Author Topic: Renouncing Universalism  (Read 3321 times)

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arcticmonster2003

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Renouncing Universalism
« on: May 24, 2008, 03:55:27 AM »
Though I once believed in the dogma of universalism, I have by the grace of God escaped.
The scriptures specifically tell us not to discuss, even in our hearts, whom shall go to heaven
or hell, so why is it an entire belief system has been created around it by debating and talking
about without ceasing whom shall go into heaven.

Romans 10:6  But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:)
7  Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)

I don't wish debate, just offering my escape from this dogma as a sufficient argument to those whom
might hear.

God Bless

martincisneros

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2008, 04:04:31 AM »
I personally think it's silly to base a question mark on whether or not Christ will finally draw all of mankind to Himself based on a Scripture that's a warning against speculations about the resurrection, and whether or not anointings that have worked in the past are any reflection upon Christ's anointing at the right hand of God and upon the eschatological anointings related to His High Priesthood.  But, I'm honestly trying to leave a very brief post rather than a verse by verse on Romans.

Anyone that engages this topic, please avoid cynicism and any unChristian conduct or comebacks, k?  I beg everyone to not burn any bridges with someone who simply previously had a dogma and never understood every line of the New Testament to teach it to them.  I too entertained many doubts during my first 3 years of carefully examining this topic until I could find peace that it was in every phrase of the New Testament.

A crisis of faith neither means an abandonment of faith or that Christ won't clarify things further.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2008, 04:08:45 AM by martincisneros »

jabcat

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2008, 04:17:04 AM »
I agree Martin.  I think most of us struggle over many things.  AM, you presented your view respectfully, and I'd like to respectfully ask you how you came to your recent conclusions.  Also, were you ever absolutely convinced regarding UR, or more so strongly leaning in that direction?  I may be wrong, but it seems I remember getting a feel from some of your posts in the past that you were perhaps not a "staunch" UR believer.  In any case, no arguments here, and if you'd rather not reply specifically, I can live with that too.  God's blessing, James.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2008, 04:29:45 AM by jabcat »

martincisneros

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2008, 04:45:20 AM »
And I'll add that the three years that I struggled with UR were the first three years that I was developing a website on it.  An occasional Scripture would come to mind and I'd be like "but what about this??"  That's why I'll often cite the books that I cite and refer people to various titles and online resources because the much better ones like Winchester's "Universal Restoration," Harold Lovelace's "Search the Scriptures," Chauncy's "Mystery Hid From Ages and Generations," and Andrew Jukes's "Restitution of all things" are extremely thorough, while books like Thomas Talbott's "The Inescapeable Love of God" are written less from the perspective of a pastor/theologian, but from the perspective of a philosopher who while using Scripture will philosophically lay out in easy to understand and convincing style what the alternatives genuinely are, and whether or not it's best to go with an alternative to UR.  Though Talbott concludes that UR is the way to go, he walks you through his process on why, what the alternatives are, and where the alternatives fall short.  I've always tried to encourage a greater literacy among Universalists about the major classics like Winchester's Dialogues because they were written from the perspective of an absolute inerrancy of Scripture standpoint rather than the attitude of many contemporary Universalists regarding Scripture.

I love it when I get to read Charles Chauncy, Joseph Huntington, Elhanan Winchester, Andrew Jukes and some of the others who'd fight you tooth and nail over the complete inerrancy of Scripture and yet they'd comb through it chapter after chapter after chapter after chapter to explain UR, and not through some of the evasion tactics of many contemporaries whose knowledge of the Scriptures is superficial and who really can't handle getting cornered with some stuff without becoming uncomfortable and angered.  And rather than dig further into the Word to know Biblical answers for the next time the same thing comes up, they blow it off as the stupidity of the ET or Annihilation believer.  That's dangerous if we want to see the Second Reformation that we've been in for about a century really catch on about UR.  'Cause I'll guarantee you, ETers and Annihilation folks ARE NOT believing in what they believe in through having a take it or leave it attitude about Scripture.  Not by any remote stretch of your imagination.

