Paul's Passing Thoughts

FYI to Cripplegate and the Clueless Church: My Worship is Well Informed

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on May 15, 2018

ppt-jpeg4My time is very limited right now, and hence, I have little time to write. Accordingly, I had no idea I would be writing a post today, but being offended can result in the rearranging of priorities.

At 62 years old, I suppose I get annoyed as much as anyone, but I rarely get offended, especially by stuff that is church related. Like many other life venues, you learn that church is going to be church, and church is, what it is, and it’s what church does; it condemns, it debates perpetually, it confuses, it covers up, it controls, excels in fear mongering, and epitomizes perpetual trending drama.

However, of late, churchians do something that offends me; they ridicule my worship which is based on years of independent study. In addition, their ridicule is based on ignorance that knows no limits. Moreover, it’s stuff they hear from others and void of any independent thought. Usually, my worship is attacked by those who pay 50 to 80 grand to learn how to think other people’s thoughts. And because they bought their creditability, I’m wrong and they are right. There is something about misinformed ignorance, that is, ignorance that is ignorance and also misinformed to boot that is offensive to me. Think of it as a devil that is wrong about devil stuff. No one respects someone uncommendable when they are wrong about their wrongness because you can’t respect that. Likewise, when Jehovah Witnesses come to my door and I have to inform them of what their doctrine really teaches, I find it disappointing, and if they diss my beliefs, it’s offensive because they don’t even understand their own false gospel.  First they teach a false gospel, and on top of that misunderstand what their own gospel actually teaches. This makes debate very difficult; you have to teach them about what they think they believe to even have a beginning point for the debate. Such is the case with the instigative post that was brought to my attention in a PPT comment.

First, they, and exemplified by said post as well, don’t even know what worship is. They will tell you; “corporate worship” only happens at church. As heard often, Church is where we “enter to worship and leave to serve”…by coming back “every time the doors are open.” They don’t even understand what “service” is either. At the very least, church orthodoxy, as exemplified in the London Baptist Confession and elsewhere, sets aside Sunday as the Sabbath Day from which all service flows from gospel contemplationism. While most churchians concede a vague worship that happens in everyday life, none will concede it valid unless sanctified by church membership and faithfulness to its demands.

The polar opposite is true. All of life is worship, and we gather together to encourage one another to worship in all of life the rest of the week. This is why gathering together for fellowship is VERY important. Actually, the overall laxness towards fellowship among church exiters is annoying. Nevertheless, where does church get this all wrong? Well, first remember that if worship has validity outside of the church, what is the church needed for? If there is any valid worship apart from the church, you can worship without the church, and that’s a huge problem for church.

Secondly, and simply stated, church is the Old Covenant plus Jesus. If you will, works plus Jesus. You deny that Mr. or Mrs. churchian? We have a radio program here at PPT; you are welcome to come on air and prove me wrong. But first, I will have to inform you about what your religion specifically states about justification and sanctification, because you either don’t know, or you are a pastor who does, but can’t talk about the “scandalous gospel” that most Christians are not ready for. Let me first demonstrate that you are a professing Protestant, but don’t know what Protestantism is (see, this is what is so offensive to me; being lectured by people with misinformed dogma…gag). If I ask you if Jesus died for all of your past, present, and future sins, you, as a professing Protestant, are going to say, “yes.” But that’s NOT Protestantism. If I ask you about eternal security, or once saved always saved, you will say, “Yes, that’s a tenet of Protestantism.” Not so. If I ask you if Jesus lived AND died for our salvation, you will say, “yes.” Now on this wise, you are correct, that is the Protestant doctrine of double imputation which is works salvation x 2. However, per the usual, you cannot define any of the Protestant formal doctrines that produce the statements you toss around. Therefore, you are more than welcome to take me up on my offer, but know that your cluelessness regarding what you think you believe will be made public.

Unfortunately,  people will hold tightly to what they have wrongly invested in for a number of years. I understand that, but you shouldn’t lecture someone who was willing to admit they were clueless and started over on the right path.

Churchians don’t know what worship is, or service, and in addition, they don’t even know what church is. Church is not the body of Christ, and it is not the bride of Christ. Per the usual, Protestants struggle to be wrong about something in one particular way; they are usually wrong about something in two or more ways. Keep in mind, the word used for God’s people in the Bible was a generic word for a “called out assembly.” It was used for any gathering of people assembled together for a particular purpose or issue. The church changed the word to, well, “church” in the English translations of the Bible. The word has no Jewish or Greek etymology, and has to do with things that “belong to a lord.” Long story short, the usage of the word is used in English translations to invoke the idea of authoritative temple worship. There is NO rightful translation premise whatsoever for replacing “assembly” with “church.”

The actual, as stated in the article, “New Testament kind of church” met in private homes almost exclusively because that represents the reality of what it is to be a member of God’s kingdom. To suggest real worship can only take place in a, for all practical purposes, temple, is to deny that our bodies are now the temple. Yes indeed, sanctification is defined by using our members to make living sacrifices to God. If you are a born again Christian, worship should be taking place wherever your body is located. To make the church efficacious for valid worship is a blatant denial of the new birth. The claim that formal membership is needed in a local church to validate worship should be our first clue that something is terribly wrong. And by the way, if I ask you (a churchian) to define the new birth, trust me, what you think it is—is not Protestantism. The Protestant Reformation was ignited over the Catholic Church being half right about the new birth which was unacceptable to Protestant Augustinian followers who rejected the new birth in totality. Yes, because of Thomas Aquinas, the Catholic Church became half right about something and that sparked the Protestant Reformation. But, both were on the same page about compelling people to submit to orthodoxy through the slow death of burning, burying, drowning, and cooking. The only good that came out of the world’s intolerance for this one-two punch of tyranny is Americanism. EVERY virtue that can be claimed by Protestantism is out of political necessity resulting from the birth of Americanism. Any person who believes Protestantism and Americanism are rationally consistent is simply confused about a plethora of issues.

I don’t want the present point to be missed; tyranny must be nourished by the belief that the great unwashed masses are totally unable. That’s Communism, Socialism, and church. That’s the tyranny trinity.

Let us now look at said article a little closer. The author, Eric Davis, has a Master’s Degree in thinking other people’s thoughts. These are the thoughts of those, passed down through history, who get a pass for unspeakable atrocities because they were “men of their time.” In some respect that is true because during their time America wasn’t around to restrain their evil. So, he wrote an article for Cripplegate titled, “Gnat-straining, Camel-gorging.” The introduction to the article is based on something else that Protestants (what he called the religious leaders of the time) are wrong about, viz, the Pharisees. Sigh. I have written about this extensively and won’t belabor the point here, but it has to do with something else that Protestants are wrong about, the definition of antinomianism. OUR definition of antinomianism, that is, proponents of justification by new birth, NOT “justification by faith” follows: antinomianism is against using the law for love in sanctification apart from any condemnation. According to justification by faith (really justification by faith ALONE in both justification and sanctification because justification is progressive according to the church gospel), the law is the standard for justification because the new birth is not defined as something that changes the “believer’s” relationship to the law; the so-called believer is still under the law and its “righteous demands” for perfect law-keeping to remain justified. Therefore, we must go to the church to obtain the “means of grace” (read “means of salvation”) so Jesus’ perfect law-keeping will continue to be imputed to our Christian life to keep us saved. Anyone who denies this is an antinomian which is supposedly the denial of law as a standard for justification. The point is in danger of being missed based on its simplicity; if righteousness is based on perfect law-keeping, that’s righteous by the law, and according to the apostle Paul, NO person, not even Christ…especially Christ, is justified by the law. The Protestant definition of the new birth does not change a person’s relationship to the law according to Roman’s 8:2. This isn’t rocket science; this keeps people under the law which is the biblical definition of a lost person. And hence, let’s think about this; does this gospel not circumvent free and aggressive love in sanctification because no one is a perfect law-keeper? Sure it does. The focus is pleasing everything church so that Jesus’ perfect law-keeping will continue to be imputed to our Christian life to keep us saved.

