Skip to comments.Bad “Howse” Keeping
Posted on 10/06/2010 9:52:15 AM PDT by topcat54
For the past two weeks, I have let you in on a debate Ive been having with Brannon Howse of Worldview Weekend conferences (see here , here , and here ). I objected to the numerous articles that populate his site that deal with end-of-the-world issues. I described this preoccupation as worldview schizophrenia . Its difficult for me to understand how anyone can claim to be teaching Christian worldview while at the same time arguing that there is incontrovertible evidence that the end of the world is upon us. Brannons so-called response was one of the worst examples of critical thinking I have ever read. It was filled with red herrings, ad hominem and straw man attacks, and riddled with factual errors, a surprising piece of work from someone who is in the business of pointing out the errors in contrary worldviews at Worldview Weekend conferences.
Ive received emails from people who have tried to post objections to Brannons response to my articles. Heres one of them: Gary, I tried to post a comment on Brannon Howses site today after reading your article about the frustrations with trying to get him to directly respond to your concerns. I was respectful and did not even link to your site. He refused to post it and sent me [this] terse email
We are not going to promote Gary DeMars website. We are in the top 15,000 of websites in America. We are not going to direct our traffic to his silly website. Brannon Howse].The emailer continues: I just wrote back. Here is what I wrote to [Brannon Howse].
I obviously dont always agree with you . . . , but I do thank you for pointing out when the emperor has no clothes and for working so hard trying to remove blinders. Its a difficult job. My comment was very respectful and did not include a link to Garys site. I only asked you to be fair and honest in your criticism, addressing directly what he wrote. Here is what your feedback page says: We would like to post your feedback, but please keep your feedback short and clean. All feedback will be reviewed before it is posted. We encourage healthy debating but will not accept feedback with personal attacks. Commenting on a persons public statements, actions and writings is not considered a personal attack. Please limit your feedback to less than 750 words. Comments written in ALL CAPS will not be posted. You are not being truthful when you say you encourage healthy debating. By your silly response to me you only confirm what Gary wrote, when you have a chance to directly address and refute what he said rather than foster misunderstanding and misrepresentation, something that is reprehensible for any Christian, particularly a leader who purports to teach discernment.To confirm my original criticism, the following appeared on American Visions Facebook page:
You know, Gary DeMar has written things supportive of Glenn Beck, and I have commented on the American Vision Facebook page with my concerns and complaints about that. They did not refuse to post my comment and responded to me in a fair way. To characterize the very respectable ministry of American Vision as silly because of its support for postmillennialism, a view held by many respectable and important people in the Christian Church (as I mentioned in my comment, Isaac Watts, Jonathan Edwards, R. C. Sproul), is to do the very thing you criticizedportray as enemies those who are really fighting on the same side.
I am very disappointed in your response, one which is full of pride and not the humility which is a mark of true leadership. Apparently you only allow comments from those who agree with you. Thats too bad.
The first W[orldview] W[eekend] I went to a couple of years ago was all about worldview, and almost nothing about the rapture. The second was mostly about end-time conspiracies. I never went to another one but I kept reading their emails, and they have become more and more obsessed with the end times. I cancelled my subscription for the emails. No need to read the same nonsense that weve been reading for a century now. Its sad Howse refuses to listen to common sense.Heres another one:
[T]his dispensational theology has really helped to cripple and neuter our evangelical churches. It is also the reason many young people are leaving the church. This theology gives them no future hopeonly escape via the mythical rapture. They dont buy it!American Vision is in the teaching business. One of the things we teach is how to think critically. I know that many of you dont like Christians arguing with Christians. If we dont get things right, then how can we expect the world to get things right? The critical apparatus that we use with non-believers should not be any less honest when we deal with those of our own Christian household. As I pointed out in an earlier article, I addressed these concerns to Brannon privately. The last straw was when he posted a 1987 article by Dave Hunt on Dominion Theology. It was poorly argued in 1987, and it was poorly argued in 2010.
If Brannon Howse wants to be an advocate for a biblical worldview, then he needs to do a better job in his analysis of those who point out some critical points to him. He needs to be honest and accurate in his responses.
 Actually, I have several websites. Vision to Americas website is of today ranked 3,742 in the United States, while American Visions ranking is 39,935. For Brannon, a site is only worthy if its ranking is high. (The low number, as in golf, is the better number. Google and Facebook are 1 and 2.) Given Brannons logic, Ligonier (22,765), Summit (362,453), Worldview Academy (not even high enough to be ranked), and Vision Forum Ministries (303,491), highly respected worldview ministries, are also silly websites because they are not at the 15,000 mark. Very poor reasoning considering that the atheist Richard Dawkins website is ranked 14,523 in the United States, nearly 500 ticks better than Worldview Weekends ranking!
