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FROM THE DOCUMENTS OF RODGER TUTT #63

DEATH SHALL BE ABOLISHED - 1 Cor. 15:20-28

Argument:
“This only means that believers will never die again.”

RESPONSES:
Bob Evely
I would simply suggest that these folks are ignoring the context of the 1 Corinthians 15 passage (ALL in Adam … ALL in Christ, etc) and the many other ALL passages in Scripture. It is a case where their minds are made up that only believers will ever be saved; so they find it necessary to place limitations on what the Scriptures actually say, lest their doctrines fall apart.

Tony Nungesser
Death is abolished for the believer AT HIS PRESENCE. In 1 Cor.15:25 death is abolished AFTER Christ hands over the kingdom to God and all sovereignty, authority and power are done away. Then the rest of mankind will have death abolished for them and only then.

Kenneth Larsen
For me, 1 Cor. 15:20-28 is where the abolition of death is best detailed. And the subject is clearly all mankind. Plus, it says plainly that it is the LAST enemy, clearly detailing the subjection of all which must occur BEFORE. And there are clearly still kings during the New Jerusalem eon, so human authorities have yet to be nullified; Christ's mission isn't complete. Rev. 21:24. Death will be abolished for all mankind in three stages -1 Cor. 15:22-24. Then there are verses like Romans 5:18, 19.

"For this was the Son of God manifested, that He should be annulling the acts of the Adversary." 1 John 3:8b (CLV) That includes the act of leading Adam and Eve into the knowledge of good and evil. Christ was manifested to annul not only sin, but also death. For the second death to be endless would mean that the acts of the Adversary would never be annulled.

If only believers never die again, then death would be abolished when Christ returns, wouldn’t it? That would be the consummation or “end.” Why then is there the 1,000 years? Isn’t Satan an enemy? Yet the Bible says that death is the last enemy. Satan is still rebellious after the 1,000 years.

I would ask them, "When do you think death will be abolished?"

If they say, "When Christ returns", I would ask, "And the events of
Rev. 20:7-15, do they occur after or before Christ's second coming?"

If they say, "After", I would ask them if they had read 1 Cor. 15:20-28 lately. I would encourage them to do so and to notice that death will be the last enemy, and God will abolish it. If they agree with that, I would ask them, how can death be abolished when Christ returns if Satan will later attack the saints; wouldn't that mean that there are still enemies besides death in existence? Wouldn't the fact that the nations will be deceived and join Satan in opposing God prove that God will still have many enemies at that time? I would point out that 1 Cor. 15:24-27 shows that Christ will give up His kingdom to God
the Father once all enemies are subjected and death is abolished. And I would mention one of the parallel passages in Mk. 12:36, which shows that Christ will be at God's right hand UNTIL a certain point in time, which is detailed in 1 Cor. 15. Then I would point out how Rev. 22:1-3 shows clearly that the consummation of 1 Cor. 15:24, when Christ will surrender the throne to His Father, will not yet have arrived during the New Jerusalem eon.

My POV is that God would not name the lake of fire the second death, make that death permanent, and yet claim that death had been abolished. It simply doesn't make sense to me. To argue that death being abolished only means that believers will never die again is
similar to saying that slums being abolished only means no new slums will be created, leaving the existing slums unchanged.

James Coram
The context has in view all mankind (not simply believers):
Death was long ago instituted ("to die, you shall be dying"); and yet
this institution which, at present, is very much still in effect, one
day, will be abolished.
http://www.concordant.org/expo...nDestiny/1cor15.html
See article above on this point also, for the likeness/parallel I
draw between, on the one hand, slavery, and on the other, death.

Martin Zender
A snippet from The Really Bad Thing About Free Will (2006), pages
66-67, by Martin Zender:
“God is now conciliated to all mankind (II Corinthians 5:19). This blessing has come to us through the blood of Christ’s cross (Colossians 1:20). God no longer holds men’s offenses against them (II Corinthians 5:19). This same blood will reconcile all to Himself, both that in the heavens and that on earth (Colossians 1:20).
The cross saves everyone, but not all at once (I Corinthians 15:22-23). Jesus Christ is a ransom for all, but the testimony of it will not be seen until the eras designated to show it (I Timothy 2:6).God will one day be all and in all (I Corinthians 15:28). How can He
be that if billions of the all remain dead or tortured?
Paul speaks of a time called the consummation, when death is to be
abolished (I Corinthians 15:26; II Timothy 1:10). If there will one
day be no more death, then the time is coming when even the second
death will cease to be. At this time, those formerly captured by it
will be delivered into the life won for them by Christ on the cross.
With no more death, nothing remains but life. Some come to Christ
sooner, some come later. But eventually, all come.”
 
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FROM THE DOCUMENTS OF RODGER TUTT #64

THE CIRCUMCISION EVANGEL VERSUS THE UNCIRCUMCISION EVANGEL
Bob Evely

As to the “why’s” of God’s plan; we can only speculate. The fact is that no man is deserving of grace, and God’s method is to begin with a group He has called (the body of Christ) to display His grace to the remainder of humanity and to proclaim the evangel … all toward the end that grace and salvation is realized by all.

As for the words of Jesus, we must remember these pertain to the kingdom to come upon the earth … the restoration of Israel’s kingdom. In many of Jesus’ words we see that the “rules” are very works-based. But later came a more full expression of grace, when God had demonstrated that NONE could earn righteousness thru works … and with the “new rules” that Paul subsequently talked about, it is all grace and no works to boast of.

When Paul talks about the fact that some, based on behavior, would not enter the kingdom … He is telling his audience that as it pertains to the earthly kingdom, these folks would be excluded. He says this to instill within them the idea that as a result of God’s grace, they too should avoid these behaviors. The main difference in evangel’s is that the Circumcision evangel told folks … have faith and works. Paul’s Uncircumcision evangel is simply have faith, as God has accomplished what man could not. We must remember that as we read various parts of the Scriptures that mankind is a work in progress. When we read of God’s anger, or folks being excluded from the earthly kingdom, etc. … this is a part of the process, thru which God is working toward His ultimate, eventual goal … the salvation and reconciliation of all.

When folks tend to ask questions about specific objections, always try to get them to first look at the basic overall plan that God has in store for mankind. In other words, we must consider the Bible in total first to see how God is working in all ages … and then we can worry about the specific questions. To jump into the questions too quickly takes the focus off of God’s revelation in total.
 
