Paul's Passing Thoughts

TANC 2016: Paul Dohse

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on May 3, 2016

paulPaul became a Christian in 1983. His salvation experience was powerful and with much assurance. As he began studying the Scriptures for himself, contradictions between the plain sense of Scripture and his church experience increased more and more as each year passed.

Furthermore, though Paul could make some sense out the Bible that encouraged him to a point, for the most part, the Bible seemed to be confusing, mysterious, and contradictory. Paul’s initial salvation experience declined into confusion, doubt, and  at times despair. Eventually frustrated by the church’s comfortable coexistence with confusion and contradiction, he set out on a journey to make sense of the chaos.

After publishing a book on the Neo-Calvinist movement in 2011 that was the culmination of four years of research, he abandoned all presuppositions and began studying the book of Romans word by word. The goal was to draw conclusions from the literal grammar alone. In other words, just let the words say what they say regardless of anything.

During this process, a profound pattern in the book of Romans began to emerge: a righteousness completely separate from the law; the idea that justification and law are mutually exclusive. The idea that the ground of our justification is the new birth—not the law or any law-keeping by Christ imputed to our account. Hence, who keeps the law is irrelevant; the law has no part with justification. It’s not just man’s law-keeping that is separate from justification; the law itself is separate from justification which would also include any law-keeping by Christ. Again, who keeps the law is irrelevant—there is no law in justification; “apart,” means just that…APART! (Romans 3:21).

The gravity of this truth is immense because Protestantism and Reformed tradition are founded on the idea that Christ fulfills the “righteous demands of the law” in our stead.

How could the Reformers have missed such a simple point? And how did this blatant error come to define Western orthodoxy? And finally, what is the alternative? This will be the subject of Paul’s three sessions at this year’s Conference on Gospel Discernment and Spiritual Tyranny.

TANC 2016


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