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A Modern Parable

Dr. Robert Morey  |  October  2, 2007

A wolf had lived among the sheep dressed in a sheepskin. Thus disguised, he had disarmed the naïve and this allowed him access to the tender lambs. One day he grew tired of pretending to be a sheep. He suddenly threw off his sheepskin, announced he was actually a wolf, left the flock, and joined a wolf pack.

Many shepherds felt that the wolf was only a confused sheep. He was too nice to be a wolf. So, they invited him to visit the flock and speak to the lambs. That a lamb or two went missing each time the wolf visited the flock seem to go unnoticed.

There was one brave shepherd who had previously noticed the tail and sharp teeth of the wolf peaking out underneath the sheepskin and had raised the alarm that this sheep was actually a wolf. The other shepherds condemned him for being unkind, unloving, and hyper-critical. But he now felt vindicated because the wolf had revealed himself and joined a wolf pack. 

He now warned the other shepherds not to have anything more to do with the wolf. He condemned the wolf for killing so many sheep and lambs and stated that he was happy that the wolf had the courage to say he was a wolf and that he was not in the flock anymore. 
What kind of shepherd are you? The apostasy of Frank Beckwith is a good test. This is how I see it.

When someone secretly adopts Roman Catholic or Eastern Orthodox theology, rituals of worship, or liturgy, and yet remains in the Evangelical world spreading the poison of these heresies to their students they are hypocrites. This is why I applaud the courage of Frank Beckwith for abandoning his blatant hypocrisy, letting us know that he rejected the Reformation and its gospel of free grace, and then publicly joining the Roman Catholic Church. 

In a recent blog, Beckwith admitted that he was actually Roman Catholic in his thinking for many years while taking evangelical money. Finally, the hypocrisy of pretending to be an evangelical but teaching Roman Catholic theology was too much for his limited conscience to bear.

In a recent Festschrift in honor of Norman Geisler, To Everyone An Answer (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2004], Beckwith states, 

“we do not share the conviction of some Christians that theological knowledge is impossible apart from special revelation.” (page 16) 

He then cited the Roman Catholic theologian Bubziszewski as his proof that Sola Scriptura is a false Reformation concept and that, in the place of Scripture, human reason is exalted as the Origin of truth, justice, morals, meaning, and beauty. Being the product of Jesuit education, Beckwith viewed Thomas Aquinas as the formative influence in his theology, philosophy, and apologetics. 

William Lane Craig in this same volume refers to himself, Francis Beckwith, the Howe brothers, Craig Hazen, Greg Koukl, Douglas Geivett, William Dembski, David Beck, Paul Coptan, Ben Worthington III, Winfried Corduan, Gary Haberman, Douglas Groothius, Michael Bauman, David Clark, Carl Mosser, Paul Owen, Norman Geisler, etc. as “theological rationalists.” (page 19). Notice that the noun is “rationalists.” 

Frank Beckwith is the first of these men to throw off the sheepskin, announce he is actually a wolf, leave the flock, and join the Pope’s wolf pack. I personally hope that Beckwith will start a modern “Oxford  Movement” like Cardinal Newman and that many of his fellow Natural Theologians will no longer play the hypocrite but leave the Evangelical flock and join the Roman wolf pack.

I saw the tails and teeth of Beckwith years ago and gave the alarm that he was more papist than evangelical. He was just one of many Jesuit-trained men were teaching in our colleges and seminaries. That some of them have now converted to Romanism did not surprise me in the least. The Reformers, Puritans, and great evangelical thinkers such as Schaeffer, Van Til, Henry, Clark, etc. all viewed Aquinas as a heretic and Natural theology as a Trojan horse in which the Pope is hiding.

1 John 2:19 states, “They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, so that it would be shown that they all are not of us.”

The passage above reveals that Beckwith was never a born again Christian to begin with. His subsequent rejection of Christ and the gospel of free grace is the irrefutable proof that he was an unbeliever from the beginning. I have serious doubts about the so-called conversion experience of all Thomistic natural theologians who worship before the idols of human reason and free will. I wish that all of them would have the courage of Francis Beckwith to leave our churches, colleges, universities, and seminaries. 

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