Paul's Passing Thoughts

The Protestant Denial of the New Birth

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on April 1, 2016

Reformation orthodoxy denied a literal new birth in accordance with Martin Luther’s “Alien Righteousness.” A common theme throughout the Bible is miraculous birth and the Holy Spirit’s role in salvation. From the beginning of Bible history, God emphasizes a birth made possible only by Him. “The Promise” of new birth is for those who believe and want to be a part of God’s literal family forever.

The Reformers clearly rejected the new birth as a foundation for their orthodoxy which has resulted in confusion amidst Protestants of all stripes. Even those who profess a literal new birth function as if there isn’t one. Martin Luther’s  Simul Justus et Peccator is indicative of the Protestant gospel of paradox. The “believer’s” righteousness is only a position, NOT a reality.

Paul and Susan

 

JOIN THE DISCUSSION! Call in towards the latter part of the program: 347-855-8317. 

Live Broadcast link for Friday 3/25/2016 @ 7pm: 

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/falsereformation/2016/04/01/christian-living-series-program-13

Relevant Discussion:

http://www.ligonier.org/blog/simul-justus-et-peccator/   and chapter 4 of “The Truth About New Calvinism” TANC Publishing 2011.

Other related links for discussion tonight:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_mortalism

https://www.monergism.com/thethreshold/sdg/calvin_psychopannychia.html

Listen to the broadcast on your cell phone: (347) 855-8317

Live video of broadcast from the Potter’s House: 

https://livestream.com/accounts/17669550/events/5103718

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Workless Slaves?

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on February 17, 2016

Depression: My Testimony

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on January 14, 2016

Paul and SusanPart 2 on depression, and program 4 of our sanctification series. Paul will share his own testimony regarding depression as an unbeliever and believer. The testimony segment of the live program is posted below. Call in and comment or ask a question. Here is the live link for tonight’s program: Thursday night, January 14 @ 7pm

My story starts with fear of something that I was terrified of that was out of my control. It is a testimony of choosing death unto death. I was tricked into choosing a major death decision among many other death decisions. It starts with the importance of properly defining words. This is so very ironic that my story starts as an unbeliever 43 years ago with a major theme of this ministry today: the utter importance of properly defining words. Those who define words define reality and how you live in it; let me strongly suggest that you let God define the words that define life. We are talking about the historical grammatical interpretation of reality. Words mean things that determine life and death. No mass grave has ever been filled without the issue of realty present. No adult person laying in a mass grave is guiltless of letting others define reality and the meaning of words for them. It is also a pity that children die with them. If for no other reason, think for yourself because of our children.

This is the beginning of my testimony, and it starts with fear. As a rebellious teen, I chose my life and death carefully. I didn’t want too much death, just enough to have fun and fulfill my lustful desires without ending up dead. Of course, I didn’t have enough information to frame it that way at the time, but that’s how I functioned. Those who want to control you care little about what you understand, how you function is what they are after. That’s why you must define words for yourself. Never let anyone tell you what a word means—you must understand it in your own mind.

So, as far as taking LSD, that was too much death for me. I made sure I stayed with Death Lite. Therefore, I took a drug called “Window Pane” that was a lesser hallucinogen than LSD. I didn’t want to see monsters and stuff like that; too much death. I just wanted to see fluid running through the veins of leaves and wall paint dancing. But herein is the huge problem: Window Pane is LSD—they just changed the name. I chose a death that I would not have ordinarily chosen; I let others define the word for me, and the result was a death that I didn’t see coming.

I had an absolutely horrible “bad trip.” I was riding in a car tripping with friends and was in a trance for an undetermined amount of time. I came out of the trance upon some kind of physiological trauma experienced with vomiting colors out of my mouth. As I yelled while lurching forward, clouds of colors came out of my mouth. I suspect my heart momentarily stopped or something of the sort. My friends were delighted and wanted to know, “What did you see?! What did you see?!”

After that, I went into some sort of anxiety frenzy that had me walking and walking the same day well into the night until the trip ended. I think maybe I knew that I nearly died. Well, my drug days were over at that point and I stuck with safer death like alcohol and marijuana. Then things get even more ironic. I wasn’t aware that LSD use could lead to flashbacks. Someone handed me one of those Jack Chick-like cartoon tracks with the various and sundry narratives (chick.com). This particular one was a story of a girl who used LSD, became a Christian, and later died from an LSD flashback. I wasn’t aware that one could have LSD flashbacks. Funny, the track didn’t have its intended impact, I didn’t think, “Oh, I will become a Christian just in case I have a flashback and die.” No, I focused on the fact that I could possibly re-experience that fateful day without any warning. Of course, like most religious stupidity, the track exaggerated the flashback experience by stating that one could die as a result of a LSD flashback which is highly improbable, but I was focused on the fear of having that horrible experience again. This began my long journey of a life dictated by fear.

