Paul's Passing Thoughts

You Believe a False Gospel If…

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on November 22, 2015

If you believe Christ died for our present and future sin—you believe a false gospel.

If you believe Christ came to obey the law for us—you believe a false gospel.

If you believe saints have NO righteousness of our own—you believe a false gospel.

If you believe sanctification is the growing part of salvation—you believe a false gospel.

If you believe you are a “sinner,” you are a sinner and you need salvation—you believe a false gospel.

If you believe that justification is merely a legal declaration—you believe a false gospel.

If you believe weakness is sin—you believe a false gospel.

If you believe the same gospel that saved you also sanctifies you—you believe a false gospel.

If you believe your sins are merely covered, and not ENDED—you believe a false gospel.

If you preach the gospel to yourself everyday, you still need salvation—this would seem evident.

If you see no need to interpret Bible verses in context of justification, or sanctification, or redemption…

you believe a false gospel.

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35 Responses

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  1. Anonymous said, on November 8, 2016 at 11:54 AM

    I’m proud to believe a false gospel

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    • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on November 8, 2016 at 1:37 PM

      Right Anon, you are so proud of yourself that you posted anonymously. Is that another Reformed paradox of some sort?

      Like

  2. Denise said, on November 8, 2016 at 11:19 PM

    I don’t understand the first point posted. All of our sins were future sins when Christ died. Can you explain this point to me?

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    • Andy Young, PPT contributing editor said, on November 9, 2016 at 7:32 AM

      Denise,

      Thank you for your question. I’d be happy to explain this in more detail. Authentic reformed protestantism (as systematized by Luther and Calvin) teaches that there must be an on-going forgiveness for “present sin” in the life of the believer. And any future sins committed by the believer removes him from “grace”. This effectively requires the blood of Christ to be continuously re-applied over and over again.

      Now I can understand where one might interpret this to mean that as far as I am concerned, yes, all my sins were “future” when Christ died, but this is not a Biblical understanding of sin and the law.

      Sin has to do with condemnation, and for an unbeliever who is “under law” the law can only condemn. But when a person is born again, the old man who was under law dies. He is reborn a new creature who is the literal offspring of God the Father. The law is now ended for him because you cannot condemn a dead man. The new creature is righteous, not only because he is the offspring of the Father, but also because the law is now ended for him, it can no longer condemn, and when there is no law to condemn there is no sin!

      So for the born again believer, ONLY PAST sins are forgiven because there ARE NO present or future sins that require forgiveness! The new creature CANNOT sin! (1 John 3:9).

      I hope that helps to clarify.
      Andy

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    • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on November 9, 2016 at 7:32 AM

      Denise,

      This is really hard to get our minds around because of tradition and what we heard in church week, after, week, after week. Christ died to end the law and all condemnation. If there is a future sin, our sins are not ended, we are still under law and therefore under condemnation. If we sin after salvation, we still need perpetual salvation to atone for perpetual condemnation to keep ourselves saved. The whole “If we say we have no sin” in 1John is a justification verse that addresses Gnosticism and is NOT a sanctification verse. Born again Christians do not sin against the law because the law is ended. The new birth changes the law’s relationship to the believer and sin’s relationship to the believer. The law no longer condemns, but is the Christian’s guide for love, and failure to obey the law is a failure to love…not condemnation. I have much more to say about this during this week’s radio show.

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  3. Todd said, on November 10, 2016 at 12:38 PM

    The more I read the posts on this site, the more I feel the weight of so much error, imbalance, improper focus, and improper interpretation that I’ve been under my whole life being lifted. Left a reformed baptist church 3 years ago (in part due to this site, and a few others like it) and its been one of the best decisions for my family ever! So tired of feeling like God is ticked and angry every time I fail or “sin”, and then I need to do really good for a while to make up for it and get back in his “grace”. Not fully there yet with everything posted here, but appreciate you all.
    Todd

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    • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on November 10, 2016 at 12:59 PM

      If this was the only testimony like this that we have ever received it would make it all worth it. That was my mindset when I started this ministry in 2009, and it remains. We live in the days of Noah when a small group is a vast throng relative to the age. Thanks Todd, your testimony is an immense encouragement. We are so thankful to have Andy as well to help correspond with increased numbers of people coming here because they share our love for the truth.

