Interaction with Dr. Kenneth Talbot on Refuting the Heresy of Hyperpreterism | The Kingdom Come

What follows is an interaction with Dr. Kenneth Talbot, president of Whitefield Theological Seminary concerning methods of refuting the heresy of hyperpreterism.  This interaction originally began on a website called Theology Explained.  Actually, it was never supposed to be an interaction, but merely a “position paper” stating my position.  Dr. Talbot responded to it in “debate” fashion which is apparently against the rules since the site administrator closed down the thread and stated the site is not a debate site.  The problem is, whether the administrator closed the thread after my response or Dr. Talbot’s response — it would be unfair to either.  So, instead of playing that game, I have moved the entire interaction to MY OWN site where I can allow the interaction to continue as long as it will.  I won’t close down comments AFTER they have begun.

As my site does NOT require a person to sign up to post comments, Dr. Talbot is welcome to continue his interaction.  Either way, I will be forcefully responding to the many false charges Dr. Talbot has put forth.

NOTE: The links to the site TheologyExplained where this debate originally occurred are now broken as that site administrator apparently deleted the debate to protect Dr. Talbot from himself.

ORIGINAL ARTICLE

The Reformed Response to Heresy

The accusation against Reformed apologetics concerning heresy is that the Reformed must be hypocritical when they point to some belief as being heretical. The accusation stems from the fact that the Reformed had to break away from what at the time was considered “The Church” — Roman Catholicism. Thus, any time a Reformed person or group calls another person or group, “heretical”, the claim is that the Reformed are forgetting or ignoring their own beginnings as a supposed “heretical” group.

Perhaps at this point, it is important to define what is meant by “heresy”. Heresy is not merely something we don’t like, or something out of line with our denominational stance, or even something that appears to go against the accepted teaching. Heresy according to the Bible is best defined in Romans 16:17-18 wherein we read:

Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple. (NKJV)

Notice that the division/schism and offenses are caused when a person comes teaching contrary doctrine. So, the issue would be what is meant by “contrary to the doctrine which you learned”?

Was the doctrine that the Reformers taught “contrary”? It was certainly contrary to much of Roman Catholic doctrine but was it contrary to the totality of Christian doctrine, as was “learned” from the very beginning? You see, a very important element to any discussion about heresy is first a discussion of God’s sovereignty. Has God guided His followers, as a group to understand, believe, and teach the basics with accuracy? Or has God been either unable or unwilling to maintain the most basic truth within His community? If God has been unable or unwilling to maintain the most basic truth within the community of saints, then we are prone to fall into all manner of heresy…and never even realize it.

However, if we believe God has maintained basic truth — sending Christ, the hand-picked apostles, and the Holy Spirit to effectively teach and guide, then our next question would be, what are those basics? It is here where we begin to see the importance of knowing and understanding how the Church throughout its history has interpreted texts. We are NOT simply saying the majority interpretation is the correct interpretation, as majorities often change.

When Martin Luther and the other Reformers appealed to Scripture, they ALSO appealed to the fact that the bulk of Christian interpretation was on their side. Yes, they did point out that popes and councils had contradicted one another throughout history, but the Reformers did not mean to imply that we should then chuck all of historic Christian interpretation and start over. Rather, the Reformers appealed to the fact that they were actually upholding the continuity of historic Christian interpretation where Roman Catholicism had abandoned it. This is the reason the Reformers could immediately pen confessions showing their agreement with Scripture AND the continuity of historic Christian interpretation.

This brings us to the title of this article — The Reformed Response to Heresy. When Reformed declare something heresy, they must be careful, as all Christians should. Heresies have been and continue to be born sometimes out of nothing but the “Bible alone” — that is, some heresies have appealed to nothing else but the Bible. This doesn’t mean we stop using exegesis to refute heresies, but that we keep in mind, most heresies are first and foremost, propositional errors. They propose something completely out of sync with historic Christian interpretation whether using the Bible to support it or not. Thus, our first question to determine if something is a heresy or not is, does it have the support of historic Christian interpretation or it is something completely foreign to all of historic Christian interpretation?

The Reformed Response to heresy should be one fought first on the propositional level and then on the exegetical level. Parsing individual Scripture texts with someone who is proposing something that is outside any historic Christian interpretation is actually counter to the Reformed concept of God’s sovereignty. To give legitimacy, by interacting solely exegetically to a proposition outside of all historic Christian interpretation, implies that God has NOT maintained the most basic truth within the community of saints and that at any moment some person may come up with some unknown or overlooked doctrine not clearly taught by Jesus, the hand-picked apostles, or the Holy Spirit.

In conclusion, while we as Reformed Christians may want to immediately take up the sword and shield of exegesis, let us not forget that all claims are first and foremost propositional/presuppositional before they are evidential/exegetical. If we forget this, we will spend countless hours unwittingly giving legitimacy to a heretical proposition just so that it may pretend to “exegete” some text when in actuality it would merely be applying a private and discontinuity interpretation to the text.

DR. TALBOT’S FIRST RESPONSE:

Roderick:

What do you mean when you say we must begin with “propositions?” Which propositions? Exegetical, historical, theological? Your statement makes no sense on this. All statements are propositional. You can choose any category you would like and once you put pen to paper (words to speech, or typing on a computer) you are doing propositions. How you are using the term is meaningless in this context because every argument is propositional. So could you please (1) define what you mean by proposition? (2) Explain how you are using it in this context? (3) What Reformer made such an argument. I am getting ready to post a rather long article on Calvin’s theological method that deals with his doctrine of Scripture as it relates to its epistemological quest as first principles in theology or apologetics. I will be showing that Calvin, the Westminster Divines, Clark, Van Til, Bahnsen, Frame, etc, held to the same first principles, as did all who follow Calvin. They differed only after establishing their axiom. The difference relates to the philosophical question of “what” verse “that.”

I thank you for you clarification in advance.

Dr. Kenneth Talbot

 

RODERICK’S REPLY

Thank you Dr. Talbot for asking the questions. Yes, you are correct — ALL STATEMENTS ARE PROPOSITIONAL — that is exactly the point and why I like to deal first and foremost with the proposition of an argument BEFORE I get into the so-called “evidence/exegesis”. The overarching proposition of historic Christianity is that God is sovereign, in complete control. God has planned and decreed things, not just let them haphazardly unfold for anyone to take up. This is the proposition of almost every Reformer. Do I need to name and cite?

Heretics on the other hand, whether they admit it or not, MUST start with a God who is not sovereign. A God who has not maintained basic truth among the community of saints. Where at any moment a person like Muhammad, Joseph Smith jr., Charles Taze Russell, L. Ron Hubbard, or Max King and such can come along and claim they read the Bible and determined some “new” teaching, which at later time they begin to add “implied” doctrines and perhaps even personally revealed doctrines from whatever source.

Historic Christianity is a community that advocates that it has been guided by the initial teachings of Christ Jesus, the teachings of His hand-picked, inspired apostles, the abiding guidance of the Holy Spirit, all in unity, all sourcing Scripture as the definitive line., yet seeing a God who holds this all together.

Thank you for asking for clarification.

 

DR. TALBOT’S SECOND RESPONSE

Roderick:

Thank for attempting to answer the question. But you have only added to the confusion.

Roderick stated:You are correct – all statements are propositional – that is exactly the point and why I like to deal first and foremost with the proposition of an argument before I get into the so-called “evidence/exegesis.”

Dr. Talbot Response: What do you mean by “I like to deal first and foremost with the proposition of an argument.” What method does that invoke? Why would not that method include the “exegesis” which is also propositional, and if, it is a part of the argument of your opponent, your previous statement would require you to do what you say you would prefer not to do? This is irrational because you cannot actually avoid the necessary logical implications. Further, why is the propositions of Scripture considered secondary rather than primary? That is a Roman Catholic type argument. How do you prioritize these propositions? I will accept categories, but definitive explanations of how such an arbitrary choice is made is expected. I chose the the “propositions” of the Bible because God says that I must believe His Word. Why do you choose other non-biblical propositions?

Roderick states: “The overarching proposition of historic Christianity is that God is sovereign, in complete control. God has planned and decreed things, not just let them haphazardly unfold for anyone to take up. This is the proposition of almost every Reformer. Do I need to name and cite?”

Dr. Talbot response: Yes give me names and citations, but not from wiki please. Just remember, I am about to post a very larger paper on the Doctrine of Scripture which explicates Calvin’s view, with multiple Calvinian scholars who support my interpretation (Reformed, Evangelical, and even some Liberal. Yes, some liberals are still interested in Calvin’s teachings, but on this principle they are all agreed), so before you quote something, be sure it is contextually true or it might result in an public embarrassment for you. And just so you know – listen carefully – this proposition “the sovereignty of God” is not the first principle for the sourcing of Calvin’s theological method, nor Clark, Van Til, Frame, Bahnsen, Gentry, not to mention the Puritans. I do not doubt that they say God is sovereign, but they say it because they have derived that truth from the Bible, by exegetical and hermeneutical interpretation. It is a proposition and a very good one because the Bible say it is, but you have been saying that it is the first principle of Reformed theology and I believe you are absolutely wrong! Not every proposition is necessarily true. Some could be false. What is the standard by which you would judge such a proposition “God is Sovereign?” The Mohammedans believe that their God is sovereign. Now here are two “truth claims,” both are logically consistent arguments (they have to be because they are too minimal to be otherwise). The Mohammedans say “Ali (god) is Sovereign. He is completely in control of an orderly universe.” The Christian says “Jehovah (God) is Sovereign. He is completely in control of an orderly universe.” Elucidate for me how your ‘overarching’ proposition can discern the difference between these two propositions? Now remember, your proposition is “God is sovereign.” That is the underlying principium of your theological method which you argue as being the first principles for ‘historic and Reformed Christianity.’ That statement alone is a logical fallacy sense it is universal in nature and would require that everyone hold to this “God is sovereign” first principle. Further, I know Reformers who following the “classical line of apologetics” who would absolutely disagree with you. So both statements are going to be false, because I only have to find “1” who says other wise and you have been proven to have made a false claim.

Roderick states: “Heretics on the other hand, whether they admit it or not, MUST start with a God who is not sovereign. A God who has not maintained basic truth among the community of saints.”

Dr. Talbot states: Roderick, you have only stated that “God is sovereign,” you have not defined what “sovereignty means. Arminians believe in the sovereignty of God, but their definition and my differ. Why is my definition better than theirs? Why is your definition, which you have not given, better than theirs? Why is your definition of “sovereignty” better than the Mohammedans? What is your “authority?” By what “Authority” do you make such a statement? It is either (1) your authority, or it is (2) God’s authority. Man or God? Which would you have me believe? And if you are wise at all, you will of course say “God’s authority” in order to escape the logical conclusions of the former, thereby claiming that you are more authoritative than God, which also defeats your first principle again, and you thereby demonstrate by violating the law of non-contradiction that your first proposition cannot be true because you can not claim that “God is Sovereign” and “Rod is Sovereign.” If you have on your ‘thinking cap’ you might respond “I didn’t say I was sovereign, just that I am the “authority” for judging “truth claims” according to my “God is sovereign” first principle not derived from the Bible. However, Roderick, does not “authority” imply “sovereignty” and “sovereignty imply authority?” There cannot be two “sovereigns” nor two “authorities.” Such an argument at best would require an “existentialistic” theorem. But then, that creates another dilemma does it not? If two, then why not thousands? Now we are far a field from “one” God who is sovereign. You cannot even tell me who is the “God” of your first principle. Why? Because the Bible says that apart from the God of the Bible revealing himself beyond general revelation, therefore requiring the necessity of “special revelation” that is, the Bible being the source of our knowledge of God and of truth, man perverts the truth of God (innate and rational creational truth) and exchanges it for a lie, and will suppress the truth of God. St. Paul says in Romans 1:18-32:

“For the wrathi of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man — and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things. Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.”

It seems to me that God’s Word does not support your proposition, however you have made it clear that the Bible is only secondary to your system. Nevertheless, if man cannot know who “God” is from General Revelation, but only “that some concept of deity is innate” because man will not retain a knowledge of God, who exchanged the truth of God for a lie, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, then if there is a true knowledge, where did it come from and what is its source and authority? Remember, since you want to deal with propositions first, do not answer this with a biblical answer, for that too would violate your first principle.

Roderick states: “Where at any moment a person like Muhammad, Joseph Smith jr., Charles Taze Russell, L. Ron Hubbard, or Max King and such can come along and claim they read the Bible and determined some “new” teaching, which at later time they begin to add “implied” doctrines and perhaps even personally revealed doctrines from whatever source.”

Dr. Talbot states: Why does this even bother your? You have started your argument with a proposition that is not derived from the Bible either, because you don’t begin with the Bible. Because if you say it is from the Bible, then you started with the Bible and not some independent proposition apart from the Bible. Roderick, saying that “one begins with the Bible” is not the problem. Why do you think they (Hyperprets) make that claim? Because they believe that your “first principle” which is independently yours, has no authority and only sets up “you” to be god. “God said”, beats “Rod said” any day of the week. Why? Because the Bible tells me so! Paul says in Romans 3:4, “Let God be true and every man a liar.” Now that statement from the Bible seems to trump your phantom god of “god is sovereign.” Why, because I said so? No, because God said so. Why do you think they are winning over any converts with their arguments and appeal to the Bible? “Rod” or “God” is not much of a choice. Sorry, I am not trying to be unkind, but that is the truth. You cannot convince a person of the “truth” of God apart from the “Word of God” to which the Holy Spirit testifies. You make this argument later, and in doing so, have reversed your own argument.

Roderic states: “Historic Christianity is a community that advocates that it has been guided by the initial teachings of Christ Jesus, the teachings of His hand-picked, inspired apostles, the abiding guidance of the Holy Spirit, all in unity, all sourcing Scripture as the definitive line., yet seeing a God who holds this all together.”

Dr. Talbot responds: “The teachings of Christ, the apostles, the Holy Spirit, sourcing the Scripture as the definitive line.” Roderick, this violates you first principle. First God Himself spoke, and then using various methods (see Hebrews 1:1), Christ, the apostles, and the church abides by the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Now, stop and think this through. How do you know this? You said the sourcing is the Scripture, the Bible. This statement is MY propositional first principle, not yours. How do you know what Christ taught? Were you there? How do you know what the apostles taught? Were you there? How do you know what the Holy Spirit guided the Church in all these years? Where you there during the past 2000+ years? The answer is of course, no! Rather, you said the Bible tells me so. Now, you have contradicted your self again. What you just said is what almost every Reformed, at least those of the Calvinian linage would say who follows his theology. But they would say over and over again that you can only know that God is sovereign, and that it is true, because God said it in His Word. The authority is “God” saying it in “His Word.” The Word that the Holy Spirit wrote (see 2 Peter 1:21) by the organic means of inspiration. Do you understand that last statement. The Holy Spirit wrote the Bible through holy men! If the Spirit is going to “guide” the Church, do you not think that the Holy Spirit would do it by the “Word” He had holy men write?

Conclusion

Roderick, when the hyperpreterists state that they “start with the Bible” as Dr. Clark use to say, “that is commendable.” However, that means nothing! They come with presuppositional dogma that forces them to skew exegetical studies, twist the Scriptures with “bad” hermeneutics, and then with a boldness that boast on the side of arrogance, they assert that they alone have the “key” to the “truth which unlocks the knowledge of God about the whole Bible which has been misinterpreted and everything needs to be tweaked to get it right.” Such “verbose” proclamations have great Gnostici overtones. On this part you are correct and I agree with you. Of the thousands of theological and exegetical scholars that have lived in 2000+ years, all of them together did not (even with the Holy Spirit leading them) have the “truth.” That is why they have to reject and redefine the Reformed and Orthodox teachings of the historic Christian Church. What is worse, they skew their church history to try to gain advantage. Only to be beaten back again and again. So the next time they say “God said,” do not reply “Rod said,” but rather state, “God did not make any such statement in the Scriptures. Why do you insist on prostituting the Word of God to support your false theological teachings.” Now that is authority! The key is interpreting the Scripture correctly. Roderick, you have correctly stated in the past that “their interpretation of the Bible is wrong.” That, however, requires that you show them what the Scripture teaches. The “Reformed” version of Sola Scriptura is the Bible alone “rightfully interpreted is the Word of God for man.” The wrong interpretation reduces it to “man” mishandling the Word of God, which is exactly what happened in the Garden of Eden. Do you see a pattern here? Yes, you have seen it and have said as much.

Now, I will ask you this question: “Which of the two arguments above are you going to follow?” The first one which begins independent of the Bible and states that “God is sovereign” or the second argument which states that “The Bible says God is Sovereign?” Only one can be your first principle for developing that theological method that will “rightfully and truthfully” give “authority” to everything we argue. There can be only one source of truth, for there to be “two truths,” is a violation of the law of non-contradiction. If “two truths” are “true,” they must posses the exact same qualities of “truth”, no more or no less, wherein it would be rightfully state that there is only “one truth.” However, if there there are “two different truths,” that means that they are in contradiction to each other at lease in areas of disagreement since they cannot be the same and different at the same time.

Roderick states: “Thank you for asking for clarification.”

Roderick, you are welcome and I look forward to your answers. In about two weeks, I will have the article on Calvin’s Doctrine of Scripture completed (I am working over-time, so it might take longer). I worked on them for the last six months for lectures that I gave at a Calvin conference last month. However, I am bring it full circle to show that all “presuppositional” apologists begin where Calvin began, that the Bible is our only source of “true knowledge of God.” I might have the lectures placed on this web site if I can’t get the articles completed on time.

RODERICK’S SECOND RELPY

Hello Dr. Talbot,

I’ll get back with you tomorrow night when I have the full time to devote to this. But Dr. Talbot, I must say, you seem to be a bit miffed and carrying over our discussion on epistemology here. You have already responded with some blatant misrepresentations of what I’ve said. I NEVER said I don’t include consideration of exegesis, but that FIRST and FOREMOST I consider propositions, whether they are true or not. Please be careful to represent what I’m CLEARLY saying. Nor did I EVER say the propositions of Scripture are secondary, however a heretic’s private interpretation of Scripture should not be placed on par with the unified, Christian interpretation of Scripture – agreed?

I hope you know what you are doing, because last time you did this, trying to take me to task in public, you merely gave fodder for the hyperpreterists (is that your goal?) — expect it to make its rounds soon. However, I am more than happy to carry out this interaction as long as you’d like and as long as I am not banned. Thanks

–Roderick

 

DR. TALBOT’S THIRD RESPONSE

Roderick:

I am not miffed about our former discussion. Your tactics are unacceptable to me. You have come here and posted an article that I wanted clarification about and disagree with. You have restated your original thesis about “God is sovereign” here at TE. Roderick, you need to reread my article again, I asked “Further, why is the propositions of Scripture considered secondary rather than primary?” I never stated that you “ignore the Scripture.” You clearly pointed out that you are not beginning with the Scripture, but a proposition. And if your proposition is primary or overarching, then the “second” thing you do is consider exegesis, at least that is what you stated. Is this not what you posted above: “The Reformed Response to heresy should be one fought first on the propositional level and then on the exegetical level.” I did not say that, you did! Worse, you have not stated why one proposition is better than the other. But Roderick, the Bible is the Word of God written is a proposition, is it not? Why is your proposition a better first principle? You ignore the issues and write allegations back.Oh, I see where this is coming from. I will assume that it was because I asked you to be careful not to write what will humiliate you, and perhaps that was too hard of a statement. I will assume you were offended and I apologize for the statement if it did give offense, it was not given to offend, but to caution you. I could have stated it better. Here at TE you are accountable for what you post. However, I will not hold back anything on what I believe is “errant theology.” If you haven’t noticed, we are a “Reformed” theology site for education and resources. You post has issues that are not according to the teaching of Scripture and therefore teaching an errant theology.

Yet, I must ask, “why do you prejudge my intentions?” You state: “I hope you know what you are doing, because last time you did this, trying to take me to task in public, you merely gave fodder for the hyperpreterists (is that your goal?) — expect it to make its rounds soon.” This last statement is not very Christian, now is it? No, I don’t play to the public. I defend the truth, I don’t care who you are, when you are wrong, I am going to expose it. Your tone is unkind and judgmental, but I am not offended, so save the apology, just give me the response. Yet, I must ask, “If you didn’t mean what you wrote, why did you write it?” Further, you stated that “a heretic’s private interpretation of Scripture should not be placed on par with the unified, Christian interpretation of Scripture – agreed?” I think I made that point previously, so let me restate what I said, I think it is self explaining: I wrote: “Roderick, when the hyperpreterists state that they “start with the Bible” as Dr. Clark use to say, “that is commendable.” However, that means nothing! They come with presuppositional dogma that forces them to skew exegetical studies, twist the Scriptures with “bad” hermeneutics, and then with a boldness that boast on the side of arrogance, they assert that they alone have the “key” to the “truth which unlocks the knowledge of God about the whole Bible which has been misinterpreted and everything needs to be tweaked to get it right.” Such “verbose” proclamations have great Gnostic overtones. On this part you are correct and I agree with you. Of the thousands of theological and exegetical scholars that have lived in 2000+ years, all of them together did not (even with the Holy Spirit leading them) have the “truth.” That is why they have to reject and redefine the Reformed and Orthodox teachings of the historic Christian Church. What is worse, they skew their church history to try to gain advantage. Only to be beaten back again and again. So the next time they say “God said,” do not reply “Rod said,” but rather state, “God did not make any such statement in the Scriptures. Why do you insist on prostituting the Word of God to support your false theological teachings.” Now that is authority! The key is interpreting the Scripture correctly.”

I will take your warning to heart “I hope you know what you are doing, because last time you did this, trying to take me to task in public, you merely gave fodder for the hyperpreterists (is that your goal?) — expect it to make its rounds soon.” I am not sure what argument you were reading the last time, but I don’t think that it “only gave fodder” to the Hyperpreterists. You never answered my questions. You broke off the discussion. Roderick, I withdrew from Pretblog to give you all the room you needed. But this is not Pretblog and when you are wrong, I will confront you with the truth. I am no respecter of errant theology. Let me assure you that I know exactly what I am doing. You now have my full attention. My article on the “Resurrection will have to wait.”