Why didn’t I then go to an expert to see if flashbacks could be prevented some how, or at least dealt with some way in case I had one? The answer to this is simple: experts are adults, and I didn’t want to reveal that I had taken LSD. My fear escalated into anxiety attacks and hyper-ventilation which also feel like near death experiences. Add more fear. I ended up being taken to a doctor by my grandmother who diagnosed me with an “anxiety disorder,” which “runs in the family.” Listen, in the vast majority of adolescent severe anxiety problems complete with panic attacks, this is reality: it’s caused from death choices they have made. In this kingdom, anxiety is epidemic because of death choices—period. And you know what, we just might get into the death/life sanctification paradigm in this depression segment of our Christian living series. Sooner or later we are going to do it in this series, and we just might do it in this depression segment of the series.

The doctor prescribed anxiety medication, but I wouldn’t take it because the former bad trip experience was so horrific that I was afraid of any kind of medication. Also, because one of the pranks practiced by my friends was slipping drugs into other people’s drinks, I wouldn’t drink from any container that had escaped my monitoring for any length of time. This is an example of how particular fears can lead to all kinds of paranoid behavior deemed quirky by others: “The guy takes his beverage to the bathroom with him; gee, that’s strange.”

Next I want to talk about my first panic attack. I was riding around with some new friends that had not yet initiated me into their click with their favorite prank. There was a paved road that terminated into a gravel road, but at the point of termination, the gravel road elevated sharply. Driving towards it at night, it looked like you were headed straight into a concrete wall. Of course, they made sure I was riding in the front seat for the event. Well, the joke ended up being on them as I went into severe hyper-ventilation and ended up being taken to the hospital. See how the underlying fear of other things led to this? In addition, panic attacks are also very terrifying, so that was one more thing added to my life that I was afraid of. Add more fear. See how all of this leads to a downward spiral of paralyzing fear? Not only that, I was conditioning myself to react in fearful ways. In other words, we can habituate ourselves with fear to the point where fear becomes a way of life.

So where do we go next with this? As a young man, I continued to make death decisions. Between circa 1976 and 1982, I led a very promiscuous lifestyle. Then came the news that aids had been around since 1969, and could lay dormant for ten years! Nobody knew that during the disco 70’s when one-night “hook ups” where all the rage. Ooops. Again, due to bad information, I thought I was only choosing Death Lite. In my mind, it was likely that I had contracted it when the statistics were considered. Add more fear. See how this works? There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that my lifestyle, decisions, and compounding fear coupled with a guilty conscience to boot led up to my major depression. The anxiety came first, and the experts tell us that anxiety always walks side by side with depression. I could go on and on about how decision after decision led to more and more fear in my life.

However, when I got saved, it was a pretty dramatic transformation. And I will be honest with you, I think if someone could have sat down with me and explained what I know now about justification today, I don’t think fear would have ever crept back into my life. My salvation experience was so dramatic and accompanied by so much joy that I doubt I gave much thought to sin early on. But I began to become very troubled about remaining sin in my life.

I was totally dedicated to the idea that the Bible had all answers to life’s questions, I just couldn’t find the answers. I was really, really serious about being a Christian; that’s why I joined a Southern Baptist church and attended a Southern Baptist seminary. But then orthodoxy happened. There is no doubt in my mind that my conversion was genuine, but I joined up with a religion that keeps one under law; so, in regard to how I eventually began to function, I was no whit better off than my miserable former life. In fact, I might have been worse off.

Certainly, my Christian life had far less “big sin” than before I was a believer, but Protestantism calls for the “believer” to remain under the fear of condemnation—that’s just Protestant orthodoxy plain and simple. It has now become plain to me that fear of condemnation is what led me into depression as a believer. Also, condemnation is what empowers sin. To the degree that there is doubt that you are not under condemnation, the sin within can use that to provoke you to sin; the Bible is VERY clear on this. Then, condemning sin committed just gives more fodder for further condemnation; it’s just another downward spiral of fear and condemnation. Let’s note 1Corinthians 15:56-58 on this:

56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God,who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

This passage is soooo major. First, what in the world does “the power of sin is the law” mean? This is the condemnation of the law—this is being under law. In Paul’s letter to the Romans, he explains how the sin within uses the law (if it condemns) to provoke us to sin.

