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Appreciation

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  • knoxknoxwhosthere
    Dear Everyone, All the furor over The Passion of Christ has presented me with an opportunity of explaining the second commandment to a group of ladies on a
    Message 1 of 16 , Mar 23, 2004
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      Dear Everyone,

      All the furor over "The Passion of Christ" has presented me with an
      opportunity of explaining the second commandment to a group of ladies
      on a Christian childbirth professionals list that I am on. As I was
      casting about for succinct ways of trying to explain why I believe
      this movie is a violation of the 2nd commandment, the thought
      occurred to me: "I bet Gerry, BD, et al., had something to say on
      the topic!"

      Due to time constraints, I usually read this list on the web as I am
      able. Imagine my delight to learn I was right and the posts didn't
      disappoint me. Thanks for helping to make my job a whole lot
      easier. Many of the typical objections were voiced and answered.

      Gerry, I was delighted to see you now have a blog going. I'm going
      to add you to the sidebar on my blog.

      For Christ's Crown and Covenant,
      Cheryl
      Communicant Member, RPNA (YEAH! -- All my kids are baptized now!!)
    • Vincent R. Skolny
      Here is a simple argument, anecdote really, that might allow some evangelical types with such little regard for and/or understanding of the Law that the
      Message 2 of 16 , Mar 24, 2004
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        Here is a simple argument, anecdote really, that might allow
        some 'evangelical' types with such little regard for and/or
        understanding of the Law that the obvious idolatry of this movie is
        lost on them.

        *Anytime* we can say "starring *anybody* as Jesus Christ" isn't there
        *something* wrong?

        Vince Skolny, Member
        Covenant Reformed Chapel
        Greentown, Ohio





        --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "knoxknoxwhosthere"
        <cherylgrenon@l...> wrote:
        > Dear Everyone,
        >
        > All the furor over "The Passion of Christ" has presented me with an
        > opportunity of explaining the second commandment to a group of
        ladies
        > on a Christian childbirth professionals list that I am on. As I was
        > casting about for succinct ways of trying to explain why I believe
        > this movie is a violation of the 2nd commandment, the thought
        > occurred to me: "I bet Gerry, BD, et al., had something to say on
        > the topic!"
        >
        > Due to time constraints, I usually read this list on the web as I
        am
        > able. Imagine my delight to learn I was right and the posts didn't
        > disappoint me. Thanks for helping to make my job a whole lot
        > easier. Many of the typical objections were voiced and answered.
        >
        > Gerry, I was delighted to see you now have a blog going. I'm going
        > to add you to the sidebar on my blog.
        >
        > For Christ's Crown and Covenant,
        > Cheryl
        > Communicant Member, RPNA (YEAH! -- All my kids are baptized now!!)
      • knoxknoxwhosthere
        Dear Vincent, As I mentioned to someone else, the idea of playing any member of the Godhead strikes me as being so blasphemous as to make me catch my breath
        Message 3 of 16 , Mar 24, 2004
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          Dear Vincent,

          As I mentioned to someone else, the idea of playing any member of the
          Godhead strikes me as being so blasphemous as to make me catch my
          breath with horror. The "Jesus" that is typically portrayed is the
          *safe* accessible Jesus, and never as He is described in Revelations
          1 or 19.

          Some people are slow learners when coming to this sort of thing. And
          speaking of slow learners, I understand that the fellow who portrayed
          Christ in "The Passion" was literally struck by lightening while
          acting the part. People often jokingly say that if God didn't want
          them to do something, he would strike them with lightening. What do
          you say to the very guy who was and yet keeps on going???

          Cheryl




          --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Vincent R. Skolny"
          <vskolny@e...> wrote:
          > Here is a simple argument, anecdote really, that might allow
          > some 'evangelical' types with such little regard for and/or
          > understanding of the Law that the obvious idolatry of this movie is
          > lost on them.
          >
          > *Anytime* we can say "starring *anybody* as Jesus Christ" isn't
          there
          > *something* wrong?
          >
          > Vince Skolny, Member
          > Covenant Reformed Chapel
          > Greentown, Ohio
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > --- In
          covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "knoxknoxwhosthere"
          > <cherylgrenon@l...> wrote:
          > > Dear Everyone,
          > >
          > > All the furor over "The Passion of Christ" has presented me with
          an
          > > opportunity of explaining the second commandment to a group of
          > ladies
          > > on a Christian childbirth professionals list that I am on. As I
          was
          > > casting about for succinct ways of trying to explain why I
          believe
          > > this movie is a violation of the 2nd commandment, the thought
          > > occurred to me: "I bet Gerry, BD, et al., had something to say
          on
          > > the topic!"
          > >
          > > Due to time constraints, I usually read this list on the web as I
          > am
          > > able. Imagine my delight to learn I was right and the posts
          didn't
          > > disappoint me. Thanks for helping to make my job a whole lot
          > > easier. Many of the typical objections were voiced and answered.
          > >
          > > Gerry, I was delighted to see you now have a blog going. I'm
          going
          > > to add you to the sidebar on my blog.
          > >
          > > For Christ's Crown and Covenant,
          > > Cheryl
          > > Communicant Member, RPNA (YEAH! -- All my kids are baptized now!!)
        • Colin
          ... ladies ... Cheryl, I have news for you, there were no actual depictions of *God* in the film. Hence, no violations of the second commandment. Colin
          Message 4 of 16 , Mar 24, 2004
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            --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "knoxknoxwhosthere"
            <cherylgrenon@l...> wrote:
            > Dear Everyone,
            >
            > All the furor over "The Passion of Christ" has presented me with an
            > opportunity of explaining the second commandment to a group of
            ladies
            > on a Christian childbirth professionals list that I am on. As I was
            > casting about for succinct ways of trying to explain why I believe
            > this movie is a violation of the 2nd commandment, the thought
            > occurred to me: "I bet Gerry, BD, et al., had something to say on
            > the topic!"

            Cheryl, I have news for you, there were no actual depictions of *God*
            in the film. Hence, no violations of the second commandment.

            Colin
          • s.padbury@tiscali.co.uk
            (Sorry if the discussion is closed - I ve been sick a while and I am only now catching up on emails from last week.) Hi Colin, I m trying to summarize your
            Message 5 of 16 , Mar 29, 2004
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              (Sorry if the discussion is closed - I've been sick a while and I am only
              now catching up on emails from last week.)

              Hi Colin,

              I'm trying to summarize your argument in my own words, because I haven't
              seen your position laid out properly all in one place. Sorry if my representation
              (or 'image' you could say) is not accurate -- I'm trying my best to *not*
              set up a straw man, but to make a representation of your position as accurately
              as I can. Anything I've misrepresented, please clarify.

              1. You say that Christ's body (not his spirit) is not God, and that therefore
              to portray the body of Christ is not to portray God or any part of God,
              and thus doesn't break any commandment. Thus you completely deny that at
              the incarnation the fleshly Body of Christ was so united to the spirit of
              Christ that it also became divine.

              2. You say that it is okay, perhaps more than okay, to portray the body
              of Christ (either as a painting or an icon or a reenactment or play or whatever),
              or at least someone's best guess of what this looked like -- because the
              body of Christ is not God, and therefore to portray the body of Christ breaks
              no commandment.

