Is this guy being honest?
Like I’ve touched upon in previous posts, there comes a time when people make up their mind, that they’ll go to lengths to prove to themselves that they were right all along. I’m witnessing one such example right now, in Daniel Spratlin, a seminary student at a Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. I’ve noticed in Daniel’s lengthy replies, that he tends to spin things (twist arguments, omit points I made, brings up straw men to distract, etc.) to fit his views, and then accuses others of misinterpreting statements. Here is a classic example of him doing so.
More eisegetical interpretation can be found in Bacchiocchi next paragraph:
Finally, if as generally presumed, it was the “weak” believer who observed the Sabbath, Paul would classify himself with the “weak” since he observed the Sabbath and other Jewish feasts (Acts 18:4, 19; 17:1, 10, 17; 20:16). Paul, however, views himself as “strong” (“we who are strong”—Rom 15:1); thus, he could not have been thinking of Sabbathkeeping when he speaks of the preference over days.
Do you see what he’s done here? Bacchiocchi equates Sabbath observance with the “weak” when the text does not do so. Yes, Paul observed the Sabbath (though he “reasoned” in the synagogues, not worshiped) but, because he calls himself “strong,” he clearly did not “esteem” that day above any other. Just like I observe Sunday worship but I do not “esteem” that day above any other. Sabbath observance does not, ipso facto, put one into the “weak” category as Bacchiocchi would have you think. What makes one “weak” is “esteeming” one day above another whether that day be Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, etc. (emphasis mine)
Bacchiocchi clearly was making a hypothetical statement to prove a point (notice IF), yet Daniel claims that Bacchiocchi IS saying Sabbath observance = “weak” believers, when that wasn’t Bacchiocchi’s point at all. Do you see what Daniel just did there?
He either misread the quote, or Daniel is blatantly twisting Bacchiocchi’s words. However, since this isn’t the only instance, it’s seems to me that he’s doing the latter.
Here is another example of Daniel grasping at straws. He tries to discredit Dr. Bacchiocchi to lessen the impact of his argument, turning this from a theological discussion to slander of characters and institutions:
Glenn then goes on to provide the interpretation of “noted church historian, Samuele Bacchiocchi.” I’m going to get to his thoughts momentarily but first I want to digress a bit. Folks, there is no such thing as a SDA scholar. They just don’t exist. You won’t find scholars of any kind in the heterodox “churches.” Why?Because no degree-awarding, reputable, accredited school of higher learning would ever allow them to graduate. It just does not happen…[emphasis mine]
Oh really?!?! So how did these Adventist Professors graduate then? Carlos Martin, PhD or Jud Lake ThD , both from schools Daniel mentions below. Just two examples from one of the 13 Adventist universities in North America. There are many more examples. Again, Daniel doesn’t know what he’s talking about. He continues…
Let’s look at Mr. Bacchiocchi for example.
Dr. Bacchiocchi, pay the man his proper respects.
- B. A. degree in Theology at Newbold College in England (a SDA college).
- M. A. and a B. D. degrees at Andrews University Theological Seminary in Michigan (a SDA seminary).
- Doctoratus at Pontifical Gregorian University (a Jesuit university).
- Awarded a gold medal by Pope Paul VI.
Do you see any orthodox institutions there? Me either. The only school I recognize is PGU and not for good reasons. Reputable institutions include SBTS, SWBTS, SEBTS, WTS, WTS Cali., RTS, Talbot, Princeton, Yale, Harvard, Duke, Oxford, Cambridge, St. Andrews, etc.
Here’s my personal favorite, showing how biased and ignorant he really is:
Again, people, there is no such thing as a SDA scholar or a reputable SDA school. They do not exist.
Wow. Who are you Daniel Spratlin to make such a bold claim? Since when did Daniel become the Simon Cowell of Theologians and Seminaries? Maybe Daniel didn’t see what other scholars had to say about Bacchiocchi’s books, nevermind that the first guy is from a school mentioned above:
Bacchiocchi has sold more books and has received more acclaim than Daniel will ever have. He then goes on to list theologians he “respects” likely because they hold on to the same views as Daniel. The funny thing is, he probably wouldn’t last if he actually had a discussions with some actual students in Adventist seminaries. The fact that he’s having trouble with me is telling enough.
My conclusion of Daniel is that he’s a zealous seminary student (nothing wrong with that), with obviously a lot of time on his hands, and an agenda to prove that his reformed theology is right at all costs, even at the expense of truth. The fact that I, with no formal theological training, am giving Daniel, a Masters seminary student, a run for his money says a lot. The Truth is the Truth, and anyone can plainly see it. You can have all the theological degrees in the world and still be wrong, no matter how much you try to spin and twist things to fit your view.
So I see no point in further discussions with him, as it is likely he’ll just misrepresent and spin whatever arguments I put forward and continue to accuse me of being blinded, when he himself is guilty of the same thing he accuses me of. Some words of wisdom for Daniel in Matt 7:
5 Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
I’ll also take the advice from Jesus, and end this discussion in order to avoid getting the Truth trampled on by pigs and getting torn to pieces:
6 “Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.
Why? Because I can’t trust Daniel, a professed Christian, to be honest and fair in these dialogues. So to answer the title question, is this guy being honest? Sadly no. His website even has a little story which sums up nicely the extremes he’ll take when “defending” his faith (my comments in red):
EVEN MORE ABOUT ME
I like to think that people would say that I am extremely nice. If you are my friend, I will go out of my way for you, no matter what (just only friends? everyone else can go to hell? Didn’t Jesus go out of his way to help EVERYONE?). That’s just how I roll. Another example of how I roll is when I was 13. I was at school and there was this random picture of Jesus in a book some kid was reading. He looked at it and said, “ha…Jesus was a tool!” I heard this, glared at him and screamed at the top of my lungs, “JESUS SAVES !!!” I then lunged across the room at him and punched him in the nose. (I bet the kid repented and was baptized after, and they wonder why the Reformed movement is shrinking.) Hey, what can I say. I stick up for my Lord and Savior. Wouldn’t you? (I wouldn’t do it that way) Why would you want to be against Jesus? [emphasis mine].
Does that sound like something Jesus would do? For someone who claims to have Christ in his life, it sure doesn’t show.
6Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did. (1 John 2:6)
20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them. (Matt 7)