An unkind retort: “you worship a failed God”


#1

Well I said that, and now am sort of wishing I hadn’t.

Was discussing faith and belief and God with a good friend who is very concerned about my belief in UR. He was trying to emphasize just how wrong I was. And in the course of the chat, I uttered that accusation.

Now while I do believe what I said, it is none too kind to accuse someone of worshipping a failed God. It immediately makes him defensive for starters, as well as a bit peeved. And I do understand that conversations work best when we each allow the other the right to define his own position – even if we find their position hopelessly contradictory.

From where I stand though it seems that, were God unable to save all He would be, by His own standards really, a failed God. So I blurted out a truth I think, but in an unkind way. There is not, of course, “his God” and “my God” – there is God. And He either does or does not save all. But isn’t it clear from the bible that God comes to seek and save the lost? And that He is completely victorious in His mission?

What then would qualify God’s victory on the Cross as total and complete? Wouldn’t it have to mean He manages to accomplish His desires (His will) and saves all? Should He lose even one soul to eternal damnation, aren’t His claims of victory hollow?

Put another way, I can’t think of any text which circumscribes God’s success in coming to this earth as being anything less that a total victory for His Kingdom of Righteousness. And if part of the mission of God was to “seek and save the lost” (I say “part” because I think that fits into the larger category of His mission being to make fully manifest the true God… eg see John 17) and He’s successful, that should strongly suggest all are saved.

In a real way then I see all attempts to deny the reality of eventual Universal Reconciliation/Restoration/Recreation as mere explanations of why God’s “failure” is not actually failure at all.

Now it’s not my intent to offend any here by insisting they worship a failed God if they don’t embrace UR, but I do find the idea worth pondering. And in the future I shall try hard to simply speak to my friends in the positive; God is victorious, therefore UR. (Instead of the more negative your-god-is-a-failure…)

TOTALVictory
Bobx3


#2

I agree, from our perspective, by God’s own standards that is true, however, from their perspective God *hasn’t *failed, but has achieved His purpose of displaying His glory and justice (or something like that :slight_smile: ). So most would probably find it insulting rather than constructive :frowning: By the way, I think God’s glory & justice are displayed even more by UR :sunglasses:


#3

I do believe in the eventual reconciliation of all people to God. But I would not be inclined to say to someone who didn’t, “You worship a failed God.” Not because “it’s not a nice thing to say”, but because it is not necessarily true. One who believes that God created people with libertarian free will, and that in so doing God risked rejection by some people, would also believe that He was totally successful in creating people with free wills similar to His own free will. God knew the risk He was taking in creating such free will agents, and to Him it was worth the risk. Obviously a large number of people have chosen not to establish a relationship with God and to submit to His authority. I believe that people have libertarian free will too, but I believe that no one can hold out forever. Sooner or later, they will respond to God’s working with them or perhaps sending the perfected saints to them in Gehenna, as well as the continuing discomforts they will experience there. However, some people think that the lost, because of their free will can exercise their choice to continue to reject God forever.

God will not force anyone to bow the knee. That does not mean He has failed in His purpose. It is in this way, that God demonstrates His great power. He will lead everyone into voluntary submission without forcing them.


#4

Well, I’m with you of course Paidion and Alex, but sometimes I like to paint these issues in the kind of “black and white” that they deserve. For example, how would this parable work:

The tender and loving Shepherd, seeing one of His lambs is lost, leaves the flock and goes out into the dark and stormy night to reclaim (Hey; how about UR as Universal Reclamation??!!!) that lost sheep. Except on reaching that lost sheep instead it replies to the Shepherd “don’t bother; I’m fine here. I like the adventure and I like my chances of survival. Why not just get on back to the rest of the flock and tell them not to worry. I’ll be fine out here.”

We likely agree that any Shepherd who goes along with that is not worthy of being a Shepherd. In a real sense, a Shepherd who comes back without that lost sheep has in fact “failed” hasn’t he??

Bobx3