Paul's Passing Thoughts

Denial of the New Birth

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on June 8, 2016

Steve Lawson Sloppy Hermeneutics: Will Christ Personally Torment Unbelievers in Hell for Eternity?

Posted in Uncategorized by pptmoderator on March 7, 2015

Lawson-PreachingOriginally published January 2, 2014

Something has been on my mind for some time that I have never written about. During the 2009 Resolved conference, “Pastor” Steve Lawson preached a sermon on the Great White Throne Judgment. In that message, Lawson claimed that Christ Himself will “be in hell”… “personally inflicting the wrath on unbelievers” for eternity. I know that Calvinism is heavily predicated on fear so I wasn’t surprised that Lawson said it. Rob Bell committed the unpardonable sin among New Calvinists by removing the fear factor in his book “Love Wins.” Calvin himself taught that fear and terror of judgment was efficacious to the mortification and vivification process that enables Christians to stand in the final judgment (CI 3.3.3-7). Bell didn’t merely violate Scripture, he dissed a Reformed mainstay: fear and its kissing cousin control.

Hell, in and of itself, is sobering enough, but apparently Lawson thought the reality of it needed some embellishing. The idea that Christ Himself will be in hell inflicting the punishment personally is a bit unsettling to me. It seems to picture Christ as a hateful God whose wrath never ceases. Instead of punishment being meted out in a hell prepared for the devil and his angels, we have Christ in hell inflicting the torment personally for all of eternity. Christ always spoke of hell as a PLACE of torment, and any idea of Him being the personal tormentor is conspicuously missing. Lawson used the following passage from Revelation for his proof text:

Revelation 14:10 – he also will drink the wine of God’s wrath, poured full strength into the cup of his anger, and he will be tormented with fire and sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb.

This is really sloppy hermeneutics for many reasons, but let me discuss a few. The context of Rev 14:10 is the tribulation period. Revelation 14:6ff. predicts the final wrath of God being poured out upon the earth. This is preceded by a final warning heralded via three angels. The first proclaims the gospel; the second announces the final judgment of Babylon the great, and the third announces the primary woe that will befall those living in Babylon—this is specifically what Rev 14:10 is about. That verse describes the specific woe that the inhabitants will suffer in the presence of Christ and the angels; i.e., fire and sulfur.

This is exactly what happens when the judgment is executed upon Babylon:

Revelation 18:9 – And the kings of the earth, who committed sexual immorality and lived in luxury with her, will weep and wail over her when they see the smoke of her burning. 10 They will stand far off, in fear of her torment, and say, “Alas! Alas! You great city, you mighty city, Babylon! For in a single hour your judgment has come.”

…And all shipmasters and seafaring men, sailors and all whose trade is on the sea, stood far off 18 and cried out as they saw the smoke of her burning, “What city was like the great city?”

In verse 11 of Revelation 14, the angel also warns that the inhabitants of Babylon will seal their eternal fate by accepting the mark of the beast. That verse begins with the transition And which adds information. In the same way they are burned with fire when Christ and the angels execute judgment on Babylon, they will suffer for eternity. But the point is the following:

And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever, and they have no rest, day or night, these worshipers of the beast and its image, and whoever receives the mark of its name.”

The judgment in the presence of Christ and the angels regards the judgment on Babylon during the tribulation period, verse 11 speaks of their eternal judgment as a consequence of accepting the mark of the beast. And apparently, they are warned beforehand by the third angel not to do so. This is the theses of the third angel’s message and it has two parts: receiving the mark of the beast will lead to a present judgment by Christ and the angels upon Babylon, and a sealing of their eternal fate:

Revelation 14:9 – And another angel, a third, followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and its image and receives a mark on his forehead or on his hand,

Hence, verse 12 calls for the endurance of the saints because not receiving the mark of the beast will cost them their lives. Verse 13 promises a blessing for those who die in the Lord thereafter. Right before the judgment on Babylon, God calls for his people who have not received the mark to come out of Babylon before the judgment (Rev 17:4,5).

Furthermore, the subject is clearly not EVERY person who will be condemned to hell, but rather those who receive the mark of the beast. Any other conclusion from the context is presumptuous at best.

A suggestion: make the Bible your authority and not men. Such a rendering of Revelation 14:10 constructs a certain image of Christ in our minds. And it is not a good idea that such images are founded on iffy interpretations of God’s word.

