Fightin’ Words

My recent post about Lifeway generated a lot of traffic (for me anyway), but I was surprised that there were no comments (at the time). I then posted this to my twitter:

Even more views on my Lifeway post today (, still no comments. What makes you decided to comment or not on a blog post?

One of the responses I got was interesting. I’m not sure if it was directed at me necessarily, but the point is a valid one:

@TheKryptonian: @thomasjwhitley I usually comment if there’s intelligent, mature discussion to be had. But not if the blogger’s clearly just trying to fight

Now, this person could certainly have had a problem with my post and inferred that I was someone who was clearly just trying to fight. If I came across that way, I apologize, because that is not my intent at all. My desire is that people think for themselves. I also desire that corporations, those in charge, etc. encourage people to think critically. I have difficulty accepting any person or group of people that does not encourage that.

I recognize that my life experiences color my views on this and other topics. My parents taught me to think openly and critically about all points of view proposed. Thus, I have become someone who holds every option as viable until I have thoroughly thought through what I understand to be the positives, negatives and implications.

What about you? Were you taught growing up that it is always good to question and seek further or were you taught to just accept what you were told?


8 thoughts on “Fightin’ Words

    1. My apology is not for the post of for the contents of the post. It is only applicable if I did a poor job of portraying my thoughts in a critical manner. I.E. I don’t want to just come across as a jerk who is as close-minded as those whom I rail against for being close-minded.

  1. My parents taught me the think critically. As a result, I am often in the minority in terms of opinions because I don’t automatically take what the pastor says as gospel. I went to a Christian school that was of a denomination that I did not belong to, and was told that I was going to hell at least once because of my differing beliefs. I’ve even had people question whether or not I was actually a Christian. These things can be painful at the time because I know that they just don’t understand what I believe, but I would rather endure hardships and possibly find truth than to have an easy life possibly being led by the blind. It’s not that I don’t listen to other people. I just don’t assume that they are right if they say something that seems off.

  2. I didn’t comment on your last blog, because I think Perry’s comment on facebook was quite sufficient.

    As for what my parents taught me concerning the issue at hand, I can’t say that I quite remember. I don’t think anything was explicit. But I remember questioning some things and not others. I was always curious and always eager to know what someone else knew.

    I’m not pleased with my response here, because I often favor nurture over nature (although I don’t like to admit to favoring one). A lot of methodology is indoctrinated, but I guess even a lot of that “education” is what you make of it.

    (Congrats on comps, by the way!)

    1. Trevar, your mention of nature vs. nurture in this situation is an interesting one. Do you think that one typically reigns supreme in one’s life when determining how questioning they are or is it different for each person?

  3. Guess who it is? @TheKryptonian. I am going to be honest with you (ironically, I might be taking a risk here in saying it) – I’m also @LifeWayMedia. I’m going out on that limb so that you’ll know I’m speaking as a LifeWay employee who wants to assure you that those statements in the lesson were probably not written with the intent you inferred. I cannot say that for certain, as I’m not the one who wrote or edited those words, but I passed on your blog to the folks who did. Hopefully you’ve gotten a reply. If not, let me know and I’ll pursue it further – I’d like to hear the explanation as well.
    From where I stand, the LifeWay I know would not take such an authoritative position. Understand that we are not the SBC, and the SBC is not the Baptist Vatican (and I’m pretty sure they’re not trying to be). We’re just a publishing house under its wing.

    I think it’s admirable that you are encouraging others to be Bereans. I totally track with you on that, because I’m the same way. I grew up in church, and didn’t realize until recently that I’ve been very indoctrinated by faulty theology, legalism, and tradition. It is disappointing that many people from the very denominations which sprang from the Reformation have slipped into that, but I’m pretty sure our editors at LifeWay do support and encourage personal discernment.

    BTW: Small world. I think I know your wife, if her name is Trinity! She’s one of my favorite camp staffers that I ever had the pleasure of working with.

    1. Thanks for stopping by and passing along my thoughts. I, like you, have been involved with Lifeway for much of my life (I used to work in one of their retail stores) and while I think you probably are right they those words were not written with the intent to be completely authoritative, they certainly came across that way and just as I am responsible for the words that I write (on this blog, for instance) they are responsible for they words they right. If nothing else, those statements certainly did not encourage free and open thinking. Whether that was their intent or not, I cannot say.

      Also, I agree that the SBC as a whole is not attempting to be the Baptist Vatican, but that does not mean that there are not some who do want to be just that. I am with you that it is disheartening that we have gotten where we are today with the rich history we have in our past of not accepting the status quo and pushing for the right of everyone to read and interpret scripture on their own.

      You do know my wife. I showed her your comments on twitter and she said , “That might be my friend, Bucky.” Once again, thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts on the situation.

  4. Forgot this part: I accept your apology, no personal offense taken. Just something to keep in mind for future blogging, though: it was the title, tone, harsh charges, and name-calling that gave off that vibe. Remember 1 Cor. 16:14.

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