Paul's Passing Thoughts

The Latest Tullian Tchividjian / Tom Chantry Episodes Expose the Folly of Protestant Church

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on December 9, 2016

hf-potters-house-2Paul Dohse for TANC Ministries: a response to the call to a repentance process for Tullian Tchividjian.

Tullian Tchividjian, the great-grandson of Billy Graham and a wildly popular teacher among evangelicals is also a sultan of authentic Protestant orthodoxy in our day. No one, but no one, can articulate Protestant orthodoxy better.

So, it shouldn’t surprise us that his immoral sexual exploits have become public, but it should surprise us that the who’s who of evangelicalism are calling for his complete departure from ministry. The same could be said for many other uber-popular evangelical leaders that have been caught with both hands in the cookie jar. Recent examples include RC Sproul Jr., Rob Turner, and Tom Chantry. Those are the most recent ones as these episodes are becoming un-news-worthy due to frequency.

Why should it surprise us that they are expected to resign from ministry? Because their behavior is the logical outcome of Protestant soteriology. I explained this in a recent post:

The Protestant Reformation was NEVER about individual transformation. Instead, it was about the extreme opposite. The real Protestant gospel was about growing in one’s understanding of how large the gulf is between God’s holiness and man’s depravity. This is a salvation process that begins with basic knowledge concerning man’s evil and God’s good (the knowledge of good and evil), and one grows in their salvation as they see the degree of discrepancy between man’s evil and God’s good. Therefore, one’s growth in salvation is determined by their increased appreciation of what Christ did for us, not anything we do.

True salvation, according to authentic Protestantism, begins with recognizing that man can only be evil, and only God can be good. Growth in salvation is determined by one’s understanding of the following: the degree of difference between the two.

Hence, according to the true Reformation gospel, God’s righteousness is purely substitutionary. This is Martin Luther’s “alien righteousness.” Now, what Protestants ASSUME is the following: “Well, but of course, before we were saved we had no righteousness of our own.” Um, no, the Protestant gospel demands an alien righteousness throughout the salvation PROCESS while salvation (being justified before God) requires a “righteousness outside of us.” Our righteousness (justification) is therefore said to be a mere “legal declaration.”

The new birth is then relegated to a mere gift that enables one to perceive (only) God’s holiness as set against our wickedness. That’s the Protestant gospel plain and simple and it’s not even arguable.

Tom Chantry, son of Reformed icon Walter Chantry, and recently indicted for child molestation, put it this way:

One way to summarize the doctrine of divine sovereignty is this: It is God who acts, not man. How will the lost be saved? God must act. How will sinful Christians overcome the “old man”? God must act. How will the church grow in both holiness and influence? Again, God must act. He is the sovereign; He is the great Actor in every aspect of our spiritual life.

This is the typical verbiage we hear non-stop from evangelical pastors in every kind of church. Yet, in light of further allegations concerning Tchividjian, a group of well-known evangelicals have penned an open letter that further illustrates the decadence of the Protestant Institutional church. While knowing grade-A-well that Protestantism promotes the total depravity of the saints, church leaders continue to advertise the church as a cultural moral compass and society’s moral high ground. This is a deliberate ploy that plays to the expectations of society at large.

This is the church’s cultish approach that draws people in under the pretense of individual transformation and healing, and then uses assumptions to slowly strip them of all individualism and personal identity with God. This eventually makes them slaves of ecclesiological authority. If “believers” have no righteousness infused within as a result of the new birth, they have no right to their own lives or ability to determine God’s will for themselves. The church has always claimed authority over the souls of mankind by proxy.

This is the institutional church scam: the same “behaviorism or moralism” disdained as an affront to God within the church is used to recommend itself to the world. While making any moral performance an act of God alone, they call on Tchividjian to “repent.” Really? Tchividjian is a leading authority on what the Reformers meant by that word and must know that these “teachers” are grandstanding. Obviously, none of them really believe that any person can repent or do any good work. In fact, they say it continually.

Furthermore, why are any of these scholarly reprobates shamed at all? According to their theology it was God who didn’t act to prevent their behavior to begin with. Also, such behavior is inevitable according to their presuppositions concerning mankind.

And lastly, why are sane people giving their hard earned money or time to this gargantuan lie called “church”?

Revised: Calvinist Tom Chantry and My Friend the King

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on February 25, 2013

ppt-jpeg4My little exchange with pastor Tom Chantry here at PPT (see screen shots below) has prompted me to make a point that I have been thinking about for three years. I know my use of the “philosopher king” nomenclature is seen as satire, but it really isn’t.  These guys think they have authority over all of us. They really do. I could cite data galore, but I will instead mention the Calvinist pastor from Bellefontaine, Ohio who tried to place me under church discipline as a process possibly ending with me being declared an unbeliever. I have never talked to this guy in my life until he called me to….”I am trying to gain a brother here.” This is just fact: Reformed elders think heaven will honor their declarations and remove names from the book of life. Calvin and Luther believed elders have that kind of authority (Calvin’s “power of the keys”), and their offspring are all too eager to believe them. Though I don’t know for certain, I think my name has been removed from the book of life by Reformed elders on three occasions.

