Jump to content
GreaseSpot Cafe
Sign in to follow this  
Rocky

Love Wins: a Book about Heaven, Hell and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived

Recommended Posts

6 hours ago, socks said:

 

So yeah - it does appear that the religious ideas of eternal/eternity and "forever" have been embedded into how people understand the translation of these words. Aion/aeon and the Greek's use of those words is of what you're calling a period of time, an "age", dispensation, part of a process - of sorts. 

It's an interesting topic and I think I get where you're going with it. I'd put it like this - 

A lot of man's idea of "eternity" is covered in our idea of "time". But - really, the most real definition of what eternity "IS" as it applies to God isn't primarily a matter of measured time..........in other words the word "eternal" isn't a clock that reads "always" or something.......(little humor there)......from the angle of aeon/aion I wouldn't answer the question "how long is eternity", I'd use it to answer the question "where am I and what's going on?"

That's a really sucky way to describe what I mean but if I started stacking up verses about God in the Bible it would give the impression that to me - as a creation of God's, eternity as some kind of time that has no beginning and no end would be GREAT because I measure time as a very measurable and trackable quality of life. "What time is it" and where is this moment in relation to all the moments I'm going to know is VERY important to the average citizen of Planet Earth, for obvious reasons. 

But it wouldn't be for someone who actually existed in my concept of Eternal Time would think about it. 

Which is hard for me to write, it's like trying to say I like a color I've never seen. 

Anyway - where I see what you're saying is in the context of the statements in the Bible - the sentences and verses don't always impose a concrete definition of the word aion (and it's forms) to mean "forever" or "eternal" - the meaning what it is, comes from the context. 

"I'm barely going to make it"....

Doesn't usually mean I'm going to make something like a cake and that I'll be bare when I do...... It usually means that I'll get somewhere I'm going when I'm expected but not early and hopefully not late. 

Etc. : )


 

You've summarized above pretty much what  I understood Bell to be getting at regarding "eternal" and a sense of time and that heaven is not somewhere else, but here already.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Rocky said:

Mark, didn't you already post a link to your website where you had previously posted this?

Are you reading Love Wins and then commenting on it? Or are you reading comments on this thread and figuring out how your already posted research might relate to it?

I am reading comments on this thread and providing my biblical research which I have done as a workoholic. I am reading other things also, for example a study written by someone who has done research on the figurative and not literal "Lake of Fire" as seen in Revelation chapter 20. Regarding Rob Bell and his book. It looks fine and perhaps I could give him a grade of "A".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Mark Sanguinetti said:

I am reading comments on this thread and providing my biblical research which I have done as a workoholic. I am reading other things also, for example a study written by someone who has done research on the figurative and not literal "Lake of Fire" as seen in Revelation chapter 20. Regarding Rob Bell and his book. It looks fine and perhaps I could give him a grade of "A".

You'd maybe give him an "A" grade without reading it? What is your objection to reading Love Wins?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, Mark Sanguinetti said:

People should see if they use their brain, the Greek word "aion" should only be looked at as eternal as it relates to God the creator or Jesus Christ his son.  Thank you Jesus Christ for passing salvation onto regular man. Here are some of the usages of this Greek word. I give credit to the people who know Koine Greek who are able to do New Testament translations with improvement. 

Matthew 13:39-40
39 The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world (aion); and the reapers are the angels. 40 As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world (aion).
King James Version (KJV)
Matthew 13:39-40
39 and the enemy who sowed them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age (aion), and the reapers are angels. 40 Just as the weeds are gathered and burned with fire, so will it be at the end of the age (aion).
English Standard Version (ESV)

Matthew 13:49
49 So shall it be at the end of the world (aion): the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just,
KJV
Matthew 13:49
49 So it will be at the end of the age (aion); the angels will come forth and take out the wicked from among the righteous,
New American Standard Bible

Matthew 24:3
3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world (aion)?
KJV
Matthew 24:3
3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming and of the end of the age (aion)?
Jubilee Bible 2000

Matthew 28:20
20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world (aion). Amen.
KJV
Matthew 28:20
20 teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age (aion).
New English Translation

Clearly from the above usages age or aion in the Greek has an ending.

Well, yes, that seems obvious. 

In my own exposure to this topic and those who might agree or disagree with Bell's premises, I don't thinks there's a real disagreement on that particular idea or translation across the board on every verse it appears in, the problem seems to be more in what someone thinks it means in relation to what the speaker or writer was saying, what they meant by it. Like Matthew 28:20 - Christ may have been telling them He'd be with them for some specific reason that He'd be with them for a specific period of time, but as part of His greater message, the "big picture", of being the Son of God He would want them to understand that He would "always" be with them in the way we understand words like forever. More practically and I think this is more to the point, the assurance He's giving His disciples throughout His life is that He's with them, cares for them, loves them and will help them. 

For humans, "forever" is most seen in the quality of "unconditional love" and forgiveness, I think, and this goes back to ol' Bell's ideas. We can talk all day long about what's eternal and what's not but like a child I care about my next meal.....will it be there Dad? Next time? How about the next? Will there always be food? What about when it rains and snows, will you still be with me to make sure I'm cared for? 

