Monday, September 29, 2008

Light of Nations (Part Two)

II. Aggiornamento + Ressourcement = Second Vatican Council

In my last posting, we discussed how the anonymous Turretinfan had misused the "plainest and best sense" of the Lumen Gentium 16 in support of his claim that the Catholic Church teaches it is God's plan that a Muslim could be saved from eternal punishment through a zealous adherence to his faith. I will now undertake to offer my proofs for my contention that Turretinfan has misrepresented what the Catholic Church teaches in this regard.

In 1959, Pope John XXIII announced his intentions to call another ecumenical council. On October 11, 1962, Pope John XXIII opened the Second Vatican Council with an opening address in St. Peter’s Basilica. Relevant to the issues being discussed here, the Holy Father said:

“The salient point of this Council is not, therefore, a discussion of one article or another of the fundamental doctrine of the Church which has been repeatedly taught by the Fathers and by ancient and modern theologians, and which is presumed to be well known and familiar to all.
“For this a Council was not necessary. But from the renewed, serene, and tranquil adherence to all the teachings of the Church in its entirety and preciseness, as it still shines forth in the Acts of the Council of Trent and the First Vatican Council, the Christian, Catholic, and apostolic spirit of the whole world expects a step forward toward a doctrinal penetration and a formation of consciousness in faithful and perfect conformity to the authentic doctrine, which, however, should be studied and expounded through the methods of research and through the literary forms of modern thought. The substance of the ancient doctrine of the deposit of the faith is one thing, and the way which it is presented is another. And it is the later that must be taken into great consideration with patience if necessary, everything being measured in the forms and proportions of a magisterium which is predominantly pastoral in character.”

How to Repress Errors

At the outset of the Second Vatican Council, it is evident, as always, that the truth of the Lord will remain forever. We see, in fact, as one age succeeds another, that the opinions of men follow one another and exclude each other. And often errors vanish as quickly as they arise, like fog before the sun."

[. . .]

“That being so, the Catholic Church, raising the torch of religious truth by means of this Ecumenical Council, desires to show herself to be the loving mother of all, benign, patient, full of mercy and goodness toward the brethren who are separated from her. To mankind, oppressed by so many difficulties, the Church says, as Peter said to the poor who begged alms from him: "I have neither gold nor silver, but what I have I give you; in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise and walk" (Acts 3:6). In other words, the Church does not offer to the men of today riches that pass, nor does she promise them merely earthly happiness. But she distributes to them the goods of divine grace which, raising men to the dignity of sons of God, are the most efficacious safeguards and aids toward a more human life. She opens the fountain of her life-giving doctrine which allows men, enlightened by the light of Christ, to understand well what they really are, what their lofty dignity and their purpose are, and, finally, through her children, she spreads everywhere the fullness of Christian charity, than which nothing is more effective in eradicating the seeds of discord, nothing more efficacious in promoting concord, just peace, and the brotherly unity of all.”

“The Church's solicitude to promote and defend truth derives from the fact that, according to the plan of God, who wills all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth (l Tim. 2:4), men without the assistance of the whole of revealed doctrine cannot reach a complete and firm unity of minds, with which are associated true peace and eternal salvation.”

Unfortunately, the entire Christian family has not yet fully attained this visible unity in truth.

The Catholic Church, therefore, considers it her duty to work actively so that there may be fulfilled the great mystery of that unity, which Jesus Christ invoked with fervent prayer from His heavenly Father on the eve of His sacrifice. She rejoices in peace, knowing well that she is intimately associated with that prayer, and then exults greatly at seeing that invocation extend its efficacy with salutary fruit, even among those who are outside her fold.

Indeed, if one considers well this same unity which Christ implored for His Church, it seems to shine, as it were, with a triple ray of beneficent supernal light: namely, the unity of Catholics among themselves, which must always be kept exemplary and most firm; the unity of prayers and ardent desires with which those Christians separated from this Apostolic See aspire to be united with us; and the unity in esteem and respect for the Catholic Church which animates those who follow non-Christian religions.