And like the Bellefontaine case, these guys think they interpret reality for us. I was instructed to repent of what I saw (the Man of God conference controversy) because this philosopher king proclaimed that I really didn’t see it. This resulted in a visit to my home by three local pastors who pushed his agenda, albeit two of them didn’t really get what was going on. But the message was basically the same: I didn’t really see what I saw because they said so.

They think many take this idea seriously. And worse yet, I think they are right. These guys come to PPT and declare me unknowing, and that is the end of the discussion among their Kool-Aid drinking followers. When members of their church come to PPT and see that the philosopher king has passed judgment on me regardless of the facts—end of discussion. In spite of the damning data in regard to CJ Mahaney, a group of philosopher kings declared him fit for ministry—end of discussion. Hence, victims of his spiritual despotism can only watch as he enjoys rock star status among followers that Jim Jones would have died to have for himself. More correctly, some only watch while others have dragged this sorry excuse for a pastor into court. American pastors have become so bloviated with this idea that secular courts are now the only recourse for Christians to expose unspeakable evil in the church. It is clear: church discipline is only for congregants and not elders. The pastorate refuses to rebuke renegade pastors publically as they are commanded to do by Scripture. Instead, they go a step further and cover for them.

I was once a fire system inspector for a private firm in Indiana. I was primarily assigned to homes for the mentally disabled. It was a very interesting job. It was a job that preached many sermons to me throughout the week. I remember that I was once grumbling to myself on the way to an inspection about my life in general. After I saw the residents of that home, I never grumbled about my imperfect circumstances again. That is a sermon that is fresh in my mind until this day.

Then there was one who I will call “Purity.” After a while, I had my own names for the residents. These names reminded me of what God was teaching me through their lives. She was a sixteen-year-old that had the mind of someone around six-years-old. She was fascinated that I have a daughter that is a missionary in Puerto Rico. She followed me around  as I was doing my work trying to find out everything she could about my daughter. Till this day, I wonder if there is a more sincere soul walking upon the earth. She was a sermon about the beauty of righteousness—a sermon I will never forget. Then there were the gatekeepers. They wheeled around and acted like they were asleep while the staff changed the codes on the entry/exit doors. They then enjoyed giving vendors and inspectors the codes so they didn’t have to mess around with all the red tape at the administration office. A wonderful service! And “Anna” who appeared to be merely mumbling in her bed, but closer observance revealed a person in constant prayer.

But my favorite was the king. He really thought he was a king. The staff also aided him in his endeavor to be a hard-working king. They bought him a crown and a cape. He would go from room to room with a legal pad and write new laws and then verbally proclaim them. Well, this was pretty cool. I got permission from the company to take him out to lunch. The plan was Burger King of course, but unfortunately, the opportunity never presented itself after I obtained permission.

I’m thankful for the king. He enables me to think lightly sometimes of the Calvinists who also really think they are kings. But they have no excuse and I don’t like them because unlike the king, they are abusive spiritual despots. He went from room to room proclaiming good laws that he thought would help people. He wasn’t really interested in controlling people. He wasn’t interested in power.

He is a good sermon for the Calvinists because if you are only a king in your own mind—at least be a good one.

paul

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Tom Chantry Doesn’t Like the Charismatic Brand of the Reformation’s False Gospel

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on February 21, 2013

ppt-jpeg4“Chantry doesn’t like Charismatic subjective results of the same Reformed objective gospel. Therefore, he denies that they have the same gospel. That’s not true.”  

I was sent a post written by Reformed Baptist Tom Chantry. As the rats begin jumping from that sinking ship named New Calvinism, the boring side of Calvinism is trying to distance themselves from Charismatic Calvinists like CJ Mahaney. New Calvinism, which is a resurgence of authentic Calvinism, at least makes heresy a little fun with concoctions like the scream of the damned which was an ad hoc addition to the 2009 Resolved Conference hosted by the who’s who of contemporary Reformed doctrine. Usually, the tyranny and spiritual abuse that goes hand in metaphysical hand with Reformed doctrine dampens any semblance of humor, but this bunch is special; their shenanigans can bring laughter to the darkest realities. Nevertheless, Chantry bemoans the following reality in said article:

That “Reformed Charismaticism” should eventually go down this path – dragging the rest of the “New Calvinism” with it – was predictable.  Such a doctrine has no solid confession.  It pays scant attention to the means of grace.  It is not actually Reformed in any meaningful sense.

