Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour (Exodus 20:16)
James White is certainly infamous for his internet behavior. Historically, James is predictable. He calls men out that he disagrees with. And when they respond, he will either play victim or decry their rejoinders as slander. James appears hostile towards anyone that takes Islam out of context, but has no problem taking other professing Christians out of context.
In 2017, Megiddo Radio published a video titled, "James White's Poor Behaviour Online." In this video, Paul Flynn stated that "James White bullies people on the internet"; "he sets his people after them"; and "he tries to provoke people." Interestingly enough, Flynn also argued that when individuals respond to White's provocations, White will then take snap shots of their arguments and post them on his social media accounts. I could not agree more. In fact, I have been writing on this exact issue for some time now.
In a recent social media post (April 3, 2019), James decided to insert himself into a discussion surrounding Reforming America Ministries (RAM) that was led by an internet warrior and liberal Calvinist who is notable for making bold comments about others on the internet, but uses a historical theologian’s name (Francis Turretin) that is not his own so he can remain anonymous. In this aforementioned post, James appeared to have concern that some well-respected Reformed preachers are associated with RAM. To desperately make a point, James did exactly what I expected he would do:
Before I respond to James White's name calling ("ungracious"), melodramatic comments ("damaging movement") and false witness ("doctrinal perfectionism"), remember what Paul Flynn stated: "James tries to provoke people," and when they respond, he will "snap shot" their responses. As expected, James did just that:
It is interesting that James argues that RAM is "ungracious" because we are somehow spearheading a "damaging movement" on "doctrinal perfectionism" as a prerequisite for regeneration. So there is no equivocation on what James intended to say, take a look at the following comments:
Of course, James cannot respond to any retort against his arguments without calling it an "attack," but interestingly enough, he makes it patently clear that he is accusing me of demanding "doctrinal perfectionism as a prerequisite for regeneration." Let the record be known that I have never argued this lie that James is perpetuating. As previously noted, James is desperate to denigrate others that radically disagree with him. Therefore, bearing a false witness (“doctrinal perfectionism”), name calling (“ungracious”), and melodramatic comments (“damaging movement”) do not prove the point that James is desperately trying to make. All it proves is that James will degenerate to the level of lying so he can denigrate others that radically disagree with his questionable practices.
Here are several concerning issues that I have with James White's lie that I "demand doctrinal perfectionism as a prerequisite for regeneration":
First, most followers of James White are aware that he welcomed Dr. Yasir Qadhi, a Jihadi Imam, into a church, unchallenged, where he blasphemed the Trinity, while James referred to him as his "mentor" and implied that consistent Islam is a religion of peace. In this interfaith disaster, James asked Dr. Qadhi to "produce an hour long Youtube video that we can understand" (Time Stamp: 1:11:00), but has made no recent attempt to ask me to clarify my position before he publicly propagated the lie that I believe in "doctrinal perfectionism as a prerequisite for regeneration." Nonetheless, I have made several videos on-line to defend the Gospel and to make it patently clear that “perfectionism” is not my argument. Yet, James sensed a kindred spirit in the Muslim and even referred to him as his ”mentor,” but habitually finds ways to denigrate RAM.
Second, sometime in either 2017 or 2018, Mr. White asked me a public question via Facebook regarding my position paper on Arminianism:
I responded with the following article (see full article) which proves that "doctrinal perfectionism" is an argument I do not affirm [excerpt]:
Your question falsely assumes that I am arguing that the criteria or standard to determine if an individual is saved is their ability to articulate theological conviction with precision. This is not my position. The “semi-educated ol' preacher” you described, that hates Calvinism, may still preach the Gospel accurately and simply, as Christ Himself said, in John 6:47: “…he that believes in me has eternal life.” The preacher may say this and a person may believe this to be the truth, by God’s grace, and thus trust Christ. However, this does not mean that if asked to articulate and express the content of the Gospel, that the “semi-educated ol' preacher” you described would do so correctly. It is not his view of the gospel that saves—it is the Gospel (emphasis mine).
It would be impossible for James to argue that he never saw my response to his question that he asked me via Facebook. He spent nearly an hour discussing it on his so called "dividing line" episode.
Third, in my book titled, "High Calvinism," I address the "perfect knowledge" allegation, and I make it abundantly clear that I reject this lie that has been made against me:
Argument 6: “Does an individual have to have perfect knowledge to be saved? Also, are you saying that you have perfect knowledge? Because if you don’t, then you have no right to tell Arminians they are wrong.”
Response: Your first question appears to be a straw-man. Never once have I argued that perfect knowledge of doctrine was a condition of salvation. Perfect knowledge does not save. The Gospel saves. This will be the doctrine that Christians will lavish the most. If an individual is regenerate, they will not adamantly reject it while simultaneously affirming the essential tenets of Arminianism [viz. false doctrine that reviles and deviates from the Gospel]. And that is because the “sheep” hear the voice of Christ and they follow Him—not reject Him.
Your second question is frivolous. As a sinful creature, you know that I do not possess perfect knowledge. If you are trying to prove a point that I have no right to refute the errors of Arminianism, because I am capable of error, you have failed miserably. This is akin to telling all Christians that they cannot refute anything that is erroneous because they are all capable of error too. Based on that worldview, Mormons, Muslims, Buddhists, professing atheists, and Jehovah Witnesses’ are free to propagate their lies without any fear of Christians repudiating their heresy. And that is because you said that Christians are not allowed to expose error because they are capable of error too.