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    • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on November 10, 2016 at 1:08 PM

      “I need to do really good for a while to make up for it and get back in his ‘grace’”. Ie., do more church and be extra solemn during the Lord’s table. And if you have been really naughty, walk forward during the invitation and don’t wait for the 25th chorus of “Just As I Am.” Yes sir, you can expedite your atonement for “present sin” by walking down on the first verse. Yes, tithing, attending “every time the doors are open,” unspoken prayer requests (my personal favorite), and not asking any questions can be added as well.

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  4. Todd said, on November 11, 2016 at 1:18 PM

    I hear ya! Mostly it was the “contemplate/meditate on your sin and do deep introspection, then go back to the cross” that the reformed baptist church speaks of so much…the continual justification was talked about a lot, and what really got us is that most of the sermons were so defeating and depressing because no matter what the sermon message was about, it always came back to how much sin has a hold of us, or how depraved we are. And yes, we did hear how the pastors were responsible for the “care of our souls” and were the authorities a lot. Leaving the church for reasons other than death or moving away, was sin since you had committed yourself to that particular body.

    Saddest thing is, we left friends there who use to complain about being there, were depressed about attending, etc… but as soon as we left all of a sudden they act like they have no idea why anyone would want to leave the church. I feel sorry for them, the freedom we have now is something I’ll never give up to a man again. I am amazed at how duped and blind we can be, but I was there and understand where they are at. It’s almost like if you could just chip away a little at their cult like loyalty to the man/church and the doctrines(I should say, misinterpretations of said doctrines) then they would start to see the light, and then it would eventually break through like a leak in the dam.

    To note, my own “leak in the dam” started with my asking two different reformed pastors the following question: If we are totally unable to respond to the gospel, why did God have to close the eyes of certain people lest they believe”. If they are born dead, why would eyes need to be closed or hearts need to be hardened if they were already born “dead”. The answers I got all felt like the answers politicians give when put on the spot… a big long diatribe that never really answered the question. That little issue right there caused me to find arguments against calvinism and really think them through. Another thing was that just the simple reading of scripture just seemed to leave me questioning predestination and election. Why are there literally thousands of passages calling us to obey or follow or believe if we are unable to do any of it. How come God says “if you do this, I will do this” if its all predetermined already? I read Austin Fisher’s book, listened to some other people (even Greg Boyd, Peter Enns, Wesley, Leighton Flowers, Pauls Passing thoughts and may more) and it came crumbling down pretty quickly.

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  5. Susan said, on November 12, 2016 at 2:59 PM

    If you believe Christ died for our present and future sin—you believe a false gospel.
    So the true gospel is that Christ died for our past sins only? There are no present and future sins?

    If you believe Christ came to obey the law for us—you believe a false gospel.
    So the true gospel is that Christ came to fulfill the law and the prophets?

    If you believe saints have NO righteousness of our own—you believe a false gospel.
    So the true gospel is that saints believe God and it is credited to them as righteousness?

    If you believe sanctification is the growing part of salvation—you believe a false gospel.
    So the true gospel is that sanctification is growing in love, holiness and maturity?

    If you believe you are a “sinner,” you are a sinner and you need salvation—you believe a false gospel.
    So the true gospel is that we are dead to sin but alive to Christ?

    If you believe that justification is merely a legal declaration—you believe a false gospel.
    So the true gospel is that justification is a fact and not a legal fiction?

    If you believe weakness is sin—you believe a false gospel.
    So the true gospel is that weakness is a result of our fallen nature?

    If you believe the same gospel that saved you also sanctifies you—you believe a false gospel.
    So the true gospel is that faith and repentance saves us and love and obedience sanctifies us?

    If you believe your sins are merely covered, and not ENDED—you believe a false gospel.
    So the true gospel is that our sins are washed away as in the waters of baptism?

    If you preach the gospel to yourself everyday, you still need salvation—this would seem evident.
    So the true gospel is to no longer lay the foundation of faith and repentance, but to move on to maturity?

    If you see no need to interpret Bible verses in context of justification, or sanctification, or redemption…
    So the Bible should be interpreted in light of a grammatical and historical approach?

    Are the second statements accurate reflections of the true gospel? Or should the second statements state something else entirely? Are some correct and others not correct? I am trying to figure out what the gospel message is supposed to be on the basis of blog postings that tell me what the gospel message is not. So what exactly is the “true gospel message”? (I am asking seriously.) Susan

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    • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on November 12, 2016 at 3:12 PM

      We will be discussing that in about an hour here: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/falsereformation/2016/11/12/blog-talk-radio-false-reformation-live-saturday-11122016-4pm

      Liked by 1 person

    • Andy Young, PPT contributing editor said, on November 13, 2016 at 9:06 AM

      Susan,

      You are correct on most of these, and very close on the rest! Permit me to help clarify for you

      If you believe Christ died for our present and future sin—you believe a false gospel.
      So the true gospel is that Christ died for our past sins only? There are no present and future sins?

