Arminianism is a system of belief that attempts to explain the relationship between God's sovereignty and mankind's free will, especially in relation to salvation. Arminianism is named after Jacob Arminius (1560—1609), a Dutch theologian.

Arminianism: The Road to Rome

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  • Arminianism: The Road to Rome

    Augustus Toplady (1740-1778)

    Whose Voice Do You Hear?

    "My sheep, saith Christ, hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me; and I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never perish. O, most worthy Scriptures! which ought to compel us to have a faithful remembrance, and to note the tenor thereof; which is, the sheep of Christ shall never perish.

    "Doth Christ mean part of his elect, or all, think you? I do hold, and affirm, and also faithfully believe, that he meant all his elect, and not part, as some do full ungodly affirm. I confess and believe assuredly, that there shall never any of them perish: for I have good authority so to say; be- cause Christ is my author, and saith, if it were possible, the very elect should be deceived. Ergo, it is not possible that they can be so deceived, that they shall ever finally perish, or be damned: wherefore, whosoever doth affirm that there may be any (i.e. any of the elect) lost, doth affirm that Christ hath a torn body."1

    The above valuable letter of recantation is thus inscribed: "A Letter to the Congregation of Free-willers, by One that had been of that Persuasion, but come off, and now a Prisoner for Religion:" which superscription will hereafter, in its due place, supply us with a remark of more than slight importance.


    John Wesley, A Friend of Rome?

    To occupy the place of argument, it has been alleged that "Mr. Wesley is an old man;" and the Church of Rome is still older than he. Is that any reason why the enormities, either of the mother or the son, should pass unchastised?

    It has also been suggested, that "Mr. Wesley is a very laborious man:" not more laborious, I presume, than a certain active being, who is said to go to and fro in the earth, and walk up and down in it:2 nor yet more laborious, I should imagine, than certain ancient Sectarians, concerning whom it was long ago said, "Woe unto you Scribes, hypocrites; for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte:"3 nor, by any means, so usefully laborious, as a certain diligent member of the community, respecting whose variety of occupations the public have lately received the following intelligence: "The truth of the following instance of industry may be depended on: a poor man with a large family, now cries milk, every morning, in Lothbury, and the neighbourhood of the Royal Exchange; at eleven, he wheels about a barrow of potatoes; at one, he cleans shoes at the Change; after dinner, cries milk again; in the evening, sells sprats; and at night, finishes the measure of his labour as a watchman."4


    The Quarrel is With the Wolf

    Mr. Sellon, moreover, reminds me (p. 128.) that, "while the shepherds are quarrelling, the wolf gets into the sheep fold;" not impossible: but it so happens, that the present quarrel is not among "the shepherds," but with the "wolf" himself; which "quarrel" is warranted by every maxim of pastoral meekness and fidelity.

    I am further told, that, while I am "berating the Arminians, Rome and the devil laugh in their sleeves." Admitting that Mr. Sellon might derive this anecdote from the fountain head, the parties themselves, yet, as neither they nor he are very conspicuous for veracity, I construe the intelligence by the rule of reverse, though authenticated by the deposition of their right trusty and well-beloved cousin and counsellor.

    Once more: I am charged with "excessive superciliousness, and majesty of pride:" and why not charged with having seven heads and ten horns, and a tail as long as a bell-rope? After all, what has my pride, or my humility, to do with the argument in hand? Whether I am haughty, or meek, is of no more consequence either to that, or to the public, than whether I am tall or short: however, I am, at this very time, giving one proof, that my "majesty of pride" can stoop; that even to ventilate the impertinences of Mr. Sellon.


    Arminianism at Home in Rome

    But, however frivolous his cavils, the principles for which he contends are of the most pernicious nature and tendency. I must repeat, what already seems to have given him so much offence, that Arminianism "came from Rome, and leads thither again." Julian, bishop of Eclana a contemporary and disciple of Pelagius, was one of those who endeavoured, with much art, to gild the doctrines of that heresiarch, in order to render them more sightly and palatable. The Pelagian system, thus varnished and paliated, soon began to acquire the softer name of Semipelagianism. Let us take a view of it, as drawn to our hands by the celebrated Mr. Bower, who himself, in the main, a professed Pelagian, and therefore less likely to present us with an unfavourable portrait of the system he generally approved. Among the principles of that sect, this learned writer enumerates the following:

    "The notion of election and reprobation, independent on our merits or demerits, is maintaining a fatal necessity, is the bane of all virtue, and serves only to render good men remiss in working out their salvation, and to drive sinners to despair. "The decrees of election and reprobation are posterior to, and in consequence of, our good or evil works, as foreseen by God from all eternity."5

    Is not this too the very language of modern Arminianism? Do not the partizans of that scheme argue on the same identical terms? Should it be said, "True, this proves that Arminianism is Pelagianism revived; but it does not prove, that the doctrines of Arminianism are originally Popish:" a moment's cool attention will make it plain that they are. Let us again hear Mr. Bower, who, after the passage just quoted, immediately adds, "on these two last propositions, the Jesuits found their whole system of grace and free-will; agreeing therein with the Semipelagians, against the Jansenists and St. Augustine."6 The Jesuits were moulded into a regular body, towards the middle of the sixteenth century: toward the close of the same century, Arminius began to infest the Protestant churches. It needs therefore no great penetration, to discern from what source he drew his poison. His journey to Rome (though Monsicur Bayle affects to make light of the inferences which were at that very time deduced from it) was not for nothing. If, however, any are disposed to believe, that Arminius imbibed his doctrines from the Socinians in Poland, with whom, it is certain, he was on terms of intimate friendship, I have no objection to splitting the difference: he might import some of his tenets from the Racovian brethren, and yet be indebted, for others, to the disciples of Loyola.


    Papists and Predestination

    Certain it is, that Arminius himself was sensible, how greatly the doctrine of predestination widens the distance between Protestantism and Popery. "There is no point of doctrines (says he) which the Papists, the Anabaptists, and the (new) Lutherans more fiercely oppose, nor by means of which they heap more discredit on the reformed churches, and bring the reformed system itself into more odium; for they (i.e. the Papists, & etc.) assert, that no fouler blasphemy against God can be thought or expressed, than is contained in the doctrine of predestination."7 For which reason, he advises the reformed world to discard predestination from their creed, in order that they may live on more brotherly terms with the Papists, the Anabaptists, and such like.

    The Arminian writers make no scruple to seize and retail each other's arguments, as common property. Hence, Samuel Hoord copies from Van Harmin the self same observation which I have now cited. "Predestination (says Samuel) is an opinion odious to the Papists, opening their foul mouths, against our Church and religion:"8 consequently, our adopting the opposite doctrines of universal grace and freewill, would, by bringing us so many degrees nearer to the Papists, conduce to shut their mouths, and make them regard us, so far at least, as their own orthodox and dearly beloved brethren: whence it follows, that, as Arminianism came from Rome, so "it leads thither again."


    The Jesuits and Predestination

    If the joint verdict of Arminius himself, and of his English proselyte Hoord, will not turn the scale, let us add the testimony of a professed Jesuit, by way of making up full weight. When archbishop Laud's papers were exam- ined, a letter was found among them, thus endorsed with that prelate's own hand: "March, 1628. A Jesuit's Letter, sent to the Rector at Bruxels, about the ensuing Parliament." The design of this letter was to give the Superior of the Jesuits, then resident at Brussels, an account of the posture of civil and ecclesiastical affairs in England; an extract from it I shall here subjoin: "Father Rector, let not the damp of astonishment seize upon your ardent and zealous soul, in apprehending the sodaine and unexpected calling of a Parliament. We have now many strings to our bow. We have planted that soveraigne drugge Arminianisme, which we hope will purge the Protestants from their heresie; and it flourisheth and beares fruit in due season. For the better prevention of the Puritanes, the Arminians have already locked up the Duke's (of Buckingham) eares; and we have those of our owne religion, which stand continually at the Duke's chamber, to see who goes in and out: we cannot be too circumspect and carefull in this regard. I am, at this time, transported with joy, to see how happily all instruments and means, as well great as lesser, co-operate unto our purposes. But, to return unto the maine fabricke:--OUR FOUNDATION IS ARMINIANISME. The Arminians and projectors, as it appeares in the premises, affect mutation. This we second and enforce by probable arguments."9