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FROM THE DOCUMENTS OF RODGER TUTT #65

Love's Goal

All that love is, God is, for God is love. As the negative side of love is unselfish - seeketh not her own - so her positive side is concern for others, a deep, ardent, all consuming concern: dauntless, self-sacrificing, invincible. “Love never faileth.” Such is the divine essence and this it is that is imparted to the creature.
There can be no self-complacency with God, neither could He provide a self-satisfied salvation. Divine joy is in the fullness of love, and love is all-embracing. To speak of a happy shepherd with an incomplete flock, or even of a happy flock with comrades missing, would be to malign both sheep and shepherd.
Heaven’s joys will be full only when sin’s sorrow cease. “Tis of mine” will be the yearning cry of the Good Shepherd spirit in the bosom of both saint and Saviour until the last of all the lost has been gathered home. Love cannot omit; His soul travail was for all. Neither can love abandon or forget. His purpose, as His promise, is “until He find it”. Thus it is that He is yet to “see of the travail of His soul and be satisfied.” And surely we too shall be satisfied when conformed to this likeness. Oh, the fullness of heaven’s joy when sin’s sorrows shall have ceased!
D. Buchanan
 
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FROM THE DOCUMENTS OF RODGER TUTT #66

WHY?

Why did God make the universe, the earth and sky above?
Scripture gives the answer when it says that “God is Love”.
Before God made the universe He worked out a master plan.
He knew how everything would end before it all began.
He made mankind so He could have an object for His love,
But man was blind and did not see that it came from above.
So God created evil as He had created night,
So man could see the good in Him - In darkness we see light.
He made the “blackboard” very black, with evil, sin, and woe.
He made an adversary to be His cunning foe.
He made the earth to be a “stage” to show the hosts above,
By all of our experiences, His wisdom and His love.
He locks up all in stubbornness to make His mercy clear;
Lets Satan lure all men away so He can draw all near.
He gives His only firstborn Son to die and save us all.
Yet each in his own class we read; we’re blind until our call.
You ask me why God made the earth, the glittering stars above?
The Scriptures give the answer when they say that ‘God is love”.
Ray Prinzing
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Phil:
I am glad you are able to "relax" in the assurance of God's love and desire that no one be damned to hell for eternity, Roger. I note that you do recognize the reality of people dying in some measure of alienation from God, and so you say:
quote:
In my opinion, people who claim to be “saved” are mistaken when they think they will not receive corrective punishment after their resurrection from the dead. The death and resurrection of Jesus Christ removed the enmity between God and His creatures. But wrong attitudes cannot be forgiven. Wrong attitudes must change, and both people who claim to be “saved”, and the rest of us, will receive corrective punishment for a length of time that God will decide for each individual.

That's very similar to the Catholic idea of Purgatory.

Somehow in all of this God does leave us free to change attitudes . . . or not. Still, I'm sure the Lord is capable of persuading even the worst of us to "come around."


THE SECOND DEATH – A.E. SAXBY

“Orthodox theology holds the second death to be a state of endless torment in which the sufferers are held forever in conscious being by a continuous act of Divine preservation, with the soul object of a punishment without end. This however would in no sense be death. The second death does not perpetuate the hopeless condition of the sinner to all eternity.

What the Holy Spirit mean by ‘fire and brimstone’ is ‘divine purification,’ or a judgment fire which consumes all that is antagonistic to divine law and love.

Before the Great White Throne, that vast throng, their naked spirits conscious now of the blazing holiness of God, will be subjected to the process of the second death. What those processes are, their intensity and their duration, we are not told. They will suffice, however, not in themselves to perfect, but to bring those who suffer them to that agreement with the judgment upon sin which they effect, and through the cross finally to reconcile them to God (Col. 1:20), in a subjection where He will be ‘All in all.’ When that acquiescence in judgment upon sin is reached, and applied in soul and spirit, then will be possible the final victory over death. Hence it is written that when this subjection is reached, then and only then, ‘the last enemy, death, shall be destroyed.’ ”
 
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FROM THE DOCUMENTS OF RODGER TUTT #67
THE PLAN OF THE MASTER WEAVER
Our lives are but fine weavings
That God and we prepare,
Each life becomes a fabric planned
And fashioned in His care.

We may not always see just how
The weavings intertwine,
But we must trust the Master's hand
And follow His design,
For He can view the pattern
Upon the upper side,
While we must look from underneath
And trust in Him to guide...

Sometimes a strand of sorrow
Is added to His plan,
And though it's difficult for us,
We still must understand
That it's He who fills the shuttle,
It's He who knows what's best,
So we must weave in patience
And leave to Him the rest...

Not till the loom is silent
And the shuttles cease to fly
Shall God unroll the canvas
And explain the reason why ---
The dark threads are as needed
In the Weaver's skillful hand
As the threads of gold and silver
In the pattern He has planned.

---Author Unknown
 
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FROM THE DOCUMENTS OF RODGER TUTT #68

Is God a Failure? - Eleanor Garrod

Now that’s a pretty poignant question. Or is it an insinuation? An inference? Or implication? Or is it truth, as many would have you believe? Have you ever heard a sermon by that title? I doubt if you have. But I’m certain you have heard many a sermon which has been riddled with such implications.
Allow me to rephrase the question: Have you ever heard a sermon stating that if you don’t accept Jesus, you’ll burn forever in hell? Ah, I knew I’d touch a raw nerve. You have, haven’t you? If you heard that God is going to lose so much as one individual to the devil forever, then God is a failure.
If you have heard that the heathen (who have never had an opportunity to hear of Jesus) will be tormented forever for not believing in Him, then you’ve heard that God is a failure.
If you’ve heard that man’s puny will can withstand the omnipotent will of God, and that man’s will can paralyze God’s will, then you have heard that God is a failure.
If you’ve heard that the Adversary outsmarted God in the garden of Eden, if you’ve heard that God did not want Adam and Eve to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, then you’ve heard that God is a failure.
If you’ve ever heard anyone affirm that God will lose 95% of His created beings that He’s placed on planet earth, and will torment them forever, then you’ve clearly heard that God is a failure.
If the Good Shepherd is not willing that any should perish, and yet gets weary and gives up before He finds the last sheep that’s lost, then you know that God is a failure.
If no one can come to Jesus except the Father draws him, and if the Father - eventually - does not draw every single person, then God is a failure.
What is the response of your heart to the poised question: Is God a failure? Ah, my heart says, “Nay, a billion nays.” My heart has fallen in love with a God who does all things perfectly, and one day all will be made plain, and in the end He will become ‘All in All’ and for that day my heart does wait and meanwhile I rejoice and endure because I see Him, the invisible One.
By faith I see a Master Plan for the ages and beyond, and I know I am part of that plan, and for this I whisper, “Thank you, Jesus.” I sing a song to my Beloved, Hallelujah!
In Love with Him, Eleanor Garrod
 
