Jack Van Impe talks on series on Y2K - Hard Hitting

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Couldn't find Y2K on Hour of Power but did find Y2K Series on Jack Van Impe. This was the 2nd of 6 sermons. Pulls no puches. Sounds like 10+. He is on Wednesday's at 6:30 pm, Pacific Time, on TBN "channel 24 Seattle". He has also put together video on Y2K, which I ordered. I hope I can get some family members to watch it, looked like it might be very good. He quotes alot of sources and tells people to get prepared.

-- Jolann (Jolann.Leifer@PSS.boeing.com), September 24, 1998


I want to word this carefully as I don't want to offend anyone with a different belief system than I do.

Until a few years ago, I held to the "end times" teachings of preachers such as Jack Van Impe. After much study, I eventually came to the conclusion that it was most certainly a wrong interpretation of the Bible. It is beyond the scope of this newsgroup plus I don't have time to write a long discourse on why I now believe these types of teachings are in error, however I have a lot of references and information if anyone wants to contact me later.

Back to Jack.

I would take what he says with a grain of salt. Having watched him for many years, I am familiar with his style. For many years, he has taken virtually every event in the news and interpreted them in the "end times" scenario. In other words, there is nothing that could happen that he would not find a way of inserting into his belief system. Jack interprets it as a 10+ because he utterly believes that the world has a 10+ coming. Y2K is just another "proof" to him that his belief system is correct. Therefore, you will not find much objective truth in his teachings. Y2K actually seems to contradict his teachings that we are headed for a one world government under the Antichrist. If anything, Y2K will cause a breakdown in the move to one central system. However, knowing Jack's knack for skillfully manipulatimg the facts to come to his predetermined conclusion, I've no doubt he can come up with a 'convincing' ;-) set of arguments.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 24, 1998.

Craig, I agree with part of what you said about JVI, but a friend of mine called to tell me it was on last night, so I watched it. Mostly all he was doing was reporting what others had said about Y2K. In fact, several times he said, I didn't write any of this, it is not coming from me, this is what the experts are saying. He quoted Sherry Burns from the CIA, several senators, etc. I don't care what his "final conclusion" is concerning Y2K, I'm just glad he was talking about it. He was encouraging people to prepare, and it might save lives.

-- Gayla Dunbar (privacy@please.com), September 24, 1998.

Craig - You didn't offend me. I guess it's easy to get caught up in the doomsday senario with all thats going on in the world, not just Y2K. I'm glad for this forum. It helps keep your feet on the ground and to keep investigating, and not to become closed minded. I did save money by getting my money out of the stock markets several months ago because of advise on the internet. On one hand I'm preparing for Y2K and then I just received information the Snohomish County Emergency Management "Washington State" and reinforced by meteorologist/climatologist Mike McCallister thinks we may have one of the worst winters in 40/50 years and to get ready for power outages (days at a time), lots of snow (up to 100"), winds (50-70 miles an hour), and freezing temperatures this winter. At first thay stated that the prediction of extreme winter for the U.S. is reliable in the 80-90% range and be prepared; and heard from another weatherman yesterday 30% chance. (I am soooo glad I don't live on the east cost their forecast is worse). I think I'd better look into a source of alternate heat for a while "just in case", boy does that sound familiar. Maybe I'll get to practice for Y2K. Does anyone ever feel like a yoyo.

-- Jolann (Jolann.Leifer@PSS.boeing.com), September 24, 1998.

I have to agree with Gayla, there are some friends of mine who dont beleive in y2k, but they hang onto every word Jack says. So maybe they will listen. Personally, I dont trust ANY man that wears more hairspray then me!!!!!!!!

-- madeline (runner@bcpl.net), September 24, 1998.

All that I will say is that if there is someone who knows the Bible, its Jack Van Impe. Is he 100% right in his interpertations? Probably not, but I believe that he is very close.


-- Vic (Light_servant@yahoo.com), September 24, 1998.

