The Haters Of God’s Law Get To The Nub

Zrimec writes,

The rather clear message is that serious punishments for serious crimes are somehow to be almost relished. I find this odd and disturbing.

Certainly there should exist a certain sadness that it has come to the point where a serious punishment has to be meted out against a serious criminal, however having admitted that there should be sadness that it has come to this, we should relish whenever justice, as God defines justice, is meted out. What, does Zrimec think that we should somehow lament that justice is being done or that God’s law is being honored?

Steve Zrimec needs to read Edwards where he preaches on and on about this subject in terms of God’s justice seen at the last day. Edward’s had no problems whatsoever relishing in God’s justice being seen.

What we have here are people who are more pious than God. If God rejoices and relishes in His law being upheld should we not rejoice and relish with him? Are we more pious than God?

Steve Zrimec,

When a judge hands down a capital sentence (something with which I have no problem per se) it seems to me the fitting and wise posture would be less relish and more sobriety. Any wise judge who has a sense of what is right, true and good will tell you it gives him or her no pleasure to have to conclude a heinous matter with an equally heinous sentence. It actually causes more pain and confusion. There is nothing “beautiful and glorious” about any of it. And wise victims know the same thing.

This is mere liberal hand wringing over the sadness of what is happening to the victim (criminal) while forgetting how the criminal has violated God’s glory by violating God’s just standard. Does Steve expect me to weep when a child rapist and murderer is sentenced with a just sentence? No, I will not weep, but I will relish that the criminal has been handed down a sentence that fits the crime. I am not taking delight that the person became a criminal or that the criminal is going to be vanquished, but I am taking delight and relishing in the fact that justice is being done. Indeed, there is only one thing that could make me relish the sentence even more and that is if the criminal repented and trusted Christ before the just sentence was visited upon him.

Steve and Darryl, are both caught up in feeling sorry for the criminal while forgetting both the human victim and the assault on God’s glory that the criminal attacked in the crime committed. Steve and Darryl would have us weep over justice, in a criminal setting, being upheld.

Now, the typical comeback to this is that … “Well, we are sinners to and we deserve death as well, and so we should be slow about being too delighted with justice.” This statement confuses matters. One can still be delighted with justice while praying that grace visits the criminal before the sentence is passed on them. Personally, I believe it is wicked not to delight in God’s justice being upheld in criminal settings.

Steve Zrimec wrote,

“To love the law of God is not the same as to relish its doling out.”

This is just plain stupid.

This is like saying … “I love the law of God but I hate seeing it applied.”

Steve Zrimec,

Moreover, and again, the OT laws being cited here have not to do with creating the Good Society. They have to do with what it means to work out our salvation by God in the person and work of Jesus. Those are two very different things. Those who want the Good Society convey a chilling relish, one that should demand a lot more outrage than has been seen here (and I’m not given to outrage). Those who understand this was all a typological pointing to God’s salvation of his people show, well, a more careful handling of the matter.

Zrimec assumes what he has not yet proved. The moral law and the case law was about creating the good society. The moral law and the case law was fulfilled in Christ but the Scripture never teach that the moral law and the general equity of the case law was abrogated. Steve assumes all this but this is the matter under contention.

But at least we are beginning to see the reasons for all the competing outrage. Steve apparently believes that he has muted his outrage. I know that I have muted mine. I believe Steve and Darryl are public square anti-nomian heretics who show their despising of God and His grace by their despising of God’s Holy Law. They likewise have a equally low estimate of me. It is obvious that we are serving different Gods.


“So if it’s a confession that God’s law were wise and glorious, no problem. Just be sure it is understood that such a confession is not as one who quests the Good Society, but rather as one who is a miserable sinner whose only help is in the name of the Lord our God, who made heaven and earth.”

Steve, seems to think he gets brownie points for admitting he is a miserable sinner. Nobody here disagrees with the fact that either Steve is or they themselves are miserable sinners. That is not the issue under discussion. The issue under discussion is … “Who’s Laws should we be ruled by?” Zrimec and Hart, being more pious than God, desire to be ruled by Natural law. Those who honor the plain meaning of Scripture desire to honor God’s law. Nobody gets brownie points for admitting they are sinners.

These people disgust me. They really do.

And I am glad that I disgust them.

