Saturday, September 19, 2009

One of James White's Criticisms of Molinism

Often James White points out that Molinism came from the Jesuits, whose founder, Ignatius of Loyola, was on a mission to combat Protestantism in general and the denial of free will in particular. While Molinism has some roots in the church fathers and the scholastics of the middle ages, it certainly was was first articulated and systematized using the scholastic method by the Jesuits. So while White's intent seems to be 'poisoning the well', his claims seem to have some basis. Should this be a concern for Molinists? I don't think so; what's interesting here is not Ignatius' intention but rather his method. Ignatius attempted to strengthen Catholic countries via education, so he help found schools and universities. Molinism is the result of intense study and serious reflection upon the issues related the God's foreknowledge and human freedom. The three early Jesuits most commonly associated with Molinism, Molina, Bellarmine and Suarez, were all unquestionably highly educated and bright. While reading Suarez, it's hard to not get the impression that the man read everything and I haven't seen a painting of him, I picture him as having an enormous egg where most people have a head. So throwing out Molinism because of it's association with Jesuits is a mistake for those who take education seriously.

13 comments:

Jnorm888 said...

Also, don't forget that Molinism was givin a hard time in Roman Catholicism.

Just as Calvinists charge Arminians as being semi-pelagian, certain schools of thought within Roman Catholicism charged the Molinists as being semi-pelagian. So they didn't have an easy time within RC. They had to not only theologically fight protestant calvinists/reformed, but they had to also theologically fight others within Roman Catholicism as well.

Oh, by the way, A Calvinist by the name of Rhoderick took up your offer, and he made a few responses in defense of calvinism.

http://holyculture.net/forum/showthread.php?t=39467&page=4



Take care and God Bless

Did you know that both John Calvin and the founder of the Jesuits both went to the University of Paris around the same time? Well give or take some years.....and they probably went to different schools within the University.....but yeah, I found that ironic.









ICXC NIKA

Jnorm888 said...

Oh, the Jesuits were the ones mostly responsible in getting a good number of EO to submit to the Bishop of Rome.....and this is why you have different kinds of eastern rite Catholics, so their intent was seen as a bad thing to alot of EO, but dispite that fact, their theology is still a whole lot closer to EO.

So eventhough their intent was to get everyone to submit to Rome, that doesn't mean their form of free will theology was wrong because of that. I tend to agree with a huge chunk of Molinism......eventhough the Jesuits were out to make EO submit to Rome.

So yeah, James white was trying to poison the well.







ICXC NIKA

bossmanham said...

White's anti-Catholicism and anti-Arminianism gets tiring.

The Seeking Disciple said...

It seems White has a problem with Molina but not with Augustine who is more Catholic than Molina.

I like White for the most part. I agree with him on a number of apologetic issues and his criticism of the Catholic Church is warrented but I don't like the fact that he doesn't change his tone when he disagrees with Arminians. He seems to place Arminians on the same level as Catholics or cults instead of being brothers in Christ. This debate (Arminianism vs. Calvinism) is an in-house debate. May we use godly language when debating and love those whom we disagree (2 Timothy 2:24-25).

natamllc said...

The Seeking Disciple, besides not seeking Him "first", as He sought you out, you make a good point at the end of your remarks.

We, who are True Believers, are so by God's Will and not our own.

Infighting is a disgrace and brings cause for blasphemy!

I acknowledge your citations and take them to heart!

Thanks for being forthright about it!

Where "True Believers" must take a stand is along the lines of these other words of Paul the Apostle:::>

Gal 1:6 I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel--
Gal 1:7 not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.
Gal 1:8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.
Gal 1:9 As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.
Gal 1:10 For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.

There is no retreating from the Gospel of the Kingdom. To do so is to be complicit in the slavery of others and maybe unawares?

It is best to stand therefore as admonished by Paul here:

Gal 2:4 Yet because of false brothers secretly brought in--who slipped in to spy out our freedom that we have in Christ Jesus, so that they might bring us into slavery--
Gal 2:5 to them we did not yield in submission even for a moment, so that the truth of the gospel might be preserved for you.


And not fall into this here for a lack of His Love:

Gal 5:14 For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: "You shall love your neighbor as yourself."
Gal 5:15 But if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another.


And when we come across such vitriol and virulence we are mandated with these words as well:::>

Gal 6:1 Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted.
Gal 6:2 Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
Gal 6:3 For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself.

Robert said...

Hello Dan,

"Often James White points out that Molinism came from the Jesuits, whose founder, Ignatius of Loyola, was on a mission to combat Protestantism in general and the denial of free will in particular. While Molinism has some roots in the church fathers and the scholastics of the middle ages, it certainly was was first articulated and systematized using the scholastic method by the Jesuits. So while White's intent seems to be 'poisoning the well', his claims seem to have some basis. Should this be a concern for Molinists?"

I used to like White when he was focused on non-Christian cults. But ever since he "converted" to five point calvinism he now engages in inaccurate comments and anti-Arminian rants that are embarassing.

Regarding the claim that "Molinism came from the Jesuits" isn't that the **genetic fallacy**?? The source of a claim is not what makes it true or false. So it really doesn't matter even if Molinism had its source from the Jesuits: what is important is whether or not it is true. And of course that issue is highly debateable. :-)

Robert

Odeliya said...

If I may summarize the wise comments above in one succinct, polite and ladylike sentence : James Wight is one huge pain in the neck.

Blessings,
Odeliya.

Godismyjudge said...

Jnorm,

Thanks for the heads up. I will check out the response on holyculture.

That's interesting about the Jesuits and the EOC.

God be with you,
Dan

Godismyjudge said...

Thanks Boss. The man is relentless.

God be with you,
Dan

Godismyjudge said...

That's a good point Roy. To an extent it detracts from some of the really good stuff White is doing.

God be with you,
Dan

Godismyjudge said...

Thanks Robert. Yep, Molinism is debatable, as are OT and Calvinism.

God be with you,
Dan

Godismyjudge said...

You have a great way with words Odeliya!

God be with you,
Dan

Kevin Jackson said...

Hi Dan, Off topic, but just wanted to say thanks for the article today about church history and Calvinism. It was excellent.