I think it’s commonly held that theologies that emphasize the potential to lose one’s salvation have a great impetus to evangelize. Those that believe in eternal security or predestination are viewed as less evangelical. Whether these common views are more or less true is dependent more on the individual who holds to them, than to the churches or denominations that espouse the doctrines.
Of course my presupposition may in and of itself be fallacious, but given that there is a kernel of truth in it; how does the assurance of the “Ultimate Reconciliation of All” impact evangelism in our lives.
World views that hold to the belief that salvation in Christ is gained by honest conversion, but can be lost by either sin or backsliding are commonly viewed as the most evangelical and are well known, for revivals, alter calls and an urgency in prayer for a special or second blessing from the Holy Spirit. I took such a walk down the aisle in my early teens, and have observed the ecstatic seeking of the Spirit many times as an adult.
On the other end of the spectrum, I’ve worshipped in communities where the actions of the congregations have been so self controlled, that had you not heard the Word proclaimed by the hymns, and sermon or the entreaty of the Eucharist, or more importantly not known of the godliness and faith of those in attendance, you would not in any emotional sense, observe the presence of God. Many of these churches hold to a view of conversion that is based on the belief in the “Perseverance of the Saints”.
Is a Christian world view that sees God as so powerful that once he has accepted the earnest conversion of His child, will not allow that one to be let go, any closer to the “God of ultimate reconciliation” than the God who observes and even allows that child to backslide and leave the family of God? Or perhaps there is no relationship, at all.
More importantly, to our world view community, what is the impact on those of us who hold to the Ultimate Reconciliation of all mankind, and all creation, in our desire to see the conversion of mankind in this life? What is the purpose of conversion at all?
Are we more or less likely than those who fear the fires of hell should they slip from the Father’s hand, to proclaim the Good News, but more importantly to my personal concern, are we more prone to sit idly by because God will Reconcile All Eventually?
There’s more to this question, but I’m interested, not so much in a theological arguments of the two predominate viewpoints mentioned, as in the impact our view has on us; on our actions. As an example to perhaps to get the discourse started:
Does a Christian parent espousing UR, seek the face of the Creator/Redeemer, pray, witness to achieve the salvation of a wayward child, as does a parent in either of the other world view communities would do?
Is the title of this site truly relevant to the content. Is a church or denomination that is so unwelcoming to sinners that having “Redeemer”, “Grace”, or “All Saints” in the title, is really false advertising? Shouldn’t our evangelicalism move beyond the condemnation of sinners and conversion, to sanctification and love?
I’m too new here to make such rash judgments about this site or even those that take part, but I do know that the church in general has somehow lost view of the Love that was at the core of the revelation of God the Father, through the sacrificial life and death of God the Son. May the continuing work of God the Spirit redeem the world in our time!