Yeah........I would agree that if he is warning people to prepare, that's a good thing even if I find his theology a bit strange.

A little dig.........His preoccupation with saying we are now in the end times is a bit annoying. Technically he is correct, however the Apostle Paul taught that they were already in the "end times" over 1900 years ago. Therefore there is no scriptural significance to the time we are living in other than we have been in an age called the "end times" for almost 2000 years now.

And now.......back to the future.

There is of course, what I would call the Religious X-Factor to consider in all of this. That is a fairly significant number of people that will interpret Y2K through "end times" coloured glasses (also known as "Van Impes Spectacles" or "Lindseys Lenses").....sorry, can't resist.........I used to go to "end times" conventions a few years ago.........I still remember Texe Marrs telling us that even if Mother Theresa was good, that still only made her a good witch.......and lots of other assorted crap.

Anyway, many of these people that fall victim to this teaching (and the numbers will be large) will refuse to sensibly prepare for the economic problems we will be facing. When millions of Americans and .65Americans (bad joke to describe us Canadians)base all their hope on being "raptured" or miraculously zapped upwards before TSHTF (or to accomodate the Australians as per Robert Cook's school of thought - TFHTS),there will be masses (no RC pun intended) of unprepared people to add to the non-religious unprepared people.

Another factor that complicates it all, is that there are some in this mindset that actually think it is a good thing if everything falls apart and therefore may do their part to help things fall apart. They are convinced that if any leader does anything to try and bring us together to work towards a solution, then it proves that man is the "Antichrist". If this all sounds a bit weird and unlikely to you, let me assure you it is not. I was involved in this line of religious thinking for a few years and it has many many followers.

Then there are some that are completely convinced that there is no hope in even trying to take action to prepare ourselves because every bad thing that happens will be the "wrath of God". The computer is our enemy in their eyes and they relish the thought of a collapse.

Then you have another brand of fundamentalist in the middle east that may very well use the Y2K chaos as the perfect time to strike against the Great Satan (a.k.a. the USA...........hey, what a line for a song.....)Israel, Kuwait or Saudi Arabia. (I personally think someone should attack some safe smug country like Luxembourg or Wales. Luxembourg, because they have the nerve to use the letter x in their name, whereas sensible countries like the USA, Canada, Australia and Sri Lanka would never even consider such an arrogant move, and Wales because they talk funny there. This was a direct result of the attack of Eric the Red, a viking of ill repute, who in the year 38 (actually a non-compliant version of the year 1138) stormed down the coast of Wales and stole all their vowels. Evr snc thn,Wlsh ppl hv hd xtrm dffclty spkng.)

Where were we ........ yeah, war in the middle east starting sometime between June of next year and March of 2000.

Wait...a special note has just crossed my desk....It says Eric the Red was not in fact a viking, he was Dallas Cowboy. Huh huh, like I'd believe anything that reeks of unabashed Texan self promoting hype. Notice that Texas has an x in it too. That was why Mexico attacked them many years ago. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black!

Well anyway, I started out with a very serious discourse and it's getting rather silly now.......I think it's the coffee.....it's not certified compliant.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 24, 1998.

Televangelist-def.- Someone who pays a lot of money to have his hair styled to look like a bad toupe. (just kidding, Jack's OK, but what is with Benny Hinn's hair?)

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), September 24, 1998.

Craig, X happens to be a great letter when you're playing scrabble, OR if you happen to be from Texas!

You said, "Therefore there is no scriptural significance to the time we are living in other than we have been in an age called the "end times" for almost 2000 years now."

Not true IF you believe Bible prophecy. Everything changed when Israel became a nation again in 1948.

-- Gayla Dunbar (privacy@please.com), September 24, 1998.


Actually I used to study Bible prophecy intensively and became extremely knowledgable on the subject. I have been to large conventions, written many articles about it and even taught the subject. A friend and I also brought one of the world's best known authorities on it to a seminar series organized in our home town. So I am probably more familiar with it and its teachings than 99.999% of all people.