 

RODERICK’S THIRD REPLY

Hello Dr. Talbot, readers and lurkers,
Today I spent my day with my family at Turkey Run State Park (see here), and then took my mother-in-law out to dinner for her birthday. I used the time on the hike at the park for meditating on what I would write here. As many may know, this is not Dr. Talbot’s and my first discussion over epistemological issues (see here). This is extremely important for the reader to know, since much of this present discussion is really predicated on that initial interaction. I “broke off that discussion” with Dr. Talbot NOT because I was being “humiliated”, but because mutual friends urged me to, plus I DID give plenty of answers…just not answers Dr. Talbot “accepted”. Further, please don’t insinuate that I am afraid to interact with you here or at PretBlog. I would ask Dr. Talbot to please refrain from these “tactics”, as they are not becoming of someone of his stature. They are more the “tactics” of the very heretics we are discussing.

Before we begin, I’d like Dr. Talbot to consider some things, perhaps personally concede them to himself.

1. Even though he is a seminary president, a subordinate may be able to at times correct him.
2. “Clarkianism”, for whatever devotion Dr. Talbot contributes to it, is NOT the traditional Christian apologetic/epistemology. What Dr. Gordon Clark was advocating was NOT well-received by the bulk of Reformed Christianity. This does NOT however speak to its correctness or error. Only that I would like Dr. Talbot to please stop acting like a person is not Reformed unless they hold to some form of Clarkianism. Thank you.
3. Dr. Talbot, by his own actions has been bolstering the resolve of the heretical group called hyperpreterism. These are not my own observations alone, but observations by the hyperpreterists themselves. Samuel Frost, a student of Dr. Talbot has been advocating hyperpreterism for at least 15 years, often crediting Dr. Talbot’s own seminary for giving him the training that Frost has used to conclude hyperpreterism. In all that time, until this year, Dr. Talbot, to my knowledge has not publicly done anything to discourage and repudiate Frost’s use of his training as an association to heresy. You can read Frost’s recent statements where he believes Dr. Talbot has almost single-handedly given a “major victory” to the hyperpreterist cause (see here & here) due to Dr. Talbot’s epistemology and his blurring the lines between what is and isn’t heretical. Dr. Talbot’s interaction with the hyperpreterist movement is a recent development. I’d urge him to take more time to consider the work of people who have been at this longer than he, despite his seminary training. Sometimes, theoretical experience is not the same as practical experience. Thank you.

Now, I don’t say these things to Dr. Talbot to “humiliate” him, as seems to be his intention toward me. As a matter of fact I love and want to protect his reputation as much as possible, again the reason I broke off the other discussion was at the urging of my and Dr. Talbot’s mutual friends. But I would ask him to seriously consider the 3 points above.

RESPONSE #1 TO DR. TALBOT (responding to content in Dr. Talbot’s comments here)

Dr. T said:

“Thank for attempting to answer the question. But you have only added to the confusion.”

Again, Dr. T, please do not behave like this. I DID answer the question. Any confusion you may be experiencing is regrettable and I hope to remedy that as I continue. But please read what I am saying in comparison to your quotes. Thanks.

Dr. T said:

“What do you mean by “I like to deal first and foremost with the proposition of an argument.” What method does that invoke? Why would not that method include the “exegesis” which is also propositional”

See, Dr. T. I did NOT say what you said above. I did NOT say I would not include “exegesis”. I said I start first with the heretic’s proposition. And whether you admit it or not, you actually agree. In a follow up comment you said, and please allow me to make your words bold here as they are very, very important to this entire discussion:

“They [hyperpreterists] come with presuppositional dogma that forces them to skew exegetical studies, twist the Scriptures with “bad” hermeneutics, and then with a boldness that boast on the side of arrogance, they assert that they alone have the “key” to the “truth which unlocks the knowledge of God about the whole Bible which has been misinterpreted and everything needs to be tweaked to get it right.” — Dr. T.

Amen! I guess this discussion is over since you agree that for all their claims at “exegesis” and “hermeneutics”, the FIRST and FOREMOST problem with hyperpreterism (and all heresies, as I state in my original article here on TE), is that as you say “they come with propositional dogma that forces them to skew”. That is the SAME as me saying they start with a proposition that is antithetical to ALL of historic Christian interpretation. Now can we drop this fake discussion and get to the real one you are itching to take up here? Obviously you have just conceded the main thrust of my original article. Right?

However, so that you will not accuse me of “breaking off” the discussion I shall continue.

Dr. T. says:

“Further, why is the propositions of Scripture considered secondary rather than primary? That is a Roman Catholic type argument. How do you prioritize these propositions?”

Dr. Talbot, you answered your own question quite nicely. When interacting with heresies the primary consideration is that their exegesis/hermeneutic is SKEWED by their false proposition. Therefore, let us first consider their proposition. The proposition of hyperpreterists, whether they will admit to it openly or not is that for whatever reason, God was unable or unwilling to maintain the most basic understanding of His plan within the community of saints. If we do not first address this false proposition (and you can do so from the Bible, I never said we couldn’t or shouldn’t), but if we don’t first address this false proposition, then we would merely chase our tails with the SKEWED “exegesis/hermeneutics” that we would be validating by treating it as if it was on par with acceptable exegesis/hermeneutics. It is the heretic that has “prioritized” our need to address their erroneous proposition, since as you agreed that is what is driving their false interpretations. Are you still confused?

Dr. T says:

“I chose the the “propositions” of the Bible because God says that I must believe His Word. Why do you choose other non-biblical propositions?”

Dr. T, you didn’t choose the propositions in this case, but rather the heretic has chosen them, if you allow his false proposition to stand. Now, you can do one of two things; (1) Let the heretical proposition stand and let the heretic take you on an “exegetical/hermeneutical” wild-goose chase as you pretend that their handling of Scripture is on par with historic Christian interpretation. (2) You can point out that false proposition of the heretic and let them know they cannot engage you with Scripture until they and you first have a discussion as to why their proposition (driving their exegesis) is wrong. I have simply chosen course 2 and yet you want to berate me for it? Of course I can’t discuss the “propositions of the Bible” with a heretic, since as you admit, they SKEW their very interpretation of the Bible. With all their redefinition of terms, false etymologies and complete disregard for context. It is almost as pointless as discussing football with someone who insist on calling it basketball and calling touchdowns, layups. They are operating on a faulty view of the basics.

I want to stop here to give you a chance to respond, since there are actually two different discussions going on. One is about why I (and historic Christianity/the Reformed) respond to heretics by first and foremost addressing their false propositions and the second discussion is specifically an epistemological discussion surrounding your devotion to Clarkianism. Please limit your focus to what I’ve said in this response and we can unpack the rest as we move forward.

Let me conclude with saying I find it commendable that you for stating you “will not hold back anything on what I believe is ‘errant theology.'” My only concern is that you waited so long as Frost “prostituted” (your word) WTS, Clarkianism and his training as being the reason he has embraced the heresy of hyperpreterism. Why did you “hold back” while Frost, your own student has been actively promoting not only “errant theology”, but “damnable heresy”? I do thank you for some of your recent work but again, the hyperpreterists, with Frost at the head actually think you have sold the farm and given them a victory. Please be concerned.

I thank you for clearing your schedule to give me full attention, but please let it not distract from issues you may find more pressing. Bless you and your family Dr. T. Thank you for your dedication and help to obviously the countless Christians that have been under your charge. I ask you, as a brother to step up to the plate on this one and take responsibility for Frost and what he has done under your charge and to make it clear that, hyperpreterist propositions SKEW exegesis/hermeneutics — to the point where discussion of exegesis/hermeneutics with a hyperpreterists is pointless without continuously bringing it back to the FACT of their overarching proposition. Thanks and good night. I will be gone most of the day tomorrow and I expect you will be busy as well. I will not insinuate anything if you do not answer soon. 😉

In Christ and His Church (the united and continuity of the saints)
Roderick

DR. TALBOT’S FOURTH (TWO-PART) RESPONSE

PART ONE OF TWO COMMENTS

Hello Roderick: I don’t think there are any lurkers here. It is 5:30 am. This will be answered in two parts, it is too big to post in just one reply. So please read both.

Roderick states:Today I spent my day with my family at Turkey Run State Park (see here), and then took my mother-in-law out to dinner for her birthday. I used the time on the hike at the park for meditating on what I would write here. As many may know, this is not Dr. Talbot’s and my first discussion over epistemological issues (see here). This is extremely important for the reader to know, since much of this present discussion is really predicated on that initial interaction. I “broke off that discussion” with Dr. Talbot NOT because I was being “humiliated”, but because mutual friends urged me to, plus I DID give plenty of answers…just not answers Dr. Talbot “accepted”.

Dr. Talbot responds:
You forgot about the apology, didn’t you? You wrote on Pretblog in a post entitled “An Appeal to Dr. Talbot for Forgiveness.” You wrote that:

“So, during a recent posting upon the subject of epistemology (ref) & a follow up article (ref), Dr. Talbot took issue with my presentations. My eventual responses to Dr. Talbot were neither honorable nor fair to him.”

Roderick, you gave answers to questions that I did not ask. No matter how many times, you gave answers that were irrational and then I followed with requests that you should demonstrate your method. You could not do it! Then you ignored the issues and tried to go in another direction, only to be confronted again by my questions and requests for demonstrations of your theorem. Nor did I state that you were “humiliated” as a result of your inability to answer the questions, I will take a citation for that from that previous interaction.

Now Roderick, why should I accept you answers? They were not biblical! Is this a serious argument that and I quote you: “you got the answers, just not the ones you wanted, but that should have satisfied you.” You cannot be serious? If that is necessarily the case, then you need explain why when the hyperpreterists give you answers (if I should have accepted your and end the issue with you), why don’t you accept their answers? You cannot have it both ways! Do you realize just how irrational this sounds from you? If I should just accept your answers and that is the end of the issue, then that “argument or tactic” cuts both ways. When the hyperpreterists give you answers, then you should just accept them and that is the end of the issue for you with them. However, it is not, is it? You did not get the answers you wanted from the Hyperpreterists, so you continue to ask more questions. Or does this ‘principle’ only apply to you when someone is taking you to task on a theological or philosophical issue that you cannot deal with? That is essentially what you have stated above. Let us take this a step further and leave the Hyperpreterists out of this. I gave you an answer, and you would not accept it, why did you not just accept my answer and put an end to it? You could not do it. Why? I do not what to make implications, but let the readers draw their own. Nevertheless, Roderick to make such a public statement as you have above is just inconceivable to a rational common sense individual.

Roderick states: “Further, please don’t insinuate that I am afraid to interact with you here or at PretBlog. I would ask Dr. Talbot to please refrain from these “tactics”, as they are not becoming of someone of his stature. They are more the “tactics” of the very heretics we are discussing.”

Dr. Talbot states: If you are reading this, the statement “I would ask Dr. Talbot to please refrain from these “tactics”, as they are not becoming of someone of his stature.” That is an ad hom argument. It is a fallacy. Again, just anther attempt to discredit my issue with your errant theological statements, by attacking my character. That might work with “some” of the hyperpreterists, but it is unwise to try it on me. Another fallacy!

I did not insinuate that you are afraid to interact with anyone. However, I am not sure it should be called ‘interacting.’ I said I with drew from Pretblog to give you the room to do “your thing.” I was a guest of Dee Dee Warren. I did not want her to be forced into just one more issue (with all that was on her plate) to have to deal with me and you. Further, I determined after talking with mutual friends that I would with draw, because I would not want to have to confront you in public on so many errant mistakes.

Now about “tactics,” if I remember correctly, it was you Roderick that posted a pic of Hitler (assumed to be Frost) and Chamberlin (Me) as the compromiser (that was so Christian of you!). Shall I post all those statements from the Pretblog site? “TACTICS!” Roderick, being a Christian is not knowing facts about the Bible or some grand delusion about being some super cult apologist, Christianity is truth that transforms the life of an individual. Would you explain for me how your behavior and attitude have changed from the time you were with the hyperpreterists until now? I have spoken to many people, both HPs and NonHPs and they say that while you position has changed the behavior has not! You changed positions, yes, but you have not changed one iota in behavior. Your sinful behavior is always justified by your believe that you can behave in any way that pleases you as long as you are opposing heretics or in my case, a true presuppositionalist. Roderick, your are a ‘pragmatist’ on this issue. Let one person do something different than what you think is the “better way” and they are compromisers, because they do not listen to Roderick. Roderick, you just do not get it, do you? But, then again, the statement that my ‘tactics’ is like the hyperpreterists is just another ad hom. Sorry, but if that is your best argument, it is no argument at all. And from here in this is what I expect I will find over and over again.

Roderick states: “Before we begin, I’d like Dr. Talbot to consider some things, perhaps personally concede them to himself.

Dr. Talbot responds: Why not out loud, because I have no problem answering them.

Roderick states: “1. Even though he is a seminary president, a subordinate may be able to at times correct him.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Just anther fallacy by Roderick. You see the question is loaded, if I say “yes,” then Roderick assumes you will conclude he was right. If I say “no” then I am made out to be an ‘egotistical’ individual. Nice try! Here is an example of the same “tactic” being used by Roderick. “Roderick are you still beating your wife.” Yes, or no! You see, some questions are meant to trap an individual. Now Roderick, let me tell you something. I have never claimed to be a scholar, a theologian, a philosopher. I have been given such acknowledgements and it is very kind, but I don’t claim such titles. However, I am a student of theology, church history, philosophy, law, education and pastoral counseling. Because I do study these issues, develop and educate students, I am ‘respected.’ I help people with many things, material, spiritual, etc. My subordinates are ‘respectful’ to me. Roderick, even when Mr. Frost was a student, as a ‘subordinate’ he was always kind and respectful. Even when I disagreed with him, while a student, he never acted the way you have. Oh, yes, I am sure I have my detractors. But most of them are still respectful.

Roderick states: 2. “Clarkianism”, for whatever devotion Dr. Talbot contributes to it, is NOT the traditional Christian apologetic/epistemology. What Dr. Gordon Clark was advocating was NOT well-received by the bulk of Reformed Christianity. This does NOT however speak to its correctness or error. Only that I would like Dr. Talbot to please stop acting like a person is not Reformed unless they hold to some form of Clarkianism. Thank you.

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, first, show me where I have ever said that anyone was not reformed because of their apologetics? This is a lie! I have over 350 students in the seminary, they all hold to one of three major forms of apologetics? Do you know what those there system are even called? Can you explicate their meanings to me?

Now Roderick states that he is a “classical presuppositionalist” which is rather funny, because no presuppositionalist uses that type of terminology “classical”, at least not about “presuppositionalism.” It is a term used for “Classical Apologetics” to designate the rational/evidential view of apologetics, such, Dr. R.C. Sproul and St. Thomas. Actually, the majority of Reformed theologians were philosophically either “Classical Apologists” or “Common Sense Realist” as it relates to the “Princeton Tradition.” You really do not know what you are talking about! You “humiliate” your self with errant statements like this. Thomistic theories were held among most the Westminster Divines. Ouch! Roderick’s point is this, my first principle is that the Bible is our point of beginning. That he says is not the “classical” presuppositional position. Roderick, I warned you not to embarrass your self. But you would not listen, and I haven’t even gotten my paper on Calvin finished for publication. Traditionally, “presuppositonal apologetics” is traced back to Calvin (some might argue Augustine). Now what we need is to determine what the historic “presuppositionalists” held to as the source of their first principles that are essential to theology and apologetics, that is, their primary point of beginning.
Let me indulge the reader first because Roderick had written previously: “I am a presupppositionalist & my presupposed starting point is that God is Sovereign & carries out His plans effectively. Any other starting point, I find always fails. When a person claims their starting point is the Bible — as noble as that sounds, I then must ask them what Bible? How do they know the one we have is accurate? Then how do they know their interpretation is accurate. See how it keeps coming back to God’s Sovereign ability to maintain truth?” (Why I Appeal to ‘Historic Christianity’ Filed Under (Roderick’s Posts, history, hyperpreterism, preterism, terminology, worldview) by Roderick_E on 09-07-2009 ) Now what makes this most “confusing” is that Roderick turns around and says in the same article: “The Bible is our prime source.” What you are witnessing is a person who says two different things about the same thing. In logic it is called the violation of the law of non-contradiction. A cannot be A and non A at the same time. Either, our first principle or presupposition is “the Bible is the Word of God written” which is therefore our “source” or it is “propositions” – first principle proposition is – “God is Sovereign.” Remember this question Roderick. From what did your derive that proposition that “God is Sovereign.” A presuppositionalist argues that their point of beginning needs no justificationi. However, you turn around and say “The Bible is our prime source.” The latter statement is my first principle stated exactly! Now NO Christian apologetist that I have read, and in 34 years, I have read many, many, more than you have, not one to-date has stated that “God is Sovereign” as the first principle. Show me one that makes that claim! “God is Sovereign” as the first principle.” Don’t say it is so, show me. Show me! Hey, where are those citations?
Now let me get back to my point about presuppositionalists. What is their point of beginning? What is the basis for their theological method:

Calvin (again is say some might claim Augustine (but he was more of a early classical rationalist), was the chief developer of this modern system that believes that our knowledge of God, knowledge that is not perverted by sin (innate and creational) must come from the Bible (this differed greatly from the medieval scholastics). That is the basic presupposition for our true and sure knowledge of God? The Bible! All other theories apart from Scripture Calvin will maintain, leads men to false gods (the Calvin paper has many of Calvin’s statements like this).

“For if we reflect how prone the human mind is to lapse into forgetfulness of God, how readily inclined to every kind of error, how bent every now and then on devising new and fictitious religions, it will be easy to understand how necessary it was to make such a depository of doctrine as would secure it from either perishing by the neglect, vanishing away amid the errors, or being corrupted by the presumptuous audacity of men. It being thus manifest that God, foreseeing the inefficiency of his image imprinted on the fair form of the universe, has given the assistance of his Word to all whom he has ever been pleased to instruct effectually, we, too, must pursue this straight path, if we aspire in earnest to a genuine contemplation of God; — we must go, I say, to the Word, where the character of God, drawn from his works is described accurately and to the life; these works being estimated, not by our depraved judgment, but by the standard of eternal truth.” (Institutes Vol. I, Chapter 6, Section 1).

Remember Roderick said: “I then must ask them what Bible? How do they know the one we have is accurate?” Well Calvin answers Roderick’s objection: Calvin states:

“There is nothing repugnant here to what was lately said, (chap. 7) that we have no great certainty of the word itself, until it be confirmed by the testimony of the Spirit. For the Lord has so knit together the certainty of his word and his Spirit, that our minds are duly imbued with reverence for the word when the Spirit shining upon it enables us there to behold the face of God; and, on the other hand, we embrace the Spirit with no danger of delusion when we recognize him in his image, that is, in his word.” (Institutes Vol. I, Chapter 9, Section 3).

Can you guess who also holds to Calvin’s view? Here is Calvin’s legacy concerning the proper ‘presupposition’ for Reformed theology and apologetics. You of course knew I would begin with Clark, but let me introduce you to the other apologetists who agree with Calvin, and, by the way, agreed with Dr. Clark.

Dr. Gordon Clark states:

“The first principle cannot be demonstrated because there is nothing prior from which to deduce it. Call it presuppositionalism, call it fideism, names do not matter. But I know no better presupposition than “the Bible alone, and the Bible in its entirety, is the Word of God written, and therefore inerrant in the autographs.” (Against the World, pgs. 192-193)

Now just where does Dr. Cornelius Van Til begin his presuppositional method? Dr. GREG BAHNSEN, student of Dr. Van Til, wrote the following article entitled “Van Til’s “Presuppositionalism”

“In the words of 1 Peter 3:15, the personal prerequisite for offering a reasoned defense of the Christian faith is this: “set apart Christ as Lord in your hearts.” Christ must be the ultimate authority over our philosophy, our reasoning, and our argumentation — not just at the end, but at the beginning, of the apologetical endeavor. If we are to “cast down reasonings and every high thing exalted against the knowledge of God,” said Paul, then we must “bring every thought captive to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5.) An ultimate commitment to Christ covers the entire range of human activity, including every aspect of intellectual endeavor. To reason in a way which does not recognize this is to transgress the first and great commandment: “You shall love the Lord your God with… all your mind” (Matthew 22:37). In light of this, our thoughts about apologetic method should be controlled by the word of Jesus Christ, not merely our apologetic conclusions. Very simply, if the apologist is to rid himself of profane audacity, his faith in the greatness of divine wisdom must be championed by means of a procedure which itself honors the same wisdom. After all, in Christ “all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are deposited” (Colossians 2:3), no exception being made for the knowledge by which the Christian defends the knowledge of Christ. This means the apologist must presuppose the truth of God’s word from start to finish in his apologetic witness. A “presupposition” is an elementary assumption in one’s reasoning or in the process by which opinions are formed. Penpoint Vol. VI:1 (January, 1995)

Dr. JOHN FRAME as student of Dr. Van Til and a supporter of his apologetic method stated in a position paper entitled: PRESUPPOSITIONAL APOLOGETICS: AN INTRODUCTION :Part 1 of 2:” Introduction and Creation.”

“In defending the Christian faith, the most important question before us is “What sort of defense will best glorify our God (cf. 1 Cor. 10:31)?” God forbid that in seeking to defend the faith before others we should in that very act compromise it. The so-called “presuppositional” school of apologetics is concerned above all with answering this question. Of course, there are other questions in apologetics which, although of less ultimate importance, also deserve answers. Presuppositionalists have discussed those too. But in view of our space limitation, and in order to do justice to the main thrust of presuppositionalism, I must focus our attention on this most important question and then as space permits relate some other issues to this one. Among all the sources of divine revelation (including nature, history, human beings in God’s image), Scripture plays a central role. Indeed, though the point cannot be argued in detail here, my view is that Scripture is the supremely authoritative, inerrant Word of God, the divinely authored, written constitution of the church of Jesus Christ. Scripture is therefore the foundational authority for all of human life including apologetics. As the ultimate authority, the very Word of God, it provides the foundational justifications for all our reasoning, without itself being subject to prior justification. … Once we have made the distinction between God’s Word and the “imaginations of our own hearts,” God calls us to live according to the former. God’s Word is true (therefore dependable), though every human authority may lie (Rom. 3:4). If we adopt the Word of God as our ultimate commitment, our ultimate standard, our ultimate criterion of truth and falsity, God’s Word then becomes our “presupposition.” That is to say, since we use it to evaluate all other beliefs, we must regard it as more certain than any other beliefs” (IIIM Magazine, Volume 1, Number 8, April 19 to April 25, 1999).

