A Response to an Internet Troll— Monty Collier (‘Red Beetle’)
Sometime around April 2020, Monty Collier contacted me via Facebook (FB) messenger. He appeared friendly, and he sent me links to some of his articles and books, which led to several discussions on the phone and on the internet. But I was seriously duped into believing that Monty was a sound Christian and I erroneously considered him to be a friend for a short time (estimated six months).
I. Collier’s (Article) Desperate
Attempt to Promote Book
During the interactions I had with Collier in the past, I started to realize, slowly but surely, that he is deceptive. In my opinion, Collier has a propensity to exaggerate, or he will blatantly lie or only tell half-truths to discredit men that he does not like, which affords him with opportunities to promote his shoddy books or videos. This can be seen in a recent article (March 2021) that Collier wrote titled, “Sonny Hernandez, Patrick Hines, and The Satanic Teachings of Cornelius Van Til,” which was posted in an on-line FB group called Presbyterian Research Center. I am not able to view the article or the comments in this group. But a friend of mine, who was part of this group, informed me that Collier wrote a hit-piece against me (see post), which was clearly a ploy to promote his book.
Of course, once I reviewed Collier’s benighted article, I was not surprised in the least bit to see that Collier took advantage of another opportunity to sell one of his books:
“You can get a copy of my book Double-Think: Refuting The Satanic Teachings Of Cornelius Van Til by clicking the link below: http://thebp.site/239833”
Collier’s article is proof that he likes to tell half-truths in order to discredit men that disagree with him, in order to bolster support for his so-called books. For example, Monty was correct in saying that I wrongly attributed an article to Clark (not in a theological journal or book, but in a Facebook post), which was written by Richard Willer Gray (Clark’s friend). But Collier failed to mention that in this same FB post (on my friend’s FB wall), I was corrected by a man who informed me that Richard Willer Gray was the author of the quote I cited, not Clark, and I did not deny that I inadvertently attributed an article to the wrong person, but I immediately acknowledged (“I stand corrected”) that I had wrongly applied the quote to Clark once I was corrected. Collier’s article also failed to recognize that once I was corrected, I immediately went to the initial comment where I inadvertently applied a quote to Clark, and I updated it before the entire FB post was taken down by my friend (snap-shots saved). Collier also failed to mention that in this same FB post, I explained that I inadvertently applied a quote to Clark that was written by Gray due to the fact that both of these men regarded Arminianism as the biblical gospel. Gray argued that, “…Arminianism is not another gospel but an inconsistent expression of the true gospel,” while Clark said, “Arminianism accepts the Bible, preaches the vicarious death of Christ, and believes in the Resurrection.” Monty, of course, intentionally left out all of this information from his hit-piece, because he was desperate to discredit me, given the fact that he argued that it “does not speak well of the scholarship” and that a doctor in theology should “have the simple training to correctly identify the author of an article.”
For context, there was a reason why I spoke negatively about Gordon Clark’s theology on a friend's FB wall. First, one of my friend's, who ardently rejects Arminianism, posted an article that disparaged Spurgeon for being tolerant of the autosoteric principles of Arminianism. Second, there are many in the sovereign grace camp, so to speak, that follow my friend’s FB page and are myopic towards anyone that tolerates Arminianism, yet many (not all) in this camp refer to themselves as, “Clarkians.” Thus, I was making the point that it is hypocritical for any sovereign grace believer to accost anyone that appreciates or cites Spurgeon, who was tolerant of Arminianism, but simultaneously appreciate and cite Gordon Clark, who was also tolerant of Arminianism.
Regarding Clark, I have greatly benefited from his teachings in the past on theological determinism and predestination. But I appreciated Clark’s work before I knew that he believed in a two-person Christ (Nestorianism), and before I knew that he was seriously double-minded on Arminianism. For example, Clark accused Arminians of taking one or more steps "...backward toward Rome," (see What Do Presbyterians Believe, emphasis mine), but he also argued that, "All sincere Arminians are predestinated, all persevere in grace, and are perfectly sanctified in heaven…” (Clark to the Directors of Covenant House, March 1, 1948, emphasis mine). Again, I have appreciated his work in the past, but I cannot, according to my conscience, support or recommend Clark.
Collier also argued that I assured him that I used to be a “Van Tilian,” but then questioned the validity of my claim because I have written two books on some (not all) of Van Til’s teachings that are still published. Interestingly, when I was a friend of Monty's for a short time, my books on Van Til’s apologetic were still published. Also, Monty’s article, of course, failed to cite my website which clearly has a disclaimer at the bottom of the page that says, “Special Note: I no longer support Van Til's teachings,” and he failed to even do a simple search on the web to see that a Presbyterian pastor had posted (publicly) this snap shot below (December, 2020), which proves that I have in fact (publicly) departed from supporting Van Til.
Moreover, in the same manner that I have appreciated some of Clark’s work in the past, I have also appreciated some of Van Til’s arguments also. Van Til’s writings can be very difficult to understand, and there are many debates on several of his convictions that are questionable. Monty Collier may pretend to be the expert on Van Til, but he is an internet troll who desperately wants to promote his book, and is no expert on his [Van Til] work. Nonetheless, I stopped supporting Van Til once I discovered his view on the Trinity, and his teachings on paradoxes and contradictions in theology. But in the two books I had written on Van Til’s approach to professing atheists, I did not show support for Van Til’s view on the Trinity (“…the whole Godhead, is one person”), nor did I teach that the Bible is full of contradictions. I wrote these two books on Van Til’s approach to professing atheists to simply demonstrate that only the Christian worldview can account for the preconditions of intelligibility. I felt this helped me when I witnessed to professing atheists.