      Correct! For the believer, sin is ENDED because the condemnation of the law is ended. The believer is the righteous offspring of God who CANNOT sin. Obedience to the law is NOW the means by which the believer shows love to God and others. It is not a means of maintaining righteousness.

      If you believe Christ came to obey the law for us—you believe a false gospel.
      So the true gospel is that Christ came to fulfill the law and the prophets?

      Close. Christ came to END the law. The law is fulfilled in US as we use it to show love to God and others. Christs ENDING of the law by His death on the cross made that possible. https://paulspassingthoughts.com/2016/06/14/wait-believers-fulfill-the-law/

      If you believe saints have NO righteousness of our own—you believe a false gospel.
      So the true gospel is that saints believe God and it is credited to them as righteousness?

      Close. Believers ARE righteous as a state of being by virtue of the New Birth. The new creature is righteous because he is the offspring of the Father.

      If you believe sanctification is the growing part of salvation—you believe a false gospel.
      So the true gospel is that sanctification is growing in love, holiness and maturity?

      Correct!

      If you believe you are a “sinner,” you are a sinner and you need salvation—you believe a false gospel.
      So the true gospel is that we are dead to sin but alive to Christ?

      Correct! The old man is DEAD and so the law can no longer condemn him. The new creature is not a “sinner” because there is no law to condemn him, and where there is no law there is no sin.

      If you believe that justification is merely a legal declaration—you believe a false gospel.
      So the true gospel is that justification is a fact and not a legal fiction?

      Close. Justification is fact because the believer is righteous as a state of being by virtue of the New Birth.

      If you believe weakness is sin—you believe a false gospel.
      So the true gospel is that weakness is a result of our fallen nature?

      Sort of. Weakness is a reality of the flesh that is not necessarily related to the “curse”. Man always has the ability to choose how to use his flesh, to do good or to do evil. For the unbeliever, his master is Sin who only pays death wages. The unbeliever can CHOOSE to not obey the sin master and do good works, but the result is only less death wages. The born again believer has a new master who only pays life wages. The believer can choose to not obey the Life master, but the result is less life (this is realized by natural consequences of poor decisions in the hear and now as well as loss of reward at the Bema of Christ). But notice that in either case, the unsaved person doing good works does not result in salvation, but neither does the saved person doing evil result in loss of salvation.

      So a man’s propensity for choosing to use his flesh for good works or evil works is not what saves or condemns him. It is dependent on his relationship to the law! The unbeliever who is “under law” is condemned by the law. The believer who is born again is no longer under law and is not condemned. This is why when a believer fails to obey because of the weakness of his flesh, he is not condemned because a failure to obey is not sin that condemns. It may result in less life in the here and now and loss of reward, but it does not condemn so that he would lose his salvation.

      If you believe the same gospel that saved you also sanctifies you—you believe a false gospel
      So the true gospel is that faith and repentance saves us and love and obedience sanctifies us?

      This is true, but the above statement has to do with justification being progressive. The idea is that justification is MAINTAINED by sanctification, which is accomplished by “faith alone”, ie, “trusting in Jesus to keep the law in our behalf”. This is the false gospel of protestantism.

      If you believe your sins are merely covered, and not ENDED—you believe a false gospel.
      So the true gospel is that our sins are washed away as in the waters of baptism?

      True, this is one way in which the Bible describes it. But authentic protestantism confuses this by suggesting that the “washing” is a continual process that must occur throughout the believer’s life for new sins committed each day. The washing of regeneration is a result of the New Birth. Our sins are washed away because the old man died and a new creature is reborn in his place.
      More specifically, before the “promise” (Christ) came, the law was a guardian for OT saints. They were under the protective custody of the law, and any sins were imputed to the law and not to them. But when the promise came, Christ’s death ended law, and that ending of the law took those sins away, not just “covered” them. This is what is portrayed by the “scapegoat” in Leviticus 16:21-22.

      If you preach the gospel to yourself everyday, you still need salvation—this would seem evident.
      So the true gospel is to no longer lay the foundation of faith and repentance, but to move on to maturity?

