Monday, March 13, 2006

You're Not My Daddy!

Remember the “You’re Not My Daddy!” defense? You are 7 years old, and the school teacher tells you to do something that you don’t want to do. Your response: “You’re not my daddy! I don’t have to do anything you say!” The “You’re Not My Daddy” defense is somewhat like the “Nanny Nanny Boo-Boo” defense, only the “Nanny Nanny Boo-Boo” defense has more substance to it.

John Loftus has employed the “You’re Not My Daddy” defense. He made his usual village-atheist attacks upon the Christian faith. I asked him to substantiate his statements. His response: “I don’t have to do anything you say!” No, Loftus, I’m not your daddy, and you don’t have to do anything I say. But if you wish to be effective in your goal to destroy the faith of many believers, you might not want to look quite so foolish.

Well, acting as if the whole situation never happened, Loftus returned to his corner of cyberspace and simply repeated the same unjustified, already-refuted statements:

Let me throw this out for discussion, regarding my previous post concerning God’s sovereign decree that I should lead others away from Christianity. A Calvinist asked:

[quote]Is Loftus going to argue that God’s perceptive will and his decretive will are within the realms of “the same respect”?[/quote]

The Calvinist who asked this question was me. Loftus fails to tell us 1) who made this statement, 2) what the context of this statement is, and 3) where this statement can be found. All we need to do is add a little context to the discussion. Here is my original statement:

And John Loftus, like a good atheist, uses the word “contradictory” while abandoning the correct definition of a contradiction. Remember, the law of non-contradiction states that A cannot equal non-A, in the same respect. Is Loftus going to argue that God’s perceptive will and his decretive will are within the realms of “the same respect“? No, it takes bad exegesis that rips a passage about the return of Christ out of its context and forces an eisegetical soteriological reading into it in order for Loftus to attempt to establish a contradiction on the part of God.

Loftus made a statement that depended upon a cited prooftext of his (2 Peter 3:9). But in order to establish a contradiction, he must substantiate that this text is saying what he tells us it is saying. Therefore, I asked him to exegete the text for me; I asked him to count for me how many times the words you and beloved appear in the surrounding verses. I asked him to tell me why he uses the universal quantifier differently than he assumes how Scripture uses it. His response to me was the “You’re Not My Daddy!” defense, telling me that he didn’t have to listen to me. No, Loftus, you don’t have to substantiate your assertions (any more than you have to be engaging in the goal to “debunk” Christianity). But if it is in your interest to accomplish anything concerning the matters of this debate, it would be best that you graduate past the mere assertion. Understanding the context of this discussion, it is no wonder why Loftus retreated to his corner of cyberspace only to once again present his refuted statements, removing context and reference point from the discussion in order to deceive his readers.

Logical gerrymandering. That’s what you do with these two distinctions. Your theology is a sham.

Why? In this entire post of his, he never backs up these statements here. In fact, this entire thread is simply the repetition of the unjustified presuppositions that he merely asserts here, assuming that the reader knows what he is talking about and agrees with him.

Try to actually understand it, okay. I mean, really try to understand it.

Try to actually substantiate your claims, okay. I mean, really try to substantiate them.

Either your God ends up acting just like the Arminian God with these distinctions, or your God is completely sovereign. Which is it, in the end?

And it appears that Loftus is just as ignorant of the context of the discussion as he has made his readers to be! God is completely sovereign. Do you think I am defending anything else?

If God is completely sovereign then God decreed what I am doing (could I have done otherwise?)

Which is what I stated all along.

I am leading people away from him. If I’m effective, more people will die without Christ. People will be in hell as a result of my efforts (according to this God).

Yes. So…what’s the problem?

But I cannot do otherwise. God purportedly decrees this because the people who suffer in hell for all eternity bring him more glory than if they didn’t suffer in hell for eternity. This is just laughable to me.