So, it all goes something like this at church: “The Pharisees were really, really, really good at keeping the law, but lo!, they were unable to keep it perfectly.” So, any attempt to keep the law in order to please God is “moralism” or “a righteousness of our own.” This is what the Pharisees were supposedly guilty of. According to church, this is not antinomianism, but “moralism.” Church defines antinomianism as “libertinism” or the rejection of the law altogether for any purpose whatsoever, or the rejection of the law for justification. In reality, the Pharisees were the epitome of antinomianism. They replaced fulfilling the law through love with fulfilling the law through a handful of religious traditions. This is EXACTLY what the church is guilty of. Since perfect law-keeping is the standard and we can’t keep the law perfectly, being faithful to a handful of traditions at church; ie., the “means of grace,” the law is fulfilled by Jesus in our place. Jesus lived for our sanctification and died for our justification because sanctification is really the progression of justification according to church orthodoxy.

Church is Phariseeism par excellent.

This is the way the article frames all of this: the religious leaders of the time majored on the minor and minored on the major, they strained gnats and swallowed camels. They were really good at the particular and finite elements of the law, but they failed to pay attention to what’s supposedly “major.” This is just another variation of the aforementioned. The author then proceeds to explain what the major stuff really is.

1. Tolerating glaring personal ungodliness.

Generally speaking, this was the sin of the Pharisees which solicits Jesus’ word picture. They assumed to live for God as God’s people, yet tolerated blatant personal sin. Biblical godliness is not multiple-choice. It’s not “pick a few commands you like, do those, and don’t worry about the stuff you don’t like.” Doing the Christian life while tolerating glaring areas of ungodliness in our lives is the idea. This is gnat-straining and camel-eating, par excellence.

What is missing here is how churchians are expected to untolerate glaring sins in their life. By changing their behavior? Hardly, that would be “behaviorism” or “moralism.” Now we observe the redefinition of “repentance” according to churchism. All sin is an opportunity to go to church and return to the same gospel that saved us, the present sin being proof that we need to do such, and of course, the only way we can effectively return to the same gospel that originally saved us in order to keep ourselves saved is faithfulness to church. The devil is in the details; he doesn’t say that we untolerate glaring sin through actual change to a lifestyle of love, but rather a…according to the likes of Paul David Tripp, “lifestyle of repentance.” Viz, a “revisiting the gospel afresh” (Dr. Michael Horton) or “preaching the gospel to ourselves every day” (sound familiar?).

2. Nitpicking the way in which someone confronts us.

It sometimes happens like this: we need a little nudge to get out of a spiritual rut in our lives. A brother or sister loves us enough to come alongside of us to give the needed nudge. But, the way that they go about it might be a few points short of perfection. Perhaps they picked a time when we were tired or had a long day. Perhaps there wasn’t much time to talk. The circumstances were not ideal for us. So, instead of humbly embracing the substance of the loving correction, we seek for an escape hatch. We bark about the method of confrontation. We blameshift; pull out the red herring. We accuse them of not coming at the perfect time or perfect way instead of having humble gratitude and receptivity. It’s gnat-straining and camel-gorging.

Ah, and as a former beloved employee used to reply when I asked him where to find something and he saw it, “Dare it go.” You see, one reason we go to church is to be “accountable.” It’s all about fodder for returning to the cross. Going to church is about sin, sin, and more sin wherever we can find it and being defined by anything that falls short of perfect law-keeping. He even states this as a sorry excuse for not humbly accepting the Protestant definition of love: pointing out sin. You can’t love someone by obeying the law’s standard of love, that would be moralism, but you can love someone by pointing out their faults so they can go back to the cross with the proper offering. According to church, good works are never acceptable at the foot of the cross, only a sin offering. Ironically, this is polar opposite of the Bible’s stated purpose for gathering together, to “encourage each other unto to good works” while Protestantism rejects with prejudice any claim that any person can do a good work whether lost or saved. Any denial of this would argue against a mountain of Protestant orthodoxy penned by Martin Luther and John Calvin to name a few.

3. Living like an angel in public, but a devil in private.

This is the guy who puts forth much sweat to get himself or his family to church stuff and is able to cannive [sic] a general opinion of friendliness from others who know him at a distance. But, a peak into his private home life and it’s another thing. He is unrepentantly proud. He can’t be corrected. It’s his way or the highway. He is an angel at church, but a devil at home. He can’t handle if his wife or children or roommates confront his sin. It’s a humility-less atmosphere by his doing. Gnat-straining and camel-gorging.