After all this study and research, there were many things that simply did not fit so I studied longer and harder. It is my opinion after all this study, research and effort, that the events commonly portrayed as "end time" events have all been fulfilled with the destruction of the temple in Israel in A.D. 70.

I do appreciate there are many points of view and that is why I like to tread carefully in this area. I have studied the creation of modern day Israel in great detail and although I believe it was no accident I also understand that it is not as significant as some would make it out to be.

I have read virtually every book by Hal Lindsay, Grant Jefferies, Jack Van Impe, Peter Lalonde, Brubaker, Texe Marrs, Barry Smith and most of the rest of the group that jumped on the Hal Lindsay bandwagon. I've analyzed all the "new age revealed" stuff by authors like Constance Cumbey, been in contact with groups such as the Tara Center who promote Lord Maitreya and the Knights of Malta etc. I've even studied early new age/occult materials in order to "prove" the modern day end times scenario.

My conclusion:

The teachings are an unfortunate misunderstanding of scripture. Once I understood early history, the whole picture became clear. Anyway, I don't expect to change your mind with one letter. If you are interested there are a couple of links that can teach you the historical perspective and shed new light on the situation. Don't be like I was. I refused to look at any other scenario for over 5 years.

But that's basically what most of us do. Only read information that we believe supports our point of view. I guess I had to learn the hard way the importance of keeping an open mind and looking at every situation from differing points of view.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 24, 1998.

Craig, I know several people who have reached the same conclusion you have. They had not done as much research as you, though, and were not as articulate. So, I am curious about your opinion of the book of Revelation, and about the Bible Code book?

-- Gayla Dunbar (privacy@please.com), September 24, 1998.

Craig...I, too am curious about your "understanding" of the book of Revelation and just what the codes mean. HOWEVER, no matter what any of our opinions are, God is still in Control of everything and He knows exactly what is going on and what is to come! You will never convince me differently. I think the two MOST crucial decisions a person needs to make right now are: Whether or not to believe that Salvation comes only by believing in Jesus Christ and whether or not to prepare for y2k! Any other decisions one might be contemplating right now don't even compare. I know that seems like kind of a bold statement, but I know there are hundreds of thousands of people who will agree with me on this. You won't convince me to see it any other way. Blondie

-- Blondie Marie (Blondie@future.net), September 24, 1998.

Apologies to any who may have seen this before. Allow me the opportunity to post it to a current thread. Mankind has been blessed (?) with spiritual awareness for over 2 Million (yes, with an M) years --- since even before he evolved into what we call Homo Sapiens. Animisn and other "earth religions" are documented well beyond a million years ago and are still practiced today.

Only 2000 years ago, more or less, came these new kids, Christ, Mohammed and Buddha. Living as they did shortly after the invention of writing and paper-and-ink technology, their story got a lot of "press." So today, a mere 2000 years later, the adherents to their viewpoint think that they are the last (not just the latest) word on spirituality. What's the definition of hubris, again?

Well, we know how clueless newbies are. Hallyx

"We must respect the other fellow's religion, but only in the sense and to the extent that we respect his theory that his wife is beautiful and his children smart."--- H.L. Mencken

-- Hallyx (Hallyx@aol.com), September 25, 1998.

Thankyou Blonde, that is exactly how I think of these things. Is their a Rapture? Is it coming before, after, or somewhere in the middle of Judgement? Is this Judgement soon to come? I don't know, and I really don't think anyone knows. I will say it is stupid to think "eh the Rapture will save me" and do nothing to prepare for hard times.


-- Vic (Light_servant@yahoo.com), September 25, 1998.

1) Hank Hannegraf, the "Bible Answer Man" at CRI (has a website) has an interesting take on this. Check him out.