What is laughable to me is that Loftus simply repeats the same error he made earlier. What is laughable to me is that Loftus started out this thread with the statement, “I had a master’s level class with the late Calvinistic professor Kenneth Kantzer, the ‘dean of evangelicalism,’ where we read through and thoroughly discussed Calvin’s institutes,” as if to assure us that he understands the issues. But Loftus’ statements here display an ignorance of basic Christian doctrine! “More glory”? Can the Christian God be more glorified than he already is? Loftus had already committed this error with the statement, “But these two scenarios do not bring him as much glory as the one we find ourselves in,” to which I replied:

Do you think that that is the basis for God’s decrees? Have you already forgotten that the Christian God is the self-sufficient God? There is no scenario where he would receive either more or less glory than he already has. There is perfect fellowship in the trinity, and God possesses all qualities intrinsically and eternally in infinite measure. He is no more glorified now than he was before creation. The only thing different is the means by which he reveals his glory.

Displaying ignorance of basic Biblical theology even after having already been shown to be in error, Loftus simply repeats his statement to a fresh, atheistically-biased audience, hoping that none of them would actually read back at the context of this exchange. You would think that a self-professed seminary grad, self-professed former pastor, and oft-self-professed former student of William Lane Craig would understand the simple doctrine of the self-sufficiency of God, or would at least be reminded and corrected concerning the doctrine when he is shown his error. But to the crayon theologian, you’re-not-my-daddy-defending John Loftus, this is never the case.

Think about it folks! The belief in the eternal suffering of billions of people for slighting God is one of the biggest problems atheists have with God, and one of the main causes to malign him.

Loftus is never slow to use biased, unbiblical language in his helpless attempts at internal critiques. For “slighting God” (as if we merely forgot to say ‘excuse me’ after failing to put our napkins in our laps)? Is that biblical language? Is that how the Bible describes it, or has Loftus simply hijacked biblical principles and mingled them with his atheistic presuppositions in order to factor out the product of this failed attempt at an internal critique?

How could angels and the redeemed ever praise him for this, especially when those who suffer will be their spouses, children, parents, and friends?

Is the judge who does not punish the murderer worthy of praise? Would you praise the judge who simply looked over the wrongdoings of the murderer of your friend? Or is it that God is worthy to be praised for his justice, and for his righteousness?

And God decreed this?

Yes, he did.

Notice that Loftus simply assumes that we agree with him. He establishes no problem here. There is no conclusion that we can see validly and necessarily drawn from an established premise. In fact, he never even tells us “This is wrong, obviously, because…” There is no argument on Loftus’ part. No, rather, Loftus simply assumes that these facts will rub us the wrong way as it rubs him the wrong way. In effect, Loftus is Loftus’ own standard for Loftus: “What makes me happy. What seems just to me. What kind of God I would be comfortable with.” John Loftus is not an atheist; the god of Loftus’ worldview is himself. And Loftus wants us all to submit to the god of the intellect of John Loftus, and if the God of Christianity does not meet the standards of the god of John Loftus, then the God of Christianity must be thrown out. This is self-centered, conceptual autonomy at its worst.

These people could not have done otherwise?

Let’s not be quick to forget that these people did not want to do otherwise. Is Loftus going to tell us that he really wants to be a Christian but finds himself rejecting it against his will? Is he an innocent mind trapped in a rebellious body? Loftus would have us think that he is an innocent victim in some robot suit, finding himself forced out of bed in the morning, walking down the street, and robbing the nearest bank while he is barely awake. He would have us believe that his fingers went wacko as he typed this article that I am now critiquing. He really meant to praise the Christian God, but all of a sudden his fingers jammed and out popped blasphemy! Is this the case?

But this brings more glory to God than having everyone in heaven?

And here we go again, repeating errors as if they have never been corrected.

Well glory to God, then. With that kind of glory who needs shame? So shame on God. Shame. Shame. Shame.