    The Sovereign Drug Arminianism

    The "Sovereign drug, Arminianism," which said the Jesuit, "we (i.e. we Papists) have planted" in England, did indeed bid fair "to purge our Protestant Church effectually. How merrily Popery and Arminianism, at that time, danced hand in hand, may be learned from Tindal: "The churches were adorned with paintings, images, altar-pieces, & etc. and, instead of communion tables, alters were set up, and bowings to them and the sacramental elements enjoined. The predestinarian doctrines were forbid, not only to be preached, but to be printed; and the Arminian sense of the Articles was encouraged and propagated."10 The Jesuit, therefore, did not exult without cause. The "sovereign drug," so lately "planted," did indeed take deep root downward, and bring forth fruit upward, under the cherishing auspices of Charles and Laud. Heylyn, too, acknowledges, that the state of things was truly described by another Jesuit of that age, who wrote: "Protestantism waxeth weary of itself. The doctrine (by the Arminians, who then sat at the helm) is altered in many things, for which their progenitors forsook the Church of Rome: as limbus patrum; prayer for the dead, and possibility of keeping God's com- mandments; and the accounting of Calvinism to be heresy at least, if not treason."11


    Arminianism From the Pit

    The maintaining of these positions, by the Court divines, was an "alteration" indeed; which the abandoned Heylyn ascribes to "the ingenuity and moderation found in some professors of our religion." If we sum up the evidence that has been given, we shall find its amount to be, that Arminianism came from the Church of Rome, and leads back again to the pit whence it was digged.



  • #2
    I see no value what-so-ever in continuing to post this type of blatant hyper Calvinism, that is over 235 years old, or should I just respond with excerpts from hyper Arminianism proponents?
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    • #3
      Election is in the Bible, Stan, and I believe we are getting quite a bit of hyper-Arminianism/Pelagianism from you, as you add choice, choosing, and free will to verses where that kind of thing is not mentioned. What is wrong with the commentary being 235 years old? Same God, same Bible, but fewer winds of false doctrine in those days than there are today, which would blow a man's doctrine right off course and into Arminianism or some other false doctrine. The Canons of Dort clearly rejected Arminianism for a good reason... it's not taught in the Bible that we have free will to choose salvation, but that Jesus chooses us (John 15:16-19 KJV, Psalm 65:4 KJV). What the Bible says here is that we don't choose the Lord, but those who are chosen, He chose, and according to Revelation 13:8 KJV and 17:8 KJV from the foundation of the world. I haven't read John Calvin, so what I know comes from Scripture, not John Calvin. If he and I agree, fine, but that is not where I learned my doctrine. There is always value in being a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

      If it is not too personal, what was said to you that converted you 44 years ago?
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      • #4
        Actually it ISN'T Stratcat, which is what we've been debating.

        As I've shown on numerous occasions, John 15 is about Jesus' disciples, not everyone who WILL be saved, and Psalms are songs not statements of election. As far as Revelation 13:8 and 17:8 is concerned I've explained these a few times as well so it's no use to continue to offer them to anyone who refuses to accept the proper exegesis of them.
        Very clearly, if Jesus was born when he was then Rev 13:8 doesn't say what the KJV depicts....take a look at the following link;

        Rev 13:8 NASB;NRSV;ESV;NET;LEB - All who dwell on the earth will worship - Bible Gateway

        What you KNOW was explained to you by someone Stratcat, otherwise you would not be using the RT vernacular. I don't care to discuss ANY canons, as the ONLY written words we need is the written WORDS of God. Do you also believe in Infant Baptism? It may surprise you to know that Calvin DID, because of his RCC roots.

        I totally agree with you about 2 Tim 2:15, so once you actually start RIGHTLY dividing the word of truth you will know as I know.

        You know I really can't remember what it was in detail, other than the reality of who Jesus was for me in my life was revealed and offered and I accepted.




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        • #5
          Originally posted by Stan View Post
          I see no value what-so-ever in continuing to post this type of blatant hyper Calvinism, that is over 235 years old, or should I just respond with excerpts from hyper Arminianism proponents?
          At Christforums' Heresy Hill Arminian subforum, not only are you welcome, but also encouraged to post here Stan.