Furthermore, this section of Collier’s article needs to be addressed:
Last year, before the publication of my book Double-Think: Refuting The Satanic Teachings Of Cornelius Van Til, Dr. Hernandez called me several times begging me to change the title of my book. He was very upset that I would call Van Til's teachings satanic in the very title of my book. I thought such a concern rather strange coming from a person who told me he thought that Van Til's teachings were satanic and heretical. However, seeing that Dr. Hernandez is still peddling the teachings of Van Til on Amazon, rather than posting a retraction of his erroneous support of that heretic to his Amazon page (warning his fans of Van Til's satanic teachings)--maybe those strange phone calls make a bit more sense!
Collier’s assertion that I called several times “begging” him to change the title of his book is a classic example of how he exaggerates or blatantly lies to discredit men that he does not like. In a phone conversation, I remember vividly asking Monty, “do you think that a vitriolic title (“…Satanic Teachings Of Cornelius Van Til”) might lead people away from buying it?” This question was meant to help Collier have wide readership for his book. But Collier apparently has taken that question to mean that I was literally “begging” him to change the title. Maybe Collier may think that this kind of exaggeration or lie makes him feel important or it gives him purpose in this life, but all it proves is that he is a liar and therefore needs to rely on a pathetic argument to make a point.
Of course, Monty claims that I called him several times and was literally “begging” him to change the title of his book, and he claims that I was “upset” that he would call “Van Til's teachings satanic,” and Collier claims that he felt those calls he had with me were “rather strange,” yet he fails to mention that he asked me if I would be interested in writing a preface to his book:
At one point, I was honored that Monty asked me to write the preface to his book, but as I stated earlier, I was seriously duped into believing that Monty was a sound Christian and I erroneously considered him to be a friend. Nonetheless, I declined his request.
Up to this point, one can easily see that Monty’s melodramatic arguments are not only desperate, but also pathetic. This is expected from an internet nomad. The following profile, in my opinion, will help you know what you can expect if you encounter Collier on social media.
II. Profile of an Internet Troll
Initially, Monty introduces himself to professing Christians by sending them a private message (via social media) and will appear friendly. This is one of the ploys or used car sales tactics that Monty uses to promote his shoddy books or videos.
Monty is not only an internet nomad, but he is also a coward. He refers to men that disagree with his teachings as “papist whores” or he will regard their doctrines as “Satanic,” but is well known for blocking and banning many who simply disagree with him on social media.
Monty desperately wants to sound intellectual, and likes to let people know that he knows a few Latin words (“Sola Fide” or “Sola Scriptura”), or he tells people that disagree with him that they need to take a class in logic. But this does not bolster his arguments or prove the points that he tries so hard to make; all it proves is that Monty is really good at psycho-babbling and is extremely desperate to sound intellectual.
Monty is a theological hypocrite. He is known for accusing protestants that disagree with him of being “papists,” yet Monty consistently and favorably cites his idol, Gordon Clark, who accused Arminians of taking one or more steps "...backward toward Rome," (see What Do Presbyterians Believe, emphasis mine), but he also argued that, "All sincere Arminians are predestinated, all persevere in grace, and are perfectly sanctified in heaven…” (Clark to the Directors of Covenant House, March 1, 1948, emphasis mine).
Monty accuses men that disagree with him of being “papist whores,” yet he has an affinity for a man [Clark] that believed Arminians drifted towards Rome and were saved.
A simple review of the internet will reveal that Monty is a cyber troll who likes to heresy hunt, so to speak, but appears to remain silent over the fact that another one of his idols, John Robbins, whom he repeatedly and favorably cites in his benighted works, affirmed a two-person Christ (John Robbins, “Jesus Christ was and is both God and man, a divine person and a human person…”, see the Incarnation by Gordon Clark). Affirming a two-person Christ is a heresy that is called Nestorianism.
Interestingly, redbeetle.wordpress.com (retrieved on March 27, 2021) says, “My name is Monty Collier, and I am the teaching elder at Geneva Dutch Calvinist Church, Kingsport, Tennessee.” Also, in August 2020, Collier implied that he was part of a growing church. He wrote to me the following: “Our church is becoming invigorated and people [sic] more people are coming to our studies and worship.” “Pray God is causing an awakening here in these troubled days.” It’s amazing how Collier writes so many articles on FB (publicly) and he posts videos on YouTube to promote his books (publicly), but this supposed elder appears to be very quiet about promoting his so-called church and where the services are held weekly (publicly). How can one attend Monty’s so-called church if there does not appear to be a website or an address located anywhere on the internet? One would think that a supposed elder in a so-called growing church would have information easily available somewhere on the internet so people would know where to attend his services every week, or there would be members in this so-called church that talk about it publicly, trying to get the word out. Is Collier a self-appointed elder who periodically meets with his family or friends for Bible studies and singing hymns and calls it a church? Collier’s claims of being an elder of a so-called church (legitimate) are suspect.