The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Gehenna?


#41

Born Again,

I am new on here and don’t really know how much you and the other members have "exchanged"views/verses, but I would like to know what you think about what Jesus said in Matthew 23. He condemns the Pharisees to Gehenna but also tells them, "you won’t see me again until you say ““blessed is he that comes in the name of the Lord.”” Whatever the Gehenna judgment is/was,it must have had a great impact on these guys to be willing to see the truth. Even though they were “going to Hell” Jesus told them you won’t see me again UNTIL… indicating that they could have a change of heart even going to Hell. Which, also indicates a period of time not endlessness.

I agree that we are in a state of condemnation until we believe, that God’s wrath abides on us UNTIL we believe. Their is a purpose for God’s wrath…helping people to see the truth. I think that is why the Bible says ALL liars will be cast into the lake of fire. A lair has not come to the end of himself yet, or he wouldn’t still be lying, right? We lie to cover up something…not willing or able to just accept our imperfect state, or confess that we are sinners in need of a savior.

Paul told the men at Athens that God commands all men to repent. He said Christ will reign UNTIL everyone is in submission to Himself. Jesus said that if He was crucified on the cross that He would draw all men to himself. If He is going to do this, it stands to reason that some are going to see the truth, though through the fire, and call on the Lord. Revelation even speaks of “torment” being in the presence of the Lamb and the holy angels. This makes a lot more sense that endless torment. I believe God is sensible. Debbie :slight_smile:


#42

Hey debbieboutwell.

I do not believe that all the Pharisees went to hell. I believe some of them came to a saving knowledge of Jesus before and certainly after the cross. No where in the bible does it say that the lake of fire is used to change someones heart to bring them to faith. Please show me where that is in the bible. What we think is sensible or fair does not change the truth of God’s word of Heaven and Hell. The bible is crystal clear… if you receive Jesus and put your faith in His sacrifice for you…you will spend eternity in Heaven with the Lord or if you reject Jesus you are choosing to pay the penalty of your sins… separated from God for eternity…which is the second death, the lake of fire. ( Rev 20:11-15)


#43

and remind me which Greek word is rendered eternity in these passages?


#44

My experience with folks like Born Again on other CU forums is that they aren’t really here to learn and have their questions meaningfully answered. They’re typically here simply to troll and make trouble, and they invariably ended up getting banned from the forum. In fact, it seems like I’ve seen someone fitting the above description use this same name over at Tentmaker awhile back. The posts definitely look very similar, in any case.

This individual certainly fits the pattern. They come on to a forum, continually post several ECT based threads, refuse to listen to anyone who isn’t an ultra-literalist like them, or to any well-reasoned biblical response.


#45

Melchizedek.

Believe in Universalism or be banned Melchizedek? We are having good respectful discussions. I was informed that there are many beliefs on this forum… not just UR. If you are offended by my lack of faith in Universalism…sorry. I do not believe I’m causing trouble or trolling…whatever that is.


#46

Sure, BA. Go ahead and twist my words. If respectful discussion is what you want to call it, then by all means indulge your fantasy there. The only ones I’ve seen conductiing a respectful discussion are those who have attempted to meaningfully answer your ‘questions’, only to have you essentially blow them off. I know how this goes, I’ve seen it many times.

I’ve seen enough people like yourself on universalist discussion boards to know better than to take the bait, so I have nothing further to say to you on the matter. I was simply trying to let my forum mates know what I’ve seen based on my experiences on other boards, but it’s their time to waste should they decide that’s what they’d like to do.

That is, until you eventually get yourself banned…

Pax


#47

Born Again,

I agree. I just think God’s plans are sensible and so is His word reguarding Heaven and Hell. Taking into consideration the teachings of Jesus and Paul, what they said and really what they did not say, and, the original languages of the Bible, I will take the sensible side. God said, “my ways are not your ways, nor, my thoughts your thought”… These “thoughts and ways” that are so foreign to us fallen humans are all about His ability to love and forgive. Not, about His ability to torture people just because He made them. Knowing what I know now, makes telling the old, old, story so much more fulfilling.

Anyway, to each his own,

Debbie :slight_smile:


#48

Debbie.
God does not torture anyone for the sake of torturing them. People choose to go to hell because they reject Jesus Christ. They choose the world over having a relationship with God through His Son. :frowning:


#49

I think we should accept contrary opinions, such as born again’s one e.g., as long as people are interested in a scholarly and respectfull discussion.

We can only profit in scholarly and biblically defending our position, as the doctrine of everlasting torment is against any sound reason and common sense for justice in my opinion.