Critiquing a Reconstructionist Critic — McAtee On Duncan

Several years ago Dr. J. Ligon Duncan published a paper titled ‘The Intellectual and Sociological Origins of the Christian Reconstructionist movement.’ Recently somebody sent me this paper with the purpose of challenging Reconstructionist thinking. While, I do not consider myself a gung ho Reconstructionist, I must admit that I have certain sympathies for some of their thinking. As such, I have taken it upon myself to provide a brief critique of Dr. Duncan’s critique of Christian Reconstructionism.

I think it is also important to consider Duncan’s earlier statements in light of the intention of a journal that he is attached with to devote an issue to Theonomy. If we properly note Dr. Duncan’s errors here we can be prepared to likely find those same errors in the upcoming Journal publication.

I should say immediately that I found very little to be critical of in terms of Dr. Duncan’s summarization of this Biblical movement. It is only when Dr. Duncan begins to critique the movement that I have some difficulties.

First Dr. Duncan mentions a number of terms that have an inherent negative connotation and although he does define what he means by those terms one is left with more of the negative connotations then the definition that he gives.

For example Dr. Duncan can write,

“Christian Reconstructionism is theoretically a positivist, fundamentalist, Calvinist response to the moral political forces unleashed by modernity…”

Now nobody wants to be known as positivist or fundamentalist and so by using those terms Dr. Duncan subtly prejudices the conversation even though he goes on to give some (questionable) definitions to those terms.

Now as I have read Dr. Duncan in other places I think he would define himself as both Calvinist and Fundamentalist given the way he defines those terms in this paper. His major problem seems to be with the putatively positivist approach to Reconstructionism. First, it should be said that Reconstructionists don’t consider themselves to have a positivist approach to the law insisting instead that their approach is merely a Biblical approach. We must observe that many Calvinists through the centuries have objected to the items that Dr. Duncan notes Reconstructionism objects to in what he calls their positivist view of the Law. Dr. Duncan fails to note that Calvinists have lodged complaint with social contract theory at least since the time of Dabney and opposition to Natural law theories has found opposition in recent decades due to the insistence that Natural law is influenced by Aristotelian / Thomistic categories that are inherently un-natural to Reformed ways of thinking.

The issue of prejudicing the debate by the choice of adjectival descriptors is seen again on page 3 where Dr. Duncan talks about the desire of the Reconstructionists to ‘formulate a right-wing alternative to more liberal evangelical social ethics.’ No Biblical Christian ever thinks that they are offering ‘a Right wing alternative’. Instead Reconstructionists believe themselves to be only Biblical. Being referred to as ‘Right Wing’ is problematic.

Also on page 3 Dr. Duncan says that

“Reconstructionism is attempting to make a systematic and exegetical connection between the Bible and the conservative ideology of limited government and free market economics.”

Now, we will only briefly note that the phrase ‘conservative ideology’ once again seems to me to be an attempt to prejudice the debate. Who wants to be a practitioner of ‘conservative ideology?’ More importantly what Dr. Duncan says in the quote above is only partially true. It would be more accurate to say that Reconstuctionism is resurrecting the pre-existing systematic and exegetical connections between the Bible and the Biblical ideology of limited government and free market economics. Those connections existed long before Reconstructionists came on the scene. Reading Charles McCoy’s ‘Fountainhead Of Federalism’ is one book that establishes that reality. Also, looking at Puritan theory regarding the Holy Commonwealth likewise shows systematic connections between limited government and free market economics that long predate the Reconstructionists. The point here is that Reconstructionists are not creating these connections between Biblical Christianity and Limited Government and Free market economics, but rather those connections existed long before Reconstructionists came on the scene (compare also Rutherford’s ‘Lex Rex’ when it comes to Limited Governments). Besides is Dr. Duncan really suggesting that the Bible is mute when it comes to Centralized and oppressive governments and planned economies?

Dr. Duncan notes Reconstructionism’s opposition to State financed education. Yet, people the caliber of R. L. Dabney, A. A. Hodge and J. Gresham Machen, to name only a few, likewise had grave reservations about State financed education, and Dabney, Hodge and Machen were no Reconstructionists (though they may have been proto-Reconstuctionists). I think because of the work of men like of Dabney, Hodge, Machen and the Reconstructionists there is a basic understanding that education is faith based driven. In short though Dr. Duncan identifies this aspect of the Reconstructionists he says nothing about how this is pretty standard fare for Reformed Christians.

