Paul's Passing Thoughts

Christians Behaving Badly Outside of Church and the Salvation Gas Station

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on August 30, 2016

ppt-jpeg4Electronic communication is convenient yet faulty. Personal communication is much more accurate, and when communicating electronically judgments about what is being said should always be tentative.

So, often, especially when trying to explain a theological concept electronically, I end up telling people, “I will write a post about this in the morning.” So here it is.

As anyone who follows this blog knows, I am totally against any “Christian” assemblies otherwise known as “church” that are institutions. Why? Because God’s family is a family, not an institution. This is why the assemblies of Christ were in homes only and not purpose build institutional temples. Anyway, in all cases, institutionalized Christianity would have been against the law until the 4th century.

Home fellowships are about the unity of one body, the family of God, and the importance of individual members determining the health of each body. Members are defined by gifts granted by the Spirit. To the degree that each member is exercising those gifts determines the health of the body.

“Church” aptly called and coroneted by Constantine in the 4th century is about collectivism, franchised salvation issued on the installment plan, authority, caste, and infrastructure. Church builds buildings and not people because infrastructure speaks of authority. Come now, let’s be honest; the success of a church is judged by people numbers and infrastructure. Once I went to a Neo-Calvinist how-to pastor’s conference hosted by “successful” pastors. One pastor took us on a tour of his church. Did he wait till Sunday morning so he could introduce to us several members who have grown in their gifts? Nope, he took us there after dinner to give us a tour of their splendid building. Nuff said.

This also results in a dichotomy between church and home. Many people who go to church every time the doors are open wouldn’t tolerate the church building looking like their house. At home, the Spirit is powerless to help us be good housekeepers, but alas, it makes sense that He does so in the temple where He dwells. That goes for behavior as well.

Why are people guarded at church and so unguarded in their homes? Certainly, Susan and I hear this complaint from wives and husbands continually: “He/she is a totally different person at church.” First, church is where you go every week to get more salvation; so, obviously you can’t go to the salvation gas station and behave badly. If you do, you will be denied the “Means of Grace” (means of salvation) which is why you go there in the first place.

Full stop. That’s just the reality of black and white Protestant orthodoxy as articulated by Luther and Calvin. Protest if you will before I read for you from the Book of Concord and the Calvin Institutes. Please don’t waste your time; denying the salvation gas station is a denial that’s going nowhere. You behave differently at church because that’s where you go to get your salvation gas tank refilled lest your salvation car runs out of gas before you reach heaven. And don’t make the gas station attendants mad lest they refuse to refill your tank.

In fact, the Reformed research institute that began to bring Protestantism back to its original roots in 1970 stated the following in their theological journal which was the most widely published theological journal at that time worldwide:

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From the beginning of civilization, progressive salvation obtained through institutions has been the norm and always will be; the two are inseparable. Those who assemble in homes show clearly that their trust is in Christ and in His word only, not an institution overseen by men full of control-lust. When you go to a place where men believe they have authority over your salvation, that is a temple of arrogance despite any humble pretense; this is inescapable. Those who assemble in homes apart from an institution also testify to the fact that their salvation is finished and they can aggressively love without fear of condemnation.

Furthermore, you may argue that your church is confused enough about its roots to not believe in progressive salvation, but with the institutional church returning to its roots at breakneck speed via the New Calvinist movement, it’s only a matter of time before your church is functioning according to authentic Protestantism.

And of course there are many other reasons temple-dwellers behave badly outside of church, but this is the root cause.



4 Responses

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  1. Norma Jackson, Canada said, on August 31, 2016 at 8:32 AM

    Dear sisters and brothers: just when is this Calvinist cancer going to stop? It reeks of spiritual death and I can only stand aghast at its sight. Death! Cruel! Lies!


    • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on August 31, 2016 at 11:08 AM

      It will stop when we stop giving them money and begin meeting where we belong; in homes because we are a family, not memebers of an institution with a dominion agenda.


      • Jaye Lewis said, on August 31, 2016 at 3:11 PM

        You’re both hitting the nail on its head. Having endured almost 15 years in a Reformed “Church”/Calvinist elitist club to the West, I finally saw the true light the day I left. As a woman, I’d been treated like the proverbial dog and was controlled to the point of insanity. Man was God, literally, from Calvin to the husbands, no matter the hypocrisy, the Pharisaic farce, the constant and aggressive indoctrination of something that was so absolutely fabricated. However, behind the scenes, the true personalities of these control freaks played out. Abuse in all forms, etc. I might have been wrong, but I was left with no choice but to file for divorce, and since that day my life has been free—free as a person and truly free as a born-again person with no man-made guilt and a life-robbing fake piousness strangling me. My eyes miraculously opened the day I threw Calvinism where it belongs: in the trash. Ever since, I have been pleading to, and praying for my loved ones who are still in that anti-biblical stranglehold of the enemy. Thank the Lord that their numbers are shrinking every year!
        Dominion indeed, and a very strange one.


  2. Matt said, on March 21, 2018 at 10:00 AM

    “Such a life is only possible where the gospel of justification is continually heard and where God’s verdict of acquittal is like those mercies which Jeremiah declared were new every morning — “great is Thy faithfulness” (Lam 3:22-23).”

    From a young age kids are taught to be on “their best behavior” in church and to esteem certain days above others. The church becomes a sacred space, and the pastor is given more respect than other people. By the time children become adults they have been conditioned to believe the pastor knows better than they do, and without a church they believe they are lost. The pastor has the keys to the kingdom. How can we take communion without a church building and a pastor/priest? How will we be fed?

    Too many times I have witnessed pastors give a lesson on how to be saved and then without transition preach how kingdom living equates to church membership, small groups, and service. You are either in or out. Yes, salvation is found and kept by the church. On the days you can’t make it to church be sure to preach the gospel to yourself and remind yourself that you are totally depraved.

    Institutions are viewed as the church. If you are not in one you are not considered part of the body. Hebrews 10:24-25 is interpreted as a command for church membership. This goes hand in hand with filling up the gas tank and leads to Calvinism’s sneaky twin, Lordship Salvation.


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