Baptism, the Rio Grande, Worksism, and Faith-alonism

The thing is that faith alone tends towards a worksist life while “worksism” (as Evangelicals would label it) tends towards rest in Jesus. What I mean is simple:

Evangelicals say if you teach baptism is essential to salvation, that’s “worksism.” Ok, well the people who teach that get dunked, are secure in the knowledge that they’re saved, and move on to live a good Christian life but without the constant refrain of “better, stronger, faster” that Evangelicalism pushes down your throat. Like someone crossing from Mexico to Texas knows they’ve arrived in Texas because they crossed the Rio Grande, so they know they’ve passed from death to life because not only did they believe or pray the sinner’s prayer or cross any other imaginary line, but they crossed a definite landmark, a body of water, in baptism.

Meanwhile, Evangelicals who’ve rejected baptism as the point of salvation are never secure in their salvation, never sure they’ve crossed the imaginary (for in their system its imaginary) line between death and life, and so keep having to invite Jesus into their hearts at the altar call OVER and OVER and OVER, and as John Piper would have it, preach the gospel to themselves every day…rebelieve the same gospel of faith alone in faith alone that they believe (or do they) saved them, because they can never be sure they believed it enough, or rather that their belief came from a supernatural source rather than mere free will which wouldn’t count, so they must do it again and again to be sure its perfect belief, because its got to be perfect. And they must make sure to always be more pius, better, stronger, faster, always perfectly devoted, lest they forget to put FULL assurance in Christ’s work alone. They must work hard to make sure they believed PERFECTLY and put FULL assurance in Christ….and good gracious that’s hard works! Harder than keeping the whole Talmud, in fact.

Did the cross complete the sacrifice or were the resurrection and ascension neccessary parts thereof?

The solution to the worship of death in Christianity is the recognition that on the Day of Atonement the slaying of the victim was not in and of itself the sacrificial act, but rather the sprinkling of the blood on the mercy seat in the Holy of Holies was.  This truth was noticed by a certain ‘heretic’ during the Reformation while reading Hebrews. He noticed that Hebrews says that while on earth “he could not be a priest” and “it is evident that our Lord sprang from Judah, not Levi” meaning the sacrifice could not be completed on earth, and that Hebrews places the time of Jesus’ priesthood as his entrance into heaven and puts a great deal of emphasis on his entrance into the true Holy of Holies and the blood of sprinkling which he sprinkled there “purifying the heavens.” And due to opposition to his views, mention of this interpretation made it into many Calvinistic commentaries where they seek (in vain) to disprove it.

For an examaple, see: A Commentary on the Epistle to the Hebrews, By Philip Edgcumbe Hughes, page 341 commenting on Heb 9:12):

If the sacrifice was not completed merely by a death, but if the resurrection and ascension were necessary even to complete the sacrifice because the culminating act is the sprinkling of blood in the heavenly Holy of Holies, does this not mitigate the worship of death to some extent?   For now the resurrection and ascension are actually involved in our salvation rather than just cool extras!!!!!!

Romans chapters 3-11 interpolated

“Romans is Paul’s greatest letter — his magnus opus.” (Bob Clanton)

“This letter is truly the most important piece in the New Testament. It is purest Gospel. It is well worth a Christian’s while not only to memorize it word for word but also to occupy himself with it daily, as though it were the daily bread of the soul.” (Martin Luther’s preface to Romans)

Romans is Paul’s suckiest letter, the most confusing and convoluted, and contradictory.  If Romans and Galatians (which are probably forgeries anyway, or at least heavily interpolated in the case of Romans) had been left out, I think I might actually like Paul.  Or better yet, had Galatians been left out since its a forgery, and had Romans not bee interpolated, I would like Paul.

Romans begins as a money letter.  Paul tells the Romans he’s coming to Rome intending to go on to Spain, and he’s basically saying “Get some money ready because I expect you to help me finance the trip from Rome to Spain.”  He closes the letter with the same appeal.  Now in a money letter like that, you don’t fill it with convoluted controversial and in point of fact outright heretical nonsense that will make your would be benefactors say “Hell no heretic, you aint getting none of our money.”   Therefore, Romans 3-11 is instantly suspect as interpolation. Its a major, and counter-productive, distraction from the actual purpose of the letter.