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FROM THE DOCUMENTS OF RODGER TUTT #69

A Message Of Comfort
Let Nothing be Worrying You!
William Mealand

“Let nothing be worrying you, but in every prayer and petition let your requests be made known to God with thanksgiving, and the peace of God, being superior to every frame of mind, shall garrison your hearts and your apprehensions in Christ Jesus” Phil 4:6-7.
There is an elixir of life in words like these. Touching life at all points, they embrace every experience, and affect every problem. How positive they are, how emphatic! There is no room left for the smallest doubt to intrude. The words are just an exquisite echo of the Psalmist’s thought - fret not thyself!
How complete, how inclusive the injunction is! Let nothing be worrying you. Not a single thing. But can we realize it? Is it possible to live up to such a counsel of perfection? A thousand times, yes! And for the great reason that this rare paragraph enshrines a God given assurance. There is a promise, a pledge of a superior peace - the peace of God, His perfect provision for the keeping, the steadying of our hearts in Christ Jesus.
What an expression of God’s solicitude! And for each of us to make true in the circumstances of life. How true, rests with the quality of our reliance upon God. In how far we leave things to Him, for His working out. And His appointment is never a disappointment. Therefore, on no account are we to worry. It does no good, changes nothing, nor ever gives us back the thing we prized. It enfeebles and wastes our strength, keeps the brain excited, the blood feverish, and the heart beating wildly.
If, then, we must not worry, and there are things in life calculated to make us anxious, how may we displace worry? By taking God into our confidence as we voice immediate needs. “Let your requests be made known to God, with thanksgiving.” Note the proviso - with thanksgiving, which in itself affects the burdened mind. Indeed, thankfulness for the simple things of life, the ordinary, forgettable things, means much.
The tragic indictment of the ancient world was that, “knowing God, not as God do they glorify or thank Him.” Stars in the heaven are thanked, the saints in the calendar, but not God. So many occasions call for it, and a voiced acknowledgment deepens our consciousness of His daily care.
No aspect or department of life is outside the interest of God, our Father. He is at all times an interested Listener. Our requests, therefore, may be unreservedly made known. Let them flow forth, without any concern as to how they will be met. That rests with God’s will and wisdom. Seeing all the intricacies of life, He appoints in accord with them. Has He not ordered them, both good and ill?
There are some things in life God would not have us change! And happy are we, if, in the acceptance of them, we see the Father’s own rare ordering. Let us so live, in the spirit of a line from a hymn: “I do not ask to see the distant scene, one step enough for me.” It suffices that we make our requests known to God, and leave them with Him. This done, with thanksgiving, there will come to heart and mind, God’s own wonderful peace.
“And the peace of God, being superior to every frame of mind, shall garrison your hearts and your apprehensions in Christ Jesus.” Here, in a peace which surpasses all power of thought, lies the strength and joy of Paul’s counsel of perfection. It is the peace of God, in contrast with, and superior to, all human counsel, palliative, or panacea.
Gift of the God of peace, it is the only calm in a world of unrest. But oh, how this peace differs from that which the world offers! WE see the word used all around us. Yet how little it conveys, how far short it falls, of all that such a word should stand for! Does it not look lost, as a wandering star from it’s orbit?
Only as linked with God and His ministering grace does the word hold real comfort and consolation. In such union it has vital power, confirming its frequent and heartening occurrence in the calm of a rich content. The peace of God. Grace and peace. Yes, yes. In spite of all around us, and the tangle of daily events, For our hearts shall be as a citadel, gloriously kept. “The Lord is thy Keeper.”
What a glad secret of life! One that Christ Himself exemplified. He did not worry or fret impatiently. He trusted, He rested supremely in God. He gave Himself completely over to God. He prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup be passing by from Me. Moreover, not as I will, but as Thou!” A second time He prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this to pass by from me except I should be drinking it, let Thy will be done!” Matt. 26:39,42.
How sublime an example of utter submission to God’s will! There has been but One, and there will never be another so altogether acquiescent to the Father’s will. The purpose, will, and majesty of God, the Father, was everything to Him. How much so we have yet to see. In the meanwhile, let us hold by this superior peace. It is resident in Him. He is our peace, and He is on the throne, even the throne of the universe.
Therefore, “let nothing be worrying you.” Rather, “let your requests be made known to God, with thanksgiving.” In these two statements we have first a prohibition, then an injunction. Is it not that prayer should be the death of care? It follows, however, that the source or cause of worry should not be self-made. It should be that imposed on us, and not something fashioned by ourselves which we persist in carrying. This we must throw away. Life, to be happily lived, must have in all its aspects, a felt consciousness of God. At all times there should be a sense of God’s ruling. For, not only is God operating the universe in accord with the counsel of His will, but Christ is carrying it on by His powerful declaration. What control is here, and how complete! Just to feel that we are entirely in God’s hands, flung upon His care and control, is to know a peace inviolate. What small resemblance to the faith of Christ our faltering trust displays! Self looms so large with us, and hence disquietude. Not so with our Lord. He displayed the dignity of complete assurance. Rejecting His disquietude, He puts in its place the thought of the majesty and power of God the Father.
Let us learn of Him to quietly accept our Father’s will. Let us be disposed to that which is above, where Christ is, enthroned at God’s right hand. Then we shall know the peace of God, and how superior it is to every frame of mind. And the God of peace shall be with you, in every moment, every hour.

“Drop They still dews of quietness,
Till all our strivings cease:
Take from our souls the strain and stress,
And let our ordered lives confess
The beauty of Thy peace.”
 
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FROM THE DOCUMENTS OF RODGER TUTT #70

THE BLACKEST OF ALL BACKGROUNDS

As some of you know, I, Rodger Tutt, had a horrific twelve year nervous breakdown (1966-78, I’m 74 now) over my inability to successfully emotionally cope with the idea that God would let anyone suffer forever.

By listening to many audio tapes by Ray Prinzing over that period of time, I was able to gradually recover. All of Ray Prinzing’s writings can be accessed by typing his name into Google. There are several Google pages of links about him.

Millions of Muslims believe that non Muslims are going to suffer forever in hell.
Quote from
Islamic Beliefs about the Afterlife
“Being a Muslim does not keep one out of Hell, but non-Muslims (kafir), however, will be punished eternally.”
http://www.religionfacts.com/islam/beli ... erlife.htm

And, as most people already know, millions of Christians believe that non-Christians are going to suffer forever in hell.