In this regard, it is a source of considerable sorrow to see that the greater part of the human race–although all men who are born were redeemed by the blood of Christ–does not yet participate in those sources of divine grace which exist in the Catholic Church. Hence the Church, whose light illumines all, whose strength of supernatural unity redounds to the advantage of all humanity, is rightly described in these beautiful words of St. Cyprian:

"The Church, surrounded by divine light, spreads her rays over the entire earth. This light, however, is one and unique and shines everywhere without causing any separation in the unity of the body. She extends her branches over the whole world. By her fruitfulness she sends ever farther afield he rivulets. Nevertheless, the head is always one, the origin one for she is the one mother, abundantly fruitful. We are born of her, are nourished by her milk, we live of her spirit' (De Catholicae Eccles. Unitate, 5).

Venerable brothers, such is the aim of the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council, which, while bringing together the Church's best energies and striving to have men welcome more favourably the good tidings of salvation, prepares, as it were and consolidates the path toward that unity of mankind which is required as a necessary foundation, in order that the earthly city may be brought to the resemblance of that heavenly city where truth reigns, charity is the law, and whose extent is eternity (Cf. St. Augustine, Epistle 138, 3). (Emphasis Mine)

Abbot, Walter. The Documents of the Vatican II: With Notes and Comments by Catholic, Protestant and Orthodox Authorities. New York: Guild Press (1966), pgs. 715-718.

On October 20, 1962, the fathers of the Second Vatican Council issued a Message to Humanity directed to all the people of the world. This document was significant because it was the first time that an Ecumenical Council addressed itself to all men, not just members of the Catholic Church. This document serves to set forth the purpose of the Second Vatican Council and defines what it means when it talks of a “plan of salvation”:
"In this assembly, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we wish to inquire how we ought to renew ourselves, so that we may be found increasingly faithful to the gospel of Christ. We shall take pains so to present to the men of this age God's truth in its integrity and purity that they may understand it and gladly assent to it.

Since we are shepherds, we desire that all those may have their longing satisfied who seek God "if perhaps they might find Him as they grope after Him; though indeed He is not far from each of us"
(Acts 17:27). Hence, obeying the will of Christ, who delivered Himself to death "that He might present to Himself the Church, not having spot or wrinkle...but that she might be holy and without blemish" (Eph. 5:27), we as pastors devote all our energies and thoughts to the renewal of ourselves and the flocks committed to us, so that there may radiate before all men the lovable features of Jesus Christ, who shines in our hearts "that God's splendor may be revealed" (2 Cor. 4:6).

God so Loved the World

We believe that the Father so loved the world that He gave His own Son to save it. Indeed, Through this same Son of His He freed us from bondage to sin, reconciling all things unto himself through Him, "making peace through the blood of his cross" (Col. 1:20), so that "we might be called sons of God, and truly be such." The Spirit too has been bestowed on us by the Father, that living the life of God, and the brethren, who are all of us one in Christ. It is far from true that because we cling to Christ we are diverted from earthly duties and toils. On the contrary, faith, hope, and the love of Christ impel us to serve our brothers, thereby, patterning ourselves after the example of the Divine Teacher, who "came not to be served but to serve" (Mt. 20:28). Hence, the Church too was not born to dominate but to serve. He laid down His life for us, and we too ought to lay down our lives for our brothers (1 Jn. 3:16).

Accordingly, while we hope that the light of faith will shine more clearly and more vigorously as a result of this Council's efforts, we look forward to a spiritual renewal from which will also flow a happy impulse on behalf of human values such as scientific discoveries, technological advances, and a wider diffusion of knowledge.

The Love of Christ Impels Us

Coming together in unity from every nation under the sun, we carry in our hearts the hardships, the bodily and mental distress, the sorrows, longings, and hopes of all the peoples entrusted to us. We urgently turn our thoughts to all the anxieties by which modern man is afflicted. Hence, let our concern swiftly focus first of all on those who are especially lowly, poor, and weak. Like Christ, we would have pity on the multitude weighed down with hunger, misery, and lack of knowledge. We want to fix a steady gaze on those who still lack the opportune help to achieve a way of life worthy of human beings.

As we undertake our work, therefore, we would emphasize whatever concerns the dignity of man, whatever contributes to a genuine community of peoples. "Christ's love impels us," (2 Cor. 5:14) for "he who sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in Him?" (1 Jn. 3:17)

[. . .]