Dare it go; see #2. This one serves to verify my point.

4. Division over inconsequential matters.

Take the example of a church administrator making minor adjustments in the church life. For example, a small change to the time of a church gathering, building paint, decor, or similar. Then it happens: an individual reacts in an uproar. Emails, not calls, filled with caps and exclamation points. In all the years of church matters; Sunday preaching, discipleship groups, and leadership training, not once did this upset individual respond with such energy to the ordinary means of grace. But, make a change to something to something minor and it’s gnat-straining and camel-guzzling.

Did you catch it? Complaining about the “ordinary means of grace.” Viz, honestly restated, “ordinary means of salvation.” You know, stuff that you go to church for.  Again, Dare it go. Oh, and by the way, let’s not forget about the other end of the spectrum; people who complain about church cover-ups. This isn’t “trusting the judgement of the elders who are close to the situation.” Sooooo, ya know, it only looks like child rape, but who are you to judge because you need to be a shepherded lamb with a big body and little feet which means you can’t even get yourself up if you fall over. But hey, why not? The church gospel is a cover-up for sin to begin with and not an ending of sin. Cover-ups necessarily go hand in glove with a gospel that’s a cover-up to begin with.

5. Hammering unbelievers in our lives for living like unbelievers.

Chances are, most Christians live among non-yet believers. Consider a professing Christian who goes to church and reads their Bible. They can articulate doctrine and recite more books read than most Christians. But, then a neighbor parks a bit on their grass, or the neighbor’s dog makes a mess on their lawn, or the neighbor’s kids pick a few of their flowers. Consequently, the professing Christian complains angrily at their unbelieving neighbor for destroying some grass, and never asks forgiveness. Even worse than some foliage, it’s the relationship that was destroyed. Gnat-straining and camel-guzzling.

Actually, that’s only a sin if the neighbor is one who is first God’s elect, and is also chosen to persevere. And church leaders don’t like members to alienate anyone in their lives because they could be future church members which means more power and more money. However, remember, once they are a member, there is no wrong way in confronting them. Getting hammered is part of the church covenant.

6. Pounding the body of Christ on peripheral, social issues.

Certain socio-cultural issues need addressing from the pulpit. But what can happen is that the local church and pulpit ministry become dominated by socio-cultural issues over and above consecutive, surrendered expository preaching. To discuss and apply socio-cultural issues at times is good. But, when they dominate the time and resources of New Testament ministry, there’s a chance we have veered from the disciple-making mission. Since socio-cultural causes are not the central mission of the local church, we risk gnat-straining and camel-gorging when we disdain other believers who do not devote attention and resources to such issues in the way that we do.

At this point, I could address the church’s neo-Protestant anti-Americanism for aforementioned reasons, but that’s another post.

7. Prioritizing the “Christian life” to the neglect of enthusiastic New Testament body life.

Imagine a professing Christian who reads their Bible and prays every day at home. They have people over often, listen to a lot of Christian radio, and read the Bible to their kids. But there is something crucial missing. It’s them four and no more. They refuse to humbly plug in to a New Testament kind of a church. In doing so, they refuse to transparently commit to Jesus’ Bride. Consequently, they fail to be involved in the body of Christ, despite the prioritizing of Christian things. Gnat-straining and camel-gulping.

This one is what primarily incited this post. This is just wrong backward and forward, upside down and downside up. I have already addressed this point at the beginning of this post, but will elaborate on a few more points. The church is not the bride of Christ; new Jerusalem is the bride of Christ and we are the “guests of the bride groom.” What a laugher that some belonging to church predicated on Augustinian hyper allegory will argue, “How can a city be someone’s bride?” Really? And for all the reasons stated previously, the body of Christ is not church. Listen Bubba, just because I won’t sign a legal contract with a lot of control freaks doesn’t mean I am hiding my sin. But please note, he mentioned prayer; so, also conclude that any prayer outside the church expressing regret for failing to love does not count because it is not church-authenticated. It’s almost like a belief in church absolution, because that’s exactly what it is based on documented church orthodoxy. Yes, deny it if you will, but black and white church orthodoxy points to a granted authority to forgive sins via the church elders. Think about that one for awhile; people who believe they have authority to forgive sins on earth are telling us church membership is synonymous with being part of Christ’s body. Believe them at your own peril.

