Paul's Passing Thoughts

A Blog for TANC Ministries

Posted in Uncategorized by Andy Young, PPT contributing editor on February 19, 2016

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“Tell Me the Words” Why the Protestant Empire Must Not be Allowed to Stand Against Children

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on June 26, 2017

ppt-handleIt dawned on me two days ago that all is well. Yes, regardless of life’s insistence that doom awaits us at every turn and our final destiny with God is unsure, from time to time, I stop to ponder a real vision of who God is and all of life’s threats vanquish.

It is a vision of hope and love that promises that this present life has no hint of the glory to come for eternity in God’s presence. It beckons the memory of what the apostle Paul wrote: “What can this world do to us?”

It didn’t surprise me that this, in a manner of speaking, “vision,” or better stated, remembrance, came via my 6-year-old grandson; but I am struck that his words have impacted my life more than anything else I can remember save a few other experiences.

Recently, we have been attending my son-in-law’s Saturday night fellowship gathering around food, fellowship, the Bible, and prayer. David, and my daughter Heather have a table at the gathering where free items are offered. My grandson Blayne picked a Bible from the table and approached me while holding it up and saying, “Tell me the words grandpa, tell me the words.”

Understand this. We don’t talk to Blayne about God. Certainly, he sees the theme of our life while he is with us, but we have never made it a point to “preach the gospel” to him or “hit him over the head with the Bible.” From time to time we have answered questions about God that he initiated, but we have never been focused on indoctrinating him or taking him to church every Sunday when he is with us because we don’t go to church.

And, we don’t go to church because it is a lie. Yes, the whole shebang is a big fat lie. Please, save me the whole, “There are good churches out there” because that’s not true. Besides, during World War II there were good Germans in Germany, so what’s your point? However, I will grant you this: the more confused a church is about authentic Protestant orthodoxy the better they are as far as “better” goes. In fact, I would almost consider going to a church that is confused enough because they might accidently tell some biblical truth now and then…almost. Herein is the problem; the Neo-Protestant movement has taken over the vast majority of churches and this is a return to a refined understanding of authentic Protestantism. Hence, even accidental love and truth is in short supply if not absent in church altogether. I mean, do you pay any attention to the news at all?

I was reminded that life is an astounding thing when the words of a 6-year-old struck me more than any words I have ever read or heard in seminary. The request of this child to me proclaimed many truths in the Bible that came from nowhere but his very own heart. This is intuitive knowledge that God creates in the heart of every human being born into the world. Children lack knowledge and the errant interpretation of life experience that pushes back against that intuitive knowledge. And nothing pushes back against that knowledge more than church.

In church, children are bored, and subjected to the same formal structure that they experience in school all week long. Incredibly, parents trust institutions to tell their children how to think all week long, and then take their children to the institutional church on the weekend to do the same in regard to spiritual matters lest parents would do anything but feed/cloth their children and deal with the fallout of vile ideologies based on group think.

Sorry, but unchurched children seek God because God creates it in their hearts to do so naturally. And, if you don’t go to church, you will have the opportunity to exclude the following information: they are totally depraved, can do no good work, and regardless of what happens to them or others in church, it is the only way to obtain heaven. And by the way, God selects some for salvation while excluding others so God may or may not love any particular child. Maybe God loves you; maybe He doesn’t. Those are all really, really, bad ideas. Also, you can add general confusion because the church will deny they teach children this…while clearly doing so. You see, you only think you are being taught what you are being taught because you are ignorant, and as the notable Protestant scholar Albert Mohler has said, “Pastors are God’s ordained agents to save His people from ignorance.” Children don’t like confusion, unlike many adults, they want to “know the words.”

As a formally pathetic individual, I would have taken Blayne to an expert mediator (pastor) other than Christ to be told the words. How’s that working for ya? Most churched children are indifferent to God and basically dysfunctional. I believe many young adults opt out of college because education is boring and they get sick of being told how to think and what to think. Then they go to church on the weekend and get the same thing.

Your family is not an institution, and God’s family is no more an institution than any other family, and your family doesn’t function in an institutional setting. In a home setting children thrive, experience love, and ask questions about God that will astound you. Families thrive when they function as families, not institutions. Ability to contribute is not determined by authoritative caste systems that drive institutionalism, but body life. Healthy bodies function as each part fulfills its purpose. Institutions necessarily deny literal family life and the biblical new birth that brings people into a real family life. Functioning in an authoritative institution demonstrably denies literal family life and the new birth. Like any other corporate jingle, “When you are here you are family,” such is “family” defined by church. When you are there you hear a lot of family-speak, but try leaving for a while.