Moreover, there is no other verse in the Bible that supports this view by Lawson. His manly academic credentials do not trump common sense.

paul

What’s in a Video? Part One: MacArthur’s Fall

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on May 24, 2012

“CJ Mahaney could not be an elder in MacArthur’s church for many reasons, but yet, MacArthur joyfully gives him credibility as being an elder par excellent …. MacArthur’s endorsement of Mahaney assumes his innocence in a long list of unresolved conflict, and rubs salt in the wounds of Mahaney’s victims.”

The promo video for this year’s 2012 Resolved Conference is sickening for anybody that can think for themselves. I use YouTube to post my videos, and have received comments from people there regarding the clip (http://youtu.be/3BbyzPkE_kc):

Where is my barf bag? God, please deliver us from conferences and churches,

Kinda hokey. Just from the images…who do you think is being worshiped here?

For anybody who has any grey substance between their ears at all, it’s obvious who is being worshiped. But the video was not designed out of the figment of somebody’s imagination. The images and what is stated has meaning. I received the following comments on my blog concerning the light from heaven thing going on in the video:

Paul I am confused about the sparkly stuff that is falling down on these enlightened ones. Is this fairy dust?

That was very disturbing to watch.

What’s with the beams of light streaming down behind them and all the little snowflakes? It looks like they are trying to make them look like they are speaking to us from heaven or something…all ethereal and everything.

I was thinking of the same things you were about the fairy dust- strange indeed. Another thing to notice was the movie like ending of the promo- felt like I was about to watch the avengers or transformers. I guess that epic ending was to evoke a response of awe and wonder at the sheer excitement of seeing the “Christian” heros of modern evangelical movement. Next we will see them donned with capes and claim abilities of being able to see right through your depraved soul [actually, Mark Driscoll is making that claim of late].

But believe it or not, the “light from heaven” thing has meaning. Notice that the beams of light come down, but the little dots are going up. That’s the Gnostic cybernetic loop of  how the totally depraved zombie sheep receive the truth of the gospel. The truth of the word is cycled from heaven through the spiritually enlightened elders. Farfetched? Well then, consider this statement from heretic/New Calvinist Dr. Devon Berry:

The text here implies that there was an interactive nature between three entities: The preacher, the hearers, and the Word. Note this cycle: Paul, from the Word, delivers words. The Bereans, from Paul’s words, go to the Word. The Word cycles from God, through the preacher, to the people, back to the Word, and this, verse 12 tells us, produced belief in the God of the Word. An important thing to note is that this happened daily – suggesting a regular interaction between preaching, personal study, and the Word.

Berry was making the case throughout the particular message that sanctifying truth only comes through Reformed elders, a belief widely held among New Calvinists. And I believe that the coming down of light, and the going up of the dots are a subtle allusion to the direct connection that New Calvinists believe these men have with heaven that is efficacious to the evangelical peasantry. Other illusions to Gnosticism in this video will be mentioned in the forthcoming parts.

In all, MacArthur’s willingness to be a part of all of this speaks for itself. It is an endorsement of the worst kind of heresy (the fusion of justification and sanctification) and those who propagate it. MacArthur’s appearance at this conference illustrates his utter indifference to basic biblical principles; such as, the importance of reconciliation, justice, and the qualifications of elders. CJ Mahaney could not be an elder in MacArthur’s church for many reasons, but yet, MacArthur joyfully gives him credibility as being an elder par excellent. MacArthur also shows his true heart towards the spiritually abused and his total lack of compassion towards them. MacArthur’s endorsement of Mahaney assumes his innocence in a long list of unresolved conflict, and rubs salt in the wounds of Mahaney’s victims.

The only thing in all of this that could be virtuous for MacArthur is the fact that this is the “Culmination” of the Resolved Conference. I strongly suspect that this is MacArthur’s way of gaining separation from Mahaney. But at the same time, it makes him a party to the concerted effort to protect the image of the New Calvinist movement which propagates a blatantly false gospel. It’s no accident that MacArthur is no longer invited to the T4G conference, and it is no accident that this conference (primarily sponsored by MacArthur’s church; ie, he has some control of it) is going to be terminated. Something is going on, but like the Piper controversy at Mac’s church, and the Mahaney controversy at RC Sproul’s church, nobody is talking. The image of the spiritual Camelot of our day must be protected. Gag.

paul

Shame On You John MacArthur!

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on April 23, 2012

Once a rabid respecter of John MacArthur, I now have absolutely no respect for him. I am keeping some of his books in my library for reference purposes, but that’s about it. And as one who actively promoted financing/support for Christians to attend his college, I now consider him a danger to the wellbeing of Christianity in general. I have watched his decline (due to bad company with the likes of mega-heretic John Piper) for some time, but his willingness to support and associate with CJ Mahaney reveals the true heart of John MacArthur Jr.

