Van Til Tool

Using the Van Til Perspective as the tool to discover what life means and how it ought to be lived.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Review of Fall 2005 SCP Newsletter and SCP Journal

A Review of the Fall 2005 SCP Newsletter and SCP Journal

By Forrest W. Schultz

The Newsletter is devoted to articles about reflections on New Orleans. The articles are good but no different than what can be found in other Christian magazines. At one point the author refers to “New Orleans, famous for its Voodoo, nature religions, and occult practices…”. What this newsletter should have done is devoted itself to a discussion of the New Orleans voodoo, occult, and Mardi Gras because that kind of subject is what a spiritual counterfeits magazine is supposed to specialize in.

The Journal, however, does stick to the purpose in the fine articles about the cultic nature of the Roman Catholic Opus Dei organization, the best I have ever read on the subject (pp. 24 – 49), the fundamental nature of Satan’s Great Lie (pp. 4 – 11) which underlies all the various cults and false philosophies, the Historical Analysis of the Impact of Secret Orders and Mystery Religions from the 19th century to the Modern Era (pp. 12 – 23), and the devastating effects upon Christianity of the failure of the Victorian Evangelicals to know how to refute anti-christian polemics (pp. 50 – 68).

However, there are some very serious lacks in these articles which need to be noted. On page 8 Tal Brooke makes the very provocative and immensely insightful statement that “Satan became the spiritual equivalent of a black hole”. But he immediately drops it without elaborating. Believe me there is a LOT to be said about that – many years ago I wrote an entire paper on it, and it really needs to be known because almost no one ever talks about it or even knows about it. Contrasting a star with a black hole has more analogies of the contrast between life in Christ and rebellion against Christ than almost anything else in nature that I know of.

I was glad to see Teilhard included (pp. 18-20) in the Historical Analysis article but one very important matter which was omitted from the discussion was the special form of panpsychism which is unique to Teilhard, namely the notion that there is spirit present in all matter, even in atoms, and that as matter and life and men evolve, the spirit in each of these evolves along with it to every higher more complex levels along with the evolution of the matter to greater complexity. This notion is presented in one of Teilhard’s earlier works The Phenomenon of Man, which I noticed was not referred to by the articles’s author. This notion is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT and should emphatically NOT be omitted from a discussion of Teilhard. Teilhard’s discussion of this sounds very reasonable and it is being taken seriously by well educated people including scientists and engineers. In fact the copy of Phenomenon which I read was leant to me by an engineer who told me that he felt that something like this was the answer. It was because Teilhard presented this notion in such a way as to make it sound scientific that this engineer was so impressed.

Another egregious lack in this article was the failure to discuss the tremendous importance of Fritjof Capra, who is merely mentioned in passing (p. 22). Capra, who authored one of the most important books of the 20th Century, The Tao of Physics, showed that the Copenhagen School of Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics was based upon a view of reality almost identical to that of various Eastern religions. The Copenhagen Interpretation has not only grievously harmed 20th century physics, it has also leant credence to these Eastern religious notions. Another important book like this one should be noted and that is Gary Zukav’s The Dancing Wu Li Masters. These books are extremely important in turning thinking people in general and especially scientists and engineers toward a sympathy with Eastern religions.

One minor point – there was either a typo or misspelling of the chemical name of LSD. The correct spelling is lysergic acid diethylamide. The article’s spelling omits the “e” after the “di” in diethylamide.

Concerning the topic of refuting anti-christian polemics, the article only notes a few writers who are helpful in doing this (Mark Noll and Os Guiness), which is amazing considering the great importance he shows the topic has. He fails to mention the best of the 20th century big guns who mowed down humanism: C. S. Lewis, Francis Schaeffer, Cornelius Van Til, and Rousas John Rushdoony. If you want to fight with the “big boys” you had better bring out your “big guns”!!