israelite. Now, a sojourner could be circumcised and fully assimilate which is to be taken as becoming like a native, but that’s a pretty big step. Your “A ‘not born here’ attitude toward outsiders wasn’t even appropriate for citizens of the only authorized theocracy.” is… Read more »

Nathan Tuggy
Nathan Tuggy
5 years ago
Reply to  Wesley Sims

That’s fair. The Exodus passage was careless. I think the passage(s) in Numbers do still apply, although perhaps not so straightforwardly.

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  Nathan Tuggy

Whether or not sojourners were “welcomed” in Israel had a lot to do with their race/ethnic group.

bethyada
5 years ago
Reply to  Nathan Tuggy

I think these verses are worth thinking about. Not certain what the solution is but some random thoughts. In Malachi and elsewhere God talks about his care of orphans etc. One needs to remember that they are the oppressed. So while God cares for the poor (because of oppression and bad circumstances) Proverbs warns the lazy will become poor. As such we need to see a principle. A widow who can’t provide for herself in ancient Israel is not necessarily the same as the widow with a large insurance payout, or a single mum who was promiscuous despite admonitions for… Read more »

katecho
katecho
5 years ago
Reply to  bethyada

Good thoughts. Socialist systems necessarily attract abuse because they appeal to charity as a cover for the misuse of law (force) to plunder from a third party while appearing to give “generously”. bethyada wrote: Can not a government refuse to give any benefits of this kind but force the sojourner to depend on the charity of individuals? I would answer the question even more broadly than it was asked. I believe civic government has jurisdiction in the sphere of justice, and not in the sphere of charity. So a government ought to refuse to had out benefits (legalized plunder) to… Read more »

ME
ME
5 years ago

This is quite a delightful discussion to bear witness too.

Just one thing, heaven forbid I ever agree with a certain political candidate but I just want a put a bug in someone’s ear regarding, “religious beliefs and structural biases have to be changed.”

“Religious beliefs ” does not necessarily refer to doctrine or theology. So when one mentions religious beliefs that should be changed,one is often referring to a whole set of wrong headedness that really has no scriptural basis at all. Yes indeed, those things do need to be changed.

Andrew Kelly
Andrew Kelly
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

It’s pretty clear, though, that Hillary is not addressing wrong headed religious beliefs. She is addressing religious beliefs that oppose one of her pet projects: the mass butchering of children.

ME
ME
5 years ago
Reply to  Andrew Kelly

It is not “clear” at all.

It seems to me that most people are more interested in just throwing stones at the abortion issue than in actually discussing strategies on how to fix it. So, hyperbole away…. but nothing will ever change.

Steve H
Steve H
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

What beliefs may these be?

ME
ME
5 years ago
Reply to  Steve H

Those would be some perverse and distorted beliefs often touted on this very blog by those claiming they have a scriptural basis for things like racism. Would you like to scroll down a few comments and read about how Christ Himself allegedly called people dogs?

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

You yourself have chosen to ignore Scripture to make a mockery of justice.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago

Effective racial reconciliation will involve doing things that a lot of people today would call “oppression”.

Luke Pride
5 years ago

On Almost every policy he is more in line with biblical government than Hillary, not just a couple social issues. If we conclude we cannot support a political leader because he is not a Christian we will have to do away with many decent government leaders down through governers, sheriffs, generals and comptrollers. The question is why is this nonchristian politician who does not live by Christian morals and is honest about it not at least analyzed based on his political positions and his policy of not persecuting Christians? I’m all for there being some limit to the immorality of… Read more »

katecho
katecho
5 years ago

Doug Wilson wrote: Racial harmony? I am for it. It seems that we have some regular commenters on this blog, such as 40 ACRES, Barnabas and ashv(maybe?), who are not for racial harmony at all. Or, if they are for it, racial “harmony” is only possible through segregation and minimized contact between the races. This is the cynical attitude that says the only way to ever be “good neighbors”, under any context, is to have a really tall fence. Of course we know that’s not the same as actual racial harmony, or loving one’s neighbor. The problem really comes down… Read more »

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  katecho

I don’t reject racial harmony as a goal. Are you saying that good fences don’t make good neighbours? When Jesus said “It is not right to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs”, who was he calling dogs, and why?