We know that children have to learn to live by time. Babies don't understand "tomorrow" or "later" very well. The earliest development is around what we see, hear, taste, touch, smell, our senses. It's immediate experience, we aren't born with the sense of time because we - haven't been alive very long. 

SIDE BAR ALERT - : ) There's always been a HUGE theological butt bust over whether the "natural man" of body and soul brings anything to the table for his own salvation, and we do know that nothing we do creates the opportunity or produces the result - it's all there by God's grace.....the idea of our developing understanding of time, our own selves as unique individuals and our needs for basic sustenance to live are learned though. We don't pop out ready to go. So while I believe "not by works but by grace", I also think there's an intrinsic in-the-face kind of "duh" moment when we realize that the conscious growth in our understanding of time and our own existence is something that's absolutely necessary to "be saved". Put another way, a person who never develops mentally and has the understanding of a 3 year old can't "believe to be saved" the way we know it from the Bible. And they may not "need to be".........which accounts for the convoluted doctrines of Catholicism to create a channel of salvation for them.........but when Jesus said that we should BECOME saved, converted and then be LIKE children, one has to weight that statement and come to certain conclusions about it - because if He meant like a 3 year old, it would relinquish any responsibility of our part. Yet, we can see from context He meant "childlike" not "babylike". And more importantly "sinless" ..... ? It's very simple then - it's about acceptance and trust. And to be that trusting doesn't require a lot of work, but if you're an adult you're going to need to position yourself to accept and trust completely in God's grace.....Food for thought....

Which gets into another idea here - as you say, for God there's no "end of time". Eternity doesn't have a beginning by definition (which is why I think conceptually it's a struggle to use it that way, it's like saying something weighs 47 minutes.)

So from God's view the end of the world or an age is in relation to us and this part of His mmmm....stuff. Or others, for all I know. But again, it's like saying "what time is it" to Spock on Star Trek - surely he'd answer "on which of the billions of stars and their trillions of planets did you wish to calculate the time?" It's a matter of perspective, even excluding Vulcan where they may not care about what time it is anyway. 

So yeah. I'm going to re read Bell's book again, where he was going with this. I do think from my previous reading that he didn't put forth a position that accounts "for everything", but I don't think he was trying to. PEACE! 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, socks said:

 

So yeah. I'm going to re read Bell's book again, see where he was going with this. I do think that he didn't put forth a position that accounts "for everything", but I don't think he was trying to. 

PEACE! 

 

I agree, Bell doesn't seem to think he even needs (as a human) to account for everything. Perhaps one more reason to respect his position (at least as I see it). I find that refreshing.

It contrasts with our experience with a religious organization that did seem to think it had or could figure out the answers to everything.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/21/2019 at 11:34 PM, Rocky said:

Put another way, he dared to think outside the box.

He's sure not the first to speak out against hell being some place of eternal torment, which incidentally, I agree with (and quite frankly, have known from a time that was many moons before twi..)  Seems to me that doctrinally speaking, even vpw and twi would (have) agree(d) with him on that. (Which gives be pause in pondering why this particular thread was introduced here...)

What is questionable, however, is the notion of universalism... that eventually, none can  - or  will - resist the will (i.e., love) of God, and will (inevitably) be saved. Although Bell appears to lean in that direction in his book, it also appears that (perhaps for questionable reasons) he is (intentionally) rather vague, if not downright elusive, on the matter.    

On 9/22/2019 at 2:57 PM, Rocky said:

Bell doesn't seem to think he even needs (as a human) to account for everything. Perhaps one more reason to respect his position (at least as I see it). I find that refreshing.

It's not that I think any of us can (nor should we think should need to try to) account for everything.  But this little matter (or issue, if you prefer) is neither little, nor insignificant, by any means... and to appear to be so wishy washing on it come across to me as being very "questionable."  Why skirt the issue? Has he genuinely... -or perhaps, purposefully ... not thought it all the way through to a logical or reasonable conclusion to the matter? If not... why not?  Perhaps his "outside the box" thinking simply isn't as original or as "creative" as might be imagined...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, TLC said:

He's sure not the first to speak out against hell being some place of eternal torment, which incidentally, I agree with (and quite frankly, have known from a time that was many moons before twi..)  Seems to me that doctrinally speaking, even vpw and twi would (have) agree(d) with him on that. (Which gives be pause in pondering why this particular thread was introduced here...)

What is questionable, however, is the notion of universalism... that eventually, none can  - or  will - resist the will (i.e., love) of God, and will (inevitably) be saved. Although Bell appears to lean in that direction in his book, it also appears that (perhaps for questionable reasons) he is (intentionally) rather vague, if not downright elusive, on the matter.    

It's not that I think any of us can (nor should we think should need to try to) account for everything.  But this little matter (or issue, if you prefer) is neither little, nor insignificant, by any means... and to appear to be so wishy washing on it come across to me as being very "questionable."  Why skirt the issue? Has he genuinely... -or perhaps, purposefully ... not thought it all the way through to a logical or reasonable conclusion to the matter? If not... why not?  Perhaps his "outside the box" thinking simply isn't as original or as "creative" as might be imagined...