Elhanan Winchester cornered me in 2003 with "The Universal Restoration."  He answered every single conceivable objection to UR that yet remained in the back of my mind, and I knew that there was nothing to go back to with the old paradigm.  I'll never forget the vision that I had of 1Corinthians 15:28 regarding the final tissues of Jesus' physical Body being recovered with the recovery of the last remaining prodigal son and His bodily wounds being no more.  Whether that's yet to literally happen or whether that's more emotional and spiritual for Jesus than anything that'll ever happen to His resurrected physical body, I don't pretend to know and I won't get a theological argument started over something that Scripture doesn't state or imply.  But it would answer the remaining wounds, though healed, yet clearly visible for all who would ever approach Him.  Yet it answers so much that the ETer just blows off as simply being the eternal state of the Body of Christ. 

I suppose His physical wounds, though healed, would have to remain visible were any to be lost throughout all of eternity.  But on the Biblical framework of each of us being the cells and tissues of His body so that none of His bones could ever be broken, then this makes total sense that the gaps in His wrists, feet, forehead, back, and pierced side would close when the last prodigal had been clothed in His righteousness.

I pray that any Universalists at this website, if for any reason whatsoever things just don't start making sense to you any more and you start coming to opposite conclusions for whatever reason of a failure on the part of anyone here to articulate something with clarity or just private spiritual warfare going on over it, as I'd previously said in the "purpose of this board" thread for the Discussions on UR board -- it was either that page or the similar page on the Christian Life general board -- stick around.  If you don't know how to answer something when you're dealing with an ETer, then allow someone to come along later and answer it to everybody's satisfaction because UR will stand ANY DEGREE OF BIBLICAL SCRUTINY :cloud9:



Edited it 'cause I accidentally said "ankles" when I meant "feet."
« Last Edit: May 24, 2008, 11:59:31 AM by martincisneros »

Offline sparrow

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2008, 05:05:04 AM »
Hi arcticmonster,
I wish you peace and may the path of your life be filled with far more flowers  :icon_flower: than weeds, along the way.
love,
sparrow
"I knelt to drink,
And knew that I was on the brink
Of endless joy. And everywhere
I turned I saw a wonder there."

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.

martincisneros

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2008, 05:20:22 AM »
I have set up a prayer thread for arcticmonster2003 on the prayer board, if anyone wants to add additional prayers, covenant blessings, givings of thanks for them, any intercessions you feel led to lead us in, etc.

martincisneros

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2008, 07:39:07 AM »
I will speak up in the behalf of UR, lest any eternal punishment believers and annihilation believers in Christ think that someone's abandoning of a truth necessitates the invalidity of the truth in question that people bail on eternal punishment based Christianity and annihilation based Christianity on a daily basis, some over the ET dogma and the Annihilation dogma, while others over other issues of faith and practice.  The validity of ET, UR, or Annihilation isn't in it's adherents, but must be Biblically established or set aside based upon other Biblical principles being carefully examined.  arcticmonster2003 didn't say anything in the least to indicate an abandonment of Christ, so a former belief in UR didn't lead to infidelity or a backslidden condition or anything of the sort.  If they allowed that to mean that to them for a season, then that was quite independent of the Biblical truth of the Universal Restoration, but was simply a matter of a genuine Christian having philosophically, but never spiritually embraced the Biblical revelation of the Universal Restoration.  And then I'd remind you of Mark chapter 4 regarding the cares of this life and the deceitfulness of other things entering in and catching a growing seedling of the Word unawares can choke the Word which was sown in them.  If UR wasn't a Biblical revelation to them, then it never became the fear of the Lord to them.  That's the danger of having philosophically embraced it's general principles without being rooted in the heart to how the Holy Spirit holds to it in the Scriptures.  If it wasn't held by them after the Holy Spirit then it was a philosophical generalization that was destined to fail as their house had moved to being upon the sand rather than upon the firm foundation of Christ Jesus, the Lord of the living and the dead before Whom every nation will come and pay homage and devoted service in the fullness of time according to the counsel of the Father's will and the times and seasons which the Father has placed in His own power.

