As usual, view all of the nominated Screwballs on TheologyWeb.

From the Mailbag

The highlight of the month was this holier than thou screed from a Jack Chick style fundy/historical revisionist:

Dear Tekton (James Holding/Robert Turkel)

I have read your site many times in the past and found it interesting and often well written... but then I ran across your take on the Inquisitions? I have had the impression from the sound perspectives in your articles that you were a Baptist, and before putting my foot in my mouth about it, I looked it up and discovered that is indeed your background as was suspected.

I realize you probably get lots of mail and will (a) probably not even read this and/or (b) have no way, or time, to respond. But just in case these suspicions are incorrect, I am writing to ask why? Why on earth would you write what you did? Help me understand as I really truly wish to understand this? I do not assume to be correct in everything I think, I usually begin with a skeptical attitude toward my own previous inherited views and test them with fact and evidence to see if they are valid. If not, I simply change my view. I am open to many perspectives on things, and even historical revisionism when justified by the evidence.

But the Inquisitions? Christian? Seriously, you have to be kidding.

I majored in Pastoral theology from a conservative Bible college, actively work in the ministry, have spend time on independent study overseas in Europe and the middle-east and have long outgrown much of what I was spoon-fed, though I still subscribe to a Biblical world-view and the authority of Biblical truth in matters of faith and conscience.

I have read the current general publishing, offering historical revisionism on the Inquisitions, and frankly have found it to be dastardly wicked and full of blatant deceit almost on the level of holocaust denials. The comical claims put out by Catholic propagandists that only a few thousand people died is utterly absurd. The Roman Catholic inquisitions have murdered millions of people, are still an ongoing historical nightmare, and still exist in our modern world THIS VERY DAY !!! (And.. this is the most incredulous part of your article ....they are not "Christian"...unless your definition of "Christian" includes Nazis and Pedophilia and Necromancy and the fondling of rotting flesh to conjure up the spirits of the dead) And.. In that case, anything is "Christian" and there is no point in using the term.

The Holocaust was a continuation of the Inquisition. It murdered a minimum of 11 million people by most counts. If in case, you buy the lame excuses put out by the Catholic church it was something other than that, then simply read the words of the founding "Saint" of Opus Dei, who called Hitler a "martyred saint" of the Catholic Church, who is now in Heaven.

And if you still do not believe it, then go to Argentina where the Jesuit Inquisition was in full steam, and murdered an additional 30,000 - 50,000 Argentinians. That was only 30 Years ago (in 1 country). Scores of thousands were murderd all over Latin America, including many Protestant converts and Christian Missionaries. The victims in Argentina, were thrown alive from airplanes into the sea to be eaten by Sharks, or burned alive. 30,000 people. And their "relatives" were consoled with the fact that dying by sea was a "Christian death".

What is going on today with "the Inquisitions" is one of the biggest "cover-ups" of our current day, and you make the unforgivable mistake of calling this garbage "Christian" and defending it? When you should be calling it what it is, the result of the grotesque belief that submission to an Italian fascist dictator in the name of Christ is somehow an "Apostolic practice" required for "salvation"??? Yet not a word from you on such utter wicked heresy (on an apologetics site)?

If this letter were being written in the middle of World War II, and I was condemning the work of Hitler's holocaust and the "restoration of the Roman Reich", and you were "defending it as Christian"? Could you not now with the hindsight of history see that this was not only a gross heretical distortion of Christianity (clearly "not Christian") but such "apologetics" attempting to "defend it" to be utterly inexcusable??? Hitler was not "Christian". And neither was his Catholic religion that inspired such deadly, dangerous and twisted ideas as the holocaust (designed straight after Ignatius Loyola!) Who literally taught brainwashing and self-delusion as a "spiritual exercise"??

So ... I really don't get what's happening here. Help me understand what it is that has "converted" some of the most demonic episodes of human history into something (a Baptist) would now call "Christian" and actually attempt to "defend"??? Seriously, help me understand this as you have truly and completely blown my ever-loving Christian mind and every Bible reading circuit it has within it??? I don't believe this is a mistake, any true Christian can make.

But that's not all you did? Honestly, that should be enough to induce plenty of nausea on it's own. You went one step further. You began to attack the pre-reformation Protestants of central Europe, long known to have been the inspiration for the Protestant reformation of the 1500s, verifiably traceable through the Slavic, John Huss, who was burned at the stake for offering the central confession of faith of the Bogomils, that the Scriptures were the final authority for faith, you labeled these ancient believers "heretics" and "dualists"???

DUALISTS??? Heretics? Ok, first you do need to understand how this label is being used by Catholic propagandists. They call anyone who is not a "monist" a "dualist". This is the same label that the History channel used for New Testament Christians because they believed in Satan and an "Antichrist" (get it? Dualist? Christ vs. Antichrist?) You see in Catholicism, they are "monists" (meaning they believe that Satan and God, Christ and the Antichrist, are "secretly" the SAME THING!) That makes them NOT DUALISTS. Whereas anyone who thinks the Antichrist and Christ are NOT the "same thing" are "DUALISTS"?

