Dr. Mike Horton Bearing False Witness Against Thornwell & Dabney


12:20-14:40 “Machen was flawed” regarding his racial views. “Dabney and Thornwell, the two main Southern theologians, they argued throughout their systemic theologies, their anthropology incorporated racism. Africans are inherently less human. And there were a lot of pro-slavery people who didn’t articulate those theological views, but they did. Leading Southern Presbyterian theologians. Machen never argued that. And moreover Machen showed that even though he didn’t make theological arguments for it, that he thought socially it was wrong. My thing is Dabney and Thornwell have nothing to say to the broader church today… Once you weave those kinds of godless doctrines into theology, it bleeds into soteriology, ecclesiology, eschatology. I think we just have to say the theological systems of Dabney and Thornwell should be considered moribund in our tradition. Different from Machen. So why not Christianity and Liberalism too? Because Christianity and Liberalism, nor any of Machen’s writings, sought to make theological arguments. He was frankly sociologically racist. But he didn’t undergird it with theological heresy. That’s why I would say there’s a different between somebody like Dabney and Thornwell and somebody like Machen.”

Mike Horton
White Horse Inn

Now, I’ve read a good deal of Dabney. Far less of Thornwell, but still more than your average clergy critter. There may be places where Dabney and Thornwell say what Horton insists that they said but I for one would like to have those quotes cited instead of just having to believe Horton, who has shown himself in the past to be more than able to get matter wrong. So, I concede it is possible that Dabney and Thornwell said things that communicated that “African are inherently less human,” but if they did I want the proof of that. I want the quotes. So, Mike, lets see the quotes that prove your statement because absent those quotes you need to shut your pie-hole.

I want the proof of that because I have quotes from Dabney and Thornwell that prove they most certainly did not believe that. For example;

“The Negro is one blood with ourselves — that he has sinned as we have, and that he has has an equal interest with us in the great Redemption. Science, falsely so called, may attempt to exclude him from the brotherhood of humanity…. but the instinctive impulses of our nature combined with the plainest declaration of the Word of God, lead us to recognize in his form and lineaments — his moral, religious, and intellectual nature — the same humanity in which we glory as the image of God. We are not ashamed to call him our brother.”

Dr. James Henley Thornwell
Sermon — Rights and Duties of Masters

Does that sound like Thornwell is saying that the African is inherently less human than whites? I mean the man explicitly says that “the Negro is one blood with ourselves.”  The quote, taken as a whole, completely testifies that Horton is bearing false witness against a Father in the faith. Now, maybe Horton has some quotes wherein Thornwell contradicts himself here. If so, let Horton reproduce those quotes. Only be doing so can Horton be cleared of bearing false witness. Without said quotes demonstrating Horton’s allegation Horton needs to either publicly repent or failing that, be brought up on charges.

Now as to Dabney we read from his pen,

“… While we believe that “God made of one blood all nations of men to dwell under the whole heavens,” we know that the African has become, according to a well-known law of natural history, by the manifold influences of the ages, a different, fixed species of the race, separated from the white man by traits bodily, mental and moral, almost as rigid and permanent as those of genus. Hence the offspring of an amalgamation must be a hybrid race… incapable of the career of civilization and glory as an independent race. And this apparently is the destiny which our conquerors have in view. If indeed they can mix the blood of the heroes of Manassas with this vile stream from the fens of Africa, then they will never again have occasion to tremble before the righteous resistance of Virginia freemen; but will have a race supple and vile enough to fill that position of political subjection, which they desire to fix on the South?

R. L. Dabney
A Defense of Virginia & the South

Again, Horton may have quotes from Dabney from his systematic theology wherein Dabney contradicts himself. Note here that Dabney writes that;

1.) The African belongs to the nations that God made of one blood to dwell upon the earth. This contradicts Horton’s claim that Dabney believed that “African were inherently less human.”

2.) When Dabney speaks of the African as a “different fixed species of the race,” he is again affirming that Africans are human. Different does not mean “inherently less human.”

3.) Anybody who knows the history of tribal Africa blinks not a whit at the description of “vile stream from the fens of Africa.” One could easily imagine Cortez describing the “vile stream from the fens of the Aztecs,” or Moses describing the “vile stream from the fens of Canaan.”