Lot's of speculation in that post about Bell's motivation and mine too. Perhaps the answer is much simpler than the sinister motives you insinuate. Perhaps it's a matter of just recently having heard about his book and found it interesting and wanting to share it. For Bell, perhaps it's that the issue is bigger than any of us and he isn't prepared to claim to be an authority. Reviews I read ahead of getting hold of the book indicated that Bell accomplished for many people helping them expand the range of what they can imagine. I believe he accomplished that marvelously. Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hope Beyond Hell The Righteous Purpose of God's Judgment

Here is a book that I have read that was written by a dentist from Texas. Yes, it is OK to have worked as a dentist and written a biblical book. As an example, Luke the biblical writer of the book of Acts and Gospel of Luke was a physician or doctor and not an apostle. 

https://www.amazon.com/Hope-Beyond-Righteous-Purpose-Judgment-ebook/dp/B001T4Z81C/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=Hope+Beyond+Hell&qid=1569788663&s=books&sr=1-1

The content of this book relates to the book read by Rocky.

 

Edited by Mark Sanguinetti
  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

...what an obvious case of projection:

18 hours ago, Rocky said:

Perhaps the answer is much simpler than the sinister motives you insinuate.

so much for any "discussion" of Bell's position on the issue... 

sayonara.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/29/2019 at 9:41 AM, TLC said:

He's sure not the first to speak out against hell being some place of eternal torment, which incidentally, I agree with (and quite frankly, have known from a time that was many moons before twi..)  Seems to me that doctrinally speaking, even vpw and twi would (have) agree(d) with him on that. (Which gives be pause in pondering why this particular thread was introduced here...)

What is questionable, however, is the notion of universalism... that eventually, none can  - or  will - resist the will (i.e., love) of God, and will (inevitably) be saved. Although Bell appears to lean in that direction in his book, it also appears that (perhaps for questionable reasons) he is (intentionally) rather vague, if not downright elusive, on the matter.    

It's not that I think any of us can (nor should we think should need to try to) account for everything.  But this little matter (or issue, if you prefer) is neither little, nor insignificant, by any means... and to appear to be so wishy washing on it come across to me as being very "questionable."  Why skirt the issue? Has he genuinely... -or perhaps, purposefully ... not thought it all the way through to a logical or reasonable conclusion to the matter? If not... why not?  Perhaps his "outside the box" thinking simply isn't as original or as "creative" as might be imagined...

Which part of the highlighted words/expressions/sentences that you wrote, did I misunderstand? Is that really "discussing his positions" or questioning his motives. By all means, please clarify.

Now, let me clarify that I am in no position to speak for Rob Bell or answer for why he did or didn't do anything. I've never met him. Did I misunderstand that you were asking me why he "skirted the issue?" Or whether he "genuinely or perhaps purposefully... not thought it all the way through to [what would read to you like a more] logical or reasonable conclusion to the matter? If not, why not?"  and,

"Perhaps his "outside the box" thinking simply isn't as original or as "creative" as might be imagined..." is that a value judgment? Or did I misunderstand what you wrote there too? If so, again, please clarify.

Edited by Rocky
why does it matter that I edited?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Rocky said:

Which part of the highlighted words/expressions/sentences that you wrote, did I misunderstand? Is that really "discussing his positions" or questioning his motives. By all means, please clarify.

Now, let me clarify that I am in no position to speak for Rob Bell or answer for why he did or didn't do anything. I've never met him. Did I misunderstand that you were asking me why he "skirted the issue?" Or whether he "genuinely or perhaps purposefully... not thought it all the way through to [what would read to you like a more] logical or reasonable conclusion to the matter? If not, why not?"  and,

"Perhaps his "outside the box" thinking simply isn't as original or as "creative" as might be imagined..." is that a value judgment? Or did I misunderstand what you wrote there too? If so, again, please clarify.

 

On 9/29/2019 at 9:41 AM, TLC said:

He's sure not the first to speak out against hell being some place of eternal torment, which incidentally, I agree with (and quite frankly, have known from a time that was many moons before twi..)  Seems to me that doctrinally speaking, even vpw and twi would (have) agree(d) with him on that. (Which gives be pause in pondering why this particular thread was introduced here...)

What is questionable, however, is the notion of universalism... that eventually, none can  - or  will - resist the will (i.e., love) of God, and will (inevitably) be saved. Although Bell appears to lean in that direction in his book, it also appears that (perhaps for questionable reasons) he is (intentionally) rather vague, if not downright elusive, on the matter.    

It's not that I think any of us can (nor should we think should need to try to) account for everything.  But this little matter (or issue, if you prefer) is neither little, nor insignificant, by any means... and to appear to be so wishy washing on it come across to me as being very "questionable."  Why skirt the issue? Has he genuinely... -or perhaps, purposefully ... not thought it all the way through to a logical or reasonable conclusion to the matter? If not... why not?  Perhaps his "outside the box" thinking simply isn't as original or as "creative" as might be imagined...