      This is true according to Hebrews 6:1-2. But again this statement is simply another way of saying the same gospel that saves you sanctifies you. It is rooted in the false doctrine of progressive justification where one’s righteousness needs to be maintained by “faith alone”.

      If you see no need to interpret Bible verses in context of justification, or sanctification, or redemption…
      So the Bible should be interpreted in light of a grammatical and historical approach?

      Correct!

      I hope this helps clarify!
      Andy

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      • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on November 13, 2016 at 11:16 AM

        Well, there you go. I guess the whole…”You guys are all about stating what’s wrong with everyone else’s gospel while not stating what you believe the gospel is” can be totally laid to rest here.

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  6. Susan said, on November 13, 2016 at 4:34 PM

    I hope nothing that I have written in my first post here (above) is being interpreted as critical or judgmental of individual writers or of the site itself. We lose all non-verbal communication cues in single dimensional written forms of communication. You may have answered my statements in other postings/ articles but I do not know the site well enough to find what would be helpful to me.

    My reason for writing: I am trying to sort through my own questions, doubts and reservations about doctrines and beliefs – praying, reading and searching. I had been attending a Protestant Reformed Baptist (Calvinist based theology) church for about four months. They love and respect John Piper and John MacArthur. TULIP, sovereign grace and God’s glory are the cat’s meow.

    Honestly, I just might be “too stupid” to get it. How do I say this in a politically correct manner? I have listened to a few (recommended) John Piper podcasts and I am left dumbfounded. It sounds like double-speak and contradiction. God is portrayed as a monster in TULIP (as I see it). I don’t understand: Jesus plus nothing and faith alone — no repentance, no obedience, no surrender, no nothing! How can that be?

    The folks from that church seem to think all of this is perfectly reasonable and entirely consistent with what Scripture says. After lots and lots of reading, I am thinking that what is being taught is a revival of the centuries old Heresy of Quietism. (I am no theologian or Bible scholar, but Quietism seems to fit.) Suffice it to say, I haven’t been back to that church for two and a half months. I am not sure I will ever go back.

    That is the background from which I am writing.

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    • Andy Young, PPT contributing editor said, on November 13, 2016 at 4:53 PM

      Susan,

      You wrote:
      “I hope nothing that I have written in my first post here (above) is being interpreted as critical or judgmental of individual writers or of the site itself.”

      Oh absolutely not! I didn’t think that at all. I understood your response to be motivated by honest questioning and an affirming of your own understanding of the whole point of the post. My conclusion is that you indeed do get it! Which is why I attempted to answer your reply the way I did. It was clear that you were spot on with many of your answers, and on the right track with others and just needed a nudge in the right direction.

      “You may have answered my statements in other postings/ articles but I do not know the site well enough to find what would be helpful to me.”
      That’s ok. Again, we don’t mind honest questions from people who are genuinely seeking answers. And you are correct regarding the volume of material here at this blog. To date there are well over 2000 articles dating back to prior to 2010! So yes it can be a daunting task to glean through that mountain of material. So feel to free to ask any question without worry of being redundant. If there is an article that already addresses that issue, we will be more than happy to direct you to it for clarification!

      “Honestly, I just might be “too stupid” to get it.”
      No way! You do get it, which is why you are able to pick up on the vile doublespeak of the likes of John Piper and others. And that is exacly what it is; doublespeak. It is purposefully deceptive languange. So it’s not that you don’t “get” what Piper is saying, you have just been able to skillfully navigate through the deception.

      “The folks from that church seem to think all of this is perfectly reasonable and entirely consistent with what Scripture says.”
      That is because 1> they have bought into the lie of the “authority” of the church leaders, and 2> they have outsourced their brains accordingly. As a result they are Biblically illiterate, and when they do read ther Bibles, it is always through the interpretive prism of protestant orthodoxy.

      “I haven’t been back to that church for two and a half months. I am not sure I will ever go back.”
      That is probably the single-most wisest decision you could ever make! Come out from among them and be ye separate!!!

      I hope that we can serve to be a source of encouragement and fellowship for you to replace what you probably never really had in the insitutional church in the first place. Welcome to God’s Body of fellowship; His family!!!
      Andy

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      • Susan said, on November 13, 2016 at 6:09 PM

        Andy,
        Thank you so very much for your reply. I do have additional questions as your answers to me raised more items that I had not yet considered. It would be helpful to me if I could state what I am discovering/ understanding as to what is the true gospel (in plain English) and if I could get some additional feedback. I may be on the mark with some things, close with other things and off the rails entirely in certain areas.