              3. You say that since Christ (incarnate) is the image of God, therefore
              to make an image of this image of God breaks God's commandment. Yet you
              say that simply to portray the body of Christ breaks no commandment, because
              Christ (Who is God) is not his body, but only his spirit.

              4. You say that the body of Christ is not a part of the image of God in
              Christ. And even though Christ is God, and Christ is both spirit and body
              in composite, still you argue that it breaks no commandment to portray part
              of Christ (i.e., not His spirit but His body only), because you deny, I
              think, that part of Christ (i.e., his body) is God.

              5. You say that it's okay to portray the body of Christ (or someone's best
              guess of this) because this is not to portray God, but just the body of
              Christ. You say that only to portray the whole person of Christ (body and
              spirit) would be wrong, a violation of the Second Commandment. Yet somehow
              you're arguing to portray part of Christ (i.e., only his body) doesn't violate
              the commandment; and you argue this by denying that the body of Christ is
              part of Christ, who is himself God.

              6. You say that it's okay to portray the body of Christ - but do you say
              that it is okay to portray the Man Christ? Because the Man Christ is not
              just body, but also spirit. No, it can't be that you're saying it is okay
              to portray the Man Christ (body and Spirit) because this would be to portray
              God (or at least the Spirit of God in the Man Christ), and thereby violate
              the commandment. Thus you're arguing only that portrayals of the body of
              Christ are okay.

              7. You say that God's commandment addresses the matter of trying to portray
              God, or the Spirit of God, whether in Christ or otherwise; and therefore
              it does not address the matter of portraying the body of Christ (because
              the body of Christ is not the Spirit and it is not God). If so, did Christ
              mean, "Anyone who has seen my Spirit has seen the Father"? (If yes, please
              explain how anyone cold have seen his spirit through his body.) And did
              Christ mean, "(Not by body but) my Spirit and my Father are one"? In short,
              are you really arguing that the body of the Man Christ is not God, and neither
              indeed is it Christ, seeing that Christ is God?

              8. Moving on to consider the commandment in question, and away from this
              body of Christ which you deny is part of God (and maybe deny that it is
              part of Christ too): Do you also argue that the Second Commandment has to
              do with bowing down and worshipping a man-graven 'represenation' of God
              (or some aspect of Him) and bowing down to worship it; and that therefore
              the commandment does not address images of (part of) God made for purposes
              other than worship?

              If so, how would you judge that some image or icon or model or representation
              or reenactment or whatever (one that intended to portray any member of the
              Trinity) was a worthy representation, and would not offend God in some way?

              Notice that I am not addressing the matter of sculpting or painting a pillar
              of flame or a burning bush or a dove (not that I approve of seeking to represent
              God in these ways either, at least because these things can become a stumbling
              block even as a serpent on a pole can). I am asking you to prove that men
              such as ourselves can lawfully and worthily portray any member of the Trinity
              (or part thereof), for purposes other than worship.

              Yours sincerely,

              Simon Padbury.


              __________________________________________________
              Broadband from an unbeatable £15.99!

              http://www.tiscali.co.uk/products/broadband/home.html?code=SM-NL-11AM
            • thebishopsdoom
              Simon, At a cursory glance, unless I m mistaken, I was not certain whether you have accurately represented the argument as I think it as intended. Where
              Message 6 of 16 , Mar 29, 2004
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                Simon,
                At a cursory glance, unless I'm mistaken, I was not certain whether
                you have accurately represented the argument as I think it as
                intended. Where hitherto I think the lines of argumentation have
                attemped to be laid on either side are along the following:
                Either
                1. the commandment extends only to subtance / nature, not Persons,
                or
                2. in a portrait, a person is not portrayed, but rather a nature,
                (or a combination of both: that the prohibition extends only to the
                divine nature but in a portrait neither divine nature nor hypostasis
                are portrayed)
                Plus, in addition to one of the above,
                3. corporeal, physical flesh is itself not divine in nature, and can
                physically be painted, thus Christ's as well, and thereby it may be
                painted or otherwise portrayed either (depending on which argument is
                used above) a. as the substance of human flesh enhypostasized by the
                Logos (and assuming that the prohibition extends not to Persons but
                only to either natures or substances) or b. (if #2 above is argued)
                that what is portrayed is human nature revealed non-hypostatically.

                What I think the response to this generally has been is:
                As to 1. above:
                a. a question as to whether it is correct that the prohibition does
                not extend to Persons but only the divine nature
                and
                b. confessionally, the Westminster Standards do interpret the command
                in respect to Persons.
                As to both 1. and 2. above:
                that in an image - whether you, Christ, or George Clooney - the image
                is of not one's nature, but is an image of a hypostasis.
                And as to 3b. above:
                that if one theoretically assumes that one could portray the
                physiological material of human flesh in a manner that would convey
                it somehow as non-hypostatic, then it can not thereby be an image of
                Jesus of Nazareth, since His flesh though it has no human hypostasis,
                is yet enhypostasized in the divine Logos, in which the two natures
                are united so that though in the image only one of those natures is
                visible, it is not an image of a half-Christ when the hypostasis is
                visibly imaged, and may be properly deemed an image of a divine
                hypostasis.
                If I'm not mistaken, then, the main argument is either that an image
                is not of a hypostases, else that the prohibition does not extend to
                hypostases, but only to nature.
              • Colin
                ... Thanks BD for writing a very succinct summary of the issues under debate. I very much appreciate it. (Hence the current Thread title is more than
                Message 7 of 16 , Mar 30, 2004
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                  --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, thebishopsdoom
                  <no_reply@y...> wrote:
                  > Simon,
                  > At a cursory glance, unless I'm mistaken, I was not certain whether
                  > you have accurately represented the argument as I think it as
                  > intended.

                  Thanks BD for writing a very succinct summary of the issues under
                  debate. I very much appreciate it. (Hence the current Thread title is
                  more than appropriate).

                  Colin

                  > Where hitherto I think the lines of argumentation have
                  > attemped to be laid on either side are along the following:
                  > Either
                  > 1. the commandment extends only to subtance / nature, not Persons,
                  > or
                  > 2. in a portrait, a person is not portrayed, but rather a nature,
                  > (or a combination of both: that the prohibition extends only to the
                  > divine nature but in a portrait neither divine nature nor
                  > hypostasis are portrayed)
                  > Plus, in addition to one of the above,
                  > 3. corporeal, physical flesh is itself not divine in nature, and
                  > can physically be painted, thus Christ's as well, and thereby it
                  > may be
                  > painted or otherwise portrayed either (depending on which argument
                  > is used above) a. as the substance of human flesh enhypostasized by
                  > the Logos (and assuming that the prohibition extends not to Persons
                  > but only to either natures or substances) or b. (if #2 above is
                  > argued)
                  > that what is portrayed is human nature revealed non-hypostatically.
                  >
                  > What I think the response to this generally has been is:
                  > As to 1. above:
                  > a. a question as to whether it is correct that the prohibition does
                  > not extend to Persons but only the divine nature
                  > and
                  > b. confessionally, the Westminster Standards do interpret the
                  > command in respect to Persons.
                  > As to both 1. and 2. above:
                  > that in an image - whether you, Christ, or George Clooney - the
                  > image
                  > is of not one's nature, but is an image of a hypostasis.
                  > And as to 3b. above:
                  > that if one theoretically assumes that one could portray the
                  > physiological material of human flesh in a manner that would convey
                  > it somehow as non-hypostatic, then it can not thereby be an image
                  > of Jesus of Nazareth, since His flesh though it has no human
                  > hypostasis,
                  > is yet enhypostasized in the divine Logos, in which the two natures
                  > are united so that though in the image only one of those natures is
                  > visible, it is not an image of a half-Christ when the hypostasis is
                  > visibly imaged, and may be properly deemed an image of a divine
                  > hypostasis.
                  > If I'm not mistaken, then, the main argument is either that an
                  > image is not of a hypostases, else that the prohibition does not
                  > extend to hypostases, but only to nature.
                • s.padbury@tiscali.co.uk
                  Hi BD, If so, Colin is arguing that it is okay to portray the substance/nature of
                  Message 8 of 16 , Mar 31, 2004
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                    Hi BD,

                    <<Either 1. the commandment extends only to subtance / nature, not Persons,>>

                    If so, Colin is arguing that it is okay to portray the substance/nature
                    of Christ but not his Person? In my critique I am equating Christ's substance/nature
                    with his Body. If you substitute 'substance/nature' for 'Body' in my critique,
                    my critique is still valid.

