Author Topic: Universalism prevelent in church history?  (Read 698 times)

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Offline God Chaser

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Universalism prevelent in church history?
« on: January 19, 2014, 11:28:51 AM »
I have noticed that this following reference is cited to indicate that universalism was prevalent in early church history.
"The Schaff-Herzog Encyclopaedia of Religious Knowledge, vol. 12, page 96:
"During the first five centuries of Christianity, there were six theological schools, of which four (Alexandria, Antioch, Caesarea, and Edessa, or Nisibis) were Universalist; one (Ephesus) accepted conditional mortality; one (Carthage or Rome) taught endless punishment of the wicked."
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/encyc12/Page_96.html

However, when I read the actual book citation (linked), it states "universalism was never accepted by the church at large".

I need clarification. Please help..

Offline WhiteWings

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Re: Universalism prevelent in church history?
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2014, 03:38:20 PM »
"Never really accepted" because it was violently suppressed.
It's always how info is presented.
a] When a person is pro UR he/she mentions the UR success in first 500 years.
b] If a person is anti UR he/she shows that the ET church because grew much larger. But carefully ignoring the many small denominations that show disagreements among the ET ranks.
c] If one is against Christianity one can state it was unsuccessful because most people kept following pagan religions.
All statements are true.
 
But things get a bit different when looking at the political background.
Until Constantine made it a state religion Christianity was forbidden and actively hunted down. And still it grew. That casts a whole different light on statement c.

When Christianity became a state religion, it became organized. Roman military precision. At first, as you can read in the book, it was rather open. Two outspoken UR men, even preceded councils.

At a certain point the ones with the power decided on ET. Everyone not being an RC was hunted down. So there was no free choice in religion and that obviously didn't benefit the growth of UR. That caused b to be true.

So everything is very selective. Protenstants for example won't mention they were very unsuccessful in the "beginning" because it didn't start 1500 years after Christ died.


Catholism and protenstantism grew with military power while  UR grew against military power (and was eventually wiped out by it).
Do numbers matter? Not really. Jesus Himself was labelled as a false satanic drunk teacher. And while He had a sizeable group of followers He was far from mainstream...
« Last Edit: January 19, 2014, 03:41:48 PM by WhiteWings »
1 Timothy 2:3-4  ...God our Savior;  Who will have all men to be saved...
John 12:47  And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.
Romans 4:5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in the one who declares the ungodly righteous ...

Offline sheila

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Re: Universalism prevelent in church history?
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2014, 05:56:55 PM »
ww your post brought these scriptures to mind.   Matt 11;12  From the days of John the baptist

 until now[ye offspring of vipers who showed you...therefore produce fruit meet for repentance]

   the Kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing..and violent men take it by force.

     Many will come in my name saying...'I am the Christ"............many will say 'Lord,Lord

  did we not...in your name?" get away from me ye worker's of lawlessness...I do not know you.

      for I know that after I am gone certain men will rise up...that will not treat the flock with

    tenderness.

     David...a bloody/military man..could not build the temple of the Lord........

     Jesus said...' my Kingdom is not from this source...otherwise...my servants would fight."

    for we are not against flesh and blood,but against powers and principalities in high

     places.

     

Offline WhiteWings

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Re: Universalism prevelent in church history?
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2014, 07:12:02 PM »
Mat 11:12 is about the real Christians because it's a sheep and Good Shepherd reference.

David indeed didn't build a Temple, but he most certainly served God and made the Temple possible. So, imo, it's a bit unfair to compare David with the Roman destroyers....
 :friendstu:
1 Timothy 2:3-4  ...God our Savior;  Who will have all men to be saved...
John 12:47  And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.
Romans 4:5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in the one who declares the ungodly righteous ...

Offline sheila

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Re: Universalism prevelent in church history?
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2014, 07:27:56 PM »
maybe not..but Father can/does use each for His own purpose and declarations.....

   David's flesh saw corruption..but not Christ's.   Preparatory work of tearing down what needs to

 be torn down...to build up what Father wants built up..is all within His sovereignty.....

   same with the old law covenant and the new.

   the seed of righteousness is sown in peace

Offline Lazarus Short

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Re: Universalism prevelent in church history?
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2014, 07:33:40 PM »
ww your post brought these scriptures to mind.   Matt 11;12  From the days of John the baptist

 until now[ye offspring of vipers who showed you...therefore produce fruit meet for repentance]

   the Kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing..and violent men take it by force.

     Many will come in my name saying...'I am the Christ"............many will say 'Lord,Lord

  did we not...in your name?" get away from me ye worker's of lawlessness...I do not know you.

      for I know that after I am gone certain men will rise up...that will not treat the flock with

    tenderness.

     David...a bloody/military man..could not build the temple of the Lord........

     Jesus said...' my Kingdom is not from this source...otherwise...my servants would fight."

    for we are not against flesh and blood,but against powers and principalities in high

     places.

   

Yes, as I like to say:  You can't set up the Kingdom through the arm of flesh.

ET is all about power and control, and so its advocates vied for power and control, and got it.  UR lost out on the power/control/political front because they tended to rest in God's provision, not having to fear Hell.  UR believers were thus less cunning than ET believers, much as Jesus spoke about the handicap God's children suffered as contrasted with the children of this World.
Socrates taught Plato.  Plato taught Aristotle.  Aristotle tutored the son of Philip of Macedon.  This boy grew up to become Alexander the Great, largely by slaughtering a lot of people.  That's philosophy.

Jesus spoke the Truth.  He blessed the poor.  He healed the sick.  He even raised the dead.  He died on a cross for us, lived again, and came back long enough to tell us to love one another.  That's religion.

Offline sheila

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Re: Universalism prevelent in church history?
« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2014, 07:58:08 PM »
 :thumbsup:  very good points!

Offline God Chaser

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Re: Universalism prevelent in church history?
« Reply #7 on: January 20, 2014, 07:11:51 AM »
Thank you all for the wonderful support you all provide to this forum! I ma learning so much from all of you! :banana:

Peace!