Archive for December, 2007

Conclusion to Sola Scriptura Debate Posted

December 31, 2007

Well, it is over at long last. (link) Meanwhile, at the same blog, the “Holy Water” debate is continuing to spill ever onward. Thankfully, I’ve agreed to time limits on posting in that debate, so we should see progress more quickly.

Thanks to “Orthodox” for debating me on the topic of Sola Scriptura.


More Orthodox Territorial Squabbling

December 31, 2007
This is a follow up to a previous post. Here we see more territorial squabbling – the natural result of sola ecclesia. Follow the link (link).


Compare Your New Year’s Resolutions …

December 31, 2007

… to those of Jonathan Edwards (link) or (direct link).

May God be glorified, despite our many failings,


Timely Announcement: Exorcism Squads

December 30, 2007

The latest news (actually, maybe it’s old news and I’m just hearing about it) from Vatican City is that the pope is authorizing exorcism squads (link). The timing of all this is rather handy, as the Holy Water debate is moving along with some speed over at the debate blog (link).

May God be glorified,


The Pope’s Alleged Heresies

December 27, 2007

This website (link) catalogues 101 alleged heresies of Benedict XVI. Now, obviously, the RCC does not teach that popes are perfect. I wonder, though, whether any supporter of Ben16 has taken the time to debunk the list above, which – at first glance – appears to be documented with evidence from various sources.

The list is something of a catch 22.

-If the list is true and accurate, Ben16 is more of a liberal protestant than one might think.

-If the list is accurate as the left column (Ben16’s views) but inaccurate as to the right column (RCC dogma) and if Ben16’s views are the view of the RCC, then all sorts of new issues are raised.

-If the list is accurate as to the right column but not the left column, and if Ben16’s views are the view of the RCC, then a different set of new issues are raised.

In any event, regardless of the answers, it would handy to have a continuationalist (as opposed to a sedavacantist) RCer “debunk” or confirm the list. I don’t think it’s been done, but I admit my fallibility.


The World Religions Guessing Game …

December 27, 2007

Try to guess the religion of this assassin (link). There is one group that thinks it will benefit from killing the opposition leaders in Pakistan (and particularly, killing a woman), and that is not the ruling party, but the purist Muslims.

But there is one group that will actually benefit, even from these horrific crimes, and that is the elect. All things work together for the good of them that are the called. I don’t pretend to know how this works to the good of the elect, but I’m sure it does. Even though they mean it for evil, good will come from it.

I’m not encouraging Al-Quaeda, I’m discouraging them. All their work to promote Islam will ultimately fail. God will prevail, He always does. We may grieve with the prophets of old, at the cruelty of the wicked, but we know that God’s will will be done. As their own words testify, God is Great!

There is no God but the Triune, and the false prophet of Islam, the father of murderers, is no prophet of God,


Now I get why Osteen says Mormons are Christians …

December 27, 2007

It is, as they say, all about the Benjamins* (link).

That just confirms to me that Osteen is not a Christian teacher at all, no matter what he may call himself. If someone can locate a copy of Turretin’s Institutes in their local Mormon bookstore, I’ll eat my hat (figuratively speaking).


* For those unfamiliar with urban lingo, Benjamins = money

UPDATE: JohnMark at Beggars All Reformation is less suspicious of Osteen – and simply sees this as confirming the vacuity of Osteen’s writing (link).

Is Christimas a Catholic Holiday?

December 27, 2007

In a recent discussion with Centuri0n (the wise Turk), he noted with apparent surprise my curious insistence, as a Puritan, that Christmas is a vestige of Catholicism, and is primarily objectionable for that reason, not for its more ancient connection with paganism.

Let’s be clear about one thing: just because one celebrates the birth of Christ does not make one a crypto-Catholic, and Centuri0n has the honor of having his photo posted in a popular Catholic apologist’s “Anti-Catholics” web page. Indeed, the Bible gives us the freedom, individually, to celebrate holy days according to our choosing.

Furthermore, let’s be clear that giving gifts, spending time with family, eating figgy pudding and honey-glazed ham, and drinking spiced cider, eggnog, or (if your conscience permits) a little brandy, is perfectly fine – whether the occasion is the birthday of Her Majesty, Elizabeth II (may God save the Queen!), Independence Day, Bastille Day, International Women’s Day, or a day you have set aside to remember Christ’s incarnation. Those things are not religious activities. For most folks, even etymologically questionable things like mistletoe and a conifer have lost their original druidic connotation, and are essentially just winter seasonal decorations. Bereft of original pagan significance, these two can be enjoyed as God’s gifts.

But Christmas was a Catholic holiday. While misguided modern evangelicals are busy trying to put the “Christ” back in “Christmas,” they are joined in that task by Catholics who are anxious to put not only the “Christ” back in, but the “mass” back in as well. Why? Because it was their holiday first.

One perfectly acceptable reason for an evangelical not to celebrate the Birth of Christ on December 25 each year is to say to the world: “My religion is not Catholicism. I do not honor their holy days, and I do not follow their traditions. The Scripture alone is my rule of faith and life.”

Now, I realize there is a counter-argument that we can Evangelical-ize Christmas, just as Catholics Christianized Christmas away from the pagans in the first place. I hate to be a sourpuss on this, but It’s not going to work. Too many false gospels with their false Christs are willing to be a part of almost every American child’s favorite holiday, and Catholicism is right there, leading the way, and pointing out that they came up with the idea of celebrating a mass to honor Christ’s birth.

Furthermore, in order to outnumber those who make Christmas a holy day of obligation, we’d practically have to make it obligatory on the people of our churches as well. Doing so would violate God’s law by unlawfully binding the consciences of men to a human invention.

Sorry, Centuri0n – it is a Catholic holiday, it is associated with Catholicism, and its only the influence of secularism/paganism that is likely to decatholicize it. We see that happening in America today, where the holiday is largely “secular” and humanist, despite Congressional attempts to declare it a Christian holiday (which, as you may have heard, got a surprising 9 votes against!). Feel free to celebrate it if you like, but don’t insist that we join you.

I have freedom in Christ to treat the day, for religious purposes, like any other, and I plan to exercise that freedom, without stepping on your freedom to set it aside as a holy day for yourself.

May God Incarnate be glorified,


A Purtian’s Mind – in Portuguese

December 26, 2007

I’d encourage those who read my blog but are more comfortable with Portuguese, to check it out (link). Thanks to Albert for correcting me from Spanish to Portuguese.

Boar’s Head Tavern Quotes TurretinFan without Attribution

December 26, 2007

John Halton, over at BHT, has quoted a comment of mine without providing attribution (here). So does Michael Spencer as well (here). Comments on the posts are closed, but I hope this post will spark Halton and Spencer to at least identify the person they quote.


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