Also; regardless of the theological debate, Larry Burket, a Christian Investment Counselor, and Author ( and if that isn't vanishing close to an oxymoron I don't know what is) has the recommendation of 6 months of food and 3 months of payroll saved. He is VERY well regarded both for the RIGHTNESS of his investment advice and for where he stands on the end Times/Pre-Trib/Post-Trib/Trib debate.

-- Chuck a Night Driver (rienzoo@en.com), September 25, 1998.

Where the Rapture theory is concerned, there's a good study on that subject at http:/ /www.present-truth.org/prophecy/final_verdict.html

-- John Howard (pcdir@prodigy.net), September 25, 1998.


Great stuff. I'll e-mail you for the links later. I was thoroughly impressed with your line of thought. However, as an Okie, the digs at Texas really seemed to give your arguments much more credence. I also like the WTFHTS/Aussie thing. I guess you could say that I appreciate the small and inconsequential things in life.

-- bhayes (bkhayes@intellex.com), September 25, 1998.

Watch it, bhayes! The Longhorns are going to kill those Sooners in Dallas! :-) Believe it or not, I was born in Oklahoma City and my dad graduated from OU. So I don't normally root against OU, EXCEPT when they play UT. I've been in Texas for 26 years.

-- Gayla Dunbar (privacy@please.com), September 25, 1998.


Sadly, I was born in Tyler, TX. However, I have overcome that shortcoming in my 31 years. I won't be able to make the game this year, only the pre-game golf tournament (an indication that my priorities are firmly in place). I regret to inform you that OU is actually a top 10 team this year playing poorly to fool all of you silly Texans into thinking you have a chance to win the Cotton Bowl match (a very logical strategy - much like many y2k strategies). We have a limited offense and your defense is as prepared to stop the run as Russia is for y2k. OU 27- UT 20. Boomer Sooner.

This one thread has covered many interesting topics. I never thought it would go here. I apologize to the other 99.9999% that don't know or care about the OU-Texas rivalry (one of the best in college football - not soccer for those of you outside of the US).

-- bhayes (bkhayes@intellex.com), September 25, 1998.

Yes, Chuck...Larry Burkett was on the 700 Club speaking about y2k. He is a very knowledgeable and honest man. Thanks, John for the article on the rapture. I intend to read that later this evening. Vic, I am sure that you will agree...We trust the Lord to help us through all things, no matter what, but I don't believe in sitting on one's "bottom" and doing nothing towards preparing. He has given us the resources and fore-warning to act. We aren't supposed to be idle, doing nothing, hoping that He will rapture us away in time. For those of you who do not share the same faith or have any faith at all, that is your choice...freedom of religion...for me, it is everything, the only thing. I could not bear to face y2k alone, without the Lord in my life. Without Him, there is no hope and nothing for me to look forward to down the road. Can I ask...what do the rest of you look forward to? Now and in the future? I genuinely would like to know. I am not arguing religion with any of you, but feel some times that we CAN'T share how we feel about our faith on the forum. I did look back on some previous questions since I am rather new to this forum and saw where there was some resistance to openly expressing one's faith. I realize this is a y2k forum, but seems like anyone can mention all sorts of topics, concerns or opinions. Would like to know your thoughts...please be nice, though! :-) Blondie

-- Blondie Marie (Blondie@future.net), September 25, 1998.

Where to start with this?????

Hereis a good place to start to understand how I understand the Book of Revelation