Romans7:7 –  What then shall we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet if it had not been for the law, I would not have known sin. For I would not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.” 8 But sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness. For apart from the law, sin lies dead. 9 I was once alive apart from the law, but when the commandment came, sin came alive and I died. 10 The very commandment that promised life proved to be death to me. 11 For sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment,deceived me and through it killed me. 12 So the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.

13 Did that which is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, producing death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure.

I don’t rightly understand the ins and outs of how this works, but the Bible is clear that the possibility of eternal condemnation empowers sin. Somehow, sin uses the possibility of eternal condemnation to create desires that tempt us to sin. This is why Christ came to end the law (Rom 10:4). And this is why men fear death; the judgment that follows. Hence, “The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.” This is what is so important about a proper understanding of the new birth. The old us that was born under law and its condemnation literally dies with Christ, and we are now free to serve another master, not the Sin master:

Romans 7:4 – Likewise, my brothers, you also have died to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to him who has been raised from the dead, in order that we may bear fruit for God. 5 For while we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death. 6 But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way of the written code.

This is the “Therefore” in 1Corinthians 15:58; we are now totally free to aggressively love God and others without fear of condemnation. And…

1John 4:18 – There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected [or matured] in love.

Fear of condemnation provokes one to sin, leading to sin, and more and more condemnation and fear. Yet, Protestant orthodoxy calls for saints to remain under law and fear of its condemnation. The Protestant formula follows: Christ continues to cover our sin if we live by faith alone in the same gospel that saved us. Sin is not ended, it is only covered. And, don’t miss this…if we are not still under condemnation, well, what do we need Christ for? This very question is posed rhetorically as if you are an idiot if you think we are not still under condemnation. Well, if you no longer “need the gospel,” you have tossed Christ aside and moved on to “something else other than the gospel.” Come now, be honest, we hear this constantly among Churchians.

Hence, we can expect that depression is just as prevalent in the institutional church as it is in the world. We can also expect more sin in the church because of double temptation. The world is only tempted to sin by the law of conscience, Churchians are tempted by both. Moreover, the prescription according to Protestant orthodoxy for condemnation is a “return to the same grace that saved you.” The likes of Jerry Bridges call for a re-contemplation of the gospel rather than a change of behavior to deal with the condemnation that shouldn’t be their in the first place. What will this effect? It will bring about a “searing of the conscience with a hot iron.” True, Christians shouldn’t be under the condemnation of the law to begin with, and true, if you change behavior while under the law, that is works righteousness, or merely lesser wages for death, but this approach is a further regression from the truth and makes Christians just as indifferent to the law as unbelievers—they are not free to love the law and to use it for love—they are still enslaved to its condemnation. LOOK! This is NOT rocket science, this is EXACTLY why the church looks like what it does.

Consider the mentality that I had as a depressed Christian. Sure, I was a huge proponent of obedience, but I had a very uneasy relationship with it. Why? I never knew for certain that my obedience wasn’t for purposes of self-justification because of my Protestant single perspective on the law and sin. And in essence how can you? You can’t. Therefore, there is always going to be some level of condemnation in your life provoking sin and leading to more and more condemnation. And going to church adds to that, no? Sure it does; week after week you go there and hear about how terrible you are, and if you are under law—that’s probably true!

Listen to what I said to the elders who interviewed me because I joined a new church in the midst of my depression: “God is the last person I want to see right now.” What’s that? Right, that’s clearly fear of condemnation! When I began counseling with the pastor of that church, consider what I came to him with in regard to how I was dealing with the problem: “I read my Bible (contemplationism) for two hours today and prayed for three hours!” Note that while I deemed myself a proponent of obedience, in reality I was a functioning Christian mystic. When the pastor started instructing me to think differently and do things differently, I expressed my concern as to whether or not “obedience is curative.” He focused on teaching me to cling to the promises of God, and to obey, but we were both confused about obedience being love and not lesser condemnation. Sure, if you cling to the promises of God, and keep a clear conscience before Him, you are going to eventually come out of the depression, and that’s what happened to me eventually, but that’s just putting a Band-Aid on the symptoms. The real problem is condemnation with fear following. A person can reap the benefits of a clear conscience while still functioning as someone who is under some degree of condemnation, but with a proper understanding of justification, there is NOW…NO condemnation for those who are in Christ (Romans 8:1).