At the expense of seeming like the ant peering back up through the microscope, I have the same question about Bell's view of God's "universal acceptance" plan....

Everything religion teaches about "the Devil", Lucifer, the angel that rebelled and fell and that is at odds with God....

Is that Lucifer is NOT going to change and align with God....free will, choice, etc.

Lucifer may be part of a different creative plan than ours....some of the same rules may apply but all may not....we don't really know, however we do know from what we're told that we're all rolling out to the same point in the future where there will be a convergence of sorts where we're all cross paths.

A lot of Judeo-Christian religion tends to put us all in the same basket of creation but I don't know that that's true....it's less that we're told we're not and more that we're not quite told enough to come to that conclusion without any question or reservation.

So - my point being - going by Bell's theory and postulations, Lucifer (and all others of that group) may be part of the win-win of Love, in the end but not as a win, as a you-no-winnah-nuttin' scenario, which appears to be a dead end, literally.

Which isn't really any of my business so to speak but ... based on what we've seen the separation between God and Lucifer is one of Lucifer's choice and the expectation is that Lucifer's mind won't change.

So - this brings up a very interesting point and that is that our "Free Will", our ability to choose and therefore "believe" is fundamental-

But not truly within or under our complete total command.

Because we can choose yes, but there aren't a million possibilities between yes and no there's only two choices we're given, and if we don't choose to follow God's direction we automatically fall into the second choice. So really I could say that there's only "one choice" and in a very real way that's "no choice".....there's just the one thing, that really matters....

So the default state of man's creation is or was - a "yes". However the ability to do anything other than what we were designed to do allows/ed for that default state to essentially fail, to break. The break was like a computer or any machine - a computer in it's simplest form is built to do certain things, even one thing say, and it will do that one thing forever given the right set up. There's no self development over time - it just does that thing forever. Or until it stops, which means it may still be "powered on" but it's essentially broken. It didn't really "choose" to do that it just reached some point where it was no longer able to do that for whatever reasons. We haven't been told we're designed to do many different things or that the rules change at some point, so it's not a bad way to look at it.

The unsaved person is called a "child of disobedience", condemned and unable to change. "Broken" would be another word.

Christ "unbreaks" us, puts us back together, rejoins us to God. We then become a "child of God", and able to be back in that default state of "yes", a creation that can now work right, so to speak.

(drum roll) so it took awhile to get here but what I'm saying is that heaven isn't and doesn't need to be a big back of sparkly candy nor is hell an eternity of torment......if the net result of salvation is being back in the correct state of God's design. As we are now - our "spirit", our "Christ in us", our "faith of Jesus Christ", isn't making the wrong choices, it's not exercising a freedom of will where we in "new life in Christ" can somehow actually do the wrong thing or sin or skank it all up, the "holy spirit" in us isn't tainted by  our choices......it can't feed back a toxic lifestyle to God. There is a perfection to this treasure of new life we're given that is the new standard for all time, now and the future.

Love wins......? It has to if Love is whatever God wants. It's His show. Whatever God doesn't want to have happen won't produce a result that will survive and thrive in future of eternity. "Sin", disobedience, the wages of sin, etc. etc. etc. etc. There's no need for that in eternity.

Unless that's what God wants. (insert LOL)

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, socks said:

 

At the expense of seeming like the ant peering back up through the microscope, I have the same question about Bell's view of God's "universal acceptance" plan....

Everything religion teaches about "the Devil", Lucifer, the angel that rebelled and fell and that is at odds with God....

Is that Lucifer is NOT going to change and align with God....free will, choice, etc.

Lucifer may be part of a different creative plan than ours....some of the same rules may apply but all may not....we don't really know, however we do know from what we're told that we're all rolling out to the same point in the future where there will be a convergence of sorts where we're all cross paths.

A lot of Judeo-Christian religion tends to put us all in the same basket of creation but I don't know that that's true....it's less that we're told we're not and more that we're not quite told enough to come to that conclusion without any question or reservation.

So - my point being - going by Bell's theory and postulations, Lucifer (and all others of that group) may be part of the win-win of Love, in the end but not as a win, as a you-no-winnah-nuttin' scenario, which appears to be a dead end, literally.

Which isn't really any of my business so to speak but ... based on what we've seen the separation between God and Lucifer is one of Lucifer's choice and the expectation is that Lucifer's mind won't change.

So - this brings up a very interesting point and that is that our "Free Will", our ability to choose and therefore "believe" is fundamental-

But not truly within or under our complete total command.

Because we can choose yes, but there aren't a million possibilities between yes and no there's only two choices we're given, and if we don't choose to follow God's direction we automatically fall into the second choice. So really I could say that there's only "one choice" and in a very real way that's "no choice".....there's just the one thing, that really matters....