          God bless,
          William
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          • #6
            Revelation 13:8 KJV is predestination, in that the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world is explaining that the Lamb (Jesus) is to be slain for our sins, which is predetermined before man was even created. God knew that Adam and Eve would sin, cursing mankind with death, both physical and spiritual. God knew that He needed a remedy for death, that being His Son to die for our (those of us in the Lamb's Book of Life, also from the foundation of the world Revelation 17:8 KJV) sins, and not for all individuals. True the offer was made to all, so that none have any excuse, seeing nature and the eternal Godhead laid out before us, but clearly the verses I gave you and a bunch more I haven't quoted teach election, not free will.

            Do you believe one can lose their salvation? Is that what I read from you?

            Election from John 15 is taught applying to all He choses, not just the disciples. It does not imply in any way that it is for the disciples only. Psalm 65:4 KJV TEACHES as well as being song, and definitely teaches election. I will not be called a liar. I told you I haven't read about election from Calvin or anyone else, and that I got it from the Bible, and that's the truth, so don't call me a liar again.

            As for the Bible I use, that goes on a different thread if you have a problem with the KJV. I like it, so I reference my verses with "KJV" so the link gives the verses in KJV. The default is the ESV. I don't know what version you use, but save it for a different thread. This one's played out as far as I'm concerned. I had some other Arminian call me a liar like that, and he too was full of himself, conflicted, saying two opposite things at the same time, and unable to face the fact that the Bible teaches election, not free will. If I got my doctrine somewhere else, I would have told you. There is a big difference between disagreeing with one another and being called a liar, by not believing me when I said the Bible taught me of election. Before I was converted, I used to believe in free will. Atheists believe in it too because they have no belief in a god or God who says He chooses us, and that none seeks after Him.
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            • #7
              Originally posted by Stan View Post
              I don't care to discuss ANY canons, as the ONLY written words we need is the written WORDS of God.
              Yup, one of the first things an Apostate church/congregation does is rid itself of those pesky Canons, Confessions, and Creeds. As for only the need of the written Words of God, I agree and encourage you to stop writing/posting anything but Scripture. The moment you decide to actually express yourself in belief or otherwise, you should note the church's position with respect to orthodoxy and how you differ.

              Do you also believe in Infant Baptism? It may surprise you to know that Calvin DID, because of his RCC roots
              :eek:

              God bless,
              William
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              • #8
                That's a pretty condescending response William. Do you believe the Bible needs clarifying by a man-made creed, confession or canon?

                Yes a lot of people don't know this, but it's in his writings.
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                • #9
                  Originally posted by William View Post

                  At Christforums' Heresy Hill Arminian subforum, not only are you welcome to, but also encouraged to post here Stan.

                  God bless,
                  William
                  I didn't feel I wasn't based on the thread name...just though the content itself was a bit over board, but "when in Rome" I guess.
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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Stan View Post
                    That's a pretty condescending response William. Do you believe the Bible needs clarifying by a man-made creed, confession or canon?

                    Yes a lot of people don't know this, but it's in his writings.
                    No, I believe we do.

                    As to your accusation of an early Reformer following RCC tradition rather than Sola Scriptura, I suggest you educate yourself on the differences of baptizing infants between the Reformed and RCC positions with regard to Baptismal Regeneration.

                    Originally posted by Stan View Post

                    I didn't feel I wasn't based on the thread name...just though the content itself was a bit over board, but "when in Rome" I guess.
                    That's good, because despite our differences I do not want you to feel as though you're not welcome here to discuss, dialogue, debate, and fellowship with members.

                    God bless,
                    William
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Stratcat View Post
                      Revelation 13:8 KJV is predestination, in that the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world is explaining that the Lamb (Jesus) is to be slain for our sins, which is predetermined before man was even created. God knew that Adam and Eve would sin, cursing mankind with death, both physical and spiritual. God knew that He needed a remedy for death, that being His Son to die for our (those of us in the Lamb's Book of Life, also from the foundation of the world Revelation 17:8 KJV) sins, and not for all individuals. True the offer was made to all, so that none have any excuse, seeing nature and the eternal Godhead laid out before us, but clearly the verses I gave you and a bunch more I haven't quoted teach election, not free will.
                      No it's not, it's a bad interpretation of the Greek, as I've shown you by the versions I linked to. Again, ignoring my direct responses by indirect answers, is NOT conducive to productive debate.

                      Originally posted by Stratcat View Post
                      Do you believe one can lose their salvation? Is that what I read from you?
                      Was it not clear what I wrote Stratcat? Why not quote my response instead of prevaricating?

                      Originally posted by Stratcat View Post
                      Election from John 15 is taught applying to all He choses, not just the disciples. It does not imply in any way that it is for the disciples only.
                      WHO teaches that? YOU? RT? Because in proper hermeneutical exegesis, the Bible does NOT teach that. Jesus is addressing and speaking directly to His Apostles/Disciples. We may be able to find application from Jesus' words in our lives, but NOT doctrinal position when it is NOT for all.

                      Originally posted by Stratcat View Post
                      Psalm 65:4 KJV TEACHES as well as being song, and definitely teaches election. I will not be called a liar. I told you I haven't read about election from Calvin or anyone else, and that I got it from the Bible, and that's the truth, so don't call me a liar again.
                      I didn't call you a liar, so stop accusing me of something I didn't do and stop being so violently defensive. This MO of yours in NOT quote what I actually say, then prevaricating about what I did say is rather tiresome but typical of those who can't directly defend their opinions. Show me how Psalm 65:4 teaches election? What was God choosing David or anyone here for? To dwell in His courts? Where are they and how does that state 'election' ? I see this site has really not changed much from when I was here in it's previous incarnation. You're still the same hothead.

                      Originally posted by Stratcat View Post
                      As for the Bible I use, that goes on a different thread if you have a problem with the KJV. I like it, so I reference my verses with "KJV" so the link gives the verses in KJV. The default is the ESV. I don't know what version you use, but save it for a different thread. This one's played out as far as I'm concerned. I had some other Arminian call me a liar like that, and he too was full of himself, conflicted, saying two opposite things at the same time, and unable to face the fact that the Bible teaches election, not free will. If I got my doctrine somewhere else, I would have told you. There is a big difference between disagreeing with one another and being called a liar, by not believing me when I said the Bible taught me of election. Before I was converted, I used to believe in free will. Atheists believe in it too because they have no belief in a god or God who says He chooses us, and that none seeks after Him.
                      The point is you make decisions based not on what the Greek says but what a 400+ year old English translations says. If you're really interested in getting to the truth, you'll use many translations to get to the truth, but if you're only interested in spouting Calvinism, then you'll only use the version Calvin used, which was NOT the KJV.
                      Your supercilious nature comes across pretty well whenever you start to try and defend your RT views, and ultimately ends up in false accusations and charges.
                      Before you were converted from what? Choosing who would be Christ's disciples based on His foreknowledge and choosing who God saves are not quite the same thing but apparently closed minded people, who REACT to the light of scripture, never see that? If none actually seek after Him, then why does Jesus tell us to seek? Matt 7:7.









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                      • #12
                        I do check the Hebrew and Greek. You were banned before, you then badmouthed this site on FB, and by admin's grace, you are allowed back. Your ignorance in Spiritual matters is exceeded by your arrogance. You can't communicate in a reasonable debate... either one agrees with you or they don't know what they're talking about in your head. You are in pseudo-intellectual denial. I'm through wasting my time with you. I tried to help and got nothing but condescending insults. Pride goeth before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall. Click!
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                        • #13
                          Apparently not or you would know the KJV is wrong and as you ignore all my requests to explain how the lamb could die before He was even born, the obvious problem is your cognitive dissonance. I wasn't banned, I left and it deserved to be bad mouthed based on YOUR actions. Obviously the admin realized the issue which is why I was invited back. I came back now only because I thought this was a new site, not a rehash of the same problematic attitudes. YOU can't discuss, all you can do is opine from ignorance and then get nasty and vehement when you fail.
                          Sadly if William continues to let you contribute in this vitriolic fashion, this version will die the same death the last one did.
                          You don't help Stratcat, you dictate and dictators have no place in a Christian website striving for viability and recognition. If I can I'm putting you on ignore now.
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                          • #14
                            Lemme remind you both to use the private messaging system for further personal grievances.

                            God bless,
                            William
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                            • #15
                              As there does not seem to be an "Ignore facility" on this site, I'll try to ignore his posts.
                              Thanks
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