Define Universalism

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Gregory Perry Sr., Sep 9, 2007.

  1. Gregory Perry Sr.

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    :saint: :wavey: While reading Rippon's thread on the Blood of Christ I came upon a mention of "universalism"(obviously from the calvinist frame of reference). Now I know,as anyone with even a shred of balanced Biblical sense knows, that the idea that ALL will be saved is pure rubbish(but I don't personally believe in a "limited atonement"). Just a casual glance around this defiled world we live in is evidence to the contrary. I do personally believe in both a universal church(the worldwide church of the first-born,the Lord Jesus Christ) and the local church(local assemblies of believers gathered for fellowship and service to the Lord).I firmly believe the Word of God(at least the KJV) clearly teaches both.However, I'll be happy to sit back and watch and learn while some of you more learned than I offer some coherent definitions(biblical please) as to what Universalism is or is not....or refute it if that be the case. I'll comment if need be. Thanks in advance for your opinions.

    Greg Perry Sr.
     
  2. tinytim

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    In my simple mind, Universalism means that every person born will be saved...

    Which is wrong.
     
  3. Amy.G

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    That's what I understand it to mean, but it is totally unbiblical.
     
  4. KenH

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    I found this definition of Christian universalism:

    "Christian Universalism is the teaching that God, through the atonement of Jesus, will ultimately bring reconciliation between God and all people throughout history. This reconciliation will occur regardless of whether they have trusted in or rejected Jesus as savior during their lifetime. This universal redemption will be realized in the future where God will bring all people to repentance. This repentance can happen while a person lives or after he has died and lived again in the millennium or some future state."

    - www.loveallpeople.org/christianuniversalist.html


    There are other types of universalism such as Unitarianism.
     
  5. rjprince

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    I am watching this one with interest, as I know of no other type of "universalism" than defined above, which is thoroughly against clear teaching in the BOOK.

    BTW, Great to see you GPS!
     
  6. TCGreek

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    If Christian universalism or whatever we wish to call it is biblical, then we need to reinterpret all of Scripture and rewrite all of our theologies and make some serious apologies to the likes of Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin.
     
  7. tinytim

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    Man o man, we may have just stumbled onto something that every Baptist member of BB agrees with!!!

    It's a Miracle!!!!
     
  8. Tom Butler

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    Not only that, but let's bring our missionaries home, cancel all our revivals and soul--winning efforts.. They're all nice, but totally unnecessary
     
  9. ReformedBaptist

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    As stated above, that is how I understand universalism. It is a damnable heresy.
     
  10. saturneptune

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    So does that mean you will start giving your tithe (and offering) to the universal church. When you do, make it out in care of me.

    Seriously, there is a big difference in the definition the first poster said (all saved Christians) and the other in the later posts that all people saved (totally unBiblical). While the first definition might exist in theory, Brother Tom once had the best observation on the universal church I ever heard. They never sent a missionary, they never taught a Sunday School lesson, preached a sermon, visted the lost, helped the needy and sick, or any other ministry. The local church is the focal point of Christianity in action.

    If going by the second defintion, I have to agree with RB, amazing is that is.
     
    #10 saturneptune, Sep 9, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 9, 2007
  11. Brother Bob

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    I don't know if I agree or not Tim, I had a universal joint go out in my car once. What if the universal part goes out, what have you got left. Ha, the saved!!!
     
  12. Tom Butler

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    My problem is that I can't figure out the purpose of a universal church. The local congregation is perfectly qualified and able to carry out the Great Commission, administer the ordinances, promote fellowship and worship. The imaginary universal church actually does none of those things, nor can it.

    Not only that it is fractured beyond repair this side of heaven, riddled with error and heresy, and useless an an instrument for God to use.

    The Greek word for church suggests that the ecclesia assembles. Since the universal church never does that, some other word must be found to describe the universal whatever.

    Greg, I hope this doesn't hijack the thread, since it seems you're more intereted in universalism. But since you included it in OP, I felt it was okay to respond.
     
  13. Tom Butler

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    You posted about the same time I was typing, so I didn't see this at first.

    Sorry saturn, since we are both supposed to be in that big universal church, I get to keep my money and so do you. Since it doesn't do anything, it needs no money. Benny Hinn no doubt would disagree.
     
  14. saturneptune

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    Another point, the church in the early part of Acts, one church guided by one Spirit. This was the local church that assembled at the start of all this. Other local churches formed quite rapidly. It was still local churches with the same Gospel and belief. We as humans have created all the denominations over the last 2000 years, not because the Gospel spread, but because we interpreted the Scripture different or you did not agree with me.