"For these are the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled." (Luke 21:22)
I find it encouraging to watch the doomsayers losing their credibility, as they engage in public acts of reprehensible dishonesty. The internet is blowing their cover, the Lord rules, let the nations rejoice!
Folks like Brannon Howse are the “apologists” that dominate American Christian culture these days. There thinking is largely saturated with erroneous dispensational gobbledygook because they choose to make their bed with other end-time fakirs. They cannot make a cogent argument when their presuppositions are called into question.
The Church can thank men and women like Mr. Howse for its poor condition.
I hear all the computers are going to crash on 1/1/2000.
That describes my own experience. I also canceled my subscription because their pessimistic dispensationalism was trumping their call to be salt and light to the culture.
Eschatology (future events) IMO should be an outgrowth of our beliefs re discipleship and evangelism (present events). IMO it should not be the other way around. I was persuaded, years ago, to change my eschatological view from Premillennial to Postmillennial because I couldn't justify how Christians could be "victorious" today and simultaneously rushing towards a Great Tribulation tomorrow. Ultimately, for me the issue came down to pretty much just one question: which is the most powerful event in history - Adam's Fall, or Christ's Redemption? I came to believe it's the latter - and because of it, I switched my eschatology. IMO Dispensationalists believe the former (Adam's Fall) is the more powerful of the two.
Now most Americans (but not all) approach the issue from the POV of Scofield-flavored Dispensational Premillennialism, and they would say "You don't polish the brass on a sinking ship!", as did evangelist Dwight L. Moody in the 19th century. Their view is that the culture will not (cannot) be redeemed by anything - not even by a wholesale repentance and conversion of the population. Nothing short of the physical return of Christ will have any lasting impact on the culture, and thus the most a redeemed man can hope for is a ticket out of here. Such thinking would have us believe that the Great Commission commands us to "go ye therefore and make converts of all nations".
Now if your eschatology teaches that Christians shouldn't "polish the brass on a sinking ship", you will probably discount or avoid altogether other ship-related skills as hull & sail repair, mastering sea-sickness, and simple navigation. What good is it to ask people to repent and convert, and not prepare them for how to live afterward? The Great Commission commands us to make disciples, not converts. Disciples should be taught behaviors beyond how to make more converts. A man cannot repent of his old behavior, unless he has a new set of behaviors to substitute for them! And can those new behaviors be expected to "accomplish" anything in his life? What about in his children's lives? What about in the culture around him?
If we extrapolate Dispensationalism backwards, we come to the conclusion that living one's life for Christ in any era doesn't add up to jack squat statistically or sociologically, whereas living one's life for Satan has a statistically measurable, progressively successful effect on society in every era. Even if the church manages to actually achieve a net growth in the number of believers, Dispensational Premillennialism tells us that those believers won't accomplish anything that impacts, let alone redeems, the culture around them. Even if their own lives are transformed, they won't have any effect on the culture in any statistically meaningful way, long-term. For dispensationalism to be true, Christians will be losers in every area of culture and history. There's no way for the world to move inexorably towards dispensationalism's "Great Tribulation" unless this is true (classic Premillennialism actually has a way around this, but Dispensationalism IMO does not). The Gospel offers no hope for man or his world, beyond a supernatural "get out of jail free!" card.
"You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men."Those of us holding the POV of Postmillennialism and the Reformation would say that the blood of Christ is capable of redeeming everything affected by the Fall. Post-redemption, we believe that the Bible gives us guidelines in how to behave, as redeemed individuals, in every area of life. We expect that redemption progressively flows outward from the repentant/obedient soul, the impact compounded by the number of repentant/obedient souls, to ultimately effect a positive change in culture and politics and art and everything produced by man. So long as Christians are obedient, they will positively impact the culture around them, and the long-term effect will be a statistically measurable redemption/restoration of their world, prior to the physical, literal return of Christ.
-- Matthew 5:13
The LORD said to my Lord,
Sit at My right hand,
Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.
-- Psalm 110:1
Dispensational adventulre stories with monsters, disaster and boogymen sell lots of books and that appears to be Brandon’s objective now.
My goodness — if publishing and selling books is such a highly profitable activity, I need to get a few in print!
Go for it .