4.) As much as the R2K Gnostic Mike Horton might find the Dabney quote he nowhere here says that Africans are inherently less human. Indeed, he admits they are human by noting the one blood concept. He merely recognizes there are vast differences between the African race and the white man.

So again, Dr. Horton, or anybody who would like to defend Horton, please do us a favor and provide the Thornwell and Dabney quotes that proves that they thought the African was inherently less human.

One more thing here before I sign off. This statement by Horton is breathtaking in its absolute idiocy;

“Because Christianity and Liberalism, nor any of Machen’s writings, sought to make theological arguments.”

I’m pretty confident that Machen would be surprised to learn that in none of his writings was he seeking to make theological arguments. This statement is nothing but dumbassery on Horton’s part.

In conclusion, I hope I live long enough to see the day when the theological system of Horton will be taken as completely moribund and when in Seminaries Horton is held up as a negative example of doing theology much the way that Charles Grandison Finney is mocked today as a theologian in Reformed seminaries.

McAtee Contra Selbrede & Chalcedon on Denial of Ethnicity & Natural Affections

Over here;


Dr. Martin Selbrede has a go at Dr. Stephen Wolfe.

I have always liked Dr. Selbreded though I have never met him. I have read his material. I have viewed some of his teaching online. He has always struck me as a kind and gentle man who is not interested in polemics. Further, generally speaking, the man is smart as a whip.

I cannot loudly enough sing the high praises of the first section of Dr. Selbrede work linked above where he dismantles Wolfe’s Natural Law paradigm. I wish such analysis was required reading for all those being tempted by Wolfe’s brash attempt to return the Church — and indeed all of us — to the nonsense that is Natural Law theory.

However, when Selbrede starts writing about race/ethnic issues Selbrede becomes every bit as awful as he was good previously on the Natural Law material. It really was quite disappointing to be cheering heartily reading Selbrede’s take down on Natural Law theory only to be booing every bit as intensely as Selbrede turns to racial/ethnic issues.

Below I examine the more egregiously mistaken elements of Dr. Selbrede’s writing on race/ethnicity.

Martin Selbrede writes:

That proposed deconstruction (of modern liberalism that Wolfe calls for) is a tall order. It must defang Psalm 87, which casts a multitude of nations as all born in Zion. It must explain what Japheth is doing in Shem’s tents in Gen. 9:27, account for the flowing together of nations in Isaiah 2 and the gathering of the peoples to Shiloh in Gen. 49:10. The parable of the Good Samaritan answers the question, Who is my neighbor?

Bret deconstructs Dr. Selbrede’s attempted deconstruction of Wolfe’s call to deconstruct modern liberalism;

1.) Psalm 87 is no barrier to race realism or the recognition that core ethnicities comprise cultures/social orders. Yes, Psalm 87 casts a multitude of nations as all born in Zion but that does not mean that each nation born in Zion is no longer its own nation. Here is one commentary on Psalm 87;

Verses 4-6. – The Almighty is introduced as making a revelation to the psalmist. He will cause the Gentiles to flock into his Church, even those who have been hitherto the most bitter enemies of Israel (ver. 4), and will place these strangers on a par with such as have belonged to his Church from their birth (vers. 4, 5, 6), admitting them to every blessing and every privilege. The Church, thus augmented, shall be taken under his own protection, and “established,” or placed on a sure footing, forever. Compare our Lord’s promise to St. Peter,” On this rock will I build my Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matthew 16:18). (Pulpit Commentary)

The fact that it will be said that Israel’s previous enemy nations will one  day be spoken of as “being born in Zion” only means that God will win those nations to Himself. It does not mean that they will cease being nations and will be swallowed up whole into a John Lennon song where we are to “Imagine there are no countries.”

Selbrede here seems to make the one and the many mistake, preferring to understand that ethnicity disappears once one is redeemed and placed in the Church. He makes the mistake, that is so common today, of not realizing that the Church is comprised not of a bunch of atomistic individuals but rather the Church is comprised of the nations in their nations. This is explicitly taught in Revelation 21 where we see the nations in their nations coming into the New Jerusalem.

Selbrede, presupposes classical liberalism in order to prove classical liberalism.

2.) First, we note that Japheth is in Shem’s tent (Gen. 9:7) as distinctly Japheth and not Shem.

