Why You Shouldn’t Read James White’s Blog

Well, actually you should read it because Jeff Downs posts there once in a while and Jeff is the consumate data miner.  If there’s something worth looking at–be it a new book, an online lecture, or a journal article–then Jeff has the skinny on it.  He’s also a good guy, even if an ardent defender of White. ;-)  But apparently unless one has read White’s books, listened to his debates, or researched his teaching and/or ministry over the last 20 years then they can’t truly understand the context in which he says anything.  I’ve seen him complain about such things more times than I can count*, the most recent being in his post today:

2) Do not expect the Golden Rule to be applied to you if you are an evangelical. If you are going to address someone like Ehrman, you better do your homework. Read his works, listen to his lectures, study his articles. If you do not, you have nothing to say. However, anyone can comment on what you say as an evangelical without worrying about anything you have ever written or taught over twenty or more years. Just remember, the context of the evangelical is irrelevant; the context of the star-level scholar is all important. Also, it is fair to assume the evangelical believer is ignorant of anything you wish to attribute to them, even if you have no idea whether they are in fact ignorant of those subjects or not.

I suppose that what he writes on his blog is insufficient to make his point because to hear him tell it, others have to have a lot of foundational knowledge to understand what he says in any given post.  I’m sorry, but this is just too much work.  Why should we have to read The Potter’s Freedom or The King James Only Controversy to understand what White writes on his blog?  Does anyone else complain in the same manner about being misunderstood and misrepresented because others don’t have the necessary background info to properly interpret their blog musings?  I can understand if the post was specifically on a book that he has written, but just because he’s written books on the various subjects he discusses doesn’t make them necessary reading to comment on the content of said discussions.  I think Joel McDurmon did a fine job pointing this in both his American Vision article and his radio dialogue with White.    


*For other examples see his 11/3/08 announcment of the Dividing Line in which he says:

William Albrecht has promised to call in, so, we will see if he has bothered to read any of our books, listen to any of our debates, and if he understands the very foundation of our assertion that there is no DIVINE distinction between latria and dulia.

Or an email exchange with a Mormon named Gary Novak dated 12/10/98 in which White says:

I’m sorry, genuine dialogue? I’m sorry, but while I have often bent over backwards to attempt to believe such offers, given your past correspondence, do you really think I have any logical reason to believe you wish to engage in “genuine dialogue”?

If, upon reading _The Forgotten Trinity_, and, say, _Is the Mormon My Brother?_, and maybe something really challenging, like, _Grieving: Our Path Back to Peace_, you wish to engage in “genuine dialogue,” please let me know.

Such examples could be multiplied many times over.


30 thoughts on “Why You Shouldn’t Read James White’s Blog

  1. Nancy: But who falls into that category?

    Jeremiah: I suppose it could be.

    Owen: Well, I’ve read some, just not enough to know what he’s talking about at any given time according to him.

    Chuck: No, because there’s no “we,” it’s only “me.”

    Jeremiah: Funny how no one gets all up in arms when I decide to disgree with say Jim West or someone without the fan base of White.

  2. Nick: I dislike White’s bowties and his lava lamps. Don’t faint from the shock.

    Esteban: Moises Silva was wrong once. He thought he made a mistake but turns out, he was right.

  3. Nick: I believe I have been consistent in that regard, case in point my comment on the Deacon circumcision post. Remember what Jesus said, “Blessed are the cheese makers.”

  4. Esteban,

    Have I ever claimed to have an original thought?

    But come to think of it, Norris is never around when Silva is lecturing, and Silva is never around when Norris is doing spinning back kicks. Hmm….

  5. Chuck: While we’re on his attire, I must say that the kilt thing has always been a bot on the annoying side.

    Jeremiah: I wasn’t aware that people commented on that post after me (since mine is always the final word!).

  6. I think that your method of disagreeing with James White is entirely inconsistent with your worldview. In fact, I think that your worldview is utterly dependant on borrowing pieces of James White’s worldview.

    You say that “White says…”

    But clearly without believing what White believes the very concept of “White says…” is completely meaningless. Therefore, unless you can demonstrate how you can say “White says…” without borrowing from the framework of White’s worldview, you must recant your disagreement.

  7. Nick: Thanks for the background on the Hitler thing, which I’d never bothered to learn.

    Of course, Jim West will be by shortly to tell us it must be wrong because it’s from Wiki….

  8. I think that your method of disagreeing with James White is entirely inconsistent with your worldview. In fact, I think that your worldview is utterly dependant [sic] on borrowing pieces of James White’s worldview.

    What the…?

  9. >>
    I think that your method of disagreeing with James White is entirely inconsistent with your worldview. In fact, I think that your worldview is utterly dependant [sic] on borrowing pieces of James White’s worldview.<<

    What the…?

    Please tell me that was a joke.

  10. Jeff, were you saying “please tell me that was a joke” to me or to Geoff?

    If me, then my actually though was something like, “What in the world does this have to do with anything?”

    If Geoff, then I hope it was.

  11. Sorry Mike, I was referring what you quoted and should have just quoted that.

    I’m sure he was joking. He’s probably like me and doesn’t use smilies, plus it would kind of spoil it to do that. That was a very clever comment by him.

  12. Nick: I hope so – and that’s nice percentage.

    Yes, we all need more Esteban in our lives

    Jeff: No prob. As you know, I do struggle to pick up on written humor when its subtle.

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