On page 5 and again on page 7 Dr. Duncan seemingly subtly complains about Dr. Van Til’s emphasis on the anti-thesis as it manifests itself in operating autonomously or theonomously, and yet Jesus Himself said … “He who does not gather with me scatters,” and “He that is not with me is against me.” We find ourselves desiring to ask Dr. Duncan if he thinks that these verses only apply in the religious realm. (However that realm may be defined.)

Throughout the essay from page 7 on Dr. Duncan once again suggests that the Reconstructionists propensity to pay attention to the case law is unique to them. Yet Turretin who preceded the Reconstructionists by about 400 years likewise paid attention to the case laws. The only difference it seems between Turretin and Bahnsen is that Turretin was willing to allow other punishments for crimes to be implemented than those designated in the OT case laws to be levied against particular crimes while Bahnsen insisted that the penalties set forth in the Scriptures should be maintained. What they both agreed on though is that what the OT case laws said were crimes were indeed crimes. In short both Turretin and Bahnsen paid close attention to the case laws with the only difference being how ‘general equity’ was to be understood when it came to punishment.

On page 8 Dr. Duncan says that Dr. Bahnsen’s case for a twofold division of the law as opposed to a threefold division is not convincing, but the argument that he uses to reach that conclusion is itself not convincing. Dr. Duncan uses a kind of ‘you to’ argument to make his case. Dr. Duncan suggests that Bahnsen’s unraveling of the traditional three fold separation of the law (Moral, Civil, Ceremonial) is not legitimate because Dr. Bahnsen does the same type of thing in his methodology that Dr. Bahnsen points out in what he is attacking. The problem with Dr. Duncan’s argument here is that it is not a rebuttal of Dr. Bahnsen without at the same time being an admission that Dr. Bahnsen’s analysis is correct. It sounds like what Dr. Duncan is saying is, “Well, Dr. Bahnsen may be right in his fault finding analysis of the typical methodology but he does the same thing in his methodology.” If Dr. Bahnsen does the same thing it doesn’t prove that the traditional three fold methodology is right. At best it only proves that they are both wrong. At that point it seems that we are left to examining the underlying rational or principle of God’s Word as it pertains to the Law.

Next, Dr. Duncan argues for the end of what has been called the civil law by arguing that the changes transpiring in redemptive history negate the civil law. If this is so then it seems that we are left with the dichotomizing of the Sacred and secular realms. In Dr. Duncan’s arrangement we see that in the Old Covenant God was clearly over all areas of life as he ruled through the Nation-State-Church Israel. However with the coming of the New Covenant God apparently has not clearly spoken as exhaustively as He did in the old and worst covenant. According to Dr. Duncan God’s speaking is now restricted to the New covenant institution of the Church, where we find according to Dr. Duncan “a superior institutional expression of God’s will.” Clearly what seems to be implicit in all of this is that while God rules perspicuously in the Church, we are left to kind of ‘making it up as we go’ by the inventive means of Natural Law in the putatively ‘secular realm’ where because of the ‘change in redemptive economy’ God’s rule and eternal standard for the State is no longer as much of a concern. That this is true is seen in the eclipsing of the civil law with the change in redemptive economy.

On page 9 Dr. Duncan does a turn about in this Criticism of Dr. Bahnsen. Whereas earlier on page 8 Dr. Duncan complains that Dr. Bahnsen’s “own categories are based not on explicit Scriptural testimony but on what Bahnsen calls an ‘underlying rational or principle,'” yet just a few paragraphs later Dr. Duncan takes Dr. Bahnsen to task because ‘Bahnsen’s case is often dependent upon a sort of fundamentalist, proof-texting approach to exposition. One is left asking which criticism we should take seriously. Is Dr. Bahnsen to be faulted because he doesn’t used explicit Scriptural testimony or is Dr. Bahnsen to be faulted because he does use explicit Scriptural testimony?

In conclusion we must say that we are grateful to Dr. Duncan for this synopsis. Dr. Duncan’s summary on Theonomy is spot on at various points. Unfortunately when Dr. Duncan goes from summary to critique in this paper his points sometimes are not what we might hope they would be.

