I was thinking this morning about how (per suggestion from [tag]Catherine[/tag]) a sticky official thread of short cases in favor of Christian universalism could be helpful for visitors (pro or con); but I was also thinking about why I personally don’t like short cases: because we all ought to be familiar with similarly impressive-looking “short cases” that we ourselves know are far too short and oversimple to adequately deal with the evidence and/or principles!
How many of us, after all, back when we were non-universalists, accepted one or another kind of Christian non-universalism (or at least that Christianity could only be validly non-universalistic, whether we believed Christianity to be true or not) based on arguments we now recognize to be far too simple!?
So I don’t want to be unfair and provide similar arguments that Christianity ought to be (one or another type of) universalistic.
But on yet another hand, complexly detailed arguments are proportionately difficult to follow and assess.
Therefore, being an unspeakable geniushttp://www.wargamer.com/forums/smiley/00000946.gifhttp://www.wargamer.com/forums/smiley/00000946.gifhttp://www.wargamer.com/forums/smiley/00000946.gif, I have invented a solution.
Member who are Christian universalists (or at least sympathetic to it) can post their short arguments to this thread. But here are the groundrules.
1.) NO BADMOUTHING OPPONENTS!!
1.1.) By which I mean, attributing unethical motives, stupidity, other ad homss, to opponents.
1.1.1.) Prophets who think they are excepted from this rule, like Jesus and the apostles, due to having prophetic authority, will have to convince the administration of your prophetic authority credentials first. (I am only being half-humorous about this. Defy this prohibition at your peril.)
1.2.) Pointing out errors in translation, context, conceptual logic, etc., is okay – but only one pure example of that is allowed per entry.
1.2.1.) By a “pure” example I mean a situation where all you do is point out the other side has made a mistake without building a positive argument yourself out of the same material.
1.2.2.) Situations where you mention oppositional error as a secondary feature to positively building your own case from the same material, are fine. But the majority of your interaction with the same evidence or concepts should be devoted to building your case from that material.
2.) At least 700 words. No more than 1000.
2.1.) I’m pretty sure the ad/mods will be lenient about minor breaches of this rule, but you’ll be increasingly likely to be asked for a redraft-edit of your entry the further you breach it.
3.) You are only allowed to incorporate one topic from any previous entry into your entry!
3.1.) The point here is to help avoid the too-simple problem, by requiring contributors to cooperate in building a comprehensive argument without restating the same things over and over again.
3.2.) At the same time, topical overlap may be necessary to unpack concepts or examples. So as an opening leeway, I’m allowing one previous topical overlap. It’s entirely possible I may upgrade this rule later to allow two prior topic incorporations, if restricting to one becomes too evidently difficult for building a new entry.
3.3.) Leeway will be allowed for covering different aspects of a prior topic. So for example, if someone builds an entry around 1 Cor 15, but you see something different worth discussing about that same material for your entry, that’s okay.
3.4.) Leeway will also be allowed if you’re covering the same aspects of a prior topic for a different version of Christian universalism. That way, I can’t just stake out 1 Cor 15 as a purgatorial universalist and prevent an ultra-universalist from using the same material and even basically the same points from the same material toward an ultra-u conclusion. Or if someone takes material for a penal-sub version of Christian universalism, I can still use the same material for a penal-shared version.
3.5.) Similarly, referencing a previously established point in order to build further on it, is fine. If I have seven points to my entry, and you want to springboard off all seven, that’s okay, so long as you’re making new points by doing so.
3.6.) If you think your entry just really really needs to establish more than one topical point already established in a prior entry, pmail me or another ad/mod, and make your case for why, before posting it; and mention in the argument that you got permission from whichever of us to reference more than one previously established point. (I don’t expect this sub-rule to be appealed to much: THE WHOLE TOPIC IS FREAKING HUGE!!–IT OUGHT TO BE FAIRLY EASY NOT TO HAVE TO RELY ON SIMPLY REPOSTING PREVIOUSLY ESTABLISHED TOPICS!!!)
4.) Multiple entries from the same members are allowed, but only after… let’s say… four other members have posted an entry. (I or the ad/mods generally may adjust that number later for better results.) This prevents members (like myself ) who would really prefer to post huge arguments, from violating the spirit of the endeavor by sequentially posting a large ongoing argument in multiple posts. IF YOU ARE LIKE ME, and I know I am, YOU KNOW WHO I AM AIMING THIS RULE AGAINST!! [size=50]Me. I’m aiming this rule against me.[/size]
• short entries;
• don’t simply reiterate previous points–instead build from them, or provide new material, or reiterate previous points for a significantly different position (ultra-u instead of purga-u for example);
• be nice.
To be fair (or even self-critical!), we should provide a similar thread or threads for ECT and/or anni over in Discussion Negative. But I’m super-busy today, so someone else is encouraged to go be fair until I get around to it.