Paul Hazelwood

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2008, 08:29:27 AM »
Though I once believed in the dogma of universalism, I have by the grace of God escaped.


The great thing about this life is that God takes us on adventures. 

I say that knowing that my next adventure could be a very difficult trial that could cause me great pain.  Yes, our God is an awesome God, but we are being taught the lessons we need to know for the future.

Now, if I am in great pain, I pray that I can live by my own words written while in a good mood.   :icon_joker:

Wherever your adventure takes you, remember Proverbs 16:9.

Proverbs 16:9 "A man's heart devises his way, Yet Yahweh establishes his steps."




martincisneros

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #8 on: May 24, 2008, 09:44:08 AM »
AM, you presented your view respectfully, and I'd like to respectfully ask you how you came to your recent conclusions.  Also, were you ever absolutely convinced regarding UR, or more so strongly leaning in that direction?  I may be wrong, but it seems I remember getting a feel from some of your posts in the past that you were perhaps not a "staunch" UR believer. 

After I'd completely rejected the deletion of their account, I went back and read a bunch of their older posts.  One of the things that was going on with them is that they were in a season a while back of the Lord speaking to them about the fear of the Lord.  And arcticmonster2003 unfortunately found too much resistance to that among a lot of the folks here at the boards that perhaps lacked the spirituality to know what he was talking about at the time.  Or perhaps it was a breakdown in communication between them and the people they butted heads with a few times on how they meant some of the things they were saying. 

We're sorta reaping some of the harm, right now, that was done over those weeks or months when the Scriptures weren't held in high esteem by too many at these boards.

I am a God-fearing man.  If our paths had crossed back then, perhaps I'd of been a little more helpful 'cause I know what he was talking about, even if people were interpreting his comments as "fright of a brute beast" type of fear rather than the Scriptural doctrine of the worship of the Lord being the beginning of wisdom.  There are a few posts about them having found some spiritual value in the KJV, and again, I know UR materials that would have been helpful for someone like that, such as Joseph Huntington's "Calvinism Improved: Or the Gospel Illustrated As A System of Real Grace Issuing In The Salvation Of All Men," from I believe 1796.  I don't have a copy handy, so I could be a year or two off on it's publication.  I loaned my copy to Gary Amirault right after I'd first read it 'cause he had said that he wanted a scanned copy of it, so if he actually scanned it in, then Jabcat, since you live closer to him than a lot of other folks, you might be able to have a peak at it if the gasoline winds up being cheaper than one of the online bookstores for such a rare book.  Beautiful, beautiful book, though Gary might have a tendency to perhaps balk at some of it's pages because it's a bit more reverential for the law than even Andrew Jukes.  I'm thinking it's one of the books that helped Andrew Jukes write his book.  His book shows what might be a familiarity with Huntington and Winchester.

I haven't read very many of arcticmonster2003's posts, but that was pretty much his most recent posts from this year.  And Jabcat, I think you're right in your query about whether arcticmonster2003 was ever all of that strong in the UR message to start with, unless this was a much longer process of deterioration for someone who used to be fairly radical about  it and I just haven't bumped into those posts yet.  Like I said, I haven't read very many of their posts.   I've tried to get a sense for where they were letting us in on, on how they were doing in their most recent posts.  Before I'd even gone back and read some of arcticmonster2003's posts, the Holy Spirit had already talked to me on differentiating between those who were building on the sand with a mere philosophical, mental ascent, or those who had dug deep into the Rock and had drawn their understanding from the rivers of living water from Jesus so that that aspect of their understanding could have a solid foundation on the Rock.

