First, here's a bit about Emanuel Swedenborg:
"Emanuel Swedenborg (born Swedberg) (January 29, 1688 – March 29, 1772) was a Swedish scientist, philosopher, seer, and theologian. Swedenborg had a prolific career as an inventor and scientist. Then at age fifty-six he entered into a spiritual phase of his life, where he experienced visions of the spiritual world and claimed to have talked with angels, devils, and spirits by visiting heaven and hell. He claimed to be directed by God, the Lord Jesus Christ to reveal the doctrines of His second coming....
By 1744, in the Netherlands, Swedenborg had completed publication of his scientific works. Shortly thereafter he travelled once again to London. Around this time he began having strange dreams. It appears in hindsight as though his mind was being assaulted by the diametrically opposed powers of belief and disbelief. He was dreaming about angelic states and about demonic states, about spiritual things and material, and was often very frightened. All these dreams he analyzed and wrote down in a notebook, found a century later and published as Journal of Dreams...
In October 1744 he was instructed by the Lord to abandon his old career as a scientist and pursue a new one in which he would write about spiritual things. He soon began working on The Worship and Love of God which was published in 1745.
According to Swedenborg's own account, the Lord revealed to him the doctrine for His second coming, by means of which He would establish the New Church. God commissioned him to do this work and opened his sight to the spiritual world, permitting him to see the heavens and the hells, and to converse with angels and spirits for many years."
And now let's look at "Swedenborg dude's" post:
SD: "Swedenborg claims to have been revealed to directly by The Lord God Jesus Christ."
PM: So? So does Joseph Smith. So does the apostle Paul. They all have contradictory revelations, so how do we distinguish who's telling the truth here? What standard do we use to determine who is speaking for Jesus, and who is speaking against him? How do we know that Swedenborg was not visited by either (a) a demon or (b) his own imagination?
SD: "He claims his revelation is similar to that of all those revealed to in the Bible and for other religions down through history. He mentions a book of the Ancients of Greater Tartary as a previous Divine revelation."
1) All these religions are contradictory. Jesus says that no one comes to the Father, except through Him (John 14:6). But "other religions" deny this. Moreover, who is Jesus. The Muslim's do not believe that he is God, and the Mormons believe that he is a god, among many. The Christians believe that He is fully God, but that there are distinct persons within the Godhead. Furthermore, according the Christians, the Son took on a human nature and that the law keeping and death of a full man is required to turn away the wrath of God. But, Swedenborgianism denies this and the atonement. Thus to mix contradictory religions does not somehow, magically, take away contradictions.
2) Or, is this "similarity" so vague as to be uninteresting? That is, Swedenborg speaks of a "god" and of "heaven" and of "angels," and since other religions use these same words, never mind the concepts behind them, it's now "similar" to them. Okay, but this tells me next to nothing about Swedenborgianism.
3. Why care what he claims? Maybe he was crazy?
4. He claims to have contacted dead people. But Jehovah expressly condemns this: Lev. 19:31; Ex. ch 7-8; Deut. 18:10; Ex. 22:18; Isa. 8:19-20. Why was Swedenborg exempt? Indeed, if he's just revealing what has been revealed before him then he's showing that his religion is not of God, or, the Bible is wrong. but he says he's following the Bible. So, either Swedenborg is following the Bible, in which case he's wrong to speak to people like Plato and Augustine (assuming he even did), or, he's not following the Bible but claims he is. Either way it looks like he's wrong.
SD: "His God is not multiple -- the opposite -- he is the ultimate monotheist. That is clear from his writings."
PM: But if an all knowing "god" revealed things to Swedenborg, why this huge blunder? Christians do not believe in "multiple gods." We are "monotheists." We are "ultimate monotheists." The proper distinction is to say his god belief was a monotheistic and monopersonalistic. And so this is enough to condemn him, or, maybe his "Jesus" can reveal errors?
SD: "His God is omnipotent, but cannot act contrary to His will. That is, God cannot do evil."
SD: "And God cannot take away our spiritual freedoms since His will is to provide us with spiritual freedom to choose to love Him or choose to love ourselves."