I am almost finished reading “Blight In The Vineyard” by John Immel, and I’m looking forward to writing a review on it, and I’m taking this review very seriously as I believe this book is one of the most relevant books of our day. I have made the book required reading for all in the Dohse household. Immel, among the other hefty services rendered to the church in said book, provides Cliff Notes (in a manner of speaking) for SGM Wikileaks.

I have gone to Wikileaks and read, primarily because Reformed despots say it is gossip to do so (and thereby doing my duty), but have really been unable to ascertain any great evil on the part of CJ Mahaney because of the massiveness of the documents. Well, Immel clears that all up by pointing out a few atrocities and the page numbers. The only one I had to see follows: the transcript of a recorded conversation between CJ Mahaney and SGM cofounder Larry  Tomczak. CJ Mahaney, according to the transcript by anybody’s measure, is trying to blackmail Tomczak who left SGM for doctrinal reasons (Calvinism).

Ok, look, what happened to Tomczac plays out over, and over, and over again in churches daily because of the new resurgence of Geneva style true-blue Calvinism. Aka, New Calvinism. As Charles Spurgeon once said, “Calvinism is the Gospel.” Therefore, as CJ said to Larry, “Doctrine is an unacceptable reason for leaving P.D.I” (People of Destiny International—later renamed SGM). If I only had a nickel for every time we see this played out here at TANK/PPT. It goes like this:

  1. The elders are informed someone is leaving for doctrinal issues.
  2. They are immediately confronted with “unrepentant, longstanding sin” in their lives. Like Calvin, they believe (out of necessity for control) that ANY sin is fodder for church discipline.
  3. They are placed in a church discipline “process” that includes counseling. When you have shown forth “fruits meet for repentance” as judged by fruit inspecting elders, you are released from the counseling (ie., you convert to Gospel Sanctification).
  4. If you try to leave the church without being released from “counseling,” the assembly is told that you are jumping ship in the middle of the Matthew 18 process. The congregation usually assumes the victim was confronted with an issue or dispute, and left before the offended party could come back with witnesses. The anti-gospel (synonymous with anti-Calvinism per Spurgeon) individual is then excommunicated which totally discredits him/her from blowing the whistle or challenging the doctrine of God’s anointed.

Apparently, in Tomczak’s case, that wasn’t going to fly, so CJ threatened to reveal sins committed by Tomczak’s (at the time a minor) son. Tomczak’s wife, who was on the line, called Mahaney out in regard to the fact that it was pure, unadulterated blackmail. Also consider that the son had confessed the sin and was granted forgiveness thereof. Unbelievably, when CJ is reminded of that, he tells the Tomcsaks that he wouldn’t have promised to keep the forgiven sins confidential if he knew at the time that they were going to leave for doctrinal reasons.

Immel also points out (according to Wikileaks documents) that Mahaney and SGM cronies had their attorneys review a proposal for revealing the sin/sins publically. Their attorneys strongly advised against it because Georgia law protects the rights of minors in such cases. But in a brilliant observation, Immel asks what would have happened if the church and the state of Georgia were the same! (as propagated by the Reformers for the necessary control of the totally depraved zombie sheep). Game over. Tomcsak submits or SGM reveals the information.

And this is the crux. Because Reformed leaders of the John Calvin Geneva Theocracy club cannot evoke the state to enforce their authority (not yet, anyway), they all stick together. MacArthur, Dever, Mohler, Piper et al, see a huge lack of respect in the church for the authority that they think they should have among God’s people. How they choose to save the totally depraved zombie sheep from themselves is none of our business. They have no time to be concerned with the necessary fallout that accompanies the John Calvin gospel of the enlightened ones leading the totally depraved through the fabricated spiritual minefield they call sanctification.

This explains why the cries of abused sheep fall on the deaf ears of other leaders, time, and time again. I have become convinced of this unequivocally. Nevertheless, and while one also wonders what else might be in the Wikileaks documents, MacArthur’s willingness to associate with CJ Mahaney is deplorable. But this is who John MacArthur really is. My God fearing grandmother said it well, and often: “Birds of the feather flock together.”

paul

MacArthur; 2012 Resolved Conference; Feminism; John Huss; and Mac’s Continued New Calvinesque Demise

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on April 3, 2012

“But again, this is a prime example of how New Calvinists put dead men between us and our Bibles, and then distort history to make their case for progressive justification.”