What examples of racial harmony would you suggest we emulate or learn from?

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

“What examples of racial harmony would you suggest we emulate or learn from?”

Slightly off topic: It occures to me that the babylonian system of integrating the isrealites in the book of Daniel was better at produceing racial harmony than the ending of segregation in America.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago

The Assyrian one was even more successful.

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

I need to look into both more, as a further aside is there amy modern country that has an integrarion policy along with or as part of their immigrarion policy?

ashv
ashv
5 years ago

The only successful integration policies seen in history seem to involve breaking up immigrant communities and preventing any cultural expression of the immigrants’ culture of origin.

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

I think it was Demo D who recently mentioned the effects of “boiling off the top” people in a commuity. Break the immigrants apart from their natural leaders, so their leaders are more quickly integrated and the rest loose their culture as their community either integrates or deteriorates.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago

Right. Successful integration means destroying immigrant culture.

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

Segregation on the other hand would preserve immigrant culture, which would make them colonists rather than immigrants.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago

Sure. A society organised to be multicultural is explicitly different from one designed for a homogeneous population, with different needs and design problems.

katie
katie
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

What do you think of Indian Brits? They seem well integrated into British society, and they brought the gift of curry.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  katie

What about them? (You make a good point, though – assimilation always makes changes in the culture the immigrants become part of. )

katie
katie
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

It seemed to me an example of successful integration without wholly destroying immigrant culture.

ME
ME
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

How can you take such a beautiful passage so out of context?

“Yes, Lord,” she said, “but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table. Then Jesus answered, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour.”

Christ is NOT calling anyone dogs. It is the disciples who ask Jesus to send the woman away.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

It is a beautiful passage, but what do you do with “But he answered and said, I am not sent but to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 25Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me. 26But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs”

ME
ME
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

“It is a beautiful passage, but what do you do with “But he answered and said…”

Well obviously what you do with that beautiful passage is turn it into something ugly and use it to validate your own racism and stupidity, Jilly. How silly of me to forget what blog I was on.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

I am sorry that you think I am racist and stupid. But my point is that we can’t just cut out the parts of Jesus’s words that we don’t like. It has always troubled me that our Lord said that first part because it is hard for me to think He would ever refer to people as dogs. I don’t know what He meant although it has been explained to me that by dogs He meant people who were outside the covenant nation. But I guess the point I was making is that when we have a passage that is… Read more »

ME
ME
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

There is nothing troubling about it. The only thing that is troubling is that there are people in the world who chose to misunderstand those words and try to use them to justify their own hatred.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

I have thought prayerfully about your remark that I used scripture to validate my own racism and stupidity. ME, I have never spoken to you in such a way that calling me racist and stupid is a fair response. I can take honest disagreement and criticism. But I have trouble dealing with a sister in Christ who speaks so unkindly and with so little provocation. Do you think you can interact with me without using insults like this? I am going through a very difficult time in my life right now. The last thing I need is to find hostility–not… Read more »

mkt
mkt
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

I really appreciate your piety, Jilly. For whatever it’s worth, though, I’d take everything ME says with a grain of salt. A misandrist calling another woman a racist is certainly the pot calling the kettle black (talk about mixing metaphors)! ME often assumes she understands the motives of others, and has made many sweeping generalizations with zero evidence (a direct violation of the 9th Commandment: “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.”) Her own use of Scripture is very questionable and highly selective to say the least.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  mkt

Thank you, that is comforting!

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

“Well obviously what you do with that beautiful passage is turn it into something ugly and use it to validate your own racism and stupidity, Jilly.”