Jesus says, "No man can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him" (John 6:44).
So, NO men CAN come to Jesus. This means no men are ABLE to come to Jesus.
Swedenborg believesthat all men are able to come to Jesus. Unless what? Unless they "freely choose Him?" No. Unless the Father draws that man. The Father chooses who to draw and who to leave in his rebellion. Will all men be drawn? No. Because all who are drawn by the Father are raised by the Father on the last day. Since universalism is false, the proposition that all men are drawn is false.
So, this isn't Jesus' teaching, it's Swedenborg's. Since it contradicts Jesus' teachings, how can Swedenborg claim unity with Jesus? It looks as if Swedenborg was just making this stuff up.
Furthermore, to say that God cannot take away our freedoms is plain false. We know that Jehovah determined that Joseph would be sold in to slavery. God used the choices of Joseph's brother's to accomplish His plan. Could the brothers have thwarted God's plan? We also know that it is Jehovah who hardened pharaoh’s heart. Why would he do that to neutral willed pharaoh?
Lastly, what about in heaven? Can men be evil and sin in heaven? if they always have this free will that God has willed that they have, then even in heaven they need to have the moral ability to do evil!
SD: "Taking that away compels us to love Him, or leaves us out in the cold no matter what(Calvanism) -- not a spiritual worldview that I want to be a part of."
PM: But that fact that you don't want to be a part of the biblical (Calvinistic) worldview has no bearing on whether it's true or not. Secondly, if God cannot take a nature away then you could still sin in heaven. If God is just he would have to punish that. Indeed, if you "choose" to not love Him anymore, then would he send you to hell? If so, what assurance do you have that even if you make it to heaven you'll stay there?
SD: "Swedenborg claims that The Lord revealed the solution to this as the Doctrine of Permission. God doesn't deny us the choice of evil, if that is what we want. He permits us to turn away from Him if we so desire. Otherwise we are automatons with no free will of our own - machines really."
PM: Again, it doesn't really matter what Swedenborg claims.
If your choices are uncaused are they irrational then? And, how do you have events that have a beginning that are uncaused? Indeed, if Swedenborg's god is omniscient, then if he knows that you'll do X in the future, then you will do X in the future. Is not-X a real possibility? That is, if you did not-X then Swedenborg's god didn't know it, since one can't know falsehoods. If you can't do not-X, then how are you free in the libertarian sense? Is open theism your out?
Lastly, to mischaracterize the Calvinist position seems odd, again for the reasons stated above. Why would a perfect god reveal to Swedenborg a straw man position of Calvinism? Men do what they desire to do, they are not coerced, and that's what's required for freedom. Men are "able" to do otherwise in the metaphysical sense, but not the ethical sense. For example, it was prophesied that the bones of Jesus would not be broken. Does this mean Jesus had steel has his skeletal structure? Or, did he have real human bones? If they were real human bones, then they were breakable. Likewise, men have the metaphysical ability, i.e., they "can" move their arms this way or that, but they are ethically slaves to their sinful nature and will always act in accordance with that nature. They do not have the "ability" to act contrary to this nature since they are described as "dead men." Dead men "can't" do anything. Unless, of course, they are regenerated.
SD: "Swedenborg taught that the doctrine of faith alone is what has spiritually destroyed the Christian churches. He teaches that you can NOT win Heaven on merit - on that we agree. But he also teaches that you will NOT be a Heavenly person unless you do good as of yourself, knowing that it is the Lord who is able to do good through you."
PM: Sounds like more basic theological confusions. Here, justification and sanctification are confused.
If you cannot merit heaven then why do you have to do good works in order to enter heaven?
Sola fide does not deny that works are a necessary outcome of saving faith. That is, no one will enter heaven if they don't bear fruit, but this is because all those saved will bear good fruit. Works are an evidence of true saving faith. Faith alone does not deny that works are necessary consequents to saving faith. So, it appears that, again Swedenborg has misrepresented a position. One must wonder if this was really Jesus who spoke to him? Was Jesus lying to Swedenborg?
Also, why the equivocation? We talked about "winning heaven" without works and then you said that we can not be "heavenly people" without works.
