Monday, June 04, 2007

Book review: Reformation — Europe's House Divided 1490-1700

(UPDATED: Recommandation retracted. See comments for reason. However, for those who can discern, it is a good factual book.)

I have just finished reading a book which I have bought some time back in 2005 while I was in UK for my Student Exchange Program (SEP). The book review for this excellent book (Reformation: Europe's House Divided 1490-1700 by the Oxford University Professor Diarmaid MacCulloch) is here on my website. However, there are some problems with the author, so if you want to read it, do read it with discernment.


Jenson said...

Is it this person?

Spiritual Israel said...

Now Daniel, this looks like a worthwhile book to read. A book for one to be more acquainted with the historical context and situation of the Reformation, at least from a secular's writer view point.

Spiritual Israel said...

I have a question: why is it that any comments on your blogs must be approved by the blog owner? Just wondering.

ddd said...

Hello Jenson,

it would seem so. Sadly. No wonder his book has a distinct pro-homosexual slant, though very slight and subtle.

ddd said...

Hello Pastor Paul,

well, this is my blog, and I don't want anybody to just hijack it to promote their own agenda, or to slander anyone. Thus, all posts must abide by the blog rules. I dislike anonymous comments as there is no accountability for people who make such comments. And that's why all comments are moderated. However, my policy is that as long as you follow the rules, your posts would definitely go through; you do not necessarily have to agree with me.

Jenson said...

"Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you."


Is this your way of showing discernment and maturity? Or are you rather naive?

Diarmaid MacCulloch is a member of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Religious Archives Network. Does that mean anything?

There are far better books out there discussing the Reformation, written by men who lived through it. Why not read them first?

Why on earth do you have to review this book in public?

vincit omnia veritas said...

Dear Daniel,

Personally, I will not recommend a book by a God-hating, pro-homosexual writer. Not safe for bible students and undiscerning Christians. Worse, taking into account of the pro-homosexual agenda in Singapore, it is really bad timing.

The following article is for your edification.

"Diarmaid MacCulloch blasphemes Scripture, insults Pope, Catholics,and Protestants"

Taken from Church of England Newspaper 2nd October 2003

Title of Article: Bible 'is just plain wrong on homosexuality'

The Bible is plain wrong on homosexuality and the Church has to accept this, according to Professor Diarmaid MacCulloch one of the leading church historians, who, in his new book forecasts a schism in the Western Church along the lines of the Reformation.
In an interview on Radio 4 Professor MacCulloch, argued that the time may have come for the Anglican Church to say “enough is enough” and to split. He said that the divisions between conservatives and liberals were not just Anglican rows but threatened to engulf the whole of Christendom.

He said of his latest book on the Reformation that while a huge gulf developed between Roman Catholics and Protestants, a paranoiac hatred of homosexuals remained the same. He similarly characterised the agreement of Ian Paisley and the Pope on homosexuality as a position of ‘hatred’ of homosexuals.
Professor MacCulloch’s outspoken remarks only two weeks before the emergency Primates’ Meeting at Lambeth Palace will cause dismay to many Anglicans who hope a split can be averted over homosexual bishops.

As Professor of the history of the church at Oxford, Diarmaid MacCulloch’s seminal work on Cranmer won him many admirers in the Church of England. His outspoken views on homosexuality were first publicly expressed when he pulled out of a lecture at Lambeth Palace Library in protest at the traditionalist 1998 vote on homosexuality by Anglican bishops.

He claims in his new book ‘Reformation: Europe’s House Divided’ (Allen Lane) that both Protestantism and Catholicism are now faced with equally momentous challenges to authority on the question of homosexuality. “This is an issue of biblical authority.
Despite much well-intentioned theological fancy footwork to the contrary it is difficult to see the Bible as expressing anything else but disapproval of homosexual activity, let alone having any conception of a homosexual identity,” he writes.

The divisions between modern Christians, he argues, is whether they model their view of biblical authority on the assumptions of biblical authority before or after 1700.

He argues: “There is certainly still a house divided among heirs of the Reformation and the Counter-Reformation but now the partitions have been replaced and put up in different places. The outcome of that debate remains one of the defining open questions of western culture for the coming century.”

ddd said...


I happen to have the book, so I read it and found it rather useful, and therefore reviewed it. OK, so it turns out he is pro-homosexual, which I didn't know then. So what do you want me to do now?


Thanks for the article. As I have told Jenson, I didn't know about that then. I would consider my next step.

ddd said...

OK, slight changes made.

Jenson said...

Daniel, you have written a lot of material, some of which I have criticised. But, this is the final straw for me. Get rid of the book and the review!

This review is only suitable for private conferences. If your purpose of putting this review is to provoke a negative reaction from people like myself, so as to stop me from visiting your blog, you win.

I know the gay community here (...soon it will be in Singapore) is EXTREMELY HOSTILE against Christianity, so I simply cannot imagine any Christian supporting their cause.

NB: I am one of the signatories in the protest against the Sexual Orientation Regulations.

ddd said...


Please, be reasonable. Since when did doing a review become a matter of spporting their cause? This book of his is just a historical book, unless you want to treat it otherwise. Would you buy a Maths textbook written by a homosexual teacher? Or would you say that buying such a textbook would = supporting the militant homosexual agenda? I have already removed my recommendation, as it is.

The way you fundamentalists work is truly a wonder to behold. It is alright for you and like-minded folks to slam people who violate your pet principles on i.e. the Sabbath (practices), but it is not all right for others to publicly expose heretics and call them as such (doctrines). Go figure... Would you love heretics more than 'troublemakers' like me? Rick Warren would be proud...

You are welcome to choose whether you want to continue looking at my blog; other all it is your choice to do what you want to do with your time...