If you read Romans 1-2, 12-16 you see the transition between chapter 2 and 12 is perfect, while following chapter 11, the “therefore” of the opening of chapter 12 (“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice,…”) would be complete nonsense:

2:24 For the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles through you, as it is written. 25 For circumcision verily profiteth, if thou keep the law: but if thou be a breaker of the law, thy circumcision is made uncircumcision. 26 Therefore if the uncircumcision keep the righteousness of the law, shall not his uncircumcision be counted for circumcision? 27 And shall not uncircumcision which is by nature, if it fulfil the law, judge thee, who by the letter and circumcision dost transgress the law? 28 For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: 29 But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God. 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Furthermore, the nature of the letter as an appeal for money with just a few admonitions on living the Christian life is retained.  Once 3-11 are added it becomes a convoluted theological treatise.  Furthermore, Romans 6 is clearly a second interpolation answering the interpolation of 3-5, and 10-11 is a second interpolation answering the interpolation of 7-9!  Obviously at least 3 authors worked on Romans over time. (Romans 13:1-7 is obvious interpolation as well.)

But where’s the mss evidence of this?  Burned up.  But we know that Marcion of Sinope had published in 140 AD the first edition of the Pauline Corpus, and his edition differed from the later Catholic edition not only in that it lacked Hebrews, 1st and 2nd Timothy, and Titus, but also in that Romans was much much shorter, as Tertullian tells us in his Fifth Book Against Marcion, in chapter 13, “What large gaps Marcion has made in this book, we need not even go into.”  Tertullian gives us minute detail of all the minor textual variations between Marcion’s Paul and the Catholic Paul in the other epistles (they’re just as minor as any variations found in the apparatus of Nestle-Aland)….but with Romans, he refuses to give us any info other than that Marcion did include Romans 1-2.  Why?   Because the favorite part of the Catholics, 3-11 was missing, because they invented it.

Edit: The above quote of Tertullian was a quote from memory, which turns out to be a paraphrase and yet accurately captures Tertullian’s point.  The actual text is below.

In Latin, as found in Evans’ 1972 edition:

Quantas autem foveas in ista vel maxime epistula Marcion fecerit, auferendo quae voluit, de
nostri instrumenti integritate parebit.

According to Holmes’ 1870 translation:

But what serious gaps Marcion has made in this epistle especially, by withdrawing whole passages at his will, will be clear from the unmutilated text of our own copy.

According to Evans’ 1972 translation:

But how many ditches Marcion has dug,
especially in this epistle, by removing all that he would, will
become evident from the complete text of my copy.

Tertullian’s theory is that the Catholic copies are correct, and his only “proof” for this theory is ad hominem attack, namely that he accuses Marcion of being a heretic and having taught that there are two gods.  Its unlikely that this was actually the case.  This is exactly the kind of trumped up nonsense that Catholic writers used to suppress pure copies of scriptural books in favor of their forged or interpolated texts: just accuse the publisher who publishes the pure text of some ridiculous heresy, and everyone will flock to your forged and manipulated edition!

The Baptists are a “perfect dungill”

I found a quote today by a guy named Andrew Fuller (a Calvinist Baptist) who once said “Had matters had gone on but a few years the Baptists would have become a perfect dunghill in society.”

Most sites claim he meant that if Baptists had not moderated their Calvinism a bit, they would have become a perfect dunghill (See this url for example). The Andrew Fuller Center, however, says that Fuller never moderated his Calvinism at all and that this isn’t what he was talking about (see here).

In any case, from my perspective, the Baptists have been a perfect dunghill on society all my life, and certainly longer.  In fact “dunghill” sounds too tame to be accurate.

This denomination calling itself Baptist opposes baptism, teaches once saved always saved and faith alone in both justification and sanctification, takes a dump on morality….its a putrid cesspool of antichristian hogwash.  And they’re always speaking out of two sides of their mouth.  Yes, sometimes they preach against sin, like saying homosexuality is a sin, but out of the other side of their mouth comes “but you can live in that sin and be saved because of faith alone and once saved always saved.”   Yes, they are a dunghill, and its not just because of Calvinism.  Even the Arminian Baptists are a dunghill, because they teach faith alone and once saved always saved, born that way, born a sinner…the perfect storm of Satanic doctrines that destroys the moral fabric of society.  And then on top of that, with their opposition to baptism, they prevent countless supposed believers from getting baptized, and thus from ever receiving the remission of sins and the Holy Ghost per Acts 2:38 “Repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus every one of you, for the remission of sins and you will receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”  Yes, they’re a perfect dunghill indeed.

