Friday, May 08, 2015

"Be lukewarm and spewed"

Steve Hays renews his ill-advised critique of immediatism by... branching off into all sorts of issues that are not all that pertinent to immediatism.
\\It's revealing how abolitionists think their agitation gives them bragging rights\\

It's an uncharitable and in fact incorrect interpretation of my words to think that I/we have some sort of bragging rights.
Yet let the Lord protect us from such an attitude, to be sure!
Perhaps Steve thinks that the Apostle Paul was trying to claim bragging rights in Philippians 3 or 2 Corinthians 10-11.

\\Abortion isn't the only important issue that Christians need to be involved with\\

Nobody has said it is. Yet we have made the case again and again why the murder of 60 million and counting humans over the course of 42 years and counting should take a very, very high priority over even something like whether the gaystapo gets to tell 501c3 organisations whom they should marry.
Euthanasia - get back to me when it's legal to shoot senior citizens in the head willy-nilly and the death rate surpasses a few thousand a year. I'm not trying to sound callous here, but I actually think Steve is the one who is being callous and turning a blind eye toward child sacrifice. Nobody is saying that we should do nothing about those other things - those ought to be combated with immediatist calls to repentance and the Gospel of Jesus Christ the same as abortion ought to be. The Word of God is the weapon.
Steve also misses the fact that all of these are intertwined in many ways. Attack the powers of darkness in one area and you diminish it elsewhere too. But you have to use godly weapons and wisdom, not the worldly kind.

\\We need to resist secular totalitarianism in its various manifestations.\\

Ironic that Steve says this in defense of the pro life movement, which "resists secular totalitarianism" while teaming up with atheists, papists, eastern conciliarists, and other pagans.

\\the church has different body parts. Different members have different gifts. All Christians don't have the same duties or calling\\

Have this kind of discussion long enough with people and you can see this coming a mile away.
Steve runs afoul of the Bible at this point.

"Calling" is not the same as "gifting". And Steve needs to prove, not assume, that
1) variously gifted people can't address abortion with the Gospel
2) variously gifted people shouldn't address abortion with the Gospel
3) certain giftings mean you don't have an obligation to love your preborn neighbor who is being murdered down the street.

\\There's a need for Bible scholars, ethicists, and apologists.\\

A few, sure. Most churchgoing people are not in position to be those things, and that majority is too busy watching movies, amusing themselves, and "attending services" to do much of anything about anything, let alone sacrifice for the good of their neighbors being taken away to death.

\\Anti-abortion activism isn't the only way of loving your neighbor. \\

What about your preborn neighbor, 1.2 million or more of whom will die this year alone?

\\Visiting shut-ins and nursing home residents is a godly activity. Or caring for enfeebled parents.\\

Is Steve assuming these are mutually exclusive?

\\Moreover, it's very time-consuming just to be a breadwinner, as well as a husband and father\\

1) What does this have to do with immediatism, again?
2) Don't I know it! I have three children, one a newborn with Down Syndrome, two jobs, a 35 mile commute to the main one, and all the worries and difficulties of anyone else. I make time to speak up for my preborn neighbors, and all around me I see armchair QBs like Steve who whine they don't have time.
3) And this:

ME: You actually have no idea whether it does.
STEVE: Sure we do. Restrictions on abortion save babies covered by those restrictions.

Steve must've missed my challenge to prove it, not assume it.
And also my challenge to prove, not assume, that calls for immediatism wouldn't've saved MORE than the incremental "gains" he can point to.

\\In the nature of the case, legal restrictions on abortion save babies who'd otherwise be aborted absent those restrictions\\

The mistake is that those restrictions are pretty easily gotten around, not least by simply lying or fudging the paperwork, building a new, cleaner facility, actually getting an office and operating room in a legitimate hospital (which makes the abortionist ten times as hard to expose and challenge), going to get the baby earlier, jabbing the baby with anesthetic before murdering him, using a suction tool instead of a bladed tool, etc.

\\Moreover, if Alan doesn't think legal restrictions on abortion reduce abortion, how would a legal ban on abortion reduce abortion?\\

If Steve were listening more than talking, he'd know that's not the abolitionist position.

\\Why does Alan fail to engage the actual argument–especially when I'm responding to him on his own terms?\\

Irony can be pretty ironic sometimes. Let the reader judge.

\\Now we're treated to a tendentiously lopsided appeal to divine providence. So doubting the efficacy of abolitionist methods betrays a lack of faith in divine providence, but denying the efficacy of prolife methods is consistent with faith in divine providence. Alan's special pleading is flagrant.\\

The difference here is that abolitionists say what God says and trust God to do what is right. The pro-lifer looks back on when he didn't say what God says and has to say "God can draw straight lines with a crooked stick" as he fatalistically shrugs.
Steve doesn't seem to realise that faithfulness actually does matter. He's still stuck in "save the babies" mode, when he ought to be in "Honor God at all costs" mode.

\\On the one hand, they disdain the prolife movement for its allegedly ineffectual efforts. And they contrast that with the more successful methods of abolitionism.\\

Only to respond to pro-life pragmatic arguments. When we are speaking positively about our own position, we talk about being faithful to God, hoping in providence, walking by faith even when all around is dark and unclear. Steve is way off here.

\\To take the most recent example, in his debate with Russell Hunter, Cunningham cited studies by Prof. Michael New, documenting the fact that incremental laws are indeed saving lives everywhere they are passed. \\

Our upcoming response will demonstrate the poor reasoning behind that assertion.

\\But abolitionists don't want to hear that\\

Far from it. We will hear anything and everything, and in fact we do! From all sides.
Steve is the one who hasn't correctly represented us yet.

\\A "significant number of babies." That's a very telling phrase. Suppose incremental legislation only saves an "insignificant number of babies." That doesn't meet Alan's threshold. Life is cheap.\\

Not at all. How much time has Steve spent out front of an abortuary, pleading? Preaching the Gospel to gatherings of people? Ministering and begging people not to murder their child? Steve can spare me his sanctimony.
I was responding to the positive claim of incrementalists, nothing more. Steve keeps confusing my responses to my own positive claims for my position.

ME: Duty belongs to us; results belong to God.
STEVE: As if abolitionists hold the copyright on that motto. But, of course, prolifers can say the same thing.

Only one of us lives consistently with the motto.

\\By contrast, abolitionism issues I.O.U's. Abolitionism is the poker player who begs off his bookie by assuring him that he will pay it all back after he wins big in the next game. Problem is…it's aways the next game, never the last game. Abolitionism is betting on the future. Abolitionists only save babies right now by imitating long-standing prolife methods.\\

Steve repeats the same errors as last post.

ME: Why is it bad to remain morally pure?
STEVE: Few things are more spiritually perilous than fake moral purity.

Irony again.
May the Lord protect both of us from fake moral "purity"! But of course, where is Steve's evidence that we are fake? Aren't empty or false accusations a pretty bad thing?
And he's the one who introduced the issue of FAKE purity. I was actually talking about REAL moral purity, which if you have it, excludes fakery of any kind.

\\AHA sees babies who could be saved, but refuses to do what's possible and necessary to save them. It merely says, "Best wishes!" then leaves them to die.\\

Steve can repeat this a thousand more times and it will be just as nonsensical then as it is now.

\\AHA might object that they do turn away some mothers from abortion clinics. But, of course, that's not an AHA distinctive. Prolifers have done that for decades. \\

Oh, so we DON'T actually just "leave babies to die". It appears that whatever is left of Steve's intellectual honesty at this point rose up to poke a hole through the darkness, and the admission is pretty damaging to his accusation.

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