Paul's Passing Thoughts


Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on October 23, 2015

Love Theif 1

Hey Bristol, It’s Not About the Law—It’s About Love

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on June 26, 2015

Bristol_PalinThe present 20-40-something generation indoctrinated by the Protestant institutional church keeps on doin’ its thing. Yes, this is the “sinners saved by grace” generation. These are sinners that love on their own terms.

What brought all this up? My present midlife blogger crisis. In 2009 when I started blogging, a Protestant scandal only came along once a year or something like that. What made that blog worthy is that Protestants are supposed to be one-up on the Catholics as far as righteousness goes. Everybody knows Catholics do anything they want to and then go to confession afterwards. Protestants have always been deemed as above such religious wantonness.

Now blogging has become like children who get chocolate too often. It’s no longer a treat; it’s a common occurrence, and the chocolate just doesn’t melt in one’s mouth like it used to. I have watched trending Protestant scandals increase to bi-monthly, monthly, weekly, and now approaching daily. Yawn, we sit at the dinner table and ask the complaining rhetorical question to momma blogger: “Chocolate again?”

It’s hard medicine, but the only thing to blog about now is the why? The what has run its course. However, what most of us do not realize is that there is a new and exciting trail to blaze in our present day: the art of godly living. But first, we must examine why that is possible in the face of this impossible dream.

It’s possible because Protestant tradition has always made Christian living all about our original salvation. Jesus died on the cross to save us from this horrible world that can be fun at times; Jesus will get us through it, so eat and drink for tomorrow we die. After all, we are all just sinners saved by grace. So, eat, drink, and be merry, and when you get caught, or a bad choice actually yields cause and effect, merely pull out your Woe is me a lowly sinner membership card. Jesus is president of the club.

So what’s the why? The why is because Protestantism with all of its pulpit pounding about justification by faith alone is really about keeping people under the law. We remain under law, and keep it when the opportunity matches our desires or when it is convenient, but all in all, it’s impossible to keep the law perfectly so Jesus came to live on earth to fulfill it for us. When we keep the law, we didn’t do it, Jesus did it “through us.” When we get caught, or a bad a choice yields bad fruit, that’s “disappointing,” but thank goodness that’s why Jesus came to LIVE and DIE.

And that is a lie from the pit of hell. Christ came to end the law, not keep it for us. When we believe on Christ, our past sins are forgiven because Christ ended the law that we sinned against, and in regard to the future, there is no law to condemn us. The law of condemnation has been ended.

How? Because Christ died so that you can follow Him in death, and a dead person is no longer under the law of condemnation. Then, Christ was resurrected so that you can follow Him in resurrection as well. More accurately, when you follow Christ in death, the Spirit comes and resurrects you as He did Christ. That’s the new birth. Now you are free from the law in regard to condemnation, for the old you died and is no longer under the jurisdiction of the law’s condemnation. But…your resurrection to new life frees you to love according to the law of love, not condemnation. Same law—different use. Same law, different state of being.

Oops, I almost forgot, the new scandal. “Which one?” This one: Bristol Palin, Sarah Palin’s daughter, is once again pregnant out of wedlock. The family, members of the New Calvinist Wasilla Bible Church, survived the publicity of the first “disappointing” choice, but obviously nothing was learned from the first incident, the blessings of a child being brought into the world notwithstanding.

I am not going to bore you with what she said on her blog about the news; it is the same old Protestant song and dance. In essence, and for all practical purposes: Oops; me, a lowly sinner, once again has sinned. Per the usual, we all fall short of keeping the law perfectly, but praise God for Jesus—it’s not about what we do, but what he has done.  

That misses the whole point. Jesus didn’t come to keep the law for us; He came to end the law, and set us free to love. Like all Protestants, Palin confuses law and love. Here is the huge problem: if Christ kept/keeps the law for us, He also loves for us. Like most Protestants, Palin dichotomizes law and love in Christian living because she remains under the law of condemnation and is not free to follow the law as love.

Hence, as she pontificated on her blog, she can dishonor her family while still loving them. As far as dishonoring her family and bringing shame upon them, Jesus died for that, but of course she still loves her family.

Listen, whenever love is something different than obedience to God’s law, whenever a failure to truly love is not called out for what it is, that means one thing and one thing only: that person is still under the condemnation of the law that Jesus supposedly keeps for us.

Listen “sister,” it’s not about the law, it’s about love. Google the following and find out who said it… “If you love me, keep my commandments.”  One cannot change until the real problem is diagnosed. Palin failed to love God and her family.

Christ did not come to keep the law for us anymore than He came to love for us—we either love or we don’t love. If we truly understand salvation, “We love Him because He first loved us.” That means He loved us first by dying on the cross to end the law so that we are free to love him through obedience apart from being justified by the law. And as much as we love Him, we love others as well.

It’s not about the law—it’s about love. And that is the new frontier for recovering Protestants.



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Under Grace

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on May 30, 2015

Under Grace 7

The Source of Phobias

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on May 21, 2015

PPT HandleI have rubbed shoulders recently with folks who have a phobia thing going on. In one particular case, the person presently employed by a relative of mine would not ordinarily be able to hold down a job.