And if you don’t think children sense all of this, you are clueless.

We meet in homes as a family the way “the way” did for 300 years before Augustine came along because that’s what families do, and that is a message that children will hear loud and clear resulting in a true belief that they are really part of God’s family and were literally born into it. As I began telling Blayne “the words” on his bedside with Susan’s helpful input, I perceived that Blayne was having trouble grasping the concept of new birth into God’s family. But you want to know something? It might have been easier for him to grasp if I would have used the living example of my son-in-law’s home fellowship and why God’s people meet as a family. Children relate to what they experience in real life; adults use education and the thoughts of others to partake in cognitive dissonance. This is what makes adults less teachable.

Also note another intuitive notion found in children: family is where you find answers to questions about life. Blayne didn’t ask for a phonebook, he came to grandpa. What do parents normally do? They take the child to an expert because the church has taught them that they themselves are unqualified concerning spiritual matters. This is why our culture is utterly unable to think for themselves and are easily led to the slaughter like a dumb ox.

Another way I fell short is explaining to Blayne from actual Bible texts why these things are in his heart. How does he know in his heart that the Bible has “the words”? This would validate the Bible in confirming how he is experiencing life. In contrast, church will teach children that they can’t know anything in their heart (intuitively) because they are totally depraved. If you “know” what the church wants you to know, well, that means that you were preselected to understand it. Any knowledge that comes from within your totally depraved self is false.

FYI, no Protestant parent has a right to expect anything from their children but corruption based on the whole “sinners saved by grace/total depravity” motif. In fact, an inability to see or display such evil suggests that their “eyes have not been opened to the gospel.” Yet, regardless of witnessing this proclamation to their children week after week, they seem perplexed when their children behave like little despots. And plenary confusion of the like is not missed upon the children as well.

It makes me wonder: are children and the knowledge they are born with the single greatest threat to the future of the church? The church invests huge resources in children’s programs such as The Gospel Project and The Bible Project which teach children the historical-redemptive hermeneutic on their level. What’s that? It presents the Bible as a tool for self-condemnation in order to keep children at the foot of the cross. Supposedly, Bible “stories” are not “moral examples,” but rather examples of how totally depraved we are resulting in deeper gratitude for our ongoing need for salvation.

Right, teach children that…brilliant.

Of course, the institutional goal is the same as with most institutions; control, and many would do well to remember Christ’s warning about hindering children from their natural inclination to seek God’s kingdom. This warning also pertains to the unwitting actions of parents who relinquish their responsibility before God to teach their own children. In the final judgment, being duped like Eve will be no excuse; there is only one mediator between the human race and God, viz, Christ, not a myriad of men certified to think the thoughts of other men.

And as far as independent home fellowship networks being susceptible to cultism, remember that the very definition of a cult is the fusion of authority and faith which ALWAYS results in authority as truth. Home fellowships are predicated on body life, and life that creates the oneness of family, not authority. Home fellowships are a cooperative body seeking more and more unity around the mind of Christ, not a church caste system determined by men who buy authority through seminary degrees.

This whole matter of explaining the words to our children from our own independent study like good Bereans is a new endeavor, and we will get better with practice. Don’t worry, as we supply a free family atmosphere where these questions are encouraged, the children will lead us, and in return…

…we will stand against the Protestant empire’s onslaught against what our loving God instilled into the hearts of our children when He knitted them together in the womb.

paul

Selling Salvation

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on June 26, 2017

First Baptist of Dallas

A Challenge to Protestant Pastors: Your Gospel is False and What You Should Do About it; Part 2

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on June 24, 2017

Yep, In Regard to Tithing, Pretty Much

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on June 23, 2017

I have been extremely busy of late resulting in little time to post anything, but I stumbled across this comment while doing some research on the internet. The comment pretty much sums up the historical truth about tithing, and I couldn’t resist using it as a made-to-order post. Enjoy.

Eric Hale January 5th, 2016 02:39 AM

Edited by PPT.