No condemnation leads to less and less sin and more and more love. Love “covers a multitude of sin” and “fulfills the whole law.”

Protestant orthodoxy calls for the “Christian” to remain under condemnation of the law and its fear of condemnation. Martin Luther believed that all works performed by Christians need to be “attended with fear” [of condemnation]. John Calvin stated the same in no uncertain terms. In Protestantism, the catalyst for sanctification is fear of condemnation and a continued need for the same gospel that saved you. That is a root source of depression. The present-day biblical counseling movement produces mental illness through its own churchianity, and then cures it by teaching people to sear their consciences with a hot iron. Protestantism produces mental illness, and then presents itself as the cure.

Next week, we will examine concrete actions that one needs to take in order to have complete victory over major depression.

The Calvinist’s Greatest Fear: The Spiritual Peasantry Will Understand Law and Grace

Posted in Uncategorized by pptmoderator on January 11, 2016

PPT HandleOriginally published January 2, 2013

“The two are completely separate; the law is left behind in the former and loved in the latter.” 

Susan and I perceive constantly that most Christians don’t understand the difference between justification and sanctification. Said another way, they don’t understand the difference between law and grace. This is by design. Instead of outlawing the Bible like the Popes, the Reformers merely posited the Bible as a catechism that aped their orthodoxy derived from counsels and creeds. I won’t mention names, but prominent evangelical leaders have shared with me personally that they know the general populous of American Christians are theologically illiterate. And again, this is by design. And, most Christians in our day openly admit it, and in some cases are proud of it. The remainder admits they believe that the pastorate is an intermediary between them and what God wants us to understand.

There are a number of problems with this, but primarily, God thinks it’s a bad idea. The Bible is clearly written to Christians in general. And His word cannot be properly understood unless it is read in the context of justification/sanctification. Whatever your opinion of the American church, it is a product of parishioner illiteracy in regard to doctrine; that is certain and indisputable.

Though it takes a lot of study to see some things in simple form, the simple fact of Calvinism (and we are all Calvinists if we are Protestant) is that it makes “under” a verb and not what it is: a preposition. They could get away with this in medieval times because most people didn’t know the difference. In our day, we know the difference, but assume the pastorate has a set of metaphysical eyes given to them by God before the foundation of the world that we don’t have—so our eyes don’t even blink when their interpretations contradict the plain sense of Scripture.

As we have seen in our previous observations from the book of Romans, Christians are UNDER grace and were previously UNDER law. All people born into the world are born into it UNDER the law, and will be judged by it at the end of their lives if they don’t escape it. Christ was the only man ever born under the law that could live by it without sin and was therefore the only man ever born who could die for our sins. We escape the condemnation of the law by believing in what He did to make a way of escape for us. Calling on Christ to save us acknowledges that we all fall short of God’s glory and are therefore in danger of eternal separation from Him.

We are “under” grace, NOT “under” law:

Romans 6:14—For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.

The word for “under” here is hupo which is a primary preposition. Calvinism teaches that we are still under the law. This is the main reason that it is a false gospel. Now, they would vehemently deny this in the following way with red faces and veins popping out of their necks:

NONSENSE! We emphatically state constantly that no man is justified by the law unless he can keep it perfectly and we all know that no man can keep the law perfectly. We constantly cite James 2:10 which states that if we break the law at one point—we are guilty of breaking the whole law. HOW DARE YOU SLANDER US IN THIS WAY!!!

This argues the point by making “under” a verb (something we do or don’t do) rather than a position. Therefore, they are not arguing jurisdiction, they are arguing practice in regard to how we are justified. Position is the issue, not what we do; i.e., keeping the law or not keeping the law, or doing this/that in this way or the other way etc. Calvinists believe our position stays the same; therefore, what we do becomes critical. In fact, what we don’t do keeps us saved; e.g., “You don’t keep the law by keeping the law.”

There are four versions of “Christians” still being “under” the law, or under its jurisdiction. First, antinomianism which teaches that we are still under the law, but God cancelled our obligation to keep it because it promotes grace. Secondly, that we are still under the law, but the Holy Spirit helps us keep it so that we will pass the final judgment. Thirdly, that we are still under the law, but if we perform certain rituals within the church, by authority of the church, our sins are continually forgiven (perpetual pardon in the face of the law). Fourthly, we are still under the law, but Jesus keeps it for us while we continually contemplate His saving works in the Scriptures. This is the Reformed view. And of course—it’s no less a false gospel than the former three.