                    <<or 2. in a portrait, a person is not portrayed, but rather a nature, (or
                    a combination of both: that the prohibition extends only to the divine nature
                    but in a portrait neither divine nature nor hypostasis are portrayed).>>

                    But the intent of an artist in portraying the body (I admit he cannot paint
                    the life/spirit) is either to portray the *person*, or if he is painting
                    the corpse of Christ he is seeking to portray the sacrificial atonement
                    of the *Person* that is Christ (or his heretical version of it). Either
                    way, my critique is still valid.

                    <<Plus, in addition to one of the above, 3. corporeal, physical flesh is
                    itself not divine in nature, and can physically be painted, thus Christ's
                    as well, and thereby it may be painted or otherwise portrayed either (depending
                    on which argument is used above) a. as the substance of human flesh enhypostasized
                    by the Logos (and assuming that the prohibition extends not to Persons but
                    only to either natures or substances) or b. (if #2 above is argued) that
                    what is portrayed is human nature revealed non-hypostatically.>>

                    We are talking about the corporeal, physical flesh of Christ, the God-Man,
                    the Word become flesh. I am trying to maintain the argument that at the
                    Incarnation, the Flesh of Christ became so inextricably linked to the Spirit
                    of Christ, that the unified Whole must be considered as Divine. As a Man,
                    Christ *is* both His Body and His Spirit in a union that only God Himself
                    can separate. Therefore, I argue, no other man can (try to) portray the
                    Body (or physical substance/nature) of *Christ* without (trying to) portray
                    *God* (or the corpse of *God*), and thereby his graven or painted image
                    of Christ (who is God) breaks the Second Commandment.

                    <<What I think the response to this generally has been is: As to 1. above:
                    a. a question as to whether it is correct that the prohibition does not
                    extend to Persons but only the divine nature and b. confessionally, the
                    Westminster Standards do interpret the command in respect to Persons.>>

                    The prohibition of the Second Commandment is against portraying/graving
                    anything with the intent of worshipping it, and this prohibition must extend
                    to God Himself. Why? Because God forbade the manufacture of images of any
                    thing in Heaven or on Earth or in the Seas or under the Earth for the intent
                    of worshipping the graven image (or portrait). An addition, for the Christian
                    artist who knows that whatsoever he does he must do to the glory of God,
                    if he intends to portray or make a graven image of any Person of the Trinity,
                    he must realize that to do so is *not* to honour or glorify God; dishonour
                    is inevitably done thereby through misrepresentation. For the sake of the
                    glory of God and the honour of Christ, he ought not even contemplate gravening
                    or painting or acting the part of the Person of Christ or any part of Him,
                    including his body, human nature, or flesh, dead or alive. God can not be
                    pictured. Christ Incarnate - the Man Christ, who is God - is *both* His
                    Body and His Spirit in hypostatic union, and *any* attempt at portraying
                    or sculpting or enacting Christ is inevitably a misrepresentation of Him,
                    and therefore hishonouring to Him.

                    <<As to both 1. and 2. above: that in an image - whether you, Christ, or
                    George Clooney - the image is of not one's nature, but is an image of a
                    hypostasis.>>

                    But neither I myself or George Clooney, or either of our carcases, are covered
                    by the prohibition of the Second Commandment - unless worship is intended
                    to be done thereto. I would not advide it. :o)

                    <<And as to 3b. above: that if one theoretically assumes that one could
                    portray the physiological material of human flesh in a manner that would
                    convey it somehow as non-hypostatic, then it can not thereby be an image
                    of Jesus of Nazareth, since His flesh though it has no human hypostasis,
                    is yet enhypostasized in the divine Logos, in which the two natures are
                    united so that though in the image only one of those natures is visible,
                    it is not an image of a half-Christ when the hypostasis is visibly imaged,
                    and may be properly deemed an image of a divine hypostasis.>>

                    This is well said. But remember that we are not refering to flesh in a general
                    sense, but specifically to *the flesh of God*, of the Incarnate Christ.
                    I'm arguing that to try to portray *this* flesh or body or nature or human
                    nature or Person of Christ is idolatrous and dishonouring to Him, breaking
                    the Second Commandment.

                    <<If I'm not mistaken, then, the main argument is either that an image is
                    not of a hypostases, else that the prohibition does not extend to hypostases,
                    but only to nature.>>

                    IOW, you think the argument of Colin and other likeminded Theonomists and
                    Romanists is that it is okay to portray the nature of Christ, since the
                    prohibition (it is argued, so it seems) does not extend to to the nature
                    (or flesh, or body) of Christ. IMO the argument fails, since it denies the
                    Biblical doctrine of the Incarnation, which includes the teaching that the
                    Man Christ is comprised of both His Body and His Spirit.

                    And even if the argument did not fail, in that film it is more than just
                    the nature or flesh of Christ is seeking to be portrayed. Besides there
                    being copious quantities of blood and gore (and how any Christian could
                    wish to defend such violent movies such as this is beyond my wit), it also
                    remains true that a person (the actor) is seeking to be a portrayal of the
                    *Person* of Christ. The enacting of this role, and indeed the whole movie
                    therefore, is a violent and blasphemous and heretical violation of the Second
                    Commandment.

                    That is what Colin the Theonomist is seeking to defend and promote.

                    Sincere Regards,

                    Simon.


                    __________________________________________________
                    Broadband from an unbeatable £15.99!

                    http://www.tiscali.co.uk/products/broadband/home.html?code=SM-NL-11AM
                  • s.padbury@tiscali.co.uk
                    Hi BD, and all, {BD, I thought I would also send my response to you [slightly corrected, e.g., typos] on this list, now that something has become evident to me
                    Message 9 of 16 , Apr 1, 2004
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                      Hi BD, and all,

                      {BD, I thought I would also send my response to you [slightly corrected,
                      e.g., typos] on this list, now that something has become evident to me (see
                      what I write in some background information below). I dislike having to
                      bring this up again, but I think I must do so because many long-standing
                      members of this list will be aware of at least some of what has been going
                      on between myself and Colin. So, dor some background information.....}

                      You may be aware of some of the history emnity between Colin and I. If not,
                      here: Since I mentioned on that list that I think Theonomy is an error,
                      and consequently Colin became agitated and sought to devend and promote
                      Theonomy/Christian Reconstructionism at great length over a year ago.