Second, we note that Japheth is in Shem’s tent to have the blessings and to do the work that Shem forfeited when it was cut off for crucifying His Messiah.

Japheth, in Shem’s tent, does not prove, that the end consequence of Christ’s postmillennial triumph will be some kind of “Christian” multicultural Empire where all colors are bleeding into one.

3.) As to the flowing together of the Nations in Is. 2 and the gathering of the people to Shiloh in Gen. 49 the principle is the same as in #1 above. Yes the nations flow together to the mountain of the Lord but that does not necessitate that they do so as a polyglot reality. It merely means that the Lord Christ will win the nations in their nations to Himself. It does not mean that they lose their national identity. Because of passages like Isaiah 2 and Micah 4 and Gen. 49 I expect that people from every tribe, tongue, and nation, — each in their tribe tongues and nations — will be present at the marriage feast of the lamb. What I do not expect is that the nations will lose their national/ethnic identity all because they have been, by God’s grace alone, spiritually united to Christ.

Once upon a time, in New York city, one could visit various ethnic enclaves and yet remain in New York city. In the same way the new Heavens and the new Earth will not be populated by a coffee latte Christian people but will be a place where you can find the one and the many in technicolor and while remaining nationally/ethnically distinct there will be a harmony of interest because Christ is King over all and all have sworn oaths of fealty to their one great King, and because of that they will love one another with the love of Christ.

5.) Nobody denies that the good Samaritan teaches who is my neighbor. Further, it would only be relevant to this discussion if anybody was denying that Christians of varying ethnicities/races were not neighbors.

Dr. Martin Selbrede writes,

Ethnocentrists have pointed to Isaiah 19:18-25 as proof that nations remain discrete nations in the future. This is true, but it is only part of what the passage teaches. Yes, Egypt and Assyria are both intact, but verse 23 says “there shall be a highway out of Egypt to Assyria, and the Assyrian shall come into Egypt, and the Egyptian into Assyria, and the Egyptians shall serve with the Assyrians.” Both nations are fully converted at this point in the future, yet their border is remarkably porous.

Bret responds,

Why would we be surprised that each ethnicity/race as converted to Christ would have good international relations with their neighboring Christian nation? That fact does not change the reality that they remain the same distinct nation after conversion as they were before conversion.

Dr. Martin Wyngaarden makes my point for me here;

“Now the predicates of the covenant are applied in Isa. 19 to the Gentiles of the future, — “Egypt my people, and Assyria, the work of my hands, and Israel, mine inheritance,” Egypt, the people of “Jehovah of hosts,” (Isa. 19:25) is therefore also expected to live up to the covenant obligations, implied for Jehovah’s people. And Assyria comes under similar obligations and privileges. These nations are representative of the great Gentile world, to which the covenant privileges will, therefore, be extended.”

Martin J. Wyngaarden, The Future of the Kingdom in Prophecy and Fulfillment: A Study of the Scope of “Spiritualization” in Scripture (Eugene: Wipf & Stock, 2011), p. 94.

And again,

“More than a dozen excellent commentaries could be mentioned that all interpret Israel as thus inclusive of Jew and Gentile, in this verse, — the Gentile adherents thus being merged with the covenant people of Israel, though each nationality remains distinct.”

“For, though Israel is frequently called Jehovah’s People, the work of his hands, his inheritance, yet these three epithets severally are applied not only to Israel, but also to Assyria and to Egypt: “Blessed be Egypt, my people, and Assyria, the work of my hands, and Israel, mine inheritance.”

Thus the highest description of Jehovah’s covenant people is applied to Egypt, — “my people,” — showing that the Gentiles will share the covenant blessings, not less than Israel. Yet the several nationalities are here kept distinct, even when Gentiles share, in the covenant blessing, on a level of equality with Israel. Egypt, Assyria, and Israel are not nationally merged. And the same principles, that nationalities are not obliterated, by membership in the covenant, applies, of course, also in the New Testament dispensation.”

Martin Wyngaarden
The Future of the Kingdom in Prophecy and Fulfillment: A Study of the Scope of “Spiritualization” in Scripture — pp. 101-102.

