Sunday, November 25, 2007

Melanchthon's Letter to Calvin.... or Rather, Cranmer

Once again I received admirable mention over on on Romanist's blog:

"On a humorous side-note, the presumed pseudo-expert on Luther, anti-Catholic Reformed apologist James Swan, doesn't trust Catholic books to tell the truth about Anything Luther-Related....." infinitium, get the idea (By the way, I love the extended description, it's almost something I could rap, if it rhymed a bit better...hey, wait a minute, he's already changed it to ''the pseudo- Luther expert, and anti-Catholic James Swan". Hmm, it must've been because I said I liked it).

Will someone explain to me why this man keeps mentioning me almost every week, after he clearly stated,

"I'm through with this clown. He can write whatever he wants against me. I'll ignore it. We know, after many many examples, that it'll hardly be worth reading, anyway. If I reply rationally, he comes back with this hogwash. He doesn't deserve anyone's time.To the extent that I deal with anti-Catholics at all, I'll stick to at least influential ones like James White. He affects a lot of people, and so, needs to be countered and refuted. But Swan is a lightweight in the anti-Catholic apologetic world. Let him write posts like this, then. I have better things to do than to waste my time reading them, let alone responding."

As to the current admirable mention, it has to do with some issues raised last year. He had posted a letter correspondence between Melanchthon and Calvin some time back, and if I recall, has used this dialog on his website for some time. I first came in contact with it back when he posted it on the CARM boards (I believe I still have a copy of it somewhere).

I did some poking around, and couldn't locate anything to substantiate the dialog he claims Calvin and Melanchthon had, or more precisely, Melanchthon's response to Calvin. I have done a good amount of study on the letters between Calvin and Melanchthon, and the dialog he presented very much intrigued me. I figured he probably read it in some secondary source, and couldn't actually produce Melanchthon's response to Calvin. But yet, he posts things as if he's read them and researched them, because he, being an ex-Protestant, is in the "know." If I've proved anything to him after all these years, it should be to actually read the source your information comes from before claiming to be a professional apologist.

Now, his letter from Melanchthon to Calvin he's been mentioning for years has become a letter from Melanchthon to Cranmer. His earlier research work on this has been qualified as "speculation". I don't really care enough to check and see if he's changed his initial entries and writings to change them to say "speculation", or "Cranmer". It satisfies me enough to know that I proved my point, once again. And, like any exercise in futiltiy, we're back to the beginning: now we need to search out Melanchthon's letter to Cranmer to read a context that he hasn't read.

Update: He's has now changed his earler Calvin / Melanchthon research from "speculation" to "surmising".This is a bit worse, because "surmise" is simply "a guess". Well, I've been saying that all along....