Darin Raspberry,If you read this comment, I rejoice, along with His Angels, that you were lovingly argued into His Arms.Steve,Thanks so much for sharing this. Moreover, thank you (and the other dedicated Triabloggers) for the often thankless task of lovingly arguing others into the Truth of His Love.
I'm always hopeful that people can and will learn. Raspberry made the journey from Christianity to atheism to Christianity. I made the journey from cradle Roman Catholic to evangelical Protestant to Roman Catholic to Reformed Protestant. This journey took 40 years, and for a time I was a devout enough RC to have (a) enrolled in a seminary to become a priest, and (b) to have spent several years in Opus Dei.There is a commenter here, named John, who was at one time a very active Roman apologist, who has converted back to Protestantism. Just recently I have observed another long-time journey of an individual who had an M.Div from a Reformed seminary, who became Eastern Orthodox, and was very adamantly so for a while, but whose enamorment for EOxy faded, and who has returned now to become a part of a Reformed Anglican communion.Rod Dreher was a celebrated "Catholic Convert" before becoming disgusted with the Roman hierarchy and converting to Orthodoxy.Such examples could be multiplied. Some people become stuck where they are, but I've always believed it to be a good thing that people have the desire to "try to do better" in serving the Lord. James Swan always held to the notion, though, that we ought not to become too upset when people convert to Rome (Rome has few of these and so it exaggerates their importance), and there are obviously a lot more people moving in the other direction.We live in an era when "everybody can know what everybody knows". Or at least, what a few key others know. And so, I tend to think that we'll see an increase in this sort of movement.
My journey was from Roman Catholic to agnostic to evangelical Christian to church-echewing believer in Christ - that is, a seeker of the kingdom of God.The destination is more than worth the journey. Blessed be His name!
Mike, the problem is that you are a heretic due to your universalism, so if you think you are among your fellow believers here, you are mistaken.
And yes, triablogue members, in case you didn't know, Mike Gantt is a universalist.
Mike Gantt, that's too bad. My prayer is that the Lord will continue to write your story, and bring you back to a more Scriptural understanding of His ordering of things.
I do believe that everyone is going to heaven, but only because Jesus Christ makes it so and the Bible testifies that it is true. I condemn any universalism that does not exalt Jesus Christ and His shed blood.
John Bugay,I provide a thorough scriptural case for everyone is going to heaven. I would not have the nerve to proclaim that everyone is going to heaven if I thought the Scriptures said otherwise.
Mike Gantt, I'm not interested.
John Bugay,Then you may cease deluding yourself that you care about the lost.
We care about as many of the lost as God cares about. And if that's good enough for God, that's good enough for me.
Mike Gantt said..."I would not have the nerve to proclaim that everyone is going to heaven if I thought the Scriptures said otherwise."If everyone is going to heaven anyway, why bother to proclaim? Why not wait and see? Watch what happens? And in the meantime, sin to your heart's content? Anyway, this post is not about universalism, so let's not derail it with any more off-topic comments.
Steve,I wasn't the one who invoked universalism in this comment string. I only responded when someone else raised it.There are answers to your questions, but if I offered them I'd be violating your request to refrain from further discussion on that topic.Back to the original topic, I hope we all keep moving on our faith journeys - forward, that is. Going in circles is no better than stagnation.
But if universalism is true, you get to heaven by going backwards, forwards, zigzagging, or going in circles.
Steve, Make that a separate post and I'll feel the liberty to comment on it.