Conditional Immortality & Universalism

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Homer
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Conditional Immortality & Universalism

Post by Homer » Mon Jul 29, 2019 4:59 pm

Steve,

Recently listening to your discussion of the final judgement in Revelations 20 I was struck by a thought I hadn't considered before and that is if immortality is conferred only upon faith in Christ (or attachment to Him) that there is no possibility of conversion in hell as the condemned would be immediately destroyed when cast into the lake of fire. This would seem to show less difference between universalism/traditionalism than either have with conditionalism/annihilationism.

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steve
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Re: Conditional Immortality & Universalism

Post by steve » Mon Jul 29, 2019 7:10 pm

Hi Homer,

Yes, if the sinner is immediately consumed when cast into the lake of fire, there would be no opportunity for him to later repent.

However, to say that human immortality is conditional (as I believe the Bible teaches) does not mean that a mortal being cannot be sustained for a period of time prior to being allowed to be consumed.

Our bodies are not immortal even now, in this life. Yet they are sustained—as is the present, temporal cosmos (2 Peter 3:7)—by the grace of God, long beyond the commission of our early sins. That is, we are condemned to death because of our sins, from a very early point in our lives, and yet many mortal sinners live 100 years beyond this point, before succumbing to inevitable death. It is the grace of God that keeps a condemned sinner alive in this world for many decades—probably to extend his opportunity to repent (2 Peter 3:9). The same grace could (possibly) be extended to mortal beings in hell as well, allowing opportunity to repent (we cannot say, but the possibility answers the difficulty you raised). This would not require that they be naturally (or otherwise) immortal.

Many conditionalists believe that there will be a period of proportionate punishment for sinners in hell, which would not involve immediate annihilation. If this is the case, then the opportunity to repent under such punishment might also be present. How long might God extend such post-mortem opportunity? God only knows.

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Homer
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Re: Conditional Immortality & Universalism

Post by Homer » Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:59 pm

Hi Steve,

You wrote:
However, to say that human immortality is conditional (as I believe the Bible teaches) does not mean that a mortal being cannot be sustained for a period of time prior to being allowed to be consumed.
I'm struggling to see any difference in mortality between the saved and the lost, when considering the traditional view and universalism. In both systems persons are born, live their natural life, die, and go to some intermediate state (or soul sleep) until the resurrection. Then there is a judgement, the saved go to be with God forever and the lost to hell (whatever it is believed to be) where they are kept alive until they repent and then go to be with God forever. So when comparing traditionalism and universalism, when is one party alive and the other not?

It would seem both are equally immortal, just exist under different conditions temporarily.

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darinhouston
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Re: Conditional Immortality & Universalism

Post by darinhouston » Thu Aug 01, 2019 10:42 pm

Maybe they would have life, but not eternal life. The idea is that it will end unless and until they repent and surrender. I do wonder if the motive matters at that point.

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Seballius
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Conditional Immortality & Universalism

Post by Seballius » Fri Aug 02, 2019 6:27 pm

Interesting thoughts


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Paidion
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Re: Conditional Immortality & Universalism

Post by Paidion » Fri Aug 02, 2019 8:58 pm

Hi Homer, you wrote:I'm struggling to see any difference in mortality between the saved and the lost, when considering the traditional view and universalism. In both systems persons are born, live their natural life, die, and go to some intermediate state (or soul sleep) until the resurrection. Then there is a judgement, the saved go to be with God forever and the lost to hell (whatever it is believed to be) where they are kept alive until they repent and then go to be with God forever. So when comparing traditionalism and universalism, when is one party alive and the other not?
Jesus had something to say about this:

Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment. (John 5:28,29 ESV)


He said nothing about an intermediate state or "soul sleep."

My opinion is that after death, we do not exist until Jesus raises us to life again. As Jesus said:

For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day." (John 6:40 ESV)
Paidion

Man judges a person by his past deeds, and administers penalties for his wrongdoing. God judges a person by his present character, and disciplines him that he may become righteous.

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Homer
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Re: Conditional Immortality & Universalism

Post by Homer » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:48 pm

Hi Paidion,

Jesus said that some hearing His words had (present indicative active) eternal life as was speaking. If those persons had eternal life prior to their death, and were then "dead as a doornail" for centuries, how could they have had eternal life? Do you see eternal life as only future or interruptible?

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Paidion
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Re: Conditional Immortality & Universalism

Post by Paidion » Sun Aug 04, 2019 7:58 pm

Deleted.
Last edited by Paidion on Sun Aug 04, 2019 8:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Paidion

Man judges a person by his past deeds, and administers penalties for his wrongdoing. God judges a person by his present character, and disciplines him that he may become righteous.

Avatar shows me at 75 years old. I am now 81.

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Paidion
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Re: Conditional Immortality & Universalism

Post by Paidion » Sun Aug 04, 2019 8:33 pm

Homer wrote:Hi Paidion,

Jesus said that some hearing His words had (present indicative active) eternal life as was speaking. If those persons had eternal life prior to their death, and were then "dead as a doornail" for centuries, how could they have had eternal life? Do you see eternal life as only future or interruptible?
I think the solution partially lies in the translation (or mistranslation) of the Greek word "αιωνιος" (aiōnios). The word doesn't mean "eternal"; it means "lasting."

The Greek word for "eternal" is "αιδιος" (aidios). This word is found in the following verse:

Ro 1:20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made.

I think from our point of view there will be no "interruption", for after our death, the next thing of which we will be aware will be being with the Lord.

I recall when I had prostate surgery, I was lying in a hospital bed in the early afternoon, and I glanced at the clock which said 1:00. Then I thought I heard a kind of tinkling sound. I glanced at the clock again and it indicated that the time was 3:30. I said aloud, "This is amazing!" The surgery was over. I had been rendered completely unconscious, and for me, it was just as if nothing at all had happened during those two and a half hours.

I think death will be like that. It will seem as if we are immediately in the presence of the Lord. For He will have raised us at the last day, even though thousands of years may have passed during which we did not exist. But for us there will be no "interruption."

So when Jesus said that whoever entrusts themselves to Him had lasting life even when He spoke, I think He meant that for those believers their life with the Lord had begun, would be continuous, and would never end.
Paidion

Man judges a person by his past deeds, and administers penalties for his wrongdoing. God judges a person by his present character, and disciplines him that he may become righteous.

Avatar shows me at 75 years old. I am now 81.

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Seballius
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Re: Conditional Immortality & Universalism

Post by Seballius » Sun Aug 04, 2019 9:05 pm

Paidion

What is your opinion of NDEs?

I have met several people who have had these types of experiences. Their stories and experiences seem reputable.


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