This is verified by their interpretation of Galatians 2:20—this exposes their heresy:

I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

We supposedly remain spiritually dead, which as they know is clearly synonymous with being under the law in Scripture. So, Galatians 2:20 is interpreted as being applicable to our Christian life. We don’t live in our Christian life, we are still spiritually dead, but the living Christ within us keeps the law for us so that the “ground of our justification will be Christ in the final judgment.” Calvinists believe that we are not under the law in regard to the idea that we don’t keep it in our Christian life to be justified, Christ keeps it for us. Hence, “under” is a verb issue rather than a position issue. What we do becomes critical, not where we are positionally. Therefore, Calvinism makes our Christian life (sanctification) by faith alone as a way to maintain our just standing for the final judgment. Only problem is, we are still fulfilling a requirement of the law in cooperation with Christ—this is the problem of salvation being a verb issue rather than a preposition issue. If the law no longer has jurisdiction over us FOR JUSTIFICATION, who keeps it or doesn’t keep it is irrelevant FOR JUSTIFICATION.

Then what is Paul talking about in Galatians 2:20? He is talking about justification; not sanctification, this should be evident. Consider the context:

Galatians 2:16—yet we know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will be justified.

Galatians 2:17—But if, in our endeavor to be justified in Christ, we too were found to be sinners, is Christ then a servant of sin? Certainly not!

Galatians 3:11—Now it is evident that no one is justified before God by the law, for “The righteous shall live by faith.”

Consider verse 21 which immediately follows 2:20:

I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose.

Why do Calvinists apply Galatians 2:20 to sanctification? Because what we do is the issue, not our position, so Christ must obey the law for us. To the contrary, we are justified because the old self that lived in the flesh died with Christ. And when it did, we also died to the law. So, in regard to justification, we can only be justified if the life we lived in the flesh is dead and no longer under the law. Being alive in the flesh equals: being under the law. Now, obviously, our mortal bodies are still alive in one sense in that we are walking around, but in reality the old self is dead and the power of sin and the law are broken. In that sense, we are dead, and justified via the fact that Christ was resurrected for our justification (Romans 4:25). Notice that Paul states that he is dead in regard to his life “in the flesh.” This doesn’t mean that we are also spiritually dead in sanctification. The context of Galatians 2:20 is justification. Hopefully, Romans 6:5-14 will clarify this for you:

5 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6 We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. 7 For one who has died has been set free from sin. 8 Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. 10 For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God. 11 So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.

12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions. 13 Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness. 14 For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.

As we have noted before in our Romans study, being under the law comes part and parcel with being lost and under the power of sin which is provoked by the law. The flesh under the law is like throwing gasoline on a fire (Romans 7:8-11). But notice in Romans 6:5-14 that there is both death and life. This passage in Romans also adds “death” to being under the law and the bondage of sin. Galatians 2:20 only speaks of our death to the law and sin (“Apart from the law, sin lies dead”), not the life we have in sanctification. Romans 5-14 speaks to both because the context includes both sanctification and justification:

13 Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness. 14 For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.

We have been brought from death to life. The life we live in the flesh has had the power and dominion of sin under the law broken because we died with Christ. We are dead and Christ lives for our justification:

Romans 4:23—But the words “it was counted to him” were not written for his sake alone, 24 but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, 25 who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.

In regard to justification and this life we live in the flesh, we are dead, and more importantly, also dead to the law as well, and only Christ is alive, but that doesn’t pertain to sanctification as well. In sanctification, we are alive, and UNDER GRACE. In justification, the old self is dead and no longer under the law. Calvinists believe we remain under the law in sanctification, and being under the law is synonymous with still being spiritually dead. Therefore, we remain dead in sanctification and under the judgment of the law, so the law must be fulfilled for us.

Being under grace is synonymous with being born again, new creatures, informed by the law, not under it (see Galatians 2:19), and lovers of the truth. Obedience to the law is now our means of loving the Lord and showing the world that we love Him. The law is the full counsel of God in regard to family harmony and kingdom living. It informs us on how to be separate from the world. In a word: sanctification. The law in regard to judging our justification has NO jurisdiction over us. We are no longer under it.