The Power of the Holy Spirit

To be sure, we are lacking in human resources and earthly power. Yet we lodge our trust in the power of God's Spirit, who was promised to the Church by the Lord Jesus Christ. Hence we humbly and ardently call for all men to work along with us in building up a more just and brotherly city in this world. We call not only upon our brothers whom we serve as shepherds, but also upon all our brother Christians, and the rest of men of good will, whom God "wills that they be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth" (1 Tim. 2:4). For this is the divine plan, that through love God's kingdom may already shine out on earth in some fashion as a preview of God's eternal kingdom. The world is still far from the desired peace because of threats arising from the very progress of science, marvelous though it be, but not always responsive to the higher law of morality. Our prayer is that in the midst of this world there may radiate the light of our great hope in Jesus Christ, our only Savior." (Emphasis Mine)

Abbot, Walter. Ibid. at pgs 3-7.

These two preliminary documents make it plain what God’s divine plan is: God wishes for all men to be saved and to come to knowledge of the truth. (1 Tim 2:4). Both documents make it plain that Jesus Christ as the light to the world is the sole source of man’s salvation. Finally, both documents make it plain that the light of Christ radiates from the Catholic Church whose mission is to bring men to the truth of Christ as the sole source of salvation. As we will see in my next posting, these themes repeat themselves in Lumen Gentium, the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church.

Light of Nations (Part One)

It would be quite wrong to take the [Second Vatican] Council’s decrees as a complete exposition of the Faith”. ~Pope Paul VI

Prayer of the Council Fathers

“We are here before You, O Holy Spirit, conscious of our innumerable sins, but united in a special way in Your Holy Name. Come and abide with us. Deign to penetrate our hearts. Be the guide of our actions, indicate the path we should take, and show us what we must do so that, with Your help, our work may be in all things pleasing to You."
"May You be our only inspiration and the overseer of our intentions, for You alone possess a glorious name together with the Father and the Son."
"May You, who are infinite justice, never permit that we be disturbers of justice. Let not our ignorance induce us to evil, nor flattery sway us, nor moral and material interest corrupt us. But unite our hearts to You alone, and do it strongly, so that, with the gift of Your grace, we may be one in You and may nothing depart from the truth."
"Thus, united in Your name, may we in our every action follow the dictates of Your mercy and justice, so that today and always our judgments may not be alien to You and in eternity we may obtain the unending reward of our actions. Amen.”

[Composed by St. Isidore of Seville and recited at both the First Vatican Council and at the beginning of each session of the Second Vatican Council]

I. Introduction

Over on his blog, Turretinfan has offered a lengthy reply to the article I wrote here critiquing his claim that the Catholic Church teaches that Islam is salvific. At the time I wrote the article, Turretinfan originally advanced the premise that Vatican II had proclaimed that a Muslim who ZEALOUSLY followed Islam could be saved from eternal destruction. His example of a zealous follower of Islam that the Catholic Church would claim is saved had to do with a Muslim man who first cut out the tongue of his daughter and then killed her after “debating” her about the merits of Islam after he discovered that she had converted to Christianity. His original comments were:
“Question for my readers who follow Vatican 2's proclamation that "the plan of salvation includes" Muslims: Can you see from the example above that zealously following Islam leads to eternal destruction? If so, how do you justify to yourself your church's claim? Can you not admit that your church has erred on this point?”
In other words, Turretinfan would have one believe that the Catholic Church teaches that a parricide who kills his daughter can be saved through such a zealous example of his Islamic faith. My response to his original salacious charge has already been posted on this Blog. Since my friend, Jamie Donald, provided an excellent summary of what the Catholic Church states in the Catechism of the Catholic Church in regards to whether non-Christians can be saved outside of the Catholic Church, I originally was going to only supplement that response with several post-Vatican II magisterial documents that I felt would be helpful for BJ Buracker and the reader and more authoritative than “Hoffer on Lumen Gentium 16.” However, after I saw Turretinfan’s reply and the fact that he subtly altered the premise of his claim much in the same manner that Senator Obama has recently altered his campaign slogan from “Change You Can Believe In” to “Change We Need,” I felt that I had to give a more in-depth response. He wrote:
“The question is whether God graciously rewards those who follow Islam, not whether adherence to Islam is itself meritorious in the sense mentioned in the above block quotation. [My sur-rebuttal: God does not, but the question he asked originally suggested that the Catholic Church did so teach such] Catholicism claims not to believe in such salvation through meritorious adherence to religion. [My sur-rebuttal: Wrong. Adherence to the Catholic faith out of love for God and each other does save.] ”
He goes on to state:
“[...] I should point that many Roman Catholics do actually believe that following Islam will save you. "I believe that all roads lead to the same place," is the way I once heard a very elderly Roman Catholic put it. [My sur-rebuttal: Fallacious argumentation and irrelevant to boot as many Protestants, the Reformed variety included, believe the same thing.] That, however, is a moot point. Inclusivism, as popular as it may be amongst the laity, is not (as such) official church dogma, at least not yet. [My sur-rebuttal: Wrong. Pluralism is a heresy. Inclusivism is official Catholic dogma. If he had actually read Lumen Gentium as TF claims he did, he would have known that.]
Next, I should point out that saying that Muslims who practice Islam faithfully will be saved is different from saying that Islam itself is salvific. [My sur-rebuttal: this is true, but why didn’t you say that in the first place?] In fact, given the emphasis on grace, a consistent, conservative Roman Catholic would be hard-pressed to argue that even Catholicism itself is salvific (since salvation is by grace, not adherence to religion) [My sur-rebuttal: Objection! TF engages in fallacious reasoning of the Petitio Principii variety here. Without waiving the objection, I would state that God uses the Catholic Church as His primary vehicle to distribute both sanctifying and actual grace. Thus, in that sense adherence to religion is salvific. That being said, I would agree with Turretinfan to the extent that faith in another religion besides Catholicism is not salvific.]