After I'd made three or four posts to that effect, I got to thinking "why am I being led to draw such a hard line between those who hold to it on philosophical terms and those whose UR has sprung up within them as an additional well of revelation from the Holy Bible through the power of the Holy Spirit??"  So, that's when I went back and did some reading up on someone I'm really really wishing I'd gotten to know a little better before they ran off.  Now I'm feeling robbed after all of those weeks of "anything goes" having gotten so out of hand around here.

 
If arcticmonster2003 genuinely isn't coming back any more, then I can totally delete their account at the end of the summer when I'm going to be doing a bit of "house cleaning" anyway.  Mostly stuff that people can't see that I've already talked to Gary about is going to get thinned down.  Not anybody's account, unless I wind up having to delete arcticmonster2003's account at that time.  Just other things.  Not anybody's posts on any of the boards whatsoever, so everybody can relax about that.  We've lost enough posts as far as I'm concerned.  Anyway, I'm saying this in case arcticmonster2003 has one more peak at this thread.  You've got 'til the end of the summer if you ever start missing this place and you won't lose your post count from your profile and seniority for whatever that's worth.  Otherwise, I'll abide by your wishes and your account will be gone.  Just want you to have a chance to think about it.  If your posts were thin over the last few months 'cause you were thinking about it, then I believe you.  Just giving you a few more months to come back if you'd like.  If not, we love you, we will miss you, and we bless you and whatever fellowship online and offline that you're a part of, in the Name of Jesus.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2008, 10:02:15 AM by martincisneros »

martincisneros

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #9 on: May 24, 2008, 01:01:40 PM »
Now, I can admit it.... 


That there are times when I didn't want to be a Universalist.  There have been times when I wanted a Hell to take comfort in that someone that I've known of would spend all of eternity in.  But what do you do when there's not a single verse out of all 31,173 verses of the Bible that teaches either eternal punishment or annihilation?  You repent, forgive, and submit to the righteous judgment of the Son of God that all men; all of Creation shall become His righteousness through the power that He has to conform all things to Himself.

Having a heavier speaking schedule, more opportunities, less persecution from well meaning religious people, perhaps being accepted by a publishing house and their editorial staff as a potential new author of theirs, perhaps an easier road towards the money to do most of the things that are on my heart in the behalf of the Kingdom of Christ, perhaps respect for scholarship in other areas, perhaps recognition, an easier time drawing a crowd for starting a Church, and perhaps a few other things happening through a catering to my flesh by not associating myself with Universalists.  I could get into this!  Oh yeah, the flesh likes to be catered to and doesn't like the idea of having to have it's own bleeding Cross FIRST to have all of the above.

I'm not saying that there's the least little doubt about the Biblical doctrine of the Universal Restoration.  There isn't.  I've looked for the permission to give up on people, because after all, Father eventually does anyway according to some preachers.  When you've been hurt time and time again, there's something about the idea of endless damnation or some people being blown out like a candle in an instant and not being restored for as long as God exists again the flesh lusteth against the spirit and the spirit against the flesh.  I've ransacked that Bible afresh when things have gotten a little hard, when the road to my own personal Calvary has been a rough road to travel, and when all of the Kingdoms of this world have flashed before me in an instant.  I haven't been able to find the verse that I could compromise on.  There isn't an "ambiguity 'out.'"

There isn't any way out after you've been fully persuaded of the goodness of God and His plan in Christ to re-head all things through Jesus Christ.  There's no escape.  If God's going to ever use me for any mighty things in the earth that impact multitudes, then it's got to be from right where I stand, with no one else but God.  After a while, though, after you've seen the looks on people's faces, their tears, and have heard the healing anointing in their voices that indicates that God's healing them of all of the religious and demonic abuse of the past that was heaped upon them through the eternal punishment and annihilation paradigms;  when you've seen people healed of all hard thoughts about God and have seen them worship in a consciousness that their Daddy not only can do anything, but has enough moral consistency to reclaim and take responsibility for His entire Creation, then where else is there to go?