8. Lots of external and social emphasis, but little heart substance.

This is the idea of an externally and socially-focused Christian living. Some professing Christians live in a state of near perpetual angst at everything external and social issue. Perhaps we often find ourselves in heated debates about cultural, political, and social issues; shaking the fist of our hearts at people. Imagine if we were only angry about social issues, but neglected to take time to sit before God. What does it say about us if we spend more time posting fist-shaking political rhetoric on social media than quietly sitting before God to confess sin of our own heart? He never gets transparent with other believers in their church. Instead, he sort of exists in angst at everything besides his own sinful angst. Gnat-straining and camel-gobbling.

Again, note the obsession with sin, and the primary purpose of church: to be confronted by every other member, the elders, the sermon, yourself during the “Lord’s Table,” by the music, etc., etc., etc. And for sure, the more humble you are the easier it is to control you. What about a contrary emphasis of love? According to church, that’s “behaviorism.”

9. Little love, lots of scurrying.

This is an easy one to fall into. It’s the individual who likes spreadsheets, bullet points, and flowcharts. They love creating dragon-like to-do lists, and valiantly slaying them. They attend church functions regularly and are disciplined. However, while they slay their to-do list, they’re also slaying friendships. They lack love for people. Kindness has been sacrificed in the name of productivity. Gnat-straining and camel-swallowing.

Says the church that demands you be there “every time the doors are open.” As a former churchian/family man/primary breadwinner, I can tell you every time in a week there was any free time for our family we were packing up the kids and heading for church.

10. Much external Christian activity, little prioritizing of corporate worship.

This is the individual who involves themselves in a whirlwind of activities. They love being known as the active, well-rounded family. There is no way they are going to be known as the weird religious family who doesn’t do anything fun. It’s a tornadic existence of sports, club teams, related travelling, PTA, volunteering, altruistic causes, and without ceasing. The end of one whirlwind season means the beginning of another. In the meantime, they find themselves just not able to prioritize corporate worship. It’s a funny thing. They would never plan to miss church. It’s just that they always plan something else. God’s main thing gets crowded out for their main thing. Add to that, dad often finds himself grumbling that worship gatherings always occur at inconvenient times. Gnat-straining and camel-gorging.

Again, notice that worship, though not stated here specifically but strongly implied, only takes place at church. And, having fun isn’t worship. I beg to differ. And also note that it is ok to be a whirlwind at church, especially a financial whirlwind, but not outside of the church. If you flip the dichotomy between the so-called secular and church realm illustrated, it’s an example of gnat-straining and camel-swallowing in and of itself.

11. Neglecting to prioritize use of our spiritual gifts while prioritizing every other aspect of the Christian life.

This individual knows that each Christian has a composite of Spirit-given gifts. They’re convinced. But, the many serving opportunities in the church never work out for them. It’s never the right time. It’s never the right place or temperature or weather for me. Times conflict. We’re tired. Mundane local church life gets boring. I don’t get recognized enough. I lose motivation. People don’t praise me. In the meantime, I valiantly carve out huge chunks of time for the things I want. Gnat-swallowing and camel-gulping.

You could think of more examples. Too often, I have found myself straining gnats while simultaneously cramming camels down my gullet. Thankfully, God did not leave sinners like me to myself. Motivated by his own glory, he gave his most valuable possession—his own Son. Jesus stepped out of heaven, became a man, lived the only impeccable life, then went to the cross to endure the righteous wrath of God for gnat-straining, camel-gorging people like me. He rose from the grave, that all who surrender in faith to him are saved.