Some Interesting Insights On The State Of Theonomy By Someone Who Should Know

Bret asked Chris Ortiz — Editor Of Chalcedon Magazine,

Do you get the sense that people are giving up on theonomy or are, in their estimation, “moving beyond it?”

Chris Ortiz responds,

A little bit of both, I think.

Part of the problem remains the central dividing line between Rush and North’s emphasis upon authority: Rush says family; North says church. The institutional emphasis of the church led to an over politicization of theonomy and dominion. Now, theonomy is equated with politics. In addition, much of institutional Church (Protestantism) at the same time views theonomy as a cancer to the organized church. Tyler failed, and that still haunts Christian Reconstruction.

On the other side is the Federal Vision where we are witnessing a quasi-repeat of Jordan, Sutton, and Chilton’s high church emphases in the 80s. Only this time, a few are moving all the way to Rome.

At present, those with greatest interest in Theonomy are stemming from the freedom/constitutional movements and the recent revival of conspiracy theory. This is due largely to the fact that reconstructionists have been consistent in identifying the inherent evil of statism, fiat currencies, etc.

Dave Ehnis followed up with a great question,

Chris, where does Bahnsen fit into this Venn diagram?

David, that’s a good question, because, in my opinion, Bahnsen was always the X factor in Christian Reconstruction. Bahnsen did not subscribe to North and Sutton’s five-point covenant model, and he disdained James Jordan’s Interpretive Maximalism. However, he also was a dedicated local church man of the OPC persuasion being very committed to the Westminster Confession. This set him somewhat at odds with Rushdoony. The present leader most reminiscent of Bahnsen’s basic positions is probably Joe Morecraft. They both embody a remarkable consistency to Presbyterian tradition.

A Conversation On The Law


What do you mean by ‘God’s Law-Word’? I suspect you mean Moses’ Covenant, or at least that’s how you’ve used it in the past.


There is only one covenant of Grace, of which the Mosaic covenant is an extenuation and development of consistent with, yet not identical to, the covenant of Grace’s initial inauguration.

That the Mosaic Law was gracious, take for example, the preamble to the Mosaic covenant law,

“I am the Lord Thy God who brought thee out of the Land of Egypt, out of the House of bondage.”

Notice here that before the stipulations of the covenant are incarnated onto the tablets that God pronounces how His grace had been already extended to His people by covenantal deliverance. It was not the case, for the Israel of God, in the Mosaic covenant, that they had to keep the law and so earn saving grace but rather it was the case, as the preamble to the covenant Law shows, that God remembered His gracious covenant with Abraham (Ex. 2:24-25) and so led His people out of Sin (Egypt) with the expectation that they would obey out of grateful hearts (Ex. 19:4-5). It was only those who were not of the Israel of God who tried to use the Law as a means to put God into their obligation by an attempted obedience that refused to take into consideration God’s prior graciousness.

Your ongoing error, Judy, is to think that God ever offered, in His covenant of Grace, a period of time where His people could be saved by their own obedience. In the Mosaic covenant those Christians who were saved were saved by a grace alone that was consequentially marked by ever increasing, though never perfect, obedience.

Judy comments,

The Westminster Confession of Faith defines the Mosaic Covenant as the original covenant of works — see the relationship between WCF 19.I and II: “This law, after [Adam’s] fall, continued to be a perfect rule of righteousness; and, as such, was delivered by God upon Mount Sinai, in ten commandments, and written in two tables…”

Bret responds,

And that is entirely true and I don’t disagree with a word of it. The Law was (and is — even for the Christian) a perfect rule of righteousness. The Law was never given in the Mosaic covenant so that God’s covenant people could think they could keep it. The Law was given to show people their sin and a need to look outside of themselves for deliverance (hence the OT sacrifices which proleptically gave them Christ). However, for the Israel of God who was looking away from themselves to Christ, the Law was God’s gracious instruction (think third use of the Law here) in all righteousness.

So, those who were not of the Israel of God looked to the Law as an end in itself for Salvation in a covenant of works type of fashion and so were condemned by the Law whereas those who were the true Israel of God looked to the Law as an end for glorifying the God who had freely and graciously saved them and as a means for incarnating that free salvation into every area of their living.

This twofold working of the law in both condemnation and salvation is consistent with how that theme plays itself out through Scripture. The waters of the flood were both God’s condemnation upon the wicked and God’s salvation upon the righteous. The extreme picture of God’s wrath and blessing found in the prophets are presented together because the one and same action of God leads to different consequences for people depending upon the relationship they stand to God.

