Paul's Passing Thoughts

The Truth about TULIP and the 5 Solas

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on January 4, 2014

TULIP and the 5Solas are the Reformed bumper stickers that solidify the Reformed gospel as a given truth. They are the, “Give me liberty or give me death,” and “Remember the Alamo” of Americanism. The major difference in this analogy is the fine print. Patriotic bumper stickers are pretty straight forward; Reformed bumper stickers have a lot of fine print. In fact, with TULIP and the 5Solas, the devil is literally in the details.

T: Total Depravity. The assumption is that this only pertains to mankind in general and not the family of God. No, it is also the total depravity of the saints.

U: Unconditional Election. This isn’t an election for salvation. The elect qualify for a race of faith alone; viz, Augustine’s Sabbath Rest doctrine. If one lives by faith alone as a Christian, the reward is salvation. This is the already and not yet Reformed bumper sticker.

L: Limited Atonement. Only in regard to those chosen to enter the race of faith, not everyone “elected.”

I: Irresistible Grace. Also known as the effectual calling. This only pertains to being called into the race of faith. According to Calvin, only the ones gifted with perseverance finish the race of faith alone. So, there is the non-elect, the elect, and those who persevere (CI 3.24.6).

P: Perseverance of the Saints. Not the idea that the chosen will persevere as a result of election, but the chosen must finish the race by faith alone in order to receive the prize of salvation. The race of faith is not for rewards as workmen for the kingdom—the reward is salvation.

I: Scripture Alone. As a narrative that only shows Christians their total depravity in a deeper and deeper way so that they can continually return to the same gospel that saved them.

II: Faith Alone. For both justification and sanctification.

III: Grace Alone. For both justification and sanctification. Justification is progressive; i.e., sanctification by justification.

IV. Christ Alone. Literally. All of reality is interpreted through Christ and His works in the gospel. EVERYTHING else is a shadow of Christocentric reality, including the other two members of the Trinity.

V. Glory to God Alone. Literally. EVERYTHING else recognized as having worth steals from the glory of God. Luther/Augustine/Calvin interpreted reality as everything being categorized as the glory story (man) or the cross story (Christocentric reality).

paul

An Open Letter to the Board of Trustees of Southern Seminary

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on January 2, 2014

TANC LOGO

Paul M. Dohse

TTANC L.L.C.

PO Box 583

Xenia, Ohio 45385

To Dr. Walter Price and the Board of Trustees of Southern Seminary:

Gentlemen,

It is no surprise that truth is of low value in our day; the apostle Paul informed Timothy that in the latter days people would not tolerate sound doctrine, and we are in those days. Hence, there are no expectations in regard to this letter, but nevertheless, it is a duty to proclaim the truth.

Southern Seminary now offers academic credits for attending seminars at conferences sponsored by various organizations connected with the present-day resurgence of authentic Calvinism. Though the traditions of men and antinomianism was of primary concern as stated by Christ during His earthly ministry, the evangelical academia of our day follows the crowds in wholesale acceptance of any doctrinal name brand that sells.

This blitzkrieg of resurgent conferences targets youth specifically. The resurgence seeks to turn a whole generation of youth to this doctrine. This represents the future of the American church. Evangelicals, and its academia in particular, seem indifferent to the gravity of future accountability attached to this reality.

Our organization researches the Calvin Institutes, and the trustees of Southern Seminary would do well in following our example rather than the opinions of men like Albert Mohler. Calvin’s gospel, as stated in the Institutes, is a call to keep ourselves saved through the practice of antinomianism, and has a distinctive Gnostic application. It is works salvation by Christ plus antinomianism, and reduces obedience to only experiencing the imputation of Christ’s perfect obedience to the Christian life. An example of this would be on page 215 in How People Change (2006), a book written by Paul David Tripp, a speaker at the recent Cross Conference endorsed by Southern Seminary. He states the following:

When we think, desire, speak, or act in a right way, it isn’t time to pat ourselves on the back or cross it off our To Do List. Each time we do what is right, we are experiencing what Christ has supplied for us. In Chapter 11, we introduced some of the fruit Christ produces. We will expand the discussion here.

Calvin, as well as Luther, believed that all reality is interpreted through the works of Christ in the gospel, or the “objective” gospel and the imputation of those works are experienced “subjectively” in order to remove our works from sanctification. Hence, “the subjective power of an objective gospel” and other such mantras often heard among evangelicals today. This necessitates, in a manner of speaking, interpreting every verse in the Bible as a justification verse; i.e., “Biblical Theology,” a buzz word at Southern. This way of interpreting the Bible was introduced by Christian mystic Geerhardus Vos circa 1938.

Calvin also redefined the new birth as an experience of perpetual rebirth in order to keep ourselves saved by the same gospel that originally saved us. So, the new birth is not a one-time event, it is a perpetual cycle of the same repentance and new birth experience that originally saved us—that’s why we must, “preach the gospel to ourselves every day.” This is the doctrine of mortification and vivification. It is part of Calvin’s systematic theology. This is factually indisputable. The Christian life focuses on our total depravity and repentance only, leading to the experience of vivification, or a joyful experience.

Therein, the human “heart” is redefined as something that is transformed only by its increased ability to experience vivification. This is why John Piper states that joy is essential to the Christian life; if vivification is not being experienced; perpetual rebirth is not taking place:

The pursuit of joy in God is not optional. It is not an ‘extra’ that a person might grow into after he comes to faith. Until your heart has hit upon this pursuit, your ‘faith’ cannot please God. It is not saving faith (Desiring God: p. 69).