Finally, I should note that Mr. Hoffer doesn't ever seem to dispute that Muslims who are Muslims (not Muslims who become Christians) are able to be saved as such. [My sur-rebuttal: Muslims who are invincibly ignorant of the Gospel of Jesus Christ or have never heard it preached might have a possibility of being saved, just like Protestants, Jews, Buddhists, pagans, animists, etc. . . It would appear that Christ has a means even for them to overcome their ignorance. Cf. 1 Pet. 4:6; 2 Pet. 2:4-10] Furthermore, that is the best and plainest sense both of Vatican 2's Lumen Gentium and JP2's Dominus Jesus (which, again, Mr. Hoffer does not seem to expressly dispute) [My sur-rebuttal: I may not have expressly disputed it because that was not the point I was contending against. I would respectfully voice my dissent to TF’s claim that his reading is the “best and plainest sense”of Lumen Gentium or Dominus Iesus. I will address this point at length here.]

In his attempt to escape the consequences of his erroneous claim that the Catholic Church teaches that a Muslim who zealously follows the tenets of his religion can be saved, his new argumentation demonstrated Turretinfan has more erroneous ideas about Catholicism. Turretinfan’s reply misinforms his audience on so many levels as to what Lumen Gentium states, let alone what the Catholic Church has taught for the last 2000 years on the subject as to whether non-Christians can be saved without belonging to the Church, I felt compelled to respond in the manner that follows.

You see, the problem is with his methodology. Given that Lumen Gentium is a conciliar and an authoritative magisterial document, one can derive the “best and plainest sense” of the few scraps of words that he is taken out of the document only by reading them in the context of the document itself and side-by-side with the other conciliar documents. Additionally, since the Catholic Church is interpreting Apostolic Tradition, the “best and plainest sense” of Lumen Gentium can be derived only from reading the document in the context of other authoritative expressions of the Catholic Church made throughout the Church’s history.

In his book, Lectures on the Present Position of Catholics in England Addressed to the Brothers of the Oratory in the Summer of 1851, pages 322-323, John Henry Cardinal Newman discusses the fundamental flaw of the Protestant way of studying Catholic doctrines:

Picked verses, bits torn from the context, half sentences, are the warrant of the Protestant Idea, of what is Apostolic truth, on the one hand, and, on the other, of what is Catholic falsehood. As they have their chips and fragments of St. Paul and St. John, so have they their chips and fragments of Suarez and Bellarmine; and out of the former they make to themselves their own Christian religion, and out of the latter our Anti-Christian superstition. They do not ask themselves sincerely, as a matter of fact and history, What did the Apostles teach then? nor do they ask sincerely, and as a matter of fact, What do Catholics teach now? They judge of the Apostles and they judge of us by scraps, and on these scraps they exercise their private judgment,—that is, their Prejudice[.]
Excerpted from Characteristics from the Writings of J.H. Newman. New York: D. & J. Sadlier & Co. (1876), arr. by William S. Lilly with the Author’s approval