If you are not saved by works at all, then you're saved by grace. Also, what happens to your sin? Is Swedenborg's god a just god? If so, how can he not punish sin?
SD: "He teaches that sin is loving oneself more than anything. And the opposite of sin is loving the Lord above all else and loving the neighbor as oneself. These are the two great commandments of the Bible and the basis for the Ten Commandments. So, sinning is breaking the commandments."
PM: So, if sin is violation of the law then how can a just God not punish violations of his law? What is the punishment for breaking the commandments in Swedenborg's thought? Remember, if he contradicts Jesus then he has problems, if he doesn't then he has problems since he denies the atonement.
SD: "Shunning evils as sins is the way to Heaven."
PM: Okay, so I actually do merit my way to heaven.
SD: "Unlike Calvanism, there is only a universal "predestination" to Heaven, that is, the Lord wills all to choose a life of Heavenly happiness, and has created us for Heaven. But many do not choose that. And as a result, must be separated from those who do -- Hell."
PM: Well, this is an egregious contradiction on your part! If God wills all men to enter into heaven then why do some enter hell? You had said above that God cannot act contrary to his will. And you said that he wills to give men free will, and they can choose to be with him or not. So, one "will" of God's is that all men enter heaven, but another "will" is that all men have the ability to deny heaven. So it appears that one of God's "wills" was "contrary" to his other will. I doubt you hold to the decretive and permissive wills of God as us Calvinists do, so what’s your answer?
SD: "According to Swedenborg's revelation, God cannot "save" a person who has chosen a life of sin."
PM: But "saving" them is his will, and he "cannot act contrary to his will." So, he should "save them." But, if he does then he acts "contrary to his other will." What's Swedenborg's god to do? Furthermore, it appears that the creature has sovereign control over the creator. Swedenborg's god seems impotent.
SD: "In fact, God does one better. He permits sinners to live their loves in Hell. There, these people can engage in their self love to their hearts content, as long as they do not harm another."
PM: So, he's kind of like a cosmic Disneyland?
And, what if "their love" is to "harm another."
SD: "Since this is their unwavering wish, they are restrained from doing so, and thus the Hell of Hell."
PM: What if my self love is that other's cannot have self love? Thus their self love harms another, me? So, would all people be in The Hell of Hells?
SD: "This is precisely the theology of the Bible, though."
PM: Verses please!
SD: "Back to Islam, as a Calvanist, you can only take 144,000 to Heaven."
PM: Huh? I don't know where you got that one from.
SD: "So, the questions re: Islam are moot -- they are all going to Hell in your Christianity anyway, regardless of whether they were raised up of Divine Providence or not. As well, 99.99999999% of all Christians are headed for eternal Hell fire. And 99.99999% of all Calvanists are headed for Hell Fire."
PM: Nothing happens "regardless of God's providence." The rest is based on your 144,000 view. I'm afraid you're confusing me with Jehovah's witnesses.
SD: "This is not my kind of God! Create people -- billions and billions of them -- so that He can burn them in eternal Hell fire. And your theology had to create Satan? Why the need? Your God was taking care of that already!"
PM: I don't know why you'd believe that "majority of people created will end up in hell" in my theology. I don't think there's biblical warrant for that.
But, in your theology, God is all knowing and he created billions of billions of people who he knew would deny him, and thus end up in the Hell of Hells. So, it looks like your god is not "your kind of god!
SD: "Swedenborg's theology -- claimed to be revealed by God -- is the opposite of that. Swedenborg teaches of a Heaven and a Hell that only a God of Pure Love could create. Supported by free will, God created a way where angelic people can be truly happy in Heavenly joy, and a way for evil people to be as happy as they can be, given their loves, in Hell."
PM: Again with the mere "claiming."
How is Swedenborg's god "loving." He allows rapists and murderers to not get their just deserts. They have broken the law, and they get to go to cosmic Disneyland and be "as happy as they can be." Sorry, that's not "my kind of God." And unjust god is not the God of the Bible. And unjust god cannot be counted on to always act rightly. And unjust god, then, cannot ever be counted on and thus you have no security whatsoever.