Likewise, Southern Baptist Paul Washer states the following:

This cycle simply repeats itself throughout the Christian life. As the years pass, the Christian sees more of God and more of self, resulting in a greater and deeper brokenness. Yet, all the while, the Christian’s joy grows in equal measure because he is privy to greater and greater revelations of the love, grace, and mercy of God in the person and work of Christ. Not only this, but a greater interchange occurs in that the Christian learns to rest less and less in his own performance and more and more in the perfect work of Christ. Thus, his joy is not only increased, but it also becomes more consistent and stable (Paul Washer: The Gospel Call and True Conversion; Part 1, Chapter 1, heading – The Essential Characteristics Of Genuine Repentance, subheading – Continuing and Deepening Work of Repentance).

The new birth is redefined as a “cycle” rather than a one-time event like our physical birth. It is redefined as a perpetual rebirth experience as we focus on our saintly total depravity. We are only righteous positionally; regeneration is a mere experience of Christ’s perfect obedience to the law. This not only keeps Christians under law, but inadvertently calls for a rejoicing in our own supposed total depravity.

This is why authentic Calvinism dies a social death within Christianity every 100 years or so. God’s people eventually catch on to the fact that it is a false gospel. Lighter forms of it survive the rejection while maintaining the label. We are presently within the fifth resurgence since Calvin’s Geneva, and the trustees of Southern are mindless participants accordingly.

We had the wonderful privilege of meeting many, many young people at the recent Cross Conference where you promoted this false gospel. We realize that there will only be a remnant that loves the truth enough to reject this latest academic novelty. But this is a generation of young people capable of great things, and smart enough to know that they only need God Himself to accomplish His mission. We believe that American Christianity has become a mission field in and of itself; namely, YOUR resurgence movement, a movement that bears your name, and we are seeking to reach that remnant of God that loves His truth. This is our duty and calling. A gospel promoting a justification that is not finished cannot save.

Meanwhile, as stated by the apostle Paul, let those who teach another gospel be accursed whether they be angels or men of renown.

Because only truth saves and sanctifies,

Paul M. Dohse

John 17:17

Matthew 4:4

Louisville and the 7 Questions Continued

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on December 29, 2013

Louisville and the Seven Questions

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on December 29, 2013

Why SBC Infighting Will Never End

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on February 14, 2013

ppt-jpeg4I have been a Southern Baptist since 1983, and I certainly don’t remember any significant tension between Calvinists and Arminians in the association until recently. That’s because most Calvinists in the SBC have been Reformed Light for the most part. Circa 1981 began a concerted effort to take over the SBC with the rediscovered Reformed authentic gospel. That’s Luther’s centrality of the objective gospel outside of us. Until maybe ten years ago, few Calvinists in the SBC held to that soteriology. They are now known as “aggressive Calvinists” in the SBC.

Right, because the authentic gospel of the Protestant Reformation comes part and parcel with spiritual tyranny and indifference to human suffering. So, do I think it’s a good thing that SBC notables are pushing back against the “aggressive” Calvinists? No, not really. One camp is dying a painless death akin to gangrene, and the leaders of the other camp make you feel the pain. At least in the latter, you know something is going on that needs attention. Then you hope you can figure out the cure.

Fact is, both camps are Protestants, and Protestantism is founded on weak sanctification. And when you have weak sanctification, there will always be infighting. The Reformers had a different doctrine than Rome, but it was predicated on the same philosophy: spiritual caste. It’s an ancient philosophy that believes in the enlightened few ruling over the unenlightened masses. Rome was terrified that the unenlightened masses would get their hands on God’s word. They thought that was like handing a four-year-old a loaded musket or a really sharp knife. The Reformers had the same attitude even though they partook in the printing of Bibles. But one, it is unclear as to whether mass production was intended, and two, it is clear that the Reformers believed that the ignorant masses needed a dumbed down explanation of truth called orthodoxy. Hence, Calvin started the study Bible thing that is all the rage in our culture. Don’t forget, Luther and Calvin both believed that saints remain totally depraved.  And don’t forget that two Catholics helped start the Reformation and were revered by Luther and Calvin till the end.

The Reformation was really a fight among philosopher kings for the mutton. And this fight between SBC academics is no different. T4G/TGC verses the John 3:16 crowd is all the same song and dance: philosopher kings fighting for the mutton. How do we know? I will tell you.

Jerry Vines, et al are not stupid; they know that this authentic Calvinism taking over the SBC is progressive justification which is clearly an in-your-face false gospel. So why not tell it like it is? Why not express outrage that the president of Southern Seminary propagates a false gospel? The answer to that is fairly simple: they don’t believe that the average Southern Baptist is able to understand what progressive justification is. And sadly, they are probably right, but no thanks to them. Look, I’m a pastor, and I can tell you that the American pastorate is saturated with the idea that the average parishioner cannot understand doctrine. Therefore, at best, Southern Baptists will live by biblical generalities and whatever the philosopher kings think they might be able to understand.  The doctrinal illiteracy of the American church knows no bounds and that is by design; it reflects the spiritual caste mentality that has dominated the pastorate in Western culture for centuries.

Therefore, New Calvinists can’t be called on their false gospel; the other philosopher kings have to rally the spiritual peasantry around issues like the sinners prayer. While the SBC’s flagship Seminary is overseen by a heretic, thank goodness that resolution passed by an “overwhelming majority.”

paul

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