“What’s good for the goose is good for the gander; if Huss is an authority for promoting Christocentrisity in all reality, then he also ought to be an authority for ordaining women in the church.”        

As I learn more and more about the New Calvinist movement, and Reformed history in general, I have to believe that the blogosphere drives New Calvinists blogkers. More on that later. New Calvinism is a return to hardcore Reformed philosophy. In 1970, the real Reformation gospel was rediscovered and systematized by the Australian Forum. The Forum was one of several recovery movements that rediscovered the Reformation gospel since the 17th century. Why does this gospel tend to disappear from time to time? Because it’s not the truth (it’s progressive justification), and it is always accompanied by spiritual tyranny. In fact, the Pilgrims fled to the New World to escape the Augustinian Church of England. You see, among many other issues, the Pilgrims disagreed with it being against the law to not attend C of E “worship” services. However, the Church of England was a little more merciful than New Calvinist Mark Dever—they would merely have the government fine you for not going to church; Mark Dever excommunicated 256 of his church members for nonattendance, an act that launched him into New Calvinist folklore and his present thriving popularity among New Calvinists.

The movement has continued to build on the original foundations of Reformed tradition, even persecuting Old Calvinists that have been sanctified over time by spiritual common sense. New Calvinists continue to promote their neo-reformation by pointing to all things old: creeds; counsels; confessions; catechisms (shorter and longer); and especially dead men of legendary status. Augustine, Calvin, Luther, Owen, Edwards, Spurgeon, etc., and the subject of this year’s 2012 Resolved Conference, John Huss, who will be promoted into New Calvinist iconic canonism by John MacArthur at this year’s Resolved Conference (sponsored by MacArthur’s church). From here, it just gets too rich.

I watched the promotional video clip on Resolved.org ( http://vimeo.com/iamresolved/re12theme ). Four years ago, I would have taken what MacArthur says in the clip at face value because of my former respect/trust for him. But he is a New Calvinist now, and this clip will be used to demonstrate how New Calvinism is making a fool of John MacArthur in the eyes of what used to be a stalwart of the faith. If not for the internet and the blogosphere, God’s people would helpless against the New Calvinist propaganda machine. Back in the day, if you were reading the Calvin Institutes and wanted more information on Augustine because Calvin quotes him in what seems like every other sentence, you were pretty much out of luck. But not in our day. Trust me, Al Gore didn’t invent the internet—God did.

So, since I no longer trust MacArthur, I simply googled “John Huss,” and what Robert Brinsmead said to me the other day in an email immediately came to mind; this is a paraphrase: “I wrote a treatise on Ellen White’s theology that only highlighted the positive points, but that’s what everybody else does with Luther’s writings.” Amen, and this is what the New Calvinists do to build their Reformation motif (at least Brinsmead is honest about it) that drives their propaganda machine; except in this case with Huss, it’s fodder for good humor.

In the clip, MacArthur claims that Huss was burned at the stake for preaching “three things”: every believer is part of the church; the Bible as sole authority; but primarily, Huss’ contention that Christ was the head of his church, and not the pope. Oh really? Of course, the third “thing” is to make the case for New Calvinism’s belief that only Christ is significant in regard to redemptive history. But again, this is a prime example of how New Calvinists put dead men between us and our Bibles, and then distort history to make their case for progressive justification.

Huss was burned at the stake for many other “things” other than the three that MacArthur mentioned in the clip, and one of them is greatly illumined by the lamp of hypocrisy if you consider this year’s Shepherd’s Conference (also sponsored by MacArthur’s church). One of the featured speakers was Voddie  Baucham who is a high profile figure in the Patriarchy movement. Baucham was all the rage at the conference which produced endless Twitter posts singing his praises. New Calvinists are also responsible for the Danvers Statement sponsored by The Counsel on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood. MacArthur himself has said: “God cannot be on display in a church where a woman is preaching.” This quote is from his series that contended against speaking in tongues. Oh, did I mention that the “Reformed Charismatic” CJ Mahaney will be featured at the Resolved Conference this year?

This brings us back to all of the much ado about Huss at this year’s Resolved Conference. Other than the “three things” MacArthur mentions, Huss was tricked into attending a counsel at Prague to discuss his many “radical” teachings:

He became a proponent of the ideas of the English reformer and theologian John Wycliffe. Huss like Wycliffe denounced the immorality of clergy, the sale of indulgences, accumulation of wealth by the clergy and the church and saw the Bible as the final authority in ecclesiastical matters. He was a proponent of the laity taking communion in both kinds, that is to say the bread and the wine, at a time when only the clergy received communion in both kinds. He translated the Bible into the language of the people and said “Women were made in the image of God and should fear no man” setting the stage for women to preach at Hussite services and participate in governing councils, not to mention fight beside their men in battle. It was the teaching and writing about his radical ideas that brought the attention of the Pope to Jan Hus [emphasis mine (Online source: http://historyreconsidered.net/The_Hussites.html)%5D.

