Paul's Passing Thoughts

Revised: Seven Points of Protestantism’s Anti-Gospel

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on November 19, 2012

1. Progressive Justification

John Calvin’s fourteenth chapter of book three in the Calvin Institutes is entitled, “The Beginning of Justification. In What Sense Progressive.” He then proceeds in sections 9, 10, and 11 to explain how Christians are still under the law, and helpless to obey it for any merit before God; i.e., any attempt at works in sanctification is works salvation (his Sabbath Rest Sanctification CICR 2.8.29,30).  He then propagates sanctification by faith alone for the remedy.

2. Redemptive Historical Hermeneutics

This interpretive method reduces the Bible to a gospel narrative only. It’s not about anything that God wants us to do, but rather “what He has done.” “It’s not about our doing, but His doing and dying.” “Jesus isn’t a precept, He’s a person,” ad nauseam. This circumvents learning and doing (the very definition of a disciple), and replaces it with gospel contemplationism. It also circumvents love on the part of believers because anything short of perfect love according to the law is worthy of God’s condemnation according to orthodoxy. This is because the law is the justification standard rather than the new birth. Hence, one does not read the Bible to learn how to love God and others more, but to search for salvific truth in every verse that adds to one’s progression in salvation. In no uncertain terms, Protestant orthodoxy propagates “beginning justification,” “progressive sanctification” (really, progressive salvation/justification), and “final justification.” In Protestantism, the Bible is a tool for the progression of salvation, at least according to authentic orthodoxy.

3. Double Imputation

This is the idea that Christ not only died for our justification, but lived a perfect life on earth for the purpose of imputing that obedience to our sanctification. This view of double imputation goes hand in hand with progressive justification. Not to be confused with the correct view that God’s righteousness is INFUSED within us via the new birth while our sins were imputed to Christ. However, more accurately, all sin is imputed to the Old Covenant law of sin and death and Christ died to end that law. Double imputation is a staple Protestant doctrine, and obviously, if it was necessary for Christ to live a perfect law-keeping life so it can be imputed to our lives, we are still yet under law and thereby unsaved.

4. Gospel Sanctification

This propagates the idea that regeneration is powered by justification, and regeneration is a “process” or “progressive” instead of a one time act through Spirit baptism.   Supposedly, Christians “reflect” godliness by continually “revisiting the gospel afresh.” This is a gospel contemplationism that focuses on the same things that originally saved us: Christ’s death for our sins and our own sinfulness. We supposedly “preach the gospel to ourselves every day” to keep ourselves saved. In this “process,” we obtain a greater and greater gratitude for our original salvation which glorifies God and not us. A greater view of the cross is the goal, not an increase of godly character among God’s people.

5. Mortification and Vivification

This is another undeniable staple doctrine of Protestant orthodoxy. By returning to the same gospel that saved us to receive forgiveness of “present sin,” (mortification), we also experience “vivification” which is a “reliving of our original baptism.” Hence, the baptism of the Spirit, or new birth, occurs over and over gain instead of just once. Again, this is stated Protestant orthodoxy. And of course, this is a process that can only be obtained through formal church membership. This is what qualifies Protestantism as one of the most unimpressive religions of the world because most Protestants don’t even know what a true Protestant believes. At least Catholics know they are saved by church membership and most other religions possess participants that are educated according to their religion’s true tenets.

6. The Total Depravity of the Saints

Obviously, if we need the gospel every day, it is for good reason; we remain in need of the same gospel that originally reconciled us because our status as “sinners” does not change. For all practical purposes this denies the new birth regardless of the fact that Christ stated, “You must be born again.”

7. Law Determines Justification

In Protestantism,  Justification is not apart from the law; law is still the standard and therefore must be kept by Christ for us in sanctification. A perfect keeping of the law is required for us to be declared righteous; otherwise, it would supposedly be “legal fiction.” However, the apostle Paul made it clear that the “righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law” (Romans 3:21). Justification does not have to be maintained via a perfect keeping of the law by anyone; we are justified by the infusion of righteousness within us via the new birth. We still fail to love perfectly because our weak humanity has not yet been redeemed.

31 Responses

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  1. said, on November 22, 2012 at 4:15 PM

    “Though it is a holiday first celebrated by those stinking heretical, Reformed cultist, the Pilgrims, I want to wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving Day!”

    Actually, it was not institutionalized until Lincoln during the civil war. Which is ironic if you think about it from the point of the SBC since many of it’s founders were pro slavery and CALVINISTS. Boyce said he supported slavery because it was necessary to “disciple” the slaves. Nice guy.

    And more to the point, just a few years later show the Puritan Pilgrims were not so kind to them at all. In fact, they repaid the earlier kindness with simply taking their land instead of buying it. Of course, to admit such things must mean I am a liberal. We do so love our santized history.


    • paulspassingthoughts said, on November 22, 2012 at 6:03 PM


      Recently found out that US public schools originated with the Puritans. Interesting.


  2. said, on November 22, 2012 at 4:34 PM

    “Can’t wait to use our Cucking Stool server for the punch this year. Our Hangman’s Noose napkin rings are also a hit with the guests.”

    maybe we can “banish” guests who do not agree with us. (wink)


  3. paulspassingthoughts said, on March 26, 2013 at 9:23 AM

    Reblogged this on Clearcreek Chapel Watch.


  4. […] The Six Points of Calvin’s Anti-Gospel. […]


  5. Martin said, on March 27, 2018 at 8:33 AM

    “Not to be confused with the correct view that God’s righteousness is INFUSED within us via the new birth while our sins were imputed to Christ.”

    I’m more inclined to believe that Christ was actually momentarily infused with the worst kind of sin while on the cross. DOUBT. “Father, Father why have you forsaken me?” – 2 Corinthians 5:21

    Double Infusion.


  6. Tatiana said, on December 26, 2020 at 5:33 PM

    Sorry but Evangelicals are not at all like Jesus. Jesus did not stand like a misogynist screaming and yelling in a drunken rage then singing for two hours just to bother thy neighbor. I am with Joseph Campbell if you are going to be a scholar and study the Christian denominations in the end, the Catholics have it right. CHeck out Joseph Cambpell; he was an excellent scholar on religion. I find the Divine by the sea, in a seagull and in Nature in general so I guess i am a pagan but I identify as Catholic. When it comes down to it, the peace and love that Evangelicals lack and that I have is God and whether you find it in Nature or inn Jesus, Jesus and other people is just a “Mask of God.” Read it by Joseph Cambpell it’s superb. I really love M. Scott Peck’s People of the Lie” too. It describes the narcissism inherent in America. he was an ex priest and the author of the Road Less Travelled. I also recommend the Prophet by Kalil Gibran for one verse” “The deeper sadness carves into ones heart, the more joy it may contain.” Beautiful and true!


  7. Tatiana said, on December 26, 2020 at 5:37 PM

    One must experience the peace of God it cannot be obtained through intellectual inquiry or study of dogma. When we meditate in NAture we can feel God. If you cannot FEEL God’s presence intellectual banter is useless.God is experiential not intellectual. Take it from me. Until I began connecting I was studying comparative religion and the texts therein and felt NOTHING.


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