Monday, October 07, 2013

Bishop James White on the Book of James: His Juvenile "Challenge" Will be Met




 By Catholic Apologist Dave Armstrong

Facebook friend L Niall Quinn recently directed my attention to one of Bishop White's innumerable hit pieces against me: one of his Dividing Line webcasts. This show was dated 2-19-08, and in it, he was mocking, ridiculing, constantly laughing and yucking it up like a drunk middle schooler, playing clips of the songs Liar (Three Dog Night) and Honesty (Billy Joel) and just having a grand old time conveying 5,390,712 ways to his fawning audience what an idiot, imbecile, and all-around ignoramus I supposedly am.

This is his normal modus operandi, folks. If he didn't act like an insufferably pompous, condescending ass when he deals with Catholics (and almost above all, with me), he wouldn't be James White: the Grand Poobah and Imperial Wizard of all Anti-Catholics.


White was "critiquing" (if we can call it that) a radio interview I did on 2-15-08, on the Spirit Morning Show, with Bruce and Kris McGregor. It was mostly about my book, The One-Minute Apologist. He played little clips of my comments (provided by equally vitriolic anti-Catholic James Swan, who is on record stating that I am a "psychotic"), and then proceeded to ridicule and mock them, in his inimitable, obnoxiously juvenile "style".

Around the 20 minute mark, he went after some comments I made on James 2. Here is what he says:

I don't know how long I spent, writing the chapter on James 2 in The God Who Justifies. . . . I've never seen a meaningful refutation or even an attempted refutation of that chapter . . . and I'll tell you one thing. Dave will call this mocking. This isn't mocking; this is a simple fact. That man is not up to even trying. He doesn't have the skills; he doesn't have the background; he doesn't have the training; . . . Roman Catholic apologists . . . don't keep up with what anyone else is saying, who's providing a response to them . . .

Right. White was ranting about how we Catholic apologists don't read his books or bother to refute them, and allegedly don't interact with our best opponents, generally (of course he assumes that he is among those "best"). That's news to me. I guess that's why I wrote, Pillars of Sola Scriptura, which examined in great depth the two men that Protestants consider the best historic defenders of sola Scriptura: William Whitaker (1548-1595) -- White wrote that he was one of "a few godly servants of the truth have invested the time and effort necessary to produce for God's people a full-orbed defense of Scriptural sufficiency" -- and William Goode (1801-1868). These guys are considered (including by White and his anti-Catholic cronies) the cream of the crop. I did a 310-page book in response to them, citing them massively. 


I guess that's why his two big buddies, David T. King and William Webster (supposedly, profound Protestant apologists), have never responded to any of the several in-depth critiques I have done of their "work." King has been smarting since way back in 2002, when I blew out of the water his contention (yawn, zzzz) that Pope St. Pius X thought Blessed Cardinal Newman was a theological liberal, who espoused evolution of dogma rather than development of doctrine. Once I produced a letter from that saintly pope to the contrary, that was all over, and King -- clearly embarrassed, since he had been saying on a discussion board that Catholics were so stupid for not knowing that Newman was heterodox -- has utterly ignored me ever since (except for vehement insults).  

I replied to Webster's historically absurd arguments at great length in 2000 and in 2003. I've never heard a peep from him, ever. Zero, zilch, nada.  

Later, I showed how King and Webster's big three-volume set about sola Scriptura was self-published (White has been mocking my self-published books -- which are not all of my books -- for many years now).

I guess, too, my desire to ignore the most able critics of Catholicism is why I did a 388-page book in which I responded line-by-line to the entirety of Book IV of Institutes of the Christian Religion, by John Calvin. The book is called Biblical Catholic Answers for John Calvin. I did a follow-up in which I dealt with large portions of Books I-III of the Institutes, too: A Biblical Critique of Calvinism.

I guess this is why I have huge web pages devoted to both Calvin and Martin Luther, the founder of Protestantism, and a book about the latter (with scores and scores of their own words and arguments dealt with; why I have extensive papers taking on other Protestant figures of the period, like Chemnitz and Melanchthon, and Zwingli.