It seems we have regressed back to Greek mythology, where he have a polytheistic theology that consists of gods warring against other gods. In today’s battle, in one corner we have the Christian God, and in the other we have the little John Loftus god. The Christian God tell us, “Believe in my goodness because I have created the world and demonstrated my goodness in redemption.” John Loftus god tells us, “You’re not my daddy!”

God should be ashamed of this…extremely ashamed.

Why should God, creator and sustainer of the universe, holding the world sovereignly in his hands, the rightful giver and taker of life, be ashamed because he does not meet the standards of John Loftus? What an egotistical, self-centered, arrogant worldview that Loftus holds!

People who do such things to other people on earth get locked up in prison and/or are executed. The fact that he is God and thus bigger and more powerful than us makes no difference in the way he should treat us.

In the way he should treat us? Loftus doesn’t do a good job at these internal critiques. He has a trouble staying inside the Biblical worldview, for his mind is so quick to think about himself. But, given Biblical assumptions, how should God treat sinners? Should he not condemn them all? On what basis can Loftus demand mercy from God?

However, Loftus, I’ll give you an opportunity now to respond to the gospel call. I’m sure you are very familiar of it. I’m sure that you know about doctrines such as justification by faith. Will you receive Christ this night? Not interested? Well, I can’t help you there. You see, Loftus is so quick to pass judgment on God concerning his decrees of salvation, yet so unwilling to respond to the gospel. Loftus is making quite a big deal over God’s decrees, putting the blame of his rejection of the gospel on God. But when Loftus is given the opportunity to do otherwise, he refuses! Who is to blame, Loftus? God, for his holiness, or you, for your sinful unwillingness? Does the person who is in the burning building, but who willingly resists rescue have the right to blame the rescuer?

It just makes him a thug, a horrible gang leader, a despicable potentate. That this brings God any glory at all is simply and absolutely laughable. He’s a devil in disguise, who revels in refuse, feces and garbage under the guise of praise.

Internal critique….yeah right!

This sovereign God could have equally decreed that we all loved and obeyed him and that there was no sin on earth and no need for a Savior.

Yes, he could have. But your underlying assumption is that he should have. Your underlying assumption is that grace can be demanded. Where do you get these assumptions?

Or, he could’ve decreed that everyone on earth heard and believed the gospel of Jesus.

Or, he could’ve decreed that everyone on earth not hear or reject the gospel of Jesus, so that all would be lost. But, in his mercy, he did not.

But these two scenarios purportedly don’t bring him as much glory as the one we find ourselves in, where he decrees that I should lead people away from him who will suffer for all eternity with the billions (?) in hell.

Lofuts is so persistent when it comes to error. He’s like the child who, not content to hold the hands of his parents, insists upon running into the street and getting hit by a car. Yes, the mother warned him and corrected him. But, apparently the child had a death wish.

Where’s my laugh machine. I know I have it somewhere. Oh. Here it is.

hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

The screeching sound of Loftus’ laughter is almost as deafening as the high-pitched cries of “Nanny Nanny Boo-Boo” from the playground, but it is equally ineffective. Ironic how the Bible so often talks about Loftus:

Proverbs 10:23 Doing wrong is like a joke to a fool, but wisdom is pleasure to a man of understanding.

Evan May.

5 comments:

  1. Maybe if you would not return this sort of invective in kind, your debate would be more pleasant and progressive and less acrimonious. Your tone and attitude are unbecoming a Christian.

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  2. David:

    While I can appreciate your comment, I am curious about how informed it is by the context of this discussion.

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  3. David is right on target. He's only offering an internal critique of your behavior.

    Oh, but being informed is now the criteria.

    Where's my laugh machine........I'll find it. Hmmm I guess I'll have to laugh myself.

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  4. Loftus has the unique talent of responding while not responding.

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  5. You do realize of course, that if God decreed that we should do something, then that also means he decreed that we wanted to do it, don't you? This is an inescapable conclusion. Why? Because if your God didn't decree that we wanted to do an action, then we wouldn't do that action.

    Wake up!

    ReplyDelete