The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Does Hebrews 9:27 refute universalism?

I can’t say that I do, but I’ve given you more than a few resource links for you to do some of your own legwork in finding these things… happy hunting. :slight_smile:

That verse does not deny either:

1] the lost being saved after death & before judgement, or

2] the lost becoming saved after death & judgement

No, I think just the opposite… It’s given unto men once to die (because of sin/“missing the mark”) - If ECT thinks of the lake of fire as the second death and also as hell… well if men die once and not twice, then it’s obvious they will not be in the lake of fire. I know many CU believers believe those not yet saved will be resurrected and then go to the lake of fire, but I think judgment ‘day’ must surely be a very long ‘day’, and I figure it’s only at the end of that day that all those (still) not recorded in the book of life, will go to the second death - but normally, it’s given unto men once to die… I think it’s possible a very few totally hard cases may hold out (possibly) and will find their selves in the lake of fire with the devil and his angels being purified of all their dross… But the lake of fire was created for the devil and his angels. Anything beyond that, I would assume is not actually God’s will… so why would it happen so terribly much? I do believe there is a spiritual lake of fire operational during this life (and during judgment ‘day’) and is the baptism of fire and repentance we all experience.
God bless. (Newbie here.) :slight_smile:

koine_lingua posted:

Anyone who knows anything about the Greek of the New Testament (and elsewhere) knows that extraneous articles are used all the time, and that very frequently it’s not at all meaningful. (The converse holds true, too; and it’s the reason why you don’t see John 1:1c translated as “The Word was a god.”)

You say “most translators” do this… but who is this “most”? Looking at the most popular English translations, only KJV has “the judgment,” whereas NRSV, NIV, ESV, NASB, NET et al. don’t.

The presence of an article does nothing to suggest that a particular group is being referred to. This is especially clear in the fact that, if the author had wanted to make it clear that a particular group (“those” men) was being referred to, there was an unambiguous way (in Greek) to do this: by using a demonstrative pronoun like ἐκεῖνος or οὗτος… and yet the author did not utilize this.

Beyond this, though, your scenario about the priests on Yom Kippur experiencing a symbolic death and “judgment” strains all credulity. By far the most parsimonious and critically well-supported interpretation here is that Heb 9:27 refers to the death of (all) humans and the judgment that was thought to take place after death.

Also, FWIW: we have parallels to the saying here that humans are appointed to die only once: e.g. Odyssey 12.22, ἄλλοι] ἅπαξ θνῄσκουσ᾽ ἄνθρωποι, and perhaps also the parenthetical note ὥσπερ ἀνάγκη ἁπλῶς θνῃσκέτω in Plato, Laws 946e. Further, the idea of (immediate) postmortem judgment was commonplace in contemporary Greek and Jewish thought; though for a diversity of opinion about what exactly judgment refers to here (or rather when it’s enacted), cf. this comment of David deSilva:

(Though for the idea of immediate postmortem judgment, cf. Plato, Gorgia 523b, with judges ἐκείνῃ τῇ ἡμέρᾳ δικάζοντες ᾗ μέλλοιεν τελευτᾶν.)