So the default state of man's creation is or was - a "yes". However the ability to do anything other than what we were designed to do allows/ed for that default state to essentially fail, to break. The break was like a computer or any machine - a computer in it's simplest form is built to do certain things, even one thing say, and it will do that one thing forever given the right set up. There's no self development over time - it just does that thing forever. Or until it stops, which means it may still be "powered on" but it's essentially broken. It didn't really "choose" to do that it just reached some point where it was no longer able to do that for whatever reasons. We haven't been told we're designed to do many different things or that the rules change at some point, so it's not a bad way to look at it.

The unsaved person is called a "child of disobedience", condemned and unable to change. "Broken" would be another word.

Christ "unbreaks" us, puts us back together, rejoins us to God. We then become a "child of God", and able to be back in that default state of "yes", a creation that can now work right, so to speak.

(drum roll) so it took awhile to get here but what I'm saying is that heaven isn't and doesn't need to be a big back of sparkly candy nor is hell an eternity of torment......if the net result of salvation is being back in the correct state of God's design. As we are now - our "spirit", our "Christ in us", our "faith of Jesus Christ", isn't making the wrong choices, it's not exercising a freedom of will where we in "new life in Christ" can somehow actually do the wrong thing or sin or skank it all up, the "holy spirit" in us isn't tainted by  our choices......it can't feed back a toxic lifestyle to God. There is a perfection to this treasure of new life we're given that is the new standard for all time, now and the future.

Love wins......? It has to if Love is whatever God wants. It's His show. Whatever God doesn't want to have happen won't produce a result that will survive and thrive in future of eternity. "Sin", disobedience, the wages of sin, etc. etc. etc. etc. There's no need for that in eternity.

Unless that's what God wants. (insert LOL)

 

 

 

I love the image you invoke in the first sentence.

You might have the same question(s) as TLC, but you expressed whatever questions you have in terms of questioning the points Bell makes, rather than his motives. I appreciate that about you and what you write on this thread.

The question(s) about free will seem to be basic (fundamental but not necessarily fundamentalist) to coming to grips with what we see in the Bible. I don't have "the" answer but I get why people ponder the question.

My underlying concern with Christian churches/religions, including twi, goes to the issue of -- as Skyrider recently put it -- subjugation (or obedience)

There might be some value to "freely availing" ourselves of fellowship(s) with like-minded believers. Such fellowship can, I suppose, give rise to positive group dynamics. But it can also very easily turn dark when the ideas motivating such a team (or subculture) are not so wonderful.

I really am not in a position to parse or argue the specifics of the philosophical questions you (very reasonably) raise. I just haven't had my head into such questions, as you may have.

But I have looked at various types of group interactions (from team sports to carrying out civic responsibilities) at least somewhat through the lens of what I learned early on in my adulthood from and about Biblical stories/topics. I find Bell's viewpoint highly intriguing in that regard. However, I also find your discussion quite valuable. Thank you.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/29/2019 at 1:36 PM, Mark Sanguinetti said:

Hope Beyond Hell The Righteous Purpose of God's Judgment

Here is a book that I have read that was written by a dentist from Texas. Yes, it is OK to have worked as a dentist and written a biblical book. As an example, Luke the biblical writer of the book of Acts and Gospel of Luke was a physician or doctor and not an apostle. 

https://www.amazon.com/Hope-Beyond-Righteous-Purpose-Judgment-ebook/dp/B001T4Z81C/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=Hope+Beyond+Hell&qid=1569788663&s=books&sr=1-1

The content of this book relates to the book read by Rocky.

 

Right now, this book is available on Kindle for free. Amazon has a free Kindle app so, if you do not own (or want to read on) a Kindle device, you can do so on your computer. Thanks Mark, I'm downloading the book now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
21 hours ago, Rocky said:

I love the image you invoke in the first sentence.

You might have the same question(s) as TLC, but you expressed whatever questions you have in terms of questioning the points Bell makes, rather than his motives. I appreciate that about you and what you write on this thread.

The question(s) about free will seem to be basic (fundamental but not necessarily fundamentalist) to coming to grips with what we see in the Bible. I don't have "the" answer but I get why people ponder the question.

My underlying concern with Christian churches/religions, including twi, goes to the issue of -- as Skyrider recently put it -- subjugation (or obedience)

There might be some value to "freely availing" ourselves of fellowship(s) with like-minded believers. Such fellowship can, I suppose, give rise to positive group dynamics. But it can also very easily turn dark when the ideas motivating such a team (or subculture) are not so wonderful.

I really am not in a position to parse or argue the specifics of the philosophical questions you (very reasonably) raise. I just haven't had my head into such questions, as you may have.

But I have looked at various types of group interactions (from team sports to carrying out civic responsibilities) at least somewhat through the lens of what I learned early on in my adulthood from and about Biblical stories/topics. I find Bell's viewpoint highly intriguing in that regard. However, I also find your discussion quite valuable. Thank you.

 

Cool, and yes it's intriguing!

In any inquiry I'll usually go to the two extremes of the topic, just to see what that looks like and see what's in-between. "Grace" is a very interesting thing in the extreme. So the question, what is the extreme and does it accurately reflect what it is? 