Dr. Martin Selbrede quoting Wolfe writes,

Dr. Wolfe says, “Try to imagine how you would view the world if you had no comprehension of the concept ‘human,’ no universalizing concept of man.”51 This is a high price to pay to arrive at ethnocentrism: imagine making “human” an empty, meaningless concept, i.e., First, dehumanize man.

Was it truly both natural and good to prefer one’s own52 and neglect the Grecian widows in Acts 6:1? This is the likely reason Dr. Wolfe drives a wedge splitting reality: a wall of separation to keep the Word of God confined to the church.

Bret responds,

Selbrede is imputing here to Wolfe some things I doubt Wolfe would say he is doing. Wolfe asks us to do a thought experiment in what Selbrede is quoting. No one (including Wolfe) believes that in order to arrive at ethnicity one must first de-humanize man. Selbrede is way over-interpreting here. Man is man and part of being man is having an ethnic identity that makes one prioritize one’s people. Jesus demonstrated this  ethnic reality and prioritization when He wept over Jerusalem and not over Rome or Nineveh. Jesus demonstrated this  ethnic reality and prioritization when He asked the Syrophoenician woman if the children’s bread should be given to the dogs. Jesus demonstrated this  ethnic reality and prioritization when He sent His disciples first to Judea and only then to Samaria and the uttermost parts of the earth.

It is indeed natural and good to prefer one’s own.

As to the issue in Acts 6, we would ask Dr. Selbrede to note that the resolution to the problem there with Grecian widows was to appoint Grecian men to be Deacons. In such a way there were be no failure to provide for the Grecian widows. It looks to me to be a solution that favored natural affections.

However, I do end by agreeing with Selbrede that Wolfe’s Natural Law idea of creating “a wall of separation to keep the Word of God confined to the church,” is complete hooey. All of life is to be governed by God’s Word and the notion that we are to be ruled by a ill-defined subjective Natural Law in the common realm is completely contrary to Christianity. At that point Dr. Selbrede and I are in full agreement.

Calvin & Dr. Thomas Taylor — Proving that Grace Restores Nature

The West has for a couple centuries has ever increasingly gone from egalitarian excess to egalitarian excess. What started in the French Revolution as an elimination of all class distinctions in the name of equality has burgeoned fatter and fatter with each subsequent incarnation of logical consistency. From the Sans-culottes work of pulling down the French Aristocrats in the name of equality, to the elimination of slavery by violence in America in the name of equality, to the elimination of titles as replace by “comrade” in the Bolshevik Revolution in the name of equality, to the muscular Feminism embodied by Mary Wollstonecraft, Mary Shelley, Alexandra Kollontai, Elizabeth Cady Stanton,  Susan B. Anthony and countless others to the accepting of sodomy, trannie-ism, and now in the chute, pedophilia, equality has been the cancer that ate the West.

The Christian church has not been inure from the infection that is egalitarianism. For example where Churches have not embraced women officers by way of official policy and pastors they have embraced women officers and Pastors for all practical purposes. Yes, exceptions exist. Now, egalitarianism is pushing for accepting sexual pervert members and officers. Eventually, the sexual perverts will win out because egalitarianism is a conclusion that will only continue until its fullest implications are embraced by all.

But this is not the way the Christian church has always thought. There was a time that the church spoke loudly and clearly that being a Christian did not mean God created distinctions (inequalities) ceased to exist.

Consider, for example this treatment of Titus 2:9 by Puritan, Dr. Thomas Taylor,

 “Exhort bondservants (slaves) to be obedient to their own masters, to be well pleasing in all things, not answering back, 10 not [a]pilfering, but showing all good [b]fidelity, that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in all things.”

“Hence we note that religion and the doctrine of gospel frees no man from any duty, but rather fastens it upon him. In Christ, all are indeed one, but in regard to (1) the spiritual and inward man, and (2) The means of leading men to happiness. But in respect to the outward man, they abide master and servant, prince and people, bond and free.”

Dr. Thomas Taylor
Puritan Preacher/Theologian
Gary Lee Roper
Antebellum Slavery; An Orthodox Christian View — p. 253

Taylor here, was only agreeing with John Calvin who had preceded him in the previous century.