DR. CORNELIUS VAN TIL himself wrote:

“I think there is a better and more truly biblical way of reasoning with and winning unbelievers than the Romanist Arminian method permits. To begin with then I take what the Bible says about God and his relation to the universe as unquestionably true on its own authority. The Bible requires men to believe that he exists apart from and above the world and that he by his plan controls whatever takes place in the world. Everything in the created universe therefore displays the fact that it is controlled by God, that it is what it is by virtue of the place that it occupies in the plan of God.” “The only ‘proof’ of the Christian position is that unless its truth is presupposed there is no possibility of ‘proving’ anything at all.” What the Christian sets forth as the Bible’s worldview – as authoritatively revealed by God – is the indispensable foundation for proof itself – for the intelligibility of reason and experience, the ability to make sense of knowing anything whatsoever.” (The Bible Today, 42, no. 9 (June-Sept., 1949):278-290).

Now here is my point. Clark, Van Til, Bahnsen, and Frame all say that the presupposition must be the Bible. The Word of God as self-authenticating, which is proof itself as Dr. Van Til and Dr. Clark both held, as did Dr. John Calvin. Why must we ‘confessionalists’ believe this? On the authority that the Bible alone is our ‘supreme authority’ just as stated in the Westminster Confession of Faith, Chapter 1.

Well, I thought that this was interesting.

Roderick states: 3. “Dr. Talbot, by his own actions has been bolstering the resolve of the heretical group called hyperpreterism. These are not my own observations alone, but observations by the hyperpreterists themselves. Samuel Frost, a student of Dr. Talbot has been advocating hyperpreterism for at least 15 years, often crediting Dr. Talbot’s own seminary for giving him the training that Frost has used to conclude hyperpreterism.”

Dr. Talbot responds: “Roderick, man, you are unbelievable! Samuel Frost never said that studying the curriculum at Whitefield Theological Seminary is what made him a Full Preteristi, he said he came to that conclusion apart from the fact the WTS doctrine (well Gentry usually gets the blame) and I think that it is heretical. Roderick, a School can offer only the education, we cannot “program” any student to become “anything.” This is just another ad hom argument! Did Sam Frost get a good education at WTS. We offer a “classically Reformed education.” Our eschatology is taught by Dr. Kenneth Gentry. Are you impugning Dr. Gentry’s Character? We use Dr. Mattison’s writings also, so may I assume your are impugning him as well? I guess we will impugn Calvin, Turretin, The Westminster Divines, Dr. Robert Reymond, etc. since we used their materials, so they are responsible for Hyperpreterism? It’s called a “choice.” You clearly no nothing about education! Now with such “brilliant” reasoning, that means that every seminary that had a student take an different direction in this theological thinking, a position that is not held by the institution, nevertheless, the institution is some how responsible for the student’s bad choice of theology? That is like saying, the gun makers are responsible for gun owners who mishandle the guns and kill people, because they bought the gun from the company! Do you really think this way?

Roderick states: “In all that time, until this year, Dr. Talbot, to my knowledge has not publicly done anything to discourage and repudiate Frost’s use of his training as an association to heresy.”

Dr. Talbot responds: “This is almost too funny to answer, but why not. There is nothing more silly than watching a fellow point a gun at his own head that threaten to shoot you. Roderick. Until last year, I did not know you until I got that “threaten” letter about “exposing WTS” because of Samuel Frost’s hyperpreterism. You did not know me and if you hadn’t mentioned Samuel’s name, I would not even known who you were! Your knowledge about me who you did not know! Are you claiming some sort of “omniscience” here? WTS is now in its 29th year. You did not even know anything about WTS or me, or you would not have written the letter asking if I knew Samuel Frost was using WTS and me as a means to (as you call it) “promote” his views. If you knew that I “hadn’t said anything to date” (which is just a lie!), you would have had no reason to write that letter! Further, there are federal laws that protect students while engaged in education and we are bound to them and must handle every issue very carefully. When Samuel Frost said that you and he were old “enemies” in a battle over Preterism, that was the only thing I knew about you. I called Dr. Gentry, he nothing about you except that you were a “hyperpreterist,” (guess news travels slow) and that I should stay away from you because you had a bad reputation. You were not a part of my life, never phoned, never met in person, never a letter, not an e-mail, nothing! Yet you make this ridiculous statement that I had not done anything “public” (which begs a question – does that mean that everyone who knows anything about Hyperpreterism must go public and battle it or them, or they are guilty as well?) against Mr. Frost. Truth is, you know nothing about those 28 years. When I told you that WTS held to the Westminster Standards and that Hyperpreterism was outside the confession, so everyone knows what we believe, just read it, you said that was not good enough. I wrote and said in an e-mail, As President of WTS, we do not teach or hold to Hyperpreterism, You said that was not good enough. It had to come from the Board. That is when I ended my conversations with you. For that I am thankful, because Dee Dee Warren wrote a very kind and polite e-mail and that began new friendship. Further, I have two graduates who have done more to battle hyperpreterism (Gentry and Mathison) than you will do in a life time! Eschatology is not what I am primarily trained in; it is Philosophy, education, theology (some eschatology of course), law, church history, and pastoral counseling. You don’t think that Dr. Gentry and Dr. Mathison were doing a good enough job? That I need to drop my pastoral duties, seminary duties, homeschooling duties, counseling duties, conference duties, I have set on 25 different boards of directors, protested for years at abortion clinics and rallies. Personally spent ten years lobbying the State of Florida over the rights of parents to educate their children at home, and for colleges to be free from state entanglement. I taught in Christian Schools, held adjunct professorships, was averaging 6 to 10 conferences a year (many on civil issues as well as theology and apologetics). I Moderated both our general assembly (4 years) and Presbytery (9 years), held the chair for credentials committee and Book of Church Order for 15years. Worked in Drug rehab as a counselor for teenagers. I currently set on a State Board which oversees millions of dollars (tax money) to ensure it is not being wasted. I could list much more, but I think I have made my point. You don’t know me, and you have not walked in my shoes. Your battle has been on a computer. I am doing the work of God in the real world! Now if I need witnesses, I can give them to you. Dr. Gentry, Dr. Crampton, Dr. Kayser, Dr. Carl Bogue, Rev. Dick Jones, (how many do you want?) I have lots more to call upon! This is another fallacy of yours!

Roderick states: “You can read Frost’s recent statements where he believes Dr. Talbot has almost single-handedly given a “major victory” to the hyperpreterist cause (see here & here) due to Dr. Talbot’s epistemology and his blurring the lines between what is and isn’t heretical.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, did you read these articles? Samuel Frost did not say that about me. Both articles are about Dr. Kelly Birks IBD position over against CBV. He said it took place on Preterism Debate, but lets look at the quote that includes TE: Samuel Frost states:

“Recently, I came across a shocking statement from Dr. Kelly Birks, which must be quoted in full, given by him on Larry Siegle’s Preterism Debate site (TE stands for Theology Explains, a website created by Sharon Nichols, but approved by Dr. Talbot and a host of other Reformed scholars and pastors (mostly associated with Whitefield Theological Seminary)). What I would like the reader here to note is how Birks “gets around” the charge of heresy for his Immortal Body at Death view, which basically means, that the soul, instead of resuming the body with which it is now clothed, will obtain a new and different body upon death. If Birks’ view gets a stamp of approval from the gentlemen representing Theology Explains, then all of the charges against us on matters of “acceptible orthodoxy” is, in one fell swoop, dismissed.”

First Roderick, this is a logical fallacy by Sam (you didn’t know this, WOW) Now Roderick, Samuel says “If Birks” gets a “stamp of approval” from the gentlemen representing Theology Explains.” Well, first this is not what you stated. You misrepresented the statement! It is called a hyperbole, that is, an exaggerated statement! This is because I permitted Dr. Birks to become a member of TE and for a reason. Now Samuel, Larry, and few others wanted to join TE, but we said no. Needless to say they were not too happy. This is their tactic to try to force me to put Dr. Birks out! Nice try Sam! But you Roderick, who knows so much about the “tactics” of the Hyperpreterists didn’t see that tactical move by them? Now if you say you did, then you are being disingenuous to use their “tactic” (what, Roderick is using their tactics?) against me? However, if you did not see that, then what you stated below is even lower than the Hyperpreterist and you walked right into it! Let’s take a close look! Oh, by the way, neither I, nor do the TE or Seminary professors hold or approve of the IBD position. Dr. Birks knows that as well. So you ask: “What are you doing with Dr. Birks at TE? Well I could ask the same question about what is he doing at Pretblog! But here is the answer if you must know – ITS NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS! I don’t answer to you! Actually, I do answer to Sharon, she owns the site (after this issue, I am in the dog house because I promised not to make this a debate site). We are opening the other one back up and it will be FANTASTIC!

Roderick states:
“Dr. Talbot’s interaction with the hyperpreterist movement is a recent development. I’d urge him to take more time to consider the work of people who have been at this longer than he, despite his seminary training. Sometimes, theoretical experience is not the same as practical experience. Thank you.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, you are worse than the Hyperpreterists when it comes to arrogance! You think way to highly of yourself, but ascribe it to others. Sorry, but even the hyperpreterists to my knowledge have not said such a thing to me! This is shameful! You disgrace yourself. I am not humiliating you, you are humiliating yourself. You need to go and ask others who will be truthful with you what they think about your attitude. I could give you a list, but you know most of them.

Roderick states: “Now, I don’t say these things to Dr. Talbot to “humiliate” him, as seems to be his intention toward me. As a matter of fact I love and want to protect his reputation as much as possible, again the reason I broke off the other discussion was at the urging of my and Dr. Talbot’s mutual friends. But I would ask him to seriously consider the 3 points above.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Again, you assume what I have not said, especially in light of this article. Yes, I am being a little hard on you, but it seems others aren’t willing to take the abuse from you so, I will address this again. You so far have only proven that (1) you lie, (2) you misrepresent statements, (3) you use ad hom arguments, and (4) you are full of yourself. I am not humiliated, not at all! With the kind of love and protection you offer, (I know this is not becoming a man of my stature) I will pass. I have really never had anyone love and protect me in this manner.

PART TWO OF TWO COMMENTS

RESPONSE #1 TO DR. TALBOT (responding to content in Dr. Talbot’s comments here)

Roderick states: Dr. T said: “Thank for attempting to answer the question. But you have only added to the confusion.” Again, Dr. T, please do not behave like this. I DID answer the question. Any confusion you may be experiencing is regrettable and I hope to remedy that as I continue. But please read what I am saying in comparison to your quotes. Thanks.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, it was the wrong answer, if you call it an answer at all. The confusion is all yours. The only problem I have is you have many conflicting answers, sometimes they are even my answers, but it is so irrational and poorly stated.

Roderick states: Dr. T said: “What do you mean by “I like to deal first and foremost with the proposition of an argument.” What method does that invoke? Why would not that method include the “exegesis” which is also propositional” See, Dr. T. I did NOT say what you said above. I did NOT say I would not include “exegesis”.

Dr. Talbot responds:
Roderick, I never said you exclude “exegesis.” You really need to read what I said. Roderick, I asked you what you meant when you said “I like to deal first and foremost with the proposition of an argument.” That statement says nothing about “excluding” as you say. However, why would you not “include the exegesis” since they are propositions also. No wonder you are having problems, you cannot read what I am writing. Better yet, let me restate my question, because you took it out of context, which really shows that you missed the point. “I like to deal first and foremost with the proposition of an argument.” What method does that invoke? Why would not that method include the “exegesis” which is also propositional, and if, it is a part of the argument of your opponent, your previous statement would require you to do what you say you would prefer not to do? This is irrational because you cannot actually avoid the necessary logical implications. Further, why is the propositions of Scripture considered secondary rather than primary?” No, I did not say, what you said I said. But you did not answer what I asked either.

Roderick stated: “I said I start first with the heretic’s proposition.”

Dr. Talbots responds: “Actually you stated two things: “Yes, you are correct — ALL STATEMENTS ARE PROPOSITIONAL — that is exactly the point and why I like to deal first and foremost with the proposition of an argument BEFORE I get into the so-called “evidence/exegesis”. The overarching proposition of historic Christianity is that God is sovereign, in complete control. God has planned and decreed things, not just let them haphazardly unfold for anyone to take up. This is the proposition of almost every Reformer. Do I need to name and cite?” Now Roderick, you have two things confused here and this is just because you lack an education. There is a difference between “testing truth claims” and stating something as a “first principle” which you state as the first principle being “the overarching proposition of historic Christianity is that God is sovereign.” Do you know the difference? However, let me repost my question, because you must have missed the point again! Yes, let me do it again and I will (like you) will put key terms in caps: “What method does that invoke? Why would not that method include the “exegesis” which is also propositional, AND IF, IT IS A PART OF THE ARGUMENT OF YOUR OPPONENT YOUR PREVIOUS STATEMENT WOULD REQUIRE YOU TO DO WHAT YOU SAY YOU WOULD PREFER NOT TO DO? Roderick, if your “opponent” has given an exegetical argument, would that not then “logically” presume that your dealing or responding to his argument include exegetical responses also? Now I want to point out that if this is not the case, then everything Paul T has written is “out the door” because he did it wrong and Paul’s responses are at least seeking to engage the Scriptural argument, and not chant over and over again 2000+ of church history. Sorry, Yes, I agree and have written that “not because the church said it” but because they came to the same conclusions as a result of their exegesis, to embrace the 4 doctrinal positions commonly known in systematic as “general eschatology” (1) Visible manifestation of Christ, (2) resurrection of the dead, (3) final judgment, and (4) consummation of time or history. But Roderick, it is not that the “Church” has any authority to make any declaration that is binding, except what is written in Scripture. If you have misstated this once, you have misstated it a hundred times! You say you are Reformed Presbyterian, but you seem to know little about the Westminster Confession of Faith and what were the issues during the Reformation.

Roderick states: “And whether you admit it or not, you actually agree. In a follow up comment you said, and please allow me to make your words bold here as they are very, very important to this entire discussion: “They [hyperpreterists] come with presuppositional dogma that forces them to skew exegetical studies, twist the Scriptures with “bad” hermeneutics, and then with a boldness that boast on the side of arrogance, they assert that they alone have the “key” to the “truth which unlocks the knowledge of God about the whole Bible which has been misinterpreted and everything needs to be tweaked to get it right.” Amen! I guess this discussion is over since you agree that for all their claims at “exegesis” and “hermeneutics”, the FIRST and FOREMOST problem with hyperpreterism (and all heresies, as I state in my original article here on TE), is that as you say “they come with propositional dogma that forces them to skew”.

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, you missed a word that is key to the text. I said “presuppositional DOGMA.” Now I know you have not received a seminary education, but where does dogma normally come from? The Hyperpreterist have (in my opinion) misinterpreted a text and then required all other texts to conform to the doctrine they created by faulty exegesis. Now, anyone dealing with the Hyperpreterists is going to be confronted with a lot of text proofing, some exegetical studies (those who actually do have training, and those who seriously lack it, but pretend they do), and systematic or theological propositions developed from their exegesis. Look at their writings, some of them are doing exactly what the Westminster Confession says ought to be done. Do we through out the Westminster Confession because the Hyperpreterists are following it? It is not the form, but the false exegetical and hermeneutical interpretations that have lead to their heretical dogma! Form and content are two different things!

Roderick states: “That is the SAME as me saying they start with a proposition that is antithetical to ALL of historic Christian interpretation.”

Dr. Talbot responds: No, Roderick, you are wrong. You just don’t get it do you? I mean you are really blind to this thing! What I said is how they get their dogma, and that in that way it is antithetical to historic Christian interpretation, but that is not what you have been saying at all.

Roderick states: “Now can we drop this fake discussion and get to the real one you are itching to take up here?”

Dr. Talbot responds: The only thing “fake” about this discussion is YOU! Sorry, I know that hurts, but you choose your words poorly! So, as you do unto others, this time, I will return it unto you. That is about how you would interpret it. Sorry, but it is late and I am being a bit sarcastic from reading your arguments.

Roderick states
: “Obviously you have just conceded the main thrust of my original article. Right?”

Dr. Talbot responds:
You could not be more wrong!

Roderick states: “Dr. T. says: “Further, why is the propositions of Scripture considered secondary rather than primary? That is a Roman Catholic type argument. How do you prioritize these propositions?” Dr. Talbot, you answered your own question quite nicely. When interacting with heresies the primary consideration is that their exegesis/hermeneutic is SKEWED by their false proposition.

Dr. Talbot responds: Their “propositional DOGMA.” Now reread what I already have written and you will see you errant interpretation again!

Roderick states: “Therefore, let us first consider their proposition. The proposition of hyperpreterists, whether they will admit to it openly or not is that for whatever reason, God was unable or unwilling to maintain the most basic understanding of His plan within the community of saints.”

Dr. Talbot responds: “Sorry, I have had a lot of discussion with both Samuel Frost and Dr. Birks, and neither of them has ever told me that that was the primary position of Full (Hyper) Preterism. That might have been your primary position, but I have yet to see that statement that you claim in writing. Would you kindly give a source for that, and in particular, from Samuel and/or any other seminary trained (not to put any one down because they lack a seminary education), or OK, Dave Green, who has stated that that this is their first proposition. Because I know that Samuel Frost, Jason Bradfield, Larry Siegle and others following them, state that their first principle is “The Bible is the Word of God written.” I don’t know about the other sites, because in truth, I really have not been interested in those who are universalists. I have only an interest in those who claim to be Reformed and Orthodox. So, to be up front and honest in our dealings with the Hyperpreterists, SHOW ME THE STATEMENT THAT SAYS THAT WHAT YOU SAID IS THEIR FIRST PROPOSITION. Now Roderick, this really concerns me, because you state “whether they will admit to it openly or not is that for whatever reason” is raising BIG RED FLAGS! If they don’t say it, and say that is not true, and say, “here is what we believe and it is our first principle”, it is a misrepresentation, no, it is a lie to say something that they have not said. To say, “this is really what they say, but they don’t say it, but we know it, because we can read their thoughts.” Roderick, this really bothers me that you would say such a thing in public! You have openly stated that you are building a straw-man argument and if we all “unite” under this argument, we can beat them. In legal terms we call that FRAUD! In logic a STAW-MAN argument! In ethics is a MISREPRESENTATION of the truth, and in the Bible, it is called a Lie.

Roderick states: “If we do not first address this false proposition (and you can do so from the Bible, I never said we couldn’t or shouldn’t)”

Dr. Talbot responds:
Roderick is that you over their typing this now, or did the dog jump in while you were taking a break! Roderick, If I can do so from the Bible, then you have really wasted my time – are you kidding? You said “I never said we couldn’t or shouldn’t). WHAT IS THIS!? This is just unbelievable!

Roderick states: “but if we don’t first address this false proposition, then we would merely chase our tails with the SKEWED “exegesis/hermeneutics” that we would be validating by treating it as if it was on par with acceptable exegesis/hermeneutics.”

Dr. Talbot responds: WHAT ARE YOU SAYINIG? MAKE UP A LIE ABOUT THE HYPERPRETERISTS? You do not have to lie to counter a false teaching, which it is my opinion, just give them the truth! My job is only to show the truth of Scripture, I am not God and thus you really believe that by some conjured up scheme I will convert them? Roderick, your right, I have only been here for about 1 year. However, if I know one thing about Samuel Frost, Michael Bennett, and others, if you want to confront their arguments, then you are going to have to confront their interpretations. Roderick, I am not going to be tied to this computer chasing the Hyperpreterists the rest of my life. I am writing a book against it (which I have funding to send it to every Reformed and Evangelical Pastor in the country). I will produce a DVD – like Amazing Grace: History and Theology of Calvinism (it is on the drawing board as we speak). And I will leave a website loaded with all the arguments necessary for research on Hyperpreterism.

Roderick states: “It is the heretic that has “prioritized” our need to address their erroneous proposition, since as you agreed that is what is driving their false interpretations. Are you still confused?”

Dr. Talbot responds: No, I am not confused, I am almost at a loss for words at what you have said. You have publicly handed the Hyperpreterists the rope that they will hang you with. PUBLIC ANNOUNCMENT – I AM NOT INVOLVED IN THIS SKEEM AND I WILL CONTINIUE TO FOLLOW THE HISTORIC REFORMED TRADITION after I settle some other issues that remain to be finished. I am testing truth claims. I know what that means, and how to do it. I am involved in the negative test currently, then I will go to the positive test (I bet Samuel Frost and Jason Bradfield are the only ones who understand that statement). That Roderick is what makes them good adversaries, (not good as in right) good as, for example, I play chess, I am not really good, but fair. But to play someone who also has many of the skills that they have philosophically, they are harder to deal with. They are clever, they use logic, they employ philosophical arguments that the average person has not even heard of and that frustrates the laymen. As far a heretics go, they are as good as they get! But their failure will be to underestimate my “strategy” and Samuel Frost calls it. Now, if he has figured it out already, it is not much of a strategy is it? Sorry, Samuel, I had to not respond before, I just love you thinking you got me cornered and your getting the smoke and mirrors. Now, to be sure, it is not a game at all, but it is unquestionably strategic. However, that is the philosophical side of me coming out.

Roderick states: Dr. T says: “I chose the “propositions” of the Bible because God says that I must believe His Word. Why do you choose other non-biblical propositions?” Dr. T, you didn’t choose the propositions in this case, but rather the heretic has chosen them, if you allow his false proposition to stand.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, let me see, Dr. Calvin started with that proposition, Dr. Van Til, Dr. Clark, Dr. Frame, Dr. Bahnsen, Dr. Gentry, the Westminster Divines, are you saying that they are all hereitics? I mean, Most of the fellows at SGP or PD are younger than I am! I taught Samuel Apologetics! Are you kidding! I cannot wait to get my paper out on this site about Calvin’s Doctrine of Scripture.

Roderick states: Now, you can do one of two things; (1) Let the heretical proposition stand and let the heretic take you on an “exegetical / hermeneutical” wild-goose chase as you pretend that their handling of Scripture is on par with historic Christian interpretation.

