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Thread: Biblical Universalism

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    Biblical Universalism

    Here's a short article by Tom Talbott. Any thoughts on the questions at the end? I was initially looking at arguments against universalism, but I always try to look and see how those arguments are typically responded to. I try to generally know both sides well enough to argue pro or con if I'm looking into it. I really don't see why universalism isn't at least considered a valid conclusion from the Bible - where Christians have reached many differing conclusions.

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    Re: Biblical Universalism

    Quote Originally Posted by thatguymd View Post
    Here's a short article by Tom Talbott. Any thoughts on the questions at the end? I was initially looking at arguments against universalism, but I always try to look and see how those arguments are typically responded to. I try to generally know both sides well enough to argue pro or con if I'm looking into it. I really don't see why universalism isn't at least considered a valid conclusion from the Bible - where Christians have reached many differing conclusions.
    Hindus would disagree with him.

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    Re: Biblical Universalism

    Quote Originally Posted by thatguymd View Post
    Here's a short article by Tom Talbott. Any thoughts on the questions at the end? I was initially looking at arguments against universalism, but I always try to look and see how those arguments are typically responded to. I try to generally know both sides well enough to argue pro or con if I'm looking into it. I really don't see why universalism isn't at least considered a valid conclusion from the Bible - where Christians have reached many differing conclusions.
    Universalism is contrary to Biblical teachings.
    It defies logic, if you analyze it along with Scriptural verses.

    Just think. What's the point of repentance.....and what's all those warnings given by Jesus Christ.....if everyone will end up getting saved anyway?

    There are so many warnings in the Bible.

    Like this verse:



    Matthew 7
    The Narrow and Wide Gates

    13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.


    or this one:


    John 3
    16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.



    Would God contradict Himself?
    Last edited by tosca1; 01-16-18 at 10:20 AM.

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    Re: Biblical Universalism

    You're making something so simple into something so complicated...Jehovah's will has never wavered...He created man to live on the earth, in a paradise, forever...though Satan temporarily side-tracked His purpose, it will be fulfilled...

    “So my word that goes forth from my mouth will prove to be. It will not return to me without results, but it will certainly do that in which I have delighted, and it will have certain success in that for which I have sent it.” Isaiah 55:10, 11

    "Just a little while longer, and the wicked will be no more;
    You will look at where they were,
    And they will not be there.

    But the meek will possess the earth,
    And they will find exquisite delight in the abundance of peace.

    The righteous will possess the earth,
    And they will live forever on it." Psalm 37:10,11,29
    “Your dead will live. My corpses will rise up. Awake and shout joyfully, You residents in the dust! For your dew is as the dew of the morning, And the earth will let those powerless in death come to life." Isaiah 26:19

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    Re: Biblical Universalism

    Quote Originally Posted by thatguymd View Post
    Here's a short article by Tom Talbott. Any thoughts on the questions at the end? I was initially looking at arguments against universalism, but I always try to look and see how those arguments are typically responded to. I try to generally know both sides well enough to argue pro or con if I'm looking into it. I really don't see why universalism isn't at least considered a valid conclusion from the Bible - where Christians have reached many differing conclusions.
    Concerning point #1... That statement is true because God proved that purpose by offering up his son Jesus Christ to death on a cross in all of our places. One man stayed true to the law of God, so we all now have a path to redemption through that one man.

    Concerning point #2... While it is within God's power to create the means of which all people can be redeemed, as he already did through Jesus' death on the cross, it is not within his power to force all people to be redeemed, because people have free will and can choose to either accept redemption or to reject it. So, while he has done all that he could do to save all people, therefore making point #2 true, many people will choose to reject his free offer of redemption, and that he has no control over, given that he created people with free will. That doesn't make point #2 false on God's end, as he offers us a clear path to redemption, it's just a matter of us choosing to reject his free offer of redemption.

    Concerning point #3... It is true, as are the other two points... But God won't put people out of existence altogether... We all have eternal souls, so we all will live forever, but people who don't accept God's path to redemption through his son Jesus Christ will live an eternal life completely separated from God, as quoted in many verses throughout the Bible, including the last few chapters of Revelation, and in the Gospels...

    I'm not sure why this guy thinks that these propositions are inconsistent and can't all be true at the same time, but they all can be, and they all are.
    Last edited by gfm7175; 01-16-18 at 10:53 AM.

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    Re: Biblical Universalism

    Quote Originally Posted by tosca1 View Post
    Universalism is contrary to Biblical teachings.
    It defies logic, if you analyze it along with Scriptural verses.

    Just think. What's the point of repentance.....and what's all those warnings given by Jesus Christ.....if everyone will end up getting saved anyway?

    There are so many warnings in the Bible.

    Like this verse:



    Matthew 7
    The Narrow and Wide Gates

    13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.


    or this one:


    John 3
    16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.



    Would God contradict Himself?
    Did you look at the article? It mentions that you can cite verses that seem to support either side. But in any case, Christian Universalists (not pluralists) still believe in “hell” (quotes because of different terms all referred to with that one word). They just believe it is remedial. Why does a punishment need to never end to be worth avoiding? And it is interesting that Jesus seems to address the warnings to Jews and especially the Pharisees and the gospel with the Jewish audience (Matthew) has the most. As to your specific verse choice, do you find it interesting that the very next chapter (Matthew 8:11) Jesus says “many from east and west shall come and recline (at meat) with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the reign of the heavens”? How can many come to the reign of the heavens and few find the gate to life? Would God contradict Himself? But again, the whole point is that there are verses that the most plain interpretation would support each view and ways those verses can be harmonized with each view.