To whom shall I go, when these are the Words of Eternal Life?  Where else can I go when I can do my absolute best to bring people to embrace the Lordship of Jesus and then at the end of the day be able to go to bed and sleep soundly without any nightmares because I know that ultimately they are in His hands?  I've understood all 31,173 verses of the Bible in other ways in the past, and yet none of those other understandings of the Word ever brought me the healing that this has.  Nothing else has ever given me the moral fortitude to not only steer clear of sin, but to genuinely loathe sin with a passion.  Nothing else has ever cleaned up my life so much to where I'm genuinely debating whether television or radio has a genuine place in my sanctified home, even assuming Christian programming.  Nothing else has ever made me love absolutely all people freely, fast and pray for all people fervently, and yet empowered me to be more choosy about my friends so that evil company doesn't corrupt good manners.

Through the application of the Blood of Christ according to a Biblical Universalist understanding of Scripture, I'm actually free through the Son of God from my former sins even to the very thoughts and imaginations of my heart.  Nothing else ever derived from the Scriptures has ever emboldened, empowered, and been such a refiner's fire to my life.  Nothing else has ever increased the Presence of God to this exponential power in my life before.  Nothing else has ever created such overwhelming and incessant worship through me to my heavenly Father and my Lord Jesus Christ.  Nothing else has ever made me prouder of my God and eager to testify to His goodness.  Nothing else has ever made me love Him like this!  Nothing else has ever broken the power of the devil from my life like this! 

Nothing else has ever made the Communion Bread and Cup more real and more rich and more fruitful in my life!  Nothing else has ever made me rejoice so thoroughly in God's judgments!  Nothing else has ever neutralized the ego-factor from my life!  Nothing else has ever made me read the Bible more voraciously!  Nothing else has ever given me as much confidence to pray for people and to know that I have the petitions that I've requested of Him!  Nothing else has ever taken away the survival instinct from me:  "if I can just lead one more person to Jesus today, then it's been a good day.  Getting pummeled by that rough looking person over there is a chance worth taking.  If Jesus bled for them, can I do anything less if called upon to do it?  Let me at 'em!!!!!  I can take 'em!!!!!!!!  After all, for me to live is Christ, and to die is GAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I'VE GOT A SURE THING TO OFFER THEM, AS OPPOSED TO THE CHURCH DOWN THE STREET :HeartThrob:"

Am I perfect?  Only in Christ.  In myself I am nothing.  I don't have anything that I didn't receive, and since it's all a gift, I boast of nothing as though I had not received it.  Why don't you receive His free gifts and glad tidings today?  Imagine being free to love because your relationship with God is perfectly healed and because at the end of the day, you're not going to lose a single person for whom Christ died.  Imagine no more nightmares after sharing the Gospel with people that all of your labors might have been in vain.  You can have the assurance, not only of your own eternal life, but of that for all for whom Christ died.  You can speak joyfully to people, and not because you have to, of all that Jesus Christ has accomplished for them; of all that He's not going to allow them to get away from BECAUSE He wasn't allowed to get away from a bit of it in their behalf.  Imagine being free to love and knowing that not a single person that you ever dare to love will ever spend eternity in a burning devil's hell, or extinguished from conscious existence because of the religious myth that the sins of some are mightier than Christ's atonement or determination to drag them into His flaming embrace.  He will wash every single one of their feet.  Imagine that day!  No more dirty feet of all that have ever walked across your path.  You can love them and walk perfectly as your heavenly Father is perfect, knowing the end from the beginning that ultimately Christ is formed in them, regardless of whatever you and I and the Holy Spirit have to do to wrestle them to that point.  They're already pinned by the promises.  Why do you imagine that they're any less pinned by the Spirit, silly?!
« Last Edit: May 24, 2008, 01:25:25 PM by martincisneros »

