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Hip and Thigh: Smiting Theological Philistines with a Great Slaughter. Judges 15:8

Monday, October 13, 2008

25 years of Alpha and Omega Ministries

So James White is celebrating 25 years of ministry with Alpha and Omega Ministries.

I think I have recounted at one time about how I first met James back a number of years ago at my church. He was speaking on a Wednesday night, and as I was walking to the men's room, I run into him and Phil Johnson walking out of the choir room. I sort of froze and babbled a "hello" and Phil quickly said "Oh, this is Fred Butler, he is one of your fans" or something to that effect. James extends his hand to shake mine, and I just clasp his between both of mine and patting the top of his hand I say "I just love your books," or something like that. It was so dopey.

Any how, James has been asking for testimonies from folks as to how AOMIN has blessed their hearts. I sent in mine over the weekend with the hope it will get posted on the front page of his blog. But, if not, here it is:

James,

I didn't like you when I was first introduced to you and
Alpha and Omega Ministries.

I was a staunch and vocal KJV-Only apologist and I thought you were a pompous academic windbag who used clever argumentation to deny the truth about God's one and only Bible.

Of course, that personal evaluation came from a 23-year old punk who had deluded himself into believing G.A. Riplinger was a man and a reputable Bible scholar and competent researcher.

A friend gave me a booklet you wrote exposing her so-called "errors," and even though I first learned from you that "Gail" was really a woman, I was still convinced you were mistaken about the modern translations, so I was even more determined to refute your "attacks" against her tragedy of a book, "New Age Bible Versions". When the "King James Only Controversy" was released at our church's bookstore, I think I was the first person to purchase a copy. I probably read it twice, each time underscoring vast sections and writing my rudely mocking comments in the margins. Sometimes in all CAPS.

But God is a gracious God, smiling patiently from heaven as we slowly mature.

Though I was a strident KJV-onlyist, God was opening my heart to the glorious truth of the doctrines of Grace. I read everything I could get my hands upon concerning Calvinism. So, you can imagine my surprise when I discovered James White was also an unapologetic Calvinist. For many years I was thinking you were a moron regarding Bible versions, but you were swiftly becoming one of my favorite spokesman defending the biblical teachings on salvation. I responded to the "Potter's Freedom" much differently than I did the "King James Only Controversy" and I can say that book was probably one of the sources God used to open my eyes to the bankruptcy of KJV-Only apologetics.

Those men from whom I learned my KJV-onlyism were also the men who venomously attacked Calvinism, the doctrines which were so precious to me. Their argumentation against Calvinism I knew was ridiculous and sad. Then I began to think, "If they are mistaken with much of their arguments against Calvinism, perhaps they could be wrong about their arguments defending KJV-onlyism?"

Thus began my re-evaluation of my KJV-only convictions. This time, I picked up "The King James Only Controversy" and read it with different eyes. What you argued defending the transmission of God's infallible and inerrant Word, supplemented well a lot of the other good material I was reading which refuted KJV-onlyism. I am grateful to say now, some 15 years after I read that little booklet about New Age Bible Versions, Alpha and Omega Ministries was truly used of the Lord to free me from such crippling beliefs regarding our God's revelation.

Thanks Brother (And thanks for not laughing too hard when I showed you my marked up copy of the "King James Only Controversy").

Fred Butler,

(Phil's friend)

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7 Comments:

Blogger Fred Butler said...

You know what is disturbing is that you claim to be a Christian naming the name of Christ and defending his word and yet you are comfortable using sexually explicit language as if it is no big deal.

6:28 PM, October 13, 2008  
Blogger donsands said...

Nice tribute to a wonderful servant of the Lord.

My brother is a KJV-only disciple, and he is in deep.
But reading this gives me hope for him.
Thanks for sharing.

I don't get your first comment though.

4:48 AM, October 14, 2008  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

Sorry about that first comment. You weren't here to read a couple of sexually explicit curses left by a KJV onlyists by the name of "The Puritan." I am talking pornographically explicit.

I deleted them and left a note for him if he dared to leave another one.

Fred

5:35 AM, October 14, 2008  
Blogger Ken Abbott said...

Apparently he heard you, Fred. Your letter is at the top of his blog posts now. Congratulations!

I had the opportunity to meet James along with Eric Svendsen and David King at a conference on Roman Catholicism held on Long Island back in 2000. Because I was one of the very few out-of-town attendees the speakers very graciously included me and the others in their lunch plans. They told a lot of inside jokes I didn't much get at the time. But I was most appreciative of their consideration.

1:05 PM, October 14, 2008  
Blogger bugblaster said...

A fallen KJV-onlier. I knew it!

...extends his hand to shake mine, and I just clasp his between both of mine and patting the top of his hand I say "I just love your books," or something like that. It was so dopey.

Wasn't that my reaction when I met you?

7:59 AM, October 15, 2008  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

If I recall correctly, it was more like you gave me a quick "hey" while looking past me at Phil to whom you asked, "So. are we gonna eat?"

4:33 PM, October 15, 2008  
Blogger bugblaster said...

Yeah, well you were asking if I knew the Canadian blogger who militantly promoted breast feeding. I had to get away from you.

9:47 AM, October 16, 2008  

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