    It seems to me that the universal church has very little meaning today, trying to connect all the denominations together with believers. Some denominations are cults, and some border on it. Each has his own opinion. No doubt many will be represented in heaven, but some, few if any.

    It seems the universal church had much more meaning at the beginning of the NT if it ever had any meaning, that is, before Jesus returns.
     
  15. Tom Butler

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    Actually, it started earlier than Acts. The first church, established by Jesus during his earthly ministry was guided by the Son of God. It was a traveling group at first, and in almost constant assembly until it settled in Jerusalem following Jesus resurrection and ascension. Jesus spent much time teaching this core group of disciples who were the material of the first church.

    He left them with the ordinances, a commission and a high degree of unity in doctrine and in purpose. It didn't take long for false teachers to make their move, and that little glitch with Ananias and Saphira emerged as well.
     
  16. Allan

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    We're not going to go into THAT again are we :laugh:

    That was an interesting thread but one heck of a :BangHead:
    Go for it Tom, let'em have it :laugh:
     
  17. blackbird

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    Getting in late on this conversation

    but

    I like what Tiny Tim has to say here

    but

    I have always been under the impression that universalism is the idea that every person born IS saved (or is SAFE, whichever that person prefers to think!!) and there is no need of salvation

    Which is also wrong

    Good post, TT!!

    Bro. David
     
    #17 blackbird, Sep 10, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 10, 2007
  18. Tom Butler

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    Hi Allan,

    I try not to ride the universal church horse ad infinitum, since it's been discussed before. But the OP brought it up, and you know me--I get this irrestible urge. I'm sorta like you. There are certain things I can't let go unchallenged.

    I know this is a hot button for some. I had a fella tell me that if there was no such thing as the universal church, he'd quit going to church.


    And I also know a huge chunk of eschatology hangs on the idea of the "Church." If there's no such thing, down goes the house of cards.

    But I try to do it with a light touch. Feelings get hurt so easily, as you know.

    For late arrivers, go back to post #16.
     
  19. Jkdbuck76

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    I watched a show on PBS (Pretty Boring Stufff) yesterday called "I Believe" where some journalist interviews people of different religions.

    They had a woman associate pastor from All Souls Church in Louisville, KY. It is a Universalist Unitarian "church". They also had some other lady and her title was Minister of Social Justice.

    In any case, the Universalists and the Unitarians merged in 1961 because they were both dying out. So this ultra-liberal Frankenchurch (made up of dead parts jammed together to make some grotesque unliving alive thing) has no crosses or any other religious symbols which would exclude people. They have gay couples and people of all races ( I have NO problem multi races in a congregation....we're ALL one blood) and these two women pastors were practically breaking their arms patting themselves on their back! It was a definite SMUG ALERT in effect.

    In any case, the assistant pastorette mentioned that the unitarians concentrated on the oneness of god (because orthodox christianity has for so long emphasized the trinity--which was a dead giveaway that this lady doesn't grasp the trinity concept.

    She said that the Universalists believe that god is too good to damn people to hell and that the Unitarians believed that people themselves are too good to be damned to hell by god, or vice versa.

    She admitted that they don't do a good job of explaining evil (like 9-11 or the Virginia Tech massacre) other than saying that "We believe that there is a spark of the divine in each of us and that people are inherrently good and when people do things like the Virginia Tech massacre, well that is because they have lost touch with the inner goodness."

    Apparently, when she went to seminary for lady preachers, they must have skipped over Matthew 15.

    The whole thing made me sick. She was a nice enough lady, but terribly confused.

    Oh yeah, and my wife's cousin was married in a church just like it in Cincy. And I refused to bow and pray with the effeminate male minister that married them. The guy sounded sissier than Charles Nelson Reilly. He would NOT pray in the name of Jesus....not even once! Dead giveaway that what I was in was no church at all.

    Adrian Rogers once said that if all people would eventually be saved, then he would have no respect for a God who would let His Son die an agonizing death on the cross needlessly.

    We are sinners. And everytime I hear this "we all have a spark of the divine in all of us" garbage, I'd like to know where in the Bible it says it.
     
    #19 Jkdbuck76, Sep 10, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 10, 2007
  20. webdog

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    Can someone tell me what the purpose of a universalist church is? We have a local church that advertises in the local paper, and I'm at a loss. If all mankind will be in Heaven...why have a church for only those who believe this? It's like having a private club open to the public. :laugh:
     

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