This could be read as ME talking to Jilly about other peoples racism and stupidity, instead of calling Jilly stupid and racist. (Because obviously she isn’t)

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

Jilly, if you’re racist and stupid, then I’m proud to stand right beside you and say, “Hey, I’m racist and stupid, too!”

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago

lol

ME
ME
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

Jilly, you have habit of personalizing everything I say. So the automatic assumption is always that I must be calling Jilly names in some kind of passive/aggressive attack aimed directly at her.

As much as I do not wish to hurt your feelings, I am not going to watch what I say. There really ARE a lot of a stupid, racist, hate filled comments in these threads. You did not even enter my mind when I was typing those words, I was actually thinking of Ashv, 40 Acres, and a few others.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

Sure, my comments are hate-filled — specifically what I hate is twisting the scriptures to promote injustice, as you continue to do.

ME
ME
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

My comments are not hate-filled. But they are temperamental when people try to take Christ’s beautiful words and turn them into something ugly in an attempt to justify their own hatred.

I do NOT twist scripture to promote injustice. It is you who are in a thread about racial harmony trying to quote Christ’s words about dogs.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

You seem to be unable to separate positive and negative emotions from righteous and unrighteous behaviour.

Jesus loved people, but he hated some people too. Jesus said some beautiful things, but he called some people rather ugly names as well. It is not the goal of Christians to get rid of negative emotions, but to try to apply them to the proper objects.

So far you have had difficulty distinguishing between how God speaks about the innocent and the guilty. If you can’t get the basics right, your opinions on more subtle stuff aren’t trustworthy.

ME
ME
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

“It is not the goal of Christians to get rid of negative emotions, but to try to apply them to the proper objects.”

People are not “objects.” Christ’s words are not a commandment telling you it’s okay to declare certain races of people to be dogs.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

It’s a metaphor, dear. You’re seeing what you want to see rather than actually trying to communicate.

ME
ME
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

You are now peeing down my leg and trying to claim it’s raining. You took a beautiful passage of scripture out of context, left off the most important part, stated that Christ hates people, and misapplied scripture as if to imply that Christ himself perceives some races of people to be dogs.

There is indeed a metaphor to be found in that passage. It has apparently sailed right over your head.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

I wouldn’t call it passive aggressive . It was downright aggressive. You said,Well obviously what you do with that beautiful passage is turn it into something ugly and use it to validate your own racism and stupidity, Jilly. In answering a question I asked, you use my name and refer specifically to my own racism and stupidity. You could not have made it more personal if you had put it in neon lights. But when confronted, you hide behind accusing people of being too sensitive and taking things too personally. I think that when you encounter disagreement, especially from women,… Read more »

ME
ME
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

It was a cynical comment, Jilly. You chose to take it personally. It was not directed at you. I did NOT deny what Jesus said, I posted the rest of the passage. Context matters a great deal. “I do not interpret that line racially.” So? Clearly others do, which is why they presented it as an argument. “I think that in your interactions with some people on this board, your anger and dislike is never far beneath the surface. I, for one, find it disturbing….” I am not required to like every comment on this board, to hide my anger… Read more »

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

Of course, you’re not. You can be as unkind as you like, and you can say things knowing that they will hurt someone. But I am no longer willing to deal with them. I hope that you will be willing one day to look at your readiness to be hurtful when no one has been unkind or hurtful to you.

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

“It was a cynical comment, Jilly. You chose to take it personally”

It did sound personal if you didn’t pay close attention to the comma.

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

BPD?

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago

I certainly hope not. That is a great trial and affliction.

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

Indeed.

Jonathan
Jonathan
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

What is your experience? My foster daughter is BPD. (I assume you don’t mean bipolar.)

