Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Another False Conversion Turned Over To A False Church: J. Budziszewski

I came across this today, and its a sobering reminder that we must be very careful who we read and listen to---who influences us. J. Budziszewski used to be a Christian apologist, author and professor on a college campus. Then he rejected the Gospel and became a Roman Catholic. See what he says in his own words about that development....who influenced his thinking. Such false conversions of thinking walking an aisle saves a soul is DEADLY and does no one any good. Budziszewski is the poster child of a false conversion.


During the 1990s, J. Budziszewski rose to prominence as one of the leading intellectual lights among Evangelical Christians in America. A political theorist with a special interest in the natural-law tradition, he was highly sought as a speaker at conferences organized by groups such as the InterVarsity Fellowship and Campus Crusade for Christ. A principal theme of his many talks to American campus groups is captured in the title of his 1999 book, How to Stay Christian in College.

For some Evangelical Protestants, then, it came as a jolt when, on Easter Sunday 2004, Budziszewski was received into the Catholic Church. After maintaining a public silence about his conversion for several months, Budziszewski agreed to tell the story to CWR.....

My birth family was Baptist; in fact my maternal grandfather was one of the first Polish Baptist ministers in the United States. He pastored a Polish-speaking congregation.

I was a convinced Protestant. At the age of 10, I "walked the aisle," presented myself for Baptism, and vowed to follow Christ. Probably the best description of my spiritual condition during adolescence is "pious, but not holy."

Although the seeds took another 20 years to sprout, Catholic friends and thinkers had influenced me even during my wilderness years of atheism.

But I was going to tell you the Catholic influences that worked on me during my wilderness years. I read St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, and especially Dante Alighieri. When I read Dante’s imaginative description of the center of Hell–the Lake of Cocytus, where the damned are imprisoned in ice, unable to move a muscle to the right or to the left–I thought that he was describing me. I couldn’t move either. I’d thrown out all possible motives for movement.

Naturally I taught my students Thomas Aquinas, but I found it difficult to do so. The problem was that his arguments presented such a strong appearance of truth. For the very beauty of this appearance, I had to exercise strong discipline not to weep. One of my students in those days asked permission to put a personal question. "I’ve been listening carefully," he said, "and I figure that you’re either an atheist or a Roman Catholic. Which one is it?"

You can see why, when I finally returned to Christian faith, I wanted that one foot in Catholic tradition.

Yet return also meant recovery of lost elements of Protestant belief, and I couldn’t see my way to Catholicism proper.

I had the common Protestant idea that Catholicism teaches "works-righteousness"–that we earn our way into heaven, apart from the merits of Christ–that if we just earn enough "virtue points," we’re in. It took a long time to get over such misunderstandings.

But the ongoing collapse of the Episcopal enterprise forced us to ask deeper questions about the nature of the Church. Our ecclesiology was very nearly Catholic, long before we actually joined the Catholic Church. This fact made our picture of ourselves as part of a "faithful remnant" inside the Anglican communion harder and harder to believe in. After all, if what the Catholic Church teaches about her nature and authority is true, then how can you justify not becoming part of her?

Although we continued to disagree with a number of Catholic dogmas, we suffered a growing suspicion that where we disagreed, it was we who were wrong, not the Church.

Not all converts come into the fold in the same way. For some people on the way into the Catholic Church, the ecclesiastical objection is the last one to be overcome. First they become convinced about doctrine A, doctrine B, and doctrine C, and then at last they becoming convinced that the Church has authority to teach about these matters. For me it was the other way around. First I became convinced that the Church has authority to teach. That didn’t mean that my various difficulties about doctrine A, doctrine B, and doctrine C disappeared, but it converted my "objections" into "obstacles."

After several years of wrestling, becoming convinced on one point after another, I finally found myself able to say with respect to the remaining issues, "I am ready to obey." That turned out to be crucial. As Augustine said, we believe in order to know. There are some things you have to understand before you can accept them–but there are others you have to accept before you can understand them.

End quote. Source.

Too bad he didn't hear the likes of Tony Miano:

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