Posted by: reformedmusings | June 23, 2007

The Bias Smoke Screen

A substantial smoke screen has arisen as to the original post that was here. Federal Vision proponents are claiming here and here that my current position on two FV advocates’ slavery views somehow prejudiced my work on the committee. They ignore critical parts of that post.

In that post, I clearly state that I learned of Steve Wilkins’ and his coauthor’s monograph on slavery several weeks ago. It was more specifically about two or three weeks before the 35th General Assembly in June. I started to look into people’s background so that I could better anticipate what might be said on the GA floor. That’s when I learned about Southern Slavery As It Was (PDF here) and Steve Wilkins’ role as a founding director of the League of the South. I had no idea about these things until then. Remember, I’m from Philadelphia, not the South, and grew up thinking that all this was settled by war and constitutional amendment over 140 years ago.

So, again rather than addressing the meat of the original post–Wilkins’ and Wilson’s published stance on Christian’s Biblical permission to own slaves, the heinous myth that slavery “was a Godsend for the slaves”, and other statements that you have to read to believe–their supporters build a smoke screen around some wished-for bias during the last year that didn’t exist. This is just a waste of time.

Again to be perfectly clear, I did not learn these things about Steve Wilkins and his coauthor until about two weeks or so before the 35th General Assembly, which met in June. I was blissfully ignorant of the items mentioned in my previous post until well after the committee report was completed in April.

READ THIS CAREFULLY: For the record, I was not well-read on Federal Vision before working on the committee. I had read only the Mississippi Valley report, about half of the Knox Colloquium compendium presenting both side of the debate, and the Auburn Avenue Session statements online at that time. That’s it, folks. Also for the record, I had heard Wilson speak in the past at a Ligonier conference and had found others of his writings helpful in other areas. Reading his and Wilkins’ monograph on slavery completely changed my views on them two weeks before GA. To say that this knowledge has colored my view of the authors since my discovery of the monograph two weeks before the GA would be an understatement.

Now the obvious question to me is why no one is condemning the mentioned monograph and its contents, which is still for sale on Amazon as I write this and freely available elsewhere on the web. I’ve found it most prominently referenced on secular websites hostile to Christianity. The monograph certainly speaks volumes about the exegetical frame work used to come to such conclusions, which in my mind calls into question if that same framework permeates the rest of the authors’ works. The bias smoke screen apparently attempts to gloss over the real issues.

Now you have the unvarnished truth. It’s amazing how a little breeze of fresh air clears the smoke away…

POSTSCRIPT: I have replaced the original post mentioned above as the distasteful subject matter became the target of too many inquiries and search engine hits for this blog. I have also reworked this page slightly to minimize the possibility that it will be picked up the same way in search engines. The issue in the monograph is not one that I desire to have associated with me or this blog in ANY context.

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