Dr. Talbot responds: First, it is you who is pretending! You are pretending to know something that you know very little about. Secondly, well Paul T, what Samuel did not say about you, Roderick just did! Paul T, I will apologize for Roderick. I think you are dealing with the issues of exegesis and Scripture and that is what must take place. Oh, and to all you Reformed theologians, living and dead, I also apologize for Roderick.

Roderick states: “(2) You can point out that false proposition of the heretic and let them know they cannot engage you with Scripture until they and you first have a discussion as to why their proposition (driving their exegesis) is wrong.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Just another fallacy, you sure have a lot of them! It is a false dilemma that I only have two options. I bet if you think real hard, no, scratch that, I will proved another choice, at least one that will prove my point, but if you need more, I can provide them also: (3) I can engage them in ‘testing truth claims” and then deal with exegetical studies. Thus, I have three options, not two as you falsely state.

Roderick states: “I have simply chosen course 2 and yet you want to berate me for it? Of course I can discuss the “propositions of the Bible” with a heretic, since as you admit, the SKEW their very interpretation of the Bible. With all their redefinition of terms, false etymologies and complete disregard for context. It is almost as pointless as discussing football with someone who insist on calling it basketball and calling touchdowns, layups. They are operating on a faulty view of the basics.”

Dr. Talbot states: This reminds me of the democratic national convention – flip/flop.

Roderick states: “Let me conclude with saying I find it commendable that you for stating you “will not hold back anything on what I believe is ‘errant theology.'” My only concern is that you waited so long as Frost “prostituted” (your word) WTS, Clarkianism and his training as being the reason he has embraced the heresy of hyperpreterism.

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, again you put words into my mouth! Do you know how bad they taste! How do you know I have not confront Samuel? Why did Samuel write publicly that I thought his eschatology is heretical? Did he use my name wrongfully? Well if he said that I thought his view was Reformed, Evangelical, or Orthodox, then yes he did. Just SHOW me the written statements. Now, if he said he was confronted by Dr. Crampton and myself on this issue over lunch (nearly 3 hours) he was under the gun, and that we acted like Christians, were not unkind, did not poison him, shoot him, stuck a knife in him, yes that is true.

Let me explain something Roderick. I did not know you until last year. I have no idea what made you leave HPs and come to the Reformed Evangelical Orthodox position. But I am sure of one thing, You have a zeal, but it is without knowledge. You show poor wisdom in all that you have said and done. I rarely engage people this personal, but you made it personal. And by your standards, I guess you have enjoyed this. I bet it would not matter who you were battling, just as long as it is battling someone.

Roderick states: “Why did you “hold back” while Frost, your own student has been actively promoting not only “errant theology,” but “damnable heresy”? I do thank you for some of your recent work but again, the hyperpreterists, with Frost at the head actually think you have sold the farm and given them a victory. Please be concerned.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, I am an Calvinisti, I have already read who wins this battle! Now you say that Samuel Frost has promoted “damnable heresy,” which I am some how responsible for. This irrational logic is beyond me. Well, Roderick, I have publicly said that I think that hyperpreterism is heretical. I will be engaging them exegetically in the near future. What I have not said is that they are not Christians or converted. They are not orthodox, but even the Reformers held that with the Catholic Church in a state of apostasy, there are many who are elect and Christian. Now that is an historical position of the Reformed and Presbyterian Churches until 1845, and it returned to the view as acceptable during the 1930s. To prove damnable, one I believe will have to exegetically prove that because of their exegetical fallacy, they have impeded upon an essential of the faith (and it need be on one essential), can it be called damnable heresy! One thing for sure, you have not even attempted the work required. Actually, Dee Dee has come much closer than you, and that is because she takes the Scripture in hand and deals with the arguments. With her raw talent, given an education at the seminary, she will be one “bad” (in a good way) apologists (my opinion only).

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, you don’t like the way I do things, and you have expressed that publicly in many ugly ways, and only to then apologize and then restate them again. If you think I really care about what you think after the way you acted, you are sadly mistaken. You know, Dr. Jay Adams says that an apology is just a modern humanistic way of saying, “I got caught,” “but if I hadn’t got caught,” “I would not have apologized.” You see Roderick your apologies are unbiblical! If you want to do anything, repent for your actions and words. Repentance means that you will do every thing that you can do to avoid repeating the same offenses again. But I will not hold my breath.

Roderick states: “I thank you for clearing your schedule to give me full attention, but please let it not distract from issues you may find more pressing.”

Dr. Talbot responds: What is a brother for?

Roderick states: “I ask you, as a brother to step up to the plate on this one and take responsibility for Frost and what he has done under your charge and to make it clear that, hyperpreterist propositions SKEW exegesis/hermeneutics — to the point where discussion of exegesis/hermeneutics with a hyperpreterists is pointless without continuously bringing it back to the FACT of their overarching proposition.

Dr. Talbot responds: Sorry, I cannot do what you have asked me to do. It is unethical. You beat your drums and dance around the computer. I will battle as God has taught me by some of the best apologists in the country. I will do it on the terms and by the standards of ethical conduct and “testing truth claims” and “exegetical studies.”

Now here is the deal Roderick. I will take responsibility for Samuel, if you will take responsibility for President Obama, Senator Ted Kennedy (Guess God is doing that currently), Harry Reed, Nancy Pelosi, Dr. Kevorkian, Adolf Hitler, Judas, and, why not Adam (he got us here in the first place and you should be responsible for him too). Now be serious, how am I responsible for another man’s decisions? If that is the case, then we all answer for each other sins. You make no sense what so ever.

Nevetheless, I will confront the Hyperpreterist. Do I expect them to convert. Not likely. It would take the grace of God to change their minds. I am good at what I do, both in preaching and in apologetics, and even better in debating. But I am not so good that I will change them. You are trying to engage about 100 to 400 people. I have a better strategy, I am going to engage every Reformed and Evangelical Pastor in this country as to what Hyperpreterism is and what they need to understand. That part of my plan is almost over. What I do next? Let’s wait and see.

Roderick states:
“Thanks and good night. I will be gone most of the day tomorrow and I expect you will be busy as well. I will not insinuate anything if you do not answer soon. ;-)”

Dr. Talbot states:
Have a good night brother. This will be up and waiting for you when you get back. Be safe traveling. May the good Lord bless and keep you. You will be in my prayers.

In Christ and His Church (the united and continuity of the saints)
Roderick

Your humble servant in Christ,

Dr. Kenneth Talbot

Any further replies or responses will come as comments.  I plan on do a complete line-by-line interaction with Dr. Talbot’s charges soon.

Comment viewing options

Flat list – collapsedFlat list – expandedThreaded list – collapsedThreaded list – expanded
Date – newest firstDate – oldest first
10 comments per page30 comments per page50 comments per page70 comments per page90 comments per page150 comments per page200 comments per page250 comments per page300 comments per page

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click “Save settings” to activate your changes.

1st Response to Dr. Talbot

What follows is a response to Dr. Kenneth Talbot’s part 1 comments he posed to me on another forum.  Please read the entire article above for the full context.  My comments only reflect responses to Dr. Talbot’s immediate comments.  To see my original comments to which Dr. Talbot is responding, see exchange above.

Dear reader, though what you’re about to read may seem harsh, you have to realize, Dr. Talbot is a pastor and a seminary president. I am a nobody and thus how Dr. Talbot has interacted with me is significant.  As you read, keep asking yourself if the demeanor of Dr. Talbot’s comments are fitting for pastor and a seminary president.

DR. TALBOT:
You forgot about the apology, didn’t you? You wrote on Pretblog in a post entitled “An Appeal to Dr. Talbot for Forgiveness.” You wrote that:

“So, during a recent posting upon the subject of epistemology & a follow up article, Dr. Talbot took issue with my presentations. My eventual responses to Dr. Talbot were neither honorable nor fair to him.”

RODERICK:
My apology was for telling you not to communicate with me anymore.  I was frustrated only because some people were counseling me to just drop it for the “sake of the cause”.  I wanted to continue.  My responses in general were not wrong or anything to apologize for.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick, you gave answers to questions that I did not ask. No matter how many times, you gave answers that were irrational and then I followed with requests that you should demonstrate your method. You could not do it! Then you ignored the issues and tried to go in another direction, only to be confronted again by my questions and requests for demonstrations of your theorem. Nor did I state that you were “humiliated” as a result of your inability to answer the questions, I will take a citation for that from that previous interaction.

RODERICK:
Really? Who gets to decide if my answers were “irrational”?  You? On top of that I most certainly answered your questions, HOWEVER I did not follow your faulty premises.  It is sort of like if a person demands a yes or no answer to the question, “Have you stopped beating your wife?” — the premise is faulty, thus my answer would not be a “yes or no”, it would be an answer of explanation of the faulty premise.  When I have demostrated the method, which is a proposition that God exists and is sovereign, and that man as an natively endowed realization of the existence of God, and then even using the Bible to show the Bible also supports the proposition (Rom 1:20) And further quoting Calvin and B.B. Warfield, you want to claim I “ignored” you?  You want to claim I didn’t demonstrate? You want to claim I didn’t answer your questions?  If there was any “humilation” you might want to consider looking at yourself — not because I am some great debater, but because I answered you in a few simple lines and did not require verbosity. As this is going to merely be an interaction with your comments and not a take off on other issues, I will keep the citiations for a later article not specifically about you.

DR. TALBOT:
Now Roderick, why should I accept you answers? They were not biblical! Is this a serious argument that and I quote you: “you got the answers, just not the ones you wanted, but that should have satisfied you.” You cannot be serious?

RODERICK:
Well, an answer need not be “accepted” to be right or wrong.  You wanted to frame the answers the way you wanted to frame them.  Sorry.

DR. TALBOT:
If that is necessarily the case, then you need explain why when the hyperpreterists give you answers (if I should have accepted your and end the issue with you), why don’t you accept their answers? You cannot have it both ways! Do you realize just how irrational this sounds from you? If I should just accept your answers and that is the end of the issue, then that “argument or tactic” cuts both ways. When the hyperpreterists give you answers, then you should just accept them and that is the end of the issue for you with them. However, it is not, is it? You did not get the answers you wanted from the Hyperpreterists, so you continue to ask more questions.

RODERICK:
Actually I often accept the answers hyperpreterists give me, at least as their answers.  Accepting an answer does not speak to its correctness.  I accept that hyperpreterists think Jesus came back once and for in AD70 — however after I accept their answer, I demostrate why it is a wrong belief. You however will not seem to allow a person to answer, unless they answer the way you want them to answer.  This will be a downfall for you as you interact with the hyperpreterists.

DR. TALBOT:
Or does this ‘principle’ only apply to you when someone is taking you to task on a theological or philosophical issue that you cannot deal with? That is essentially what you have stated above. Let us take this a step further and leave the Hyperpreterists out of this. I gave you an answer, and you would not accept it, why did you not just accept my answer and put an end to it? You could not do it. Why? I do not want to make implications, but let the readers draw their own. Nevertheless, Roderick to make such a public statement as you have above is just inconceivable to a rational common sense individual.

RODERICK:
Huh?  Talk about irrational.  What answer did you give that I would not accept?  I accept that you are a Clarkian and espouse the Clarkian view, however I believe it is wrong and I have said why.  Your duplicitous “I don’t want to make implications” and then go on to urge readers to imply that I am “irrational” is part and parcel of the Sam Frost approach when he calls up radio shows and says he “doesn’t mean to bring up” the issue of hyperpreterism and yet he brings it up.  I think Sam was a good student of yours, and I am NOT implying it, I’m stating it as a fact.  He has learned your method of argumentation well.  He is a chip off the block.

DR. TALBOT:
If you are reading this, the statement [quoting Roderick] “I would ask Dr. Talbot to please refrain from these “tactics”, as they are not becoming of someone of his stature.” That is an ad hom argument. It is a fallacy. Again, just anther attempt to discredit my issue with your errant theological statements, by attacking my character. That might work with “some” of the hyperpreterists, but it is unwise to try it on me. Another fallacy!

RODERICK:
Ok wait a minute, you begin your interaction by calling me irrational, saying I’ve been humiliated and saying I cannot answer your questions and you have the nerve to talk about “ad hom” and claim I am “attacking” your character when in reality I am urging you not to behave in a manner that is beneath your station? 

DR. TALBOT:
I did not insinuate that you are afraid to interact with anyone. However, I am not sure it should be called ‘interacting.’ I said I with drew from Pretblog to give you the room to do “your thing.” I was a guest of Dee Dee Warren. I did not want her to be forced into just one more issue (with all that was on her plate) to have to deal with me and you. Further, I determined after talking with mutual friends that I would with draw, because I would not want to have to confront you in public on so many errant mistakes.

RODERICK:
Oh how gracious of you.  Yet you did that very thing, and you have continued since.  If you didn’t agree with the epistemology I brought forth, then why didn’t you write me or call me privately?  If you are soooo concerned for me?  No, rather you wanted to look like the “scholar” and come put me in my place.  But when you didn’t accomplish your goal, even the readers could tell that the Bible and Calvin and B.B. Warfield backed up the proposition that God exists and is sovereign is the starting point.  But you decided to make it personal.  This issue alone has caused the falling out between you and I and now here we are.

DR. TALBOT:
Now about “tactics,” if I remember correctly, it was you Roderick that posted a pic of Hitler (assumed to be Frost) and Chamberlin (Me) as the compromiser (that was so Christian of you!). Shall I post all those statements from the Pretblog site? “TACTICS!”

RODERICK:
Wait, for a man who prides himself on being so “rational” and “logical” you certainly are jumping to and fro here.  The key word was ASSUMED.  You assumed it was Frost when in reality maybe you should have just asked.  There is a long history of people compromising with the hyperpreterists — what you have been doing is just part of it.  Thus, Frost was neither alone depicted as Hitler nor you alone as Chamberlin — but after all, you have George Whitefield as your namesake (see more on Whitefield’s compromise with Wesley).

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick, being a Christian is not knowing facts about the Bible or some grand delusion about being some super cult apologist, Christianity is truth that transforms the life of an individual. Would you explain for me how your behavior and attitude have changed from the time you were with the hyperpreterists until now? I have spoken to many people, both HPs and NonHPs and they say that while you position has changed the behavior has not! You changed positions, yes, but you have not changed one iota in behavior.

RODERICK:
Now who is on the attack?  Who is making the ad homs?  You know what Dr. Talbot, for a man who only entered this fray 6 months ago you sure think you have it all figured out don’t you?  I’d say that is pretty arrogant.  I was a pain in the neck to hyperpreterists while I was a hyperpreterist because I didn’t agree with most of the things being taught.  If you’d notice, I am still at odds with the same people I was at odds with while I was a hyperpreterist.  This should tell you something Dr. Talbot, I mean if you took the time (more than 6 months) to really look at the issues.  I left the hyperpreterist movement in part due to the very same people with whom I still confront.  So, no my “attitude” would not have changed because the same issues are there — arrogant men like Sam Frost, dishonest men like Virgil Vaduva.  Why would my behavior change toward men like that?  They were egotists and dishonest while I was a hyperpreterist and they remain so.

DR. TALBOT:
Your sinful behavior is always justified by your belief that you can behave in any way that pleases you as long as you are opposing heretics or in my case, a true presuppositionalist.

RODERICK:
Sinful behavior?  I think you need to be specific Dr. Talbot.  How am I being sinful?  And if I am, why aren’t you coming to me privately first?  I thought you were a pastor?  This is amazing.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick, your are a ‘pragmatist’ on this issue. Let one person do something different than what you think is the “better way” and they are compromisers, because they do not listen to Roderick. Roderick, you just do not get it, do you? But, then again, the statement that my ‘tactics’ is like the hyperpreterists is just another ad hom. Sorry, but if that is your best argument, it is no argument at all. And from here in this is what I expect I will find over and over again.

RODERICK:
Wrong again.  I have worked with many who have a different approach on the refuting hyperpreterism.  Why then do you think after 2 years in I’m having issues with YOUR approach?  Well, maybe it is because you are 6 months in and think you’re going to win the day by doing what?  Offering the hyperpreterists a “new” alternative you are calling, “Realized Preterism”?  They win the day then.  Why?  because I would agree with them that if you get to present some new form of eschatological understanding, then why can’t they?  Before you came on the scene, the thing that was constant, was that we all were telling the hyperpreterists that historic Christian eschatology on the basics has been united.  We told them that there is no reason to create any new alternative.  Then here you come along and compromise — yes compromise right into the hyperpreterist premise — as if we need some new eschatological model.  Further, you blur the lines between orthodoxy and heresy.  That’s not coming from me alone, but from your own student, Sam Frost. If you think you will only find no argument from me, why continue?  Why have you written this verbose diatribe which looks rather that you are trying to save face?  Why not just write me off and be done with it?  Could it be pride?  Could it be that the good Dr. who is oh-so gracious wants to destroy this supposed little “irrational” nobody?  How presidential of you.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “Before we begin, I’d like Dr. Talbot to consider some things, perhaps personally concede them to himself.

Dr. Talbot responds: Why not out loud, because I have no problem answering them.

Roderick states: “1. Even though he is a seminary president, a subordinate may be able to at times correct him.”

Just anther fallacy by Roderick. You see the question is loaded, if I say “yes,” then Roderick assumes you will conclude he was right. If I say “no” then I am made out to be an ‘egotistical’ individual. Nice try! Here is an example of the same “tactic” being used by Roderick. “Roderick are you still beating your wife.” Yes, or no! You see, some questions are meant to trap an individual.

RODERICK:
Yet I MUST answer you or I am accused of not being able to answer you.  I simply ask you to privately consider even you can be wrong and somehow it is a “trap”?  Aren’t you the one who admitted to me on the phone a few times that you have had to stop debating in some forums because as you admitted, it became a “pride thing” with you — where your motivation was simply to win the debate and destory the opponent?  I think you have slipped into this motivation again, why else would you continue when already you were done with me a few comments back?

DR. TALBOT:
Now Roderick, let me tell you something. I have never claimed to be a scholar, a theologian, a philosopher. I have been given such acknowledgements and it is very kind, but I don’t claim such titles. However, I am a student of theology, church history, philosophy, law, education and pastoral counseling. Because I do study these issues, develop and educate students, I am ‘respected.’ I help people with many things, material, spiritual, etc. My subordinates are ‘respectful’ to me. Roderick, even when Mr. Frost was a student, as a ‘subordinate’ he was always kind and respectful. Even when I disagreed with him, while a student, he never acted the way you have. Oh, yes, I am sure I have my detractors. But most of them are still respectful.

RODERICK:
So?  What does this have to do with anything?  It is merely ANOTHER example of your need for people to answer you (interact with you) on your terms.  Whatever you don’t find “acceptable” isn’t an answer/interaction.  I originally DID respect you, but the more I interact with you, the less I respect you — that doesn’t change the veracity of my comments.  I’m sorry that perhaps you have become accustomed to everyone bowing down to you and your status.  I am not beholden to you.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: 2. “Clarkianism”, for whatever devotion Dr. Talbot contributes to it, is NOT the traditional Christian apologetic/epistemology. What Dr. Gordon Clark was advocating was NOT well-received by the bulk of Reformed Christianity. This does NOT however speak to its correctness or error. Only that I would like Dr. Talbot to please stop acting like a person is not Reformed unless they hold to some form of Clarkianism. Thank you.

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, first, show me where I have ever said that anyone was not reformed because of their apologetics? This is a lie! I have over 350 students in the seminary, they all hold to one of three major forms of apologetics? Do you know what those there system are even called? Can you explicate their meanings to me?

RODERICK:
I didn’t say you said people were not Reformed because of their apologetic – I said you are ACTING like it.  Please read more carefully.  You keep doing this.  As this is simply an interaction with you, I will forego your little one-upman comments about “explicating”.  Let’s stay focused shall we? 

DR. TALBOT:
Now Roderick states that he is a “classical presuppositionalist” which is rather funny, because no presuppositionalist uses that type of terminology “classical”, at least not about “presuppositionalism.” It is a term used for “Classical Apologetics” to designate the rational/evidential view of apologetics, such, Dr. R.C. Sproul and St. Thomas. Actually, the majority of Reformed theologians were philosophically either “Classical Apologists” or “Common Sense Realist” as it relates to the “Princeton Tradition.” You really do not know what you are talking about! You “humiliate” your self with errant statements like this. Thomistic theories were held among most the Westminster Divines. Ouch!

RODERICK:
I will grant you this, and because a mutual friend pointed it out – when I used the phrase “classic presuppositionalist” I am not speaking of any specific school of theology.  For instance, some people suppose VanTil is the father of Presuppositionalism, however that is not to say there wasn’t presuppositionalism before VanTil. It is like a person using the label Calvinisti and you trying to come back and say they aren’t Calvinists unless they hold to XYZ and that they “do not know” what they are talking about unless they use all your labels.  I agree, I was imprecise.  I do however contend that I, like Calvin and others hold to the proposition/presupposition that God exists and is sovereign, that man is “natively endowed” as B.B. Warfield put it to have an awareness of God.  Of course, those who continue in pagan religions will only be freed from their erroneous position, by opening up the Word of God to them, as Paul did when he explained to the Athenians (Acts 17) that the “god” that they acknowledged but did not know can be known, and that He is the one and only God, and His “invisible attributes” (Rom 1:20) are made clearer by the reading of the Bible and the opening of ones eyes by the Holy Spirit.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick’s point is this, my first principle is that the Bible is our point of beginning. That he says is not the “classical” presuppositional position. Roderick, I warned you not to embarrass your self. But you would not listen, and I haven’t even gotten my paper on Calvin finished for publication.

RODERICK:
Again, I believe your entire motivation as you admitted on the phone has been a past plague with you, is to attempt to “embarrass” me.  Funny since you boast of all your knowledge of the proper labels.  It would seem I wouldn’t be worth your time, certainly not a two-part reply as long as this. You should have dimissed me with a wave of your hand, or pitied me since I’m supposedly such a poor an inable soul.

DR. TALBOT:
Traditionally, “presuppositonal apologetics” is traced back to Calvin (some might argue Augustine). Now what we need is to determine what the historic “presuppositionalists” held to as the source of their first principles that are essential to theology and apologetics, that is, their primary point of beginning.

