Author Topic: Reconcilliation Vs Salvation  (Read 1297 times)

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moss92g

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Reconcilliation Vs Salvation
« on: July 04, 2008, 03:04:58 PM »
In my 1st post I stated that I'm not fond of the idea of the salvation of all men, but I absolutely believe in the reconcilliation of all men.

IMO, there are 3 aspects to this idea:

1) Torment, while not an endless amount of time, is a biblical principle, The Rich man of Luke 16, Nebuchadnezzar's punishmnet, and the lake of fire in Revelation 20.

2) Blessings in time can only belong the the believer.

The Body of Christ is formed during time only, and will be the 1st fruits used as a blessing for the entirerty of God's creation at a later point in time.  This is one of the great blessings of our call that is entirely overlooked by almost the modern "church".

3) Salvation is coming to God without judgement via torment 1st.

I think we all agree that everyone must repent, and confess Jesus as Lord.  If we do that in time, then we will not face torment, as Nebuchadnezzar did, before we realize that God is God.  If we do not do that in time, then we will face judgement.  The purpose of that judgement is repentance, but it is not something in the same principle, as "believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be save".

If we pay attention to what the end of the Revelation says, its obvious that even after death has been destroyed, God still has some work to do:

REV 21:22 And I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God, the Almighty, and the Lamb, are its temple.
REV 21:23 And the city has no need of the sun or of the moon to shine upon it, for the glory of God has illumined it, and its lamp is the Lamb.
REV 21:24 And the nations shall walk by its light, and the kings of the earth shall bring their glory into it.
REV 21:25 And in the daytime (for there shall be no night there) its gates shall never be closed;
REV 21:26 and they shall bring the glory and the honor of the nations into it;
REV 21:27 and nothing unclean and no one who practices abomination and lying, shall ever come into it, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life.
REV 22:1 And he showed me a river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of God and of the Lamb,
REV 22:2 in the middle of its street. And on either side of the river was the tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit every month; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.
REV 22:3 And there shall no longer be any curse; and the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and His bond-servants shall serve Him;

So, we see that even after death is abolished, those who die as unbelievers in this life will require judgement, and healing in the next life before they are finally reconcilled to God, and at which point God will be "all in all".

Your's in Christ,

Terry

martincisneros

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Re: Reconcilliation Vs Salvation
« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2008, 04:43:14 PM »
Elhanan Winchester in the 18th century talked about the difference between those who are saved in this life and those who are restored after the judgment.  His teachings influenced the translation of Scarlett's New Testament in 1798 (possibly still available from Concordant Publishing Concern) to where some of the references in the KJV that get translated as "salvation" get translated as "restoration," and there's a reference or two to "Saviour" that gets translated in that translation instead as "Restorer" because of this very interpretation that you've shared.  It's not just randomly done in the translation.  There are notes at the back of the translation on why that's believed to be best in certain instances with certain Greek words.  For the longest time, that was the interpretation that made the most sense to me.  I'm in the middle of trying to process some recent insights as to what they mean to that consistent Biblical interpretation that I was shown through Winchester's Dialogues. 

Some people try to say that UR isn't a doctrine.  Well, if it's not, then it's no part of my Bible or of my life.  If ET's a doctrine and UR's the Biblical antidote that answers it verse by verse, then the message of the Universal Restoration is a Biblical doctrine.  I think that the idea of it not being a doctrine comes from people being shaky about being able to reconcile the entire Bible with it.  But I'd be it's greatest opponent if there were as few as two or three verses that taught otherwise, because "from the mouth of two or three witnesses let every matter be established."  Some Universalists probably don't hold it as a doctrine based upon how the Lord showed it to them.  And also, their views of the Bible's authority in one's life also play a part in whether they view it as a doctrine or not in all probability.  If little of what they believe is viewed as doctrine, then...

