Chris Pinto on yesterday's radio show did his own review of Hiram Diaz's review which I posted below this one.
This was by "mt" who appears to have read one of my blog posts, which of course makes me happy, and does a very nice job of saying what the debate was all about.
I think Dr. White's comments are a testament to just how successful the watering down of seminary / church history education in America is. As a former Catholic I can certainly testify of how startling it is to wake up to the facts of Rome's historical influences and how much further reaching they are than what we have been taught. But it seems strange that reformed believers want to argue the other side of the debate... perhaps b/c they haven't experienced what it feels like to come out of the stupor of false doctrine, and don't understand how deep it goes or how underhandedly it has been perpetrated on the world. This is perhaps also owed to the success of the propaganda put forth in modern day academia. (I say this as someone with a master's level education myself. The elitism in academia can be overbearing.)
From listening to the debate, it "appeared" that Dr. White wanted to divert attention to the Jesuits, as a tactic to discredit Chris, b/c White does not see credibility in any of CJP's historical research on their reported conspiratorial behaviors. Probably also b/c he had such a weak argument against the actual topic. After all, these S.J.'s are so nice and smooth talking, they couldn't possibly be bad. Right? I would guess he knows that if he says something dogmatically and authoritatively enough, and often enough, his followers will still believe what he says without bothering to check it out for themselves. Quoting James White seems to bear as much authority as quoting scripture for some folks. Some of the blog posts of those who think he "won" would bear this out, IMO. The statements they make have no substance to suggest otherwise. But it seems clear Dr. White has a lot invested in his viewpoint and doesn't want to budge. No surprises there. I don't think it's any coincidence either that he was given the last word.
I think Chris was very gracious, Christ-like, and polite. But, in spite of Chris' composed demeanor, White, while more polite than usual, not only tried to detract from the agreed upon topic, but also hit below the belt at least a couple times with condescending remarks. I still find that disconcerting, because it seems the "debate" forum for him was more an attempt to squelch Chris' research and prove his own right-ness than it was to seek truth. He attempted to dominate the debate, restate the "rules", cut Chris off, hold Chris to standards he can't hold himself to, and justify himself as graciously deigning to take time to debate Chris because of his supposed noble mission to disprove Chris' theory.
I believe Chris' forthright manner and clearly stated historical citations showed his character to be above that of his "opponent". Time will tell how God will use it to expose the truth of the authenticity of these manuscripts vs those that uphold those time-tested scriptures, integral to our faith and the testimony of our Lord Jesus Christ. God may have opened a door through this debate to do just that. It seems Chris' film-making and podcasting experience prepared him well to deal with the time constraints of his first formal debate.
Meanwhile, we can only hope and pray that some of Chris' accusers will be convicted in their hearts and repent and apologize for calling him "a liar". These are the very people who demanded Chris' apologies and have not yet humbled themselves to do likewise. We will continue to pray that Chris will continue to be a shining light in spite of them, and will continue to rise above his critics. We all have the challenge of not becoming embittered when attacked in this manner and, from what I can see, Chris' priorities are right in this regard.
The Way Back: Ponderings
3 weeks ago