jabcat

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #10 on: May 24, 2008, 01:26:06 PM »
Good posts Martin.  I apparently can't talk as well or as much as you can  :icon_joker:, but thumbs up!!  Your sharing on this topic is a blessing.  I agree with the fire...I reassured my ex-pastor friend that I hadn't backslid or turned my back on God, that in fact He had placed a fire in me that causes me to actually seek Him and know Him more intimately...I think that's a paradox for ET believers, you know, "if the threat's not there to keep us in line....."  But the "threat" (consequence) is there, just not of relentless, eternal torture...no, God won't be mocked, and we will answer to Him, and why would I want to displease SomeOne Who loves me so much more than I realized, anyway?  Why would I want to do things and walk in ways that hinders my relationship with Him, or at least my ability to perceive that relationship?  What I'm now learning about that "threat" though is that God's punishments are loving and corrective, I may not like it and it may be painful to my flesh at the time, but that He won't cut off forever and the end of the Lord is mercy...that He's a good Father Who knows exactly what to do with me.  God's love and grace are more than sufficient...even giving me the very faith to believe and trust...In Him I live, move, and have my being.  God's blessing, James.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2008, 01:33:54 PM by jabcat »

martincisneros

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #11 on: May 24, 2008, 01:32:51 PM »
I'm not any better of a speaker or a writer than anybody else when it comes to this.  Just give it some time, Jabcat.  The longer you soak in it, then you finally reach that point where the song is fulfilled in you and you literally can "Sing of His Love Forever!"

Offline sparrow

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #12 on: May 24, 2008, 01:59:36 PM »
nevermind.
just gonna send this to pm's.  :HeartThrob:
« Last Edit: May 24, 2008, 02:12:15 PM by sparrow »
"I knelt to drink,
And knew that I was on the brink
Of endless joy. And everywhere
I turned I saw a wonder there."

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.

martincisneros

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #13 on: May 24, 2008, 10:35:05 PM »
nevermind.
just gonna send this to pm's.  :HeartThrob:

Perhaps my "Now I can admit it" intro to my previous post is the cause of misunderstanding for some people who might read my previous post.  Sparrow never indicated that particular line, but it's all that I can think of that might have obscured my intent.  This thread got started on one of the apologetics boards, so I was simply answering it for the sake of others who would smugly presume that there's something wrong with a belief in the finished work of Christ in the way that a Universalist would understand it from the Scriptures.  Because I come from a Word of Faith background, whenever I've admitted the pressures and pains in the past that I've dealt with for having embraced UR, I've been accused by other Universalists for having agendas, for being in love with money, and for a lot of other things that are too unspeakable to attach to this thread. 

If no one else has ever struggled as a Universalist, not so much because of the message but because of the heat that they've taken for it, then I'm sorry to spoil your image of this perfect and perfectly fulfilled life that Universalists that you've known have otherwise lived in your presence.  And I'm not directing this comment to sparrow, right now.  Not in the least.  I'm more addressing this to some Universalists for basically calling me a child of the devil or a child of babylon because of hopes that I've entertained of doing the mainstream part of the Body of Christ any good through the complete package of what Christ has given me.  I don't see many of those folks around any more, but some heat that Eric Stetson took a while back is making me wonder 'cause of how very very familiar something sounded.  If not the same person, then definitely the same spirit trying to circle like a shark to pick off the vulnerable and those who have more than themselves on their minds.

We all struggle in many things and we all err in many things, but if there's one thing that I'm sure of, it's John chapter 17 and Ephesians 4 about the Body being one, regardless of the best efforts of some of the Puritans amongst us, be they Universalist or something else.  Some have said that you'll never be able to pull the Body together doctrinally, but I don't believe that.  You won't be able to do it with a war of words, that's for sure.  But I won't get on His bad side by limiting the Holy One of Israel.  Ephesians 4 includes a prophecy of all of us being united even when it comes to our knowledge of the Son of God.  I don't believe that the barrier is our backgrounds, our cultures, or even our systems of theology.  They all contribute their part to whomever we are, but if there is any kind of absolute truth as anyone who contends for any doctrine in Christianity would generally assert, then it's just a matter of opening our lives to the Holy Spirit through the Word of God so that the Holy Spirit through the Word can do that miracle of reconciling all things through the opening of each of our eyes in those areas where we're deficient in the ability to see and to have ears to hear those things that the Holy Spirit is trying to use each of us to communicate to each other independent of our particular points of view.