                      Colin repeatedly accused me of being "slanderous" (because I said his presbyterian
                      Theonomist heros were opposing WCF 19.4), "wicked" and "ungodly" (because
                      I opposed Theonomy's errors, and he thinks that all who do so are antinomian,
                      and if we persist in it after a Theonomist has tried to 'educate' us, therefore
                      we must be reprobate and blind), and "ignorant" (because I admitted that
                      I had not read as many Theonomist books as he had, and I had no wish to
                      do so).

                      I temporarily left the group while relocating to Stockton-on-Tees, and then
                      ex-Theonomist Greg Loren Durand stepped in and so strongly 'grappled' with
                      him, that Colin lost all the arguments, even many arguments which at that
                      time I myself struggled with. Evidently Greg was the better man for fighting
                      people like Colin!

                      Later I engaged Colin in a series of private emails, trying to get him to
                      retract his outrageous accustions against me. I resumed the debate in private
                      with him, and showed him clearly that I was *not* an antinomian, and that
                      I well knew the arguments of the Theonomists/Christian Reconstructionists
                      from the (fewer) books that I had read by Bahnsen, North, Rushdoony, and
                      on the Chalcedon Foundation websites and many other websites. I showed him
                      that I was a Christian at least as truly as he was, and that I loved the
                      law of God. But Colin completely refused all my attempts at freindly reconsiliation.

                      NEVER have I treated Colin as badly and shamefully as he has treated me.

                      I sincerely believe that it will not be well with his soul unless he 'takes
                      back' what he has said against me. And I would not be surprised that he
                      likewise 'character-assassinates' other Christians for opposing Theonomy/Christian
                      Reconstructionism.

                      Maybe Colin the Theonomist, if he ever had power over me for opposing his
                      preferred form of governing such "slanderous," "wicked," "ungodly" men as
                      myself, would seek to have me stoned to death! I can only conclude that
                      he fully believes I am a heretic, and in the Theonomic system, heretics
                      bust be punished with death.

                      On the more recent matter of disagreement, "The Bishop's Doom" responded
                      to me, seeking to clarify my response to Colin. Actually I have not really
                      begun to respond to Colin, but so far I am merely trying to get him to respond
                      to me as though I were a Christian brother. He is refusing to do so. BD
                      has thought that maybe in my annoyance with Colin, I was also opposing him
                      (BD). BD emailed me in private about this, and I responded in private.

                      But I paste in here my response to BD, for your interest.

                      <><><><><><><><>

                      Greetings BD,

                      I'm sorry if I sounded as though I was taking issue with what you wrote
                      - not at all. I was merely trying to lay out some matters hich I think are
                      important enough to be emphasised in bald terms.

                      I am also trying to elicit a response from Colin which portrays his position
                      plainly, so that it can be critiqued properly. I have used my own words
                      to describe in summary what I think his position might be, and I have invited
                      correction and clarification from him.

                      He is on record in numerous places for holding the opinion that I am wicked,
                      ungodly, slanderous, ignorant (his words). Therefore I have 'taken the liberty'
                      of winding him up a little with my post. My aim therein is to get him to
                      defend himself against what I have said I think his position is (which I
                      described in my own words). I hope this cuts out much that is superfluous
                      and focuses on the Commandment in question, which he as a Theonomist likes
                      to think he knows very well (and he thinks he knows very well that his position
                      on portayals of Christ the Man is not addressed by this Commandment).

                      I have been hinting, "Is it because you think you think the Man Christ was
                      not God?" He'll deny it. "Is it because you think the Body of Christ is
                      not part of Christ - i.e., that there is a part of the Man Christ that is/was
                      not God?" Hopefully he'll deny that too. "What then? Is it because the Commandment
                      pertains to worship, and worship is not intended to be done to, e.g., Mel
                      Gibson's film?" Ah, here's the focus of the Commandment.

                      Thus, I have been showing that at the Incarnation, Christ "became flesh"
                      as the God-Man, and that therefore it is actually *God* who is seeking to
                      be portrayed, *not* merely a body-which-is-not-God, (or moreover, if he's
                      clever enough to see the point you're making, an-image-of-a-body-which-is-not-in-itself-God).
                      So firstly, we have to be clear that the "I" which the Incarnate Christ
                      refers to when he says, e.g., "I and my Father are one," most definitely
                      includes his whole manhood, which certainly includes his fleshly body. Some
                      of what Colin has said seems to indicate that he is not clear on this. I
                      want to get this dealt with so that we can move on.

                      Then secondly, I maintain that the moment we assent that an object of man's
                      device *is* a representation of any Member of the Trinity, thereby we have
                      broken the Second Commandment. Therefore both the artist and the viewer
                      who approves of the man-graven image *do* break the second commandment -
                      as I will show:

                      It is inevitable that those who assent that the man-made
                      thing is (even at least somewhat of) a representation of the Godhead, thereby
                      consequently approve of it, and therefore admire it, and therefore worship
                      it.

                      The Second Commandment does not merely cover worship that take place within
                      public acts at stated times, but it covers *any* man-graven image that is
                      intended to portray God. Never can we accept a man-made depiction of anything
                      in the universe, adopting as our own belief concerning that man-made thing,
                      "This is indeed a representation of my god. My god is (even somewhat) like
                      this thing."

                      It is because we always, men always, misrepresent God (Christ
                      Himself alone excepted); and by however much we do so, by that much we dishonour
                      God. And besides this dishonour that is always done, the artist (metal-worker,
                      painter, actor) and the approver thereof are also violating God's revealed
                      commandment.

                      Sorry again BD, if you thought I had an unfreindly attitude toward you.

                      Sincere regards, Simon.

                      <><><><><><><><>



                      __________________________________________________
                      Broadband from an unbeatable £15.99!

                      http://www.tiscali.co.uk/products/broadband/home.html?code=SM-NL-11AM
                    • Colin
                      ... Some significant corrections need to be made to this unusual post by Simon (which at first I thought was some kind of April fool s joke, but apparently he
                      Message 10 of 16 , Apr 5, 2004
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                        --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, s.padbury@t...
                        wrote:
                        > Hi BD, and all,
                        >
                        > {BD, I thought I would also send my response to you [slightly
                        > corrected, e.g., typos] on this list, now that something has become
                        > evident to me (see what I write in some background information
                        > below). I dislike having to bring this up again, but I think I must
                        > do so because many long-standing members of this list will be aware
                        > of at least some of what has been going on between myself and
                        > Colin.

                        Some significant corrections need to be made to this unusual post by
                        Simon (which at first I thought was some kind of April fool's joke,
                        but apparently he seems to be serious).

                        First, there is nothing "going on on" between myself and Simon. I
                        have not had any personal contact with him for over a year.

                        > So, dor some background information.....}
                        >
                        > You may be aware of some of the history emnity between Colin and I.
                        >

                        I wouldn't call it "emnity" on my part.

                        > If not, here: Since I mentioned on that list that I think Theonomy
                        > is an error, and consequently Colin became agitated and sought to
                        > defend and promote Theonomy/Christian Reconstructionism at great
                        > length over a year ago.

                        Ah! the good ol' days! :-) But I don't recall ever getting "agitated".