That's what they mean by these terms. So am I to assume that YOU believe CHRIST and THE ANTICHRIST ARE SECRETLY THE SAME THING? That God and Satan are really the SAME? Thus making you a MONIST?



( You are NOT a "heretical dualist?")

Cathers? That's the origin of the term (and idea for) "Puritan"? And they're "dualist heretics"? Undermining? Rome? And you're actually defending their murders? Oh brother!

When I was researching the historical revisionism of the Spanish Inquisition, I ran across a very interesting article written in Israel by a Sepherdic Jew. He laughed at Protestants eager to accept this egregious historical revisionism (for what are openly and obviously political reasons that have nothing to do with truth or history) He noted that in Jewish history, the Inquisitions are well known and very well documented, and that the mass butchery of Jewry under then Spanish Inquisition led to one of the largest mass migrations out of Spain in Jewish History, where all sorts of horrific Nazi-like accounts were recorded by persecuted Jews during that time. He wondered why "Inquisition Denial" had so easily been accepted by Protestants, when it's modern counter-part, Holocaust-denial, was literally not only "unacceptable" but criminal.

It was a very good article and had a very good historical point, that cannot be swept under the rug with a glib Vatican denial. You cannot account for the fleeing of hundreds of thousands of people running for their lives into other countries, completely freaked out of their wits by witnessing utter horror, with a few secular trails and a couple hundred convictions of guilty people. I want to vomit just typing these sentences.

I also met the Missionary descendant of a Bogomil (like the Waldensians, the Cathars, and many many many others) ...own who knew their history personally as it was the history of his own family. These people were THE CHRISTIANS. The people MURDERING THEM, were the religious and political ancestors of HITLER, and what INSPIRED his re-institution of THE INQUISITION in GERMANY.

I am so sick of hearing Protestant Evangelicals now defend the Papacy that all of our own forefathers openly identified as the Antichrist, the same Papacy that has been behind the murder of Protestant missionaries in Latin America, millions of Jews throughout history, and slaughter of Protestants in Europe and the complete genocides of thousands of real Christians prior to the reformation, and the continuing persecutor and murder (to this very day) of tens of thousands of Latin Americans, that I am literally sick to my stomache if I have to hear another word of it? And here comes your article on the INQUISITIONS?

I mean really? Help me understand (1) Why on earth would you ever call this demonically bizarre distortion "Christian" and (2) why would you even bother to try to defend it? It's not yours! Baptists didn't have INQUISITIONS, they were killed in them!

Seriously, I really am asking you to help me understand, how on earth anyone with any more than John 3:16 memorized, could possibly get here defending Roman Catholic Inquisitions which murdered en masse their own historical forefathers???

Are you now a NAZI?

I hope God will open your eyes to what you have written. May God have mercy.

PS. If you do not really know the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal savior, I would like to invite you to accept him today and put your faith in his finished work of atonement for your sins, that by Grace through faith you are saved, and you have direct access to the throne of heaven without the need of a mediator between God and Man.(called a Pope or anything else). If this is NOT the "Lord Jesus Christ" you know, you really should wipe the slate clean and start all over. (That's the only one that saves)

As an aside, the historical claims made above were checked and found to be bunk, including the "martyred saitn" quote - which he was asked to document, and which he dodged doing.

The May 2013 John Loftus Collection

Nothing for John this month.

The Atheist Collection
NormATive goes for Platinum spin:

That's the point of Mark 3. You don't know for sure. I could be a Christian pretending to be a non-theist just to see how other Christians respond. I could quite easily be someone from your very own church. You don't know for sure. Therefore, if you ascribe the work of Satan to what I am doing, you might possibly be blaspheming the Holy Spirit.

firstfloor comes close too:

In your case, I have concluded that interfaith dialogue will not work. Your best hope is full strength enlightenment in the style of Dan Barker who having reached the apogee of evangelism had only one way to go. It is a path well trodden by honourable men of reason.

JimL solves Jer. 7:22, fundy atheist style:

Well, of course. Did you think that I didn't realize that you would argue that the passage doesn't mean exactly what it actually says. To the apologist it always means something other than what it actually says if it is contradictory. Let me show again exactly what Jeremiah 7:22 explicitly states in Gods own words: "In speaking to your fathers in the day I brought them out of the land of Egypt "I gave them no command concerning holocaust or sacrifice."Now, did God, or did God not, give such commands? Yes he did. So, that is not a negation idiom, a " this but not that." Its an explicit statement of fact. "I gave them no such commands." Now in order to maintain consistency you have to come up with something to explain away this contradiction and so you come up with 'oh thats just a negation idiom. Negation idioms are not unique to Hebrew thought, what they are unique to are to the apologists for Hebrew contradictions."