Above all things, the Lord would have each of us to understand His loving commitment to us.  If we've experienced the touch of His loving Hand and have embraced His Lordship, then the destiny in front of us of being shepherds of all of Creation is more glorious than many of the people who come to this website have any idea of.  When you die, there is nowhere to look but up.  While we live, there's nowhere to look but up.  For as long as Christ reigns, there's hope for all of us.  That's all that a Universalist has ever contended for, even if something got lost in the translation with the Scriptural proofs and either insights or theories into how all of that would work out.  I've yet to find a single person who believes in either eternal punishment or annihilation to ever give themselves so fully and completely to the Holy Spirit and then soon afterwards to pray that the Universal Restoration would never happen.  Many sincerely contend against it, but none with a right heart have ever prayed against it.  Maybe that in itself will tell somebody something who has come to these boards and is now so hopelessly confused that they have no idea what to believe.  Believe on the Lord Jesus and you'll be saved, you and your house (i.e. family).  Not only from the consequences of sin, but from all of these pesky theological questions that are the bane of us all.  All He said was to love one another as I have loved you.

Offline sparrow

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #14 on: May 24, 2008, 10:58:39 PM »
Martin, Have you spoken to Arctic?
"I knelt to drink,
And knew that I was on the brink
Of endless joy. And everywhere
I turned I saw a wonder there."

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.

martincisneros

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Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #15 on: May 24, 2008, 11:12:31 PM »
Hi Sparrow,

No, I haven't spoken with arcticmonster2003.  I've been praying through an email and in the meantime, all that keeps coming to me are things for this thread and other threads.  I haven't written with such avidity and ease in a really really long time.  Unless the Lord genuinely wants me to hold off, then I'll email them at the end of the weekend.  As sincerely as I've wanted to email them, I've drawn a blank in the email program.  And then I've come to some of the threads like this one, and it just flows.  Either they're needing space right now, or the Lord's up to something, and/or I'll have a better idea of "what" for that email really soon.  4 different times I've tried to email them and have drawn a complete blank when I've tried to, as though I'd suffered a massive concussion.  After a while it's like, "okay, I'll just keep praying for them for the time being." :dontknow:

Offline sparrow

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  • I watch, & am as a sparrow alone upon the rooftop.
Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #16 on: May 24, 2008, 11:34:42 PM »
Maybe he just needs to take a step back, I think it would be respectful to let him do that. I don't think we ought to be speculating and presuming too much...which is what I see a lot of here and on the prayer thread you started. It just doesn't seem like the right thing to do.  Yes, someone pm'ed you with a different opinion, but it doesn't mean that my opinion is suddenly invalid.
Just because someone agrees with you, don't think that it just cancels out what others have to say.

It almost seems like you are trying to force him to come back to defend himself. Do you understand what I mean, Martin? If a person chooses to leave... that's their choice. You can't strong arm them into coming back.

sorry, but this is just the way this has all seemed to me.
peace.

"I knelt to drink,
And knew that I was on the brink
Of endless joy. And everywhere
I turned I saw a wonder there."

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.

martincisneros

  • Guest
Re: Renouncing Universalism
« Reply #17 on: May 25, 2008, 12:48:15 AM »
Maybe he just needs to take a step back, I think it would be respectful to let him do that. I don't think we ought to be speculating and presuming too much...which is what I see a lot of here and on the prayer thread you started. It just doesn't seem like the right thing to do.  Yes, someone pm'ed you with a different opinion, but it doesn't mean that my opinion is suddenly invalid.
Just because someone agrees with you, don't think that it just cancels out what others have to say.

It almost seems like you are trying to force him to come back to defend himself. Do you understand what I mean, Martin? If a person chooses to leave... that's their choice. You can't strong arm them into coming back.

sorry, but this is just the way this has all seemed to me.
peace.


