Like Button

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

A Blog By Any Other Name

Something has baffled me for years. A blog is, by definition, the opinion of the owner/author. Oh, I suppose there are "official" blogs, but they are still, by their very nature, opinion. Blogs are not encyclicals, Scripture, divinely inspired. They're just the idea of the particular author. I make no claim to superiority or super spirituality. In fact, I specify off the top I'm one of the "foolish guys". Often, when I write, I'll be telling you not about my latest climb to perfection, but my latest conviction from Scripture. You know ... "Wow, that was convicting. I wonder if anyone else will be convicted by it?"

And yet, despite the nature of blogs and the certainty that I am not ever going to be sainted by the Roman Catholic church, for some reason people take what I write the wrong way. Some are offended, like I'm some faulty official messenger. Some seem to think I'm "holy" or something. They look up to me. But, like Paul, I hope to "be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ." (Phil 3:9) My hope is not in my personal holiness, but in the attributed righteousness of Christ (2 Cor 5:21). Sure, God's Word says that we have been "perfected for all time", but it follows that with the claim that we "are being sanctified." (Heb 10:14) I have no superior standing. Nor do I have special revelation. I simply write about what I see, what I've found, what I've seen from others, what appears to be the consistent message of the Word and the Church.

There are many people who agree with what I write. At least some of what I write. There isn't one, that I know of, that agrees with everything I write. But that's okay. Because this is a blog. It is opinion. It's my opinion. It's what I see and think.

So, why is it that people get their knickers in a twist over what I write? It's a blog. I'm not making national policy or church doctrine. I'm not stating, "Thus saith the Lord ... you must agree with Stan." Even when I say, "This is what God says" (because it's what's right there in the text), I'm simply stating what I see because this is my blog, my opinion. Some find it edifying. Some find it challenging. Some find it boring. Some find it offensive. May I recommend that those who find it offensive recognize that it's a blog, that it is by definition the opinion of one man? (Okay, there have been a few other contributors, but you know what I mean.) If you don't like it, don't read it. There are likely billions of opinions you don't like and don't pay attention to. I can't imagine why mine would be of any concern to you. For those who are challenged or blessed, I'm glad to be of service, even if you aren't necessarily in agreement. You know, "iron sharpens iron." (Prov 27:17) That can be a a good thing. So I'll continue to "make a defense to anyone who asks", hopefully "with gentleness and respect." (1 Peter 3:15) Take it or leave it.

27 comments:

Dan Trabue said...

Good questions, Stan. A question for you: You write a lot about what other people are doing wrong. About ideas out there expressed by people who have offered their opinions. Why do you do that? They are just offering their opinions, why do you feel the need to respond to them?

Is it not the case that people who write in disagreement with your hunches are only doing the same thing that you are doing? The difference being is that they are trying to take it straight to the source? That they are actually engaging with the one who is offering the false opinions (in their opinion)? It seems to me that they are doing exactly what you're doing except that they are doing it a little more responsibly. Rather than complaining about what "those awful people out there" are doing in vague, possibly strawman ways, they are engaging in dialog with the person making the false claims.

Since you do indeed offer your opinions about others' ideas, why do you find it offensive when we do the same thing?

Stan said...

See, Dan? This has always been the problem, hasn't it? I say, "Something has baffled me for years" and you read "you find it offensive". And then you complain when people misrepresent you. I claim that this blog is my opinion and let's keep it friendly and you make it your mission to attack and insult. You call it "hunches" but apparently don't suffer from the same problem yourself since you're apparently here to straighten out mine.

I don't believe that I can straighten you out, Dan. So I don't go to your blog and nag you to death about how you're wrong, wrong, wrong. "Oh, and you spelled that wrong, too." I don't violate your conversation rules or even complain about you in my posts. I talk about ideas, ways people think, positions taken. So while you're busy coming onto my blog complaining day after day about how I'm an evil slanderer and how I misrepresent God by quoting His Word and grumbling about how I misrepresent you (which, by the way, I'm NOT since I'm talking about ideas and, believe it or not, they're not all yours), I'm just here expressing my opinion to those who wish to know and letting God sort it out.