Did Jesus tithe? Did those in Israel that did not make their living off of the land, (the butcher, the baker, the candle stick maker and Omar the tent maker) tithe? No, they did not. They paid the temple tax. We like to twist actual scriptures out of context and make them relevant for today and use them as a tool/club to control people. The only verse applicable to modern day Christianity is 1st Corinthians 9:7 (cheerful giver) not cheerful tither…. the church went for the tithe in the 3rd Century when Constantine made Christianity the official religion of the day, and introduced Santa Clause, The Christmas tree, and the Easter bunny to Christianity. The Church became an institution, cathedrals are expensive, and Malachi 3:10 became the weapon of choice out of the Old Testament to build big church buildings [because infrastructure displays authority]. The modern day church spends the majority of its funds on buildings, thus neglecting its main responsibility: widows and orphans. That is why the government takes care of widows and orphans; because the church is too busy making mortgage payments. How many church buildings did Jesus build? Go ye therefore and build buildings? NOT! How many church buildings were constructed during the book of Acts? They met in facilities already built [private homes to be exact]. Churches could rent a vacant building, everyone bring their own lawn chair, have a small leased office space, etc…[or just simply meet in homes as intended] low overhead means more funds for ministry.

Ground Zero: Pope Gregory and New Calvinist Gospel Contemplationism

Posted in Uncategorized by Andy Young, PPT contributing editor on June 20, 2017

ppt-jpeg4Originally published December 13, 2012

Let’s just take one contemporary example: a Presbyterian church that is now a mere shell of what it was; the remains of a war over the arrival of a New Calvinist pastor who exhibited outrageous behavior and leadership style. Today, some parishioners stand dumbfounded that the Presbytery took positive steps to keep said pastor in place.

As TANC, our newly formed think tank that researches Reformed theology continues to journey into church history for answers, the reasons for present-day tyranny in the church become clearer every day. First, it is driven by the gospel that founded the Reformation. Simply put, it is a gospel that does not believe that people change, but are rather called to contemplate the saving works of Christ in order for His righteousness to be manifested in one of two realms. Whether Baptist, Methodist, or whatever, this Reformed seed, the idea that people really don’t change is at the core of their function though they would deny it verbally. The Western church as a whole buys into this basic concept.

Secondly, the basic concept of spiritual elitists ruling over the totally depraved. You know, the they really can’t change crowd. The Reformation clarion call of total depravity—what’s our second clue if we need one? The spiritual is accessed through the chief contemplationists, and since they have the dope directly from God, they should rule over the totally depraved. Look, I have been a Baptist since 1983, and this is how it works. Again, we wouldn’t verbalize that, but to some degree it is true of all Western denominations because we are the children of the Protestant Reformation. What were we protesting? Naughty philosopher kings; past that, not much.

If we don’t change, the church doesn’t either. Think about that. And we wonder why things are a mess. Apparent growth in numbers is being driven by something else other than a true gospel. And the Reformers deny that while pontificating total depravity. It is testimony to the depth of which this Protestant construct has dumbed down the average parishioner; i.e., the totally depraved change. And nobody blinks. The assumption is that total depravity only pertains to the unregenerate, but that’s not the case according to the Reformed gospel and its time for people to start doing the math on that. The “Nones” and the massive exodus from the evangelical church is taking place for a reason.

I’m not ready to declare Pope Gregory the Great the father of the Reformation and present-day New Calvinism just yet, but recent discoveries reveal some things that should be fairly obvious. We aren’t stupid, just trusting, and that needs to end. Christians need to take advantage of the information age and start studying for themselves as the Christian academics of our day refuse to be forthcoming. They didn’t forget to mention that sola fide is also for sanctification. They didn’t forget to mention the total depravity of mankind AND the saints. They didn’t forget to mention that the new birth is a realm and not something that happens in us—it’s deliberate deception because the Reformed gospel is “scandalous.” The totally depraved are not “ready” for what the enlightened class of philosopher kings understand. By the way, many seminary students will testify to the fact that they are told as much by their seminary professors. Seminaries are where you go to be certified for the purpose of ruling over the totally depraved in order to, in Al Mohler’s words, “save them from ignorance.” Sorry, I prefer to let the Bible and Google save me from ignorance. Thank goodness for the Gutenberg press.

Monks. That’s what we are missing here. Martin Luther. Ever heard of him? He was a monk. What is the very premise of monkism? It’s the idea that the spiritual is obtained by contemplationism. And monkism is not unique to the Catholic Church—it is the link from the Catholic Church to the ancient concept of mystic dualism. Though it pans out in various different ways, it’s the idea that matter is evil and spirit is good. In other cases, it holds to the idea that both good and evil are necessary to understand true reality. Good defines evil, and evil defines good. The more you understand both, the more “balance” you have in the universe. Then there is the goal to birth the spiritual into the physical through meditation/contemplationism. Like I said, there are many takes on the basic approach.