The context of how it's used puts the borders around it and fills in the meaning. When it says we are saved "by grace, not of works, lest anyone should boast"........the knee jerk Sunday sermon on that is about how we can't take credit or glory in salvation....  but in that  verse-statement is some very hard cast reality -

1. that the opportunity to be made whole and have the relationship restored with God, through Jesus Christ is not one we created - by negotiation, good behavior or any other effort on our part.  There's no "after much discussion God and I came to an agreement"....Man is like Humpty Dumpty there for awhile before God lays out a path for the full restoration of the relationship. It comes into fruition in Christ. 

2. that the relationship develops once it's been restored. If I gave you a rock for your birthday, the rock will always be a rock. Time passes....rock. Our "gift" is different, it's living, and the restored relationship develops for us in this life, as we live it. That's something that I've come to appreciate more and more over time - there's a LOT of the Christian doctrine that comes in under that part of it. The new birth and the relationship and the nurturing and growth of it aren't all separate things, divided from each other, they should be understood as part of the same thing. As with time - if I say it's 3 pm, it's part of a reality being shared by all of creation. 

For a lot of Christians the development of the relationship is one of angst, struggle and lots of on again off again misunderstandings. When it's young it's like having a crush on some girl in high school and every day is a tortured exercise in finding out what she said, what her friends said and if she said anything about me like does she like me? does she know I like her? and which table she's going to be sitting at for lunch today and can you give her this note and tell me EXACTly what she says and how she looks when you say it's from me........but in reality the "grace" part of the opportunity through Christ eliminates all that, ALL of the back and forth. We're now in a position of basically enjoying the new car smell of our New Life and learning what all this stuff does.

Bell's position could be understood as one of "extreme grace"....and if grace is "unmerited divine favor" then who are we to put requirements on it other than what God puts.....and THAT'S where my focus is on - he's straddling uber Calvinism and universalist grace in a way that's really kind of conservative and fundamentalist. (and it's realllllly funny how he got thrown under the bus for insinuating burning hell isn't the end game for disobedience to God - it's almost like he threatened their money streams....)..........I don't like the way he presents the whole thing, like the list of seemingly contradictory and confusing definitions of what salvation is - he knows that isn't a correct way to view it but he still does in order to set the table for his argument. And any part time theologian or philosopher knows the answer to "why" would God do this or that or whatever even though it seems whacky to me inside my big beautiful brain.....and it's "because"..............once that's accepted the exercise of understanding something I didn't already have my mind made up on is possible. 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, socks said:

it's realllllly funny how he got thrown under the bus for insinuating burning hell isn't the end game for disobedience to God - it's almost like he threatened their money streams....)

LOL... "almost." That seems like a figure of speech... understatement. :wink2:

 

 

3 hours ago, socks said:

why" would God do this or that or whatever even though it seems whacky to me inside my big beautiful brain.....and it's "because"..............once that's accepted the exercise of understanding something I didn't already have my mind made up on is possible. 

Yeah, Bell seems to intentionally shatter our old notions so that we can actually consider the possibility that there's a (or multiple) different ways to look at the things of God.

Thanks so much for contributing to this conversation. :dance:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am writing a new article on the subject of ends times through Jesus Christ. Some of this article deals with the very symbolic book of Revelation. Here is some of the content. Is this interesting to you? 

Regarding the unjust also being reconciled and at peace with God through Jesus Christ. The writer of the book of Revelation, named John got a vision of a “new heaven and a new earth” as stated in Revelation 21:1.  This was very favorably seen. Since the writer was likely an Israelite named John, he saw this as the New Jerusalem, which to the Israelites was a very favorable place since for a number of years it was the political and religious capital city of their nation. John also got visions of twelve gates around Jerusalem as stated in Revelation 21:12-13. He also saw foundations of the twelve gates made of precious earthly stones or minerals. From verse 13 to 24 he had symbolic visions which looked very good.  These were gates, which people outside the gates could enter into. Otherwise they would have been seen as brick walls around Jerusalem to keep everyone not inside the gates permanently out of the new visional and symbolic Jerusalem. This shows good on the inside of the gates and not good on the outside of the gates. 

Revelation 21:25-27
25 On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. 26 The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. 27 Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life. 
NIV

The question is what is the “Lamb’s book of life” and who is part of this? The Lamb’s book of life represents Jesus Christ and those who follow him. Only good or pure will enter into this. Next we have verses which show the free will of humanity. The choice being given to humanity of doing good or not doing good. In a favorable way, I see this as the followers of Jesus Christ being fully persuaded in heart to follow Jesus Christ. This is through the gift of Holy Spirit and the new spiritual body patterned after the Lord’s resurrected body that his followers will receive when he returns from heaven. Or as 1 Corinthians 15: 49 says, “so shall we bear the likeness of the man from heaven”, who is Jesus Christ.  For an explanation of this see 1 Corinthians chapter 15.

Revelation 22:10-11
10 And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand.
11 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.
KJV

Next we have more symbolic language of those who wash their robes. This shows that those who change from bad to good through Jesus Christ will be able to go through the gates into the city. However, outside of what he thought as the New Jerusalem John still saw those who were bad with him comparing them to dogs. Dogs are seen favorably today, but during the first century before dogs were trained to be good, dogs were symbolically seen as bad. However, just like dogs have been trained today to be good in nations like the United States. In the future under Jesus Christ more and more of humanity will be retrained to be good and followers of Christ. 