The way that I emotionally cope with (i.e. stop myself from going crazy again) because of the existence of ETers (i.e. believers in eternal torment), is to perceive ETers as God’s vessels of grossest dishonour -- a necessary foil of contrast in the guise of truth – a part of the blackest of backgrounds, upon which God will paint His glorious masterpiece of universal transformation using the paint brushes of His love that cannot fail, and His grace that can never be defeated.

The marred vessels (i.e. ETers), never leave the Potter’s hands, (they are marred in the Potter’s hands), and neither will anyone leave the Potters hands. After our resurrection from the dead, all ETers will be refashioned, and transformed into vessels of honour, and it will be plain for all to see that it was better that ETers were vessels of dishonour for a long as they were (Jeremiah chapter 18).

One of the dishonourable characteristics of some ETers is that they have no desire whatsoever to check out the reasons why URs (i.e. universal reconciliationists) believe that a literally translated, (not interpretively) translated Bible, actually teaches universal salvation.

But it may be that a silent member, or surfer, or lurker on this forum might be motivated enough to check us out and decide if the conclusions of URs have any merit.

UNIVERSAL SALVATION UNIVERSITY
http://richardwaynegarganta.co...iversalsalvation.htm

No doubt, some ETers will say that they have examined the evidence of the URs and have rejected it as being false. That, of course is to be expected of those for whom God has chosen to temporarily be a marred vessel. At least, that is the way I see it.
In my opinion, the greatest of all manifestations of God’s grace in action on this earth is that anyone can believe that He is going to let anyone suffer forever and not have a nervous breakdown thinking about it.
 
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ABRAHAM LINCOLN QUOTE

"I used to think that it took the smartest kind of man to preach and defend Universalism; I now think entirely differently. It is the easiest faith to preach that I have ever heard.
There is more proof in its favor than in any other doctrine I have ever heard.

I have a suit in court here tomorrow and if I had as much proof in its favor as there is in Universalism, I would go home, and leave my student to take charge of it, and I should feel perfectly certain that he would gain it."
-Abraham Lincoln
http://scuniversalist.blogspot...ln-universalist.html

According to Google quotes Abraham Lincoln also said,
“The best way to destroy an enemy is to make them your friend.” (unquote)

God always does things “the best way.” :-)
 
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GOD’S “CONVERSION” – Kenneth Larsen

God’s “Conversion” : A mythological saga of our Heavenly Father’s change of character, as told by theologians, ancient and modern.

In Adam, all are dying, for the creation was subjected to vanity. 1Cor. 15:22; Ro. 8:20. It was through one offense for all mankind for condemnation. Ro. 5:18. We were all constituted sinners through the disobedience of one man. Ro. 5:19. This collective perdition came through no choice of ours as individuals, but is our inheritance, our fate.

Nevertheless, so the story goes, there came a time when God, wanting to conform His doings to the highest ethical standards, set Himself upon a radically different course. Henceforth, He would not act arbitrarily, but only in accordance with the rights and sovereign choices of the individual; from then on He was to obtain permission from His creature before acting on his or her behalf. In contrast to the collective loss, salvation was to be an individual matter, and subject to obtaining cooperation from His subjects. No more “spiritual collectivism”; now God had enthusiastically embraced the “spiritual free market”. Our Heavenly Father was now, henceforth and officially, a “Gentleman”, and would no longer force anything upon anyone; He would subject His will that all mankind be saved to the whims of the very creation He had formerly confined under collective condemnation. 1 Tim. 2:1-6. The “plan of salvation” would consist of Christ offering salvation to all, and then being satisfied with whatever percentage He could manage to save. Isaiah 53. He would be honorifically titled “the Savior of all mankind”, but that would really amount to nothing more than wishful thinking, for He would especially (that is, only, as the story goes) save those who believe during this life. 1 Tim. 4:9-11.

Did God truly change His dealings with mankind? Does He really change?
Of course not! Mal. 3:6; Heb. 1:12; 13:8; Jn. 14:9; 10:30. “For even as, in Adam, all are dying, thus also, in Christ, shall all be vivified.” 1 Cor. 15:22. “Even as… thus also…”- In similar fashion to the collective death, is the collective life! Romans 5:15- “But not as the offense, thus also the grace. For if, by the offense of the one, the many died, much rather the grace of God and the gratuity in grace, which is of the One Man, Jesus Christ, to the many superabounds.” Who are the many who died because of Adam’s offense? All mankind. And so, much rather, God’s gratuity in grace, through Christ’s perfect life and obedience to the death of the cross, SUPERABOUNDS to the many- all mankind! Does the salvation of some of those lost suggest a superabundance of grace? No! Does a collective, obligatory condemnation to sin and death, coupled with an individual, optional justification of life constitute a superabundance of grace? Not by a long shot! God subjected the creation to vanity in HOPE! Ro. 8:20. Did He hope that the entrance of sin would cause even one to be permanently lost? Of course not! Lk. 15:3-32.

Ro. 5:18, 19- “Consequently, then, as it was through one offense for all mankind for condemnation, thus also it is through one just award for all mankind for life's justifying. For even as, through the disobedience of the one man, the many were constituted sinners, thus also, through the obedience of the One, the many shall be constituted just.” As it was through Adam (a collective condemnation), THUS ALSO it will be through Christ (a collective justification of life)! God promises a universal reconciliation. Col. 1:15-20; Phil. 2:5-11. He will draw all creation to Himself, using whatever loving means He has at His disposal, including judgments. Jn. 12:32; 1:9-13; 1 Cor. 3:10-15; Lk. 12:45-49. Our Heavenly Father will confer faith and repentance upon all, at the time He chooses. 2 Pt.3:9; Acts 5:31; 11:18; 17:31; 2 Tim. 2:25. Obviously, our stubborn will must be subdued, but take heart, for “Not stronger that He are we!” 1 Cor. 10:22; Is. 45:22, 23. Our unchanging God will be All in all! 1 Cor. 15:20-28.

EDITOR’S NOTE

Some ask, Why does it say "the many" instead of "all" in Roman 5:19?

This is because the one disobedient man (Adam), and the One righteous Man (Christ) are put in a class by themselves. They are in contrast with "the many."

We may put it as follows:
The one disobedient man plus "the many" equals all mankind made sinners.
The One obedient Man plus "the many" equals all mankind made righteous.

That "the one" plus "the many" made sinners includes all mankind no one will deny.

Even so, "the One" plus "the many" made righteous is all-inclusive and guarantees the salvation of all mankind.
 
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NEW SNIPPETS

#1. A snippet from Universalism the Prevailing Doctrine of the Christian
Church During its First Five Hundred Years, by J. W. Hanson, 1899:

(Origen Adamantius)
“This greatest of all Christian apologists and exegetes was a distinctive Universalist. He could not have misunderstood or misinterpreted the teachings of his Master. The language of the New Testament was his mother tongue. He derived the teachings of Christ from Christ himself in a direct line through his teacher Clement; and he placed the defense of Christianity on Universalist grounds.
When Celsus, in his “True Discourse”, the first great assault on Christianity, objected to Christianity on the ground that it taught punishment by fire, Origen replied that the threatened fire possessed a disciplinary, purifying quality that will consume in the sinner whatever evil material it can find to consume….God will act the part….Origen says, “not like a cook but like a God who is a benefactor of those who stand in need of discipline of fire.””
 
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#2. A snippet from Whatever Became of Melanie? (2005), pages 138-139, by
Allan Ernest Chevrier:

(Romans 5:18-21)
“Now what was the result of Adam’s transgression? It was universal condemnation of all, without first consulting them or asking for their contribution. The result of Adam’s disobedience was complete and universal in its scope and consequence, plunging each and every member of his race into sin and spiritual separation from God.
Now, just as Adam’s sin had a direct, powerful, irresistible effect on the whole for evil, so the righteous act of Christ has a direct, powerful, irresistible effect on the whole for good. Just as one sin resulted in universal, real, actual condemnation, so the one act of
righteousness performed by Christ, the second Adam, results in universal, real, actual justification, not just an opportunity to cast your lot in with Jesus, not just the offer of life, but the real, actual, powerful impartation of life! The real actual, powerful
communication of righteousness! The plain language of the text allows for nothing less!”
 
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Roger, you've been basically expounding on a universalist perspective of salvation for quite some time, but there is one point I wonder about: the issue of human freedom. It's one thing to say that God's intent is the salvation of all, and that God intends no punishment or Hell for anyone, especially those who have failed to jump through ecclesiastical hoops. But what about those whose hearts and minds are closed to God? This is more than a theoretical possibility; Scripture speaks of such people all over the place, as do the Saints and mystics of the ages. God, it seems, is somehow constrained by human freedom, and will not over-ride its exercise; the divine justice is premised on this.

My thought has been that "hell" is being left to oneself . . . alone . . . without God . . . but in the company of other such souls, including fallen angels. That would be horrible enough, don't you think? It would certainly be "divine justice," which is a corollary to the divine mercy you've been emphasizing.
 
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”Tradition has taught that God will not save a person against their will. I agree. However He has the power to orchestrate whatever circumstances are necessary to effect one’s will to change.

Once a full revelation of God is received in the ages to come (Eph. 2:7), men will bow and confess that Jesus Christ is Lord just as Isaiah and Paul prophesied (Is. 45:21-25; Rom. 4:11; Ph. 2:9-11). Who would want to continue in active and persistent rebellion knowing God only wants what is best for them? Knowing the great goodness and love of God, along with the Holy Spirit working in their hearts, these hardened hearts must melt before His glorious being.

It is impossible that an omnipotent God can fail in His purpose so that some would forever resist unconditional love opting for everlasting pain. This would be totally irrational. And even if one were that irrational, such resistance would not arise out of a ‘free’ will, but an ‘enslaved’ will, a will in bondage to an enslaved mind.”
GERRY BEAUCHEMIN

Here is a helpful article on the subject.
MAN IS NOT A FREE MORAL AGENT
http://www.godfire.net/eby/saviour_of_the_world.html

“God is now conciliated to all mankind (II Corinthians 5:19). This
blessing has come to us through the blood of Christ’s cross
(Colossians 1:20). God no longer holds men’s offenses against them (II
Corinthians 5:19). This same blood will reconcile all to Himself, both
that in the heavens and that on earth (Colossians 1:20).
The cross saves everyone, but not all at once (I Corinthians
15:22-23). Jesus Christ is a ransom for all, but the testimony of it
will not be seen until the eras designated to show it (I Timothy 2:6).
God will one day be all and in all (I Corinthians 15:28). How can He
be that if billions of the all remain dead or tortured?
Paul speaks of a time called the consummation, when death is to be
abolished (I Corinthians 15:26; II Timothy 1:10). If there will one
day be no more death, then the time is coming when even the second
death will cease to be. At this time, those formerly captured by it
will be delivered into the life won for them by Christ on the cross.
With no more death, nothing remains but life. Some come to Christ
sooner, some come later. But eventually, all come.”
Martin Zender
 
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I believe that the reconciliation of Satan will be the greatest manifestation of God's grace in action among the celestials
http://www.godfire.net/eby/reconcilehvns.html

UNIVERSAL RECONCILIATION – MINNIE ALBERTSON
“The original scriptures taught final universal salvation; but translators usually rejected that theme. So they added to, or dropped words, to make the text conform to their wrong thinking. They could not eradicate the original theme; but we inherited their wrong thinking in our translations, and so we have the resulting direct contradictions. Unknown time periods they made endless.
Salvation is for angels also. ‘All things were created by Him, and for Him’ (Col. 1:16).
‘For Thy pleasure they are and were created (Rev. 4:11). So He ‘reconciles all things unto Himself, whether they be on earth, or things in the heavens (Col. 1:16-21).
Even the devil is not too evil to be corrected. Note who he belongs to, as well as those he deceives. ‘The deceived and the deceiver are His’ (Job 12:16). (end quote)

“God delights to reconcile all, whether those on the earth, or those in the heavens (Col. 1:20). Therefore there is no more reason to suppose that Satan is not included therein than that any other certain creature is not included therein. Therefore it must be that that notable creature who had rightly long been termed “the Adversary,” is very much included in the reconciliation of the universe, at which time this title (“Adversary” or “Satan”) necessarily will no longer apply, since he will be reconciled and be at peace.” (end quote)
Jim Coram, UNSEARCHABLE RICHES, March 2005.

“Ah, I long intently for that day when even the devil himself shall put away his pitchfork, hang up his horns, and come humbly and brokenly to the Father's house! Does that startle you? How else could it be in that glad day when the Christ has finally RECONCILED ALL THINGS IN HEAVEN AND IN EARTH, including all the PRINCIPALITIES AND POWERS OF THE HEAVENLY SPHERE!” (end quote)
RECONCILIATION IN THE HEAVENS – J. Preston Eby
http://www.godfire.net/eby/reconcilehvns.html

THE EVERLASTING GOSPEL – PAUL SIEGVOLCK
“Col. 1: 16-20 teaches us the extent of the reconciliation made by Christ, namely, that it extends itself over the whole creation. Therefore the fallen angels must also necessarily have their share in it, for they do incontestably belong to the invisible things created by Christ, and consequently to all things including the things in the heavens.
‘Jehovah is good to all: and His tender mercies are over all His works.’ Psalm 145:9
In this passage we are plainly told that the mercy of God, or His tender love, does not only extend itself to men, but universally towards all creatures that have their being and stand in need of mercy; and consequently also towards the fallen angels; which tender love of God must necessarily at last effect or bring about the restoration of all corrupt creatures, for it is not a weak or faint, but an almighty love.” (end quote)

AVITUS and BASIL, A GRECIAN (approx. 410 A.D.) together taught
“Future torments are not endless; for although they are called everlasting, yet that word in the original Greek, does not, according to its etymology, and its frequent use, signify endless, but answers only to the duration of an age; so that every sinner, after the purification of his conscience, shall return into the unity of the body of Christ.
The devil himself will at length be saved, when all his wickedness shall have been subdued. (end quote)

ERSKINE’S SKETCHES OF CHURCH HISTORY records the words of John Gasper Christian Lavater.
“God is not gracious in time and cruel through eternity. Ascribe not to God, what in a human judge all would account a defect in wisdom and goodness, the punishing for the sake of punishing. It is enough my Creator, Thou art love. Love seeketh not her own; Thou seekest the happiness of all, and shouldst Thou not then find what Thou seekest? Shouldst Thou not be able to do what Thou willest?
My prayers are comprehensive. I embrace in my heart all men; present and future times, and nations, yea Satan himself. I present them all to God, with the warmest wishes that He will have mercy on them all.” (end quote)

CLOUDS AND SUNSHINE – J.S. Taylor
I cannot believe that any being will exist in any part of the universe, so steeped in guilt and anguish (no, not Satan himself), as to be beyond the redeeming love and healing power of the Creator.
Oh, no; on the contrary, I believe that in this mysterious, but divinely ordained conflict of good and evil, the powers of light are everywhere slowly but surely gaining the ascendancy over the powers of darkness, and that it will continue to be so, even unto the perfect day; yes, that perfect day, wherein all these blessed victories over sin and ignorance shall have been consummated, these transformations completed, and no solitary stain of folly, guilt, or grief, be left to mar the lustre of the universe.” (end quote)

Gregory of Nyssa (335-390)
What is the scope of St. Paul’s dissertations? That the nature of evil shall, at length, be wholly exterminated, and divine immortal goodness embrace within itself every rational creature; so that of all who were made by God, not one shall be excluded from His kingdom. All the viciousness that like a corrupt matter is mingled in things shall be dissolved and consumed in fire; and everything shall be restored to its pristine state of purity.
In 1Cor. 15:22-28, the apostle Paul declares the extinction of all sin, saying that God will be All in all. For God will be truly All in all only when no evil shall remain in the nature of things. All evil must at length, be entirely removed from everything, so that it shall no more exist. For such being the nature of sin, that it cannot exist without a corrupt motive, it must, of course, be perfectly dissolved and wholly destroyed, so that nothing can remain a receptacle of it, when all motive and influences shall spring from God alone.
As the devil assumed a fleshly shape in order to ruin human nature, so the Lord took flesh for the salvation of man; and thus He blesses not only him who was ruined, but him also who led him into perdition; so that He both delivers man from sin, and heals the author of sin himself.” (end quote)

COMMENTARY ON THE NEW TESTAMENT – Jerome (347-420 A.D.)
"In the end or consummation of things, all shall be restored to their original state, and be again united in one body. We cannot be ignorant that Christ’s blood benefited the angels and those who are in hell; though we know not the manner in which it produced such effects. The apostate angels shall become such as they were created; and man, who has been cast out of paradise, shall be restored thither again. And this shall be accomplished in such a way, that all shall be united together by mutual charity, so that the members will delight in each other, and rejoice in each other’s promotion.
The apostate angels, and the prince of this world, though now ungovernable, plunging themselves into the depths of sin, shall, in the end, embrace the happy dominion of Christ and His saints."

THE WAY TO SALVATION IN THE CHRISTIAN GOSPEL – ERNEST L. MARTIN
“The traditional interpretation of an everlasting hell fire for sinners is as wrong and as senseless as believing that a three dollar bill is legal tender.
Ultimate salvation is something that has been secured by Christ for all mankind without the works of man (either good or bad) being involved in the issue. Everyone will finally be saved and brought to a full knowledge of the truth of God. All humans will finally be forgiven for their sins and they will become reconciled to God. All things in the heavens, on earth and under the earth (the angels who are kept in chains in the bowels of the earth) will one day proclaim the Lordship of Christ to the glory of God the Father.
But it will not only be all humans who are reconciled to God (now that God has reconciled Himself to mankind). The reconciliation will reach out to embrace all the hostile powers which have been out of harmony with God over the centuries. There is prophesied, according to Paul, a full reconciliation between all the antagonistic beings throughout the universe. Even they will be reconciled amongst themselves,
Between themselves and mankind, and between themselves and God the Father (Col. 1:20). All grievances, both divine and human, are disposed of through the life and death of Christ our Saviour. Peace has been, or will be established between all hostile parties throughout the universe.

TWO STUDIES ON HEAVEN AND HELL – A.E. KNOCH
“Love is the great thing. God loves me. Christ died for me to display God’s affection. It has filled my heart to overflowing. I have tried to share it with my fellows, but O, so feebly and faithlessly. Yet I have known no joy so pure and permanent, no bliss so ecstatic as comes to me when some straying sinner or seeking saint enjoys God’s love through some word of mine. What will it be to be perfectly equipped with inexhaustible supplies of power and grace and fare forth into the celestial realms as an ambassador of peace to proclaim the evangel of God’s limitless love to the celestials of the starry spheres? This --- this will be happiness --- and heaven.
Not only does Paul see the entire earth blessed and saved, but all reconciled whom God created – even the principalities and powers of the heavens (Col. 1:20). So great is the power of the cross!”

A POEM BY A.G. CAMPBELL
I deem they greatly err, who hold
That He Who made the human soul,
Will not its destinies control
For final good – but, wrathful, fold
It in the shrouds of hopeless woe,
Of deathless gloom, of quenchless fire,
The creatures of His vengeful ire,
Whence it can never ransom know.