                        > Colin repeatedly accused me of being "slanderous" (because I said
                        > his presbyterian Theonomist heros were opposing WCF 19.4), "wicked"
                        > and "ungodly" (because I opposed Theonomy's errors,

                        Simon has taken my words out of their original context. I have never
                        called anyone "wicked" or "ungodly" merely because they "opposed
                        Theonomy". But I have occasionally done so for the *way* some have
                        chosen to oppose it when the situation clearly called for it. (i.e.
                        calling a spade a spade).

                        In Simon's case, it would have been better for him to go back to the
                        archives and see my original posts on the matter and then cite my
                        words **in their original context**, instead of his own interpreted
                        context and selective quotation of my words.

                        > and he thinks that all who do so are antinomian,
                        >

                        Again, this is false, and I have never said that "all" those who
                        oppose Theonomy are "antinomian" (though some may well be).

                        I certainly do not do what some Steelites Covenanters do, who call
                        all non-Steelite Presbyterians "backsliders" and "covenant breakers"
                        (never mind what they call all hymn singers!). My point here is that
                        I am far more charitable towards non-Theonomists than some Steelites
                        are to non-Steelites (there are some exceptions of course).

                        > and if we persist in it after a Theonomist has tried to 'educate'
                        > us, therefore we must be reprobate and blind), and "ignorant"
                        > (because I admitted that I had not read as many Theonomist books as
                        > he had, and I had no wish to do so).

                        I have never said nor implied such nonsense.

                        > I temporarily left the group while relocating to Stockton-on-Tees,
                        > and then ex-Theonomist Greg Loren Durand stepped in and so
                        > strongly 'grappled' with him, that Colin lost all the arguments,
                        > even many arguments which at that time I myself struggled with.
                        > Evidently Greg was the better man for fighting people like Colin!

                        Simon is clearly dreaming if he thinks that I "lost" any arguments to
                        Mr. Durand. I have repeatedly engaged him on other forums, and I have
                        so thoroughly refuted his many false accusations and fabrications of
                        facts that he publicly chose to no longer "interact" with me anymore
                        or respond to my e-mails. Durand is not fighter but a quitter.

                        Furthermore, I would readily debate him again if the occasion
                        requires it. His arguments are easy to refute because many of them
                        are either strawmen fallacies, or ad hominem fallacies, or hasty
                        generalization fallacies, or mere scurrilous accusations. He is
                        simply not a serious critic of Theonomy/CR.

                        Remember too that its just as easy to create strawman attacks against
                        Calvinism as it is to do so against Theonomy. The polemical methods
                        are identical in most cases.

                        > Later I engaged Colin in a series of private emails, trying to get
                        > him to retract his outrageous accustions against me.

                        Unfortunately for Simon, he never presented my allegedly "outrageous
                        accusation" in its original context. And I could hardly "retract"
                        words that were clearly taken out of their initial context.

                        > I resumed the debate in private with him, and showed him clearly
                        > that I was *not* an antinomian, and that I well knew the arguments
                        > of the Theonomists/Christian Reconstructionists from the (fewer)
                        > books that I had read by Bahnsen, North, Rushdoony, and on the
                        > Chalcedon Foundation websites and many other websites. I showed him
                        > that I was a Christian at least as truly as he was, and that I
                        > loved the law of God. But Colin completely refused all my attempts
                        > at freindly reconsiliation.

                        Again, this is false. I never "refused" any "attempts at friendly
                        reconcilliation". In fact, it was Simon who insisted on stopping all
                        private communication with me. His exact words were: "I will not
                        waste my time any more. So, I will not be continuing this
                        discussion with you". And that was the last thing he ever said to me.

                        But just prior to all that, one of the things I had previously said
                        to him was:

                        "We are probably not as far as apart as you might think."

                        I also said to him:

                        "And BTW I never said that to disagree with North and Rushdoony makes
                        you "ungodly" or "wicked"."

                        I also referred to him as a "present day Calvinist".

                        And I further told him last year before he abruptly ended our private
                        correspondence:

                        "I accept your hand of genuine Christian Fellowship."

                        Now does that sound like I had "refused all attempts at friendly
                        reconciliation."??

                        > NEVER have I treated Colin as badly and shamefully as he has
                        > treated me.

                        Well I never chose to cut off communication with Simon, but I did
                        respect his decision to cut off all communication with me.

                        >
                        > I sincerely believe that it will not be well with his soul unless
                        > he 'takes back' what he has said against me.

                        Well it would also be better for Simon to read and cite my words in
                        their original context before insisting that I should "take them
                        back". I do not take back words that are taken out of their original
                        context. That would be foolish.

                        > And I would not be surprised that he likewise 'character-
                        > assassinates' other Christians for opposing Theonomy/Christian
                        > Reconstructionism.

                        I have witnessed more "character assassinations" made against
                        Theonomists than I have the heart to recall. Just recently on another
                        forum, a would be critic of Theonomy insisted on accusing all
                        Theonomists of being "unregenerate" and "Phariseeical" and similar to
                        the "Arian cult". Thankfully, the non-Theonomic Moderator rebuked
                        that person and demanded that she never speak on the topic again.

                        But I would have no reason to "character assassinate" anyone merely
                        for "opposing Theonomy". Though I do admit that at times, some of my
                        responses have been ad hominem after being overly provoked by a less
                        than fair critic of Theonomy. But 'character assassinations" as such
                        is not my method. Simon doesn't seem to be aware that his own
                        comments could be classified as a "character assassination" against
                        me.

                        > Maybe Colin the Theonomist, if he ever had power over me for
                        > opposing his preferred form of governing
                        > such "slanderous," "wicked," "ungodly" men as myself, would seek to
                        > have me stoned to death! I can only conclude that he fully believes
                        > I am a heretic, and in the Theonomic system, heretics bust be
                        > punished with death.

                        It was these kind of absurd remarks that made me first think that
                        Simon was playing some kind of April Fool's joke on the forum.

                        I have never desired that Simon "be stoned to death". Nor do I
                        believe that he is a "heretic". Nor do I believe that heretics should
                        be stoned or "punished with death". Neither does the Theonomic system
                        ever teach that "heretics be punished with death". (If Simon has read
                        Rushdoony's Institutes like he claims, then he would have known that).
                        Infact, I don't know of any modern Theonomic book that teaches that
                        heretics be punished with death. So I have no idea where Simon could
                        have got that notion from.

                        Perhaps he should be more concerned about the Steelite Covenanters
                        who do infact believe that heretics should be punished by the civil
                        magistrate. (I don't mean that he should be concerned about his own
                        life of course, but that he should be concerned about what the
                        Steelites really believe about punishing heretics).

                        > On the more recent matter of disagreement, "The Bishop's Doom"
                        > responded to me, seeking to clarify my response to Colin. Actually
                        > I have not really begun to respond to Colin, but so far I am merely
                        > trying to get him to respond to me as though I were a Christian
                        > brother. He is refusing to do so.

                        Well Simon is greatly mistaken if he thinks that I don't consider him
                        a "Christian brother". My personal e-mails from last year should have
                        prevented him from making that mistake.

                        Simon is also mistaken that I am "refusing" to respond to him. I've
                        actually been quite busy, as well as dealing with matters on other
                        forums (and I am currently a Moderator of two Discussion Forum, and I
                        have been asked to be a Moderator of a third one).

                        > BD has thought that maybe in my annoyance with Colin, I was also
                        > opposing him (BD). BD emailed me in private about this, and I
                        > responded in private.