NormATive has a new history for us:

I think that Jesus was a Jewish reformer who studied under Hillel (it's quite possible, since the Talmud tells us he lived to be over 100 years old). I don't believe that he saw himself as a god, and in fact, I think would be incensed at the idea.

I think that the original four gospels were attempts to re-imagine Jesus as Moschiach, and there were attempts to broaden the Jewish promise to include Gentiles (probably to help raise capital to build churches). Somehow that got turned into the bizarre, god-man, blood sacrifice and resurrection / apocalypse cult that modern Christianity has embraced.

I see this as an unfortunate thing, because what Jesus was purported to have been teaching is far more valuable than the apocalyptic thing. I think that even in spite of this diversion, the story of Jesus has profoundly changed modern human culture for the better.

YT fundy atheist whiner Matthijs Noyce on my Elisha vid:

I was about to make an argument, but this video is censored, meaning that I have lost all respect for you. This disrespect crosses the boundaries of religion to make me see you as someone who opposes free speech. As such, your opinions are worth nothing to me. I know noone will ever see this comment but you, but I leave it anyway to inform you that your censoring is opposed to free speech and implies a fear of debate. Good day.

Moderation: The all purpose excuse to turn tail and run.

OmniSkeptical pleads irrelevancy:

I have noticed how Tyndale renders John 1:3, "All things were made through it." Really, salvation has nothing to do with the afterlife anymore, so please pretend not to taste death somewhere else.

Jungle George on textual criticism:

For example: A writes X, and B writes Y on similar topic and Y becomes mistakenly accepted as being written by A with X lost. Textual criticism will hopefully uncover word changes, multiple authors, and so on, but it can never get back to X since all the copies are based on Y. And since the author is believed to be A you canít prove it is or isnít just from that. If you have multiple documents supposedly by the same author, you can compare to see if the wording, phrases, etc. are similar to believe common authorship, but that may not prove the identity of the specific author. So thatís what Iím saying for example: just because you may have 10 copies of something and can do lots of ďtextual criticismĒ with it, it doesnít prove that those copies are actually from what was written by person A. And although some changes might be evident, changes made before the 10 copies are not always detectable if they donít stand out for some reason, like written in a similar fashion to the rest of the document.

Immanuel Ozaetta, ironically:

Very intolerant? Did he [Richard Dawkins] ever harm any person? Did he ever personally attacked (sic) you? So being a scientist, speaking his mind, doing activism to prevent religion running politics which causes many atrocities, like genocide( Christians killing Jews), terrorist attack( Christians bombing clinics), etc. Is as bad as rape, murder, genocide, incestrtc (sic), according to you?

Seasanctuary butters on the rear and sits on the slippery slope:

Incest in itself is not harmful, but persecuting people for it is. This is another area that I hope people will start to see is just knee-jerk cultural bigotry. Until then, it works as a good test of a person's ability to think things through themselves.

The Christian and Theist Collection

Epoetker signs his KKK membership card:

Generally being a racist and a sexist is all about ensuring a proper environment to raise children. Food, education, and housing is either lacking or profoundly corrupted in any environment where black people dominate, and no adult with more than two brain cells to rub together would ever send their children to learn in a black school or play in a black neighborhood.

Looney YT fundy William Tapley says, go to Burger King, get demon infested:

But we should all be as vigilant as we can. Pray for discernment. The blood sacrifices have continued, and the burnt offerings are located on your barbecue. From what I've learned so far, it seems as if certain spirits actually inhabit our bodies and thrive off the taste. It has to do with what Yeshua said about the thief coming to steal from our 'houses' or bodies?

So says in the same way, TrustinJC:

You just keep rejecting books like Enoch, Shepherd of Hermas, 2 Esdras, The Didache, Peter's Epistle to James, The Gospel According to Thomas, and Clementines Homilies in favor of Paul's epistles and see where it gets you come judgement day. As Enoch tells us, every knee will eventually bend, but for many it will be too late. And as Peter tells us, only a few Gentiles from a multitude will be saved. You've been warned. It's now on you.

stefcui, on where dinosaurs came from:

The giants that occurred during this time, such as the dinosaurs and megafauna, are reasons given in genesis 6 of why God had brought the flood in the first place. Giants were born in those times. The angels that came down to mix seed with females did not only procreate with humans - they procreated with animals and birds and fishes, creating what is called the Jurasic age. This did not occur 250 million years ago, but it occurred during the time of Enoch and Noah, some 4000-5000 years ago.

Seasancturary, after sliding down the slope:

Hopefully soon. Incest in itself is not harmful, but persecuting people for it is. This is another area that I hope people will start to see is just knee-jerk cultural bigotry. Until then, it works as a good test of a person's ability to think things through themselves. -- Platinum nom, at large. -- Platinum nom, Christian. Platinum Book Award.

To Michael: