Paul's Passing Thoughts

Ecumenicalism: It’s Driving Force

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

12033009_10206340069372406_1838322145154560615_nOne of the most perplexing things observed by people who function on objective truth is ecumenicalism. Now, remember, TANC Ministries deems itself as a research organization that stands on some basic objective fundamentals that should get the ball rolling, but it will take the collective effort of God’s family to significantly mine the wisdom of God’s word. Protestantism is really just another Dark Age.

One of those basic fundamentals follows: every action is driven by core logic. People do things for a reason. Always ask, “why?”

My church life was a collection of perplexing experiences. One was ecumenicalism. If what church A believes is efficacious to eternal life, but church B has it wrong, why would church A do anything to validate church B? As a former Baptist, the National Day of Prayer drove me nuts in that regard, but it was just one perplexing event among a litany.

Elder AuthorityLet me suggest what might be driving ecumenicalism; what I call the gospel of humbleness. What is it? It’s this whole idea that you show yourself approved of God via a willingness to “submit to godly authority” and thereby showing yourself, “humble.” Ah yes, you have “given up your so-called right to be right.” You see, it has nothing to do with your love for the truth because you are totally depraved and can’t really love truth; your real motive, supposedly, is to prove yourself right. In other words, and we hear it constantly, “you are arrogant.”

Being interpreted: you think you actually know something other than, “Christ and Him crucified.”

By the way, this is the exact same verbiage that was socially vogue during the rise of Nazism in the 30s and 40s. The whole “knowledge puffs up but faith is a matter of the heart” motif. Folks, come now, let’s be honest, we hear this constantly in Christian venues.

I would also suggest that it is predicated on an additional idea that truth can’t really be known, and society’s only hope is to be led by those who know we can’t know. And by the way, since they are so special, they should get lots of goodies from the labor of those “enslaved to the material world.” Since they work so hard to save the totally depraved zombie sheep from themselves, the zombie sheep should be more than happy to buy them lots of respite goodies. Stop and think for a moment in regard to your overall church experience over the years; does any of this sound familiar?

Also notice that the followers of various church leaders can only stand and watch while their hard-earned money is used for these guys to get together and stroke each other’s egos. Despite all of the moaning, groaning, and whining, these guys are going to get together and be puffy which is the cardinal sin for everyone but them.

In the end, if these knowers can only get on the same page, ah, “unity” will usher in utopia. What the “believers” believe is completely irrelevant—they are only required to humbly submit to a “godly authority.”

Herein is the word “believe” redefined as belief in man’s authority, not THE truth.

paul

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10 Responses

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  1. John said, on October 3, 2016 at 9:54 AM

    This article somehow reminds me of the so-called “essentials” and “non-essentials,” and of the agenda behind it. Yes, it’s from Calvinists/Reformed people I hear it the most…the minute you DARE put their false belief system under the Bible’s perfect spotlight, then this “non-essential” argument rears its ugly face; you know, as though we are brothers and sisters regardless of HOW we are saved, regardless of how opposite our beliefs are, and even though the characters of both Gods are diametrically opposed. Just throw in “non-essentials” and the world is well.

    Anyway, people are sheep: Look at fashion (if I’m going to see one more woman wearing torn jeans; one more person who goes on a date and takes out his cellphone before he even says hello to his date; one more person who reads and follows the sex “advice” as found in Cosmo, Women’s Health, Marie Claire; one more person who runs after the latest Internet “thing”, etc., I am going to be pretentious and scream in Latin and Greek and Hebrew).

    And so it is in the church; we have forgotten (and in some cases are forbidden) to think for ourselves. We are allowing those who are clueless (and godless) to do our thinking for us. We could not be more wrong if we tried. And all the while, these elitist thinkers of our day are pushing their sick little, anti-biblical agenda, and we are (were, thank goodness) just too happy to fund them. God’s given us brains and intellect: let’s use it.

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    • Paul M. Dohse Sr. said, on October 3, 2016 at 10:07 AM

      Good point. And that argument came specifically from Augustine who is the father of Catholicism and Protestantism both, according to both, not me.

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      • John said, on October 3, 2016 at 10:43 AM

        And that unscriptural saying is a hit with Presbyterians especially but not exclusively, as it is an easy debate cop-out; a way to avoid discussing many theological difficulties, and to prepare the ground for ecumenicalism. “Hey, we both believe that abortion is wrong, so let’s just get along…” and then a few minutes later, “Now that we agree, dear friend, come closer and let me tell you about a wonderful man called Calvin……”
        Hell, no!

