Eric Metaxas Comment on Twitter Using Dietrich Bonhoeffer to Criticize Black Lives Matter is Owned By Charles Marsh of the Project of Lived Theology at the University of Virginia

Recently on Twitter Eric Metaxas attempted to use Dietrich Bonhoeffer to criticize the Black Lives Matter movement. In response University of Virginia Religious Studies Professor Charles Marsh put Metaxas through a wood chipper. Its good to see disinformation confronted and challenged. This is yet another blog post with a long Twitter thread about the issues with Eric Metaxas.  

“Truth is incontrovertible, ignorance can deride it, panic may resent it, malice may destroy it, but there it is.

Winston Churchill

The Lord will keep you from all harm—
he will watch over your life;
8 the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.

Psalm 121:7-8 NIV

Eric Metaxas 

Charles Marsh is a professor of religious studies and the director of the Project of Lived Theology at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. Marsh is an accomplished academic whose work was gone through peer review, criticism and more. Like many academics this blog has a lot of respect for him. When I was a grad student at Marquette University I remember having some of my work shredded just in class, and it was not easy. But at that level its part of the process and its necessary. Charles Marsh who teaches at the University of Virginia is also a Dietrich Bonhoeffer scholar. In 1994 he published one of the more academic books on Dietrich Bonhoeffer through Oxford University Press. The book is called, “Reclaiming Dietrich Bonhoeffer The Promise of His Theology.”  Here is how it is described at the Oxford University Press website. 

In this book, Marsh offers a new way of reading the theology of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a Christian theologian who was executed for his role in the resistance against Hitler and the Nazis. Focusing on Bonhoeffer’s substantial philosophical interests, Marsh examines his work in the context of the German philosophical tradition, from Kant through Hegel to Heidegger. Marsh argues that Bonhoeffer’s description of human identity offers a compelling alternative to post-Kantian conceptions of selfhood. In addition, he shows that Bonhoeffer, while working within the boundaries of Barth’s theology, provides both a critique and redescription of the tradition of transcendental subjectivity. This fresh look at Bonhoeffer’s thought will provoke much discussion in the theological academy and the church, as well as in broader forums of intellectual life.”

 

Charles Marsh Owns Eric Metaxas on Twitter

This blog really has little to no respect for Eric Metaxas. In my journey from evangelicalism I have had to wrestle with my thoughts about Metaxas. Inside evangelicalism he is the go to individual on Eric Metaxas. However his book has deep issues and its been panned by academics. You can read about some of those issues in, “Problems Exist with Eric Metaxas’s Dietrich Bonhoeffer Biography Which Contain Academic Concerns.”  And in addition to Bonhoeffer there is so many more issues with Metaxas. Marsh has published  a couple of works about Bonhoeffer and also several other notable works. Now before I continue let me state that I read about this issue at John Fea’s blog in the following post, “Charles Marsh unleashes a devastating assault on court evangelical Eric Metaxas’s misuse of Bonhoeffer as it relates to Black Lives Matter.” Now another issue is that I can’t follow Eric Metaxas as he has blocked me on Twitter. Metaxas is infamous for attacking and blocking people who criticize or who ask questions. In my view he is one of the bigger snowflakes of evangelicalism, but not as bad as Robert Jeffress of First Baptist Dallas. 

On June 16, 2020 it appears Eric Metaxas attempted to use Dietrich Bonhoeffer to criticize the Black Lives Matter movement. And like much of evangelicalism it came across badly. Charles Marsh saw it and wrote a proper response. You can see the response below as I published the thread. If I were Eric Metaxas I would crawl into a hole and hide, but Metaxas like Dinesh D’Souza has no shame – and also no credibility for that matter. My question that I have after I read the devastating response to Eric Metaxas on Twitter is as follows. Did Eric Metaxas block Charles Marsh also? Charles Marsh engaging on Twitter reminded me of Princeton University History Professor Kevin Kruse who is quite active on Twitter. This blog hopes that Charles Marsh hangs out on Twitter more and pushes back against the disinformation that exists. Historians need to engage the public more as they are needed now more than ever. 


14 thoughts on “Eric Metaxas Comment on Twitter Using Dietrich Bonhoeffer to Criticize Black Lives Matter is Owned By Charles Marsh of the Project of Lived Theology at the University of Virginia

  1. It’s not Black Lives Matter! It’s BLACK CRIME MATTER! The blacks being killed are those who had just got finished committing a crime within seconds or minutes of being killed. So the movement BLM is a joke, because they refuse to focus on PREVENTING blacks from committing crime to begin with. How do you teach the unteacable who doesn’t want to stop committing crime? You can’t. They alone are responsible for their own death.

    You complain about Christians for not loving their neighbor, how about those who hold a gun at night clerks robbing the store clerk? Blacks are doing that.

    Yet, blame TRUMP and/or cops and systemic racism? Whatever happened to taking your own responsibility for your own actions? Or is that a generational out of date old white people philosophy?

