The blog Sydney Anglican Heretics has apparently given this blog an award, 'the Baddeley Award', and has even named it after me (one presumes - I mean it could be after my cousin, who is a lot more famous, but that's probably unlikely). The award is for putting some effort into my posts where I indicate my problems with Creation Science (although it is looking like "Creationism" might be a term that that blog at least finds less problematic).
I'm a bit bemused to be the recipient of the inaugural award. I can't quite imagine Calvin giving Servetus an award for putting some effort into his heresy. Athanasius giving Arius an 'Arius' award for being the 'most improved' heretic also doesn't quite sit right.
Nonetheless, it looks like they're hoping to undertake some kind of response to what I've posted. I'm a firm believer that, by and large, one needs to hear two sides of an argument to draw even provisional conclusions, so, given that the name of the blog has already appeared in the comments (and that SAH even became aware of this blog, which I didn't think would happen), I was going to link the blog at the end of Part VII so people could have a read of the critiques as they are produced. It was with some misgiving, as I don't think this group is likely to do a particularly good job of it, which people might take as evidence that the arguments I've put forward are stronger than they might actually be. Nonetheless, some critique is better than none. So the name is now in the blog proper, not just the comments.
I would wait a while before going over to read it at this stage. At the moment the only response has been a post by "Neil Moore" trying to accuse me of being cultic. The reasons are:
- I control who can post on the blog (I won't allow SAH to post inflammatory comments here under a cloak of anonymity).
- I selectively use Scripture, 'to the exclusion of that which undermines his point'.
- I'm motivated by an overweening desire to defend the Diocese and Peter Jensen.
The only argument offered to support these accusations is a story about one Mark Kay's ability to reduce a woman university student to tears by his manner in criticising the current Archbishop of Sydney. It's classic ad hominem, and probably deserves an award of its own, as there's probably a difficulty rating in not just playing the man rather than the ball, but in trying to play the man by playing a completely disconnected woman.
It certainly is the case that I hold the Diocese and its leaders in esteem, including both the Jensens senior, and also others who are sometimes seen as their opposition within the Diocese. I'm not ashamed of that and, given the Bible's injunctions to hold leaders in honour, it's a bit disappointing that this is being seen as a defect. It's probably a sad reflection on church life generally, that such a feature would be considered cultic. Some of us find we can respect people and institutions deeply and yet feel free to dissent at points. It's sad to think that kind of freedom might not be open to others.
I would also suggest that writing some exploratory posts on an obscure and brand new blog is a strange way to try and defend the Diocese from the attacks of SAH. I don't think the Diocese needs defending anyway. SAH is, as I've said before, a bad reflection on creationism, and anonymous accusations don't warrant a defence. The posts are what I've said they are - a series of reflections that crystalised after an unfortunate experience on SAH. They aren't even particularly about SAH.
Hopefully there'll be something about the arguments I put forward in the future. But for the moment it seems I have graduated from heretic to award winning cultist. Bet the rest of you mere heretics out there are jealous. If SAH produces something significant I might take the time to interact with it here. But I think I'm only obligated to engage with their first post. It's just a shame that they began this way.
Edited: After much further reflection and prayer, and a number of communications from people who had visited the blog in question I have removed the link to the blog that was here originally. I originally ended my conversation with them (as I informed them) because I judged them to be the kind of people Paul describes (or people who would tolerate such people in the interests of having a coalition against us):
Titus 3:9-11 But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and strife and disputes about the Law, for they are unprofitable and worthless. Reject a factious man after a first and second warning, knowing that such a man is perverted and is sinning, being self-condemned.
1 Timothy 6:3-5 If anyone advocates a different doctrine and does not agree with sound words, those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine conforming to godliness, he is conceited and understands nothing; but he has a morbid interest in controversial questions and disputes about words, out of which arise envy, strife, abusive language, evil suspicions, and constant friction between men of depraved mind and deprived of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means of gain.
Of the comments I've received publicly and privately, every one, (even, in one case, someone who is a creationist) has made the same judgement of the people on that blog and their actions. It is not their ideas, but the rampant ungodliness of their actions that has caused complaint. In such a case, it is not simply a matter of openly comparing ideas. So I've removed the link, it's easy enough to find the blog if you really need to read them. It's a symbolic action to indicate my rejection of their claims to be serving Christ in their manner of operating. I'll again discharge my responsibility by saying: I recommend against visiting the blog, if all that's motivating you is idle curioristy. And do not comment on the blog, it just tempts them to more ungodliness.