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Arminian - or Arminian-ish?

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There is no doubt about it. Arminianism is gross heresy. It is gross because it is as far from genuine salvation as you can get. It is heresy because it does not proclaim the real article – salvation as a free gift given to those who were chosen before the world began.

Though many try to argue with us about this, it is not our argument! If God gives us definitions and conditions, then we must comply. If people do not, it is hardly our problem… we can do nothing to make others comply with God’s commands.

For this reason we are uncompromising about Arminianism as a teaching, and with true Arminianist teachers, for they are wolves in sheep’s clothing who dishonour and reject God’s word. However, certain observations need to be made about Arminianists…

Are You Really Arminian, or just Arminian-ish?

When you get right down to it, it makes no difference to God’s Gospel or to His word, if people are Arminianist. What I mean, is that because it is God Who saves, and all who are chosen to be saved will be saved, no matter what happens, people who teach and preach Arminianism make no difference at all to the ‘total head count’ of those who are saved.

Not that many people are truly Arminian. Most are Arminian-ish. They listen to Arminian-style preachers. They read Arminian-type publications. They respond to theological issues emotionally and piecemeal rather than on the basis of God’s truth. Some of these people are Christians and are the recipients of Gospel blessings. But, they have no idea about their claimed beliefs. They have been misled, in one way or another. That is why all who claim Arminian beliefs should be given an opportunity to consider the truth. Including those who favour the Alpha Course.

In my ministry I have very tough words to say about those who know their message is fake, yet they deliberately persuade others to follow. It is these who have my hardest words and to whom they are directed. Genuine believers who read such words will think hard, and then change. Not because I say so, but because my words are from an holy God, and He will ensure that real Christians will take stock and repent. Those who are die-hard unbelievers or who have been seduced by Satan to the ‘nth’ degree, will persist in their sinful beliefs and teachings.

So, which type are you? Are you a die-hard Arminian who deliberately misleads and deceives? Or, are you Arminian in name only because you did not realise it is founded on Roman Catholic heresy?

Why does it make a difference?

Well, Paul says that he delivered the Gospel given to him by God. He says that anyone who preaches anything else, even angels from heaven, are anathema – cursed by God and abandoned to their fate, hell.

This is why I oppose the Alpha Course with all my might. It is NOT just another way of reaching the lost. It is an Arminian gospel, anathema! It says many correct things, but at the vital point of the Gospel, it is not just deficient, it is in direct opposition. (If you want to read where Arminianism came from, read my book examining the theology of Thomas Aquinas).

The same questions can be asked of Alpha adherents, even if they have been on a course and thought it was ‘great’. Many a lie is borne on the wings of cultish teaching, and Satan can often be an angel of light. The whole point of deception is that it – deceives! I take no delight in warning those who are deceived, but I am compelled to do it, firstly for the sake of the glory of the Lord, and secondly for the sake of those deceived, that they may think hard and come away from what deceives them.

The Alpha Course in its current form was written by the leading proponent of the Toronto Blessing in the UK. That is enough to warn any right-thinking Christian. Another thing that ought to warn them is the Roman Catholic acceptance of the Course… Rome never accepts or endorses anything unless it benefits their own agenda. A reading of the main book of Alpha throws up countless errors and heresies. And any genuine believer will listen to warnings. I will never apologise for speaking hard words about Alpha. Nowhere in scripture do we find the Lord speaking softly about heresy and ungodly teachings!

As a Christian ministry we often have to present arguments in a general sense, to cover the common incidences of a matter. Arminianism is now rife amongst the churches, so that is why we oppose it. The Alpha Course is part of this widespread error. I recognise that many ordinary folks are deceived. They have placed trust in their ‘leaders’, who have let them down. Many of the leaders are themselves deceived and look only to the ‘results’, which are the results of excellent marketing, not of God’s movement! Alpha is one of the best marketing successes in the world today! But, it is certainly not the Gospel.

Are you, then, a true Arminian? Or, are you just Arminian on paper? The difference is vast and will determine how you respond to godly warnings. They are hard words, not harsh. They do not mean the writer is without compassion or love for the brethren. On the other hand, I will not compromise.

© February 1995

Published on www.christiandoctrine.com

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