The Wayfarer's Creed

My Semi-Pelagian Views

Posted on: 3 November 2008

Note from your Blog Host:  Apparently I wrote this post over a year ago in June 2007 and for some reason I never published it.  I don’t see any reason to keep this off the Web so here it is.

So Hearty invited everybody to take a quiz on what heresy your viewpoints fit best with.  Here are my results:

  • Pelagianism-92%
  • Chalcedon compliant-83%
  • Apollanarian-50%
  • Nestorianism-42%
  • Monophysitism-42%
  • Modalism-25%
  • Gnosticism-25%
  • Adoptionist-17%
  • Monarchianism-8%
  • Socinianism-8%
  • Arianism-8%
  • Donatism-0%
  • Albigensianism-0%
  • Docetism-0%

So since my particular heresy is Pelagianism, I thought I would try to spell out what exactly leads to this conclusion in a silly little quiz, because it did actually draw out the idea that I have some unorthodox viewpoints on the key matter of Pelagian thought, original sin.  Pelagius taught that there is in fact no original sin.  There is no taint on our human natures that is derived from the sin of Adam (and Eve), and thus it is possible for an individual to live without sin due to their own initiative.  I’ll state here right out, I don’t believe that.  But what do I believe?  Well, let’s see if I can adequately explain.

I think that a good place to start on this would be what initially caused me to question the idea of Original Sin.  If all of humanity has inherited sin as part of their human nature, how is it that Jesus of Nazareth, being fully human, was without sin. Asking this question I often get told “but he was fully God, as well.”  I think that is completely skirting the question.  Our doctrines, as we currently teach them, state that all humans have sinned.  Jesus was human, with a full royal lineage spelled out in the Scriptures all the way back to our father and mother in the Garden.  If I have inherited sin as a descendant of Adam and Eve, Jesus Christ must have as well.  But if one accepts the validity of the Deity of Christ, that is just not possible to accept. God cannot be sinful.  I hereby deny the doctrine of Original Sin.

I do not, however, deny the fact that all other humans have sinned.  Jesus Christ was the only human being to ever live his entire life without sin.  All others have, and all others will.

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1 Response to "My Semi-Pelagian Views"

Drew,

God to see you are back writing again. If you deny original sin for Jesus, I am afraid you have to deny it for all humans, for the reason you stted above

There are other ways out of your conundrum that you might want to consider, including extending the divine nature of Christ to include all of humanity. That is my view: we are all sons of God. We all have the same divine spark that Jesus had. And, with the proper level of spiritual commitment and spiritual development, we can do the same sorts of miracles that Jesus did.

I have been exploring the various ancient Christian heresies on my new blog, The Treshing Floor [http://jbotscharow.com]. I have some posts on Pelagianism as well as original sin that you might find interesing.

Peace!

John

BTW, we are all heretics of one sort or another. We all have deviated from the original message of Jesus.

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