Monday, August 21, 2006

Dave Hunt: The Man, The Myth, The Dishonesty

In the reformed communities, Dave Hunt's name has become synonymous with such terms and phrases as, misrepresentation, ad hominem, charicature, poor research, and dishonesty. This concensus stems largely from Dave Hunt's polemical work entitled, "What Love Is This?". This work hit the bookshelves in 2002 and almost immediately, James White of Alpha and Omega Ministries began the tedious task of documenting the errors that permeated the pages of "What Love Is This?" (hereafter referred to as WLIT). It wasn't long before Dave Hunt's own ministry began to lose revenue due to WLIT and eventually was forced into publishing the work himself thru his own ministry due to his publisher refusing to put out the second edition. Amazingly, Hunt has recently released a third edition of WLIT despite the fact that he is still being forced to self-publish the book.

Now, as mentioned above, James White has documented many gross errors contained within WLIT (both first and second editions) and others that have sprang from Dave Hunt's ministry and writing. Some examples of White's documentation are:

  • Hunt's statement that Charles Spurgeon "unequivocally" denied limited atonement (see here)
  • Hunt's endorsement of the New World Translation's rendering of Acts 13:48 (see here)
  • Hunt's exegetical error on 1John 5:1 and the subsequent retraction of his statements in regards to the same in the second edition of WLIT (see here)
  • Hunt blaming the refusal of his publisher to print the second edition of WLIT on some great "Calvinistic conspiracy" (see here)
  • The now infamous "Hebrew original" of Acts 1-15 (see here)

After reading thru these examples coupled with listening to White's audio files, one wonders how anyone in their right mind could endorse Dave Hunt's work. Indeed, I was surprised to find an individual recently who not only bought WLIT, but was aggressively defending both Hunt and his book. And what's sad is that no matter how many times Hunt's errors are demonstrated, this individual believes Hunt to be right and everyone else to be wrong including Laurence Vance whose criticism on parts of WLIT was written off by this individual as being biased.

Also, this person at one point linked to a Q & A section of Hunt's site in which I found this interesting tidbit:

Sadly, with few exceptions, most of the Calvinists who write to me make similar unsupported charges. For example, see James White's response to my book, What Love Is This? -Dave Hunt

This statement was made in response to a letter Hunt receieved that was critical of his work in regards to Calvinism. The charges made against Hunt are similiar, if not identical to many of White's own criticisms of Hunt. Yet, Hunt says that not only are the charges unsupported, but White's charges are equally unsupported. Undoubtedly, Hunt is referring to White's open letter that was written and posted to White's site soon after WLIT was released. And as anyone can see, White's open letter (which is also linked above) is lengthy and full of documentation of White's charges. In light of this, I dare say that Hunt's statement above is a bold-faced lie. There simply is no other way of looking at it. For Hunt to dismiss White's open letter as "unsupported charges", is outright dishonesty on Hunt's part. It is precisely this, coupled with the documentation on James White's site, that justifies and strengthens the reformed community's opinion of Hunt and his work. And it is this sort of thing that is ignored and/or explained away by ardent supporters of Hunt such as the aforementioned individual. Indeed, since White's documentation shows Hunt to be immune to correction, can we really expect Hunt's supporters to be any different?


Bob said...

All too true...
I used to respect Hunt's apologetic work on the various cults like the expose on the Mormon church "The God makers". However seeing his gross unscholarly work on the issue of Calvinism I can't help but question the merits of his other research (although it seems on the up and up). It's a real bummer, I read in a review of WLITS that Hunt on a radio program announcing his next work was going to tackle calvinism confessed that he really didn't even know what calvinism taught...I'm sorry but that is a wretched start to polemics.

I read some stuff in the "Berean Call" recently on calvinism and Hunt gave some ridiculous story about how calvinism had ruined this families life...Hunt actually went so far as to say that if all you know is the calvinist gospel you are not saved.

Anonymous said...

Amazing that this "scholar" named Hunt was so favored until he hit the "calvin nerve" and became ignorant all of a sudden...

Dennis Richardson said...

The obvious depth, breadth and height to what John Calvin saw in Christ's gospel by Paul was too great for a limited intellect of the late David Hunt. Romans 9 is so filled with a concept of a sovereign deity, what literary moron could miss it? Generations of the greatest Bible scholars who have ever lived prove, when revisited, that Dave Hunt was a very limit mind, upon whom Jesus Christ and Holy Spirit did not enlighten. Too bad that Dave Hunt has led people astray. What can be said about his colleagues today, McMahon and David James? I believe that the near future is going to take down Berean Call as NOT being up to the task that they and NOT the Holy Spirit set before themselves. That despite the legitimate criticisms of Warren, Hybels, A. Stanley are involved misleading many. (The grand son of Billy Graham at Coral Ridge in Florida is also misleading that church.) Dr. D. James Kennedy will be successfully defended by future events against Dave Hunt and many others from Berean Call.

Anonymous said...

But Jean Calvin DID have 32 people burned at the stake after his (alleged) conversion to Christ, simply for disagreeing with his theology. Calvinism is basically the teachings of Augustine (founder of most Catholic doctrine) repackaged. I don't agree with Arminism either, but Jacobus Arminius was a truly godly man & I have no doubt that he is with his Saviour, as is Dave Hunt. Many who are mistaken are still redeemed in Christ. Remember that. If a Calvinist truly loves Jesus and is born again, I have zero doubt that I will see him/her in heaven. In the end the brand names are irrelevant, and ALL mysteries will be cleared up when genuine believers go to be with their Lord in glory. I am all for searching the Scriptures, but some matters will never be resolved on this side of eternity.

Berean said...

Dave Hunt responded to those claims of error by James White, they were not accurate or fit the narrative that James tried to sell.... Here is Dave's response to the open letter for anybody interested in truth..