How Not to Answer A Question-Hankadox Style

November 9, 2017

A Lordship Preface

Some time ago, John MacArthur, a somewhat popular evangelical preacher took a swipe at Hank Hanegraaff. I say swipe because in all fairness, that is what it was. MacArthur really doesn’t even try to be charitable. For example he designates the priestly cloth that is placed over the recipient’s head during the chrismation rite as a “rag” and derides it as infused with divine grace. That is of course a rather cheap shot. One has to wonder what Mr. MacArthur makes of Acts 19:12 after all.

MacArthur then goes on to cite the Confession of Dositheus, Decree 13, which I have referenced previously concerning Hank’s seeming inability to articulate a non-Protestant view of justification and disavow the Reformation teaching. The Decree is fairly clear inImage result for John MacArthur its denial of Sola Fide, so MacArthur is quite right to cite it on that score. I have no doubt though that MacArthur would be at great pains to explain what the view of justification expressed in it.  MacArthur goes on to say that the Orthodox, like Rome do not have the gospel and that they teach a false gospel. Perhaps he thought this would have significant shock value, but frankly that Protestants think so really isn’t news. Anyone shocked by it either hasn’t been paying attention or is completely ignorant of the Reformation.

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Matt 18: My Meeting With Hank Hanegraaff

November 2, 2017

Introduction

Over the course of the last couple of weeks, I have had a meeting and some phone conversations with Hank Hanegraaff. I want to take some space here to disclose these events and the conversations that took place. For the record, California law prohibits me from recording conversations with others without their knowledge and consent. Image result for matthew 18Consequently, I can only offer here my own account of the events and statements that were made.  After each encounter, I wrote down what occurred during the conversation and reviewed the notes I took during the conversations when that was possible.

For those who may be new to the ongoing fracas cataloged here, you will find below what I have written so far and some other helpful links.

The Babel Answer Man

A Hankadox Intermezzo

A Response to Cindee Martin Morgan

Footsies with Frederica

Why Hanegraaff’s Conversion is not Really a Big Deal (But It Should Be)

Audit’s Lesson was ‘Painful’ for Evangelist

Hanegraaff Wasn’t Handpicked

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What In The Hell?: Zoroastrianism and Hell

October 21, 2017

You’ll find attached a presentation I did many months ago for the local apologetic discussion group I am a member of. It refutes the argument from a local atheist, claiming that Judaism, and Christianity by extension had borrowed its eschatology and thanatology from Zoroastrianism.  Universalists also make this kind of claim from time to time. I hope you find it helpful.

What In the Hell?


Footsies with Frederica

October 19, 2017

Sometime ago Ancient Faith Radio (AFR) conducted an interview with Hank Hanegraaff.  Here I want to take some space to give readers the skinny along with some analysis of the interview and then say a few things about where things are likely to go.

I Hate It When I am Right

The first thing to note is that, unfortunately I was right about Hank’s apparent intentions. Hank is not apparently interested in quietly sitting down in church for the next few years to learn the Orthodox faith. Rather he has moved at light speed to promote himself and his private Protestant business (which CRI still is-see the CRI doctrinal statement Article 6) on just about every media platform that would host him. (He didn’t go on Catholic Answers radio out of some great love of Catholicism.) This includes the Orthodox Christian Network, which continues to help to sell his Protestant books to an Orthodox audience.

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Is William Lane Craig a Christian?

October 17, 2017

Below is a presentation I recently made at a local apologetics discussion group I am a member of. I’ve known about this issue for a long time. I thought it would eventually resolve itself, but it seems to have only gotten worse. I have noticed over the years that a few bloggers here and there have tackled this issue, but they have only done so piecemeal and they by and large really lacked the competence to represent Christian theology accurately and provide a proper diagnosis. Given this blog’s focus on the theology of St. Maximus the Confessor, I saw that I was well placed to address it more fully and adequately.  So I have undertaken to address it as part of a wider project. I hope you find it profitable.

I. What is the Question?

“Christology is the doctrinal locus where Christianity has the greatest need for theological precision. To be wrong here is to be wrong everywhere.”[i]

Now that I have your undivided attention, I need to take some space to toss out the questions that I am not asking. This list will not be exhaustive but sufficient to narrowImage result for big fish movie down the question to something workable.