This is why the Apostle can say in the Holy Scriptures that the Law is Holy, Just, and good and that His Gospel establishes the Law.

Judy offers,

Then WCF 19.III says that to the timeless moral law God was pleased to give to the people of Israel, as a church under age, ceremonial laws, all of which are now abrogated under the New Testament.

Bret responds,

Yes, I fully agree that the ceremonial law is abrogated. What Reformed person doesn’t believe that? Still, we must keep in mind that the ceremonial law is only abrogated because all that it was employed to communicate was fulfilled in the Messiah, Jesus. So, its not as if the ceremonial law was capriciously cast aside, rather the ceremonial law is deleted because all that it anticipated and promised was fulfilled.

And I believe that the timeless moral law remains timeless and that the Moral law was given both in its pure documentary form (The Decalogue) and then God was pleased to give us another aspect of His Moral law, sometimes known as case law. This was based upon the Moral law in order that we might know what the propositional law looked liked when it was incarnated into specific situations. Another way of saying this is that the case law illustrates the application or qualification of the principal laid down in the general commandment. The general equity of the commandment remains timeless, and this is why the Psalmist could say, “In thy law I meditate both day and night,” and it is why Jesus could say that, ‘heaven and earth would pass away but his word would never pass away’, and it is why Jesus said he came ‘not to abrogate the law but to fulfill it.’

The proper analogy is our own Constitution. There is the Constitution proper and then there is the case law that exemplifies what the Constitution means in concrete situations.

Judy offers,

Then 19.III says that to Israel also, as a body politic, He gave sundry judicial laws, which expired together with the State of that people; not obliging any other now, further than the general equity thereof may require.

Bret responds,

And what I, and all Theonomists are arguing for is the general equity thereof. Allow me to give the classic example….

Because one of the sundry judicial laws that have expired is building a fence around ones rooftop, I no longer argue for rooftop fences. However, the general equity of that law remains and so I might argue for fences around swimming pools.

So, I am, and all theonomists are arguing for the general equity and are in perfect alignment with the WCF.

Judy offers,

The Larger Catechism limits the moral law to the Ten Commandments (LC, Q.98).

Bret responds,

Go back and re-read it Judy.

What it says is that the moral law is summarily comprehended in the Ten Commandments.

The answer does not say that the moral law is limited to the 10 commandments. It says that it is summarily comprehended in the 10 commandments. In other words, when one look to the Ten Commandments one finds the Moral law comprehended therein in summary form.

Besides, even should you should choose to use the word ‘limit’ it wouldn’t negate anything I am saying. All of the case law is not different law then the 10 commandments but rather only the Decalogue concretely applied to different situations. I hope that all that I contend for is nothing but that which is summarily comprehended in the Ten Commandments.

Judy offers,

So the WCF says that all the ceremonial laws were abrogated (I thought only the terrible dispensationalists used that term), and that the judicial laws of Israel oblige no one, except in the sense that they might illustrate how a general principle of equity worked in a given case. But this exception presumes that a general principle of equity has been derived from someplace else.

Bret responds,

The judicial laws oblige no one except where the principle that they are articulating (general equity) is applicable. When that is the case then the judicial law, because it is an instantiation of the Moral law remains binding because God’s never revoked His moral law. It seems Judy that you desire the Moral law in the abstract but don’t desire it when its thrust is instantiated in space and time. With all due respect, it seems you want a Moral law that gives you the ability to interpret it, as you will. All, I’m asking for is that God be allowed both the Moral Law itself and whatever interpretations with which He saw fit to incarnate it.

Now as to your comment regarding ‘the general principle of equity’ allow me to offer that God Himself often gave the general principle of equity in the case law as the case law provides concrete examples of how the principle of the Moral Law was to be applied to different settings.

Judy offers,

The Westminster Divines sure weren’t Theonomists.

Bret responds,

The Westminster Divines were proto-Theonomists Judy. They certainly were. You’re problem is that you are reading the WCF through your lenses. I have read Samuel Bolton (one of the Westminster Divines) on this very subject. Believe me Judy, you would be shocked by Bolton and would be accusing him of hyper Theonomy. I must take the interpretation of Bolton (A Westminster Divine) over your interesting interpretation of the Westminster.