Now I must cry out in words similar to those of Paul in Romans 7:24,

O wretched society that we are! Who will deliver us from this denomination of death?

Excommunication or “church discipline” for switching churches

In a previous post (Protestantism is secularized Catholic monasticism…the proof) I pointed out that I have been reading a book (on my Amazon Kindle) by Thomas Merton called The Life of the Vows.  Merton was a Roman Catholic monk of the Cistercian Order, and I began reading this out of curiosity about what monasticism is like in modern Catholicism (Merton lived 1915 – 1968). I pointed out there some similarities between Roman Catholic monasticism and Calvinism, illustrating them with quotes from the book.  Continuing that line of thought, here’s another quote:

 “Flight: a religious sins against the vow of obedience when he leaves the monastery in order to get away from the superior. In our Order, this illicit departure from the monastery explicitly involves mortal or venial sin against the law of enclosure. Flight and apostasy involve excommunication.” (Kindle Location 5315)

We pointed out in the other post concerning terminology, that if you change “monastery” to “local church” and “superior” to “pastor” you have modern Calvinist practice. Also, we pointed out that “religious” or “monk” here can be replaced by “elect” (we could also use the term “church member” there).  Also, we quoted from the book where Merton states plainly that the vow of obedience is not a vow to obey God but a vow to obey the superior (the abbot so far as Catholic monasticism is concerned, the pastor in Calvinism).

Below we will make those substitutions, and you will see how Calvinism mimicks the cult-like nature of Catholic monasticism.  One more substitution of terminology will be needed, i.e. “law of enclosure” = “law of church membership.”

“Flight: a church member sins against the vow of obedience when he leaves the local church in order to get away from the pastor. In our Order, this illicit departure from the local church explicitly involves mortal or venial sin against the law of church membership. Flight and apostasy involve excommunication.” (substitutions to illustrate Calvinist parallels)

Notice how flight from a particular “superior” is viewed as equivalent to apostasy!  Its exactly the same in modern Calvinist churches.

Now we know why Calvinist pastors stalk people when they leave their churches! We also know why when someone leaves a Calvinist church they “put them under church discipline.” Because Calvinism is secularized monastic cultism.

5 Reasons Why Calvinism Makes Me Want To Gouge My Eyes Out

I don’t think I’ve ever found a blog article I liked on patheos before. Its generally a bastion of liberal Calvinist hogwash (yes, from my perspective, Calvinism is liberal).  But today I found a blog post there I actually liked…alot.

5 Reasons Why Calvinism Makes Me Want To Gouge My Eyes Out

His best point may be #5, Calvinism produces some of the most toxic culture in Christianity.

I feel somewhat bad saying this, but I think I can honestly admit that there are only 3 Calvinists I’ve met in my life who I actually like– two are friends in my “real” life and one is a Christian blogger whom I really like and respect. Even those inside the movement are realizing the toxicity of the culture as one of my Calvinist friends recently told me that even they find the likability factor of most Calvinists to be wanting. If insiders experience the culture this way, could it be that something is totally depraved about it? (bad pun)

I tried to give it my best shot– really, I did. I think the last straw was in seminary when I asked the guy sitting next to me why he was a Calvinist and he simply replied, “because it’s on every page of scripture”. Or, maybe it was the way many Calvinists treat women as second class citizens. Or maybe it’s the way being told I’m “totally depraved” and that God “might not have picked me” makes me hate myself and live in constant fear. Or maybe it was just the obnoxious behavior of Calvinists on twitter. Perhaps it was even Driscoll himself.

I don’t know. What I do know, is that even if Calvinism were true, I wouldn’t last a day in Calvinist culture. No thanks.


Protestantism is secularized Catholic monasticism…the proof

A few days ago I began reading a book (on my Amazon Kindle) by Thomas Merton called The Life of the Vows.  Merton was a Roman Catholic monk of the Cistercian Order, and I began reading this out of curiosity about what monasticism is like in modern Catholicism (Merton lived 1915 – 1968).