Torment and wrath in the Greek aren't as strictly what the KJV and a lot of other translations that "follow in the traditions of the KJV" have turned it into.  I personally don't really care if it's something mystical that happens in the spirit that makes people really get a clue or if it's an outright beating, torching, and torturing.  I could care less.  The point of the Gospel is to not be one of the ones that goes through all of that; to be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to wrath; to walk in the love of God and do all that the Word of God through the Holy Spirit is telling me to do.  I'm personally more inclined these days towards thinking that it's more a matter of something inherently fearful about our resurrections than it would be about an afterlife destination from my own studies.  But, I'm going to be a part of the Body of Christ and not latter fruits of redemption -- whenever it's all sorted out and comes out in the wash.  There's nothing that I could do about afterlife punishments if they were the most horrendous plagues.  All any of us can do is regret our own apathy in not having shared the Word more diligently if we discover at the resurrection that though the punishments are of limited duration that they're too horrible for words.  I'm not satisfied -- I'm genuinely not satisfied -- that any of us have thoroughly [Biblically] disproven the remote possibility of "severity" where every single life is concerned along those lines.

I do despise the term "Universal Salvation" because it does lend itself more freely to this idea of Unitarianism -- do what thou wilt and believe what thou wilt and thou shalt be blessed regardless.  Of course, I'm speaking of the term itself and not of the beliefs of those Universalists who are the most comfortable with calling their Universalism "Universal Salvation."  Salvation from the first soul to the last is through the finished work of Christ and not a lot is gained of a redemptive nature from sufferings.  However, if someone is riding a motorcycle at 200mph in the absolute opposite direction, Jesus Christ will jerk them off eventually after calling out to them repeatedly about turning around.  And the road rash and road burn is liable to be very very painful.  A lot of people being overly dependent upon human emotions and a squeamish stomach want to say that none of God's punishment is ever retributive in the New Testament, but whether it is or not, it's going to be precisely what's needed to reclaim the soul, balance the scales of Creation where needed, and ensure the glory of God in every situation where an indiscretion reflected back upon Himself.  The Scriptures are clear about some things reflecting back upon God.  Romans quotes the passage about the name of God being blasphemed among the nations all day long because of some of the nonsense.

We often retort at the Calvinist that God is not just a King, but He's also Father.  But I think that in Universalist circles we do sometimes lack a little bit of the reverence due to His Name that He is King and our intimacy with the Holy Spirit and with the Scriptures should never become an over familiarity.  Blessings in time can ONLY belong to the believer, as you've said.  And faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.  The Scriptures are clear that absolutely all must repent, but I think that a lot of Christians have become overly Greek in insisting that repentance is only a change of the mind and never a sorrowing of heart under the New Covenant.  2Corinthians chapter 7 says something entirely different to me.  We're driven by our emotions very often in this life and there is a sorrowing unto repentance, according to 2Corinthians 7, though I'll grant that it's not spoken of often in the New Testament.  And if we're too hardened of heart to become soft and plyable to the rebuke and command of the Lord in this life, then punishment may very well be prolonged in the next life for many quadrillions of years -- although I'm currently not so sure about afterlife punishments being as needed as I formerly thought to where at one point I nearly envisioned absolutely everybody enduring afterlife punishments -- which is thoroughly unScriptural.

And I know I raised an eyebrow or two with the exaggeration about many quadrillions of years, but let's all just make sure that it doesn't take 5 minutes for any of us to repent of anything in this life and we'll never have to worry about whether afterlife punishments are 30 minutes long, equal in proportion to the number of years previously lived, or of such a lengthy nature that if we'd had any idea prior to dying in a hardened state, then we'd of probably lived the lives of very very strict, self depricating, self mutilating monks if by any means we could have avoided that!  I'm almost convinced from my own studies of the Scriptures about no afterlife punishments, but some Universalists who never participate on discussion boards do believe that afterlife punishments will last for perhaps many hundreds of octillions or nonillions of years.  And as Christian Universalism becomes more and more mainstream, we each must be prepared for the possibility of hearing that kind of preaching that'll either be wisely calculated towards transitioning people away from ET, or that'll be the genuine heart convictions of some based upon their own studies and prayerful contact with their anointings at this stage of their lives.