                        Simon, I have not had the time to interact with your previous post or
                        with BD's post. But I will respond eventually to your earlier posts.
                        I assure you that my lack of response has nothing to do with our
                        previous disagreements, or with what you erroneously think is my
                        negative attitude towards you. I still stand by my last words to you
                        from last year:

                        "I accept your hand of genuine Christian Fellowship."

                        <Snip>

                        Colin
                      • gmw
                        ... Can t miss a chance to take a shot at Covenanters. Look, in all the time you ve been in this group, it seems to me you ve spent far more time and effort
                        Message 11 of 16 , Apr 6, 2004
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                          --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Colin "
                          <cbx292000@y...> wrote:

                          > I certainly do not do what some Steelites Covenanters do, who call
                          > all non-Steelite Presbyterians "backsliders" and "covenant breakers"
                          > (never mind what they call all hymn singers!). My point here is that
                          > I am far more charitable towards non-Theonomists than some Steelites
                          > are to non-Steelites (there are some exceptions of course).

                          Can't miss a chance to take a shot at Covenanters. Look, in all the
                          time you've been in this group, it seems to me you've spent far more
                          time and effort disagreeing with the things said here then agreeing.
                          Every story needs an antagonist, I realize. But perhaps your role
                          here has been played out.

                          Don't take this as me picking on you because you're the theonomist....
                          I would have read your post without any comment had I not come across
                          this shot taken at those who strive to uphold the principles of the
                          Covenanted Reformation. This is the Covenanted Reformation Club, mind
                          you.

                          gmw.
                        • Colin
                          ... Gerry, if you read my words carefully, you would note that I qualified them by saying some . And in case anyone would miss that, I even added there are
                          Message 12 of 16 , Apr 6, 2004
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                            --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "gmw"
                            <raging.calvinist@v...> wrote:
                            > --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Colin "
                            > <cbx292000@y...> wrote:
                            >
                            > > I certainly do not do what some Steelites Covenanters do, who
                            > > call all non-Steelite Presbyterians "backsliders" and "covenant
                            > > breakers" (never mind what they call all hymn singers!). My point
                            > > here is that I am far more charitable towards non-Theonomists
                            > > than some Steelites are to non-Steelites (there are some
                            > > exceptions of course).
                            >
                            > Can't miss a chance to take a shot at Covenanters.

                            Gerry, if you read my words carefully, you would note that I
                            qualified them by saying "some". And in case anyone would miss that,
                            I even added "there are some exceptions of course").

                            I was not criticizing the entire Covenanters, or even all the
                            Steelite ones.

                            > Look, in all the time you've been in this group, it seems to me
                            > you've spent far more time and effort disagreeing with the things
                            > said here then agreeing.

                            I've never been good as acting as a mere "Yes man". I'm sorry that
                            you think that I make a poor candidate for the Steelite
                            Covenanter "cheerleading squad".

                            But I have in the past expressed my agreements with the Scottish
                            Covenanters (though admittedly far less so with the modern Steelite
                            edition).

                            Agreements such as 5 point Calvinism, The Free Offer of the Gospel,
                            the pedagogic value of puritan and presbyterian church history,
                            Postmillennialism, the pedagogic value of creeds and confessions, the
                            pro-nomian views of the law of God between Covenanters and
                            Theonomists. The belief in the universal kingship of Christ (as ably
                            expressed in William Symington's "Messiah the Prince" and similar
                            covenanter writings). The militant protestant stand against Romanism
                            and idolatry in the Church. The appreciation for the Protestant
                            Reformers like Calvin and Knox, as well as for the Protestant Martyrs
                            of England and Scotland. The opposition to political tyranny and
                            pluralism in government (e.g. "Lex Rex"), etc.

                            >
                            > Don't take this as me picking on you because you're the
                            > theonomist....
                            > I would have read your post without any comment had I not come
                            > across this shot taken at those who strive to uphold the principles
                            > of the Covenanted Reformation.

                            My "shot" Gerry, was not intended as a shot at the Steelites at all,
                            but only to point out to Simon that his concerns about Theonomy were
                            entirely unjustified. And if he is really concerned about the matter
                            of state punishment of heretics (that he wrongly imputes to
                            Theonomists), he ought to more concerned about a group of Christians
                            who actually believe in that (such as the Steelite Covenanters). But
                            Simon appears oblivious to the real irony of where he actually
                            expressed his concerns about State punishment of heretics, that is,
                            on this very forum which holds to that view.

                            So I was really taking more of a "shot" at Simon's paranoia, than at
                            the Steelites. I am sorry that you took it the wrong way, Gerry.

                            > This is the Covenanted Reformation Club, mind you.
                            >

                            Yes, and I have learned much from many of your posts, and from BD's
                            posts, and I appreciate your zeal for reformed Church history.

                            Colin
                          • gmw
                            ... wrote: I m sorry that you think that I make a poor candidate for the Steelite Covenanter cheerleading squad . We got spirit, yes we do,
                            Message 13 of 16 , Apr 6, 2004
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                              --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Colin "
                              <cbx292000@y...> wrote:

                              "I'm sorry that you think that I make a poor candidate for the
                              Steelite Covenanter "cheerleading squad".

                              We got spirit, yes we do, we got spirit....

                              How 'bout you?