So, in the world to come, His love
Shall freely unto all abound;
Even prisoners in the depths profound
Shall see His kind face beam above
Their dreary cells, and hear His voice,
Unheeded once, in mercy call, --
“Turn, turn to Me and live!” and all
Shall hear the summons and rejoice.

Lost men, lost angels, shall return, --
Satan himself be purified;
Death shall be conquered in his pride,
And hell’s fierce fires shall cease to burn.
Then shall our God be All in all –
His love bear universal sway;
His love preserves all souls for aye,
Nor shall the weakest fear a fall.
 
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quote:
The original scriptures taught final universal salvation; but translators usually rejected that theme. So they added to, or dropped words, to make the text conform to their wrong thinking. They could not eradicate the original theme; but we inherited their wrong thinking in our translations, and so we have the resulting direct contradictions. Unknown time periods they made endless.

I doubt that position could be proven. I've done quite a bit of scripture study, but have never come across it.

I don't think there can be any doubting the universalist intent of the Incarnation, crucifixion, etc. That position is easier to defend that any that presumes that God's intent is to same sove and damn others -- a la some flavors of Calvinism.

quote:
God delights to reconcile all, whether those on the earth, or those in the heavens (Col. 1:20). Therefore there is no more reason to suppose that Satan is not included therein than that any other certain creature is not included therein.


Again, there can be no doubt of God's intent, but the statement above misunderstands the decisive finality of Satan's rebellion. What angels do they do with full mind and will, and so their rebellion is complete and irreversible. Such, at least, has been the understanding of angels passed down through the ages. So for Satan to be reconciled would entail either a different understanding of angels than what we have known, or a tweaking of their angelic nature by God in such manner as to give them another chance.

quote:
It is impossible that an omnipotent God can fail in His purpose so that some would forever resist unconditional love opting for everlasting pain. This would be totally irrational. And even if one were that irrational, such resistance would not arise out of a ‘free’ will, but an ‘enslaved’ will, a will in bondage to an enslaved mind.

Precisely! And such an enslaved will and mind is presumed to exist in those who live in mortal sin. Of course, it is not for any of us to judge who lives in such a state.

Roger, I'm all for universalism, but, unfortunately, the Scriptures do speak of hell, as you know. There's no getting around that. See Rev. 20:13-15; Mt. 25:41-46. There's also the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which is a compendium of traditional doctrinal teaching. See CCC 1033-37 below:
quote:


1033 We cannot be united with God unless we freely choose to love him. But we cannot love God if we sin gravely against him, against our neighbor or against ourselves: "He who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him."612 Our Lord warns us that we shall be separated from him if we fail to meet the serious needs of the poor and the little ones who are his brethren.613 To die in mortal sin without repenting and accepting God's merciful love means remaining separated from him for ever by our own free choice. This state of definitive self-exclusion from communion with God and the blessed is called "hell."

1034 Jesus often speaks of "Gehenna" of "the unquenchable fire" reserved for those who to the end of their lives refuse to believe and be converted, where both soul and body can be lost.614 Jesus solemnly proclaims that he "will send his angels, and they will gather . . . all evil doers, and throw them into the furnace of fire,"615 and that he will pronounce the condemnation: "Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire!"616

1035 The teaching of the Church affirms the existence of hell and its eternity. Immediately after death the souls of those who die in a state of mortal sin descend into hell, where they suffer the punishments of hell, "eternal fire."617 The chief punishment of hell is eternal separation from God, in whom alone man can possess the life and happiness for which he was created and for which he longs.

1036 The affirmations of Sacred Scripture and the teachings of the Church on the subject of hell are a call to the responsibility incumbent upon man to make use of his freedom in view of his eternal destiny. They are at the same time an urgent call to conversion: "Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few."618

Since we know neither the day nor the hour, we should follow the advice of the Lord and watch constantly so that, when the single course of our earthly life is completed, we may merit to enter with him into the marriage feast and be numbered among the blessed, and not, like the wicked and slothful servants, be ordered to depart into the eternal fire, into the outer darkness where "men will weep and gnash their teeth."619

1037 God predestines no one to go to hell;620 for this, a willful turning away from God (a mortal sin) is necessary, and persistence in it until the end. In the Eucharistic liturgy and in the daily prayers of her faithful, the Church implores the mercy of God, who does not want "any to perish, but all to come to repentance":621

The 600 numbers refer to footnotes.

I take these teachings from the CCC to be the final word on this topic, but feel free to carry on as you have been. We cannot hear enough about the mercy of God, but neither can we forget that God is also just.
 
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Why I believe that the Bible teaches that everyone who is cast into the lake of fire which is the second death will be saved out of it.

Greek scholar William Barclay wrote concerning kolasis aionion (age-during corrective chastisement) in Matthew 25:46
"The Greek word for punishment is kolasis, which was not originally an ethical word at all. It originally meant the pruning of trees to make them grow better. There is no instance in Greek secular literature where kolasis does not mean remedial punishment. It is a simple fact that in Greek kolasis always means remedial punishment. God's punishment is always for man's cure."

See what other Greek scholars say about it too.
AN ANALYTICAL STUDY OF WORDS – Louis Abbott
http://www.tentmaker.org/books/asw/Chapter11.html

Fifteen literally translated (not interpretively translated) Bibles that reveal what God will do with the sinners in Matthew 25:46
Concordant Literal, Young’s literal, Wilson’s Emphatic Diaglott, Rotherham’s Emphasized, Scarlett’s, J.W. Hanson’s New Covenant, Twentieth Century, Ferrar Fenton, The Western New Testament, Weymouth’s (unedited), Clementson’s, The New Testament of our Lord and Savior Jesus Anointed, The Restoration of Original Sacred Name Bible, Bullinger’s Companion Bible margins, Jonathan Mitchell’s translation (2010).

Regarding the meaning of aionios, many Greek scholars agree with John Wesley Hanson.
AIÓN – AIÓNIOS
http://www.tentmaker.org/books/Aion_lim.shtml

Dean Hough wrote “The definition given in THE VOCABULARY OF THE GREEK TESTAMENT (edited by James Hope Moulton and George Milligan) is helpful. Concerning aionios we read, “In general, the word depicts that of which the horizon is not in view . . .” (p.16). If the horizon of the extermination spoken of by Paul in 2 Thessalonians 1:9 is simply not in view, then we can see that what Paul says in 1 Corinthians 15:22 can truly occur. The same all who are dying in Adam, which includes some who incur eonian extermination, can indeed eventually be vivified in Christ.
The Bible, in fact, does not speak of judgment and condemnation, death and destruction, hades and Gehenna, or any of these serious consequences of sin, as unending. It may refer to them as not having the end in view, but none of these fearful works of God can keep Him from achieving His will (1Tim.2:4); reconciling all through the blood of Christ’s cross (Col.1:20, and becoming All in all (1 Cor.15:28).”
Dean Hough

SEE

THE SCHOLARS CORNER THE CENTER FOR BIBLE STUDIES IN CHRISTIAN UNIVERSAL SALVATION
http://www.tentmaker.org/ScholarsCorner.html
 
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Roger, the belief of the church isn't a matter of the meaning of words as deciphered by scholars. What the CCC expresses above in points 1033-37 is a summary of the belief of the church (not only Catholic, here: most Protestants believe something similar -- some much more strict, as you know.)

With Catholics, it's never been a matter of Scripture determining what the church believes, as Scripture expresses what the oral tradition already believed. That's why it's ridiculous for some of the people you quote to say that the Scriptures were changed. People who believe in reincarnation say the same, as do some of the gnostics. A change in Scripture would bump up against the faith of the community already established in its oral tradition, and so there would be a correction. Iow, what I am saying here is that the Church is the rightful interpreter of the meaning of Scripture.

We can surely agree to disagree about this matter. An old priest once told me that he believed there was such a state/place as Hell, but he wasn't sure there was anyone in there. I've never forgotten that one, but . . . I don't know. No one does, really. But there are Saints and mystics who have had "visions" of Hell, fwiw, and what they described was beyond horrible. What we don't know is if it's a permanent situation, or a phase of punishment inhering in the non-repented consequences of people's lives -- an inducement to "reconsider" their life stance. I can go with that, but, then I don't get to make up the "system," here. I'm content to let God sort it all out and trust that His mercy will be offered abundantly to all who are open to receiving it.
 
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The reason I am sure that everyone will eventually be saved is because God “will have all men to be saved” (1 Timothy 2:4)
It is God’s “pleasure” that all mankind be saved.
And “God is operating all in accord with the counsel of His will” (Ephesians 1:11).

Change it to read “in accord with the counsel of what He wants” if you like.
Because God says
"My counsel shall stand.
I will do all my pleasure
(the saving of all mankind is part of the pleasure that God wants)
Yea I have spoken it.
I will also bring it to pass.
I have purposed it.
I will also do it."
Isaiah 46:10,11

Job 23:13 “But He stands alone, and who can oppose Him?
He does whatever he pleases.
(the saving of all mankind is part of what He wants that pleases Him).

Isaiah 55:11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
(the saving of all mankind is part of all of which God desires or wants)

So we see God does all His pleasure, He does whatever He pleases, and His word accomplishes that which He desires.
His pleasure, that which He desires and pleases Him is what He wants.

His will = What He wants
What does He want?
THE SALVATION OF ALL MANKIND (1 Timothy 2:4)

Why will it happen?
Because God Himself will see to it that it gets done.

I am confident that even if God casts us into the lake of fire which is the second death it will achieve the age-during corrective chastisement (kolasis aionios) that He has promised to everyone who needs it.
 
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Phil, I wonder if you would like to know about the book
DARE WE HOPE THAT ALL MEN BE SAVED – HANS URS VON BALTHASAR, a Roman Catholic theologian.

These 254 pages are essentially an explanation of why he makes the following statement

“The whole of scripture is full of the proclamation of a salvation that binds all men by a Redeemer Who gathers together and reconciles the whole universe. That is quite sufficient to enable us to hope for the salvation of all men without thereby coming into contradiction with the Word of God.”

As you can imagine, I thoroughly enjoyed reading it! :-)
 
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Hi Roger. Sorry for the delay in replying; I hadn't noticed your recent post.

I am only generally familiar with von Balthasar's work and do know that he was deeply influenced by the mystic, Adrienne von Speyr. His theology is deeply respected.

At issue in this whole discussion is not God's universalist intent, which Scripture clearly affirms, but creatures' universalist response, which Scripture does not seem to affirm. There are too many references to hell, even by Jesus, to discount the possibility that some creatures will choose their own prerogatives over those of God. If spiritual beings really are free to choose, then, theoretically, they can choose to reject God, in which case God would simply honor their choice, the consequence being hell. I don't see how there's any getting around this without saying that we don't really have free will and/or that God will somehow "force" one to make the "right choice" in the end. I'm not seeing anything in Scripture or Tradition to support that view.

I do thank you again, however, for your persistence in putting forth the universalist position. You have shared some excellent resources with us.
 
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Phil, regarding "free will" I agree with Gerry Beauchemin on this subjact.
He wrote

”Tradition has taught that God will not save a person against their will. I agree. However He has the power to orchestrate whatever circumstances are necessary to effect one’s will to change.

Once a full revelation of God is received in the ages to come (Eph. 2:7), men will bow and confess that Jesus Christ is Lord just as Isaiah and Paul prophesied (Is. 45:21-25; Rom. 4:11; Ph. 2:9-11). Who would want to continue in active and persistent rebellion knowing God only wants what is best for them? Knowing the great goodness and love of God, along with the Holy Spirit working in their hearts, these hardened hearts must melt before His glorious being.

It is impossible that an omnipotent God can fail in His purpose so that some would forever resist unconditional love opting for everlasting pain. This would be totally irrational. And even if one were that irrational, such resistance would not arise out of a ‘free’ will, but an ‘enslaved’ will, a will in bondage to an enslaved mind.”
GERRY BEAUCHEMIN

Here is an article that influenced me on the subject.
MAN IS NOT A FREE MORAL AGENT
http://www.godfire.net/eby/saviour_of_the_world.html
 
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"MY COUNSEL SHALL STAND" – K. ROSS MCKAY

"Some believe that God's satisfaction will be found in the eternal torment [or annihilation] of some of His creatures. But John was not speaking of a perverted pleasure when he penned, 'Thou hast created all things and for Thy pleasure they are and were created (Rev. 4:11). God's plan and purpose of the ages (Eph. 3:11) is to include perfectly executed and unique stages of progressive development resulting in the final restoration and reconciliation of all.

God has been and always will be in absolute sovereign control over His entire cosmic plan, even unto its ultimate consummation in perfection. His plan for all of humanity cannot fail. All of His working together of good and evil is in perfect harmony and balance. God's love shall not fail. His absolute power and might insures His completing of all He has willed to do, both in our individual salvation, and in the universal salvation that is sure to come."
 
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