UR could go mainstream tomorrow, if the Lord were willing, and it may be a stricter variety than either Carlton Pearson's or of any of our versions of it.  To get the truth across to the mainstream portion of the Body of Christ, it's liable to be the furthest thing from what it's often accused of being -- a "feel good Gospel."  If the TEMPORARY VERSION of "sinners in the hands of an angry God" winds up being what has to go mainstream to shock the "eternal separation" folks with a stricter version of the justice of God than they're accustomed to in their backslidden conditions, then we've got to be prepared to praise the Lord regardless that at least the "eternal" exaggeration is being surgically removed, even if there's an initial burning sensation with the root canal that's being done to the Body of Christ to get it out of it's apathy that says that people that don't attend our particular fellowship don't really matter anyway.

Offline anti_nietzsche

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Re: Reconcilliation Vs Salvation
« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2008, 06:21:37 PM »
Repentance can be difficult. There are things in my life which I repented from in a second once I was shown it. It really went that fast. Other things took me a long time and I still have slight relapses.

If you sorrow this shows much of your heart and it's a good thing, but I believe the most important thing IS the change of mind. The good thing about sorrow is that it is powerful in producing that change of mind. That's why I think Paul said what he said about sorrow, that it is good because of the good it brings.

But I would not attach a great worth to sadness. There is also scripture that says we should forgive those who sin against the church so that they do not sink in too much sadness.

The change of mind must be our primary objective. Only that change of mind eventually leads us to loosing sinful habits. Which is what God wants, which is what we should want.

moss92g

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Re: Reconcilliation Vs Salvation
« Reply #3 on: July 06, 2008, 04:44:22 PM »
Its been a while since I've studied it, but the greek of 2nd Corinthians does not seem to support feeling sorry for sins.  The KJV is grossly mistranslated, and some denominations, e.g. Southern Baptists, really like to make hay out of it.  R.B. Thieme Jr. wrote a book, Rebound Revisited, where he does a very detailed explanation of the greek in 2 Cor 7, and shows why feeling sorry for sin is not necessary.  Here is a link to the book if you would like to order it, there is no charge:  http://www.rbthieme.org/rebound.htm.

I think another issue with the term universal salvation is that has a tendancy to suggest that people can be disobedient to the Gospel in time with no later consequence.  God has commanded the human race to turn from false religion and to obey the Gospel of truth. 

ACT 17:30 "Therefore having overlooked the times of ignorance, God is now declaring to men that all everywhere should repent,

ACT 17:31 because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead. "

People on the UR side who distort God's plan act as if there is no requirement in time on the human race to obey the Lord, but there most certainly is.....  People on the ET(eternal torture?) side distort God's plan and act as if they have to obey in time, or that its, and that's most certainly not the truth either...

Terry
« Last Edit: July 06, 2008, 04:46:09 PM by moss92g »

auggybendoggy

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Re: Reconcilliation Vs Salvation
« Reply #4 on: July 13, 2008, 06:20:18 PM »
Moss,
the UR people I know don't state that they don't have to obey.  In fact the ones I know or have read all say you do.  In fact they argue often that is God's goal to bring about obedience in the person.  But the difference is that the UR (that I know of, including myself) states that God WILL achieve his goal (in the long run) of bringing this about. 

So to say
People on the UR side who distort God's plan act as if there is no requirement in time on the human race to obey the Lord, but there most certainly is..... 

To my understanding is incorrect.

This may be true of Universalism or pantelism where they believe men are going to heaven no matter what because Jesus paid the price for their sin. 
But the UR do not adhere to "no change is necessary"  nor do they endorse catholic pergatory that "people pay for their sins themselves and then they get out".

Aug