RODERICK:
Here we go, the non-scholar scholar is going to “explicate”.  What is interesting is when someone starts off by admitting, “some might argue”, it should tell the reader that the person’s view is just that, his personal view up for debate.  I ALREADY showed what Calvin believed was the starting point, and it was that God exists and is sovereign, that people are “natively endowed” with this understanding.

DR. TALBOT:
Let me indulge the reader first because Roderick had written previously: “I am a presupppositionalist & my presupposed starting point is that God is Sovereign & carries out His plans effectively. Any other starting point, I find always fails. When a person claims their starting point is the Bible — as noble as that sounds, I then must ask them what Bible? How do they know the one we have is accurate? Then how do they know their interpretation is accurate. See how it keeps coming back to God’s Sovereign ability to maintain truth?” (Why I Appeal to ‘Historic Christianity’ Filed Under (Roderick’s Posts, history, hyperpreterism, preterism, terminology, worldview) by Roderick_E on 09-07-2009 ) Now what makes this most “confusing” is that Roderick turns around and says in the same article: “The Bible is our prime source.” What you are witnessing is a person who says two different things about the same thing.

RODERICK:
And you call yourself Reformed?  When God calls people to repent and believe YET in John 6:65 it says no one can believe unless God grants them to believe, is this also “confusing” to you Dr. Talbot?  Is it “two different things about the same thing”?  When I say, “The Bible is our prime source” maybe you should take a look at the pronoun.  Who is “our”?  It is the Christian.  As a Christian, I no longer rely on the simple, “God exists and is sovereign” except as my overaching premise.  If God is not sovereign, in complete control, then perhaps the Bible itself is flawed and thus it would be useless.  I keep explaining this to you but you are dead set on being a Clarkian.  So be it.

DR. TALBOT:
In logic it is called the violation of the law of non-contradiction. A cannot be A and non A at the same time. Either, our first principle or presupposition is “the Bible is the Word of God written” which is therefore our “source” or it is “propositions” – first principle proposition is – “God is Sovereign.” Remember this question Roderick. From what did your derive that proposition that “God is Sovereign.” A presuppositionalist argues that their point of beginning needs no justificationi. However, you turn around and say “The Bible is our prime source.” The latter statement is my first principle stated exactly! Now NO Christian apologetist that I have read, and in 34 years, I have read many, many, more than you have, not one to-date has stated that “God is Sovereign” as the first principle. Show me one that makes that claim! “God is Sovereign” as the first principle.” Don’t say it is so, show me. Show me! Hey, where are those citations?

RODERICK:
Again, let Dr. Talbot explain how man is responsible and yet God is sovereign.  Let him put that in his little logi-o-matic and come out with an answer.  I ALREADY showed you where Calvin and B.B.Warfield hold to the first principle that humans are “natively endowed” with an awareness of God, by nature God is not man.  I’m sorry you’re having so much trouble with this Dr. Talbot, perhaps get out of therom world for a while and get out into the world where people actually apply and test those theroms.

DR. TALBOT:
Now let me get back to my point about presuppositionalists. What is their point of beginning? What is the basis for their theological method:

Calvin (again is say some might claim Augustine (but he was more of a early classical rationalist), was the chief developer of this modern system that believes that our knowledge of God, knowledge that is not perverted by sin (innate and creational) must come from the Bible (this differed greatly from the medieval scholastics). That is the basic presupposition for our true and sure knowledge of God? The Bible! All other theories apart from Scripture Calvin will maintain, leads men to false gods (the Calvin paper has many of Calvin’s statements like this).

“For if we reflect how prone the human mind is to lapse into forgetfulness of God, how readily inclined to every kind of error, how bent every now and then on devising new and fictitious religions, it will be easy to understand how necessary it was to make such a depository of doctrine as would secure it from either perishing by the neglect, vanishing away amid the errors, or being corrupted by the presumptuous audacity of men. It being thus manifest that God, foreseeing the inefficiency of his image imprinted on the fair form of the universe, has given the assistance of his Word to all whom he has ever been pleased to instruct effectually, we, too, must pursue this straight path, if we aspire in earnest to a genuine contemplation of God; — we must go, I say, to the Word, where the character of God, drawn from his works is described accurately and to the life; these works being estimated, not by our depraved judgment, but by the standard of eternal truth.” (Institutes Vol. I, Chapter 6, Section 1).

RODERICK:
This is funny.  I quoted Calvin AND B.B. Warfield showing clearly they advocate as does Rom 1:20 that God is known to humanity, innately.  Yet here comes Dr. Talbot quote mining to find something from Calvin that he thinks will refute Calvin.  The problem is, I don’t disagree with Calvin here and Calvin doesn’t disagree with Calvin.  Of course if all we had was the innate awareness of God and nothing else, “how readily induced to every kind of error” would we be.  No one is arguing that.  Of course there is “inefficiency of” God’s “image imprinted on the fair form of the universe” — BUT, it IS IMPRINTED there as Calvin so states.  Dr. Talbot wants to ignore this.

DR. TALBOT:
Remember Roderick said: “I then must ask them what Bible? How do they know the one we have is accurate?” Well Calvin answers Roderick’s objection: Calvin states:

“There is nothing repugnant here to what was lately said, (chap. 7) that we have no great certainty of the word itself, until it be confirmed by the testimony of the Spirit. For the Lord has so knit together the certainty of his word and his Spirit, that our minds are duly imbued with reverence for the word when the Spirit shining upon it enables us there to behold the face of God; and, on the other hand, we embrace the Spirit with no danger of delusion when we recognize him in his image, that is, in his word.” (Institutes Vol. I, Chapter 9, Section 3).

RODERICK:
What in the world?  Dr. Talbot really thinks that quote supports his Clarkian views? Calvin uses pronouns too Dr. Talbot.  You might want to pay closer attention to the words “our”, “us”, and “we”.  Of course Scripture is confirmed, the certainty of His word and His Spirit.  I never said it wasn’t.  You are arguing against something I never said.  You seem to be once again debating for debating sake.

DR. TALBOT:
Can you guess who also holds to Calvin’s view? Here is Calvin’s legacy concerning the proper ‘presupposition’ for Reformed theology and apologetics. You of course knew I would begin with Clark, but let me introduce you to the other apologetists who agree with Calvin, and, by the way, agreed with Dr. Clark.

RODERICK:
See, I knew your whole reason for even interacting with my initial article was for this goal, to show your devotion to Clarkianism and to “introduce” it where ever you can.  Again, Sam Frost is your student indeed.  I’ve seen you in him and him in you as I’ve become more aquainted with you.

DR. TALBOT:
Dr. Gordon Clark states:

“The first principle cannot be demonstrated because there is nothing prior from which to deduce it. Call it presuppositionalism, call it fideism, names do not matter. But I know no better presupposition than “the Bible alone, and the Bible in its entirety, is the Word of God written, and therefore inerrant in the autographs.” (Against the World, pgs. 192-193)

RODERICK:
An assertion proves nothing.  What is interesting is as I said, let’s say you start with the Bible, but guess what?  Romans 1:20 tells you my presupposition is the correct one:

For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse (Rom 1:20)

DR. TALBOT:
Now just where does Dr. Cornelius Van Til begin his presuppositional method? Dr. GREG BAHNSEN, student of Dr. Van Til, wrote the following article entitled “Van Til’s “Presuppositionalism”

“In the words of 1 Peter 3:15, the personal prerequisite for offering a reasoned defense of the Christian faith is this: “set apart Christ as Lord in your hearts.” Christ must be the ultimate authority over our philosophy, our reasoning, and our argumentation — not just at the end, but at the beginning, of the apologetical endeavor. If we are to “cast down reasonings and every high thing exalted against the knowledge of God,” said Paul, then we must “bring every thought captive to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5.) An ultimate commitment to Christ covers the entire range of human activity, including every aspect of intellectual endeavor. To reason in a way which does not recognize this is to transgress the first and great commandment: “You shall love the Lord your God with… all your mind” (Matthew 22:37). In light of this, our thoughts about apologetic method should be controlled by the word of Jesus Christ, not merely our apologetic conclusions. Very simply, if the apologist is to rid himself of profane audacity, his faith in the greatness of divine wisdom must be championed by means of a procedure which itself honors the same wisdom. After all, in Christ “all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are deposited” (Colossians 2:3), no exception being made for the knowledge by which the Christian defends the knowledge of Christ. This means the apologist must presuppose the truth of God’s word from start to finish in his apologetic witness. A “presupposition” is an elementary assumption in one’s reasoning or in the process by which opinions are formed. Penpoint Vol. VI:1 (January, 1995)

RODERICK:
Dr. Talbot, do you know what a pronoun is?  Do you see the use of “our” all through?  Of course we Christians “must presuppose the truth of God’s word from start to finish in our apologetic witness”, but that is not the issue now is it?  Or maybe you still don’t understand.  To say, “Lord” or to say “God” implies what?  I challenge you to define what the Bible is WITHOUT the use of the words or descriptors God, Lord, and so forth.  As you can see, there must FIRST be an acknowledgement of God, Lord (Lord indicating at least some amount of control over things).  Quoting all these men as if they are refuting what I have been saying is shortsighted.

DR. TALBOT:
Dr. JOHN FRAME as student of Dr. Van Til and a supporter of his apologetic method stated in a position paper entitled: PRESUPPOSITIONAL APOLOGETICS: AN INTRODUCTION :Part 1 of 2:” Introduction and Creation.”

“In defending the Christian faith, the most important question before us is “What sort of defense will best glorify our God (cf. 1 Cor. 10:31)?” God forbid that in seeking to defend the faith before others we should in that very act compromise it. The so-called “presuppositional” school of apologetics is concerned above all with answering this question. Of course, there are other questions in apologetics which, although of less ultimate importance, also deserve answers. Presuppositionalists have discussed those too. But in view of our space limitation, and in order to do justice to the main thrust of presuppositionalism, I must focus our attention on this most important question and then as space permits relate some other issues to this one. Among all the sources of divine revelation (including nature, history, human beings in God’s image), Scripture plays a central role. Indeed, though the point cannot be argued in detail here, my view is that Scripture is the supremely authoritative, inerrant Word of God, the divinely authored, written constitution of the church of Jesus Christ. Scripture is therefore the foundational authority for all of human life including apologetics. As the ultimate authority, the very Word of God, it provides the foundational justifications for all our reasoning, without itself being subject to prior justification. … Once we have made the distinction between God’s Word and the “imaginations of our own hearts,” God calls us to live according to the former. God’s Word is true (therefore dependable), though every human authority may lie (Rom. 3:4). If we adopt the Word of God as our ultimate commitment, our ultimate standard, our ultimate criterion of truth and falsity, God’s Word then becomes our “presupposition.” That is to say, since we use it to evaluate all other beliefs, we must regard it as more certain than any other beliefs” (IIIM Magazine, Volume 1, Number 8, April 19 to April 25, 1999).

RODERICK:
Yes yes, clap-clap-clap Dr. Talbot, you sure can quote.  You are sooooo smart.  The problem is, not one quote you have provided has countered what I’ve said.  I am not an evidentialist. You won’t see me trying to convince people of the God of the Bible by science, by philosophy, by crafty devised tales. (Are you listening Jason Bradfield?)  I do as Paul did, acknowledge and point out that people ALREADY have an awareness of God and then I declare to them who that God is:

Then Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said, “Men of Athens, I perceive that in all things you are very religious; 23 for as I was passing through and considering the objects of your worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO THE UNKNOWN GOD.  Therefore, the One whom you worship without knowing, Him I proclaim to you: God, who made the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands. (Acts 17:22-24)

The way you tell it Dr. Talbot, Paul should have unfurled a scroll of the O.T. and had the Athenians first submit to the fact that the Bible is the Word of God Written.  Of course it is, but God is, I AM.  The Existing One.  And Paul proclaimed to them the sovereignty of God, the One and Only God, the Lord of heaven and earth who made the world and everthing in it.  You are trying to convince me it is wrong to proclaim what Paul proclaimed.  I will not abide no matter how many men you erroneously think support your Clarkianism.

DR. TALBOT:
DR. CORNELIUS VAN TIL himself wrote:

“I think there is a better and more truly biblical way of reasoning with and winning unbelievers than the Romanist Arminian method permits. To begin with then I take what the Bible says about God and his relation to the universe as unquestionably true on its own authority. The Bible requires men to believe that he exists apart from and above the world and that he by his plan controls whatever takes place in the world. Everything in the created universe therefore displays the fact that it is controlled by God, that it is what it is by virtue of the place that it occupies in the plan of God.” “The only ‘proof’ of the Christian position is that unless its truth is presupposed there is no possibility of ‘proving’ anything at all.” What the Christian sets forth as the Bible’s worldview – as authoritatively revealed by God – is the indispensable foundation for proof itself – for the intelligibility of reason and experience, the ability to make sense of knowing anything whatsoever.” (The Bible Today, 42, no. 9 (June-Sept., 1949):278-290).

Now here is my point. Clark, Van Til, Bahnsen, and Frame all say that the presupposition must be the Bible. The Word of God as self-authenticating, which is proof itself as Dr. Van Til and Dr. Clark both held, as did Dr. John Calvin. Why must we ‘confessionalists’ believe this? On the authority that the Bible alone is our ‘supreme authority’ just as stated in the Westminster Confession of Faith, Chapter 1.

RODERICK:
Were we reading the same quotes?  I didn’t see any of these men say anything remotely like Clark, or at least your perception of Clark.  As a matter of fact, VanTil almost repeats Paul in Acts 17:22-24 word for word, yet you’d have us believe we are to ignore the fact that humanity has an innate awareness.  VanTil even almost uses my exact reasoning when he says: “Everything in the created universe therefore displays the fact that it is controlled by God” – hence, God is sovereign.  What in the world are you reading Dr. Talbot that you think these men aren’t saying what I’m saying?

DR. TALBOT:
Well, I thought that this was interesting.

Roderick states: 3. “Dr. Talbot, by his own actions has been bolstering the resolve of the heretical group called hyperpreterism. These are not my own observations alone, but observations by the hyperpreterists themselves. Samuel Frost, a student of Dr. Talbot has been advocating hyperpreterism for at least 15 years, often crediting Dr. Talbot’s own seminary for giving him the training that Frost has used to conclude hyperpreterism.”

Dr. Talbot responds: “Roderick, man, you are unbelievable! Samuel Frost never said that studying the curriculum at Whitefield Theological Seminary is what made him a Full Preteristi, he said he came to that conclusion apart from the fact the WTS doctrine (well Gentry usually gets the blame) and I think that it is heretical.

RODERICK:
No actually that is inaccurate, Sam has constantly claimed he is employing the things he learned at WTS to conclude his hyperpreterism.  Now, I don’t agree with him.  I think he is distorting what he learned, however he does claim your seminary gave him the tools to conclude hyperpreterism.  It is not for me to correct him on this, but I’d think you’d want to.  Since if someone was going around claiming they adopted say, Mormonism because of the things I was saying, I’d feel responsible to at least point out that the person has distorted what I’ve taught.  You on the other hand did not take responsibly for Frost for the last 10+ years.  I am thankful that maybe you are remedying that now.  I know you think hyperpreterism is heretical. I never said you didn’t.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick, a School can offer only the education, we cannot “program” any student to become “anything.” This is just another ad hom argument! Did Sam Frost get a good education at WTS. We offer a “classically Reformed education.” Our eschatology is taught by Dr. Kenneth Gentry. Are you impugning Dr. Gentry’s Character? We use Dr. Mattison’s writings also, so may I assume your are impugning him as well? I guess we will impugn Calvin, Turretin, The Westminster Divines, Dr. Robert Reymond, etc. since we used their materials, so they are responsible for Hyperpreterism? It’s called a “choice.” You clearly [know] nothing about education!

RODERICK:
Who said you programed Sam?  Again, it is Sam who claims your seminary’s training gave him the tools to conclude hyperpreterism.  I KNOW that is not true, however it is still your obligation to forcibly point out that Frost distorts his training.  That is all I am asking.  Am I asking you to do this with every student that leaves WTS and goes on to teach some error?  No, unless you are directly involved and now that you are directly involved with fighting hyperpreterism, it is your responsibility to point out that every time Sam claims he is using “Reformed” training to conclude his hyperpreterism, he is in reality distorting his training.  Thanks again for belittling me and claiming I don’t know anything about education.  Perhaps, but I do know about taking responsibility.

DR. TALBOT:
Now with such “brilliant” reasoning, that means that every seminary that had a student take an different direction in this theological thinking, a position that is not held by the institution, nevertheless, the institution is some how responsible for the student’s bad choice of theology? That is like saying, the gun makers are responsible for gun owners who mishandle the guns and kill people, because they bought the gun from the company! Do you really think this way?

RODERICK:
Hmmm, let’s keep with your analogy.  Suppose a gun owner goes around killing people, but as they do they boast, “I use this brand of gun because it is designed so well for shooting people.  It’s sight is perfectly suited for aiming at people.  It’s balance and size makes me want to use it to kill people”. Now, obviously the gun company could argue like you and not make any statement, but I can almost bet you, if someone was running around killing people and claiming that they were doing so with a specific brand of gun because it helped them learn how to kill people and is well-suited for killing people, the gun company would make certain people realized the killer was using the gun for a purpose the company did not intend.  How is that for “brilliant” reasoning or do you still think you don’t owe it to Christians to repudiate Frost and his distortion of his schooling?  After all, Frost isn’t some student you lost contact with.  You have stayed in close contact with him and have known he is the “leader” within the hyperpreterist movement and that he claims to represent “Reformed” theology.  Again, I thank you for the times you have shown Frost is not really Reformed, but I’d urge you to keep pointing out that Frost distorts his schooling and brings shame to WTS when he dares mention it as giving him the tools to conclude hyperpreterism.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “In all that time, until this year, Dr. Talbot, to my knowledge has not publicly done anything to discourage and repudiate Frost’s use of his training as an association to heresy.”

Dr. Talbot responds: “This is almost too funny to answer, but why not. There is nothing more silly than watching a fellow point a gun at his own head that threaten to shoot you. Roderick. Until last year, I did not know you until I got that “threaten” letter about “exposing WTS” because of Samuel Frost’s hyperpreterism.

RODERICK:
Let me stop you here Dr. Talbot because THIS ISSUE has been a major, major contetion between you and I. When I wrote WTS a letter, I did not “threaten” you with anything.  As a matter of fact, allow me to requote the letter:

Hello,

I wanted to ask you, your board & your staff, what you would think of someone who claimed these 3 things:

#1 That Jesus came back once & for all in the year AD70
#2 That the resurrection of the believers happened in the year AD70.
#3 That the judgment of the wicked & righteous happened in the year AD70.

Would you consider such doctrine within the realm of any kind of Christianity or do you think it is so beyond what Christianity has taught & that it is in fact a “contrary doctrine”?

And then what would you think if someone was going around telling people they came to these 3 “doctrines” by following the principles that Whitefield Theological Seminary taught them?

Further, would you allow a person who advocates the 3 beliefs listed above to basically design your seminary’s “Hebrew program”?

Thanks ahead of time for your reply.
Roderick

Do you see anything in there “threatening”????  Now, when you turned my private email over to Sam Frost and you didn’t even have the “Christian” courtesy to reply to me but instead shared my private email with a heretic (notice I don’t even mention Sam, how’d you know who I was talking about???), but when you did this, yes I found it to be odd for a “Christian” institution and so I began writing your board and peers to ask them if they realized you may have a hyperpreterist helping develop your programs.  You call it a threat, I call it Christian accountability. Are you accountable to the wider Christian community? Why didn’t you simply answer my questions?  Any “rational” person would have simply answered.  Further, why did you allow Sam to post my private email to you on his site claiming you told him to respond to it???  What was I to think???

DR. TALBOT:
You did not know me and if you hadn’t mentioned Samuel’s name, I would not even known who you were! Your knowledge about me who you did not know! Are you claiming some sort of “omniscience” here?

RODERICK:
Wait, I could accuse you of LYING and “sinful behavior” because as the letter clearly shows, I DIDN’T mention Samuel’s name, yet you immediately forwarded my email to him.  See, Dr. Talbot this is the reason I haven’t really trusted you even from the beginning. Something just wasn’t right with the way you handled that situation and STILL you aren’t being honest.

DR. TALBOT:
WTS is now in its 29th year. You did not even know anything about WTS or me, or you would not have written the letter asking if I knew Samuel Frost was using WTS and me as a means to (as you call it) “promote” his views. If you knew that I “hadn’t said anything to date” (which is just a lie!), you would have had no reason to write that letter!

RODERICK:
Again, did you see any mention of me asking about Samuel Frost?  Be honest Dr. Talbot.  I knew you hadn’t said anything to date in any arena where it would mean something to the struggle against hyperpreterism.  Please show me where you have PUBLICLY said something against Sam’s using WTS as a prop to make himself look legitimate, show me where you said something, where we who are fighting against hyperpreterism and the hyperprets themselves would have seen it.  Show me prior to my writing you and I’ll stand corrected.

DR. TALBOT:
Further, there are federal laws that protect students while engaged in education and we are bound to them and must handle every issue very carefully. When Samuel Frost said that you and he were old “enemies” in a battle over Preterism, that was the only thing I knew about you.

RODERICK:
I appreciate your delicate situation with the Federal Laws but it doesn’t seem to be stopping you with your latest interactions with Frost.  How long has he no longer been engaged/enrolled in WTS?  To my understanding he is still enrolled and working on degrees.  Again, why are you telling me about you talking to Samuel Frost and him telling you we were “old enemies”?  Why didn’t you just write me back since I didn’t even mention Sam?  You obviously were aware that Sam was a hyperpreterist or you wouldn’t have determined that the email was about him.  So this makes it even more egregious.  It looks like you were letting it lie low but now that someone wrote you about it, you’d have to take action.  And from the looks of how you handled it, it looks like you resented that you had to do something.  If you wanted to know something about me, why not simply email me back?  That would have been the “logical” thing to do.

DR. TALBOT:
I called Dr. Gentry, he nothing about you except that you were a “hyperpreterist,” (guess news travels slow) and that I should stay away from you because you had a bad reputation. You were not a part of my life, never phoned, never met in person, never a letter, not an e-mail, nothing! Yet you make this ridiculous statement that I had not done anything “public” (which begs a question – does that mean that everyone who knows anything about Hyperpreterism must go public and battle it or them, or they are guilty as well?) against Mr. Frost. Truth is, you know nothing about those 28 years.

