The core question to Universalists

Discussion in 'Philosophy and Theology' started by anglican74, Apr 14, 2018.

  1. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    791
    Likes Received:
    643
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican (ACNA)
    In my time here, I have seen one or two people here engage in an apologetic of universalism ("universal salvation", and thus the nonexistence of Hell)

    Unlike other problematic statements, universalism was promoted by a few church fathers and so there's a slight merit to it, and I want to engage with the question itself... Pope Francis was recently seen to deny hell and advocate something like universalism in the Catholic world, and a clever article was written to rebut him, and when it came across my screen I'd found it fascinating!
    https://remnantnewspaper.com/web/in...8-zeno-s-papacy-and-the-sherlock-holmes-axiom

    The core of the article is actually very simple,.. if there is no Hell, then there was no need for the whole Resurrection and Jesus dying business after all!

    If you are a universalist, how would you respond?
     
  2. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    2,053
    Likes Received:
    1,832
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    American Anglican
    Universalists like myself believe in hell, which I've taken pains to explain on a number of occasions so I can't really answer the question.
     
    PotterMcKinney likes this.
  3. Philip Barrington

    Philip Barrington Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    665
    Likes Received:
    863
    Country:
    Australia
    Religion:
    Anglican
    Can you have free will if there is no hell?

    Are there any wrong answers?

    Do I believe God forces people where they do not want to go?

    Why did God not just put a fence around the apple tree?

    I don't mind if there is no-one in hell ultimately but I don't think people will be in heaven against their will.
     
  4. PotterMcKinney

    PotterMcKinney Active Member Typist Anglican

    Posts:
    311
    Likes Received:
    188
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    PECUSA
    Universalism is not the postulation that hell does not exist, or a denial of Jesus' work. It is a postulation of the eventual end of hell. Nor does it deny the work of Jesus; it is only by that work that anyone is saved, whether it be a few or everyone in the end.
     
  5. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    791
    Likes Received:
    643
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican (ACNA)
    Would universalists say that without Jesus the whole world would go to Hell for all eternity?
     
    Lowly Layman likes this.
  6. JayEhm

    JayEhm Member

    Posts:
    90
    Likes Received:
    30
    Country:
    Canada
    Religion:
    Orthodox Protestant
    I'm just a simple man who reads the English Bible, "For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins." To me it seems as if Christ died only for 'many' and not all. The covenant promised in Genesis 3 and restated throughout the scriptures, that had been instituted by Christ in His own blood, is said to be for "many." In John 17 Christ prays for the church and not the world. If God desires the salvation of every single individual why did Christ not die for every single person? Why was Christ sent to save His people only? How is someone saved outside of Christ's sacrifice and prayer?

    Yours in the Lord,

    jay
    PS: We know the "son of perdition" was lost to fulfill scripture, he was lost on purpose. John 17.12
     
  7. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    2,053
    Likes Received:
    1,832
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    American Anglican
    Yes. I would.
     
  8. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    2,053
    Likes Received:
    1,832
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    American Anglican
    Jay when I read my bible I read this.

    John 12:32
    "when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw ALL men to myself."

    John 12:47
    “As for the person who hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge him. For I did not come to judge the WORLD, but to SAVE IT.

    John 3:17
    "For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save THE WORLD through him."

    Luke 3:6 "And ALL mankind will see God’s salvation."

    Matthew 18:14 "In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that ANY of these little ones should be lost."

    Romans 5:18
    "Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for ALL men."

    Romans 8:32
    "He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us ALL—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?"

    Romans 11:32
    "For God has bound all men over to disobedience so that he may have mercy on them ALL."

    1 John 2:2
    "He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the WHOLE WORLD."

    1 Timothy 2
    "This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants ALL men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for ALL men"

    1 Timothy 4
    "This is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance (and for this we labor and strive), that we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of ALL men"

    Colossians 1:19-20
    "For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself ALL things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross."

    1 Corinthians 15
    "For as in Adam all die, so in Christ ALL will be made alive."

    John 17:2
    "For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to ALL those you have given him."

    Matthew 13:33
    "He told them still another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into a large amount of flour until it worked ALL THROUGH the dough.”

    Ephesians 1:9-10
    "And he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment—to bring ALL things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ."

    Philippians 2:9-11
    "Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus EVERY knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and EVERY tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."

    Romans 8:38-39
    "For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor ANYTHING else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    2 Corinthians 5:18-19
    "All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling THE WORLD to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them."

    A simple reading leads me to universalism.
     
    Anglican04 likes this.
  9. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    791
    Likes Received:
    643
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican (ACNA)
    And if someone never accepts Jesus, in this life or the next... will they go to hell?
     
  10. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    2,053
    Likes Received:
    1,832
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    American Anglican
    ...never?...in this life or the next? the bible declares such a thing an impossibility. "For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God." some translations say "give praise to God".
     
  11. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    2,053
    Likes Received:
    1,832
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    American Anglican
    But an unrepentant sinner will face the consequences of his sin, the purifying fire of God's wrath. As William Law said: " if long and long ages of fiery pain, and tormenting darkness, fall to the share of many, or most of God's apostate creatures, they will last no longer, than till the great fire of God has melted all arrogance into humility, and all that is SELF has died in the long agonies and bloody sweat of a lost God, which is that all-saving cross of Christ, which will never give up its redeeming power, till sin and sinners have no more a name among the creatures of God."
     
  12. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    791
    Likes Received:
    643
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican (ACNA)
    What does this mean, and where has this been taught by anyone prior to William Law?...
     