The very fact that Calvinists propagate a total depravity of the saints in which bondage to sin is not broken clearly illustrates that the law is still a standard for our justification; we are still under its jurisdiction for our just standing. A cursory perusal of Reformed writings can produce a motherload of citations to establish this fact, but one from Reformed icon G. C. Berkouwer should suffice:

Bavinck too, wrote in connection with the regenerating work of the Spirit: “The regenerate man is no whit different in substance from what He was before his regeneration” (Faith and Sanctification p. 87).

Clearly, this can only mean one thing: the one that is “no whit different” must also remain under the law. His position hasn’t changed, so lest one attempt to be justified by the law, what is done in sanctification becomes paramount in eternal issues as opposed to it being a Divine family matter. The Reformed camp uses the book of Galatians to argue for this when the book actually addresses their specific error. They use the book of Galatians, as mentioned, particularly 2:20, to argue a supposed Pauline position that the Galatians were doing things in their sanctification that was affecting the status of their just standing. Again, the Reformed crowd makes what we do in sanctification the issue, not our position which biblically proposes that nothing done in sanctification can affect justification. The Reformed use of Galatians to argue this propagates a fusion of justification and sanctification which makes the law the standard for justification from salvation to glorification.

However, the book of Galatians is the antithesis of such as it shows a clear dichotomy between justification/sanctification and the application of the law in each. In justification: NO application. In sanctification: obedience. In regard to no law in justification, but the law informing our sanctification, consider Galatians 2:19:

For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God.

We have also noted in our Romans study:

But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it—

We are justified apart from the law, but we would not know anything about these issues if not informed by the “Law and the prophets.” Furthermore, after belaboring the point about their being no law in justification, in both Romans and Galatians Paul makes his point by asking “What saith the Scriptures?” (Romans 4:3 and Galatians 4:30). And the absolute classic point on this is Galatians 4:21:

Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not listen to the law?

There is no law in justification, but the law informs our obedience in Sanctification. Scriptural examples are myriad, but consider Galatians 5:2-7:

2 Look: I, Paul, say to you that if you accept circumcision, Christ will be of no advantage to you. 3 I testify again to every man who accepts circumcision that he is obligated to keep the whole law. 4 You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace. 5 For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. 6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love.

7 You were running well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth?

Verses 2 through 6 are about justification by faith alone apart from the law. Verse 7 concerns sanctification—running and obeying which we are free to do aggressively without fear of it affecting our justification. The two are completely separate; the law is left behind in the former and loved in the latter. I once heard a Reformed pastor fuming from the pulpit over a statement that he heard at a conference: “He said that the law leads us to Christ, and then Christ leads us back to Moses. THAT’S BLASPHEME!!!”

No it isn’t. When the law was increased through Moses, it had a dual purpose: to increase sin in order to show those under the law their need for salvation, and as can be ascertained by many other texts, for the saved to better glorify God:

Romans 5:20—The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more,

Galatians 3:19—Why then the law? It was because of transgressions….

paul

Six Characteristics of the Protestant Anti-Gospel

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on January 22, 2015
  1. Progressive Justification. The Protestant Reformation turned every aspect of the true gospel completely upside down. “Justification by faith” is really justification by faith alone in sanctification (the Christian life). What they call “sanctification” is the progression of justification to a final justification.
  2. Dualism. It deems the flesh (body/members) as inherently evil and something that cannot be indwelled by holiness. The contemporary expression of that is the centrality of the objective gospel outside of us. This is based on Martin Luther’s alien righteousness. Therefore, the new birth must be denied along with any personal holiness associated with it. All righteousness must remain completely outside of the believer.
  3. Law as Justification’s Standard. The Reformers made law the standard for justification (see the Calvin Institutes 3.14.9-11). Therefore, the law has a single dimension and can only judge/condemn. This keeps “Christians” under law (instead of under grace) which is the very definition of a lost person. In contrast, law and justification are mutually exclusive.
  4. Redefinition of the New Birth. The Reformers made the new birth a change of realm rather than a literal transformation of the person. The “believer” is given the ability to “see” the kingdom, but not participate in its good works.
  5. Lovelessness. The ability of the Christian to love is circumvented because the law is only a standard for justification and must be kept perfectly to obtain any merit. The Christian is not free to use the law to love without fear of condemnation because the law can’t be kept perfectly by mortals. Hence, any loving act by a Christian cannot have merit.
  6. Two Seeds Instead of One. Since law is the standard for justification according to the Reformers, if fulfilled, it is a second seed that can give life (Gal 3:16). So, the promise was not only to Abraham and his offspring, but also to the law.

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