The use of "rehabilitative" & "retributive" relative to UR


, Luke"]While not exhaustive, this google book search for the terms “rehabilitative”, “retributive” and “universalism” show us that in the post-Puritan hey-day of early evangelicalism “retributive” was a term more commonly employed than the “rehabilitative” but then almost in parallel with the Industrial Revolution “retributive” fell out of favour and rehabilitative became more common. But what’s most fascinating is that “universalism” has a similar upward trajectory to “rehabilitative” and then peaks shortly after “rehabilitative” peaks! This correlation is no doubt due to the fact that Universalism emphasises God’s rehabilitative judgement. (Only printed material is included in the search.)Interesting, not sure what it means though for the future. Maybe we are coming to a more balanced view that punishment is a combination??


Alex, your thread title is a little misleading, it’s not “Universal Reconciliation” (UR) that’s in the graph but “universalism.”


I wonder if the word “rehabilitative” was much in use at all until more recent times? I modified to include “restorative” and got this:

So I’m not sure what exactly the implications are, but it’s interesting anyway!




So it looks like the word was coming into wider use in conjunction with the dates shown on the graph.



Sorry there’s a character limit on titles, and that was the closest I could get to your title :blush:


So… the graph isn’t (or may not be) all that relevant to UR?


Notably, except for a shallow inverse relationship from the mid-1860s to the mid-1880s, the data suggests that “universalism” and “retributive” tend to have a parallel increase, probably one in response to the other (which in turn naturally tends to involve reference of the opposition, too.)


That statement raises the interesting issue of nomenclature; that “Universal Reconciliation” seems to be the preferred term of some Universalists but not the commonly used one by the wider culture.


I hadn’t noticed that, but I think you’re probably right. Maybe it’s because “Universalism” & “Universalist” are single words, rather than two, so it’s quicker to write and easier for remember for people :stuck_out_tongue: :wink: