The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Genuine Conversion Experiences Part II - Jonathan Edwards


#21

Moreover, Edwards believed that the saints will rejoice over the torments of the damned only in the sense that they will be rejoicing at the glory of God’s justice not the evil and suffering in and of itself.

Why Saints in Glory Will Rejoice to See the Torments of the Damned

By Jonathan Edwards (1703–1758)

[Sermon: The end of the Wicked contemplated by the Righteous.]

NEGATIVELY: it will not be because the saints in heaven are the subjects of any ill disposition; but, on the contrary, this rejoicing of theirs will be the fruit of an amiable and excellent disposition: it will be the fruit of a perfect holiness and conformity to Christ, the holy Lamb of God. The devil delights in the misery of men from cruelty, and from envy and revenge, and because he delights in misery, for its own sake, from a malicious disposition.
1
But it will be from exceedingly different principles, and for quite other reasons, that the just damnation of the wicked will be an occasion of rejoicing to the saints in glory. It will not be because they delight in seeing the misery of others absolutely considered. The damned suffering divine vengeance will be no occasion of joy to the saints merely as it is the misery of others, or because it is pleasant to them to behold the misery of others merely for its own sake… It will be an occasion of their rejoicing, as the glory of God will appear in it.


#22

Here’s genuine conversion!!

Galatians 5: 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

1 Corinthians 13New International Version (NIV)

13 If I speak in the tongues[a] of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast,** but do not have love, I gain nothing.

4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.**


#23

Jonathan Edwards agrees. Check out his book called “Charity and it’s Fruits”


#24

The GREATEST thing is LOVE.


#25

From the chapter “love is a humble love” from “charity and it’s fruits” by Jonathan Edwards

Humility may be defined to be a habit of mind and heart
corresponding to our comparative unworthiness and vileness
before God; or a sense of our own comparative lowness in His
sight, with the disposition to a behavior answerable thereto.

A truly humble man is sensible of the small extent of his
knowledge, and the great extent of his ignorance, and of the
small extent of his understanding, as compared with the
understanding of God.

He is sensible of his weakness, how little his strength is,
and how little he is able to do.

He is sensible of his natural distance from God,
of his dependence on Him,
of the insufficiency of his own power and wisdom;
and that it is by God’s power that he is upheld and provided for;
and that he needs God’s wisdom to lead and guide him,
and His might to enable him to do what he ought to do for Him.

Humility tends to prevent an aspiring and
ambitious behavior among men.

The man that is under the influence of a humble spirit is content
with such a situation among men, as God is pleased to allot to
him, and is not greedy of honor, and does not affect to appear
uppermost and exalted above his neighbors.

Humility tends also to prevent an arrogant and assuming behavior.

On the contrary, humility, disposes a person to a condescending
behavior to the meekest and lowest, and to treat inferiors with
courtesy and affability, as being sensible of his own weakness
and despicableness before God.

If we then consider ourselves as the followers of the meek
and lowly and crucified Jesus, we shall walk humbly before
God and man all the days of our life on earth.

Let all be exhorted earnestly to seek much of a humble spirit, and
to endeavor to be humble in all their behavior toward God and men.

Seek for a deep and abiding sense of your
comparative lowness before God and man.

Know God.

Confess your nothingness and ill-desert before Him.

Distrust yourself.

Rely Only On Christ.

Renounce all glory except for Him.

Yield yourself heartily to His will and service.

Avoid an aspiring, ambitious, ostentatious, assuming, arrogant,
scornful, stubborn, willful, leveling, self-justifying behavior;
and strive for more and more of the humble spirit that Christ
manifested while He was on earth.

Humility is a most essential and distinguishing trait
in all true piety.

Earnestly seek then; and diligently and prayerfully
cherish a humble spirit, and God shall walk with
you here below; and when a few more days shall have
passed, He will receive you to the honors
bestowed on His people at Christ’s right hand.


#26

Wonderful! He should have stuck with that.
Why do I say that?
Because a person cannot be frightened or threatened into love. Into submission, yes, but you might as well be a Muslim at that point.

Only God’s love can truly convert a person from self-centeredness to loving God and neighbor. You cannot threaten that person into love. Edwards failed miserably imo in that respect.


#27

He was showing love and compassion by warning against the terrible fate an evil God hater faced without Christ. It started the Great Awakening.