Turretinfan’s undertaking to summarize what the Catholic Church teaches in regards to Muslims from a snippet of the Second Vatican Council’s Lumen Gentium 16 and Iesus Dominus is a modern-day example of what Cardinal Newman decried. While it is true that the Catholic Church teaches that God’s plan of salvation does include Muslims, he is wrong in suggesting that a part of God's plan as the Catholic Church teaches is that Muslims can be saved by a zealous adherence to Islam or that they can be saved at all if they reject the Gospel of Jesus Christ. To be blunt, the Catholic Church has never endorsed the heresy of Pluralism (which Turretinfan mistakenly calls Inclusivism). While one may choose to take snippets from the language of Lumen Gentium and then choose to give such snippets a facile interpretation that would suggest that the Catholic Church believes that other religions may be salvific, such a view is not sustainable when such excerpts are placed back into the context and read with all of the documents of Vatican II or the documents that have been promulgated later and studied next to what the Church has taught since the time of the apostles. It is important that Catholic documents be read in a Catholic manner in order to obtain a truer understanding of what the Catholic Church actually teaches.

We will start by reading some of the opening documents of the Second Vatican Council in the next posting.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Unintended Consequences . . .

Over at Turretinfan's blog, he references an alleged exchange between himself and an anonymous lay Catholic apologist:

"A common myth that we hear from time to time from a number of different directions, is that Bibles were in essence Gutenberg's invention: a testimony to Northern European printing ingenuity, but not an ancient practice. Of course it is true that printed Bibles necessarily followed the development of printing, but Bibles were being made long before then. Likewise, others will claim that even if Bibles existed before the Reformation, they were so extraordinarily scarce that ordinary people could not possibly have them.

Indeed, I recently had the pleasure of interacting with a lay apologist for Catholicism who, buying into the myth, apparently believed that people didn't have Bibles before the sixteenth century."

He goes on to write a somewhat lengthy article dispelling the "myth" that ordinary people did not have access to Bibles prior to Gutenberg's time once again vanquishing another ignorant Catholic. The text of the entire article can be found here.

I wrote a comment which he apparently decided not to let appear on his blog, although he does not seem to have a problem posting other comments of adulation concerning his article. I wrote, typos and all:

I hear this canard often from Protestant polemicists. Perhaps this a myth that Protestants have invented, but having been to Europe and having seen several ancient monasteries in France where the Scriptures were copied, as well as seen the inside of a numer of ancient sanctuaries, they all had a place where the Scriptures were available to be read. I do not know of any educated Catholic who would make the claim that the Scriptures were so scarce in ancient or medieval times that very few could read them. Like the notion that medieval man believed in a "flat earth," this is simply a retelling of a Protestant fable that Martin Luther rescued the Bible from the Church. It is unfortunate that an anonymous lay apologist for Catholicism bought into the Protestant myth that the Catholic Church suppressed the Bible and kept it from the masses. Shame on them.

The fact of the matter is that most people did not have the Scriptures in their home where they could be read at leisure. There was no ancient Gideon Society distributing Bibles at every inn or tavern or Berean bookstore where one could go and buy them. Almost every Catholic church or chapel, monastery, convent, and priest would have a copy of the Scriptures so that they could be read and studied.

Additionally, I would suggest that many early Christians memorized the Scriptures. Memorization was a skill far more developed in former times than now.

For those who weren't literate, the Church had icons, statues, paintings, stained glass, not to mention the liturgies, hymns, chants, sacramentals, etc... which served to tell the story of the Gospel.

It is unfortunate that you didn't give a time period for your article. I still remember a couple of verses in Old English from Matthew that I had to memorize from the Wessex Gospels (10th century AD)in High School.

However, I do very much appreciate your corroboration in dispelling the Protestant myth that the Catholic Church prevented ordinary people from having access to the Scriptures.

God bless!

In short, while it is true that the Catholic Church has on occasion banned heretical or erroneous translations of the Scriptures. It has never kept the Bible out of the hands, hearts and minds of the faithful.

I DO truly appreciate it when one of our separated brethren dispel myths about the Catholic Church, in this case, Myth No. 30: "Bible forbidden to laymen, placed on the Index of Forbidden Books by the Council of Valencia" which may be found on page 8 of Loraine Boettner's sourcebook for anti-Catholic rants and raves, Roman Catholicism. Anti-Catholics often raise the claim that Catholic Church kept the Bible out of the hands of the people up to the time of the Reformation. It was nice to see Turretinfan, despite trying to get in his obligatory digs against Catholicism, take the time to undermine a cherished myth of Protestantism. One must wonder if that was his intention.

