Cassian and Semi-Pelagianism--Part II, No. 5
The Life of Augustine: His Influence: Chapter V
CASSIAN AND SEMI-PELAGIANISM
Text:" "Salvation is of the Lord." --Jonah 2:9
Merle DíAubigne: "Salvation considered as coming from man is the creating principle of all error and abuse."
When Cassian homogenized the Biblical position of Augustine with the philosophical position of Pelagius, he raised up the Goliath that would lay the foundation of Roman Catholic theology. He mixed SOME truth with MUCH error, and how many would he so discerning as to discard ALL?
In brief, Cassian declared the reality of Original Sin and Corruption, but he denied that the condition of man was one of HOPELESSNESS. Although the Apostle Paul plainly declared mankind was in a position by nature of "HAVING NO HOPE", Cassian modified this statement found in Ephesians 2:12, by saying in the matter of salvation, man has the NATURAL ABILITY to make the first step! He went further to say that the taking of this "first step" actually MERITS the help of God!
In the third place, Cassian declared God wishes and helps ALL to be saved. Thus he believed in UNIVERSAL GRACE --or, that there is GRACE for ALL. The Bible plainly teaches there is grace only for those who "COME."
Fourthly, he taught that it was our will that determines our acceptance or our rejection of salvation. The final decision is dependent upon the exercise of our FREE WILL.
Cassian summarized this part of his theology by saying, "Ours is to be willing Godís is to help."
The second principle doctrine Cassian taught was that sinlessness was attainable by good works. NOTE: The first error naturally led to the second, because all who would place salvation in the hands of men, must also place their sanctification likewise in their own hands.
What actually did Cassian do? First, he removed salvation from the hands of God as did Pelagius and he placed it in the hands of men Ėand if in the hands of men, then men must also labor at the preservation of it!
SUNDAY MORNING, AUGUST 22, WE RESIGNED AS PASTOR OF THE HARPER MEMORIAL BIBLE CHURCH WHERE WE SERVED OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST FOR THE PAST 8 1/2 YEARS. BRETHREN, PRAY FOR US.
"0 FOOLISH GALATIANS," the Apostle Paul wrote, "WHO hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the TRUTH, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you? This only would I learn of you, íReceived ye the Spirit by the works of the
law, or by the hearing of faith?í Are ye SO FOOLISH? Having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?" --Galatians 3:1-3
When Cassian removed salvation to the hands of men, he also gave birth to the "Sacrament of Penance," in the Roman Catholic Church. By the 11th century, the city streets in Roman Catholic countries resounded with the cries and groans of scores of people who would tie an apron around their waists in the dead of winter and whip themselves without mercy.
Forty editions of taxes known as "Indulgences" were issued. It was said that when this money was paid into the treasury of Rome by tinkling as it fell into the box that it ransomed a soul from suffering in Purgatory. This was the fruit of Cassianís gospel. As he prostituted the Gospel of God, he cheapened the grace of God for is it possible that a deed can be good unless it be mixed with faith? "But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him." --Hebrews 11:6
Who would believe that after Cassianís Semi-Pelagianism was formerly condemned by the Council of Orange which convened in the year 529 at which time it was repudiated as unscriptural--who would believe it actually continued for 1000 years more! AND that after it was threatened with near-complete repudiation by the Reformation, it was again resurrected by yet another son of Anak and has actually continued with us to the present time! Men have looked for the Babylon of the Scriptures, the "Mother of Harlots", and who is "drunk with the blood of the saints", to be a literal city; but might not this Demon-inspired system of doctrine in fact be the "Mystery of Babylon?" We have traced the seeds of Cassianís thoughts to the tenets held by Pelagius, and have seen that Pelagius gleaned them from the paganism of Rome. Did not Rome glean them from Greece who learned them from Persia ---and did not all pagan religious systems have their beginning in the city of Babylon, the cradle of civilization?
Therefore, in the next edition of THE ANGELUS we will take a closer look at these doctrinal tenets of Cassianís Semi-Pelagianism.
Six months ago, the United States Postal Service charged us 10Ę for an address change. In August, the price went up to $.25! In three days after mailing, we had 10 changes! This actually raised our postage by 50%. If you know you are moving, or of someone who receives THE ANGELUS, please inform us of their change of address.
MANY THANKS to Brother Jim Oates, Pastor of the Bible Baptist Church, Deans Bridge Road here in Augusta for his gracious attitude in permitting us to use his typewriter to do THE ANGELUS these past two years.
Pastor John Robinson and his congregation fled the persecutions of James I and found asylum first in Amsterdam, and then in Leyden, Holland. Part of his flock emigrated to Massachusetts and began the Plymouth colony, December 1620.
Before they set sail, Pastor Robinson gave them his benediction by reading Psalm 120.
"In my distress I cried unto the Lord and He heard me. Deliver my soul, O Lord, from lying lips, and from a deceitful tongue. What shall be given unto thee? or what shall be done unto thee, thou false tongue? Sharp arrows of the mighty, with coals of juniper. Woe is me, that I sojourn in Mesech, that I dwell in the tents of Kedar! My soul hath long dwelt with him that hateth peace. I am for peace: but when I speak they are for war."