This is another area where Christians show how confused they are. On the one hand, they get all glassy-eyed and proclaim the simplicity of God’s word, how we should read it as “little children.” But you mark my words: on the other hand, they will proclaim my biblical explanation for phobias here, “Too simplistic.”

The source of ALL fear, according to the Bible, is being under law as opposed to being under grace. I find it hard to believe that if the primary source of fear is gone, that the extreme expressions of it are possible.

According to the Bible, being under law, and specifically its condemnation, is the antithesis of LOVE. Throughout the Bible, fear and love are set in contrast to each other—polar opposites.

To those under law, the Bible is condemnation; to those under grace, the Bible is the discipleship of love. One is a law that continually warns of the wrath to come, the other is instruction regarding love.

This is why Paul said that the sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. Ironically, many denominations keep their followers under law. This is why it is more than possible that professing Christians will suffer from these phobias which is also the case with the aforementioned acquaintance. I also find it curious that said person is of a denomination that emphasizes law. Hence, the person’s known faithful Bible reading will only make the fear worse because of a skewed view of law/gospel.

I am also convinced of this: God’s word states that you are under law regardless of who keeps it; under law is under law. The law must be ENDED for condemnation or you are still under its power. You must be put to death so you are no longer under it, and raised to life so that you may serve the law of love freely. Still being under law with the idea that someone keeps it for you is antithetical to the new birth. You must know that you can no longer be condemned. You are not merely protected from condemnation—condemnation no longer exists.

And therefore, fear can only exist if you allow it for it cannot live without condemnation.


A Disturbing Post by John MacArthur

Posted in Uncategorized by pptmoderator on January 30, 2015

JM Road SignOriginally published March 22, 2014

Confusion over sanctification, thanks to the Reformed camp, continues to reign in Christianity. The few who do get it in the institutional Reformed church are not calling out the perpetrators by name, and I think that is a big mistake. A post by John MacArthur is indicative of the horrible confusion being propagated among God’s people in regard to sanctification.

Per the typical, the grave concern is “Counterfeit Sanctification.”  This concept in and of itself is confusing and unbiblical. The overriding concern among the apostles and Christ was counterfeit justification, not a micromanaging of our motives in sanctification. To this point, in vogue among the Reformed is the idea that Galatians is primarily a sanctification concern. Hence, the tone of Galatians is lent to confusing justification and sanctification. The post by MacArthur reflects the reason that paralyzing fear and confusion are rampant in Christianity. Most Evangelicals in our day are ill prepared to lead others to Christ because they are unclear themselves on the difference between justification and sanctification.

Though much of the post is agreeable (no surprise since error always swims in the lake of truth), MacArthur begins to state confusing concepts in the third paragraph:

But that’s not true spiritual growth—it’s counterfeit. If you truly love the Lord, you can’t be willing to move the goalposts on biblical sanctification.

Then in the next paragraph…

There are many varieties of counterfeit sanctification. Some are easier to spot than others, but all lead to the same kind of spiritual shipwreck. Here are a few to be on the lookout for in your own life.

For sure, sanctification is deep waters, but notice the close correlation MacArthur makes between properly understanding sanctification and the separate issue of justification; viz, “If you truly love the Lord,” and “all lead to the same kind of spiritual shipwreck.” And there are “many varieties” with varying degrees of difficulty in ascertaining. But then MacArthur follows that up with warnings about things that the Bible specifically tells us to practice in sanctification!

Restraint is another possible kind of counterfeit sanctification. People don’t always avoid sin in favor of righteousness—sometimes they’re simply afraid to face the consequences of sin. They don’t necessarily have a heart to obey God or His Word. They’re just afraid of pursuing temptation because of the results.

The Bible instructs Christians to “abstain” (2Thess 4:3) from unrighteousness and even posits the fear of judgment as a motivation (2Thess 4:6). When offering an example of “counterfeit sanctification” that is something the Bible instructs us to do, it would seem that further qualification would be in order to prevent confusion. Nevertheless, MacArthur continues:

That fear could be the sign of a well-trained conscience. Maybe the person was raised in a Christian home and has built-in convictions about right and wrong. Maybe he grew up under the moral standard of God’s Word and can’t shake the nagging of his conscience. Rather than face a troubled conscience or the consequences of his sin, he’ll simply not do it.

But again, the New Testament, in many places, commands us to “keep a clear conscience before God.” The New Testament writers had much to say about utilizing and developing the conscience for purposes of spiritual growth. The Bible even speaks directly to a well-trained conscience being the opposite of spiritual immaturity (Romans 14).

My primary point of contention here is MacArthur’s steroidal hypocrisy. While chiding others for not being biblically clear and concise, he warns Christians against specific biblical imperatives with little qualification.

It’s eerily similar to the whole Reformed motif of sanctification being something that we shouldn’t try at home without the infinite wisdom of Reformed thought. Learn and do is a concept that is grasping at shadows without their deep knowledge of God’s word.