Shaykh Muhammad Abdul-Wahhaab Al-Banna said, “There is a difference between a caller to heresy (innovation): who is followed by the people and beguiled by him, and between the one who (unintentionally) falls into heresy.
As for the second (case) we clarify (the truth) to him, so if he repents and returns (to the truth) then this is good, and if he remains upon heresy (innovation) then he is to be warned against.
Hence Imam Ahmad when it was said to him, “So and so accompanies so and so, he (is known to be a) heretic (innovator), so should we declare him an innovator?”
He said, “No, not until you clarify (the truth) to him.”
So if he leaves (falsehood) and if he does not then consider himself one of them and it is possible to see from the statements of the (Pious) Predecessors (Salaf us-Saalih) similar to this, from the Companions and the Successors (Tabi’een) (then this person is not considered a hertic (innovator).”
[Also Shaykh Muhammad Abdul-Wahhaab al-Banna said we warn against hertics (innovators) by name and against their manhaj (methodology)] “When they call to heresy (innovation).”
Ref: Masaai’l al-Mahajiyyah, p. 4
Translator: Taalib Alexander (and slightly modified by Ahlusunnahwaljamaah.com for easier reading)
Posted by Abdul Kareem Ibn Ozzie