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  Jonathan

No, I meant Borderline Personality. Some anorexics have a dual diagnosis of BPD, and it is a great trial to themselves and to those who love them. What I have noticed in the BPD-diagnosed women who have been in treatment with me is (1) intense fear of abandonment (2) hard to control emotions, especially rage (3) self-harming behaviors like cutting or pulling out hair and (4) splitting–where one moment they think you are an angel, and the next you are the devil incarnate. I think the good news is that there are some effective treatments nowadays, but the patient must… Read more »

Jonathan
Jonathan
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

Yeah, that’s what I assumed you meant.

I know a lot, lot, lot about borderline now. The problem is that we’re in an area with few resources for it. I think that my wife and I will have to do a lot of the treatment work ourselves, if we can keep her around and alive for that long.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  Jonathan

I am so sorry, Jonathan. It is a devastating diagnosis, and it is very hard on families. You are probably aware of all the information resources out there, but a good site is http://www.borderlinepersonalitydisorder.com/ They have tapes and information about treatment possibilities and clinical trials. There is also an anonymous online community of parents/spouses that can be helpful. A good book that you have probably already read is “Stop Walking on Eggshells.” It helps caregivers deal with tendency of the borderline patient to make people around them think they are the ones with the problem. Many therapists and psychiatrists are… Read more »

Jonathan
Jonathan
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

I was pessimistic of medication at first, but we’re considering mood stabililzers now and hopefully will have an appointment with a psychiatrist soon.

We have a psychologist willing to work with BPD, it’s just that she uses CBT rather than any BPD-specific developed program, and overall availability and competency of psychologists where I live is not strong. Still, she definitely seems to help (3 appointments so far). But I think my wife and I are going to use our contacts and background to learn DBT skills on our own and teach them to her.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  Jonathan

I have enormous faith in mood stabilizers, especially for girls whose hormonal cycles can make their symptoms worse. I think CBT doesn’t have the same level of accountability as DBT–but, on the plus side, it is less likely to be regarded as punitive by the patient. I think, without knowing anything about your situation, that the key to working with her will be presenting techniques as things that help you and can help her, not as extra stuff she has to do because she is “broken.” I think DBTs despair of anyone ever understanding how terrible and desperate they feel,… Read more »

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

Stop Walking on Eggshells is a very good book. But Get Me Out of Here: My Recovery from Borderline Personality Disorder ….that’s another story altogether. It’s considered a BPD classic, and comes highly recommended. I found it cheap at a used bookstore, but I simply couldn’t stomach it. After about 10% of it, I had to put it away. The woman who wrote it just didn’t do a very good job of humanizing herself, or explaining what was going through her mind at different times to make her act the way she did. It was like, “After a week at… Read more »

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago

It sounds as if, although she recovered, she didn’t get much insight into herself. Any time I wanted to scream at my husband (which remained on the fantasy level), I knew exactly why I felt that way! Marsha Linehan has a fascinating story. When she was in her late teens, she was absolutely insane. She spent a year or so in a psychiatric hospital where she spent a lot of time in the rubber room. She was a headbanger, and she continually tried to set herself on fire. The medical director said she was the craziest patient in the history… Read more »

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

I just wanted to add that I have a dear friend who was diagnosed with BPD in her early twenties and had a lot of really serious struggles. But she has done very well with a successful career, a happy marriage, and motherhood. And this came after numerous suicide attempts and hospitalizations. So don’t lose hope.

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

I’ve looked into the DBT approach. I don’t think most people who could benefit from it are up to the task of actually doing the extremely hard work it entails.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago

I agree with you, but sometimes even just the techniques to calm and distract yourself can be helpful. If acting on the impulse to go key your boyfriend’s car can be delayed for ten minutes, there is a good chance you won’t go through with it. Same with cutting yourself or eating an entire cake. I think the real hope is in buying enough time for the patient to naturally outgrow the worst parts of the disorder–which generally happens.

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

And, maybe my memory is fuzzy, but I think most insurance doesn’t cover DBT, at least then.