RODERICK:
All of that and you didn’t think, “Hmmm, let me email this fellow back”, instead you go on a mission asking a heretic and then asking Dr. Gentry who as you found out was 2 years behind the times.  The statement about you not doing anything public still stands.  You’re right, as it relates to what you’ve done about hyperpreterism those 28 years and about the fact that a hyperpreterist leader was going around claiming WTS gave him the training to conclude hyperpreterism, and the fact that Sam was claiming WTS was letting him, a heretic develop its programs — you’re right, I didn’t know what to believe — THAT IS THE REASON I WROTE TO ASK YOU.  Unlike you, I didn’t go to everyone and their brother asking them about WTS, I asked you.  I had hoped you would have had the common courtesy to reply but instead here we are 6 months later at this situation.

DR. TALBOT:
When I told you that WTS held to the Westminster Standards and that Hyperpreterism was outside the confession, so everyone knows what we believe, just read it, you said that was not good enough. I wrote and said in an e-mail, As President of WTS, we do not teach or hold to Hyperpreterism, You said that was not good enough. It had to come from the Board. That is when I ended my conversations with you. For that I am thankful, because Dee Dee Warren wrote a very kind and polite e-mail and that began new friendship.

RODERICK:
Well since Sam ALSO claims to hold to the WCF and many other confessions, I wanted further clarification, plus my question wasn’t “Does WTS hold to the WCF?” or even what WTS believes or teaches, It was, do you allow a hyperpreterist to develop your programs? That’s the reason it wasn’t good enough.  And the reason I followed up writing the Board is for two reasons; 1) At that point I no longer trusted you.  You forwarded my email to Sam and Sam said you told him to deal with it.  2) I was under the impression that even the president of a seminary was accountable to someone and I wanted to see what your peers thought since you weren’t forth coming.  What “conversations” were you having with me???  That was the problem, you weren’t, you were asking everyone else about me (as you admit) but didn’t interact with me on my original question. I’m glad you are friends with Dee Dee too, but that is besides the point.

DR. TALBOT:
Further, I have two graduates who have done more to battle hyperpreterism (Gentry and Mathison) than you will do in a life time!

RODERICK:
No arrogance there from you Dr. Talbot. Why so defensive??  If you would have simply answered my question you wouldn’t have needed to get all worked up like this. Also, need I remind you that you told me you don’t think WSTTB is really a good refutation of hyperpreterism????

DR. TALBOT:
Eschatology is not what I am primarily trained in; it is Philosophy, education, theology (some eschatology of course), law, church history, and pastoral counseling.

RODERICK:
Ok, then why are you now putting yourself forward as some sort of champion against hyperpreterism, just 6 months in?  Why are you offering people an alternative called “Realized Preterism”?  Even the hyperpreterists see this as a victory, because if you can make up some new eschatology other than the historic Christian eschatology, then why can’t they?  Who are you to tell them they are wrong and your new verison is right?  I mean, if  according to your tacit admission, there hasn’t been any continuity in eschatology, then maybe the hyperpreterists have a point when they claim they are merely trying to systematized eschatology.  Plus remember when you were going to give me a scholarship to WTS you said I could forego the eschatology parts because you were satisfied that I knew enough about it, but now you want to act like I’m an irrational imbicile???  What has changed except that you have suddenly forgotten you are not “primarily trained in eschatology” and instead have put yourself forward as some great savior for hyperpreterists?

DR. TALBOT:
You don’t think that Dr. Gentry and Dr. Mathison were doing a good enough job? That I need to drop my pastoral duties, seminary duties, homeschooling duties, counseling duties, conference duties, I have set on 25 different boards of directors, protested for years at abortion clinics and rallies. Personally spent ten years lobbying the State of Florida over the rights of parents to educate their children at home, and for colleges to be free from state entanglement. I taught in Christian Schools, held adjunct professorships, was averaging 6 to 10 conferences a year (many on civil issues as well as theology and apologetics). I Moderated both our general assembly (4 years) and Presbytery (9 years), held the chair for credentials committee and Book of Church Order for 15years. Worked in Drug rehab as a counselor for teenagers. I currently set on a State Board which oversees millions of dollars (tax money) to ensure it is not being wasted. I could list much more, but I think I have made my point. You don’t know me, and you have not walked in my shoes. Your battle has been on a computer. I am doing the work of God in the real world! Now if I need witnesses, I can give them to you. Dr. Gentry, Dr. Crampton, Dr. Kayser, Dr. Carl Bogue, Rev. Dick Jones, (how many do you want?) I have lots more to call upon! This is another fallacy of yours!

RODERICK:
Thanks for belittling me again Dr. Talbot.  How “pastoral” of you. Actually, all I really wanted is a simple email response back from you and instead you took time out from all those things you mention (boast about??) to go to Sam Frost about me.  Go to Dr. Gentry about me.  Why didn’t you just answer my question?  Again, it looks more like you resented having me question if WTS is letting Frost develop programs.  The “fallacy” is you think you don’t have to answer for the fact Sam has been using WTS’ name for the last 10 years to give himself legitimacy.  This has nothing to do with Gentry or Mathison Again from what you told me, you don’t think they have done a good job.  Your actions of late even bear that out, as neither Gentry or Mathison dared to supplement and offer people some personalized eschatology like “Realized Preterism”.  As a matter of fact, in WSTTB:

Gentry notes that the historical and creedal cases are the first word against the heresy (pg 2).

I’d say I’ve been following his model against the heresy of hyperpreterism pretty closely. What method are you using?

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “You can read Frost’s recent statements where he believes Dr. Talbot has almost single-handedly given a “major victory” to the hyperpreterist cause due to Dr. Talbot’s epistemology and his blurring the lines between what is and isn’t heretical.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, did you read these articles? Samuel Frost did not say that about me. Both articles are about Dr. Kelly Birks IBD position over against CBV. He said it took place on Preterism Debate, but lets look at the quote that includes TE: Samuel Frost states:

“Recently, I came across a shocking statement from Dr. Kelly Birks, which must be quoted in full, given by him on Larry Siegle’s Preterism Debate site (TE stands for Theology Explains, a website created by Sharon Nichols, but approved by Dr. Talbot and a host of other Reformed scholars and pastors (mostly associated with Whitefield Theological Seminary)). What I would like the reader here to note is how Birks “gets around” the charge of heresy for his Immortal Body at Death view, which basically means, that the soul, instead of resuming the body with which it is now clothed, will obtain a new and different body upon death. If Birks’ view gets a stamp of approval from the gentlemen representing Theology Explains, then all of the charges against us on matters of “acceptible orthodoxy” is, in one fell swoop, dismissed.”

RODERICK:
Dr. Talbot, it was you accepting Birks as within the pale of orthodoxy.  Again, my statement was: “You can read Frost’s recent statements where he believes Dr. Talbot has almost single-handedly given a “major victory” to the hyperpreterist cause due to Dr. Talbot’s epistemology and his blurring the lines between what is and isn’t heretical.”  Nobody before you was doing anything like this except perhaps Gary DeMar as he still does and James Jordan did once, ony when pressured.  So, yes the hyperpreterists do see you giving them a victory or as Sam says: “all of the charges against us on matters of “acceptible orthodoxy” is, in one fell swoop, [should be] dismissed.”  Yet you want to deflect it as if I’ve done something against you.

DR. TALBOT:
First Roderick, this is a logical fallacy by Sam (you didn’t know this, WOW)

RODERICK:
Is everything people say and do a “logical fallacy” to you Dr. Talbot unless it agrees with you?  Are you the only “logical” one alive?  I’m beginning to think so here.

DR. TALBOT:
Now Roderick, Samuel says “If Birks” gets a “stamp of approval” from the gentlemen representing Theology Explains.” Well, first this is not what you stated. You misrepresented the statement! It is called a hyperbole, that is, an exaggerated statement! This is because I permitted Dr. Birks to become a member of TE and for a reason. Now Samuel, Larry, and few others wanted to join TE, but we said no. Needless to say they were not too happy. This is their tactic to try to force me to put Dr. Birks out! Nice try Sam! But you Roderick, who knows so much about the “tactics” of the Hyperpreterists didn’t see that tactical move by them? Now if you say you did, then you are being disingenuous to use their “tactic” (what, Roderick is using their tactics?) against me?

RODERICK:
Of course I see their tactic, and as for me using it “against you”, again like when I first emailed you, the only thing I asked about Birks is if you are working on having him publicly repudiate his hyperpreterism. I never asked you to put him out.  You are being dishonest here.  Can I say that even to a seminary president or does your station require I allow you to be dishonest?

DR. TALBOT:
However, if you did not see that, then what you stated below is even lower than the Hyperpreterist and you walked right into it! Let’s take a close look! Oh, by the way, neither I, nor do the TE or Seminary professors hold or approve of the IBD position. Dr. Birks knows that as well. So you ask: “What are you doing with Dr. Birks at TE? Well I could ask the same question about what is he doing at Pretblog! But here is the answer if you must know – ITS NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS!

RODERICK:
And therein lies the problem.  You are arrogant and think no one has a right to ask you anything in regards to what you are doing to damage the Christian community.  You talk about “respect”.  People have been dealing with hyperpreterists for 10-15 years before you lifted a public finger.  We know the history of these people.  We have their documented statements about various beliefs.  And yet you arrogantly come in the middle of all of this, offering some contrived personal new eschatology and then dare to tell people when they ask you what’s going on, that is “NONE OF OUR BUSINESS”???  Isn’t that how we got into this situation in the first place?  I wrote a supposed Christian seminary to ask if they approve of a hyperpreterist developing their programs and without actually saying it, your actions were the same as these words; “none of your business”.  Well, I don’t know what kind of Christianity you are practicing Dr. Talbot, but last I knew, the Church was community of saints.  It is ALL of our Christians business.  Your words are self-centered and arrogant to say the least.

DR. TALBOT:
I don’t answer to you! Actually, I do answer to Sharon, she owns the site (after this issue, I am in the dog house because I promised not to make this a debate site). We are opening the other one back up and it will be FANTASTIC!

RODERICK:
It appears you really don’t answer to anyone.  The only thing I’ve seen from you in regards to these various sites is that you more or less hiding behind the skirts of women.  You did this when you would post anonymously on PretBlog and you did it again when you were posting as “SuperPreterist” (or whatever anon name it was) over on Sharon’s site.  You then even entered into “ministry” with hyperpreterists when you had Larry and Wanda on as moderators.  Now, it is interesting that you point out that you knew you were going against the rules to TE when you engaged my article in a debate fashion.  Yet Sharon only stopped the comments AFTER your very long and very abrasive two posts — as if to give you the last word. Again, hiding behind the skirts of women.  This is the reason I’m not playing that game anymore.  I am never again being under the moderation of a woman in a theological discussion.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “Dr. Talbot’s interaction with the hyperpreterist movement is a recent development. I’d urge him to take more time to consider the work of people who have been at this longer than he, despite his seminary training. Sometimes, theoretical experience is not the same as practical experience. Thank you.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, you are worse than the Hyperpreterists when it comes to arrogance! You think way to highly of yourself, but ascribe it to others. Sorry, but even the hyperpreterists to my knowledge have not said such a thing to me! This is shameful! You disgrace yourself. I am not humiliating you, you are humiliating yourself. You need to go and ask others who will be truthful with you what they think about your attitude. I could give you a list, but you know most of them.

RODERICK:
Huh? There you go ASSUMING again Dr. Talbot.  Did you write Sam or call others to ask them what I meant?  Here, let me tell you again, “I’d urge you to take more time to consider the work of PEOPLE who have been at this longer” — I’m not talking only about myself.  Go back and read Dr. Gentry statement.  Read Doug Wilson’s statement in WSTTB:

If someone were to maintain that God did not know the location of a particular town in South Dakota, and we were to debate with him, the resultant debate would not be over geography.  In the same way, before we can understand our debates with hyper-preterists, we have to recognize that it is not fundamentally a debate about eschatology at all.  The fundamental question is one of authority.  (pg 256).

You see, as Gentry and Wilson realize, the issue with hyperpreterists isn’t primarily an exegetical issue, where if we just hash out exegesis with them long enough they will see the error of their ways and renounce the heresy — they have authority problems.  They have issues with historic Christianity and the continuity of the community of saints as having been able to maintain the most basic understanding of the original teachings of Christ and the apostles.

Further in WSTTB, we see this:

Gentry opens the book with the strong point that “Christianity is an historical religion” (pg 1).

I’m just asking you to take some time to consider the work of your very own students. Why are you talking about my “attitude”?  And you talk about ad homs — You admitted that eschatology is not your primary training and I’d submit knowledge of the hyperpreterist movement is even less familiar to you.  Or are you so arrogant that you think you have it all figured out in 6 months time?

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “Now, I don’t say these things to Dr. Talbot to “humiliate” him, as seems to be his intention toward me. As a matter of fact I love and want to protect his reputation as much as possible, again the reason I broke off the other discussion was at the urging of my and Dr. Talbot’s mutual friends. But I would ask him to seriously consider the 3 points above.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Again, you assume what I have not said, especially in light of this article. Yes, I am being a little hard on you, but it seems others aren’t willing to take the abuse from you so, I will address this again. You so far have only proven that (1) you lie, (2) you misrepresent statements, (3) you use ad hom arguments, and (4) you are full of yourself. I am not humiliated, not at all! With the kind of love and protection you offer, (I know this is not becoming a man of my stature) I will pass. I have really never had anyone love and protect me in this manner.

RODERICK:
Dr. Talbot, in all due respect that I might have left for you, you have not shown one place where I have “lied”. You have claimed it, asserted it, accused it but not shown any evidence of it.  However, I PROVED you lied when you said I mentioned Sam in my initial letter to you.  Will you repent?  Do seminary presidents repent? Or is repentance merely a “therom” for us lowly “lay-people” that don’t know all the fancy names for every therom under the sun?  Further, you claim, assert, and accuse that I misrepresent statements though you have not shown it.  I am known for my source-linking and contextualizing discussions so that the reader can determine the facts themselves.  I resent your accusations, especially since they are without any basis and sound more like the clamor of Sam Frost than a studied seminary president.  Ad homs?  Really?  Have I been the one belittling you at every turn?  Am I the one insulting your intelligence?  Am I the one talking about all my great accomplishments and making it out as if you are nothing?  I applaud how Christ has used you in your life time, but as I stated early on, can a seminary president ever be rebuffed by a subordinate?  Apparently not without enduring what you have done here.  You claim I am full of myself, but kind sir, how can that be since you many times pointed out how I’m a nothing and know nothing and have done nothing but sit behind a computer and “attack” people.  If my faith was predicated on the love and support of men, I would have renounced the faith after what you have put me through.  I see no pastor in you.  I see a man that likes to put himself above others just to prove he is the superior debater.  If you think you have won, take your bow now.  I’m not certain your peers would be clapping if they have seen your behavior.

You say you have never had anyone love and protect you in this manner — perhaps that is part of the problem, you have been Ken Talbot the seminary president for so long, that you have been immune to the periodic rebuke from a fellow Christian, even one under your station.

2nd and final response to Dr. Kenneth Talbot

EXTREMELY IMPORTANT TO THE FIGHT AGAINST HYPERPRETERISM

What follows is a response to part 2 of Dr. Kenneth Talbot’s interaction with an article I wrote, well actually he didn’t respond to the content of the article at all instead he went on a vendetta to further push his pet topic, Clarkianism.  My hope is that this issue is now over.  I have completely decoupled myself from not only the hyperpreterist movement, but also from the “cause” fighting against it.  They seem to need each other, feed off of each other.  I regret that I even got involved with the “cause” against hyperpreterism, especially now that Dr. Talbot has entered to undo what men like Gentry, Seriah, and Mathison have done.

I’ve tried to add some source links so that the reader can be better apprised of the background of this issue.  This is not a minor squabble, this is a major, major disagreement on the root issue of hyperpreterism and how to respond to it.  Dr. Talbot, a man with about 6 months direct experience with the hyperpreterist movement has decided he is going to come and apply his own “strategy” ignoring all the work that was done before him.   Please read the entire discussion for full context. Located here: http://thekingdomcome.com/talbot_edwards_debate Now on to the interaction. We start with Dr. Talbot once again claiming people don’t answer him unless they give him the answer he wants.

DR. TALBOT:
Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, it was the wrong answer, if you call it an answer at all. The confusion is all yours. The only problem I have is you have many conflicting answers, sometimes they are even my answers, but it is so irrational and poorly stated.

RODERICK:
Here we are again, you claiming an answer is the “wrong” answer doesn’t mean it is.  You further berate me by claiming it wasn’t really an answer.  You are so high-minded and perhaps have spent so much time cooped up behind those seminary walls you have forgotten how to communicate without endnote and footnote.  This is the real world Dr. Talbot.  I wonder since you make so many claims that my answers are irrational and poorly stated, who then is more to be pitied?  The person who is supposedly so “conflicting”, “irrational”, and a “poor” presenter of statements or the person who writes a two-part reply trying to interact with such a person?  I only provide your answers so you might take a moment from your aggrandizments and consider it is really you who are conflicted.  I wish it were not so.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick, I never said you exclude “exegesis.” You really need to read what I said. Roderick, I asked you what you meant when you said “I like to deal first and foremost with the proposition of an argument.” That statement says nothing about “excluding” as you say. However, why would you not “include the exegesis” since they are propositions also. No wonder you are having problems, you cannot read what I am writing.

RODERICK:
To “not include” is a synonym of exclude (see: http://thesaurus.reference.com/browse/exclude ).  I NEVER said I do “not include” exegesis.  If someone uses the word “first” it implies something after, a “second”, possibly “third” and more.  Exegesis is NOT propositional, except perhaps on a micro level.  We are not talking about stringing a bunch a micro propositions together.  I think the problem is you aren’t being honest with what you are saying.  Again “first” implies something after and “not include” is a synonym of “exclude”.  Basic English. It is revealing how you go on in the next paragraph to claim I “took [your question] out of context”.  No, I did not you presented a false issue, claiming I don’t “include” exegesis.  That was wrong.

DR. TALBOT:
Better yet, let me restate my question, because you took it out of context, which really shows that you missed the point. “I like to deal first and foremost with the proposition of an argument.” What method does that invoke? Why would not that method include the “exegesis” which is also propositional, and if, it is a part of the argument of your opponent, your previous statement would require you to do what you say you would prefer not to do? This is irrational because you cannot actually avoid the necessary logical implications. Further, why is the propositions of Scripture considered secondary rather than primary?” No, I did not say, what you said I said. But you did not answer what I asked either.

RODERICK:
Shall I really keep correcting you on this? You repeat your false presentation, asking, “Why would not that method include…”. I never said it doesn’t.  Here’s your bone of contention between your method and the method that people have been using against hyperpreterism before you came riding in on your white horse; Heretics, are unable and not permitted to use the Bible to support their views because by necessity they have to claim God could not maintain basic understanding of truth (if supposedly that truth has been lost or misunderstood all this time), and thus even the Bible could be wrong.  The hyperpreterists saw off the branch they claim to sit on.  What you do is come in and say something akin to, “Hey you heretics, you have every right to handle the Scriptures and I will engage you in your twisted interpretations and pretend it is legitimate”.  Dr. Talbot, what is the overarching “propositions of Scripture” if not an account of an all-powerful, monotheistic God, that decreed a plan from end to beginning, beginning to end? (Is 46:10) You instead are giving validity to heresy by saying something like, “Sure, you can ignore that God is sovereign” and instead you like to engage them like you are playing a game of chess while your opponents are actually playing checkers.  You most certainly did, and repeated it even, say I do “not include” exegesis, which is the same as saying I exclude it.  In the hyperpreterist debate, exegesis when I give it, is not for the hyperpreterists, but for the Christian (see: http://thekingdomcome.com/mt1627_com and http://thekingdomcome.com/christ_cloud_coming).  No amount of “exegesis” will convince the hyperpreterist, after all 2000 years of united exegesis has no effect on their Proverbs 26:12 minds and so who do you think you are with some silver-bullet “strategy”?  Is this why you are trying to synthesize some middle ground between hyperpreterism that you are calling “Realized Preterism”???

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick stated: “I said I start first with the heretic’s proposition.”

Dr. Talbots responds: “Actually you stated two things: “Yes, you are correct — ALL STATEMENTS ARE PROPOSITIONAL — that is exactly the point and why I like to deal first and foremost with the proposition of an argument BEFORE I get into the so-called “evidence/exegesis”. The overarching proposition of historic Christianity is that God is sovereign, in complete control. God has planned and decreed things, not just let them haphazardly unfold for anyone to take up. This is the proposition of almost every Reformer. Do I need to name and cite?” Now Roderick, you have two things confused here and this is just because you lack an education.

RODERICK:
See, there it is again, I ANSWERED you and you ignore it and instead launch into attack from your elitist mindset.  You say “because [I] lack an education”.  Who in the world do you think you are?  I have never seen such a arrogant man in my life, except perhaps your protege, hyperpreterist Sam Frost who also treats people in this manner…even his fellow hyperpreterists who he calls “low-rent” and “wackos”. Frost has learned your style well.

DR. TALBOT:
There is a difference between “testing truth claims” and stating something as a “first principle” which you state as the first principle being “the overarching proposition of historic Christianity is that God is sovereign.” Do you know the difference? However, let me repost my question, because you must have missed the point again! Yes, let me do it again and I will (like you) will put key terms in caps: “What method does that invoke? Why would not that method include the “exegesis” which is also propositional, AND IF, IT IS A PART OF THE ARGUMENT OF YOUR OPPONENT YOUR PREVIOUS STATEMENT WOULD REQUIRE YOU TO DO WHAT YOU SAY YOU WOULD PREFER NOT TO DO? Roderick, if your “opponent” has given an exegetical argument, would that not then “logically” presume that your dealing or responding to his argument include exegetical responses also?