I gave you your moment here, Dan. I'll let you go back into oblivion again. As I said, I don't believe I have the capacity to fix your head. God has to fix your heart. The fact that you make it your apparent life goal to visit every single Bible-based, Christian blog and correct their world speaks volumes of what you believe your mission is and your capabilities are. Expect to be disappointed. I'll pray for you ... and go back to ignoring your voluminous and often rude comments like Craig has given your apparent inability to actually apologize when you are wrong.

Bob said...

I attest to the means and methods of Stan's arguments. first off i would like to note that Stan does not engage in straw man arguments. He does not intentionally build a false representation of other people's opinion, in order to break them down. in all the years i have known Stan, i have never witnessed a case where he attacked the character of a person (ad homonym), but rather his approach to an argument is surprisingly consistent, his methodology is to identify the underlying ideology, then compare that with scripture. how many times do we see Stan pointing out a given section of scripture and than asking the question, what does it say? and why do we disagree? It never ceases to amaze me how many times after Stan points out a given section of scripture to highlight an apparent contradiction, that someone will attack his character, instead of reasoning about the scripture verse in question. I have watched Stan grow for the Past 20 yrs. He may not be perfect in his writings, but He has always called us to reason. his arguments and presentations are clear and concise, without prejudice. he is also standing in the Gap. in that he must subject himself to constant fiery arrows of insipid criticism. we need more Stan's today. He is just a man, fallible and fragile. But He is God's man. and this is enough for me.

Dan Trabue said...

i would like to note that Stan does not engage in straw man arguments. He does not intentionally build a false representation of other people's opinion

I would just say look at this exchange. I commented here, politely, on the topic of the post. My only argument was that, "Is this not what you do, Stan, on a regular basis? Talk about ideas other people have and where you think they are mistaken? If so, then on what basis is it wrong, troubling, baffling that people would actually do that directly with the person with whom there is a disagreement?"

It was/is a reasonable question. Did Stan answer that question?

No. He said my head and heart needed fixing (an attack on the person, not the argument being made) and he commented on my characterization of his bafflement, "offensive." Which is correct, on his part as far as it goes. He did not express being offended. He expressed being baffled. Of course, I deliberately chose "offended" as an object lesson because it is exactly the word that Stan used to describe others who were merely disagreeing with him.

In short, I made a polite, on topic comment which was met with ad hom attacks and a failure to understand that he was doing exactly and literally what I did, by way of object lesson. And he specifically did not deal with the meat of my actual argument/question.

So, as a point of fact, Bob, I would just point to this exchange to demonstrate that Stan does engage in ad hom attacks and in strawman arguments. I don't say that to say that Stan is "bad." I believe with all my heart that Stan is a good Christian brother with whom I merely disagree. I believe his intentions are good, even when sometimes the evidence suggests otherwise.

Peace, and Merry Christmas, y'all.

Stan said...

There is a fundamental difference between saying "People do or think thus and so" and "Dan is stupid and evil." One is a generalization about ideas or actions. The other is personal.

But Bob commented on "strawman arguments", where you falsely represent what the other holds and then explain what's wrong with it. You disagreed with Bob (at least, indicated you did by quoting him and disagreeing). It seems as if you don't understand "strawman arguments".

An ad hominem argument is to argue "You're stupid so your argument is irrelevant." Since I made no such argument, it would appear that you don't understand ad hominem arguments, either.

And if you use "offended" to mean "baffled", it is a failed object lesson.

Stan said...

Welcome to the discussion, Bob.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Stan has very honestly and factually stated the problem with Dan Trabue, as can be attested to by every Christian blogger who has had to deal with Dan until finally banning him from their blogs. Trabue has been exposed as a bonafide false teacher who completely abuses Scripture in attempts to support his false teachings. And yet he has the temerity to once again attack Stan here, and his attack has again been proven for what it is -- nonsense.