It's all, you see, because I want to ignore my best opponents. White talks about how his books are ignored by Catholics. Well, as of yet, I see no Protestants champing at the bit to come and refute any of these books of mine, nor a book that is a direct assault on one of the sacred pillars of Protestantism: my 100 Biblical Arguments Against Sola Scriptura. So two can play at that game.

I ignore White and his books, for the most part, because he has shown himself an intellectual coward for now 18 years since I have encountered him. He ran from our first lengthy "postal debate" (leaving my final 36 pages of reply completely unanswered, as they remain to this day).

He split from a live chat in his own chat room (Dec. 2000), about Mariology, where I had no notes and talked spontaneously with him, because one of his Reformed apologist underlings gave up in the debate that had been carefully planned (leaving halfway through it). We were going along, and I started answering all his questions, and asking him some difficult ones, and all of a sudden he had "technical problems," disappeared and was never heard from again, while I stayed in his own room for another 90 minutes chatting with folks.

He consistently refused further live chats. He has refused to go more than one round in any written encounters we have had, from 1995 up to the present. His usual method is to offer some halfway rational critique of something I wrote, then I reply point-by-point, refuting his stuff, at which point he completely ignores my counter-reply and descends to mockery and lying about both my argument and my abilities. See many many papers about White on my "Anti-Catholicism" page.

This has been his record, and why I don't waste much time on him, and why virtually no one else of note in the Catholic apologetics world does anymore, either. He has forfeited his "right" to be taken seriously by anyone, because of these dual characteristics: his intellectual cowardice and his insufferably insulting and asinine behavior with almost all of those he disagrees with. No one has time for that anymore.

But I am happy to make an exception to my usual rule of ignoring anti-Catholic polemics (in place since 2007). White thinks I ignore anti-Catholics now because I am so deathly afraid of their profound, sublime arguments. Let him think what he will. I'll be happy to take on a chapter of his book, just as I have taken on entire books written by Calvin, Goode, Whitaker, and other Protestant apologists. I saw a copy of his screed for 34 cents on amazon. That seemed about right. Perhaps someone could send me an e-book text if they have one, so I can cut-and-paste his comments.


Remember White's words: "That man [yours truly] is not up to even trying [to refute his chapter on James 2]. He doesn't have the skills; he doesn't have the background; he doesn't have the training . . ."

All the more reason for the silliness of White's running from my critiques of his illogical utterly incoherent garbage for 18 years now. He's got the Master's degree (from Fuller Theological Seminary) and the illegitimate "doctorate" from an unaccredited school [see analyses on that: one / two / three].
What's he so scared of? I don't have any theological degrees or formal training in that field (plenty of informal training and hundreds of books read over 35 years).

Will he even reply to my critique? Probably not, but if he does, almost certainly he'll follow his universal past record: respond once in a pseudo-scholarly, semi-behaved manner, engaging in his usual obfuscation, cynical selectivity, and sophistry. I'll then respond to that and he'll either utterly ignore it, simply repeat what I just refuted, again, or start in with the wholesale mocking and jerkdom, just like what we heard in this pathetic, embarrassing Dividing Line show.

Mark my words. I've had 18 years of experience with the man. It's always been the same. He never changes.


[read my critique of White's interpretation of James 2 and make up your own mind]

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1 comment:

Adomnan said...

So Mr. White is convinced that he has made an irrefutable "logical" argument that when James writes "one is justified by works and not by faith alone" what he really means is "one is justified by faith alone, and not by works." Does anyone want to work his way through that mess of sophistry? I'll pass.

Is Bishop White still flashing that phony PhD and claiming to be a Greek scholar? Just because someone occasionally misconstrues a few sentences or a paragraph of the Greek New Testament with the dubious assistance of a lexicon and some third-rate book of Greek grammar "rules" (like Mounce) doesn't make him a Greek scholar. Anyone can do that.