Paul's Passing Thoughts

Reality Itself Disproves the Church’s Doctrine

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on November 11, 2015

project-2016-logo-4From the Huffington Post in 2013:

Citing the “serious sins” of its leader, a Texas-based ministry that promotes home schooling and “male patriarchy” has been shut down by its board.

Doug Phillips wrote on Oct. 30 that he would step down as president of Vision Forum Ministries and stop his speaking engagements after acknowledging an extramarital relationship.

His public admission proved to be a fatal blow for the ministry he headed. Vision Forum was geared for a segment of evangelical and fundamentalist Christians who profess a traditionalist understanding of Scripture, sexuality and gender roles.

In light of the serious sins which have resulted in Doug Phillips’s resignation from Vision Forum Ministries, the Board of Directors has determined that it is in the best interests of all involved to discontinue operations,” according to a statement on the Vision Forum website.1

What happens in reality continues to disprove the doctrine of the Catholic Church and its offspring, viz, Protestantism and its various stripes thereof. Between the two, Protestantism offers the more glaring contradictions and confusion.

Let’s just take Vision Forum as a prime example. Doug Phillips was often fond of referring to himself as a “sinner.”2  Likewise, Tullian Tchividjian, who also recently resigned due to marital infidelity,3 once boasted that he has never done one good work and stakes his assurance of salvation on that fact accordingly.4

Just how insane is church? People give their whole lives to the church and its sinners saved by grace gospel. This is the message they come to hear week in, and week out; yet, when a leader sins, he must resign to save the ministry’s credibility and subsequent financial support. What in the world is going on?

What is going on follows: the institutional church has been trying to save humanity from reality for over 2000 years. The problem with reality is mankind is basically good. Now, please note: I didn’t say that man’s basic goodness will save him, but nevertheless, man is wired for basic goodness. Why does this surprise us? Perhaps because of our Christian insanity. On the one hand, we are created in the image of God, a fact that Christians verbally toss about frequently, but on the other hand we are totally depraved? Which is it?

The case for basic goodness is stated plainly by what’s trending of late: the lost nor the saved will ultimately tolerate sinning leaders in the church or politics. This is because the world pins its hope on basic goodness. That’s a problem for the institutional church; if man is basically good, he doesn’t need the institutional church to find God and have a relationship with Him, and the church needs to be needed. If man is basically able, he doesn’t need institutional religion as an additional mediator other than Christ. That’s bad for business. 

Let’s pause for a reality check; clearly, there is evil in the world, but if man is basically evil, what would the world really look like? And in context of this post, if the function of parishioners was consistent with the message that they pay good money to support, no sinning leader would need to resign, and no ministry would lose support. There is a clear disconnect between reality and the “amen” echoed from the church pews.

And frankly, at pastors conferences and closed-door elders meetings, I think this disconnect is seen as the problem. The institutional church is trying to sell a difficult package, but nevertheless, it is a package they believe in. Resignations are primarily fiscal considerations that sometimes fail to save a given part of the institutional church industrial complex. Many church leaders, whether Catholic or Protestant, see resignations as indicative of the hard work that yet remains in striving for saints to really “understand grace.” However, progress is being made; one example would be the ministry of Pastor Jean F. Larroux, III5 in Presbyterian circles with perhaps the best example being Jack Hyles in Baptist circles:

What better example than pastor Jack Hyles who remained in the pulpit till his death in 2001. Hyles pastored the largest Baptist church in the US, boasting a membership of 100,000 and Sunday attendance approaching 20,000. Till this day, the Sunday School operates 250 school buses. Hyles was the personification of the first gospel wave that emphasized getting people saved and had very little emphases on life changing discipleship. And then there is this:

‘Hyles had also become known for his alleged immorality, specifically his behavior with his secretary (the wife of a deacon in the church)…. Besides Hyles’ own church and schools being scandalized with immorality and pedophilic activity (numerous FBCH men have been charged or convicted of child molestation), Hyles spawned a number of “ministries” (there are approximately 200 independent Baptist churches nationwide that hold Hyles and his teachings in high regard) that have been scandalized in the same manner. For example, seven Hyles-affiliated churches from 1984-1993 were rocked by child molestation scandals.

David Hyles, Jack Hyles’ son, had affairs with at least 19 different women at Miller Road Baptist Church in Garland, Texas, during the time he pastored there. (He was dismissed when a janitor found photos of Hyles having sex with a deacon’s daughter.) Back in the Chicago area (Bolingbrook, IL), and after David’s divorce from his wife, David was cohabitating with a woman by the name of Brenda Stevens. Brenda posed for pornographic pictures in Adam and Chicago Swingers magazines (in an advertisement for group sex) during the time she and David were living together. After David married Brenda, Brenda’s 17-month-old son by a previous marriage was found battered and dead at the Hyles’ home. The police still consider the case a murder and continue to view David and Brenda as prime suspects.’”6

This post is an idea for TANC Ministries’ 2016 project and is not meant to be an in-depth look at this hypothesis, but I want to close with another thought that is related: ministries that are fed by the following of men. Vision Forum is one example among many. So goes the man, and so goes the ministry. In contrast, the Bible makes it clear that any ministry founded on the following of a man has no credibility whatsoever and is false on its face value. Yet, most Protestant denominations are founded on some man’s teachings. Baptists would seem to be the exception except for those who claim a “bloodline” to…you guessed it…John the Baptist.

Project 2016 seeks to explore the extreme cognitive dissonance of the institutional church, and we hope to have the final product of this research available at the TANC 2016 conference in August.

paul

6Paul M. Dohse: The Truth About New Calvinism; TANC Publishing 2011, pp. 128, 129.

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4 Responses

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  1. Ryan said, on November 11, 2015 at 8:39 PM

    Paul, over the past year I have come to a similar conclusion. I believe that the majority of people are what I call “relatively good”, whether they are saved or not. By this, I mean that such people have a conscience and are largely willing to listen to and abide by that conscience. But in doing so, it does not grant them any sort of salvation, or bring them any closer to God. But they are able to do good works.

    On the other hand, I believe that there are some people who are inherently evil, namely those whom psychologists and psychiatrists term as narcissists and psychopaths.

    Also, evangelical Protestant Christianity leaves us blind, naive, and suscepible to being victims becuase we are not taught or otherwise deny these essential truths about human nature.

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    • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on November 11, 2015 at 9:46 PM

      Right, and more than likely, the conscience is formed by what one is taught and experiences as they grow up. If the conscience is a judge, and it is according to Romans, judgement is determined by whatever law informs the judge. More than likely, sociopaths, psychopaths, and narcissists are the product of how their consciences have been informed over the years. The conscience reacts to what has informed it.

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  2. lydia00 said, on November 12, 2015 at 3:55 PM

    “Also, evangelical Protestant Christianity leaves us blind, naive, and suscepible to being victims becuase we are not taught or otherwise deny these essential truths about human nature.”

    Yes! Because they are taught to accept harmful actions against themselves and others by long time professing Christians. If hey don’t, they are deemed ” unforgiving”.

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    • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on November 12, 2015 at 4:15 PM

      The Reformed disavow the concept of justice out of hand. This is common and unambiguous in Reformed thought. You can hangout with your family at church if you want to, but you are totally on your own. Do so at your own risk and that of your family.

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