Trabue's mission appears to be to visit as many Christian blogs as possible in his attempt to promote his false teachings and get converts to his wicked ideology. And he doesn't like it when he is exposed for what he is.

Bob said...

simple question: what do you want Dan?
in five words or less, say it. i want love , i want to feel significant , i am afraid, i need to be understood, i am not sure God loves me, what is it Dan? would it be such a terrible thing to consider the whys of what your doing? you sound intelligent, but you also sound like your making noise just so you can be heard. Please be still, if you are in Christ you are loved and you can rest now. i noted that you have the capacity to elevate a simple discussion to a higher more complex plain. your apparently very intelligent. that may be what is working against you, your overthinking. again be still, and laugh more often.

Dan Trabue said...

I want grace, Bob. Thanks for asking. I do what I do because I am concerned that the church too often opts for judgmentalism and gracelessness rather than that sweet grace by which we are saved.

And so, when Stan posts something like this, I ask a reasonable question: How is what I'm doing, offering a correction or an opinion on what others believe, different than what Stan does daily? Why is it baffling to Stan that others might want to correct views that appear to be graceless or simply mistaken? If Stan does it every day in vague generalities, what's wrong with me or others offering a simple correction when a fact is misstated, a view is not wholly correctly represented? What's wrong with offering another view point?

And yes, I know full well that I am loved by God and family and community. It just doesn't feel like the greater church community loves one another as we ought or treats one another with grace. That is what I'd like to see. Wouldn't you agree, brother Bob?

Thank you for the wise words and for the laughter.

Dan Trabue said...

And just to clarify: I want grace for the church, I'm not looking for grace for myself. I have God's grace, the grace and love and fellowship of my family, community and church community. I am abundantly blessed by Grace. I'm just hoping to find more grace, more forbearance and patience and respect within the greater family of God. And I know that the reality is that we won't always find grace within this greater pantheon of Church. That is very sad to me, but I recognize that as a reality.

Nonetheless, it is grace which I seek for the church, for one another. Between the church and one another.

Merry Christmas.

Stan said...

Dan, as you know, I'm convinced that we (people in general) have a serious problem with language. I'm asking, then, for clarification, not making an argument. I don't believe I know what you mean by "grace". You are offended when someone says, "The Bible says this is right and that is wrong." But you also claim that you do believe that there is right and wrong. So I don't know what you mean by "grace" as you are using the term. It appears to be not recognizing right and wrong, but you'll surely say that's not true. So what IS it?

Dan Trabue said...

I only mean the normal Christian and English definition of the term, Stan.

Grace (MW): disposition to or an act or instance of kindness, courtesy, or clemency

...and as Christians often define it, "God's unmerited favor towards humanity," or "God's unmerited favor, compassion, love towards an underserving humanity."

I simply mean basic human decency and kindness and respect as a way of life, not only in receiving God's grace, God's favor, but in sharing that favor and grace with others and acting (as God acted/acts) that way towards others.

I mean, along with the apostle Paul, that we should "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you."

What do you mean by it?

And to clarify a misunderstanding, where you say...

are offended when someone says, "The Bible says this is right and that is wrong."

1. I am not offended when someone says that. I'm just not.

2. I do disagree with - sometimes strongly - when someone says "the Bible says X and that means that God thinks Y and Z, and I am able to speak for God on this point and not be mistaken."

That is, I am not offended when someone says "the Bible says that we should pluck out our eyes if they cause us to sin," not at all. But if they say, "Therefore, what that means is that if you see a woman and lust, God wants you to literally pluck out your eye..." then I disagree - strongly - with such a claim. No doubt you could agree.