#28

No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. ~~ Luke 13:3


#29

Here is another ‘conversion’:

The cage was nearer; it was closing in. Winston heard a succession of shrill cries which appeared to be occurring in the air above his head. But he fought furiously against his panic. To think, to think, even with a split second left – to think was the only hope. Suddenly the foul musty odor of the brutes struck his nostrils. There was a violent convulsion of nausea inside him, and he almost lost consciousness. Everything had gone black. For an instant he was insane, a screaming animal. Yet he came out of the blackness clutching an idea. There was one and only one way to save himself. He must interpose another human being, the body of another human being, between himself and the rats. "
“He gazed up at the enormous face. Forty years it had taken him to learn what kind of smile was hidden beneath the dark moustache. O cruel, needless misunderstanding! O stubborn, self-willed exile from the loving breast! Two gin-scented tears trickled down the sides of his nose. But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother”


#30

How can sin be against God? God is invincible. Sin cannot harm Him at all. Rather all sin is against people! The apostle Peter understood this:

The only reason God hates sin, is that He loves people and it pains Him to see people harm one another.

David mistakenly thought his sin was against God:

How could David think his sin with Bathsheba was against God only? Rather it was against Bathsheba’s husband. Then when David couldn’t pin his adultery on her husband, Uriah, by inducing him to sleep with her, he put him on the front lines of the army so that he would be killed. David not only sinned against Uriah by copulating with his wife, but by murdering him. Neither evil act did any harm to God whatever. But it did plenty of harm to Uriah!


#31

The descriptions of God dangling people over fire like a spider and shoving people into ovens aren’t “glorious” or beautiful. It sounds like a comically sadistic super villain. Unbelievably cruel. Being admitted to Yale doesn’t preclude a person from being mentally ill.


#32

Go qaz!!! :smiley:


#33

As I already showed the just condemnation of the wicked according to Edwards isn’t sadistic. What Edwards taught was God delights in the beauty of His justice not the evil and suffering in and of itself. Edwards gets this from Deuteronomy 28:63

And Proverbs 1:26-28:

Again here’s Edwards explanation:

Why Saints in Glory Will Rejoice to See the Torments of the Damned

By Jonathan Edwards (1703–1758)

[Sermon: The end of the Wicked contemplated by the Righteous.]

NEGATIVELY: it will not be because the saints in heaven are the subjects of any ill disposition; but, on the contrary, this rejoicing of theirs will be the fruit of an amiable and excellent disposition: it will be the fruit of a perfect holiness and conformity to Christ, the holy Lamb of God. The devil delights in the misery of men from cruelty, and from envy and revenge, and because he delights in misery, for its own sake, from a malicious disposition.
1
But it will be from exceedingly different principles, and for quite other reasons, that the just damnation of the wicked will be an occasion of rejoicing to the saints in glory. It will not be because they delight in seeing the misery of others absolutely considered. The damned suffering divine vengeance will be no occasion of joy to the saints merely as it is the misery of others, or because it is pleasant to them to behold the misery of others merely for its own sake… It will be an occasion of their rejoicing, as the glory of God will appear in it.


#34

The best commentaries i’ve seen regarding David’s sin being only against God are here:

hermeneutics.stackexchange.com/ … aggeration

Ephesians 4:30 speaks about God’s Spirit being grieved:

biblehub.com/commentaries/ephesians/4-30.htm


#35

Edwards’ fantasies were cartoonishly cruel. You must have a really weird conception of justice.


#36

Whatever qaz. I showed you what he said about it.


#37

Here’s Jonathan Edwards on it:

The crime of one being despising and casting contempt on another, is proportionably more or less heinous, as he was under greater or less obligations to obey him. And therefore if there be any being that we are under infinite obligation to love, and honor, and obey, the contrary towards him must be infinitely faulty.

Our obligation to love, honor and obey any being is in proportion to his loveliness, honorableness, and authority…. But God is a being infinitely lovely, because he hath infinite excellency and beauty….

So sin against God, being a violation of infinite obligations, must be a crime infinitely heinous, and so deserving infinite punishment…. The eternity of the punishment of ungodly men renders it infinite…and therefore renders no more than proportionable to the heinousness of what they are guilty of.


#38

If picturing God as a cosmic torturer works for you, fine. Just don’t expect it to work for most other people.


#39

I see you didn’t deal with Edward’s argument. It shows it’s not torture. Sorry qaz I don’t reject reality. The same God that created nature and governs it is the God revealed in the Bible. His wrath is terrible but according to scripture He kills and makes alive. After destruction comes restoration and resurrection.


#40

If you don’t think shoving people into ovens or dangling them over flames constitute torture, you’re being intellectually dishonest. Again, if it brings you peace to imagine God doing stuff like that, fine. I just wouldn’t spend too much time trying to get other people to jump on board.