Thursday, May 13, 2010

Lets Stay On Topic

I appreciate all that Jon Rowe wrote in response to my last post but I think much of it is getting us off topic. The topic is whether the Declaration of Independence was a document of interpositon or not. Jon Rowe stated his case that it was not and called his main witness, John Calvin. My last post clearly shows that Calvin is not a reliable witness in this case because his own words contradict themselves.

Jon's response to this was:

"KOI claims the Othniel example a contradiction in Calvin's writings. Personally, I don't see it. Calvin teaches God sometimes raises up individuals to deliver from tyranny. AND that sometimes the means those individuals use is righteous, sometimes sinful. Likewise, this accords with Gregg Frazer's understanding that, yes, it was God's will that the American Revolution resulted as it did. But that George Washington et al. used SINFUL MEANS to accomplish that end. Indeed, Frazer and Calvin both teach God sometimes uses the sinful means of man to accomplish his will. I can't tell from Calvin's context whether he thought Othniel was one righteously raised up or rather God using "the fury of [a man] who ha[d] other thoughts and other aims," to accomplish His ends. But in any event, there is no apparent contradiction."

First things first. It is abudantly clear in Calvin's text that Othniel was "righteously" raised up. Here is Calvin again:

"At one time he raises up manifest avengers from among his own servants and gives them his command to punish accursed tyranny and deliver his people from calamity when they are unjustly oppressed; at another time he employs, for this purpose, the fury of men who have other thoughts and other aims. Thus he rescued his people Israel from the tyranny of Pharaoh by Moses; from the violence of Chusa, king of Syria, by Othniel; and from other bondage by other kings or judges. Thus he tamed the pride of Tyre by the Egyptians; the insolence of the Egyptians by the Assyrians; the ferocity of the Assyrians by the Chaldeans; the confidence of Babylon by the Medes and Persians"

Jon does a great job with studying the history associated with the founding and religion. But I have cautioned him more than once to make sure he reads and understands the biblical stories that are mentioned for himself and not just read what other's write about it. If you know the stories that Calvin cites here it is clear that Othniel is paired up with Moses as those who were "commanded to punish tyranny." The other stories below were of one pagan power against another and illustrate the ill intent of a group or individual being used of God to bring about His will that Frazer talks about. This is clear and undisputable if one understands these stories from the bible.

With that stated, if Calvin acknowledges that Othniel's actions "to punish tyranny" were valid he thus endorses the taking up of arms against a standing king in one breath and in the next limits one's actions against a tyrant king to what Frazer states is something akin to our modern impeachment. His biblical example does not mesh with his historical examples. It is that simple. All the rest of the talk about hermeneutics and revelation is just smoke and mirrors. The simple fact is that Mr. Rowe's chief witness has been discredited and thus his case against the Declaration of Independence being a document of interposition should be dismissed. That is unless he has other witnesses.

As for me, I call John Ponet to the stand...

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