As I have stated on many occasions, Arminianism is not the Gospel. No matter how desperate you are to justify one of your Arminian friends or family members, the Arminian gospel will never deliver one soul into heaven. That is because it is a cheap grace, false gospel, that is powerless to save (pg. 82).
Fourth, one of my close friends, Richard Tory McDonald, who shepherds a Reformed Baptist Church in NY had written an article that was published by RAM titled, "A Response to Moderate Calvinists: Only The True Gospel Saves!" In this article, Pastor McDonald cites me at the conclusion which proves that I do not believe in "perfect knowledge as a prerequisite for regeneration":
When you call someone a “brother,” you are sending them a misleading message that they affirm the same Gospel as you. Arminians affirm contra-causal freedom and universal atonement—both of which cannot be found in Scripture—that no prophet of God, nor Paul or Christ ever proclaimed. And no Christian should ever anathematize an Arminian, but instead, should witness to them in lieu of calling them “brother.” Of course, moderates will argue that men who hold to this position are “perfect knowledge advocates.” But they appear to be refuting an argument that I have never made. To settle this dispute, one would need to appeal to Scripture, not superstition. Here is my point.
John 10:5 states that "the sheep" will not follow the voice of strangers, but will flee. John used a future indicative for the word “flee" because the sheep "know not the voice of strangers." And in John 10:27, there are three present tense indicatives to make it clear that "the sheep will" hear, know, and follow their substitute and Savior. This is a statement of fact that "the sheep" are hearing, knowing, and following their Master in actual time. I am not advocating that a person must be able to articulate theology with precision. Liberal Calvinists love to accuse me of this. I am arguing that it is impossible for "the sheep" to follow the false doctrine of strangers (who teach free-will and universal atonement), and simultaneously reject the truth of sound doctrine that Christ preached (election and particular atonement). John 10 concurs.
If one disagrees with my position, they would need to prove from Scripture how an Arminian—one who affirms universal atonement and libertarian freedom—is a Christian by showing where universal atonement and free-will are in the Bible or how they are essentials of the Gospel. Also, one would need to prove from John 10 how an Arminian can reject the voice of the Savior (who taught election and particular atonement), and follow the voice of strangers (who teach free-will and universal atonement). Sadly, all I have seen thus far are begging the question responses, appealing to ignorance or popular teachers to justify one’s position (emphasis mine).
Moreover, I created a two hour long video that addressed my position in full detail regarding Armininianism and moderate Calvinism. And I made it a point to address the "perfect knowledge" argument which again, proves that I do not believe in "perfect knowledge as a prerequisite for regeneration" as White has alleged.
Furthermore, it is evident that Mr. White and I do not agree on Arminians being "brothers in Christ." What is James' position on Arminianism? Well, he calls men like Dr. Michael Brown his brother in Christ despite the fact that Brown affirms doctrines that are antithetical to the essentials of the Gospel (Time Stamp: 26:00-1:00:11). And James refers to Brown as his brother despite the fact that Brown is a leading charismatic heretic that is infamously known for screaming "fire, fire, fire" during his anti-biblical, "Brownsville Revival":
But what is my position on Arminianism? There are no Arminian Bible verses. No prophet of God, nor Paul, nor Christ ever proclaimed semi-pelagian doctrine. So when I meet an Arminian, I do not anathematize them. I witness to them. And I do not refer to them as brothers in Christ. If I did, I would be misleading them to believe that they affirm the same Gospel as I do when they clearly do not. Instead, I love them by declaring the true Gospel to them. The Gospel is mighty to save! And I believe that God can save them. True love warns.
Of course, moderate Calvinism is popular today. That is why James will receive a lot of “likes” on social media for calling his popular charismatic heretic friend a “brother in Christ.” He can have it. That is his reward. I will witness to Arminians, not call them brothers. True love does not compromise. Again, true love warns.
In closing, very respectfully to James, I do not find anything scholarly or even remotely interesting about his defense of Arminians being brothers in Christ. His position on Arminians being brothers in Christ is not Christ-like, it is compromising. That is why I would debate him anytime on this topic. If he is bold enough to denigrate RAM on social media, let's see if he is bold enough to publicly defend Arminians as legitimate brothers in Christ, despite the fact that they reject essentials of the faith. I am open to any kind of debate format: Public, internet, moderated, non-moderated, or even a public discussion on this matter with agreed upon guidelines for conduct, to ensure good order and discipline. A debate on this topic would be much more edifying than what James historically does:
– Step 1: James will typically instigate arguments by calling men out that disagree with him, or by taking subtle jabs at individuals that he does not like. But when someone responds, he will further the dispute with childish conceits on the internet.
– Step 2: Next, James will run to his social media diary (Facebook, Twitter) to “incite” his followers so they will bombast individuals that disagree with him, or so he can play victim to protect his popularity.
– Step 3: On social media, James will accuse anyone that disagrees with him of cultivating a hit-piece against him, slander, being childish, judging from afar, yellow journalism, or he will mock them over grammar, or simply call their arguments imbecilic.
– Step 4: Lastly, James will host a 1-2 hour dividing line episode so he can arrogantly mock or ridicule his opponents. During this time, James will inform the populace that he will easily refute all of the arguments made against him, which is interesting in my opinion, because a child can refute arguments, especially when no one is debating them back.