On the other hand, I DO find it unfortunate that Turretinfan picks and chooses what may appear as comments on his blog. When one places restrictions on what one may see and hear in the marketplace of ideas, it has been my experience that people tend to end up doing their shopping elsewhere. Fortunately, I have my own blog and can post my replies here.

NEXT UP: "Light of Nations" ~I promise!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Rhetorically Speaking...Petting Turretinfan’s Peeves.

I just thought I would address Turretinfan’s latest comments over the my alleged misuse of the label “begging the question” in connection with my discussion of the Plurium Interrogationum fallacy:

Mr. Hoffer, in a new post (link) seems to miss the point of my correction of his irregular use of the term "begging the question" to describe plurium interrogationum. So that things are clear for him, I'm saying that his accusation/objection should have been to "complex question" or "loaded question" if he was objecting to a fallacy of plurium interrogationum (and I have assumed that it was his intent to object to plurium interrogationum, as petitio principii would be an even less appropriate, for the formal reasons Mr. Hoffer outlines in his post). The phrase "begging the question" derives from the petitio principii fallacy, not the plurium interrogationum fallacy. As well, the preferred spelling of petitio principii is ending with two "i"s (i.e. four total "i"s in the word).

I take it from his latest comments that he does not recognize my 23 years experience as a trial attorney nor the fact that I have an undergraduate degree in Political Science and a Juris Doctor degree as sufficient qualification for me to recognize and label his fallacious reasoning. Unfortunately for him, I do not recognize the ever-anonymous Turretinfan as an authority on fallacies either. He adduces no evidence or documentation to support his bald assertion of my so-called irregular usage of the label “begging the question” nor does he provide the reader with any documentation of his training, education or experience showing his qualifications to opine whether my usage of the label “begging the question” is correct or not.

Unlike my anonymous adversary, I am not asking you, the reader, to accept my argument on my say-so based on my college and graduate school-level education or 23 years of experience as a trial attorney. No, I offer the following documentation for your consideration:

Here is one definition of Plurium Interrogationum:

“An interrogative proposition allowing only one simple response, where two or more unrelated points are conjoined and treated as a single proposition, each one of the points requiring a different answer. Another form of this fallacy is to ask for an explanation of something which is untrue or not yet established. It is the interrogative form of Begging the Question fallacy. A complex question is an illegitimate use of the "and" operator.” (Emphasis mine) See, European Society for General Semantics definition of “Complex Question.” See also, this link.

The Fallacy Files , which categorizes and compiles hundreds of examples of fallacious arguments, is the brainchild of Dr. Gary N. Curtis, PhD, a professor of logic and philosophy, and one I highly recommend. Dr. Curtis defines Plurium Interrogationum as: “A question with a false, disputed, or question-begging presupposition.”

Now, let’s look at Turretinfan’s original comments once again:

“Question for my readers who follow Vatican 2's proclamation that "the plan of salvation includes" Muslims: Can you see from the example above that zealously following Islam leads to eternal destruction? If so, how do you justify to yourself your church's claim? Can you not admit that your church has erred on this point?”

Please note by his use of question marks and more tellingly, by starting out his comments with the word “Question,” that Turretinfan made his representations of what the Catholic Church teaches “premises” of three questions he asked his Catholic readers. If he had stated his premises in the form of a sentence as opposed to a question, he would have been correct to assert that Petitio Principii and not Plurium Interrogationum was the correct labeling of his fallacious reasoning. However, since he had stated his fallacious premises in the form of interrogatives, I would submit based on the authorities I cited above that Plurium Interrogationum and not Petitio Principii is the proper name for his fallacious reasoning. Furthermore, I would also contend that I am well within my rights to use the phrase “Begging the question” in refuting an argument based on either Plurium Interrogationum or Petitio Principii fallacies.

Turretinfan’s argument on this matter highlights one of my own pet peeves, which is people (particularly anonymous ones) claiming that I “miss the point” on something and then offer no evidence or documentation to support their claim other than their personal argumentation. When one cloaks himself and hides under the mantle of anonymity as Turretinfan does, one should not engage in ipse dixit. See, here.

The Defense rests.