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      • Well, just as with CHURCH FATHERS, I have no interest in Bonhoeffer, or any other famous Christian philosopher or historian. I live in present day, and I’ve got the bible, and, plain ole common sense. Common, as in common sense. The knowledge of right and wrong. Lawless people roaming the streets at night seeking whom to devour, stealing, killing, destroying, then, they who do those things claiming they are liberating themselves from us old white Christians. It’s a joke.

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  2. How does this demolish Metaxas’s tweet? Marsh’s 26 part response backs up what Metaxas said about Bonhoeffer.

    Marsh doesn’t dispute that BLM is a Marxist, anti-Christian group that wants to destroy America and is harming black people.

    I’m kind of embarrassed for Marsh — he missed Metaxas’s point entirely and appears to be in “violent agreement” with Metaxas that Bonhoeffer supported black people.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Peter one of the problems with Metaxas work on Bonhoeffer is that he tries to put him in the evangelical mold. Bonhoeffer would not have fit. Metaxas used Bonhoeffer to base his rejection of the Black Lives Matter movement. Bonhoeffer was a diverse individual who was not tribalistic. He hung out with people of differing perspectives. He was influenced by the social justice movement when he came to he Bronx. That was before he went back to Germany. But Metexas did an awful interpretation that can’t be supported.

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      • I really don’t know what the big deal is here. To me it’s like, “so what?”. Why is this an issue? Just last night, I learn that the CO-FOUNDER of the BLM (MOVEMENT, WHICH MOVES A CERTAIN DISTANCE THEN IT STOPS) has identified herself as an educated MARXIST, and has TONS of “education” from the radical who blow up government buildings, etc. This is NOT about BLM at all, it’s just a name to THROW PEOPLE OFF on what COULD HAVE BEEN a legitimate grevience INTO A GOVERNMENT TAKEOVER of ideology. So I say again, BLM is a farce, it’s NOT REAL. We all got along in the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s, and got on the dance floor, so there is no such thing as systemic racism. That is just an excuse to anarchists to use to cause mayhem in our streets, and the left is eating it up, as if it is legit. It’s NOT LEGIT, AND THE RIGHT is too chicken to challenge them with force. The Government officials need to step up to the plate and DEFEND THE CONSTITUTION AGAINST DOMESTIC ENEMIES. This is about marxism, not BLM.

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      • Peter one of the problems with Metaxas work on Bonhoeffer is that he tries to put him in the evangelical mold. Bonhoeffer would not have fit.

        Sure, no problem, but irrelevant to the tweet.

        Metaxas used Bonhoeffer to base his rejection of the Black Lives Matter movement.

        No he didn’t. Read the tweet:

        It’s one thing to stand w/blacks, as Bonhoeffer did, but it is sheer insanity to support BLM, a Marxist, anti-Christian group that wants to destroy America & is harming blacks in all they do. If you believe black lives matter you must stand against BLM.

        The way to show that Metaxas’s tweet is false is to disprove any of its claims. I don’t even know why he mentioned Bonhoeffer — probably because he wanted to toot his own horn as a Bonhoeffer scholar.

        Bonhoeffer’s stance on his own local anti-Christian group that wanted to destroy America and harmed non-Aryans is clear, and was not disputed by Metaxas or Marsh. Marsh’s response does not make the case that Bonhoeffer would support BLM, and does not address Metaxas’s primary charge that BLM is Marxist, anti-Christian, wants to destroy America, and harms black people (“all” is hyperbole).

        He was influenced by the social justice movement when he came to he Bronx.

        Which is why Metaxas said that he supported black people.

        The social justice movement of the 1920s and 1930s has almost nothing to do with the social justice movement of today. Social justice today is about hate, hurting people and scapegoating. They’re the ones trying to get people fired for disagreeing, burning down (black-owned!) businesses in the name of George Floyd, or attacking people because of their race. They use evil slogans like “silence is violence” and promote a racist re-definition of the word racism. They are not the good guys.

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  3. If you ask me, I think it is Marsh that needs to get owned, not Metaxas. Marsh is too stupid, and blind that he can’t see the illegitamacy of the BLM. He thinks that BLM has something to say. HE doesn’t realize that blacks can save their own lives by just being LAW ABIDING CITIZENS in a RULE OF LAW society.

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    • The media supports BLM’s extremism so they push BLM as if it is the voice of black people and the only proper response to police brutality and racism. However, most black people do not support BLM, and a recent poll shows that most black people prefer the phrase “all lives matter” to “black lives matter”. Black Christians see the anti-Christian parts of BLM and they reject it.

      The immediate aftermath of the George Floyd death shows that Americans are united against police brutality and racism.

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  4. Peter what sources are you using for your information?