#50

In the end they do not reject Christ, they confess Him as their Lord. Now what? Are they tortured for THAT?


#51

There is many points in Scripture which show an end to hell and death and God being all in all.


#52

Infinite penalty for finite actions is injust. Infinite reward for finite actions is grace.


#53

Of course, Sven. That’s the key to the whole thing…


#54

Wow… has it really been !!!11-1/2 months!!! since I last posted in this thread?? {squinting at date on my previous comment here…} {feeling reaaaalllly old} :wink:

What’s worse, I was catching up on backposts back then, too! :laughing:

Oh well.

First: speaking as one of the admins, I (for one) am not inclined to ban anyone yet. More on that later, maybe; but BA has been far more polite so far than some other people have recently been. And we didn’t ban them. He (or she) isn’t name calling or cursing in the threads yet for example, or telling us we promote devilish lies, etc. (Since I don’t know your gender, BA, I’ll default to neutral pronouns which in English are masculine, too.)

[Note: this post was actually composed late Wednesday morning, and was at that time up to date. If things have progressed along that line since then, let me know. But I was thinking of particular examples leveled [u]against BA since he arrived.]

Second: BA may not be aware that many of us keep track of post activity by means of the “view active posts” hyperlink (found near the top of the main index page, not far under the site announcements). If he thinks there are people who only keep track of one or two categories, he may only be trying to start discussions with people who haven’t yet seen what he’s trying to say, by multi-posting in disparate categories.

Third: Not all universalists believe the same things about eschatology, nor about prior theological categories which may make differences in eschatology. Some of us are preterists (to give the example most relevant to my back-post catching-upping :mrgreen: --I’m currently catching up on threads related to that topic, which have been very popular recently), some of us are tribulationists of various sorts, some are undecided-or-other. As another example, some of us are penal substitutionists (of various kinds), some of us are something else. Relatedly, some of us believe there will be no punishment by God at all, whereas some of us believe there is still punishment by God on the way but we have further differences about what’s involved on that (or are agnostic about it). Some of us believe salvation is primarily focused on being saved from sin (and we have varying beliefs about that), some of us believe it’s primarily about being saved from something else (death, God’s wrath, etc.). Some of us profess unitarianism, some of us profess trinitarianism (and some of us mean variant things by that from each other), at least one of us is a modalist (though I haven’t seen him around recently), and some are undecided; and for some of us, this makes a huge difference in relation to our universalism, whereas for others of us the fundamental theology is of no particular relation to our universalism.

So it isn’t quite fair to BA, to say that he “doesn’t understand us”. ”We” aren’t nearly so united in our universalism as that! :wink:

Fourth: we do all, however, take the scriptural witness seriously and are trying to understand and learn from it. That, by his own testimony and evidence, includes Born Again, too. (It also includes Jeff, by the way, BA.) Whatever exegetical faults we think others are committing (whoever ‘we’ are), whatever willful blindnesses we think others are engaging in, whatever misunderstandings we think others are incorporating or building their positions from: the fact is that we all know quite well that we are taking the scriptures seriously and trying to understand and learn from them–even when other people charge us differently. Consequently, we should all be very hesitant about making that charge against other people. Because we all know how we feel when people make that charge, inaccurately, against us ourselves. Treat others the way that you want to be treated yourself. Or, if anyone prefers to have no mercy instead, well we were told about that, too, and how God would treat us for any insistences on our part along that line.

Fifth: yes, it’s annoying when people simply assert points as being obviously true when ‘we’ know better (whoever we are). And it’s annoying when, asked for evidence or rationale for a position, the person replies with what looks to us like more ungrounded assertions (whoever ‘us’ is. Are. Whichever verb tense works better there in English… :wink: )

But all of us have, in fact, some pretty complex beliefs on the topics we’re trying to talk about; and as a practical matter it isn’t always possible to give a short, complete answer providing all our grounds for what we believe. Moreover, our own understandings of this or that or these or those pieces of data, and what the data means, and how they logically connect to one another, won’t always be the same as that other guy’s understanding of the same data; and it may not always be possible for any of us to easily say why there’s a difference in our understandings there. That certainly doesn’t mean none of us have, in fact, done our best to understand the material, including in subordinate cooperation with the Holy Spirit. When any of us find ourselves in a position where we’re kind-of flailing around for an answer, not because we have no answer but because we have so much answer we don’t have a clear idea where to begin; then we ought to be able to sympathize that maybe the reluctance of our opponents to speak comes from a similarly perceieved overabundance of answer. At the same time, if we have come to think (rightly or wrongly!) that the other person is someone who isn’t going to treat our answer respectfully, or with the competency we believe we ourselves have on the topic, then once again we ought to be able to sympathize that maybe our opponents’ reluctance to answer our questions stems from a similar perception on their part about us. (Whoever “we” are.)