Oh my. Huss was an advocate of feminism. On the one hand, Huss was executed for the crux of the Reformation (supposedly), but on the other hand, God was not on display in the churches of his followers because women were preaching there. Which is it Mac? I’m sorry, you can’t have it both ways—the blogosphere will not allow it. Let me add some additional references to this point:

Hus was influenced by Wyclif, but he went further than the Englishman ever did. Like Wyclif, much of what Hus wanted was a kind of return to basics: an end to abuses in the clergy, an emphasis on simple Christianity of the sort practiced by the Apostles. He went further in advocating unfettered preaching, and he explicitly refused to recognize a special status for the clergy. He came close to the Donatist heresy in claiming that Christians should listen only to priests who lived virtuous lives. He condemned the upper clergy as corrupt parasites and denied the pope any special powers in the secular world. He acknowledged the apostolic succession, but said only virtuous men were true popes and in any case their authority was strictly spiritual. Like Wyclif, when the Church appeared unwilling to reform itself, Hus argued that it was the duty of the Christian prince to undertake the reform and to use the coercive powers of the state if necessary. The reformed Church should be placed under the dominion of the prince.

Hus advocated both a Czech and a German Bible. He believed the common man could read the word of God without priestly intervention. He published a New Testament and Psalms in 1406 in Czech, followed by a complete Bible in 1413-1414.

It’s interesting to note that in 1412 Hus published a tract entitled “Recognizing the true way to salvation” in which he chose a woman to represent humanity in general. He told women they were made in the image of God and that they should act with dignity and courage and should fear no man. Among the Hussites, women preached and wrote. But after 1421, men again dominated the movement. I do not know the details of why this change occurred [emphasis added (Dr. E.L. Skip Knox, Boise State University; online source: http://europeanhistory.boisestate.edu/latemiddleages/heresy/13.shtml)%5D.

This can also be verified by the fact that Huss was primarily influenced by Wycliffe, and the Lollard Movement spawned by him was populated with women preachers. Why is it ok to prop the Reformers up as authorities by picking and choosing from their teachings only that which helps one’s agenda?  Why not leave dead men out of the equation and do what MacArthur used to do: point to the Scriptures as our authority—not dead Reformers. Why can’t the Resolved Conference Have a Scriptural theme instead of a man theme?  This is the credibility problem you run into when men are your primary authority. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander; if Huss is an authority for promoting Christocentrisity in all reality, then he also ought to be an authority for ordaining women in the church. But of course, the fruit of such hypocrisy does not fall far from the tree of those he associates with: http://solasisters.blogspot.com/2012/02/john-piper-comments-about-reverend.html .

Something else about this promotional clip makes me wonder. MacArthur presents Huss as a gospel preacher turning the World upside down with the whole the pen is mightier than the sword scenario. I wonder if Mac is going to mention that Huss had a standing military army? Huss set the pace for the following Reformation mentality:

Like Wyclif, when the Church appeared unwilling to reform itself, Hus argued that it was the duty of the Christian prince to undertake the reform and to use the coercive powers of the state if necessary. The reformed Church should be placed under the dominion of the prince (Ibid).

The Hussite army had one of the most feared military leaders in all of human history, Johann Ziska, and he invented one of the most effective military weapons of all time which was named after Huss. A picture of it follows. After Huss was executed, The Hussites kicked some serious Catholic butt and took names.

Say, that picture will look awesome on those high-tech screens at the Resolved Conference, don’t you think? In general, the Reformers followed the philosophy of Plato that government powers are needed to keep the totally depraved (and their uncontrollable instincts) contained.  And if you read the email I get, you would know that present-day New Calvinists use everything but a Hussite wagon to keep their totally depraved zombies in line.

MacArthur needs to bail from this movement, ask the church for forgiveness, and salvage what’s left of his legacy. That is, if it’s not already too late. Meanwhile, the more bloggers the better. Let the earth be full of them. Let them be ever fruitful and multiply. Let every word that comes from the mouths of New Calvinists be googled. But, of course, all truth is God’s truth unless it comes from the internet—the other internet—not the Geneva internet.

paul

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