Revelation 22:14-15
14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.
KJV

The final outcome was not seen by John the writer of the book of Revelation. What John saw was the free will ability to do good or not to do good. 

Edited by Mark Sanguinetti

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Mark Sanguinetti said:

I am writing a new article on the subject of ends times through Jesus Christ. Some of this article deals with the very symbolic book of Revelation. Here is some of the content. Is this interesting to you? 

Regarding the unjust also being reconciled and at peace with God through Jesus Christ. The writer of the book of Revelation, named John got a vision of a “new heaven and a new earth” as stated in Revelation 21:1.  This was very favorably seen. Since the writer was likely an Israelite named John, he saw this as the New Jerusalem, which to the Israelites was a very favorable place since for a number of years it was the political and religious capital city of their nation. John also got visions of twelve gates around Jerusalem as stated in Revelation 21:12-13. He also saw foundations of the twelve gates made of precious earthly stones or minerals. From verse 13 to 24 he had symbolic visions which looked very good.  These were gates, which people outside the gates could enter into. Otherwise they would have been seen as brick walls around Jerusalem to keep everyone not inside the gates permanently out of the new visional and symbolic Jerusalem. This shows good on the inside of the gates and not good on the outside of the gates. 

Revelation 21:25-27
25 On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. 26 The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. 27 Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life. 
NIV

The question is what is the “Lamb’s book of life” and who is part of this? The Lamb’s book of life represents Jesus Christ and those who follow him. Only good or pure will enter into this. Next we have verses which show the free will of humanity. The choice being given to humanity of doing good or not doing good. In a favorable way, I see this as the followers of Jesus Christ being fully persuaded in heart to follow Jesus Christ. This is through the gift of Holy Spirit and the new spiritual body patterned after the Lord’s resurrected body that his followers will receive when he returns from heaven. Or as 1 Corinthians 15: 49 says, “so shall we bear the likeness of the man from heaven”, who is Jesus Christ.  For an explanation of this see 1 Corinthians chapter 15.

Revelation 22:10-11
10 And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand.
11 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.
KJV

Next we have more symbolic language of those who wash their robes. This shows that those who change from bad to good through Jesus Christ will be able to go through the gates into the city. However, outside of what he thought as the New Jerusalem John still saw those who were bad with him comparing them to dogs. Dogs are seen favorably today, but during the first century before dogs were trained to be good, dogs were symbolically seen as bad. However, just like dogs have been trained today to be good in nations like the United States. In the future under Jesus Christ more and more of humanity will be retrained to be good and followers of Christ. 

Revelation 22:14-15
14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.
KJV

The final outcome was not seen by John the writer of the book of Revelation. What John saw was the free will ability to do good or not to do good. 

Not as interesting as it would be if it was on topic, namely Rob Bell's book.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Rocky said:

Not as interesting as it would be if it was on topic, namely Rob Bell's book.

Curious now, but does Rob Bell deal with the content of the book of Revelation? Especially the last chapters? With all the figurative language in this book, this can be challenging.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Rocky said:

Not as interesting as it would be if it was on topic, namely Rob Bell's book.

Granted, he's not addressing quotes from Rob Bell's book.  That having been said, is this topic tightly confined to that?   It seems the thrust of the book- if I understand correctly-  is that of "universal salvation",  that is, that all of humanity will be saved.   Are we unable to discuss that if it isn't tied to a direct quote?   If not, my own involvement in this thread's going to be minimal at most.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Mark Sanguinetti said:

Curious now, but does Rob Bell deal with the content of the book of Revelation? Especially the last chapters? With all the figurative language in this book, this can be challenging.

You're welcome to find out here

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, WordWolf said:

Granted, he's not addressing quotes from Rob Bell's book.  That having been said, is this topic tightly confined to that?   It seems the thrust of the book- if I understand correctly-  is that of "universal salvation",  that is, that all of humanity will be saved.   Are we unable to discuss that if it isn't tied to a direct quote?   If not, my own involvement in this thread's going to be minimal at most.

Well, since I'm not an expert on tangential topics that might be related, it seems that it would only be polite to stay on topic. Are you saying you refuse to read the book? I suppose that's your prerogative, but the book is not a difficult or long read and it easily obtainable in public libraries or online.

How would you know if a tangential topic is related to the book, if you don't look at the book?

If you're asking me to change the thread topic, I'd say it might be easier for others to simply start another thread with a different topic. Am I wrong?

Edited by Rocky

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Rocky said:

 

oops, meant to edit not quote.

Edited by Rocky

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Rocky said:

Well, since I'm not an expert on tangential topics that might be related, it seems that it would only be polite to stay on topic. Are you saying you refuse to read the book? I suppose that's your prerogative, but the book is not a difficult or long read and it easily obtainable in public libraries or online.

How would you know if a tangential topic is related to the book, if you don't look at the book?

