Tuesday, February 24, 2009

"Is Rome the True Church?" Final Comments.

 It has become clear that this work by Geisler and Betancourt is not a serious exegetical or historical examination of Roman Catholicism. At best it is a popular level diatribe which merely copies poor Protestant polemical (mis)understandings of both Catholic doctrine and suffers from severe selective misrepresentation of both the patristic evidence and Catholic decrees and theologians of the past. This work does not progress the discussion of Catholic shortcomings at all by not seriously engaging (any) secondary literature of decades on ecumenical dialogue by some of the best and brightest thinkers on both sides of the issues. 

 Is Rome the True Church? Stands as a classic example of how not to examine a theological system by not doing your homework, merely restating popular misconceptions, misrepresentation and selective citing. If such a paper such as this would be presented at any serious scientific peer reviewed journal or academy it would be laughed at or more likely not given the chance to be presented at all, an apologetical diatribe written by amateurs in the field they are supposed to be critiquing. 

 This post concludes my review of this book. 


George Weis said...

Well put.

I thought the only thing they were better at that than a Boettner for example is to be a little more Charitable... yet, as you said in a roundabout way "This book is flat out stupid".

I'm glad I haven't returned to it's pages. Now, to dispose of it :D HAHA!


R. E. Aguirre. said...

The best thing we have of a critique of Roman Catholicism right now is found in some of the technical ecumenical works that are out there but those are usually highly specialized and focused on one aspect, such as justification or a certain sacrament.

A large systemized (balanced) critique of Western Catholicism does not yet exist.

The Catholic Journeyman said...

"A large systemized (balanced) critique of Western Catholicism does not yet exist."

Guys from Boettner to Jack Chick would disagree, but I know what you mean.

And isnt that the modern effort of anti-Caths?...to say one RC Practice tumbles the whole Church that is. What a waste of resources IMO.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps they are just mirroring much of the popular Catholic material that is flooding the popular arena? Certainly there are some popular Catholic works that would be laughed at in the academic world, no?

R. E. Aguirre. said...

To CJ: That is exactly my point (as you note), works such as Boettner's / Chick would fall in this same category, namely popular poorly researched anti-Catholic polemics.

To Kepha: Your point exactly, Geisler's work is nothing more than a compendium of all the worst popular polemics to date. And yes I'm sure that some popular Catholic works would be laughed at in academia, but that is besides the point.