                              gmw.
                            • thebishopsdoom
                              It is true that some of the modern debates on the issue of Reformed Presbyterians have gotten quite polemical, not just in favour of, but also against the
                              Message 14 of 16 , Apr 6, 2004
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                                It is true that some of the modern debates on the issue of Reformed
                                Presbyterians have gotten quite polemical, not just in favour of, but
                                also against the views of the Reformed Presbyterians.
                                Perhaps it's time to take a closer look at David Steele, since so
                                much of the modern controversy seems to revolve around appeals to
                                him. It seems much ado has been made about Steele for a whole lot of
                                nasty things.
                                Despite popular opinion, Steele was not absolutely loathed by the
                                RPCNA in his day as a minister among them. J.R. Willson had
                                handpicked him for a professorship at RPTS (while the controversy
                                with Synod was ongoing in which Steele had taken a part), and had
                                promised Steele that he already had the votes to get him in as co-
                                professor. Steele declined, because he felt he was not adequately
                                prepared for a professorship at that time. (This is incidentally
                                notably absent from the book on RPTS history, Spare No Exertions.) He
                                was during that time also called to be minister in one of the
                                congregations in the Pittsburgh area, though he had declined the call
                                at that time. Yes, Steele for his leaving synod did accrue some
                                strong opponents in the RPCNA. But the view some of them had of him
                                was not universal.
                                Despite some polemical language used of a few ministers who he
                                believed weree engineering what became the New Light split, and a few
                                others afterwards who he believed were attempting to bring the Old
                                Lights down the same road - talk of former brethren, false brethren,
                                and the like, David Steele did not as a rule speak of people in that
                                way, either within nor without the RPCNA. Even "false brethren"
                                didn't mean "false Christian" (as some appear to have assumed) but
                                rather the falsity was with claiming to be fellow covenanters when
                                the persons in question were attacking the views expressed in the
                                standrads themselves. In particular, it might be noted that Steele
                                late in life mentioned that he never ceased all the while to regard
                                Willson Sr as a godly man upon whom he had no known quarrels (in
                                spite of the fact that Willson did not feel compelled to leave when
                                Steele, Lusk, and several ruling elders determined just cause to
                                dissent from synod). In some of the issues of the magazines edited by
                                Steele, it mentions some of his travels, both preaching and
                                vacations. In there you find that Steele was granted by various RPCNA
                                ministers the allowance to use their buildings to preach a sermon
                                while in the area. The UPC allowed members to attend Mr. Steele's
                                preaching. Steele preached to vacant congregations of the RPCS and
                                RPCI in Ireland and Scotland by request of the people, and in one
                                case was asked to consider a call to be their pastor. In this, he
                                declined, stating that he would have to join with the RPCI to do so,
                                and he could not in good conscience join them in the present
                                constitutional state that they were in. No talk of "you wicked
                                covenant breaking apostates," no talk of "come with me and flee
                                babylon" or anything like that. He did not encourage people to leave
                                their churches if unconvinced with the covenanter side of the church
                                splits, though he encouraged people to consider the issues, and
                                inform themselves of why the churches had so broken up. If they were
                                convinced, and wished to transfer themselves under care of their
                                presbytery (or later, general meeting), they were free to do so. If
                                they did not fully understand the issues, but did enough to desire to
                                transfer over to the reformed presbytery with a willingness to be
                                instructed, he would not turn them back, though they were not made
                                communicants without attaining some knowledge of the reason for the
                                church's existence as a separate branch of the presbyterian church.
                                It seems from my knowledge of him that if any were to ask about what
                                problem Steele had with their church, he would certainly oblige to
                                explain as best he could the causes of splits in the church and why
                                they existed as a distinct church and did not agree to the routes
                                taken in the other splits, believing them to have introduced error
                                into the churches and broken off from the root. Undoubtedly if they
                                did not agree or were unsure, he would have encouraged the inquisitor
                                to continue considering these things as they progressed in their
                                understanding of the faith. This is at least the picture of David
                                Steele that I have gotten from the materials I have read with
                                firsthand accounts. It also agrees with the fact that the Associate
                                Presbyterian magazine actually published one of his articles that
                                addressed an in-house issue going on at the time among the Associate
                                Presbyterians, giving his take on the controversy. I don't see they
                                would have done that if he was supposedly so universally viewed as a
                                theological or ecclesiastical monster.
                                In one of the articles concerning Steele's travels, in one of the
                                covenanter magazines, he mentions a man coming up to him after
                                sermon. Steele recognized him as a former congressman who was an old
                                neighbor of his. He mentions the person as having been a member of
                                the Methodist church, and also states (Steele was authoring the
                                article) about the man being a friend of his and old neighbor whom he
                                hadn't seen in a long time. Steele gladly obliged his friend's
                                request to lodge at his home for some time. This at the least shows
                                that Steele was able to do what most people can do, hold friendships
                                with those he disagrees with. Something I think some people in the
                                way they paint Steele can not conceive of.
                                David Steele also took to task elder J.J. Peoples of the reformed
                                Presbytery for vitriolic language in expressing his views on
                                political dissent.

                                I will conclude by merely quoting a bio of Steele from a secular book:

                                The REVEREND DAVID STEELE was ordained and installed as the third
                                pastor of the Brush Creek Presbyterian Community Church of Adams
                                County, Ohio on June 24, 1831. Brush Creek is an historic
                                congregation due to church disputes over dogma.
                                Dr. Steele was among the early settlers of Adams County, Ohio.
                                Several members of his family followed him west from Pennsylvania. He
                                was born in Londonderry, Ireland, November 2, 1803 of scotch-Irish
                                ancestry. He was the the youngest of six brothers, whose father,
                                David Steele, was the fourth generation from Captain John Steele of
                                Lismahago, near Glascow, Scotland who fought on the side of the
                                Covenanters in the battle of Drumclog, June 22, 1679. He was trained
                                up according to the strict order of observance in Covenanting
                                families. When he was about 20 years old he emigrated to the United
                                States, arriving in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, June 7, 1824, where
                                he stayed with an uncle and pursued his classical studies. Later on
                                he taught in Edinburg Academy in Pennsylvania.
                                In 1826 he was graduated from Western University of Pennsylvania and
                                after studying theology with the late Dr. John Black of Pittsburg,
                                Pennsylvania, he was licensed to preach the Gospel in April 1830. The
                                following year he married Miss Eliza Johnson of Chillicothe, Ohio and
                                one month afterward was ordained and installed as pastor of the
                                Reformed Congregation of Brush Creek by the Ohio Presbytery at a
                                salary of $400 a year.
                                Brush Creek was then a wilderness and he and his wife found
                                everything primitive and uncongenial to educated and refined living.
                                Thousands of miles he travelled on horse-back yearly, having often to
                                ford rivers when he had to get up on his knees in the saddle to keep
                                from being saturated with water as there were few bridges in those
                                days. For 29 years he labored in this congregation upon a salary
                                hardly sufficient to procure the necessities of life. He also took
                                care of several other community churches - one being Mill Creek,
                                Kentucky.
                                Although a little below medium in stature, he possessed an excellent
                                constitution which enabled him to bare up under difficulties which
                                would have been too great for others.
                                As a scholar Dr. Steele was far above most of his compeers,
                                particularly in the ancient classics as he could read the most
                                difficult Latin and Greek at sight. His "Notes on the Apocalypse"
                                show he was a master of Bible truth. He trained quite a number of
                                young men for the Gospel ministry; and his home was the resort of all
                                educated people who came to the neighborhood, and hospitality was a
                                marked feature of his house.
                                It is but proper to state that his wife cooperated heartily with him
                                in all his plans for the elevation and culture of all who dwelt in
                                the vicinity of Brush Creek. Brush Creek owes much to him as a leader
                                in morality and culture.
                                As an orator the Reverend David Steele was concise, clear and
                                frequently eloquent and impassioned and his discrimination in the use
                                of words showed his mastery of the English language. He received the
                                Doctor of Divinity degree from his Alma Mater a few years before his
                                death.
                                After leaving Ohio he spent several years near Sparta, Illinois,
                                retiring to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he died in the 54th
                                year of his ministry at the age of eighty-four. His remains lie in
                                the Petersburg Cemetery in Huntington, Pennsylvania.
                                -Taken from A History of Adams County, Ohio by Evans and Stivers

                                -thebishopsdoom
                              • s.padbury@tiscali.co.uk
                                I accept your hand of genuine Christian Fellowship. Thankyou Colin, but I guess I either forgt about that part, or else I didn t think it was worth anything
                                Message 15 of 16 , Apr 8, 2004
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                                  "I accept your hand of genuine Christian Fellowship."

                                  Thankyou Colin, but I guess I either forgt about that part, or else I didn't
                                  think it was worth anything since you refuse to retract your repeated references
                                  to me as wicked and ungodly and slanderous.

                                  You say we might not be so far apart as I might think. That may be true
                                  in some of the outcomes, but we arrive at them by distinctly different routes.
                                  But at least you're backing off from suggesting that I am somewhat an antinomian
                                  or a dispensationalist now.

                                  As for raking through past posts and engading you in these matters again,
                                  I can't be bothered, sorry. I've had enough of debating with (some!) Theonomists,
                                  because of their abusive language.

                                  But I do admit that you are not as bad as some in that respect, and I appreciate
                                  that.

                                  Simon.

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                                  Broadband from an unbeatable £15.99!