I'm sorry you feel this way.  I don't have a challenging attitude towards arcticmonster2003.  I left the option open for a few weeks for them to reclaim their account at the boards.  I've felt like the things that I've said have been more in keeping with the purpose of these boards than to just throw down the gauntlet like Jesus did when the crowds left and He said to the twelve "Do you want to leave too?!"  People come to these boards all of the time.  And this particular board is viewable to the public who aren't registered.  A lot of people don't have a frame of reference for some of the threads that lament what they consider to be the glory days when anything went around here, when Scripture was rolled up into cigarrette paper and burned at will, etc.

As I'd previously said, I don't know arcticmonster2003.  I really don't know anybody at these boards.  All I can do is represent my understanding of Jesus and of the Gospel while taking into account newbies to these boards who may not have a former frame of reference for what's been said elsewhere on these boards or on the boards that got taken down.  I would never say that your opinion is suddenly invalid.  All I've been saying is what the Spirit of Christ has been leading me to say.  If everybody leaves today and never ever comes back, I'm not going to lose the least bit of sleep about it.  A new crowd would come tomorrow. 

For those who want to stay, and for those who just want to lurk, I'm determined to love the heck out of them, to do my best to encourage them in the purposes of God through Christ, and to do whatever my two cents worth would be in God's Providence to make sure that they leave these boards better able to articulate the Universal Restoration to those who challenge them regarding the hope that they have for all.  I value every person deeply that's at these boards, but I can't control from moment to moment what offends them.  If I thought I genuinely had a prayer of never offending anyone, I might run for political office someday :icon_jokercolor:

All I can do is try to listen to everyone's heart, and do my absolute best to pray for everyone here as the Holy Spirit indicates expediency, urgency, and necessity.  If arcticmonster2003 has genuinely left, then what is the harm in my posting to their last thread for the benefit of others who'll come to these boards?  I would never strong arm anyone into doing anything.  People are free to come and go as they please.  I'm not anything to anyone around here.  I'm not even on the list of reasons why anyone is here.  I'm just like anyone else around here shooting my mouth off for the sake of the whole wide world that's peaking in at these boards occasionally to find out what Universalists are really like, to see if we're really as dangerous as their pastors have indicated, or to resolve questions and leadings from the Lord that they've had all of their lives or are right in the midst of a crisis over.  I can't make anyone be here.  No one's even making me be here.  I'm just here to love, encourage, and challenge to love and good works.

No, as I said, I have not spoken with arcticmonster2003.  However, I'm starting to think that you're indicating that I'm unwittingly and blindly hitting upon each and every single one of the concerns of many people that'll read this and of perhaps arcticmonster2003 as well, if you know anything about them and their situation that I don't.  All I care to tell anyone about is my Father's loving commitment to them.  And if it was in poor taste to have posted those things to this thread, then I'm sorry.  I wasn't aware that this thread was untouchable except for brief goodbyes.  I honestly had no idea.  I'm sorry for all I've said that's offended you and for having offended everyone else that I've offended.  It was the furtherest thing from my intent to in any way have kicked anyone while they were down.  I'm genuinely saddened that anyone took things that way.

 
To prevent further injury to yourself and to arcticmonster2003, I'll simply lock this thread lest Universalists who are quite a bit less gentle and less concerned than myself decide to take anyone to task over the observation about Romans 10 that started this thread.  Because a lot of people that aren't here right now sincerely would rip right into that without hesitancy and without apology if they saw this thread.



I've chosen to UNlock this thread because my reason for having to lock it is now a total non-issue.  The concerns that Sparrow had were further addressed in the Member's Lounge.  Arcticmonster2003 has since started another thread with more details as to their departure from UR, and though I haven't had a chance to review the entirety of that thread to where it's grown to as of when I'm UNlocking this thread, I believe that the initial concerns about my additions to this thread are resolved once and for all.
« Last Edit: June 02, 2008, 11:57:06 AM by martincisneros »