« 上一頁繼續 »
make no distinction between them as the bodies of all the righteous shall be destroyed in the grave. Consequently, this passage of scripture is directly opposed to Universalism.
4. In the epistle to the Hebrews, (Heb. vi. 8.) we are informed that, 'that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, and is nigh unto cursing; whose end is to be burned.' If to be rejected, and to be burned means salvation, and the enjoyment of God in heaven, we may as well burn our bibles at once, and have done with them; as we do not know when to take a word in its literal signification, figurative meaning, or just the reverse of its common meaning, unless we have it explained by some of the oracles of the heresy of Universalism.
5. Peter in describing the dreadful state of an apostate says, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after having known it, to turn from the holy commandment, delivered unto them.' 2 Pet. ii. 20. This text shews that the final state of an apostate is worse than the beginning, and consequently stands as an insurmountable difficulty in the way of Universalism.
6. Our Lord, in speaking of the wicked conduct of Judas, said, 'But woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.' Matt. xxvi. 24. If Judas shall ever enter the kingdom of glory, and dwell in it to interminable ages, it would not be true to say,' it had been good for him not to be born, for it certainly
will be good for all that enter heaven, that they were born. Hence, our Saviour's words concerning Judas, cannot be true, only on the condition that he shall be finally lost. This is as clear as language can make it.
7. Paul says, that they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.' 1 Tim. vi. 9. This destruction and perdition express the final state of the sinner, and as there can be no state after the final one, there can be no salvation after this perdition.
8. In Matt. xxv. 30, we are informed that the unprofitable servant will be cast into outer darkness, where there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.' This text shews what will be done to the wicked, at the time their character shall be investigated by the Supreme judge, and as this is represented to us as the final state of the man we have just reason to consider it as being irreconciliable with Universalism.
9. In John xv. 6. Jesus says, 'If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.' This metaphor is evidently intended to point out the last state of the finally impenitent, and cannot be explained in accordance with final happiness, without destroying its whole force and meaning. To explain this of the destruction or burning of the body would equally destroy the force and meaning of the passage. Therefore, it must be understood of endless misery.
10. In Rom. xiv. 15. Paul says, 'destroy not
him with thy meat, for whom Christ died.' The doctrine of these words is this; a man, for whom Christ died, may be destroyed; and if destroyed, he is utterly ruined. Consequently, his salvation is inconsistent with his destruction.
11. In 1 Cor. viii. 10, 11, Paul cautions the well informed christians of Corinth, concerning the eating of meat offered to idols, and says, For if any man see thee, which hast knowledge, sit at meat in the idol's temple, shall not the conscience of him which is weak, be emboldened to eat those things which are offered to idols; and through thy knowledge, shall the weak brother perish for whom Christ died?' The word perish, in this passage must mean endless misery, as it is the same that is employed in John iii. 16, where it is said, 'he that believeth on him (Christ) shall not perish, but have everlasting life.'
12. The apostle Paul says, 'If our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost, in whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ who is the image of God, should shine 'unto them.' The lost mentioned in this place, are those who are led away in spiritual darkness, by the god of this world; and the meaning of the word lost, may be seen by our Lord's use of it, in reference to Judas, where he said I have lost none except the son of perdition.
13. In Heb. x. 39, it is said in reference to the Hebrew converts, 'But we are not of them who draw back to perdition; but of them that believe to the salvation of the soul.' From these words
we may learn: 1. That it is possible to draw back to perdition. 2. That this perdition is the lust state of the individual, as it is set in contrast with salvation. 3. As salvation is the final state of the believer, so destruction is the final state of the apostate. The miserable subterfuge of a temporal application of this passage, will not satisfy any enquiring mind.
14. Our Saviour asks this question; 'What is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world, and lose himself, or be cast away? The meaning of this question is this; a man that has gained all the temporal pleasures and enjoyments of this present world, at the expense of being cast to endless perdition at the day of judgment, has gained no advantage. Therefore, this passage is at varience with that doctrine which teaches that no man can lose himself, or be cast away.
15. The apostle James, in speaking of the unmerciful man, says, 'he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath shewed no mercy; and mer cy rejoiceth against judgment.' Jam. ii. 13. How judgment can be inflicted on a man without mercy, and the man be eternally saved, is rather difficult for me to comprehend. Some hypercritic of the Universalist order, perhaps, will give us an explanation of it, and prove to us that it is all mercy.
16. In the book of Proverbs (Prov. vi. 15.) it said of the wicked that his calamity shall come suddenly; and 'suddenly shall he be broken without remedy.' If he is to be destroyed or ruined without remedy, I cannot see how his salvation is to be accomplished.
17. Our blessed Saviour has said, 'Verily I
say unto you, except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.' Matt. xviii. 3. In considering this, we may observe: 1. That no man can enter the kingdom of heaven without conversion is positively asserted. 2. Conversion is a contingent thing, depending on the fulfilment of certain conditions. Now if these conditions shall not be complied with, conversion shall not take place, and if there is no conversion there can be no admission at the gates of heaven. Hence, Universalism falls to the ground.
18. Of like import to the latter objection are those words in John iii. 3, where it is said, except a man be born again he cannot enter the kingdom of God. The remarks on the last will apply with equal force to this passage.
19. When our Saviour sent his apostles to preach the gospel, he commanded them to preach it to every creature, and added, he that believeth, and is baptised, shall be saved, and he that believeth not shall be dauned.' Mark xvi. 15, 16. In these words the final state of the believer, and unbeliever are contrasted; the one shall be saved, and the other shall be damned. Now we have no more reason to believe that the unbeliever shall enter into a different state of being after his damnation, than we have to believe that the believer shall enter into a different state of being after his salvation. Consequently,
Universalism is overthrown.
20. In John iii. 36, we have the final state of the believer, and unbeliever contrasted, as in the last objection, where it said, 'He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life; and he that be