  13. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    2,053
    Likes Received:
    1,832
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    American Anglican
    It means that there is to be an end to punishment and it was taught by many church fathers.
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2018
  14. JayEhm

    JayEhm Member

    Posts:
    90
    Likes Received:
    30
    Country:
    Canada
    Religion:
    Orthodox Protestant

    Then please allow me to help you out. As I have done in my post above, I gave some context, not a lot, but enough to give a reason behind the conclusions I’ve drawn. What you have done, I’m afraid to say, is called ‘proof texting.’


    Let’s take a look…



    Draw all men in judgement - not for salvation. Context is important. Not all have faith and therefore not all are drawn to Christ for salvation for we read in v.31 “Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.”



    You have merged the First and Second Coming into one. During the First Coming Christ came as a suffering servant and not a Judge, when He returns again, it will be in Judgement. Also called the Final Judgement or Great White Throne Judgement. To say Christ is not going to pass judgement on sinners is to ignore entire books of the Bible.


    For the Reader, consider the point of Revelation…it’s all about Judgement!



    Flesh this out, show a context for universalism.



    This is a big issue. The Father in Heaven doesn’t want to loose any but Christ only died for “many.”


    It seems my post was missed so I’ll quote it:


    For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins." To me it seems as if Christ died only for 'many' and not all. The covenant promised in Genesis 3 and restated throughout the scriptures, that had been instituted by Christ in His own blood, is said to be for "many." In John 17 Christ prays for the church and not the world. If God desires the salvation of every single individual why did Christ not die for every single person? Why was Christ sent to save His people only? How is someone saved outside of Christ's sacrifice and prayer?



    This passage is speaking about the active disobedience of Adam resulting in death and the active obedience of Christ to the moral Law resulting in life. (v. 17) The passage doesn’t actually teach universalism because there is no reference to eternal life.


    v.18 “Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.”


    In verse 18 we see universalism undone. Again, we see that through Christ’s active obedience “shall many be made righteous” not all.



    Who is “us” in this passage? Romans was written to believers…so the “us” would be believers. Christ dies for “us” all.



    Before we arrive at Romans 11, Paul already distinguished “vessels of wrath fitted to destruction” and “vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory…”


    Universalists have a problem with context.


    Romans 11:31 “For as ye in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief: 31 Even so have these also now not believed, that through your mercy they also may obtain mercy. 32 For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all.”


    Who is the “ye” in this passage. Believers. Who are the ones who have “obtained mercy through (Israel’s) unbelief?” In context, it is Gentile Christians living in Rome. So the “all” would be those who were not apart of the Mosaic Covenant. As Paul has already pointed out, “vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory…”



    Again, context, “all men” is a scriptural reference to Gentiles, who scripture called “the world, the whole world, and every creature” Rom. 11:12, 15; 1 John 2:2; Mark 16:15


    This is also why the Jews being address in 1 Tim. 2:1 had to be told to pray for all people, Gentiles and Jews, as it was not apart of their custom to do so.



    Yes, “all men in Adam” died because Adam was our federal head. This is a very easy point to understand. Let’s look at the context: “17 And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. 18 Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished.” What is it that unites us with Christ? Faith. Those without faith perish. So, those by faith “in Christ all will be made alive.”


    Context, context, context.



    Flesh it out. Explain how this verse means proves the universal salvation of all individuals who ever lived.



    No mention of salvation in this passage, only the Lordship of Christ and His subduing of the created world.



    Yes, nothing can separate believers from the love of God. You have read into each and every single passage quoted your pet doctrine – universalism. Unless you can demonstrate Paul is referring to unbelievers in this passage?

    The direct context is for "them that love God."

    "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."



    I hope that was useful.


    Yours in the Lord,


    jay
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2018
  15. JayEhm

    JayEhm Member

    Posts:
    90
    Likes Received:
    30
    Country:
    Canada
    Religion:
    Orthodox Protestant

    William Law was a Gnostic and follower of Jacob Boehme. His works are online here.
     
  16. JayEhm

    JayEhm Member

    Posts:
    90
    Likes Received:
    30
    Country:
    Canada
    Religion:
    Orthodox Protestant
    "Some" church fathers taught error.

    Do you believe what Papias taught concerning Judas Iscariot? He taught that Judas did not die by hanging and ‘his genitals appeared entirely disfigured?’ It seems Eusebius held the writings of Papias in ‘low esteem’ because of his strange views. (Papias of Hierapolis – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

    We shouldn't believe everything the ECF's taught. Test it with scripture.
     
  17. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    2,053
    Likes Received:
    1,832
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    American Anglican
    I did. See list of scripture verses above.

    I am quite familiar with William Law. I have read all his works. He was not a Gnostic.
     
  18. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    791
    Likes Received:
    643
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican (ACNA)
    I am not asking whether some will see an end to punishment... That to me is a separate question

    I am asking you to substantiate Law's argument that even the unrepentant sinner will have his "self" destroyed and then raised up to Heaven

    After all he was a follower of Jakob Boehme, who was a heretic, and I sense many of these ideas in Law's works
     
  19. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

    Posts:
    2,053
    Likes Received:
    1,832
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    American Anglican
    I think he is referencing St Paul's words in 1Corinthians 3:

    "Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire."

    What is not forgiven will be purged, until it is not I but Christ who lives in me.
     
  20. PotterMcKinney

    PotterMcKinney Active Member Typist Anglican

    Posts:
    311
    Likes Received:
    188
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    PECUSA
    I'm not square on how Boehme was a heretic, nor how Law was a gnostic. Could you and @JayEhm elaborate on that?
     

Share This Page