    I read a lot of blogs, news and and news aggregator sites. My favorites are the ones where the site doesn’t completely agree with me, but tolerates a polite discussion (as opposed to blocking commenters that disagree), and then posts links that are interesting to discuss. Slate Star Codex (just closed this week, hopefully not permanently) is run by a rationalist atheist leftist who is willing to criticize his own side from time to time, and who has had some extremely insightful posts about human nature and the culture wars. Althouse is a retired UW law professor who I would call a 1970s liberal feminist (i.e. before they sold out over the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal, and who by staying in the same spot has become more centrist as the left has moved left) who posts about politics, culture and grammar. Then I read a car oriented blog, a military oriented blog, a libertarian news aggregator, a sports blog (Outkick the Coverage), and a few others. My weekly bookmarks folder has Marginal Revolution and The Volokh Conspiracy but I find I am checking them less frequently these days. I also browse a handful of topic-oriented subreddits, but I find that the political ones are too toxic for me.

    If you’re wondering about the source for a specific piece of information I may be able to find a link.

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  5. Two observations.

    1 – One can affirm that “black lives matter” — which is absolutely true — without necessarily ascribing to every specific position of the organization that bears this name, or every specific position of everyone associated with the organization. So dragging out specifics of this organization as a rebuttal to the statement is just plain misdirection.

    2 – Did I really see in this thread the argument essentially being made that this is all fake news because if someone experiences violence at the hands of police that is just proof that they had it coming? If so, wow. Just wow. There are far too many corroborated incidents over many, many years of people being pulled over for no reason other than being the wrong race in the wrong neighborhood, of situations escalating when the person being detained did not escalate the situation themselves, of unarmed people being shot because someone “thought they saw something in their hands,” of evidence being planted, of people dying or being treated violently in custody. These incidents need to be taken seriously. There has to be accountability. We can’t just say, “well, they must have had it coming,” because to do so is to hand over absolute authority to the police as judge, jury, and executioner.

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    • Yes, Dave, that was me, and I stand by it. Driving while black is NOT the issue behind the anarchy. A criminal got a knee to the neck. CRIMINAL. He just passed a phony bill. Had he just stayed home, he’d be alive. HE was also a drug addict. He had meth and fentanyl in his system. Imagine if he had paid for his drugs with this phony money. He’d be a dead man in those terms as well. I don’t think drug dealers take to kindly for being ripped off, do they? I could come up with hundreds, if not thousands of examples of CRIMINALS being shot and killed by cops, and it has nothing to do with DRIVING WHILE BLACK.

      Tell me that Floyd would NOT STILL be breathing if he would have LOVED HIS NEIGHBOR AS HIMSELF? Robbing someone is a crime. Taking a cops tazor or gun…remember HANDS UP DON’T SHOOT? FAKE. Proven in a court of law that it was fake.

      I stand by my statements. TO THE END.

      About a WEEK ago, the following:

      https://www.thenewstribune.com/news/local/crime/article243586432.html

      BLACK LIVES MATTER? No, I’d say shoot them til dead. It’s bad enough we have POT SHOPS here, but to have black people robbing them at gunpoint? GUNS A BLAZIN! Driving while black, huh?

      IF black lives really mattered, THEY WOULD NOT COMMIT CRIME.

      Do you remember a day when cops used to say, “STOP, or I’ll shoot”? I sure do. Who is afraid of cops today? They don’t stop anymore. Do you remember a day that if you shoot a cop, it meant AUTOMATIC death penalty? No if’s, and’s, or but’s. I sure do.

      Obey the law, and no one gets hurt. LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF. If you love your neighbor as yourself, you are NOT robbing your neigbor, you are not coveting someone elses property.

      Was Floyd loving his neighbor? Or was he a common criminal? You decide. If I were you, I’d be MORE concerned about his eternal destiny, cuz ya can’t bring him back, now can you? But people are only concerned with THIS LIFE, not the next. Where is Floyd now? With Jesus? May we pray that God has MERCY on his soul, or should we pray that ciminals get away with crime, JUST BECAUSE they are black, because we wouldn’t want to OFFEND them, since they are being oppressed by the WHITE MAN???????? I don’t buy into the white man oppressing them at all. They CHOOSE their life. Do you remember when we all used to get along JUST FINE? Are YOU loving your neighbor? The black man? If so, why are YOU beling blamed for their oppression? Do you really have WHITE priveledge? I don’t, and I’m white. I’ve had to deal with the stigma of my adoption at just over a year old. ABANDONMENT issues. Low self esteem. Do I sit and sulk about those who have REAL parents? NO. I learned to deal with it, and overcome it. I had to work HARDER than others, because i felt inferior to others. And I succeeded. WELL? We all got along, once upon a time. A black actor, married to a mixed race woman, a host on America’s Got Talent, he’s also against BLACK LIVES MATTER. He said, White Supremecy without white people is BLACK SUPREMECY. There are a lot of black people against this “movement”.

      Who is their GOD? Is any of them Christians? I’d say, uh, NO, none of them are.

      Ed Chapman

      Like

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