Paul's Passing Thoughts

Election Verses Foreknowledge Isn’t Even the Point; the Gospel is the Point

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on March 31, 2012

I am amazed at how God’s people have been distracted throughout the years over the election/foreknowledge debate. Wow, what a boondoggle for people of Reformed theology who don’t want folks looking too closely at what Calvin, Luther, and Augustine really believed. And if Calvin is Luther/Augustine light, there is even a bigger problem.

Yes, the Calvin Institutes are 1000 pages of mind-numbing theology, but if you know how to look, you can find the crux of the issues before Calvin lulls you into a hypnotic state with his linguistic drones. I was poking around in the Institutes in an effort to discover what Calvin believed about the final judgment of mankind, and in the process, discovered Calvin’s blatant false gospel on pages 508 and 509. Like his New Calvinist children, he believes that sanctification maintains justification, or stated another way, sanctification is justification in action. This makes sanctification very, very, very, tricky business—don’t try it at home without Plato’s Philosopher Kings or John Piper.

Fact is, people who believe that God elected some before creation and passed over others are not heretics. You may not like their view of God, but they are not heretics. Fact is, people who believe that God elected based on what He foreknew people would do, are not heretics either. But folks who believe that we must maintain Christ’s representation for an ongoing justification by believing a certain way in sanctification are heretics. Maintaining justification by doing something, doing nothing, thinking a certain way, or anything else boils down to our participation in justification. If sanctification and justification are fused together —this is unavoidable. It’s a false gospel. Plainly, Calvin states on the aforementioned pages of the Institutes that justification is “perpetual”:

Moreover, the message of free reconciliation with God is not promulgated for one or two days, but is declared to be perpetual in the church (2Cor 5:18,19). Hence believers have not even to the end of life any other righteousness than that which is there described. Christ ever remains a Mediator to reconcile the Father to us, and there is a perpetual efficacy in his death, i.e., ablution, satisfaction expiation; in short, perfect obedience, by which all our iniquities are covered. In the Epistle to the Ephesians, Paul says not that the beginning of salvation is of grace, “but by grace are ye saved,”  “not of works, lest any man should boast” (Eph 2:8,9).

A: “Moreover, the message of free reconciliation with God is not promulgated for one or two days, but is declared to be perpetual in the church (2Cor 5:18,19).”

The message of “free reconciliation” is “perpetual” “in the church,” ie, sanctification by faith alone- which has never been orthodox.  Justification by faith alone has always been orthodox, but not the former. Moreover, 2Cor. 5:18,19[20] is clearly speaking of a ministry of reconciliation that we proclaim to the world as ambassadors, and is not a message to be continually propagated “in the church.”

B: “Hence believers have not even to the end of life any other righteousness than that which is there described.”

Yes, because to claim any good works is to do so in the context of justification. If “free reconciliation” is “perpetual,” then our efforts would be works salvation. But, by the same token, it is impossible to avoid that reality if the two are joined—regardless of any special formula that the Reformers supposedly came up with. No wonder the Institutes are 1000 pages; it goes back to the primary point of my first book: it’s a formula that attempts to instruct one on putting a round peg in a square hole. Secondly, the idea that the saints have NO righteousness is a denial of the new birth as actual new creature-hood, as opposed to being merely translated into a different realm.

C: “Christ ever remains a Mediator to reconcile the Father to us, and there is a perpetual -efficacy in his death, i.e., ablution, satisfaction expiation; in short, perfect obedience, by which all our iniquities are covered.”

Here, Calvin states that the “perfect obedience” of Christ is continually applied to our lives to cover for our inability to possess any righteousness. This is the continual imputation of Christ’s active obedience to KEEP us saved (“Mediator to reconcile”). This is heresy. In essence, we must continually practice a justification by faith alone in sanctification. We participate in maintaining justification by faith alone apart from works because justification is progressive. This is plainly a false gospel.

D: “In the Epistle to the Ephesians, Paul says not that the beginning of salvation is of grace, ‘but by grace are ye saved,’  ‘not of works, lest any man should boast’ (Eph 2:8,9).”

Calvin is clearly making sanctification part of the justification/salvation process. He makes no distinction between God’s graces in sanctification and justification. The grace of God based on the works of Christ to declare us righteous is not a finished work, though Christ Himself said it was.

paul

One Response

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  1. trust4himonly said, on March 31, 2012 at 4:14 PM

    Thank you so much for your site- I am really gleaning from what has been the “going ons” of the church today.
    I think that many churches are acting on simply a reaction to the pervasively immoral culture of America and their desire to “fix” it. The go back to the Reformation, instead of resting simply on Scripture, will right all wrongs- I call it dominionism. Just like Calvin, there is this thought and belief that they “the true elect” will take over all aspects of culture and transform it- and in their minds it will be “redeemed”. The opposite will occur and will only reap destruction. I love Scripture, because Scripture gives life and fills us with the desire to serve Jesus more; in turn the Holy Spirit then does His sanctification of the saints (as imperfect as we are and will continue to be, until His Return). If it be not by Christ, it is all for naught.

    Like


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