Monks believe that the physical or world realm is a distraction from the spiritual realm. In some cases, they believe that all matter is merely a form of the perfect, or spiritual. Hence, monasteries. Traditionally, monasteries have been clearing houses for the dope from God through contemplationism. And since they have the dope, they should rule the totally depraved for their own good. In some spiritual caste systems, the monks rule directly, in others like the Catholic Church, the monks are the Scribes and Prophets for the rulers; i.e., the Popes.

The fact that monkism would be part and parcel to any doctrine formulated by Martin Luther is a no-brainer. Mysticism is simply going to be a significant factor, and so it is with Protestantism. This becomes more apparent when you consider the core four of the Protestant Reformation: Martin Luther, John Calvin, St. Augustine, and Pope Gregory the Great. Luther’s 95 Theses was a protest against naughty Popes, but he was completely onboard with the Catholic caste system. When his 95 Theses resulted in the unexpected societal eruption that took place, he presented a doctrinal disputation to the Augustinian Order in Heidelberg. And don’t miss this:

In that Disputation, Luther postulates Pope Gregory’s take on the gospel which is the exact same calling card of present-day New Calvinism. In theses 27 of his Disputation, Luther states the following:

Thus deeds of mercy are aroused by the works through which he has saved us, as St. Gregory says: »Every act of Christ is instruction for us, indeed, a stimulant.« If his action is in us it lives through faith, for it is exceedingly attractive according to the verse, »Draw me after you, let us make haste« (Song of Sol. 1:4) toward the fragrance »of your anointing oils« (Song of Sol. 1:3), that is, »your works.«

There could not be a more concise statement in regard to the New Calvinist gospel. Deeds in the Christian life come from the same acts in which Christ saved us. Secondly, they are not our acts, but the acts of Christ applied to our Christian lives by faith alone. Thirdly, when the works of Christ are applied to our Christian lives by faith alone, it will always be experienced by the exhilarating emotions of first love—this is the mark of Christ’s active obedience being manifested in the spiritual realm through the totally depraved. We “reflect” the works of Christ by faith alone. Even John MacArthur has bought into this nonsense, claiming that obedience to the Lord is “always sweet, never bitter.” Francis Chan states that it always “feels like love.” And of course, poke John Piper’s rhetoric anywhere and this same monkish mysticism comes oozing out.

Moreover, Luther states this same concept from many different angles in his Disputation, and theses 28 is clearly the premise for John Piper’s Christian Hedonism.

No wonder then that New Calvinists of our day sing the praises of Pope Gregory. Here is what heretic David Powlison stated in an interview with Mark Dever’s 9Marks ministry:

Caring for the soul, which we try [try?] to do in biblical counseling, is not new. Two of the great pioneers in church history would be Augustine and Gregory the Great. Even secular people will credit Augustine’s Confessions as pioneering the idea that there is an inner life. Augustine did an unsurpassed  job of tearing apart the various ways in which people’s desires become  disordered. Gregory wrote the earliest textbook on pastoral care. He pioneered diverse ways of dealing with a fearful person, a brash and impulsive person, an angry person, an overly passive person. He broke out these different struggles and sought to apply explicitly biblical, Christ-centered medicine—full of Christ, full of grace, full of gospel, and full of the hard call of God’s Word to the challenges of life.

Powlison points to Pope Gregory and Augustine as the pioneers of biblical counseling using a “Christ-centered,” “full gospel” approach. And what was that approach? It was primarily contemplationism and dualism. In fact, Gregory practically saw “doing” as a necessary evil. In Roland Paul Cox’s Masters dissertation, Gregory the Great and His Book Pastoral Care as a Counseling Theory, Cox states the following:

The overall theme in Gregory’s dichotomies is balance. It is possible that this comes from Gregory’s own struggles in balancing his desire for the contemplative life of a monk versus his reluctant, but active, service as ambassador to Constantinople and pope.“The Regula Pastoralis was in large part devoted to describing how to reconcile the two types of life. He came to the conclusion eventually that while the contemplative life was the better and more desirable of the two, the active life was unavoidable, and indeed necessary in order to serve one’s fellow man.…There could be no better exemplar of the two lives than Gregory himself, but he would have been less than human had he not from time to time mourned the fact that so much of his time must be given over to the active at the expense of the contemplative” [Jeffrey Richards, Consul of God : The Life and Times of Gregory the Great (London ; Boston: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1980), 57.].