And the sessions were expensive, and there were lots of them needed in most cases.

And from what I’ve seen, few people with BPD are in the kind of place financially where they can afford to pay for it themselves.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago

Insurance companies won’t pay for it unless they are compelled to. In California there is a parity law that requires insurance companies to cover mental illnesses exactly as they would a physical disease. But, although I have excellent health insurance, my HMO would not be able to provide several treatment sessions a week for many years. It tends to herd people into groups. And there is always a shortage of therapists trained in DBT. It used to be said that a BPD diagnosis essentially meant that your psychiatrist doesn’t like you. Things are better now, but few therapists are willing… Read more »

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

Step 1: Point and shriek.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  ME

You have no credibility on interpretation of Scripture.

katie
katie
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

He was calling those outside the covenant “dogs,” and then went on to show that even the dogs could become children. He has called those who were not his people, his people.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  katie

Exactly. And Jesus honoured her humility, and blessed her, for recognising other people were in line ahead of her.

katie
katie
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

So what does that have to do with “racial harmony?”

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  katie

Well, it’s a question of what the proper ordering of our affections and care should be. The Christian answer, as shown by this passage and others, is that our care should be first for our families, then our communities, then foreigners. To make our duties to those near to us and those far to us equal is the attitude of the cuckold.

katie
katie
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

This passage does not show the proper ordering of our affections and care. You either don’t understand the passage, or you’re deliberately using it wrongly in order to prove your point, which is badly done, Emma. The passage highlights this Gentile woman’s humble faith as she recognizes what many Hebrews at the time didn’t – that though the Hebrews were first in line, there were others waiting in the wings whom God had ordained to bless as well. It was to the Hebrews that God gave his law that set them apart from the nations. But “salvation has come to… Read more »

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  katie

My point is that without that assumption this story is of no particular interest, since Jesus’ ministry is presumably first to his own people. This example is striking precisely because it violates the norm — demonstrating that the principle exists in the first place.

katie
katie
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

You’re shoving a lot into that “presumably.” His ministry was to the Hebrews, like all the prophets’ was, but he was also unveiling “phase 2,” so to speak, in which it is revealed that Gentiles are also “his people,” like this Phoenician woman, like the centurion, etc. Go ahead and make the point you’re trying to make, you just can’t do it with this passage.

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  katie

“The passage highlights this Gentile woman’s humble faith as she recognizes what many Hebrews at the time didn’t – that though the Hebrews were first in line, there were others waiting in the wings whom God had ordained to bless as well.”

You’re agreeing with ashv here. Unless you can show that the Hebrews being first in line is not a proper ordering of affections.

katie
katie
5 years ago

Jesus’ response to the woman shows that he is revealing God’s plan of redemption more thoroughly – the Hebrews WERE first in line, but you snooze, you lose, to speak theologically. Ashv wants this story to be analogous to his story, but it’s not. It’s speaking to another topic.

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  katie

The two are not mutualy excluseive.

katie
katie
5 years ago

Those two topics are not mutually exclusive, no. But neither can they be conflated.

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  katie

As for properly ordered affections we have children before dogs, Jews before gentiles, and family before strangers. This far the story, you, and ashv are in agreememt. The dots haven’t been connected out to ashvs plan for racial harmony yet.

katie
katie
5 years ago

You mean it used to be Jews before Gentiles. The new covenant has altered that.

Christopher Casey
Christopher Casey
5 years ago
Reply to  katie

Yes, Paul had much to say about that in Romans.

katie
katie
5 years ago

Also see John the Baptist’s response to the Pharisees – you are children of Abraham? God can raise up children of Abraham from these stones. Etc etc. The Phoenician woman is the dog in the one metaphor, and the stones in the other. Either way, not what ashv is talking about.

katie
katie
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

If we really must see Christ teaching us about the proper ordering of our affections from this passage (and that’s a stretch of Spurgeon-like proportions), then he would be teaching that the Church is our primary allegiance. But again, that’s a stretch.