Sixth: there are in fact people who willfully cheat in discussions; and that’s a sin. And there are in fact people who try to troll other people on message boards for their own amusement; and that’s a sin, too. But we all, like Sts. Paul and Peter, are sinners. (Except for those of us who are not sinners and so who never do anything ethically wrong ever, or not anymore–unlike, for example, Sts. Paul and Peter. :unamused: ) Examining ourselves to make sure we are being fair, instead of unfair, to our opponents, may not keep them from being unfair to us. But our duty is to be fair even to our opponents, under God. If we are not working toward fair-togetherness with our opponents, then we are the ones who are not being righteous.

Whoever “we” are. Whether that’s me, or another admin or mod, or any other universalist here of any kind, or any non-universalist here of any kind, or any non-Christian here of any kind.

If anyone believes someone here is being persistently unfair to you, then you have a choice: you can either keep interacting with him, or not. But if you do (or even if you don’t), your own duty is to be fair to that person whether or not that person is being fair to you. That isn’t an ethical option.

(Or, if anyone here thinks that fairness to an opponent is an ethical option, let me know so I can ban you and save the forum the trouble that your insistence on unfairness to an opponent is going to bring. I strenuously doubt anyone here will think so; but in case I’m wrong about that, speak out now and save the admins some time. :wink: )

As to whether the admins will ban someone for whatever reason: that’s our call. It’s also our responsibility if people are aggrieved because we allow leeway for people to act unfairly. But other people are not our puppets, so we have to allow them that leeway. Also, though God is inerrant and infallible, we admins (and mods) are not; allowing leeway helps protect other people from abuse on our part as the local authorities. That doesn’t mean we won’t ever take action. It does mean that it’s tough to strike a balance between providing for, and enforcing, a civil polity.

But obviously, anyone who doesn’t help us in providing for that civil polity, is lining themselves up to be zorched. :wink: Because we do take our responsibility seriously, and we don’t like it when the civilians are unhappy due to leniency on our part about how people are treating each other. Abuse our grace at your peril.

And that’s all I have to say on that matter at this time.

Less despotizing, more substantially commentating from me next, hopefully, at some time (most likely Saturday). :slight_smile:


#55

If that comment was aimed towards myself, I accept that I have no respect for someone who has consistently ignored all answers with a simple statement of: “Your wrong!”, “You are decieving people!” or various answers along that line. If there was respect towards anyone by BA since he got here, it is very rare.

I accept I am not patient with him, but I warned him three times to change his approach. After the third time, my approach changes. Regardless of the rules, BA lost any bit of respect as he callsl himself a follower of Christ, but says that we are not. He doesn’t even have the integrity to know what it is we believe (regardless if any of us believe the same; which just demonstrates BA has a false idea of what we believe if he thought we were united in everything we believe) before refuting it. Therefore my approach is to call him out for who he is, if it is insulting and rude. It is not meant to be, I don’t cater to make people ‘feel’ good.

Thanks.


#56

Studentoftheword.

There you go again…slandering me for things I did not say. I have never said that UR’s do not follow Christ. What post did I ever say that? Please stop putting words in my mouth. Who have I been insulting and rude too? I’m realizing that I have never come across Evangelical UR’s like Tom, Greg, Jim, etc…they believe in most of the doctrines that I do. Most of my experiences with UR’s have been with people like Gary Armirault of Tentmaker ministries, who is rude to the core, etc… I’m adjusting to this Evangelical UR…we may disagree with ET, but are united in Christ. :wink:


#57

Nobody here has ever slandered you in this forum BA. :laughing:


#58

Studentoftheword.

Slander=words falsely spoken that damage the reputation of another.

you said: Regardless of the rules, BA lost any bit of respect as he callsl himself a follower of Christ, but says that we are not.

Born Again: Again, Craig…where and what post did I ever say that UR’s do not follow Christ? :question:


#59

When you accuse them of not being born again.

Once again, there have been no word spoken against you in this forum. If you paid attention to the discussions, you would know why. :confused: Since you like to play on nuances, I will respond with nuance.


#60

studentoftheword.

the only person I told to get born again was Jeff…after he admitted to me of being an unbeliever. No one else to my recollection that I said that to. So, please stop slandering me.