Same thing when someone says "the Bible says 'That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.'" I am not offended by them pointing out that the text is in the Bible. But, when they proceed to say that "Therefore, I am here to tell you that this is God's definition for marriage, and men therefore can't marry men..." then I disagree with the presumption that they are speaking for God. If they, instead, say, "What that says TO ME, is that it seems TO ME that men shouldn't marry men..." I'm fine with that. I still disagree with their personal opinion, but I am glad to give them the grace - the kindness, the leeway, the respect - to believe that if they want for themselves. I object strongly, however, to the presumption of saying "thus saith the Lord," about their own opinions.

That is not what I would call "offended." It is merely a strong disagreement based on respect for God and the church and a belief in grace and humility.

Is that clearer?

Dan Trabue said...

It appears to be not recognizing right and wrong, but you'll surely say that's not true.

? I am curious, Stan, how you reached this conclusion. You think I was suggesting grace means "not recognizing right and wrong..."? This isn't a criticism, I just don't see how you reached that conclusion.

Here's what I said, " I'm just hoping to find more grace, more forbearance and patience and respect within the greater family of God." and I don't see how plugging in your understanding makes any sense in context...

" I'm just hoping to find more [NOT RECOGNIZING RIGHT AND WRONG], more forbearance and patience and respect within the greater family of God."

?

Just curious, should you want to address it. I understand that people do, in fact, sometimes have problems in how we use language (on all "sides") in communication, but sometimes, it's hard to see how the Other Guy reached his conclusion when you were not saying anything of the sort. At a guess, I'm thinking you were thinking that I was suggesting "if only we ignored any sense of right and wrong, then we'd have graceful, non-combative communication between each other..." but if so, no, nothing of the sort.

Peace.

Stan said...

"I do disagree with - sometimes strongly - when someone says 'the Bible says X and that means that God thinks Y and Z, and I am able to speak for God on this point and not be mistaken.'"

Well, to be honest, you disagree, often strongly, when someone says, "The Bible says X and that means that God thinks X." But your characterization of "I am not offended" laid up against the actual obscenities you use in your disagreement doesn't quite line up.

But in response to your definition of grace as well as your question in the second comment, it would appear that you understand "unmerited favor" to necessarily exclude recognizing sin (right and wrong). On my part, it would be graceless to see someone threatening their eternal condition as indicated, say, in 1 Cor 6:9-10 and say nothing, to show "grace" as you seem to see it as saying nothing. So when I say it appears that you're opposed to not recognizing right and wrong, I mean that you're opposed to not pointing to it. The other person may be transgressing what is clear in God's Word (say, murder or adultery if we're to avoid quibbling), but "grace" in your version would require that you not be "judgmental" in the sense of pointing it out or calling attention to it. To me, that's unkind.

David said...

The huge difference between what Stan does and what Dan does is basis. Stan looks at an idea and compares it to Scripture. Dan looks at the same idea and looks at feelings, experience, science...anything but Scripture. In the past, he has been asked to give Biblical examples for his positions and can only come back with, not Scripture. That is the difference.

Dan Trabue said...

Stan looks at an idea and compares it to Scripture. Dan looks at the same idea and looks at feelings, experience, science...anything but Scripture. In the past, he has been asked to give Biblical examples for his positions and can only come back with, not Scripture.

David, the thing is, I don't use scripture (or, I'd say, misuse Scripture) the same way you all do. Look at it this way: If there were an atheist, you wouldn't ask him to prove his point and ONLY use the Bible to do so, right? It's an irrational request. If you want to make your case with someone who does not agree with your starting point, you have to find another starting point if you want to make your point. Well, while I'm no atheist, I don't think you all are using the Bible correctly, rationally, or biblically, so you can't really expect me to play by your rules to prove my point. Can you see how that's only reasonable?