    It does seem that most of the push against Universalism are the supposed consequences of it. But it also seems that any of them can also be put to the Calvinist since it is God’s irresistible predetermination who is saved and there is nothing you can do anyway. In fact, it seems worse on Calvinism because this is your only chance at pleasure before you are endlessly tormented. So why would Calvinism not be considered heresy?

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    Re: Biblical Universalism

    Quote Originally Posted by gfm7175 View Post
    Concerning point #1... That statement is true because God proved that purpose by offering up his son Jesus Christ to death on a cross in all of our places. One man stayed true to the law of God, so we all now have a path to redemption through that one man.

    Concerning point #2... While it is within God's power to create the means of which all people can be redeemed, as he already did through Jesus' death on the cross, it is not within his power to force all people to be redeemed, because people have free will and can choose to either accept redemption or to reject it. So, while he has done all that he could do to save all people, therefore making point #2 true, many people will choose to reject his free offer of redemption, and that he has no control over, given that he created people with free will. That doesn't make point #2 false on God's end, as he offers us a clear path to redemption, it's just a matter of us choosing to reject his free offer of redemption.

    Concerning point #3... It is true, as are the other two points... But God won't put people out of existence altogether... We all have eternal souls, so we all will live forever, but people who don't accept God's path to redemption through his son Jesus Christ will live an eternal life completely separated from God, as quoted in many verses throughout the Bible, including the last few chapters of Revelation, and in the Gospels...

    I'm not sure why this guy thinks that these propositions are inconsistent and can't all be true at the same time, but they all can be, and they all are.
    You seem to deny point #2. You are saying he cannot achieve his redemptive purpose because his grace is resistible by man’s freedom. Calvinists would argue that it is irresistible (God's end is the only end that matters).

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    Re: Biblical Universalism

    Quote Originally Posted by thatguymd View Post
    You seem to deny point #2. You are saying he cannot achieve his redemptive purpose because his grace is resistible by man’s freedom. Calvinists would argue that it is irresistible (God's end is the only end that matters).
    You are slightly mistaken of what I am saying. I am indeed saying that man can and will resist God's grace by their own free will, but that does not mean that God did not simultaneously fully achieve his redemptive purpose. He offered up his son on the cross for us all. He gave all of us a clear pathway to him through Jesus Christ. That makes point #2 true.

    The only way that he could force all of us to accept his grace is if he did not create us with free will to begin with, which if that were the case, then our current discussion about point #2 wouldn't be happening because there wouldn't be sin and we wouldn't need to be redeemed. We would be robots, but God didn't want us to be robots; he wanted us to have free will, so he created us with free will.

    Does this further clarify my stance, that I am not denying point #2, or any of the points?

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    Re: Biblical Universalism

    Quote Originally Posted by gfm7175 View Post
    You are slightly mistaken of what I am saying. I am indeed saying that man can and will resist God's grace by their own free will, but that does not mean that God did not simultaneously fully achieve his redemptive purpose. He offered up his son on the cross for us all. He gave all of us a clear pathway to him through Jesus Christ. That makes point #2 true.

    The only way that he could force all of us to accept his grace is if he did not create us with free will to begin with, which if that were the case, then our current discussion about point #2 wouldn't be happening because there wouldn't be sin and we wouldn't need to be redeemed. We would be robots, but God didn't want us to be robots; he wanted us to have free will, so he created us with free will.

    Does this further clarify my stance, that I am not denying point #2, or any of the points?
    I believe I understand what you are trying to say. But #2 is “It is within God's power to achieve his redemptive purpose for the world”. You need to remember that #1 is “It is God's redemptive purpose for the world (and therefore his will) to reconcile all sinners to himself”. #1 states the redemptive purpose in #2. It seems that you need to slightly alter that purpose to be “make reconciliation available to all sinners” rather than having his purpose be the actual reconciliation of all sinners. So maybe you actually disagree with #1. But Christians that mention free will, usually go against #2 and want to affirm the prima facie support for #1 by the verses mentioned in the article.

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    Re: Biblical Universalism

    Quote Originally Posted by thatguymd View Post
    Did you look at the article? It mentions that you can cite verses that seem to support either side. But in any case, Christian Universalists (not pluralists) still believe in “hell” (quotes because of different terms all referred to with that one word). They just believe it is remedial. Why does a punishment need to never end to be worth avoiding? And it is interesting that Jesus seems to address the warnings to Jews and especially the Pharisees and the gospel with the Jewish audience (Matthew) has the most. As to your specific verse choice, do you find it interesting that the very next chapter (Matthew 8:11) Jesus says “many from east and west shall come and recline (at meat) with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the reign of the heavens”? How can many come to the reign of the heavens and few find the gate to life? Would God contradict Himself? But again, the whole point is that there are verses that the most plain interpretation would support each view and ways those verses can be harmonized with each view.

    It does seem that most of the push against Universalism are the supposed consequences of it. But it also seems that any of them can also be put to the Calvinist since it is God’s irresistible predetermination who is saved and there is nothing you can do anyway. In fact, it seems worse on Calvinism because this is your only chance at pleasure before you are endlessly tormented. So why would Calvinism not be considered heresy?
    What verses did it say support universalism? Can you cite them?

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