Judy offers,

Bret, you said that the old-time dispensationalists were only Christians after a fashion? How can you be an ‘after-a-fashion Christian?’ You mean they only had the objective markers of covenant membership? You’re saying they weren’t real Christians.

Bret responds,

Only God and the individual concerned with this question regarding their own position relative to Christ knows who ‘real’ Christians are Judy. I am content with saying that Dispensationalists stood in some type of proper relation to Christ and His Church and as such should be spoken of with Charity as Christians. I hope that people will speak with such Charity of me some day.

Judy asks,

Bret are you saying that if we’re not a Theonomist like you, then we don’t believe in Scriptural morality at all?

Bret answers,

Now, come, come, Judy. How many times have you heard this type of line from unbelievers in your witnessing efforts?

For example,

“Judy, are you saying that if we don’t believe just like you then we are going to hell.”?

And your response no doubt is…

“No, I am not saying, ‘if you don’t believe just like me you are going to Hell, I am saying that if you don’t believe as Scripture requires you are going to Hell.’”

And so I say to you,

” No, I am not saying that if you’re not a Biblical Christian like me, then you don’t believe in Scriptural morality at all, I am saying that if you don’t believe as Scripture requires then you need to know the way more perfectly”[/quote]

As do we all,



Recently at Green Baggins there was a dust up surrounding a book recommendation that Lane made. The book is by J. Ligon Duncan and it is an attempt to deconstructing Theonomy and Reconstructionism. Now recently I critiqued a paper by Duncan that he wrote on this very subject. You can find that critique here,

I may decide to analyze some of the relativism that showed up in the thread at Green Baggins as many of the respondents there gnashed their teeth, threw dust into the air, and took a vow not to eat until all the theonomists were killed. (Would that they would keep their vows.)

The idiocy reached it’s high point when one gentleman said that

I don’t consider the theonomist challenges for us to objectively prove, without the Mosaic Law, that X is wrong and Y is the equitable punishment for X to be effective arguments. I may not know how to prove such things …

This is called apologetics by intuition. “I can’t prove how the theonomists are wrong on their desire to keep God’s law as the standard but I don’t need to prove it because I know they just must be wrong.”

Then this paragon of brilliance goes on to say,

Now the matter of *demonstrating* or proving the contents of innate knowledge like natural law in the manner of philosophers is notoriously difficult – and the theonomists want to make much hay out of this. It is certainly a lot nicer to have a black and white text to appeal to.

By all means, God wouldn’t want us to appeal to his inspired black and white text.

Second, when the natural law theorists finally do agree I am quite sure we will be going to their black and white texts to appeal to.

Third, it is notoriously difficult because it is impossible outside of a Christian Worldview. However if you have a Christian Worldview you don’t need to do it because then you will appeal to the black and white bible text which will correspond perfectly with the natural law you have “discovered” beginning with Christian presuppositions.

The above blockquoted statement is nothing but willful stupidity. Pagan philosophers will never prove the contents of innate knowledge because they are suppressing the truth of innate knowledge in unrighteousness. This is why Natural law will never ever work outside of a Christian environment. Natural law, like general revelation, most certainly exists, but those who keep appealing to Natural law as the standard by which the laws of nations or by which international law is made refuse to take into account the effect of the fall. Natural man as an axe to grind when he approaches Natural law. He will never conclude, starting from himself, how to govern himself in ways that are equitable and just.

All I know is that the Bible says that everyone knows natural law and is therefore culpable for it, whether or not I can do a good job of constructive arguments to prove those laws or not. The theonomist’s challenge cannot undo Romans 1.

What theonomist is trying to undo Romans 1?

What theonomist would deny that everyone knows natural law?

What the theonomist denies is that knowing natural law and admitting to knowing natural law are two different propositions. You see we read all of Romans 1 where we learn that the natural law that the natural man knows is being suppressed in unrighteousness. Since natural law is being suppressed by natural man Theonomist are not so stupid as to keep appealing to Natural law, as “discovered” and articulated by the natural man as the standard for being governed. Theonomy realizes that the natural man knows natural law but we also realize how natural the conclusion is that natural man will never admit to reading natural law right because he hates the author of natural law.

Two weeks of restoring my sanity on vacation, and somebody has to point out that thread on Green Baggins securing my restoration to edginess.