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago

Racial harmony? I am for it.

Me, too! I love The Four Tops!

katecho
katecho
5 years ago

Notice how the deep cynicism completely distracts and overwhelms 40 ACRES and carries him away before he can even think of constructively interacting with the real issue.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  katecho

Oh dear, I hope that I not cynical, let alone deeply. What I am is eminently distractable. Like a magpie that sees something shiny.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago

Bernadette? Or I Can’t Help Myself? Or their classic cover of Just Walk Away Renee?

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

Sugar Pie Honey Bunch and Can’t Help Myself are my favorites.

Man, I love those songs.

And the Temptations had some great songs, too.

Not sure how we went from that stuff to rap.

But here we are.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago

I think my favorite is I’ll Be Doggone, the Marvin Gaye version.

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  jillybean

I love a lot of Motown songs, especially by The Four Tops and The Supremes, but there are tons of others. Like I Wish It Would Rain. What a powerful recording… And I had no idea of the story behind the song, until about a year ago, when I googled to see if David Ruffin wrote it: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I_Wish_It_Would_Rain Motown staff writer Roger Penzabene provided the song’s lyrics. More so than a number of other Motown songs, there is real sentiment and pain behind the song’s words. Lyricist Penzabene had just found out his wife was cheating on him with another… Read more »

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago

Adultery is a horrible thing. Poor man.

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago

Doug, instead of having to go through the hassle of posting Thabiti’s pic every other day, you could save a lot of time if you’d just add it to your header.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago

In this specific instance I would ask: do white and black Americans mean the same thing by racial reconciliation?

In particular I would note that the idea of treating people the same regardless of ethnicity, rather than favouring one’s own group, is almost exclusively a white-people thing.

Conserbatives_conserve_little
Conserbatives_conserve_little
5 years ago

This is being addressed as an exclusively Black White issue. You consider doing anything with Indians?

ashv
ashv
5 years ago

Sure, everybody remembers what “Indian Lives Matter” did at Fort Mims…

David Trounce
5 years ago

Why is America so obsessed with race relations? It is not a problem for the church. A Christian in his right mind knows that the Gospel deals sweetly and completely with the issue of race. Slavery is dealt with just a sweetly by the same Gospel. No doubt, in the church Doug serves, it’s not an issue. It only seems to become a problem for the church when it moves in to the neighbourhood and starts saying more than the Gospel says. I think the American church falls into a trap when, in following the beat of the daily news,… Read more »

40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
40 ACRES & A KARDASHIAN
5 years ago
Reply to  David Trounce

Slavery is dealt with just a sweetly by the same Gospel.

Indeed. The New Testament is quite clear on slavery:

Slaves, obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ. Eph. 6:5

Slaves, obey your earthly masters in everything; Col. 3:22

Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh. 1 Peter 2:18

David Trounce
5 years ago

Amen to that.

ashv
ashv
5 years ago
Reply to  David Trounce

America is obsessed with race relations due to the tribal conflict between Massachusetts Puritans and Virginia Cavaliers that has broadened and extended throughout its history. Blacks are an effective tool for those on the top end of American society (the political and cultural heirs of the Puritans) to attack those in the middle and on the bottom, who aren’t “good whites”.

David Trounce
5 years ago
Reply to  ashv

I am not sure that the Puritans would regard Hillary as one of their children.

jillybean
jillybean
5 years ago
Reply to  David Trounce

Funny, because I think she is very puritanical in some ways. I think that what people have a visceral reaction to is that she comes across as a spoilsport. Someone who is only too happy to tell you how to think and what to do.

Ryan Sather
Ryan Sather
5 years ago

“I believe that I have trusted voices in my life that would tell me if they believed I was doing that. But thus far that has not happened.”

So you obviously don’t trust Thabiti, because he has told you that you’re doing this and you haven’t listened.