Right, like the church emphasizes individual gifts. When did that start happening? What is clearly emphasized? Showing up and supporting church leaders/infrastructure. Why would there be anything else when the crux of orthodoxy is considered? The primary purpose of church temple worship is to revisit the same gospel that saved us in order to receive absolution for present ongoing sin. It is the marketing of ongoing salvation and yes, inevitably, it becomes boring. Church besmirches the idea that justification is a finished work in our lives resulting in a living progression of sanctification. If we do not leave the “elementary principles” spoken of in Hebrews and move on in sanctification, and all of Christian life is based on the elementary, the substitutes bemoaned in this article should be expected.

But, we now come to the payday of the article in the second paragraph of #11. You see, as in every other issue, the solution must be, the gawsssful (the G strongly emphasized). This paragraph is chock-full of the church’s false gospel of progressive justification. “Sinner(s)” is the specific biblical nomenclature for being unregenerate. That’s because church denies the new birth. Again, if we are literally born again into the kingdom of God and one of His literal children indwelt by the Spirit who will “lead you in all truth,” what do we need the religious experts for? Of course we are still sinners with an unfinished salvation lest there be no need for them as well. Ironically, if the church would stop selling salvation and start selling discipleship instead, it would probably be bigger than ever. The fear follows: sanctification as a primary motivation won’t bring in enough money. They think fear is a bigger sale than happiness.

Next we have the primary tool for control: the total inability and total worthlessness of mankind. Man is not worth loving; so, God’s motivation was His “own glory.” This, in blatant contradiction of what the Bible clearly states: God was motivated by His love for mankind which would imply some sort of worth, but the more people are worth, especially in their own minds, the harder they are to control. As discussed earlier concerning the false doctrine of double imputation, Christ lived an “impeccable life” of perfect law-keeping AND died for all of our ongoing sins like gnat-straining and camel-swallowing. In essence, He supposedly lived a perfect law-keeping life so that law-keeping can be imputed to our present lives in order to keep us saved every time we return to the cross with our ongoing sins revealed by our own morbid introspection, fellow sin-sniffers at church, and of course, the “gawdly men” who have authority over us by proxy.  And finally, this ongoing surrendering which can only be done at church, keeps us saved. The ambiguity of his tenses in that sentence, as always, is deliberate.

A favorite cliché among church tyrants is, “It’s the Galatian problem again.” In reality, they are the Galatian problem to a “T.” The false teachers at Galatia were propagating a Jesus plus the law gospel which fulfilled love through a handful of traditions: circumcision, diets, and the recognition of days. In the exact same way, church propagates Jesus plus the law with love being fulfilled through the “means of grace” which is Church membership, the Lord’s Table, sitting under “gospel preaching,” tithing, etc.., etc.

I don’t mind being lectured too much by Catholics and Muslims because most understand what they really believe, but I find particularly offensive to be lectured by those who don’t even understand the tenets of their own religion. This makes Protestantism the most pathetic among all of the false religions.

So take a hike, my worship and faith are well informed. Invest your time in the clueless who have handed their consciences over to you, but will answer for it alone when they stand in the judgement.

paul    

 

 

 

 

One Response

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  1. John said, on May 15, 2018 at 5:56 PM

    Good heavens, how demonic is that thing called Calvinism? How well-formed by Satan himself is the Reformed traditions of man? How is it able that any thinking human being is able to stand the absolute drivel that Davis has spoken; does Davis–the controller-in-chief at his local branch of Evil-R-Us realize he has made a fool of himself?

    Cripplegate, Pulpit and Pen, and the pompous Entreating Favor are all the same; the whole darn lot of those pathetic, anti-biblical, false gospels jokes are the same. I am beginning to believe the following: “Whatever happens in Vegas, or at your local strip club, stays at your church; and don’t worry, we’ll still be here next Sunday.” (So live it up and then pay up.)

    That lot, Davis included, have not yet experienced the New Birth (he admits it himself: “Thankfully, God did not leave sinners like me to myself.”) Huh, what?

    What does light have to do with darkness? Nothing, except expose the evil. And, yes, Paul, may I echo your sentiments: “So take a hike, my worship and faith are well informed. Invest your time in the clueless who have handed their consciences over to you, but will answer for it alone when they stand in the judgement.”

    Satan has to be giggling in his Calvin dress somewhere…

    Like


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