If you're asking me to change the thread topic, I'd say it might be easier for others to simply start another thread with a different topic. Am I wrong?

A) I'm not posting from the USA, so it's not in any public library local to me.  I also don't want to sign up for Amazon solely to read this.   If it's available online without signing up, sure I'll read it.  I'm pretty sure I have a program that will render it on a desktop already.

B) We either dance around a book's contents, or we discuss the book's contents.  If we dance around them, this is not a discussion OF the book's contents.  If we discuss the book's contents, the thread makes plain what the topics are of the book (to the degree they're discussed.)  Based on what you've posted so far, the author is either stating outright he's supporting "universal salvation", or he's insinuating it while refusing to state it outright (I find that intellectually dishonest no matter WHO does it.)  I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt that he's saying it outright, sooner or later in the book.  It seems Mark S came to much the same conclusion (his posts reflect that understanding.)  So, either the author is supporting that position (based on what you, the thread-maker, posted)  or he is not and your communications made it look otherwise.  I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt that you're representing the book's contents fairly faithfully.

C) I'm not asking you to "change" anything.  You seem to be pretty specific that you're tightly defining the discussion.  If the author wrote a book espousing "universal salvation", then discussing "universal salvation" while discussing that selfsame book sure sounds completely on-topic,  at least by our usual practices.  If we have to only discuss the subject in light of direct quotes from the book, then it seems this thread is very limited- and needlessly so, IMHO.   So, normally we'd just discuss both in one thread.  Since you seemed opposed to that, I asked.  Mainly, I want to know if you're going to have issues discussing it on this thread.  If so, then I'll open a parallel thread where we can actually discuss the topic you brought up, and both the content the author provided as well as what we ourselves bring to the table.  I think it's a waste of time and would rather just continue on this thread, but if so, you'll have to ease up and let people chime in without prefacing their sentences with "In accordance with Rob Bell" or something along those lines. 

This is not a rigorous academic forum instituted by a university.   We can decide to what degree we're unclenching today.   So, simple question, IMHO.  Can we discuss "universal salvation" in general in this thread, or will we need to open a parallel thread to do so? 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Rocky said:

oops, meant to edit not quote.

It's pretty simple to me - the topic is Rob Bell's book, "Love Wins" and the content of the book. There's lots of things related to that, many I've brought up so far, some a stretch but I don't intend to dwell on them until I've finished re reading the book and gathered my thoughts. 

If you don't or can't read the book WW, then I'm not interested in discussing a bunch of if this/then that postulations based on what the book might seem to say based on what others say about it. But you're right, it's GS, do as you will, see how it goes. I really don't care one way or the other, I'm just keeping my focus on the original topic since it caught my eye. 

I haven't done a deep dive into some of these other topics yet because I would have to generalize and wouldn't be able to  specifically tie them to a statement or premise in Bell's book. Consider what I've written so far a lot of misk-ellaneous thoughts while I refresh my thoughts on it. 

Sure, we could start a discussion on "love" and what it is, and "what it means to win" and of course Hell and Heaven and God's sovereignty and Man's will, predestination, justice, the history of religion and the various beliefs in all of the above...

But the common thread in this is Bell's book, Love Wins and what he's written about in it. 

For my part - I don't mind if you Mark or anyone wants to take this off into whatever areas you see of importance in it to you, but I'd expect that there is some tie in to Bell's book, Love Wins and that you can point out where and what that is, not ask one of us to validate it in the book for you. 

So Mark if you ask if what you're writing is in Bell's book, I would ask you to say where and to what point are you responding - in other words, don't ask Rocky to tell you if you're consistent with the book, point out yourself the point and place in Bell's book that you're commenting on and state your business in a way that we can actually understand both the connection, and the meaning.  

Otherwise it does seem like you're just tagging on your material to the topic without interest inRob Bell's book, "Love Wins", which is where this started. 

And if that's what you want to do, just say so. I'll give you an "A" for clarity. Either way, I'll likely ease off this for awhile myself while I peruse the book and give it some thought. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, socks said:

For my part - I don't mind if you Mark or anyone wants to take this off into whatever areas you see of importance in it to you, but I'd expect that there is some tie in to Bell's book, Love Wins and that you can point out where and what that is, not ask one of us to validate it in the book for you. 

So Mark if you ask if what you're writing is in Bell's book, I would ask you to say where and to what point are you responding - in other words, don't ask Rocky to tell you if you're consistent with the book, point out yourself the point and place in Bell's book that you're commenting on and state your business in a way that we can actually understand both the connection, and the meaning.  

Otherwise it does seem like you're just tagging on your material to the topic without interest in Rob Bell's book, "Love Wins", which is where this started. 

 

if you want to call it tagging that is your choice. I do not have a copy of the book you are mentioning to comment on after reading it. Instead I have many other books to read on this subject and yes that also includes actual biblical versions. My question is to those who have a copy of this book and have read it. Does this author ever mention scriptures from the book of Revelation to state his views? For example, the last three chapters, of the book of Revelation, chapters 20-22.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...