  1. I am not asking if Craig is a recipient of divine grace. I am not asking if Craig is regenerate or “born again.” This is something neither I nor anyone else could know, maybe not even Craig.
  2. I am not asking if Craig thinks of himself as a Christian. A person may take themselves to be a Christian and may not in fact be one and likewise, one may be one and not know (e.g. Crucified thief)
  3. I am not asking if Craig is a nice person or a mean person. Nothing I write here implies or is meant to imply that Craig is malicious, intentionally deceptive or any other deliberate gross moral failure. Whether Craig secretly eats baby hamsters or some such thing is not something I know nor is it relevant to what I write here.
  4. I am not asking if Craig is the member of a or the Christian church. Whatever Craig’s ecclesial membership is (I simply do not know) is irrelevant to the question I am asking.
  5. I am not asking if Craig has done beneficial things to the furtherance of Christian belief in the world. Whatever good things Craig has done elsewhere or on other topics is irrelevant to whether what he professes in core areas of Christian doctrine count as Christian doctrines or not.

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The Wizard of Straw

September 20, 2017

Sometime ago I wrote a short presentation on an objection to Sola Scriptura and the response given to it. I constructed that presentation to deliberately leave out specific questions and counter objections. And this was because it was meant for a discussion group. I left material out to create space for those questions and counter objections to come out in the course of discussion.  I posted it because I thought the central insight would prove Image result for wizard of oz scarecrowprofitable for those thinking about the formal principle of the Reformation.

Posting such things is also a way to throw them out and see how they play. I’ve been hearing whispers here and there that various Reformed folks have been asked to address it. Recently Patrick Hines has chosen to engage it. Mr. Hines is apparently a Reformed pastor of sorts.  In the interests of full disclosure, I had contacted privately because of his efforts to critique Hanagraaff. I inquired whether we might collaborate. After being met with denunciations of apostasy and calls for my immediate repentance to “believe the true Gospel” it became apparent that that was a no go.  Having looked over Mr. Hines’ other material I didn’t think there was anything there worthwhile to engage. Too many egregious mistakes and not enough pay off to make a response worthwhile. Mr. Hines is so adept at creating strawmen that he should be rightly donned a wizard of said fallacy.

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The Orthodox Subversive on the Orthodox Revolutionary Show

August 6, 2017

Here is a recent interview I did with Paul Vendredi, who was gracious enough to allow me to speak my mind. You may not like what I have to say here, but I only ask you to consider one question. Is what I say true?

 

 


A Response to Cindee Martin Morgan

July 19, 2017


Are You Flying Solo?

May 25, 2017

Below is a short presentation I wrote this year for a discussion group I attend locally from time to time. I do not attempt to answer everything here or address objections. IImage result for flying solo specifically designed this piece to facilitate discussion so as to allow various objections to come out in due course. I did write it as part of a larger argument because I think it gets to the heart of the matter concerning Reformation disputes. That is, the argument is not over epistemological issues (how can we know the correct interpretation of scripture?) but rather normative issues (what interpretation of scripture is binding or obligatory?) So I think that framing the matter in this way helps to clear away much of the confusion over the Reformation’s formal distinctive that is left untouched by most discussions of this topic. I hope you find it profitable.

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A Hankadox Intermezzo

May 11, 2017

While my compatriots and I continue to gather and compile documents and information from many groups of former CRI employees across the country, I thought I would write a short piece. (I’ve included what I take to be some suitable musical accompaniment. ) Some critics no doubt think that my claims of Hank’Image result for Intermezzos theological incompetence and the evidence I gave in the previous post are a matter of cherry picking.  Likewise no doubt, some have wondered if the video I linked where Hank simply reads off of works by others without attribution is truly indicative of his lack of education. After all, everyone makes mistakes, right? You’re just being too hard on him, right?

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The Babel Answer Man

April 27, 2017

Haven’t you heard? Hank Hanegraaff has become Orthodox! Well, yes I have heard. The noise Scan0001.jpgproduced by the collective freak out at one end of the theological spectrum from the Pauper and Pooper blog representing the bottom of the barrel of Protestantism and the unquestioning adulation of Orthodox fangirls and bloggers rushing headlong to his defense is rather difficult to miss. But I sit here poised to wish a pox on both houses, as it were. As most of you know, I am Orthodox and have been for about 17 years. And as a few of you may know, I worked for the Christian Research Institute (CRI) from 1990-1992.  (That’s yours truly, bottom left, right next to Hank!) So I have a somewhat unique perspective to offer on the whole affair. In the posts that follow I explain why this is probably not a good thing for anyone, maybe not even Hank.

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Change

April 20, 2017

I have not written here in four years. The blog has been effectively dead for that time. Recently, someone asked me in social media why I stopped writing. I’d like to explain why and say a bit about where things are going.

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