RODERICK:
How many times will you repeat your false accusations? Again, to “not include” is the same as “exclude”.  Where have I ever said exegesis would not be included at some point?  What you are doing is like the poor souls that buy into all this global warming “proposition” and go instead immediately to assuming it is true and trying to pass legislation and “green laws” without even considering whether the proposition of man-made global warming is a valid proposition.  If anyone is closer to an evidentialist, it is you.  Your “evidence” is to ignore what Romans 1:20 says about the “natively endowed” awareness of God and His “Godhead” (sovereignty) and instead you are ready to allow the heretic to sit at the table and pretend he has legitimate interpretations. The problem is, the hyperpreterists’ “exegetical argument” is first and foremost that God has failed to maintain the most basic understanding of truth within the community of saints.  We can’t go farther than that false proposition because any further interaction buys into their false premise as much as it does when people call for “carbon credits” and “cap and trade” while ignoring that man-made global warming is a false premise.

DR. TALBOT:
Now I want to point out that if this is not the case, then everything Paul T [another fellow fighting hyperpreterism] has written is “out the door” because he did it wrong and Paul’s responses are at least seeking to engage the Scriptural argument, and not chant over and over again 2000+ of church history.

RODERICK:
It may have change now, as your influence on the “cause” against hyperpreterism has undid what all of us have been saying and doing, but PaulT in my phone discussions with him and in his articles, always acknowledges that the hyperpreterists’ starting point is a denial of God’s ability to maintain the basic understanding of truth.  You act like I have never uttered an exegetical thing against hyperpreterism in my life.  You are very presumptuous for a man who has only been involved for 6 months, or perhaps it is because you have been taking what your hyperpreterist protege says as truth.  Even so, you see how well PaulT’s engagement is doing.  Bless his soul, but the hyperpreterists’ suffer from Proverbs 26:12 and I remind you again, Doug Wilson in WSTTB pinpoints the problem:

If someone were to maintain that God did not know the location of a particular town in South Dakota, and we were to debate with him, the resultant debate would not be over geography.  In the same way, before we can understand our debates with hyper-preterists, we have to recognize that it is not fundamentally a debate about eschatology at all.  The fundamental question is one of authority. (pg 256).

DR. TALBOT:
Sorry, Yes, I agree [with PaulT’s supposed different approach] and have written that “not because the church said it” but because they came to the same conclusions as a result of their exegesis, to embrace the 4 doctrinal positions commonly known in systematic as “general eschatology” (1) Visible manifestation of Christ, (2) resurrection of the dead, (3) final judgment, and (4) consummation of time or history. But Roderick, it is not that the “Church” has any authority to make any declaration that is binding, except what is written in Scripture. If you have misstated this once, you have misstated it a hundred times! You say you are Reformed Presbyterian, but you seem to know little about the Westminster Confession of Faith and what were the issues during the Reformation.

RODERICK:
Dr. Talbot what you propose is chaos.  If no doctrine is settled, then at any moment some cunning deceiver can come up and claim “God hath not said…” or “God has a hidden truth, but you can you can access” (compare Gen 3:1-7 to Gen 3:22).  Of course we harken to Scripture, but you’d have us restart afresh every generation as if there is no continuity in the community of saints.  God is specific to show a continuity, in how He references Himself as the “God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob” (see: http://www.biblegateway.com/keyword/?search=Abraham%20Isaac%20Jacob ).  God isn’t some individualist’s personal “god” but He is the God of His people, connected in time.  The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob is the SAME God of Acts 17:16-34, as declared to the Athenians as the one and only God, of which they only had a “natively endowed” awareness.  It is one thing to witness to a non-believer by starting at the beginning, but when a person who claims to be a Christian, but is really a heretic comes wanting to ignore that the Church is a community of saints, with passed down “traditions” (2 Thes 2:15), then I will not abide.  If that is your “method”, have at it but I’ll be no part of it.  And so I am not.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “And whether you admit it or not, you actually agree. In a follow up comment you said, and please allow me to make your words bold here as they are very, very important to this entire discussion: “They [hyperpreterists] come with presuppositional dogma that forces them to skew exegetical studies, twist the Scriptures with “bad” hermeneutics, and then with a boldness that boast on the side of arrogance, they assert that they alone have the “key” to the “truth which unlocks the knowledge of God about the whole Bible which has been misinterpreted and everything needs to be tweaked to get it right.” Amen! I guess this discussion is over since you agree that for all their claims at “exegesis” and “hermeneutics”, the FIRST and FOREMOST problem with hyperpreterism (and all heresies, as I state in my original article [on the TE website]), is that as you say “they come with propositional dogma that forces them to skew”.

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, you missed a word that is key to the text. I said “presuppositional DOGMA.” Now I know you have not received a seminary education, but where does dogma normally come from?

RODERICK:
With any respect I have left for you, what is your problem?  Do you think every person must attend a seminary to have any understanding?  You sir, have to be one of the most pompus elitist I know. You suppose the word “dogma” must mean the hyperpreterists get their “dogma” from the Bible.  Dogma can be the “teaching/doctrine/belief” of any group.  In this case, the “dogma” of the hyperpreterist movement is a presuppositional dogma that God either didn’t or couldn’t maintain the most basic understanding of truth — they then use that to interpret the Bible in this skewed way.  If you claim the hyperpreterists get their view from the Bible, you have once again played right into their hand.  However, your own sentence betrays that possibilty, since you said, “They [hyperpreterists] COME with presuppositional dogma…”.  Exegesis as you know literally means “lead out of” (ex = out) So, if they COME they aren’t getting it “out of” the Bible, but rather it is something they are imposing ON/INTO the Bible.  They COME bringing a false propositional and thus THAT sir is what we MUST deal with FIRST (but not excluding exegesis — inserted for your benefit)

DR. TALBOT:
The Hyperpreterist have (in my opinion) misinterpreted a text and then required all other texts to conform to the doctrine they created by faulty exegesis.

RODERICK:
There is the problem, you say “in [your] opinion” — thank you!  It is also an opinion you collated after only 6 months in the “cause” against hyperpreterism.  But somehow you are an expert?  What constraint has the hyperpreterist removed that allowed them to “misinterpret a text” (is it one text, “in your opinion”???)  Do you think it is coincidence that the first and still most prevelant “teachers” of hyperpreterism come from the denomination of “church of Christ” (coc)??  Max King, Tim King, Jack Scott, Don Preston, Wm Bell, Ed Stevens, Terry Hall, Virgil Vaduva, Kurt Simmons, Jeff Vaughn and others, all associated in some way with the coc.  What is the common theme of coc?  As you know, the coc comes from the Restoration Movement (see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Restoration_Movement — p.s. using wiki because it is open source and can be challenged) and the Restoration Movement’s main theme was what?  That the true Church and true Gospel ceased to exist and had to be “restored”.  This proposition fits perfectly with allowing the hyperpreterists to think his hyperpreterism was lost, or misunderstood for 2000 years and it only needed to be “restored”.  They can start over fresh and not bat an eye.  It wasn’t merely them taking off into error by “misinterpreting a [single] text” but rather their erroneous proposition has lead them INTO heresy after heresy.  They didn’t get their “dogma” out of (ex-egesis) of the Bible.  Further, Dr. Talbot, your own protege, hyperpreterist Sam Frost stated just today to his fellow hyperpreterists who are claiming he is afriad to chuck his remaining pretention to orthodoxy, Sam said, “we are all preterists! We are not afraid to change our minds on MAJOR pieces of dogma!” (see: http://preterismdebate.ning.com/profiles/blogs/does-christ-confer-the-image ) See, Frost admits his hyperpreterism isn’t “dogma” from the Bible or from the traditional Christian interpretation.  It is something new he is imposing on/into the Bible and on/into Christianity.

DR. TALBOT:
Now, anyone dealing with the Hyperpreterists is going to be confronted with a lot of text proofing, some exegetical studies (those who actually do have training, and those who seriously lack it, but pretend they do), and systematic or theological propositions developed from their exegesis.

RODERICK:
You have it backwards, their propositions didn’t “develop from their exegesis”.  This is yet another contention between, not only you and I but as I pointed out also Gentry’s and Wilson’s comments. Your understanding of what is going on with the hyperpreterists is clouded by your close association with hyperpreterist Sam Frost.  Perhaps he has wooed you to think he is a legitimate student of the Bible rather than some guy imposing his erroneous premises on the text and then further falling into error as he operates in the text from that faulty premise.

DR. TALBOT:
Look at their writings, some of them are doing exactly what the Westminster Confession says ought to be done. Do we through out the Westminster Confession because the Hyperpreterists are following it? It is not the form, but the false exegetical and hermeneutical interpretations that have lead to their heretical dogma! Form and content are two different things!

RODERICK:
Wow, this is very interesting.  Remember when I first wrote your seminary [WTS] to ask if you would allow a hyperpreterist to help develop your class programs?  Though you initially “didn’t answer” except to give my private email over to your protege and heretic Sam Frost (how “Christian” of you), you DID eventually answer by telling me WTS holds to the WCF as if that should rule out WTS supporting hyperpreterism.  I replied by telling you that some hyperpreterists, like your protege claim they too hold to the WCF, so that wasn’t enough to clarify your position.  But here, you full out say that some hyperpreterists are utilizing the WCF form.  So, why did you get so upset when you telling me WTS held to the WCF wasn’t enough? (see: http://www.preteristblog.com/?p=1307 ) Again, you have it backwards, it is their heretical propositions that have lead to their heretical hermeneutical interpretations and their heresy simply begets more heresy.  Even Dee Dee [an avid opponent of hyperpreterism] USED to realize this (see: http://www.preteristblog.com/?p=133 ) until she came under your influence.  She has seemed to have thrown all that out the door now.  She speaks of hyperpreterist Virgil Vaduva, whom you have said ‘has been the most logical and compelling advocate of what direction and shape that Full (Hyper) Preterism must take in order to break its ties with ‘historic Christian orthodoxy.’” (see: http://theologyexplained.ning.com/group/drkennethgtalbot/forum/topics/th… ).  Why is he the most “logical and compelling advocate” of hyperpreterism?  Because as you pointed out, he is taking steps to break ties with “historic Christian orthodoxy”.  It has nothing to do with “exegesis” and everything to do with running roughshod over historic Christianity, over the propositions of historic Christiantiy and replacing it with foreign propositions.  Vaduva is perhaps the LEAST exegetical man in the hyperpreterist movement, so if you think he is the “true” representative, then why are you claiming we toy around with pretenders like Frost and friends?  Indeed, heresy begets heresy.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “That is the SAME as me saying they start with a proposition that is antithetical to ALL of historic Christian interpretation.”

Dr. Talbot responds: No, Roderick, you are wrong. You just don’t get it do you? I mean you are really blind to this thing! What I said is how they get their dogma, and that in that way it is antithetical to historic Christian interpretation, but that is not what you have been saying at all.

RODERICK:
Really?  And you want to claim I’m “conflicting” and “confused”.  You apply a backwards understanding of where the hyperpreterist starts.  First you tell us they COME with false presuppositional dogma then you want us to believe (in your [6 month] opinion) that they arrived at their heresy via a careful WCF-like exegesis.  You are just darned determine to legitimize hyperpreterists aren’t you? To what end?  So you can come and give them an alternative you created?

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “Now can we drop this fake discussion and get to the real one you are itching to take up here?”

Dr. Talbot responds: The only thing “fake” about this discussion is YOU! Sorry, I know that hurts, but you choose your words poorly! So, as you do unto others, this time, I will return it unto you. That is about how you would interpret it. Sorry, but it is late and I am being a bit sarcastic from reading your arguments.

RODERICK:
How pastoral of you, how “lovingly” elder-like of you. I thought is was an “ad hom” when one ceases attacking the argument of his opponent and instead starts attacking the person, as your saying, “you” is personal after all.  The reason I called it a “fake discussion” is because you really want to, as it seems always have a “Clarkian” discussion. You have not hurt me good Dr.  I find your unravelling sad to see.  Even your student, Frost admits he like you is consumed with his “Clarkianism”.  Frost recently said: “Some may think that I admire Clark too much. Well, maybe. But, for me, Clark is not just a man. He represents a viewpoint shared by many able Christian philosophers and theologians, past and present.” (see: http://thereignofchrist.com/gordon-h-clark-the-definition-of-man-part-iii/ )  Indeed, you have had an impact on this man, especially as he said elsewhere:

“For Preterism, the best means is Clark’s epistemology and his insistence on the role of Logic. God’s word is to be read logically. The whole preterist charge is “inconsistency” on the part of Tradition theology. “Near” means “near” to us as it does to God, and if we apply “near” consistently throughout the Bible, we MUST arrive at Preterism. That’s what we are saying. Full Preterismi is a logical necessity of “partial preterism.” (see: http://thereignofchrist.com/judged-by-no-one/ )  Hmm, I guess you’re right, Frost ISN’T using (misusing) the tools you taught him to promote heresy and I guess you’re also right that you have no responsibility in the matter.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “Obviously you have just conceded the main thrust of my original article. Right?”

Dr. Talbot responds: You could not be more wrong!

RODERICK:
Hmm, we’ve been down this road already.  Re-read prior comments.

DR. TALBOT:
Dr. Talbot responds: Their “propositional DOGMA.” Now reread what I already have written and you will see you errant interpretation again!

RODERICK:
Nope, I read you right, you agreed that they impose something outside (since they COME with their dogma).  Maybe just for once you can admit you are wrong…even to a poor, uneducated second-class person like myself?…maybe not.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “Therefore, let us first consider their proposition. The proposition of hyperpreterists, whether they will admit to it openly or not is that for whatever reason, God was unable or unwilling to maintain the most basic understanding of His plan within the community of saints.”

Dr. Talbot responds: “Sorry, I have had a lot of discussion with both Samuel Frost and Dr. Birks, and neither of them has ever told me that that was the primary position of Full (Hyper) Preterism. That might have been your primary position, but I have yet to see that statement that you claim in writing. Would you kindly give a source for that, and in particular, from Samuel and/or any other seminary trained (not to put any one down because they lack a seminary education), or OK, Dave Green, who has stated that that this is their first proposition. Because I know that Samuel Frost, Jason Bradfield, Larry Siegle and others following them, state that their first principle is “The Bible is the Word of God written.” I don’t know about the other sites, because in truth, I really have not been interested in those who are universalists. I have only an interest in those who claim to be Reformed and Orthodox. So, to be up front and honest in our dealings with the Hyperpreterists, SHOW ME THE STATEMENT THAT SAYS THAT WHAT YOU SAID IS THEIR FIRST PROPOSITION.

RODERICK:
Oh that settles it Dr. Talbot asked a heretic if they have an overarching premise that has to have God as unable or unwilling to maintain the most basic understanding of truth and they told him, their first principle is his very own Clarkian, “The Bible is the Word of God written.” (yay Clark!)- Nevermind that they have to allow that perhaps God didn’t maintain the Bible.  I guess now Dr. Talbot will have a discussion with Obama and believe him when Obama says, “No, I’m not a socialist and no I don’t want to turn America into a socialist country”.  Huh??? Although I keep providing links, I’m PURPOSELY not going to provide you to links about this, because I want you to remain in your delusion on this matter.  I want you to keep up your approach.  That will be the only way you might be convinced, when you fail on your own accord, that way you can save face.  But if you are really interested, just ask PaulT how many times the hyperpreterists have stated the Church missed it all these years.

DR. TALBOT:
Now Roderick, this really concerns me, because you state “whether they will admit to it openly or not is that for whatever reason” is raising BIG RED FLAGS! If they don’t say it, and say that is not true, and say, “here is what we believe and it is our first principle”, it is a misrepresentation, no, it is a lie to say something that they have not said. To say, “this is really what they say, but they don’t say it, but we know it, because we can read their thoughts.” Roderick, this really bothers me that you would say such a thing in public! You have openly stated that you are building a straw-man argument and if we all “unite” under this argument, we can beat them. In legal terms we call that FRAUD! In logic a STAW-MAN argument! In ethics is a MISREPRESENTATION of the truth, and in the Bible, it is called a Lie.

RODERICK:
Again, are you THAT gullable?  Did you vote for Obama then?  I mean he also won’t “admit to it openly” that he is trying to turn this into a socialist country. Am I “misreprenting” Obama? Does it “really bother you” when people point out Obama’s real agenda?  Should they never say such a thing in public?  What “straw-man” (such a worn out seminary catch-phrase) am I building Dr. Talbot?  You the man who has been in this cause for all of 6 months and have been for years more or less coddling one of the main advocates of hyperpreterism.  I am so impressed with your assements.  A man who takes the word of heretics and calls Christians “liars” and allows your proteges like Sharon Nichols to actually publicly claim I am showing “strong signs of serious personal problems” — posted on the very site that represents you (see: http://theologyexplained.ning.com/group/memberpresentation/forum/topics/… ) Talk about libel and disgusting, you actually allow your name to be associated with people questioning another Christian’s mental state.  Again, your student Frost recently even said: “we are all preterists! We are not afraid to change our minds on MAJOR pieces of dogma!” (see: http://preterismdebate.ning.com/profiles/blogs/does-christ-confer-the-image )  Sure sounds like he is saying as a hyperpreterist, he changed his mind on the “dogma” (traditions, 2 Thes 2:15 once and for all delivered to the saints)…because why?  Because he is a “preterist”, not because the Bible says different than the “tradiotnal” interpretation.  He clearly separates himself from Christianity.  Futher, have you ever read Ed Stevens, “Silence Demands a Rapture”?  He retitled it “Expectations Demand a Rapture” when he realized by saying “silence” he was admitting that historic Christianity is “silent” on being anything like hyperpreterism. (see link)  He tries to deal with the issue by claiming there were 1st and 2nd rank Christians in AD70 and only the 1st rank were supposedly raptured, leaving behind 2nd rank who didn’t really know what happened and thus were “silent” for 2000 years.  This is his attempt to answer why 2000 years of Christianity hasn’t advocated anything like hyperpreterism.  This is explicitly saying that the Church failed to maintain truth for 2000 years. And for the longest, Ed Stevens was considered THE “Reformed Preterist” long before Sam Frost came on the scene — Ed, even maintains a closed group called “Reformed Pret List” (see: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/rplist/ ).  So good Dr., don’t come with 6 months of interaction and think you are going to tell me what the hyperpreterists do and don’t believe.  You sir have nerve.  I question your objectivity since you are mentor and close friends to perhaps the present leading hyperpreterist — as a matter of fact, I hold you somewhat responsible for him.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “If we do not first address this false proposition (and you can do so from the Bible, I never said we couldn’t or shouldn’t)”

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick is that you over their typing this now, or did the dog jump in while you were taking a break! Roderick, If I can do so from the Bible, then you have really wasted my time – are you kidding? You said “I never said we couldn’t or shouldn’t). WHAT IS THIS!? This is just unbelievable!

RODERICK:
You wasted your time claiming when I say FIRST it means “not include”.  Maybe if you wouldn’t have spent so much time ignoring the fact that FIRST necessitates something more and after you wouldn’t have gotten yourself into this mess…speaking of dogs.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “but if we don’t first address this false proposition, then we would merely chase our tails with the SKEWED “exegesis/hermeneutics” that we would be validating by treating it as if it was on par with acceptable exegesis/hermeneutics.”

Dr. Talbot responds: WHAT ARE YOU SAYINIG? MAKE UP A LIE ABOUT THE HYPERPRETERISTS? You do not have to lie to counter a false teaching, which it is my opinion, just give them the truth! My job is only to show the truth of Scripture, I am not God and thus you really believe that by some conjured up scheme I will convert them?

RODERICK:
Now kind sir, you are outlandish here.  Who is saying make up a lie?  Rather, let’s indeed give them the truth, which is to FIRST AND FOREMOST point out their proposition is wrong.  The only person I see conjuring up schemes sir, is YOU.  Before you came on the scene, no one in the “cause” tried to be the leader of the cause.  Not Gentry, not Seriah, not Mathison, not Dee Dee, not Roderick and we certainly DIDN’T throw historic Christian eschatology under the bus by trying to introduce some “conjured scheme” called “Realized Preterism” as you are trying to do (see: http://preterismdebate.ning.com/profiles/blogs/what-is-realized-preterism ) Even the hyperprets see through your “conjured scheme” — listen to a few of their comments regarding even the notion of your “Realized Preterism” —

“It’s a safe place for those who are half way between partial and full preterism.” — Mike Loomis
“I assume that it is a compromise position…” — Larry Siegle (see: http://preterismdebate.ning.com/profiles/blogs/what-is-realized-preterism )

Even they think it is a joke.  You sir, have sold the farm and they know it.  You in 6 months have single-handedly undid the progress we were making marginalizing the hyperpreterist movement. You extend an air of validity to hyperpreterism, and it is no wonder, since one of your main students and luncheon buddies is a major leader.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick, your right, I have only been here for about 1 year. However, if I know one thing about Samuel Frost, Michael Bennett, and others, if you want to confront their arguments, then you are going to have to confront their interpretations.

RODERICK:
Dr. Talbot, your goal is different than my goal.  My goal is to help Christians avoid falling into hyperpreterism (as has been, at least in the past, the goal of PretBlog), however it seems your goal is to “convert” hyperprets (as you said a few comments back).  My interactions with hyperpreterists are not so ignorant as to think I could show them ANY Scripture that they would accept to refute their heresy.  After all, they didn’t get their heresy from reading Scripture.  They COME (as you admitted) with faulty propositions and dogma and force it into their interpretations.  If Sam Frost gave up hyperpreterism tomorrow, this guy has major, major issues besides that heresy.  I’d rather see the man deal with the root of the issue — he is a proud, proud, snobbish elitist and even his fellow hyperpreterists know that (Ask, Jeff, Rich, Norm and others).  So, my “confronting” them will be about as fruitful for them as it is when I confront a seminary president who seems to think no one should be given the time of day unless they are “educated” by some approved institution.  Yet, as now with the hyperpreterist issue, my audience is not the hyperpreterists but with those who might fall into it.  Everyone I’ve known who has REALLY renounced and left hyperpreterism, not merely transitioned to some “compromise/half-way” position, all have done so without ANYONE personally convincing them.  Rather, they first humbled and admitted they had been duped by their own shortsightedness and false presuppositions.  You would have done well to wait a little and understand what was going on before you put yourself forward as the champion.  And certainly not take your cues from Sam Frost, a hyperpreterist himself.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick, I am not going to be tied to this computer chasing the Hyperpreterists the rest of my life. I am writing a book against it (which I have funding to send it to every Reformed and Evangelical Pastor in the country). I will produce a DVD – like Amazing Grace: History and Theology of Calvinism (it is on the drawing board as we speak). And I will leave a website loaded with all the arguments necessary for research on Hyperpreterism.

