The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Would people recommend, "Hope Beyond Hell"?

I have purchased the book in Kindle format (it only costs $1 to do so), since that’s my preferred way to read it (the Kindle is terrible with PDFs.) I’ve begun reading it and am finding it pretty educational so far. So thanks for the recommendations, guys.

Hey Felkor you beat me to it :slight_smile: :laughing: I just got this e-mail from Gerry

Dear brothers and sisters,

I have now converted “Hope Beyond Hell” into a professional E-book
so anybody can read it anywhere anytime. And it’s only $1
It’s a great way to reach young people.

You can boost its Amazon rating by writing a review. Click this link, scroll down to CUSTOMER REVIEWS
and click “Create your own review” (on right side) … 542&sr=8-2

Free Reader software: … 1000426311

Thanks so much!!!

PS: Please forward to whoever may appreciate this

I thought was run by Gary Amirault, not Gerry Beauchemin??? :question: But it does have some good resources, if you have to wade through a little bit… :nerd:

I have read it, and I think it’s an excellent non-technical intro to evangelical universalism. It was the book that I passed out initially to some people that I felt would potentially be interested.

Oops! :blush: me bad :astonished: Your right NealF, I got them mixed up again :wink: :slight_smile: Tentmaker, Yes it has some good resources.

My take was just like Neal’s. It presents our classic EU in a simple form with lots of Scripture and thus might be easier for some who want a more popular style presentation, than does Talbott and Parry, which is would I would give to more serious Bible students who would appreciate their more sophisticated discussion of theology and exegesis.

Done Hope Beyond Hell :sunglasses:

I would also recommend that we add “What Does the Bible Really Say About Hell? Wrestling With the Traditional View:”
by Randy Klassen to the list. This is a good survey of the title question from a conservative evangelical perspective that comes out at at least a “wider hope” standpoint by the end, and has some good study/discussion questions at the end.

Another book I would highly recommend is:

The Gospel of God’s Reconciliation of All in Christ
By Ernst Ferdinand Stroeter
Originally published in German (1915)Translated by J. H. Tonn USA 2007

“The gospel of God. What a flood of thoughts does that wake in our mind! What depths and heights must lie in that if it corresponds to His name! Gospel means ‘glad tidings’ and ‘good news’. God’s gospel cannot be anything else. It would not correspond to His essence if from the first to the last note it would not let happy strings be heard by him who listens to it. It cannot have any evil, rough, or bitter sound in any direction…”

“God wants to be recognized through His gospel. He has put everything in it that He is: What He has, and what He can do… To this task the following pages are dedicated.” - E.F. Stroeter

270 pages, PB $12.95US + S&H

It’s availible through Martin Zender at

It’s a great read. A little scholarly, but great anyway :slight_smile:

I’m (very slowly) reading through that book right now. I may end up doing some kind of review on it, maybe even as I go along, and posting it on the forum.

I hear you :stuck_out_tongue: I’m going to have to read it a second time just to make sure I didn’t miss anything :blush:

Hope Beyond Hell was the first book I read on Universalism. 2 weeks ago. God used that book to open my eyes , so I would recomend it to anyone. His scriptural supports is very good. It’s not seminary level but he does a terrific explaining the use of Aionos etc throughout scripture. The chapter on God’s Sovereignty was Great and for me very convincing, which is something Rob Bell’s book doesn’t spend alot of time on. I would compare the two books like this:

Love Wins - explains what heaven and hell are all about in this life and the next.

Hope Beyond Hell - Provides with many angles a convincing arguement for Universalism and how ECT came to be the accepted view amongst Evangelicals. The Section on Church Fathers is also real convincing.

I found it to be a fairly compelling book certainly compared to allot of the universalist books . it isn’t particularly scholarly but he does present some strong and interesting arguments . personally I believe in reading as much as possible on a given topic so my advise is read it first ! . it’s a must read !

The strength of “hope beyond hell” to me is, the heavy reliance on scripture to make the arguement for Universalism. To each there own, but personally I will lose interest in any book that wants to rely heavily on Philosophical arguements or any other arguements outside of scripture. I think “hope beyond hell” would be a great book to give to a common everyday non-universalist christian that has not studied the subject. Where Love Wins raises questions, Hope beyond hell provides answers.

From my limited reading experience it seems some of the other Universalists books rely a little to heavily on logic or philosophy rather than scripural arguments…and the common church person would in my opinion just set the book aside. Whereas a book that argues heavily from scripture is what the common church person would listen to. Not to generalize too much.

Along the same lines of Hope Beyond Hell is Julie Ferwerda’s new book Raising Hell. She has a similarly accessible, (but I think better in some ways) style of writing. You can tell there is solid scholarship, but it doesn’t feel like it when you’re reading.

No matter what book it is though, they always need a healthy dose of the Holy Spirit into the bargain, to remove the blinders from their eyes.

No matter what book it is though, they always need a healthy dose of the Holy Spirit into the bargain, to remove the blinders from their eyes.

A gigantic AMEN to that!! As much as I use Scripture and am great fed by the spiritual truths that feed my faith, I do not use it to build my doctine and I don’t want to offend, but I think we greatly limit ourselves to what the Spirit would love to reveal when we rely WHOLLY on Scripture alone. It may be bread of life on some levels, but for me, ya can’t live on bread alone. God spoke it in his word but also made it clearer “in” us that his Word isn’t what’s written between the pages of Genesis and Revelation . . .his Word is “living” in all of us. It breathes in us, it speaks to us, it reveals things to us that the Bible can never do. There are too many variances in the written word alone. Translations miss things, interpretations miss things, cultures miss things . . .then when you throw in logic and reason, the chances of gaining spiritual truth from any and all of that would only be through the miracle of God in the first place.

