Paul had to defend his preaching continually. Not because he was doing anything wrong, but because his critics wanted to subvert his ministry with their own ideas of what truth is. All genuine ministers have to do this at times, and the more public the ministry is the more often he has to do it! And I should know! If I am shown to be wrong in anything I admit to it.
Usually I get sent reams of texts centred on ‘love’, but critics never seem to understand what the texts really mean, or what they refer to. In particular, I receive complaints that I am ‘unloving’ and ‘arrogant’ for speaking in hard terms to, or about, Arminians. (There is a difference between ‘hard’ and ‘harsh’, but few critics understand this, either). Am I being unloving and arrogant?
Arminianism is not just another option. It is not an ‘alternative’ Christian belief. It is not the result of the true Gospel of Jesus Christ. There are no alternatives to the Gospel and no alternative beliefs. There is only one God, one Saviour, one Gospel, and one belief. Anything other than these is cursed. (Galatians 1:6 on).
If what people preach is not the authentic Gospel, then what they preach and believe is NOT scriptural: “Which is not another”. The people who believe and teach this false gospel “trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ”.
It does not matter WHO the preacher is, whether a man or an angel: “let him be accursed”. Note that there is no mention of showing love towards such fakes, nor is Paul accused of ‘arrogance’ for saying it. It is the truth!
Yes, I could accept the false claim that Arminians are my brethren, though scripture says otherwise. Yes, I could speak to them in soft tones, though God does not. But, die-hard Arminians are NOT MY BRETHREN, because they are unsaved.
Many in our churches today are ‘Arminian’ only because they have been deluded by silver-tongued preachers and teachers. But, others are true Arminians by choice. They have looked at the truth and denied it, preferring their own ideas and universalism, which is heresy. They boldly state that they will not believe the truth that Christ died only for the elect. They boldly claim they can choose Christ for themselves, even though scripture says that no man wants God, because he is dead in sins. That is why his spirit must be regenerated before he can come to salvation. So – who is being arrogant? And where in scripture are we told to respect wicked men? And for myself, I will not waste my time debating truth with heretics. It is my task to simply state the Bible case. I do not care to discuss any other human scheme.
True Arminianism is of Satan. He sends out deluded souls to preach his false gospel, so that men and women are detracted from God’s word. Arminianism is a blasphemy for it scorns the truth of salvation and God’s total sovereignty, and replaces God with Satan. As a false gospel, the Arminian ‘gospel’ is accursed (verse 9). The word for accursed is ‘anathema’ which, in this text, means ‘without hope of redemption’ or a person doomed to destruction. Why, then, should I wish to discuss ‘alternatives’ with such a one, when God has given him over to anathema?
Nor is it arrogant to oppose such people, who deceive themselves and others, or for me to claim that what I preach is truth, but their preaching is not. People who are ‘Arminian’ only because they know no better are more tolerable, for they are simply badly taught. But, those who insist on Arminianism, along with all its falsities, and hold to it boldly, calling true preachers ‘harsh’, or ‘unloving’, are to be resisted fully. For these I reserve hard (not harsh) words, for that is how God treats them. They are spreading malicious lies, replacing the true Gospel with a Satanic ploy.
It is not up to me to make things palatable for such men. It is up to them to be subdued and to fall on their faces before Almighty God! This requires tough talk from truth-tellers, not soft approaches that confirm the Arminian in his lies. To speak softly to them is to portray them as equals, when they are not, and to give them credibility, when they have none. The true Arminian is not my brother, but a liar and a fraud. He must be shown for what he is, a devil’s advocate. It is no coincidence that Arminianism arose from a Romanist plot to detract men from the Gospel!
I approach all men gently at first. Whilst I honestly attempt to speak gently, it is their defiance and response that will cause me to oppose them stridently. If their only wish is to prove me wrong and keep to their heresy (which is what most do), then I will not waste time with soft words, and will rebuke them immediately. I have no time to waste on works of darkness.
Those who wish to learn the truth are welcomed. If, however, they continue to veer towards Arminianism and Satan’s falsity, we will part company… but I always warn and rebuke them beforehand. A soft approach will merely establish them in their sin, whereas a rebuke, like the law, will draw them up short and, hopefully, speak to their souls. It is not up to me to be their conscience or to regenerate their spirits if they are unsaved, or to convince them if they are going astray. My rebuke to them is my duty and, indeed, love. It is then up to the Holy Spirit to convince those who are elect before time began. Or, conversely, to allow heretics to dig themselves deeper into their self-made pit. (See other articles explaining the depth of Arminian error).
So, do not expect a soft approach if you are a true Arminian, for you are judged anathema by the Lord of the Gospel. It is a fallacy that we must always approach people softly, ‘just in case’ we may win them over. In scriptural truth, we are to speak with authority for Christ and against error. If this is ‘unloving’ or ‘arrogant’, then perhaps critics ought to complain to the Lord for His attitude, Whose way I follow. The modern cult of ‘all love’ is an error in itself and leads only to more error.
© June 2009
Published on www.christiandoctrine.com
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