                                  http://www.tiscali.co.uk/products/broadband/home.html?code=SM-NL-11AM
                                • gmw
                                  ... There is nothing new under the sun. It is sinful man s nature to say sinful things towards those with whom we disagree. Thanks for this informative post.
                                  Message 16 of 16 , Apr 9, 2004
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                                    --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, thebishopsdoom
                                    <no_reply@y...> wrote:

                                    > It is true that some of the modern debates on the issue of Reformed
                                    > Presbyterians have gotten quite polemical, not just in favour of,
                                    > but also against the views of the Reformed Presbyterians.

                                    There is nothing new under the sun. It is sinful man's nature to say
                                    sinful things towards those with whom we disagree. Thanks for this
                                    informative post.

                                    I'm not sure if this has anything to do with the present topic or
                                    not, but the following are objections and answers taken from A Short
                                    Vindication of Our Covenanted Reformation, published by a commitee of
                                    the Reformed Presbytery, Philadelphia, 1879 (the objections sound
                                    familiar, and the answers are refreshing):

                                    ---
                                    1. "You think nobody right but yourselves." Just so; that is, in the
                                    points wherein others differ from us; otherwise we will only proclaim
                                    our own hypocrisy. We believe, and therefore speak.

                                    2. "You think nobody will be saved but such as adopt your peculiar
                                    principles." This is an old objection. It was "cast in the teeth" of
                                    one of our martyred ministers, Mr. Donald Cargil, as he was "led as a
                                    lamb to the slaughter." He meekly answered, "No." "Well, and what
                                    more would you want than to be saved?" "I want a great deal more,"
                                    was his simple reply, "I want Christ glorified on earth." He
                                    understood the first question of the Shorter Catechism, of which too
                                    many are ignorant to-day. "Man's chief end is neither his salvation
                                    nor destruction." Rev. 4:11.

                                    3. "Your principles are impracticable." If they are scriptural the
                                    objection is true in one sense, but false in another. Our Saviour
                                    told his real disciples—"Without me (separated from me) ye can do
                                    nothing." Jno. 15:5. This was Paul's experience (Rom. 7:18), and he
                                    tells us that this is part of all believers' experience. Gal. 5:17.
                                    On the other hand, if our distinctive principles are scriptural, as
                                    we believe them to be, they are certainly practicable to a true
                                    believer; for of such no impossibilities are required. 2 Cor. 12:9;
                                    Phil. 4:13.

                                    4. "You meddle with political matters;—preach the gospel and let
                                    civil government alone." We often meet this objection under the form
                                    of friendly advice; and we believe none is of deeper significance or
                                    more pregnant with consequences. (a) It confounds politics and civil
                                    government. (b) It separates between the gospel and civil government.
                                    (c) It excludes the Bible and its Author from the commonwealth. (d)
                                    It conducts us to infidelity and issues in blank atheism. But this
                                    objection involving, as it does, so much both of principle and
                                    practice, demands more consideration and a particular and
                                    intelligible answer. It is not true that we meddle with politics; for
                                    a Covenanter can affiliate with no existing political party because
                                    no party will consent to be governed by the Bible. The gospel, as we
                                    understand it, covers the whole of the Scriptures. Gen. 18:18, Gal.
                                    3:8, Heb. 4:2. It is "another gospel" which excludes any part of the
                                    Bible. That we may be more fully understood, we assert that the Holy
                                    Scriptures are the only infallible rule to direct mankind in
                                    individual and social life: that all the lawful relations of this
                                    life are instituted, defined and limited in the Bible. We find in the
                                    Sacred Oracles that God has organized society in three, and only
                                    three departments, both for its conservation and reformation. These
                                    are the family, the church, and the state, the two latter being
                                    auxiliaries of the first—the church and civil commonwealth to be
                                    helpful to the family. The plain lesson of history and experience is,
                                    that insubordination in the family generates contumacy in the church,
                                    and issues in insurrection and rebellion in the state. If there be
                                    no "church in the house," there will be no godliness in the church,
                                    nor honesty without godliness in the state. To effect a real
                                    reformation then, these three divine ordinances are the proper
                                    instrumentalities to be employed—and no other. These have the promise
                                    of their Author to render them effectual. Prov. 22:6; 1 Tim. 4:16;
                                    Josh. 1:8. Of course, we cannot co-operate in the voluntary and
                                    irresponsible confederacies of our time, having but one condition of
                                    fellowship, and demanding a pledge of fidelity. To ask or give such
                                    pledge involves an insult offered to our Master, to whom alone our
                                    pledge has been previously given, that we will be governed by that
                                    law in His hand, which commands every duty and forbids every sin in
                                    all our relations. According to our interpretation of the gospel,
                                    therefore, we must have scriptural and definite views of the divine
                                    ordinance of civil government, while we do not "meddle with politics"—
                                    earth's party politics, which disregard the Lord, His Anointed and
                                    His word.

                                    5. "You will admit none to your communion but those who adopt your
                                    peculiar principles: and does it not follow that you account none to
                                    be Christians but yourselves? All others, by your close communion,
                                    you would shut out of heaven." We have given this objection in
                                    greater fulness than the preceding ones, because of the frequency and
                                    plausibility of its utterance by the generality of professors. Well,
                                    we readily admit the truth of the first part of the objection: but in
                                    the practice of restricted fellowship we are not peculiar, and we
                                    think consistency, common sense and honesty, justify this part of
                                    Christian practice. Nor does this practise involve a denial of the
                                    Christianity or meetness for heaven of any others. This part of the
                                    objection denies, or at least confounds the necessary distinction
                                    between the visible and invisible state of the church—an error which
                                    is logically followed by many others. Consistently with our
                                    distinctive principles and practice, which alone exemplify true
                                    charity, as we sincerely believe, we doubt not many are now in heaven
                                    and also on earth, partakers of the "common salvation," who never
                                    heard of Covenanters. And, moreover, Covenanters have always, in
                                    private intercourse, been ready to embrace in their heart's
                                    affections, all who in their judgment love God in Christ. This they
                                    do on the principle that "every one that loveth Him that begat loveth
                                    Him also that is begotten of Him." 1 Jno 5:1. But this private and
                                    occasional intercourse the Scriptures distinguish from public,
                                    ecclesiastical fellowship; and Covenanters endeavor to act according
                                    to that supreme rule. They cannot, therefore, at the same time,
                                    consistently testify against the errors and sins of parties, and
                                    appear under an official or judicial banner as one with them. "If any
                                    man see thee which hast knowledge sit at meat in the idol's temple,
                                    shall not the conscience of him which is weak be emboldened to eat
                                    those things which are offered to idols?" 1 Cor. 8:10.—Not that we
                                    charge all others with idolatry: but there is a rule in Logic which
                                    the learned acknowledge to be correct, Majus et minus non variant
                                    speciem,—"greater or less does not vary the nature of a thing." And
                                    we are enjoined to "mark them which cause divisions and offences
                                    contrary to the doctrine which you have learned; and avoid them, Rom.
                                    16:17: as also to "withdraw ourselves from every brother that walketh
                                    disorderly"—yes, though a brother. 2 Thes. 3:6; 1 Tim. 3:5. No, no,
                                    we are not uncharitable. While hating Pharisaic exclusiveness, we no
                                    less dislike the spurious charity that "suffers sin upon a brother"
                                    without rebuke. Lev. 19:17; Tit. 1:13.

                                    ---
                                    gmw.
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