“Regarding our eternal salvation, it is true that one must not distinguish between man and woman, or between king and a shepherd, or between a German and a Frenchman. Regarding policy, however, we have what St. Paul declares here; for our, Lord Jesus Christ did not come to mix up nature, or to abolish what belongs to the preservation of decency and peace among us….Regarding the kingdom of God (which is spiritual) there is no distinction or difference between man and woman, servant and master, poor and rich, great and small. Nevertheless, there does have to be some order among us, and Jesus Christ did not mean to eliminate it, as some flighty and scatterbrained dreamers [believe].”

Sermon on 1 Corinthians 11:2-3

These men understood that regeneration/conversion does not relieve slaves from being slaves, nor does it relieve men from submitting to their employers, nor does it release wives from submitting to their husbands. They understood that grace restores nature. It does not destroy nature.

Much of the modern church now longer embraces this principle. For much of the modern church being born again means you lose your race/ethnicity, or like Doug Wilson, “race doesn’t really exist,” or like Voddie Baucham, “race is only about melanin levels.”

Elsewhere more and more the modern church agrees that a man can be a woman and a woman can be a man. All of this clown world stuff emanates from the fact that the egalitarianism which begin to wax with the French Revolution continues to wax and wax and wax.

The historic Reformed position, as seen by the quotes above, has never given in to the absolutely insane idea that race is a social construct — a theory that is the laxative that gives way to the diarrhea  that insists that gender and sexuality is a social construct.

Because of egalitarianism the world has gone stark raving bonkers. The Reformed knew where this egalitarianism would end up.

Pope Doug’s Gaslighting I

“Incidentally, in trying to get those phrases (Christian Nationalism and Kinism) to be interchangeable, they (the WOKE crowd) have the same objective as the kinists do. Working arm in arm, they are.”

Pope Doug

1.) Once again, there can be no true nationalism of any stripe apart from Kinism. The only options Wilson has in denying Kinism to Christian Nationalism is either a civic Nationalism or a propositional Nationalism. There are no other choices and the skinny of the matter is that neither propositional nationalism or civic nationalism can be properly called nationalism if we are going to take the idea of “nation” etymologically.

2.) Now Wilson may be on to something when he suggests that the WOKE and the Kinists are both insisting a equivalency between Kinism and Christian Nationalism. HOWEVER, to suggest those two opposing poles are working arm and arm is utter gaslighting because the WOKE crowd wants to equate the two terms in order to discredit Christian Nationalism since they, with Wilson’s help, have equated Kinism with racism. On the other hand the Kinists insist that Kinism and Christian Nationalism are equivalents because of the etymology of the word nation. There is no nationalism apart from kin. So, Kinists are seeking to bring out the true meaning of Christian Nationalism while the WOKE crowd is seeking to discredit Christian Nationalism by suggesting that Kinism = Christian Nationalism and so, with Wilson’s contrivance, is all really about racism.

Voetius and His “Racial Malice”

The following was posted by one Rev. Michael Spangler on X. I am re-posting in here. I am pretty sure Pope Doug Wilson of the CREC would insist that the Reformed Father Voetius was guilty of racial malice for the counsel given below.

As an FYI… I do not believe that Romans 11 teaches a “future to us” conversion of the Jews. I believe that Jesus cursing of the Fig tree and Jesus parable of the fruitless tree preclude us from looking for a future national conversion of the Jews. Though I do allow that individual Jews will be converted but only as belonging to other peoples.

I use the phrase “Racial Malice” in the title to tweak Doug Wilson who has suggested that such thinking as exhibited in the list below is beyond the pale and is a case of “Racial Malice.”

Anyway… on with Voetius.

Voetius believed in the future conversion of the Jews, and wanted Christians, and Christian governments, to pray and labor for it.

Therefore he wisely warned against eight “political means, which serve more for the perverting, rather than the converting of the Jews.”

They are:

1. Granting them civil privileges and immunities.

2. Allowing them to associate too freely with Christians in society.

3. Granting them any degrees or authority, in government, in business, in medicine, in academics.

4. Allowing their divinations, or kaballistic-magical superstitions.

5. Allowing them unjust divorce and polygamy.

6. Allowing their practice of usury.

7. Allowing the public exercise of the Jewish religion, including the publishing of works teaching their Talmudic blasphemies.

8. Harshness and injustice toward them.

De Judaismo, in Selectae disputationes, vol. 2, pp. 109–110.