Saturday, December 07, 2013

See no evil

I'm going to comment on this post:

First off, there's the irony (hypocrisy?) of someone who does a post entitled "It's NONE of My Business." Ironic because he's making it his business to tell others what is not their business. 

But I am convinced that much of it is more playing the busybody than the noble voice of righteousness. 

Yet he has publicly inserted himself into the middle of this very debate. It's okay for him to play the busybody. 

Caner and I are not part of the same church. None of my offerings are going to support him or Brewton-Parker College. We are not part of the state convention. Our only connection is that we are part of the same association of autonomous, voluntarily-connected local churches known as the Southern Baptist Convention.

They belong to the same denomination. Caner has a corporate identity as well as an individual identity. He's a Southern Baptist. Moreover, he's now a high-profile representative of the SBC. 

It's perfectly appropriate for other Southern Baptists to publicly distance themselves from him. To disassociate themselves from him. To say, "He doesn't represent what we represent. He doesn't speak for us. "

Moreover, that would be appropriate even if you and he didn't belong to the same denomination. To the extent that he's a well-known spokesman for the Christian faith, other Christians are entitled to say, "He's not my representative. I didn't authorize him to speak on my behalf. Don't judge my faith by his antics!"

Do I have authority over Ergun Caner, or is he in authority over me? Nope. Not in the slightest. Therefore, I do not believe that a public rebuke of him is either my duty or my right.

Why cast the issue in terms of authority rather than right and wrong? Why does Miller assume you need a special right to speak the truth or point out that someone is in the wrong? Why must you be in a position of authority over someone else to say what they are doing is wrong…if it fact it's wrong? 

People confront Caner about his background stories less because they are concerned about his background and more as a result of his harsh treatment of Calvinists and Calvinism. I would also say (to be an equal opportunity offender) that many have defended him for the same reason – they supported his attacks on Calvinism!

In some cases that's true. But that's a hasty generalization. 

But  Paul told us to leave wrath in the hands of God and not to attempt to bring vengeance and justice on our own.

That trivializes the concept of vengeance. In Scripture, prohibitions against personal vengeance are intended to forestall blood feuds or lynch law. 

By Miller's logic, there is no place for church discipline. 

Is there not some value in private instead of public rebuke? I know that many have argued (convincingly to me) that Matthew 18:15 does not directly apply to blogging…I think the same principle works for personal conflict. 

That contradicts his earlier contention:

Do I have a relationship with Ergun Caner? No. Never met him. Never exchanged a word, even an online word, with him. He and I are not in the same church or association.

Either he has a personal relationship with Caner, in which case Mt 18:15 is applicable–or else he has no personal relationship with Caner, in which case Mt 18:18 is inapplicable. Once again, Miller is trying to have it both ways.

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