Powlison, in true Reformed tradition, invokes the either/or hermeneutic, or the either cross story or glory story hermeneutic of Luther’s Disputation by suggesting that any denial of this “Christ-Centered” approach is a wholesale denial of an “inner life.” In other words, suggesting that doing something should be emphasized as much as contemplationism is paramount to denying that there is an inner life. Such statements by Powlison are indicative of his utter lack of integrity.

In addition, Gregory’s penchant for mystic dualism is seen in the same dissertation:

Gregory’s view of health revolved around balance. In Pastoral Care 34 dichotomies are given. For each one Gregory discusses how either extreme is detrimental. The following are a few examples of Gregory’s dichotomies: poor/rich, joyful/sad, subject/superiors, wise/dull, impudent/timid, impatient/patient, kindly/envious, humble/haughty, obstinate/fickly, and gluttonous/abstemious. Further, Gregory explains how certain traits although they appear to be virtues are in reality a vice. For example, in describing the dichotomy of impatient and patient, Gregory says the following about the patient: “…those who are patient are to be admonished not to grieve in their hearts over what they suffer outwardly. A sacrifice of such great worth which they outwardly offer unimpaired, must not be spoilt by the infection of interior malice. Besides, while their sin of grieving is not observed by man, it is visible under the divine scrutiny, and will become the worse, in proportion as they claim a show of virtue in the sight of men. The patient must, therefore, be told to aim diligently at loving those whom they needs must put up with lest, if love does not wait on patient” [Pastoral Care: pp. 109, 110].

In other words, self-control is a vice. Unless cross-centered love is mystically applied according to Luther’s Disputation (theses 28), the latter evil of self-control is worse than the former sin of being offended since such offences serve to humble us (LHD theses 21).

What goes hand in metaphysical hand in all of this is good ole’ ancient spiritual caste tyranny. As Cox further observes,

Shortly after becoming pope, Gregory wrote Pastoral Care. In addition as pope, he reorganized the administration of the papal states, he maintained papal authority in the face of encroachments from the Patriarch of Constantinople, he established links with the Frankish Kingdoms, and most importantly (for these English writers), he sent a party of monks, led by Augustine, to convert the Anglo-Saxons.

Gregory was very influenced by the Rule of St. Benedict and Benedictine monks who came to Rome after the monastery that St. Benedict founded was burnt. In some letters, Gregory calls his work Pastoral Rule. “There is every reason to assume that Gregory in conceiving the plan for Liber Regulae Pastoralis [Pastoral Rule] intended to provide the secular clergy with a counterpart to this Regula [the Rule of St. Benedict].

….This culture of rulers and emperors also helps explain why Gregory saw Pastoral Care and Pastoral Rule as one in the same. By modern day standards, Gregory would be considered overly authoritarian.

A culture of “rulers and emperors” had precious little to do with it, but rather ancient spiritual caste systems that answered the supposed preordained call of God to control the totally depraved. With the sword if necessary. While many of these systems were based on mythology prior to the 6th century, Plato systematized the idea and gave it scientific dignity. But his trifold theory of soul consisting of king, soldier, and producer called for a sociological counterpart that was a mirror image to fit the need. Sir Karl Raimund Popper, considered the greatest philosopher of the 20th century, fingered Platonism as the primary catalyst for religious and secular tyranny in Western culture. And Plato’s mystic dualism (shadows and forms) added not just a little to the MO of the Reformers. According to church historian John Immel:

Calvin’s Institutes (1530) is the formal systematic institutionalization of Platonist/Augustinian syncretism that refined and conformed to Lutheran thinking and became the doctrinal blueprint for the Reformed Tradition [Blight in the Vineyard: Prestige Publishing 2011].

Christ promised us that He would build His Church and the gates of hell would not prevail against it. The idea that the Reformers rescued His church from the gates of the Roman Catholic Church is both laughable and the biggest hoax ever perpetrated on mankind. The idea that Christ needed, and continues to need the services of Plato’s philosopher kings is arrogance on steroids. Somewhere, God’s church moves forward. Let us shed the Reformed load that hinders and find our place in that true church.

paul

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