Put another way, you all hold some presuppositions (that there is a God, that God revealed scripture to humans, that we have those scriptures in the 66 books of the Bible, that God intended them to be used as a "ruling" book, so that, and that alone is how we settle matters of morality and theology, etc) and IF someone agrees with all those presuppositions, then you can proceed to argue your points with that as a starting point. But first, you have to agree on those presuppositions. You all and people like me don't agree on your presuppositions, so you can't expect me to argue as if I did, that's just not reasonable. Make sense?

But, to deal with your point beyond that, I have often cited Scripture for at least partially why I don't agree with some of your points. For instance, I have often pointed to Scripture to say that Scripture/the Bible does not argue for sola scriptura. It's not a biblical argument. It's just not there. Pointing to the absence of support in the text IS providing Scripture for my position. I cite ALL of scripture as evidence that sola scriptura is not a biblical/scriptural opinion. That is a case of me citing scripture.

Similarly, when I say that there is zero biblical support for demanding that Genesis must be taken as literal history or that Adam/Eve must be considered literal people in a story just as it's told in the Bible, that, too, is citing scripture. Literally, factually speaking, "scripture" does not demand that Adam and Eve must be treated as literally factual people in a story told just as it is told. Again, pointing to a complete absence of an argument in scripture for a point IS supporting my point with Scripture.

And that is looking at the evidence using reason and the Bible, so you can't say that I don't use the Bible, David, not and be realistic.

Do you see the two factual problems with your argument, then?

Dan Trabue said...

Stan...

But your characterization of "I am not offended" laid up against the actual obscenities you use in your disagreement doesn't quite line up.

1. I've written tens of thousands of words to you over many years. There have been perhaps 20 or 30 - maybe - "obscenities" that I have used over the years and all those words. Just to be clear that the "obscenities" are not a major part of our dialog.

2. I scare quote "obscenities" because you and I don't agree on what is and isn't an obscenity when it comes to language. Which is fine, we don't have to agree, but just to clarify that I don't consider a four letter word, in and of itself, "obscene." It is a word, a rude word, culturally speaking, but not what I would call obscene. I reserve obscene for things like saying slavery is not a horrifyingly immoral practice, or that women ought not have the same rights as men, etc. Not saying you are or aren't making those points, just some examples to clarify.

3. I have used obscenities a few times to describe things like false witness ("that is a hellish lie, a damnable falsehood...") or things that are just ugly as hades ("defending slavery is 'effed up...'" "that sort of cowardice is 'effing' uncalled for...") like that. To me, it's very much like Jesus using terms like "white-washed tombs" and "dogs" to emphasize point, almost exclusively against the religious pharisees of his day and the purpose, for me, is to express strong moral disapproval. So, if you want to consider strong moral disapproval/disagreement the same as taking offense, okay, so be it. I guess one could make the case that I (we?) DO take offense to harmful, immoral actions.

Stan said...

For the sake of the English language, they are not "factual" errors; they are philosophical errors. Starting with a different philosophy, you have a different approach. That does not nullify the fact that you generally don't make your case on the basis of God's Word.

But, again, it begs the question. "I don't believe in the same premises you do. Therefore, you need to change" is the only message I can come away with from you. And that's better, for reasons I don't understand, than my position. My position is "The Bible says it is God-breathed, so I take it as such" and your position is "My reason is my guide." (Note, by the way, that "The Bible says it is God-breathed" does not make it incorrect, irrational, or unbiblical. It just makes it opposed to your view.)

Dan Trabue said...

So when I say it appears that you're opposed to not recognizing right and wrong, I mean that you're opposed to not pointing to it. The other person may be transgressing what is clear in God's Word (say, murder or adultery if we're to avoid quibbling), but "grace" in your version would require that you not be "judgmental" in the sense of pointing it out or calling attention to it.

But Stan, as you know, I point to places where I think errors (or sins) are happening all the time, I point to them and say "this is wrong" or "I think this is morally wrong..." like that. Clearly, I do not have a problem with pointing out wrong behavior. Now, typically, I try to reserve that to behavior that is causing harm or potential harm to others. That is, if you say, "I really don't think that guys should have sex with guys even in a married relationship, therefore, I won't ever marry a guy..." I don't mind that at all. I fully support you making that call for yourself. Grace to you, support for you as you seek to do God's will.

