Paul's Passing Thoughts

Dear Christian, You “Really Are” Unleavened

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on March 4, 2015

If you are really a Christian, you are unleavened. In the Bible, leaven is used to demonstrate an influence; sometimes the illustration regards evil and other times some sort of other influence. In 1Corithians 5:6-8, the influence spoken of is evil.

Even though Paul had written to the Corinthians before and emphasized the importance of not fellowshipping with those who lead unruly lives, apparently the message didn’t compute.

1Corinthians 5:6 – Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? 7 Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. 8 Let us therefore celebrate the festival, not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

The point I want to make here in addition to the myriad of texts in the Bible that state Christians are righteous, not merely declared righteous, this text states that we “really are” unleavened. Paul often made statements like this to deliberately emphasize the fact that Christians are righteous beings, not simply labeled as such. In writing to the Romans and telling them of their goodness, he stated “you yourselves” are full of goodness.

Paul used the Passover feast, which included the Feast of Unleavened Bread to make his point.

In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month between the two evenings is the LORD’s Passover. And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the feast of unleavened bread unto the LORD; seven days ye shall eat unleavened bread. In the first day ye shall have a holy convocation; ye shall do no manner of servile work. And ye shall bring an offering made by fire unto the LORD seven days; in the seventh day is a holy convocation; ye shall do no manner of servile work (Leviticus 23:5-8 KVJ).

In this particular letter to the Corinthians, the Feast of Unleavened Bread is likened to Christian fellowship at least and probably sanctification in general. Both are to be done with “sincerity and truth.” Notice also that Passover was to be a day of rest indicating that the Lamb’s justifying work is complete, but our celebration of the feast looks forward to a rest at the end. The in-between, viz, sanctification, is NOT a rest. In fact, here is how the Passover meal was to be eaten:

Exodus 12:11 – In this manner you shall eat it: with your belt fastened, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand. And you shall eat it in haste. It is the LORD’s Passover.

Lastly, the sanctification feast is to be maximized with purity. Obviously, if we are still leavened, Paul’s warning that “a little leaven leavens the whole lump” makes no sense at all. Why would we care about a little leaven if we are not an unleavened lump? Jesus issued the same warning in Matthew 5:19; those who relax the least of all commandments will be called least in the kingdom of heaven.

Sanctification is not a rest. Sanctification does not take a relaxed attitude towards sin. We are to continually separate our unleavened selves from the leaven of the world. We are NOT the leavened saved by grace.

paul

“Secular” Is NOT Synonymous with “Evil”

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on August 27, 2014

Gnosticism does not interpret reality in three dimensions. That’s why it is of the Dualism family of philosophy. EVERYTHING is good or evil, material or invisible. This is the “knowledge of good and evil.” ALL of reality is interpreted and defined by one or the other. This also involves Anti-Type epistemology as well: opposites define each other; we would not know light if not for darkness, and evil gives deeper understanding of good and vice versa.

This was the basic hypothesis of the Calvin Institutes (see 1.1.1.) and Protestantism in particular. Martin Luther interpreted ALL reality via the “glory story” and the “cross story.” The story of man and the story of redemption. Luther believed that man cannot reason or know reality, and God sent Christ to marry the invisible to the visible as the only gateway of wellbeing—the only gateway of understanding between the shadow world and the true forms through suffering. This IS the Redemptive Historical Hermeneutic so highly touted in Reformed circles. It is behind comments by the likes of John MacArthur Jr. that people doubt their salvation because they have not suffered enough as a Christian.

This worldview has seriously crippled Christianity’s ability to minister to the world because, among many examples, the secular is always defined as being evil. America was founded on secular principles: separation of church and state. The founding fathers saw the secular as a force for good that freed man to pursue life and happiness. This was the first time in history where faith and force were separated.

Other words that are unfortunate Christian synonyms for evil… “flesh,” and “leaven.” The latter often denotes influence whether good or evil; the former, like the secular, can be used for good or evil. The framers recognized that church and secular together,  never turns out well. This is why movements such as the Moral Majority are egregiously misguided.

Here is an example of God using the secular for good purposes, and His call to Christians to support such:

Romans 13:1 – Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, 4 for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience. 6 For because of this you also pay taxes, for the authorities are ministers of God, attending to this very thing. 7 Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed.

paul

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