Paul's Passing Thoughts

A.W. Tozer – Passive/Aggressive Man Of God

Posted in Uncategorized by Andy Young, PPT contributing editor on June 18, 2018

The Bible does not have a single perspective on sin. Protestantism defines sin as a transgression of the law, maintains that definition throughout scripture, and applies that definition to believers as well.   When considering the meaning of a word, proponents of Systematic Theology will often look to the earliest usage of a word in scripture as the root definition. This is interesting considering that the first time “sin” is used in the Bible it is described as an entity that seeks to wield control over another (Genesis 4:7) and not a transgression of the law.

Sin seeks to control others through condemnation. This desire for control by Sin manifests itself with man himself seeking control over others in turn. You can be sure that if someone is wielding an accusation against you – if they are trying to condemn you for something – they are trying to control you.

What passes for the Protestant gospel these days is nothing more that an insidious desire to control through condemnation. Yet the Protestant gospel also keeps believers enslaved to the law as well under a false pretense. Sometimes such a notion is thinly veiled, as seen in the following Facebook meme:

Is it just me or does anyone else see the implicit condemnation in this meme? The message should be clear; Jesus loves you despite the fact that you are a filthy rotten sinner. In reminding us about Jesus’ love for us, the author takes a subtle jab at reminding us of our presumed “depravity”. This is nothing more than a passive/aggressive guilt trip. It is an attempt to guilt people into accepting the gospel (read “coerce”). Notice that the sentiment is ambiguous enough so as to be applicable to Christians as well as the unregenerate. It ought to be just one more piece of evidence that reveals the real Protestant doctrine regarding justification; that salvation is an ongoing process that must be maintained by continuous “faith alone” in Jesus’ work to obey the law in our stead and cover us with His imputed righteousness.

In contrast, the Gospel of the Kingdom is not a gospel of condemnation. It is a gospel of Life! Jesus never used condemnation as a means of coercing people to accept the gospel. In fact, Jesus Himself said that it was not His purpose to bring condemnation.

For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.” ~ John 3:17-19

“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.” ~ John 5:24

“When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, ‘Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?’ She said, ‘No man, Lord.’ And Jesus said unto her, ‘Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.’” ~ John 8:10-11

Because believers are now the born again offspring of the Father and are no longer under law, there is therefore now no condemnation! (Romans 8:1) It is not only erroneous to remind believers of their so-called “depravity” but it is outright evil because it is an attempt to control. Notice that according to this meme, as you think about your sin you should be reminded of how much Jesus loves you and what a great price was paid for your sinfulness. It is the cross chart all over again. This meme makes a pretense of Jesus’ love while driving us to focus on sin either wittingly or unwittingly. When sin becomes the focus the only result is fear of condemnation.

As believers, our focus ought to be on love, and love IS the fulfillment of the law. The reality that we are no longer under condemnation is incredibly freeing. We do not have to worry if we “mess up” in the weakness of our flesh because the law cannot judge us. It allows us to serve others by aggressively pursuing love. Furthermore, it informs our gospel message. We do not need to guilt people into accepting it. They are already aware of their guilt one way or another. Our gospel must be one that provides a solution to guilt. The Gospel of the Kingdom is one that provides man a way out from under the law and does not continue to condemn him by it. And that is not only refreshing, it is full of hope!

~ Andy

Protestantism – Redefining Reality By Reinterpreting Scripture

Posted in Uncategorized by Andy Young, PPT contributing editor on July 7, 2017

Protestantism is more than just a false gospel. It is a redefinition of reality itself. When God created the world He used words to describe it. Words are the product of a rational mind. Since Man is made in the image of God, he also has a rational mind. Man uses the power of language to define his reality and communicate that reality to other individuals. Therefore, if one desires to create a new reality, the most effective way to get another to accept that reality is through the use of words, the redefinition of words, or in some cases the omission of words.

The meme at left is a perfect example of this because it fits the Protestant metaphysical assumption of reality. The verse is well known. Many of us were probably taught this verse in Sunday School as children. But if you look closely, something is amiss with this verse as it appears in the ESV, favorite bible of Reformed theology. Here it is in the King James, the way most of us learned it:

“We love Him, because He first loved us.” ~ 1 John 4:19

The ESV subtly leaves out the word “Him”. The question is, does one little word really make that big of a difference? Before we explore that answer, consider how the verse appears in the original manuscripts. Here is an excerpt from my interlinear Bible program which shows the Greek from the textus receptus manuscript.

It is clear from the Greek that the word “Him” appears in the manuscript and is the direct object in the first clause in this verse. God is the object of our love. Notice how the omission of the word “Him” in the ESV completely changes the meaning of the verse! There is no longer an object of our love. Instead the context of the verse is now about our ability or capacity to love in general.

So the question remains, does one little word really make that much difference in the grand scheme of things? Does it really matter that the ESV left out the object of our love: our Heavenly Father?

To answer this question we must first answer another more important question: Why? Why would Protestantism seek to marginalize the love a believer has for his Father? The answer is simple: Man’s depravity. The metaphysical assumption of Protestantism is that man is depraved and unable to love God. And since the false gospel of Protestantism is based on perfect law-keeping, this keeps believers “under law”, which means according to Protestantism, believers are no different than the unsaved. In other words, believers are just as totally depraved and unable to love God as unbelievers are.

If you think that is farfetched, then please explain to me why a word, which is clearly the manuscripts, was left out for no good reason whatsoever? Would it not seem contradictory, on the one hand, to have a philosophy rooted in the depravity of man and his inability to love God and, on the other hand, have a Bible that definitively states that man indeed loves God?

When this meme from Our Daily Bread showed up in my Facebook newsfeed the other day, the post used this verse in the context of forgiveness and loving others. But understand this, the metaphysical reality of Protestantism makes it impossible to love others because of Man’s depravity. The point according to such orthodoxy is this: unbelievers cannot really love because they don’t have Jesus. But here’s the rub. Believers can’t really love either. Any act of love they do is only experienced subjectively as Jesus does the loving for them.

Thus the omission of the word “Him”. Forget trying to love God. The assumption is that the only reason we love at all is because God had to first love us, and only those whom God sovereignly elected to salvation can show love as they subjectively experience love through them by Jesus Christ.

In fact, even Protestantism’s erroneous perspective on Law circumvents love. Believers are not only unable to love, they don’t even have any means to show love. Keeping the law is the way we show love to God and others. But the Protestant gospel says that we are to live by “faith alone”, trusting Jesus to keep the law for us. So if we aren’t supposed to keep the law, then not only are believers unable to love because of their pervasive depravity, but neither do they have the means to love even if they were able to. Double whammy!

~ Andy

%d bloggers like this: