Difference classical arminianism and modern arminianism ?

Discussion in 'Calvinism & The Doctrines of Grace' started by Mayflower, Aug 5, 2008.

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  1. Mayflower

    Mayflower Puritan Board Junior

    Is there a Difference between the classical arminianism and modern arminianism ?

    If so, can any explain this.

  2. Jimmy the Greek

    Jimmy the Greek Puritan Board Senior

    There’s a book by Roger Olson, Arminian Theology: Myth and Realities (IVP, 2006). I haven’t read it, but it is has been heralded as a definitive justification of Arminianism as a legitimate evangelical theology — supposedly answering the mean-spirited and ill-founded charge of “Semi-Pelagian” by Calvinists. I’ll share what I heard, you can check it out yourself.

    In this book, Olson says that claiming Arminianism to be essentially Semi-Pelagian is wrong. He contends that poor old Jacob Arminius has been misunderstood and libeled by Calvinist theologians past and present. He maintains that the teachings of Arminius, while suggesting a departure from the Belgic Confession, were completely evangelical and rooted in the principles of the Reformation. In doing so, he attempts to distinguish between Arminianism-of-the-heart and Arminianism-of-the-head.

    For Olson, Arminianism-of-the-heart (a la Arminius, Wesley, and himself) = legitimate "evangelical synergism." While Arminianism-of-the-head = modern Pelagian humanistic synergism. But in my mind it's just a shell game trying to distinguish between an "evangelical" synergism and a naturalistic synergism.
  3. Poimen

    Poimen Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    Honestly Ralph I wouldn't even try (though I appreciate Jim's post above). The reason is that there is little or no confessional hegemony amongst Arminians. Did they ever write a confession other than the 5 articles of Remonstrance? I ask out loud because I do not know for certain but I suspect not.

    The Arminian party and their doctrines were clearly rooted in medieval Roman Catholicism not in Protestant or Reformed theology since their doctrines were dismissed by the larger Reformed body of the 17th century. Furthermore there were differences amongst themselves at the time (just think of Grotius' view of the atonement).

    Today a definition could include, as far as the followers go, an outright Pelagian or someone who holds to the necessity of prevenient grace for conversion.
  4. DMcFadden

    DMcFadden Puritan Board Doctor

    The internet is full of charts differentiating classical Calvinism and Arminianism (e.g. TULIP Calvinism Compared to Wesleyan Perspectives). However, an anecdotal example might highlight the difference between either of them and arminianism so-called today. Contra Roger Olson, for example, today's "Arminians" include "open theists" like Pinnock and Sanders. Both classical Arminians and Calvinists held to a traditional view of God despite their differences over the points of remonstrance.
  5. cih1355

    cih1355 Puritan Board Junior

    Classical Arminianism is represented by Arminius himself.

    There are differences of belief among modern Arminians so which modern Arminian do you want to compare with Arminius? Modern Arminians would include the Free Will Baptists, Wesleyans, Pentecostals, Dave Hunt, and the like.
  6. Jimmy the Greek

    Jimmy the Greek Puritan Board Senior

    I agree. My point in referencing Olson's book is that he sees Arminius (and classic Arminianism) as more biblical than many of today's theologically challenged Arminians. However, contrary to Olsen, I see Wesley as departing from Arminius and today's Semi-Pelagian Arminians as worse than both -- not to mention the Arminian Open Theists (Ughh).

  7. Ricardus

    Ricardus Puritan Board Freshman

    Arminianism has its roots in the Jesuit theology of middle knowledge or scientia media promulgated by Luis de Molina and Suarez. I find it deliciously ironic that much of modern evangelicalism is based on Jesuit middle knowledge!
  8. cih1355

    cih1355 Puritan Board Junior

    That reminds me. William Lane Craig advocates Molinism.
  9. Neogillist

    Neogillist Puritan Board Freshman

    You should check out this thread: http://www.puritanboard.com/f48/five-different-strains-arminianism-today-27834/

    I have identified five different strains of Arminianism, without counting those of the Roman Catholic brand like molinism. For instance, most Baptists are Dispensational Arminians (like Dave Hunt) who hold to "once saved always saved" and thus tend towards antinomianism, while Old Wesleyans (Methodists) were more legalistic in their approach.
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