But, when you try to deny what seems to me to be a basic human right to others, when you mock others for supporting that human right, you are entering into a place of harm and gracelessness, and grace and justice demand that I stand up against that, even if it's a dear Christian brother or sister I'm disagreeing with.

t would be graceless to see someone threatening their eternal condition as indicated, say, in 1 Cor 6:9-10 and say nothing, to show "grace" as you seem to see it as saying nothing.

Well, I think you and I disagree on this point. That is, if someone disagrees with you about gay marriage/sex in a married relationship and it turns out you were right and they were wrong, and that God really didn't want those two guys to get married, well, then they sinned in error. But I would argue that we potentially sin in error regularly, and it is not sinning in error that damns someone to hell. If, for instance, it turns out that you are mistaken about two gay guys marrying and you die and go to the Judgment Seat, and as it turns out, your belief - and the actions that this belief inspired - was very harmful, it turned many people away from God because of how you represented God... if that happens, I don't think you are damned for your sincere mistake. I still think you are a Christian saved by Grace and being mistaken - even continuing in sin in that mistake - does not condemn you, for we are saved by Grace and not by our perfect works or understanding.

So, all that to say that I disagree with what appears to be your starting point. That you know that someone else is potentially damned for being mistaken about a sin. So, because you and I don't know, I think grace is that we agree to disagree. You are free to state your opinions in love, but from the place of "here is my opinion," and not from the place of "thus saith the Lord." Part of the kindness and love of grace is humility. The dividing line then, in intervening or not, is more of immediate harm, for me. And the humility in grace to say "Here is my opinion on the topic..." vs "I am speaking for God on this topic and I can not be mistaken..."

So, are we talking about Grace in the same way, then? To "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you." And to do s from a place of humility, not presumption, of community, not patriarchy?

David said...

So, you agree that we don't have a similar basis for debate? In what rational mind is that a way to continue hounding Bible-believing Christians? You want to debate morality with an atheist, good luck with that, and sure you're not going to win him to your side with Scripture, but that doesn't mean you it either. However, none of us here are atheists, so your argument is nul. We are standing on Scripture as the sole source of faith and practice (you can't give an alternate) but you continue to debate with us as if we agree that there is some other source. How is that rational? You come at us accusing us of being irrational and then do the very thing you say is irrational. We believe in Scripture, you don't. You're not going to convince us otherwise because we believe the heart is deceitfully wicked and man's heart is only inclined to evil, so why would we consider any man-made source? Accept that we are wrong and go away.

David said...

You've done your duty of pointing out our error, your hands are clean, move on.

Dan Trabue said...

Stan...

That does not nullify the fact that you generally don't make your case on the basis of God's Word.

I respectfully disagree. I do so quite literally and factually, just not the way you all do. Now, if you want to say that I don't do so solely based on God's Word (ie, arguing using exclusively text lifted from the Bible), then no, I don't. But then, neither do you.

You do cite biblical texts more often than I do, but that I don't cite texts is not the same as saying that I don't make my case on the basis of God's Word.

That's how it seems to me, at any rate. Again, perhaps we just disagree on that point.

Stan...

My position is "The Bible says it is God-breathed, so I take it as such" and your position is "My reason is my guide." (Note, by the way, that "The Bible says it is God-breathed" does not make it incorrect, irrational, or unbiblical. It just makes it opposed to your view.)

But Stan, MY position is that the Bible says it is God-breathed and I take it as such, too. I just don't agree with your hunch, your opinion about what God-breathed does and doesn't mean. I'm not saying that the Bible is incorrect, irrational or unbiblical, but that certain interpretations of it are. Do you understand the difference?

Stan...

