Volume 9, Issue 2: Disputatio
Equations in Norwegian Eschatology
Sugartoes Wilson and Bubba Jones
Is the end of the world just weeks away? Which length of a weekend does the Old Testament mandate? Why do punctuation marks marginalize antinomians? And how did middle Norwegian influence Biblical law? How heavy was John Owen? Please stop me.
In the following interchange, Sugartoes Wilson and Bubba Jones discuss the relationship between something and something else. Sugartoes Wilson (M.B.S. Old Jake's Bible College) is founder and editor of Nachoes for the World theological journal and Director of the Timesetters Society of Orange County. His biography, Call Me Sugar, is due out before the end of the world. Bubba Jones (B.S., Malibu Junior College) served as a missionary to Hawaii repeatedly, and he once renounced the faith to become a pastor in the Anglican church. He owns a tannish border collie.
SW: Careful students of Scripture have long recognized that the conclusion of the twentieth century will bring an end to the history of the world as we know it. The Bible tells us most emphatically that from God's perspective a thousand years is as a day (2 Pet. 3:8). The world was created six thousand years ago--which clearly gives us six days! This leaves us with a missing day in order to complete the full "week" of human history. That day, that last one thousand years, is clearly referred to in the last book of the Bible--Revelation (Rev. 20:4). When the first six thousand years have expired (just months away!), the new day will dawn.
BBJ: This is a vat of nonsense. I count three informal fallacies and a gross evasion of my previous criticism. The weakest part of your argument is, is . . . okay, okay, I give up. I know you're right. I'm sorry I ever thought otherwise. I have no idea what I'm talking about. Look, I've torn my own shirt in shame. Teach me, master. Ha! That's what you want to hear isn't it, editor-boy. The fact is that some Old Testament references to weekend point to two-day weekends (Dt. 34:14) and others to three-day weekends (Lev. 27:35). Given that the world is on the three-day weekend system (Hos. 4:20), why are Chinese restaurants closed on Mondays? This is a clear counterexample to your conclusion.
SW: I would like to point out that your sentence which begins, "That's what you want. . ." is cast in the form of an interrogative, but the customary form of punctuation which is used to indicate an interrogative is missing from the end of that sentence. I had supposed when first approached about this debate that it was to be a debate between scholars. So ha! yourself. You say that you count three informal fallacies. Given your prowess with punctuation, it frankly surprises me that you were able to count that high. Moreover, it grieves me to think that, although we could be debating the important subject of eschatology, you have chosen to drag us down into personal attacks.
BBJ: MIT Research shows people who challenge the legitimacy of personal attacks often don't have parents who were married. And as to the interrogative, your grammatical shoes are far too tight. Here I was celebrating my creativity and freedom from Western punctuation oppression, and you bit. Your latent legalism finally shows through. We're not under law; we're under grace. Speaking of oppression, why is it that you call this a "debate" and yet you get to both open and close the discussio?. That's hardly fair, and my people are personally wounded by such restrictions.
SW: If you and your people are personally wounded by such things, then you ought to learn to cope. We are under grace not law, remember? I have frequently noticed over the years that those in the grip of antinomian ravings are the first to yell and holler if someone violates the law with regard to them. You, sir, have done little or nothing to change my perception. Returning to the debate (remember the debate?), I insist that you respond with an intelligible argument. I proved in my first, unanswered paragraph that we are in the Last Months. It is probably futile to ask a punctuation-free-thinker what he thinks of that, but I still do.
BBJ: Actually, your first argument fails because it equivocates on "weekend," as shown above. But apart from this, your argument assumes that human history is only a week long, when in fact it's seven weeks long--a jubilee (Lev. 25:8). In middle Norwegian, jubilee meant "history-is-not-a-week-long" (cf. Thayersven, p. 678). Though middle Norwegians couldn't pronounce the "j" sound because of an overabundance of herring, recent work has shown that ubilee at least meant "history-is-not-a-fortnight." And on this whole subject, haven't you read John Owen's very, very, long treatise? It weighs about six pounds. Your sound-bite syllogism would just crumple under it. And you call yourself a Protestant?
SW: I read Owen's work a couple of times when I was in junior high, and, frankly, the man was a featherweight. Not unlike a few others around here I could mention. His later work did have some potential, but he had the misfortune to have written before the groundbreaking insights and systematics of Benny Hinn. I could develop this further, but I want to pass on to your laughable assertions concerning the legitimacy of drawing theological conclusions from the original Norwegian. Every passing student back at my Bible college knew how to read the Bible in the original King James English. Perhaps you can't follow the thousand-years-is-as-a-day argument because of your previously unmasked difficulties with math?
BBJ: You're still missing the point. Sure Owen himself might have been a featherweight, but his book weighed six pounds. Why can't you focus on the issues? No good argument can weigh less than six pounds. I've included a five megabyte HTML version of the book as an attachment to this email. I know I made a solemn commitment to finish this stupid debate, but they didn't tell me it would be with someone as unloving and narrow as you. Whatever happened to unity, healing, acceptance, and forgiveness you fat-headed jerk? Learn to love a little, you fascist bigot. I'm out of here. I'm hanging up this phone.
SW: But we're not talking on the phone. We're exchanging email. I do not know why you are having trouble with such simple concepts. Do you have trouble tying your shoes? Too many moving parts? But back to the crux! I am extremely grateful for your last paragraph which, if I might be so bold, weighs less than six pounds. In case the significance of this passes you by, you have said that no good argument weighs less than six pounds. Your argument weighs less than six pounds. Therefore, and I think our readers will see this coming, your argument is a stinky one. I think this about wraps it up. Q.E.D. But we still have space left.
BBJ: Would you believe me if I told you that I wrote it on a cantaloupe? I'm offended by your use of "stinky." I see you're insisting on having the last word. Does that make you feel manly?
SW: Yes. And I'm hungry too.
BBJ: You're probably an animal killer too.
SW: If we're not supposed to eat animals, then why were they made out of meat?
BBJ: I'm leaving. Let go of my hand.
SW: This is still email.
BBJ: Please let me have the last word.