RODERICK:
Good for you, but guess what? It might do some good if you hold off on that book and DVD until you clearly understand what is going on. Maybe spend time being a student.  May I suggest Todd Dennis as your teacher?  Because so far, you are going to leave a website loaded with erroneous and not well studied assumptions based on your myopic interaction with the hyperpreterist movement.  If you send to churches the kind of stuff you have been spreading, you will generate perhaps more hyperpreterists than Gary DeMar himself.  I pray you will heed the warning of this uneducated, unable, pitiful soul…or maybe not.  BTW, I thank you for exacerbating the issues so much that you drove me from the field.  I will be “untied” from chasing the hyperpreterists long before you.  Though it is not always a bad thing to spend your life-time fighting against a putrid heresy — ever heard of Athanasius?

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “It is the heretic that has “prioritized” our need to address their erroneous proposition, since as you agreed that is what is driving their false interpretations. Are you still confused?”

Dr. Talbot responds: No, I am not confused, I am almost at a loss for words at what you have said. You have publicly handed the Hyperpreterists the rope that they will hang you with. PUBLIC ANNOUNCMENT – I AM NOT INVOLVED IN THIS SKEEM AND I WILL CONTINIUE TO FOLLOW THE HISTORIC REFORMED TRADITION after I settle some other issues that remain to be finished. I am testing truth claims. I know what that means, and how to do it. I am involved in the negative test currently, then I will go to the positive test (I bet Samuel Frost and Jason Bradfield are the only ones who understand that statement).

RODERICK:
No, you are involved in the scheme of negating the FACT that historic Christianity has had a united basic eschatology for 2000 years, and you are feeding right into the hyperpreterists by offering an personal alternative you are calling, “Realized Preterism”, as if historic Christian eschatology was not clear enough.  Heck, if I was still a hyperpreterist, you’d be an excellent loose linch-pin to show that hyperpreterists are right to question the validity of what Christianity has been saying about eschatology.  After all, you are doing it, so why can’t they?  You say you don’t play to the crowd, but here you are giving an elitist shotout to Sam and Jason, your fellow “Clarkians” with whom you appear to have more commonality even though they are heretics.

DR. TALBOT:
That Roderick is what makes them good adversaries, (not good as in right) good as, for example, I play chess, I am not really good, but fair. But to play someone who also has many of the skills that they have philosophically, they are harder to deal with. They are clever, they use logic, they employ philosophical arguments that the average person has not even heard of and that frustrates the laymen. As far a heretics go, they are as good as they get!

RODERICK:
I’d say they are more “cunning” that clever.  Another employed cunning, philosophical, “logical” arguments which were so “hard to deal with” that it ruined not only one person’s faith but had cosmological effect (Gen 3:1-7).  Rather, you just “respect” Sam and Jason because you have more bond with “Clarkians”, even heretical ones than you do with fellow Christians. The “average person” and “laymen” is clearly not worth your time.  You have made that clear many times in your comments.

DR. TALBOT:
But their failure will be to underestimate my “strategy” and Samuel Frost calls it. Now, if he has figured it out already, it is not much of a strategy is it? Sorry, Samuel, I had to not respond before, I just love you thinking you got me cornered and your getting the smoke and mirrors. Now, to be sure, it is not a game at all, but it is unquestionably strategic. However, that is the philosophical side of me coming out.

RODERICK:
See, it is all about you and your strategy.  We’re all supposed to keep eyes on you.  Yes, it is a game with you.  That much is clear.  Give me 10 Gentrys and 10 Mathisons, or even a humble “laymen” with discernment to a man who is puffed up with his own ability.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: Dr. T says: “I chose the “propositions” of the Bible because God says that I must believe His Word. Why do you choose other non-biblical propositions?” Dr. T, you didn’t choose the propositions in this case, but rather the heretic has chosen them, if you allow his false proposition to stand.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, let me see, Dr. Calvin started with that proposition, Dr. Van Til, Dr. Clark, Dr. Frame, Dr. Bahnsen, Dr. Gentry, the Westminster Divines, are you saying that they are all hereitics? I mean, Most of the fellows at SGP or PD are younger than I am! I taught Samuel Apologetics! Are you kidding! I cannot wait to get my paper out on this site about Calvin’s Doctrine of Scripture.

RODERICK:
We’ve been around this block before and you were clearly WRONG.  B.B. Warfield, Calvin, VanTil said completely opposite of what you propose (see: http://thekingdomcome.com/epistemology_example ).  They ALL understood the “natively endowed” awareness of God in all humanity (Romans 1:20).  However, specifically, you allowed the hyperpreterists to sell you a bill of goods because you ignore their overarching premise because they tell you it isn’t their overarching premise and like Obama telling Americans he is not a socialist, you buy it.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: Now, you can do one of two things; (1) Let the heretical proposition stand and let the heretic take you on an “exegetical / hermeneutical” wild-goose chase as you pretend that their handling of Scripture is on par with historic Christian interpretation.

Dr. Talbot responds: First, it is you who is pretending! You are pretending to know something that you know very little about.

RODERICK:
Wait, here you are a man who has been publicly interacting with hyperpreterism less than 1 year.  I was a hyperpreterist for 15 years and now you dare tell me to I “know very little about” it?  Can you be anymore obtuse? Do you think that is really rational?

DR. TALBOT:
Secondly, well Paul T, what Samuel did not say about you, Roderick just did! Paul T, I will apologize for Roderick. I think you are dealing with the issues of exegesis and Scripture and that is what must take place. Oh, and to all you Reformed theologians, living and dead, I also apologize for Roderick.

RODERICK:
No need to apologize to PaulT, he understands that the overarching premise of hyperpreterism is their denial of God’s ability to maintain the basic understanding of truth within the community of saints.  No need to apologize to the Reformed Theologians (at least the non-Clarkians ones), they too realize that the starting point is “God exists and is sovereign”.  They understand it and can show it even from the Bible, Romans 1:20.  Rather, I apologize to the congregations that will have to deal with the future hyperpreterists who will have been launched into that heresy via your “strategy” of offering them a personalized “conjured scheme” you call “Realized Preterism”.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “(2) You can point out that false proposition of the heretic and let them know they cannot engage you with Scripture until they and you first have a discussion as to why their proposition (driving their exegesis) is wrong.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Just another fallacy, you sure have a lot of them! It is a false dilemma that I only have two options. I bet if you think real hard, no, scratch that, I will proved another choice, at least one that will prove my point, but if you need more, I can provide them also: (3) I can engage them in ‘testing truth claims” and then deal with exegetical studies. Thus, I have three options, not two as you falsely state.

RODERICK:
So you think you can change “deal first and foremost with propositions” to “test truth claims” then use the word “THEN”…(a secondary connotation) followed by “deal with exegetical studies” and you think this is different than what I said? First deal with propositions/”claims of truth” THEN exegesis.  Maybe I should spend the rest of the article asking you why you made “exegetical studies” secondary and not primary.  Or I could just claim you did “not include” exegesis at all. You want to take what I said, reword it, subsume it and pretend it is your argument? Please Dr. Talbot, tell me I’m almost at the end of this interaction.  It is so taxing because it is so rosey-round-robin with you, seminary educated or otherwise.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “I have simply chosen course 2 and yet you want to berate me for it? Of course I can’t discuss the “propositions of the Bible” with a heretic, since as you admit, the SKEW their very interpretation of the Bible. With all their redefinition of terms, false etymologies and complete disregard for context. It is almost as pointless as discussing football with someone who insist on calling it basketball and calling touchdowns, layups. They are operating on a faulty view of the basics.”

Dr. Talbot states: This reminds me of the democratic national convention – flip/flop.

RODERICK:
Oooo great come back.  What no verbose “explications”?  No citations of some lifted footnote from a book an “average person” and “laymen” supposedly couldn’t grasp? There is no flipflop.  There is just your ignoring that word FIRST necessitates a second or more. 

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “Let me conclude with saying I find it commendable that you for stating you “will not hold back anything on what I believe is ‘errant theology.'” My only concern is that you waited so long as Frost “prostituted” (your word) WTS, Clarkianism and his training as being the reason he has embraced the heresy of hyperpreterism.

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, again you put words into my mouth! Do you know how bad they taste! How do you know I have not confront Samuel? Why did Samuel write publicly that I thought his eschatology is heretical? Did he use my name wrongfully? Well if he said that I thought his view was Reformed, Evangelical, or Orthodox, then yes he did. Just SHOW me the written statements. Now, if he said he was confronted by Dr. Crampton and myself on this issue over lunch (nearly 3 hours) he was under the gun, and that we acted like Christians, were not unkind, did not poison him, shoot him, stuck a knife in him, yes that is true.

RODERICK:
The issue is that for YEARS Frost has been going around talking about how his training at WTS was the building blocks for his hyperpreterism. We’ve already seen where he appeals to your’s and his hero, Clark.  I really don’t care what you and Dr. Crampton said in private to Sam.  Sam has been spreading his heresy PUBLICLY and that is the arena you have failed to protect and act. You want people to think I’ve just been this meanie heretic-hunter and they you are oh-so loving, all the while you have done little, publicly as Frost has been carrying out Romans 16:17-18 for years.

DR. TALBOT:
Let me explain something Roderick. I did not know you until last year. I have no idea what made you leave HPs and come to the Reformed Evangelical Orthodox position.

RODERICK:
It appears you STILL do not know me, I was Reformed BEFORE I fell into hyperpreterism.  Perhaps had you got to know me BEFORE you decided you would make it your personal goal to push your Clarkianism around with me, you’d been able to learn that about me.  I fell into hyperpreterism the way many Reformed people have — assuming “Sola Scriptura” equals “my private interpretation” disconnected from 2000 years of united Christian interpretation.  And for thinking Luther and the other Reformers only opposed the RCC and not also the “radicals” (whom the hyper are more like, rather than like the Reformers they claim to be) (see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radical_reformation ).  It is your very Clarkianism that makes people think the carnal man picks up the Bible and all becomes clear with just a bit of “logic” and philosophy.

DR. TALBOT:
But I am sure of one thing, You have a zeal, but it is without knowledge. You show poor wisdom in all that you have said and done. I rarely engage people this personal, but you made it personal. And by your standards, I guess you have enjoyed this. I bet it would not matter who you were battling, just as long as it is battling someone.

RODERICK:
Not very becoming of you.  Althrough your comments you have belittled not only my intelligence but the intelligence of the “average person” and of the so-called “layment”.  You have over and over questioned my “person”, even allowing one of your proteges claim I have “serious personal problems” nothing is more “personal” than that.  I have far from enjoyed this.  To see you ruin yourself like this has been displeasurable.  Your insinuations are even more telling.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “Why did you “hold back” while Frost, your own student has been actively promoting not only “errant theology,” but “damnable heresy”? I do thank you for some of your recent work but again, the hyperpreterists, with Frost at the head actually think you have sold the farm and given them a victory. Please be concerned.”

Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, I am an Calvinisti, I have already read who wins this battle! Now you say that Samuel Frost has promoted “damnable heresy,” which I am some how responsible for. This irrational logic is beyond me.

RODERICK:
Are you a Calvinist or a hyper-Calvinst?  Of course we know the Lord is victorious yet we are still responsible.  Just because God is sovereign and things will ultimately manifest His glory doesn’t mean we refrain from calling evil evil and good good.  (Is 5:20)  Since you STILL think Sam is a “brother” you are even doubly responsible for him.  He after all constantly claims he learned from you.  You even call him your student.  In the least, we ARE to be our “brother’s keeper” — It just that I am trying to help Christians and you are coddling heretics as if they were “brothers”.

DR. TALBOT:
Well, Roderick, I have publicly said that I think that hyperpreterism is heretical. I will be engaging them exegetically in the near future. What I have not said is that they are not Christians or converted. They are not orthodox, but even the Reformers held that with the Catholic Church in a state of apostasy, there are many who are elect and Christian.

RODERICK:
Now you sound more and more like the hyperpreterists themselves, perhaps too many buddy-lunches with Sam? Hyperpreterists are no more “Christian” than are JWs and Mormons, HOWEVER yes indeed there could be elect even among the JWs, the Mormons, and the hyperpreterists as there are among the RCC.  You see, you are doing like the hyperpreterists, and claiming that because I say they aren’t Christian, that somehow I am speaking of their salvifici condition.  I can’t know that.  That is between them and God, but I can clearly state that what they advocate is not within the community of saints, called commonly, Christianity.  You further validate them by letting them think they ARE within that community.  Do you do the same for JWs and Mormons???

DR. TALBOT:
Now that is an historical position of the Reformed and Presbyterian Churches until 1845, and it returned to the view as acceptable during the 1930s. To prove damnable, one I believe will have to exegetically prove that because of their exegetical fallacy, they have impeded upon an essential of the faith (and it need be on one essential), can it be called damnable heresy! One thing for sure, you have not even attempted the work required.

RODERICK:
Dr. Talbot first, how in the world would you know what I have and haven’t done? You are that quick of read that in 6 months time you have read everything ever written on the subject?  You certainly have changed your tune.  On the phone, you and I were in complete agreement that hyperpreterism is DAMNABLE yet it does not speak to whether a person is damned.  What changed?  An embarassing discussion on epistemology where you were shown B.B. Warfield and Calvin didn’t teach anything like Clarkianism? And so it is now your goal to put this little upstart in his place? (see: http://www.preteristblog.com/?p=2515 )

DR. TALBOT:
Actually, Dee Dee has come much closer than you, and that is because she takes the Scripture in hand and deals with the arguments. With her raw talent, given an education at the seminary, she will be one “bad” (in a good way) apologists (my opinion only).

RODERICK:
Well of course Dr. Talbot, anyone under your tutelage will be a bad apologist.  Get to work on her right away.  Clark tapes, Clark DVDs, Clark books, Clark bumpstickers.  She’ll do fine once you get rid of her “averageness” and her “laymen” mind and replace it with a “Clarkian” mind.  This is part of what I meant by buying people off with influence.  Free tutions, free books, tapes and DVDs.  I almost fell for it too.  I am certainly responsible and accountable to ALL Christians, but I try not to be beholden to any man, a spiritual man is judged by no one (1 Cor 2:15).  Especially not by a man so full of his own ability and education.  I will not say a negative thing about Dee Dee here.

DR. TALBOT:
Dr. Talbot responds: Roderick, you don’t like the way I do things, and you have expressed that publicly in many ugly ways, and only to then apologize and then restate them again.

RODERICK:
Wrong, I didn’t apologize for my disagreement for the way you “do things” — nice way to make it look like I was admitting you were right after all.  I apologized for cutting off communication with you, and only did that when counseled by mutual people in the “cause”. I was wrong to take that counsel.  What is “ugly” is the way you look down on fellow Christians as if we’re all just too dumb to reach your soles.  You have more respect for heretics Sam Frost and Jason Bradfield than you do for the saints.  I mean, if you are allowed to lay it out there, so will I — except you and your cronies will then complain I must show you “respect” while you disrespect me and all other “average” people.

DR. TALBOT:
If you think I really care about what you think after the way you acted, you are sadly mistaken. You know, Dr. Jay Adams says that an apology is just a modern humanistic way of saying, “I got caught,” “but if I hadn’t got caught,” “I would not have apologized.” You see Roderick your apologies are unbiblical! If you want to do anything, repent for your actions and words.
Repentance means that you will do every thing that you can do to avoid repeating the same offenses again. But I will not hold my breath.

RODERICK:
Of course you don’t care about what I or anyone thinks that you consider “average”. Repent for what Dr. Talbot????  For you inserting yourself into something you had only 6 months knowledge about and then for you pushing your Clarkianism at every opportunity and getting embarrassed when you and everyone else watching was shown Calvin, B.B. Warfield and others are in stark disagreement with your Clarkianism?  Maybe you should consider repenting for belittling me, calling me a liar, allowing your protege to claim I have “serious personal problems”.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “I thank you for clearing your schedule to give me full attention, but please let it not distract from issues you may find more pressing.”

Dr. Talbot responds: What is a brother for?

RODERICK:
Well that went no where since your moderator, yet another person over whom you hold sway, abruptly ended that interaction after you got in your two-part licks.  Can I now go around accusing you of dodging the discussion????  As you keep claiming I did after I didn’t continue the epistemological discussion because people thought it would be “bad for the cause”.

DR. TALBOT:
Roderick states: “I ask you, as a brother to step up to the plate on this one and take responsibility for Frost and what he has done under your charge and to make it clear that, hyperpreterist propositions SKEW exegesis/hermeneutics — to the point where discussion of exegesis/hermeneutics with a hyperpreterists is pointless without continuously bringing it back to the FACT of their overarching proposition.

Dr. Talbot responds: Sorry, I cannot do what you have asked me to do. It is unethical. You beat your drums and dance around the computer. I will battle as God has taught me by some of the best apologists in the country. I will do it on the terms and by the standards of ethical conduct and “testing truth claims” and “exegetical studies.”

RODERICK:
You continue to impugn my integrity without basis.  Instead I can prove where you came on the scene offering the hyperpreterists a “compromise/half-way” version of their heresy (they might as well stick with their own, at least they won’t be beholden to you). Did these apologists teach you to berate people you think are your subordinates?  Did they teach you join in adminstration with heretics?  Did they teach you to let your proteges make accusations about people’s mental health? That is your “ethical conduct”?  I find it far from it.

DR. TALBOT:
Now here is the deal Roderick. I will take responsibility for Samuel, if you will take responsibility for President Obama, Senator Ted Kennedy (Guess God is doing that currently), Harry Reed, Nancy Pelosi, Dr. Kevorkian, Adolf Hitler, Judas, and, why not Adam (he got us here in the first place and you should be responsible for him too). Now be serious, how am I responsible for another man’s decisions? If that is the case, then we all answer for each other sins. You make no sense what so ever.

RODERICK:
This comparison is the only thing that makes no sense.  Obama and those others are not my students.  They aren’t under my tutelage.  They aren’t going around claiming they teach what they teach using the tools I gave them.  Dr. Talbot, are you your brother’s keeper or not?  Especially one you call a student who is advocating heresy and leading others deeper and deeper into it.

DR. TALBOT:
Nevetheless, I will confront the Hyperpreterist. Do I expect them to convert. Not likely. It would take the grace of God to change their minds.

RODERICK:
Why don’t you expect them to “convert”?  Perhaps because as Wilson pointed out, their main issue isn’t with someone bringing them an exegetical argument, they have a problem with God’s authority, especially His authority to maintain the basic understanding of truth amongst His community.  You won’t even begin to change their minds because you won’t deal with the root issue.  It is more likely, your conjured scheme of “Realized Preterism” will breed more hyperpreterism.  I pray for the congregations to which you plan you send such a mess.  May God forbid it to arrive.

DR. TALBOT:
I am good at what I do, both in preaching and in apologetics, and even better in debating. But I am not so good that I will change them. You are trying to engage about 100 to 400 people. I have a better strategy, I am going to engage every Reformed and Evangelical Pastor in this country as to what Hyperpreterism is and what they need to understand. That part of my plan is almost over. What I do next? Let’s wait and see.

RODERICK:
The arrogance is off the scale.  Please re-read your paragraph.  Christianity has had a better “strategy”, it is found in Romans 16:17-18 and it calls for urging Christians to watch out for those who come teaching contrary and divisive doctrines that “we did not learn” from Jesus, His hand-picked apostles, the Holy Spirit, codified in the Bible and testified to by 2000 years of united Christian interpretation.  The problem is, you are pursuing “your plan”, “your strategy” and telling us to watch you to see what you do next.  Why?  Why should we?  Are you a showboat?  It certainly seems you have been showboating from the moment you entered this cause.  I respectfully ask you to humble yourself before fellow Christians, even “average” ones.  The most God-glorifying thing you could do at this moment, is to humble yourself and publicly admit you were presumptuous and have been pursuing your own agenda and out of disrespect for those who have been at this much longer and more “educated” on the matter than yourself.  Wow! If you could do that I would be amazed.

Hmmm… Are you two for or against “Hyperpreterism”

As a relatively conservative Christian who has been exposed to a wide variety of Christian thought, my first reaction to this “debate” was one of confusion.  What is “Hyperpreterismi” and why is it heresy or not?  What sides are each of you taking?

What, specifically are you two learned men trying to say to each other?

What, specifically, does this debate do to advance the the Church (meaning the “Body of Christ”, not any particular denomination or whatever other division you prefer)?

How does this discussion support Matthew 28:18-20?

If it does not, does it fall under 1 Timothy 6:3-5?

I am not competent to judge either of you; but rather, as your younger brother, ask you to make your case more clearly, more concisely, and with references to Scripture to back up your position.

Thank you.

My OTHER site

Thanks for the comments and questions John.  Please read my other site, which is devoted to the discussion of hyperpreterismi: http://unpreterist.blogspot.com and then let me know if you think I’m for or against hyperpreterism.  As for a definition of hyperpreterism, please see: http://thekingdomcome.com/glossary/term/8  – As for Dr. Talbot, your confusion as to whether he is for or against it is part of the point of the debate.  It is one thing for a person to say they are against or for something when their actions say different. Thanks again.

Prayer Time

I’m spending a day or so in prayer and reflection before I post on this matter.  I know some friends have been writing to counsel me, and I hear you.  But you have to realize there is more at stake here then appears.  When a man comes in offering his own contrived alternative form of “preterism”, that he is calling “Realized Preterism”, we need to understand there is an agenda at work.  Even the hyperpreterists point out that every time some guy tries to synthesize hyperpreterism and repackage it to sell to the “orthodox” then there is something amiss.  I’m not playing this game anymore.  Everyone can hate me but I’m not playing this game of stroke so-&-so’s ego just so that they won’t get upset.

Thanks

This article

Note:  This article is here for Dr. Talbot and I to continue this discussion.  If he doesn’t desire to continue here, that is fine.  I will still respond to his statements.  However, this article is not for people to come inserting themselves or to lecture me (especially when their conclusions are not based on the facts).  If you want to lecture me, be assured I will read it and consider it and pray about it — but send it via the contact form

Been stalked by Roderick as well? Tell us about it:

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s