"I don't believe in the same premises you do. Therefore, you need to change"

When one enters into a discussion, it is important to have the same presuppositions or no presuppositions in place, from a rational point of view. Do you disagree?

Do you agree, Stan, that it is unreasonable to ask an atheist to make his case that he has no reason to believe in a god using only the Bible?

I am not saying that I don't believe in the same premises as you, therefore you must change. I'm saying we have to use commonly agreed upon premises to make reasonable progress and that it is unreasonable to expect someone who disagrees with your premises to argue using your premises (whether that is me expecting you to do so or vice versa). I strive very hard not to do this, which is why I did just as I did above... offering the example of the atheist and asking if you agree with this as a rational premise. Seem reasonable to you?

If you do expect people to argue using your premises as a starting point, on what basis - rational or biblical or moral - would you do so?

Here are the 10 commandments of rational debate, agree with them (including #4. "Thou shall not argue thy position by assuming one of its premises is true...")?

Respectfully, Dan

Stan said...

You see, Dan, herein lies the fundamental problem between us that cannot be traversed and, as such, signals the end of any meaningful dialog.
-- You don't like me stating my opinion that the Bible says, "Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God" (1 Cor 6:9-10) and means exactly what it says -- exactly what the Church in all its history has understood it to say -- but you're perfectly happy in telling me I'm violating God's rules -- you know, the ones you selective pick out (e.g., "slander is evil, practicing homosexuality is not").
--You argue that all I have is "hunches", which is okay because all you have is hunches, but apparently your hunches are right and mine (despite the plain texts, the evident logic, the historical Christian orthodoxy, and all) are wrong and I need to exchange mine for yours.
-- More to the point your starting place is "Man" ("you try to deny what seems to me to be a basic human right to others") (and, please note, I have never done a single thing to deny someone basic human rights ... and saying, "I think it's wrong" does nothing to do that). Your starting place is human reason. Your starting place, by your own statement, is in opposition to mine.
-- We don't even speak the same language.

You're right. We don't have the same premises (which I've claimed all along). Thus, a meaningful, reasonable, rational dialog is impossible. Like David said, wash your hands of it, (or, in biblical terms, dust off your feet) and go your way. My opinions expressed on this blog are not changing your world nor will your opposing positions predicated on opposing premises change my thinking. Let it go.

Stan said...

I think, Dan, that we have, perhaps for the first time, clearly established the basis of the problem ... which is the basis of the problem. We have two different starting points. And commonality in those points -- we both have Bibles, we both believe in God, we both call ourselves Christians, that sort of thing -- doesn't make for common basis. Without even attempting to establish that yours is right and ours is wrong or vice versa, I think we can end this here. You've never acknowledged the violation of the rules for a friendly discussion despite my clearly laying out to you what that violation was, and you continue to deny (both here and at Craig's blog) any fault of your own. And here we are at a final impasse where you and we are at different starting points. So we've had our little discussion and we've found the answer as to why you can never get through to us and we can never get through to you, so we're ready now to go back to silence from Dan. I'll continue to pray. You can continue to dog other Christian blogs still willing to let you comment. Enjoy.

David said...

So, he agrees that a discussion cannot happen if people are starting from different presuppositions, and yet continues to come back knowing a reasonable discussion can't happen. There must be something broken in that man's head.

Stan said...

Oddly enough, David, although Dan says, "When one enters into a discussion, it is important to have the same presuppositions or no presuppositions in place, from a rational point of view.", he denies that we cannot have a discussion when starting from different presuppositions. I don't understand. "I am not saying that I don't believe in the same premises as you, therefore you must change. I'm saying we have to use commonly agreed upon premises to make reasonable progress." So, we don't have to change, we just have to eliminate the basis for our discussion. It's not working in my head.

Marshall Art said...

Somehow, in seeing 23 comments to this thread, and considering the topic of this thread, I could not help but assume that Dan was involved. And there he is, the first person posting a comment. I think I'm psychic.