In reading the book, I’ve found that 29% through it (according to Kindle’s reckoning) I began to notice many parallels in stupid attitudes between Calvinism and modern Catholic monkery. Por ejemplo:

 “The monk, having renounced his own will, having given up the running of his own life and the free use of his body and even of his soul in some matters, unites himself to the monastic community and is placed in a permanent state of victimhood.” (Kindle location 3814, the italics are Merton’s own.)

To see how this fits Calvinism, just replace “monk” with “elect” and “monastic community” with “local church”, as follows:

 “The elect, having renounced his own will, having given up the running of his own life and the free use of his body and even of his soul in some matters, unites himself to the local church and is placed in a permanent state of victimhood.”

See that?

Let’s look at another quote:

 “Hence the vow of obedience is not a vow to obey God. It is a vow to God that we will keep our promise of obedience to our superior and to our religious rule.” (Kindle location 3822, italics are Merton’s own)

Now, if you just change “superior” to “pastor” and “religious rule” to “membership covenant” you have Calvinism.

 “Hence the vow of obedience is not a vow to obey God. It is a vow to God that we will keep our promise of obedience to our pastor and to our membership covenant.”

Let’s look at another one:

 “The professed renounces the free disposition of his own actions, his body, his property, and gives the Order the right to use him for its work, etc., within the limit of the Rule.” (Location 3829, italics are Merton’s)

The only difference between this and Calvinism is that they have no “Rule” to limit their abuse of the one who enters their Order. The same selling of oneself into slavery, however, is demanded by them.

Now let’s see the clincher:

 “(a) a professed cannot take legal action against the superior for ‘violation of the contract’–sue him for damanges (of course an abuse can be reported to Rome, but this is not a ‘lawsuit’)…” (Kindle location 3844)

There’s Sovereign Grace Ministries right there.  You can’t sue the pastor, nor do they want you informing the cops if he abuses anyone. All you can do is report the abuse to Rome….er…I mean, the pastor himself.

So there you have it!  Calvinism, indeed all of institutional Protestantism, is just a somewhat secularized version of Catholic monasticism!

Edit: I probably should have said in the title, “Protestantism is a secularized version of the worst aspects of Catholic monasticism…the proof”, and in the sentence above, “Calvinism, indeed all of institutional Protestantism, is just a somewhat secularized version of the worst aspects of Catholic monasticism!”  Its the more cult-like aspects of Catholic monasticism that Protestantism has retained and transferred from the Abbot to the Pastor, from the monastery to the local church.

(Please forgive the fact that in the quotations I use the Kindle location, as actual page numbers aren’t available for this title on Kindle.)

Why the U.S. is behind in science

Every President since Ronaldus Magnus (or probably even before) has bemoaned that the U.S. is behind the rest of the world in math and science. No wonder! If all you teach the young skulls full of mush in the science classroom is that they came from a monkey, how the hell do you expect them to be anything but behind in science?  Atheist metaphysics and mythology have no more a place in the “science” classroom than creationism: There’s no reason to deal with the origin of the universe or of life in science, which should be a practical discipline, not the bastard love-child of history and philosophy.  Let science teach how to do something useful, and let philosophers ponder the origins of the universe. Quit calling this abominable mixture of the practical with the fanciful “science.”

This rant brought to you by my immediate thoughts on reading “Kirsten Powers: When a Liberal is Almost Right About God and Politics” at Paul’s Passing Thoughts.

Calvinism’s Get Out of Election Free Card


Probably the best post Paul D has ever written.

Originally posted on Paul's Passing Thoughts:

ppt-jpeg4We will begin this post by reviewing the abysmal belief system that is Calvinism, but in the final analysis, there is good news for those who embrace it; at least in their own minds.

Calvinism is a hopeless belief system. Plainly, there is no assurance of salvation, and it completely devalues life. It posits God as a god that created mankind so that his wrath against sin could bring him glory. He created abject failure in order to bring himself glory. The heroes among the Calvinists are those who eloquently plunge the debts of how evil we are. That would be the Puritans. All of life’s energies are focused on realizing how worthless we are in God’s eyes. The code phrase is “giving all the glory to God.”

Then, at the one last final judgment, you find out if you hated yourself enough to get into heaven by faith alone…

View original 1,037 more words


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