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  2. Christian said, on October 3, 2016 at 10:05 AM

    This pretty much sums up how I am feeling toward the SBC and now my local SBC church. We are not reformed but reformed authors are studied on Wednesday nights and yesterday the Bible Project was being pushed from the pulpit as being a good for your children. I listened to one of your broadcast last night on the Gospel Project and am going to listen more intently. It is hard for me to grasp fully but thank you for your time and efforts. We southern baptists are so naive and trusting of our leadership. We need to be more like the Berean’s . Also yesterday our pastor announced he would be giving out a book by Thom Rainer to each family while he preaches the precepts found in it. I forget the title but I know he is reformed. I will let you know the title. Thank you so much for your time and efforts.

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  3. Christian said, on October 3, 2016 at 10:35 AM

    The book by Thom Rainer is “I Am A Church Member”. Has anyone read it?

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    • John said, on October 3, 2016 at 11:31 AM

      Regarding Rainer and his book; well, I would not read it if you paid me.

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      • Christian said, on October 3, 2016 at 11:48 AM

        Yes I know about the Gospel Project. For some reason the link was removed but I would like to read it. But this is called the Bible Project, totally different, although also produced by the reformed I believe. I think it is fairly new, they haven’t finished the entire Bible yet. Thank you.

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      • John said, on October 3, 2016 at 12:57 PM

        Christian, yes, “The Bible Project” seems very fishy and has been pushed by the The Gospel Coalition’s Justin Taylor, a leader in the modern Reformed movement. Sad to say, that alone is reason enough to avoid it at all costs.

        The little book (75 pages), “I Am a Church Member” is a bit of a fear-mongering effort and full of pledges such as to support the pastor “no matter what.” Wow, that sounds like controlling and weird, not so? “No matter what?”

        The book is divided/broken down into the following six pledges that MUST be signed, etc.:

        I Will Be a Functioning Member
        I Will Be a Unifying Church Member
        I Will Not Let My Church Be About My Preferences and Desires
        I Will Pray for My Church Leaders
        I Will Lead My Family to Be Healthy Church Members
        I Will Treasure Church Membership as a Gift

        One reviewer of the book has said the following: “So what is the problem with Thom Rainer’s book? “I Am a Church Member” uses guilt and fear to get new church members to do what the church leadership wants.”

        Here’s a review of it:
        https://redeeminggod.com/i-am-a-church-member-thom-rainer/

        Christian, the book belongs in the trash. It’s about control, and no single self-thinking Christian needs this from the institutionalized church, Calvinist/Reformed/or Evangelical Baptist included.

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  4. Andy Young, PPT contributing editor said, on October 3, 2016 at 10:40 AM

    The “non-essentials” issues are nothing more than a smoke-screen. They are the symptom of the real problem. Really what is happening, when different churches are arguing over “non-essentials”, it is really an argument over the “means of grace”. The style of service, musical taste, casual vs formal dress, should women wear hats, should men not have beards, are christians allowed to drink, smoke, chew, go to movies, etc? Or even “non-essential” doctrinal matters. In the reformed construct, these issues are all “works” issues that would indicate someone is trying to live by “works” works instead of “faith alone” works. Indeed, under this construct, “non-essentials” are non-essential to keeping the justification process going, because it doesn’t keep your focus on your sin, the cross, and the gospel. It is an attempt to be justified by works instead of faith. This is what reformed elders mean when they say “it’s all about the gospel”

    I never understood before how the elders could not have a problem with issues that had to do with one’s sanctification. But now that I understand that their justification construct is progressive, it makes complete sense and why they are so quick to label you a “legalist”.

    What I find remarkable, is that if you have the right understanding of justification, and a right view of sanctification, these “non-essential” issues take care of themselves. You don’t argue about any of those things listed above because now it becomes a matter of liberty and maturity, as each person is convinced in his own mind, just like the example in Corinthians about eating meat offered to idols. Each person is motivated out his own expression of love to God and others to determine the extent to which he will arrange his life around these matters.

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  5. John said, on October 3, 2016 at 11:19 AM

    Yes, Andy, that’s the way I’ve also seen it (it has nothing to do with the colors of the carpet or modest dress). Calling it a “smokescreen” is accurate.

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