        No, I am not fitting into the Protestant milieu. So called “normal folks” do not understand me at all. However, not to worry, I have been thoroughly “damned” by a number of fine upstanding clergy. I will not recount my wanderings in the institutional church wilderness, but suffice it to say that I am done! The one thing that has given me comfort is that I am walking away — in the opposite direction — from the crowds.

        Let me gather my thoughts and write my understandings. (If you don’t mind.)
        Susan

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      • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on November 13, 2016 at 6:25 PM

        The gospel is being literally born into God’s family as a new creature through the baptism of the Spirit. This happens when we believe on the death and resurrection of Christ:

        “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, You must be born again…And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life..For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.”

        From John 3…that’s the gospel.

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      • Andy Young, PPT contributing editor said, on November 13, 2016 at 8:12 PM

        Feel free to ask as many questions as you like. If you prefer, you can also write to us at mail@ttanc.com. Or one of us could contact you with your permission at the e-mail address you provided.

        Blessings to you!
        Andy

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    • John said, on November 14, 2016 at 4:32 PM

      Hello, Susan. I was so happy when I saw your entries and posts here, and your heartfelt questions. You’ve come to the right place, This site and its people are unbelievably patient and willing to explain things over and over until we get it. Well, I am John and I’m the resident commenter (no pay; just fellowship and good laughs, mostly at what I say or have said or tried (try) to say.)
      Susan, you hang around this site a week or two, and lights will come on in your mind like no Christmas tree can match. We don’t fight; we discuss. We don’t yell, we gel.

      Seriously, I hope you come back; we all have something we can teach one another, and knowing we are not under the law makes our stay here heavenly and alive with the things of God.

      Blessings to you,
      John

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      • Susan said, on November 15, 2016 at 6:44 AM

        I appreciate the welcome. Yes, my questions are heartfelt. I have been wandering through this site — blog postings and comments. I am also reading and commenting elsewhere on other websites and my collection of books (all things Christian and apologetic) is now at the point where it may well rival many of the pastors in my community. The result of my prayer, reading and questioning has been several epiphanies/ awakenings.

        I do not understand why the folks in the various Protestant churches don’t see these things. There seems to be little, if any, critical thinking, questioning, discernment, and/or individual reading and research. Nada! Instead, there seems to be unquestioning acceptance of whatever the pastor says about God, scripture, the gospel, etc. Certainly it is easier to just go along with whatever the pastor says. I find it simply astounding.

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      • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on November 15, 2016 at 8:21 AM

        Susan, if you can stand the language, the movie “The Big Short” is a true story about how a mere handful of misfits saw the housing bubble coming that almost collapsed the world economy. Actually, if I understand the movie properly, the American taxpayers bailed the world out. One guy in particular saw it coming and talked world class investment corporations into creating a “short” an insurance policy of sorts that would pay dividends on losses in the housing markets. They gladly took his money while literally laughing in his face. What everyone struggled with is the idea that this guy was the only one who was seeing it while all of the experts were laughing in his face. In the end, he and those few other people made billions on the investment (an investment predicated on the collapse of the housing market). This same reality can be applied to what’s going on in the church. The church’s false gospel of making the law the standard for justification rather than the new birth is simple theological math, but the Spirit will not look the other way nor will he honor or use error. Yes, it’s sooooo simple, when Paul talked of a righteousness “apart from the law” he literally and simply meant, a-p-a-r-t. Likewise, in the movie, when this guy showed some investors what was going on in the housing market they were totally blown away by the fact that such a simple concept was being missed en masse by the investment community.

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      • Andy Young, PPT contributing editor said, on November 16, 2016 at 12:38 PM

        It’s streaming on Netflix right now. I watched it last night, and you’re right about the language, but WOW! You’re right, the parallels to the institutional church are uncanny! Especially the part towards the end where the one guy talked about “authority” and how people do something because the authority tells them something is “thus and thus”, and they automatically believe the authority becuase it’s the “authority”! Just WOW! And also the part where the hedge fund guys were skeptical at first about the truth, but they took it upon themselves to look into it and do their own research and discover that, yeah, what this guy is saying is exactly right, and why is no one else looking into this? They would discover the truth if they would only take the time to do a little digging! Just amazing.