David and Goliath is just a story . . .that’s all the pages of Scripture will tell me. David was ruddy. He was super young when he came into the arena . . .Goliath was a big, nasty, stinky man who’s ego was bigger than his reputation could contain. If I rely solely on the story, all I read is this little guy got off a lucky shot at the big guy . … forget about the fact that the king of the nation of Israel would even allow a kid to come in and fight a battle that would either give them freedom, or murderous slavery . . .the entire nation . . .what kind of king would do that? Relying on Scripture alone wouldn’t explain anything.

but . . .when the Spirit breathes into the story, when the author that inspired those things to not only unfold, but to be documented, the same author is breathing in and through us . . .when “that” happens, what is written literally becomes a springboard, a gateway that leads into an infinity of mind blowing truths. It’s no longer a story about a little kid and a big ugly warrior. Now, it becomes personal. Now, David is “me”. “I’m” God’s chosen kid. David represents all of us . . .not because he’s the little guy up against a big guy, it’s because he is hand-picked by God to manifest God’s will. He represents the “anointed man”.

And Goliath? He’s no ordinary giant . . .“he” represents the carnal nature, the abomination of desolation who boasts, who sees himself as God, who thinks he can be “above” God. His six fingers, his six toes, his spear that weighs 6 cubics . . he’s got the number of carnal man all over him . . .he’s dressed in brass . . .the same element the altar of sacrifice is made of depicting judgment . . . it’s the battle Paul speaks about that is going on not only within “him” but within all of us. In all of us there’s an anointed man in us struggling with a carnal force. If we went by appearances alone, the carnal thing stands head and shoulders above any other nature at work within us

But then . . .a stream comes into the story . . .the flowing of the spirit . . .“in” the stream stones are selected . . .five of them to be exact. One giant, but five stones . . .some think it had to do with the fact that Goliath had 4 brothers, but again, according to the story, there’s no indication that there were 4 brothers backing up the ugly guy . . .it was just him out there. But the spirit is breathing life into this story . … it’s not about a kid and an ugly guy any more . . .it’s shifted . . .my anointed man has an authority the ugly man can not identify with. I’ve stepped into a stream where the spiritual waters flow. I’ve found grace . .the number of five . . .I’ve found grace in Christ . . “he” is my rock, he is my cornerstone . . .in the river of the spirit I have found grace in Christ, I have found 5 stones. I only need one, but because it came from five, what’s about to happen next, happens out of grace. Because it came from a stream and not just scattered in the dirt on my way to hook up with this ugly guy, it’s “divine grace” that I’m walking in. It’s birthing something in me . . .birthing . . .the number “40”.

God uses the natural to reveal spiritual truths . . .it is 40 weeks from when a woman recieves the seed of a man to when she births the child from the seed concieved. 40 days this carnal force pranced around goading “someone” to fight. Inflicting fear and torment the entire time. Natural men cowered, but not the anointed man. Something was about to birth on this field today. The stone is placed in a weapon . . .not a weapon of war, but a weapon of protection . . .and not even for self-protection, but for flocks and herds. This was a shepherds weapon, it put a force in with the stone and was released directly at this huge, intimidating, carnal force.

The stone didn’t hit the guy in the chest . . .didn’t hit him in the face . . .it hit him smack dab in the forehead . . .if there was ever a picture of a stone penetraiting the mind . .this is it. Christ broke through the thickness of the skull, the hardness of mental forces of carnality . . .the penetraiting message of Christ broke into the mind of carnality and . . .you’d 'think" that, that would have been enough . . .according to the story, the kid got in his lucky shot, the big giant oaf took the rock into the head and collapses and because of all the adrynalin, the kid grabs the giants own sword and chops his head off . . .great Hollywood ending . . .but . . .not so fast.

What is the symbolism here? what’s the significance? Why did the author of creation choose to go to such drastic measures? Was it to be sure of the giant’s demse?

I really didn’t plan this, but I’m out of time . .gotta go back to work.

But just think about what you would have missed if you just relied on Scripture alone.

That’s one heck of a cliffhanger. The suspense is killing. Come on man, why did the head have to come off!! :smiley:

I don’t too much disagree with you there , in fairness to mr Talbott [and the like], philosophical arguments are in some respects stronger and I understand the caution that he displays in his breathtaking book regarding scriptural arguments as opposed to philosophical ones ! . you are essentially correct and so I feel I should give more praise where it is due ! I too would largely recommend ‘‘hope…’’ to most Christians [perhaps though this is a sad reflection of the anti-intellectualism that pervades modern day Christianity] but to be fair to most Christians I don’t believe mr Talbotts book is beyond the reach of the wider Christian community

Agreed. Talbott’s book was Excellent and grounbreaking in many ways. That books has already been a blessing to many! It would be the first book I would recommend to some. Some Folks have had more formal education then others and I am not even sure what the “majority” looks like. I am just trying to be all things to all people, or get the right book to the right person :slight_smile: Some may even have alot of formal education but very little in the way of Philosophy or Theology, but these people read their bibles and know their verses. I guess generalizing here isn’t very useful because each person is different. And the best way is probably following God’s leading when the situation comes up on a case by case basis.

Short answer, yes! :smiley: