VICTOR REPPERT SAID:
In short, the damnation of millions of souls is a means to an end that God could produce by, figuratively, snapping his finger. Or by showing everyone pictures of fictitious denizens of hell and saying that, of course, he could have done that to the blessed (who, given universalism, would now be everybody). I am inclined, paradoxically, to ask the Calvinist "What part of sovereign don't you understand?"
This is a non-sequitur. Christ doesn't have to implant false memories, he just has to tell the blessed the truth. As if they don't already know it, since they are, after all, the blessed.
Why would Christ have to deceive the blessed if he wanted to impress on them the graciousness of their salvation? He could do it with no deception, without out all those "object lessons" frying in hell to help them appreciate the grace of God. They're the blessed in heaven, for gosh sakes.
No extraordinary Cartesian explanation is required here. You have people who have received the Redemption of Christ. They are hanging on every word Christ has to say. They don't need object lessons writhing in the flames. It's not as if Christ has to say "You have been saved by my grace. But, in case you doubt me, look over to your left and see what happened to all those people to whom I did not bestow that grace. Now do you appreciate being here? It just isn't necessary.
Well, this gives me a whole new outlook on Christianity. Who needs real world events when we can have pictures? For gosh sakes, it isn’t necessary that God come to earth and be born to a Jewish girl. All we need is a Hallmark card with a fictitious crèche scene, fictitious baby, fictitious mom and dad, fictitious angels, fictitious animals, and fictitious wise men.
As long as the picture has a nice warm pastel glow, like a Vermeer painting, as long as the fictitious baby has a fictitious halo and a beatific smile, we can dispense with a real Incarnation.
A real Incarnation is kind of messy, now that I think about it. Not to mention a real Crucifixion. So let’s go Gnostic. Who needs real blood or real thorns–when a coloring book will do? Break out the crayons!