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      • Andy Young, PPT contributing editor said, on November 15, 2016 at 8:44 AM

        I do not understand why the folks in the various Protestant churches don’t see these things…there seems to be unquestioning acceptance of whatever the pastor says about God, scripture, the gospel, etc.”

        I believe there are several reasons for this.

        1> A sense of contentment and leisure which leads to laziness and complacency. Certainly the same Americanism that resulted in individual liberty and unprecidented achievment has lulled the populace into a sense of comfort and ease. They don’t have to work for the liberties that are theirs. As a result their focus their time on career, family, hobbies, etc. They would rather invest their time pursuing those things rather than truth.

        2> A deliberate denial of reality. An intersting study is the 80/20 rule. The part that most people are familiar with is the notion that 80% of the people do only 20% of the work and the remaining 20% of the people do 80% of the work. But the other part of the study has to do with how people respond to disasters. For example, whenever there is an evacuation notice given because of an approaching hurricane, they found that very few people acutally heed the warning or take appropriate action. This is because the majority of people don’t really believe it will be as bad as they say it will be, or they just deny the reality of what is coming because that means they will actually have to DO something about it. As a result, the casualty count is higher that it should have been because people didn’t take action. I see this play out the same way in the institutional church. The majority of people (statistically around 80%) don’t want to accept the reality that there is a possibility that one of the teachers/elders/pastors might be in error. That would require them to a> be good students of scripture, b> do the work of verifying what was taugh as good Bereans ought to, and c> take appropriate action in confronting the error.

        3> The unconscious belief that salvation is found in the institutional church. They will of course deny this outright, but this is the way they function in practice. Not just themselves, but look at the way they project this belief onto others. You yourself have testified how other “christians” believe you are unsaved because you don’t want to be a part of the church!

        4> Ego investment. Having devoted themselves to a theological system for so many years, and then having to face the possibility that it was all a lie, too many people are too proud to admit that they were duped. So they tell themselves that “no, it MUST be true”, and only reinforce the lie in order to save face with themselves and others.

        5> But I think the single-most contributing factor is outright unquestioning submission to authority. I think this ultimately factors into all the other previous reasons I mentioned above. Too many people have unquestioning faith in the leadership. “My pastor isn’t preaching error. No, not my pastor!” This makes it easy for them to come to church every time the doors are open, park their rear end in a pew or stadium chair, shut off their brains, and be told what to think. The leadership is equated with God Himself. When the pastor speak from the pulpit, he speaks for God. So to question the leadership is to question God! They are told this outright. How dare you question the leadership!

        Factor all of these things together, and you can better understand why it is SO hard for people to get out. If this sounds cult-like to you, it is! Protestantism is nothing more than a super-cult!

        Andy

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      • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on November 15, 2016 at 8:47 AM

        There is a ready-made post right there. Scary good Andy.

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      • Susan said, on November 15, 2016 at 10:02 AM

        You have no idea how helpful all of you are to me. Yes times five to all your points, Andy. I am/ you are/ we are part of a remnant — a rag-tagged band of misfits. Your five point response really should be its own post/ its own article. It should not get lost in a comment box. What you write makes perfect and complete sense to me, as does the story line on The Big Short. I may just rent that movie (foul language or not!).

        What I am seeing so very clearly with prayer and questioning and reading — scripture as well as other sources — is incomprehensible to my church friends. Eyes that do not see. Ears that do not hear. Minds that do not and cannot comprehend. The problem isn’t just justification. It goes so much deeper. It is pervasive.

        In the past year, I have wandered through an Assembly of God Church church (growth movement focus), a non-denominational church (purpose driven focus), a couple of Baptist churches (one Calvinist reformed and one traditional) and the Vineyard (charismatic). I did not step foot into the mainline Protestant denomination churches that are embracing same sex marriage, homosexual clergy, abortion, etc. I just can’t do it.

        By the way, if you read any of the growth movement and purpose driven stuff, the seeker friendly church is set up to trap and keep people. Everything from the rock band to the pastor’s casual dress to the book of the month club series with scripture as window dressing to kids ministry, etc. It is all a network marketing scheme.

        What is truly ironic is that one day in community group, the question was asked as to whether we could be deceived. I spoke up and said, “yes, absolutely, and the deception would be so subtle we wouldn’t even know we were believing a lie.” Spoiler alert: the “politically correct answer” to that question was: “absolutely not! we, at this church, enjoy the grace of doctrinal purity!” You should have seen the shocked/ stunned looks!