Chantry’s grammatical scare quotes indicate so-called Reformed Charismaticism on the first wise and New Calvinism isn’t “New….” on the second. He is dead wrong on the first and absolutely correct on the second.

Let’s take the second scare quote first. New Calvinism isn’t new, it’s a resurgence of the original authentic article. That would be, the centrality of the objective gospel outside of us. That’s a contemporary tag, but is an apt in regard to the authentic Reformed gospel. Nothing happens inside of us—grace comes from outside of us completely.

“But Paul, that’s true isn’t it? We were not saved by anything inside of us; it all came from God’s righteousness that was imputed to us. Certainly, you are not saying that we had any righteousness inside of us that aided our salvation!”

Sigh. This is where the Reformers have been pulling the wool over our eyes for the better part of 500 years. They believe that righteousness is only imputed to us positionally, and not internally. We remain the same. God does everything in both salvation and our Christian walk. Our salvation is predetermined, and our Christian walk is predetermined. All righteousness/grace remains outside of the “believer.” Hence, and don’t miss this, only the gospel is objective. We are so totally depraved that if any righteousness at all is within us, anything that we would make of it intellectually would be subjective at best. The only reality lifeline man has is the same lifeline that saves him: the gospel.

Therefore, we live by the gospel; i.e., an “objective” endeavor to obtain a deeper and deeper knowledge of our sinfulness (as believers) in order to have a deeper and deeper understanding of God’s holiness and appreciation for the depths of His sacrifice for our sin. Depending on the stripe of Reformed buffoonery, the result is a manifestation of Christ’s obedience in the Holy Spirit realm as opposed to the worldly (flesh) realm or mere wellbeing of spirit with a disregard for whatever God decides to do in our lives.

In the first case, the perfect life that Christ lived on earth is imputed to our Christian walk so that we can live by faith alone in sanctification. When Christ’s obedience is manifested in the Spirit realm, we experience it because we are in that realm, but it is not because of anything inside of us. We experience it as if we are performing the work, but it is really the manifestation of Christ in the Spirit realm.

The latter is explained well in the magnum opus of the Reformation: Martin Luther’s Heidelberg Disputation. In that document, he clearly states that we don’t work, but rather God works as it is predetermined for our particular life. Luther stated that as we mediate on our total depravity and God’s holiness we experience death which leads to a joyful resurrection. In other words, the gateway to joy is a deeper understanding of our total depravity. This is the basis of John Piper’s Christian Hedonism in 500,000 words or less. This was also Luther’s definition of the new birth. For Luther, the new birth was progressive and not a onetime event.

John Calvin then took Luther’s concept and applied its dualism (all reality being interpreted through God’s holiness and our depravity) to the full spectrum of how religion is experienced, lived, and believed. That would be the Calvin Institutes of the Christian Religion. This all survives under masterful preaching that only follows this systematized dualism, but much can be preached about God’s holiness and our sinfulness. All preaching by the likes Spurgeon et al can be parsed into this dual prism.  Missing is practical application and a true understanding of our role in the Christian walk which results in what we see today in the American church. This eventually leads to a social death and then historical resurgences that follow.

Some of what I am saying can be seen in Chantry’s rant:

One way to summarize the doctrine of divine sovereignty is this: It is God who acts, not man.  How will the lost be saved?  God must act.  How will sinful Christians overcome the “old man”?  God must act.  How will the church grow in both holiness and influence?  Again, God must act.  He is the sovereign; He is the great Actor in every aspect of our spiritual life.

Notice that “old man” is in scare quotes. They don’t believe that there is any “old man.” We don’t change—we remain empty vessels. The Bible is merely a tool for aiding us in seeing Luther’s “cross story” as opposed to our “glory story.” Again, this fleshes out in many different ways among Reformed cultists. The sacraments, along with preaching Luther’s cross story, aid us in seeing the need for constant forgiveness, what is called “deep repentance” leading to death and subsequent resurrection experienced by joy. The Christian walk is an endeavor to live by faith alone which is an experience, not a work that we do. This is why the Reformers were so exercised in regard to the book of James—James stated a salvation by faith alone while calling for believers to add works to their salvific faith. This turns Reformed theology completely on its head.

Chantry’s thesis is beyond lame. The Charismatic New Calvinists know their cuts of Reformed theology very well. CJ Mahaney’s five word gospel, “Christ died for our sins” and all reality flowing out of that is classic Reformed theology. Chantry doesn’t like Charismatic subjective results of the same Reformed objective gospel. Therefore, he denies that they have the same gospel. That’s not true. When all reality is interpreted through dualism, the results are always subjective. But the prism is the same.

That’s why Jesus said that a tree is known by its fruit. If Chantry doesn’t like the fruit he needs to change trees.

paul

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