        I truly believe we are living in the last days! I am and I will be a fully committed follower/ disciple of Jesus Christ, and I am shocked to find I cannot be part of the institutional Protestant Church. Soon, it may not matter much because I believe the faithful will be gathering to worship in the “catacombs” (due to the persecution).

        I think the vast majority of these pastors have too much invested to reconsider and question the truth of their long-standing beliefs. They dare not! The cost is simply too high — jobs, careers, finances, friends, etc. It isn’t just the people and the leadership in the churches where these five points are playing out. It is also in business, politics, the economy, the stock market, in nations and in foreign policy.

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      • Andy Young, PPT contributing editor said, on November 15, 2016 at 10:17 AM

        “Everything from the rock band to the pastor’s casual dress to the book of the month club series with scripture as window dressing to kids ministry, etc. It is all a network marketing scheme…the vast majority of these pastors have too much invested to reconsider and question the truth of their long-standing beliefs. They dare not! The cost is simply too high”

        This is nothing new. It was going on 2000 years ago!
        “And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.” ~ 2 Peter 2:3

        What is interesting, while there is clearly a reference to the “big business” of religion and those in leadership profiting and exploiting the laity for their own personal gain, if you do a study on this it is actually a reference to slavery/menstealing!

        “When thou goest forth to war against thine enemies, and the LORD thy God hath delivered them into thine hands, and thou hast taken them captive, And seest among the captives a beautiful woman, and hast a desire unto her, that thou wouldest have her to thy wife; Then thou shalt bring her home to thine house; and she shall shave her head, and pare her nails; And she shall put the raiment of her captivity from off her, and shall remain in thine house, and bewail her father and her mother a full month: and after that thou shalt go in unto her, and be her husband, and she shall be thy wife. And it shall be, if thou have no delight in her, then thou shalt let her go whither she will; but thou shalt not sell her at all for money, thou shalt not make merchandise of her, because thou hast humbled her.” ~ Deuteronomy 21:10-14

        “If a man be found stealing any of his brethren of the children of Israel, and maketh merchandise of him, or selleth him; then that thief shall die; and thou shalt put evil away from among you.” ~ Deuteronomy 24:7

        Authentic protestant orthodoxy, and those in the leadership of it have literally made SLAVES of the laity! And the laity have willingly sold themselves into slavery!

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      • Andy Young, PPT contributing editor said, on November 15, 2016 at 10:32 AM

        “Soon, it may not matter much because I believe the faithful will be gathering to worship in the “catacombs” (due to the persecution).”

        One thing I found remarkable in going though our study in the book of Acts is that the Roman government was remarkably tolerant of “Christianity” in the first century. There are even recorded instances where the government authorities took steps to ensure religious freedom. Any persecution the “Christians” experienced ALWAYS came from the JEWISH RELIGIOUS LEADERS, because they viewed “Christianity” as threat to their orthodoxy and ultimately their position of power and authority!

        It is no different today! Any “government” where you see “christians” being persecuted is some form of church-state, where some religion has usurped the power of government to enforce orthodoxy (Islamic states for example). In America, while government is at worst antagonistic towards “christianity”, we still enjoy some semblance of religious freedom. But just look at what happens to believers in the institutional church who dare to question the self-appointed authority of the leadership! Talk about persecution!

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  7. Reformed Ink said, on March 19, 2017 at 2:47 PM

    Paul and Andy, I “tripped” onto your blog by mere accident and I’m glad I did. I was raised LCMS and eventually ended up in the Reformed camp and trust me, I may have embraced a popular theology but things just didn’t make sense. For YEARS I believed God absolutely despised me, hated me because of who I am, I tried explaining this to my wife but just couldn’t verbalize what I thought and felt, this went on for probably 22 years; it didn’t help that I had been diagnosed with clinical depression either.

    It just so happens that I read on of your (Paul’s) pieces on not being condemned under the Law any more and it drew my attention like a moth to a flame, the more I read, the inkling of hope that I started with is growing….I don’t quite understand yet but I’m trying. I would appreciate ANY direction as to where to start with your posts to get a better orderly understanding of salvation and living the Christian life; also, I noticed you talk much of Gnosticism and made reference to other writing you have on this topic, can you direct me?

    I notice Paul, you are in Xenia Ohio, I live just above Lancaster, Ohio, it’s nice to read some “home grown” ministry. 🙂

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