Revelation is the hardest book of the Bible to understand as it is written using so many symbols and figurative language. In a nutshell, history clearly shows that the events described in the book were fulfilled in the year 70 A:D: with the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem. Anyway, there is far too much to cover here but will send more links to study to anyone who is interested. Blondie wrote <> I wouldn't try to convince you differently. I agree fully with you. As a matter of fact, I would venture to say that my belief in God being in control is far stronger than your belief in the same. Let me explain. It appears from your writings that you are a partialist, which probably 99% of all people fall into this category. A partialist is anyone who believes that God will only save a portion of mankind. A partialist believes that the will of man supercedes the will of God, or in other words, God is not in complete control. Although I am not particularly interested in putting a label on my beliefs, the label that is put on those with a belief system such as mine, is Christian Universalist. In other words, God is in COMPLETE control, even to the point that man's "free will" cannot thwart his ultimate plan. I think you would agree, that God WILLS that all men be saved. I think you would also agree that Satan wills that all men be tormented forever. I think you would agree that most religions, particularly the fundamentalist varieties, believe that only a portion of mankind will be saved. If the creator of the universe can not have what he wants and wills, then very logically, by definition, he cannot be in complete control. You see, I can truly believe God has complete control because from the beginning he had a plan that would culminate in the eventual salvation of all man and the destruction of all evil. Granted, his timetable is not ours, and there are more ages to come before we reach the fullness of his plan. Blondie also wrote <> About part 2, yeah, definitely prepare for Y2K. God's not going to "rapture" anyone out of it. Actually the word rapture does not exist in scripture. The reference to those being taken away was again fulfilled in 70 A:D: and it was not a particularly nice taking away. About part 1, about believing in Jesus Christ.......yeah......but it is impossible for anyone to believe until their own appointed time making altar calls rather redundant (I'll just bet no one will challenge that......!!!!!!)and scripture is also very clear that one day every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father. That fits in perfectly with God's plan for the salvation of ALL. I could quote a hundred verses or so to back this up but that can wait for the time being. Let me be blunt. I think you would agree with me that God is all loving. I think you would agree with me that God is all knowing. Most people's theology has God somehow caught by surprise by Lucifer's fall, so the best he can come up with is a plan that results in only a handful of his children living in bliss forever while the other 95% get tortured forever. Now if God's foreknowledge is half of what the Bible claims it is, he would have foreseen the ugly final picture. Now the logical conclusion (certain to tick off the religious community........at least all the different brands of partialists) is this: IF God created EVEN ONE PERSON, knowing that they even had a one in a million chance of spending an eternity in torment let alone a likelihood of it, then God makes Hitler look like a boy scout. Hitler was only interested in physically killing the imperfect or what he percieved to be imperfect. Most of the Christian community insists that their LOVING God, not only is interested in allowing the physical death of those he created in his own image, but is determined to ensure that most of them are kept in some sort of state of awareness so he can ensure that they suffer intensely FOREVER. It's not a pretty picture when it is laid out that clearly is it? By the way, what we call hell is simply the old testament sheol, which is translated as the grave. Eventually even hell will be cast into the lake of fire, clearly symbolic of the destruction of even death itself. There was absolutely no scripture whatsoever in the old testament that described the final punishment of evil men as anything more than physical death and nothing to preclude even evil men from coming to the truth in a later age. In many many scriptures, God warned Israel about all kinds of plagues and punishments, even down to minor details such as having their sheep killed and being overrun by giant bugs (I can't spell pestilence). However, NOWHERE was anyone warned about being tortured forever as a result of their actions. This is like your boss telling you that if you do something wrong, he will dock $5.00 off your next paycheck. You do something wrong and he not only takes the five bucks, but he fires you, sticks a red hot poker up your bum, places you in an acid bath that slowly burns off your skin, tortures your wife and children whilst forcing you to listen to Barry Manilow records. Like, thanks for the warning about the five bucks buddy!! The concept of eternal torment actually leaked into Israel's mindset during the 400 years of silence and came from the Greeks who had borrowed from the Babylonians et al. The error was cleaned up by the early church and virtually all of the early church fathers believed in the eventual salvation of all mankind. Of course, as the years progressed and Rome mixed the religious power with secular power, the old "pagan hellfire and brimstone God'll burn your butt unless you obey us" teachings came into the forefront as a great way to keep the average Joe under control and merrily contributing to the coffers. Enough already........getting kind of preachy How does all this fit into Y2K. I believe man's arrogance and corruption sometimes culminates in very unpleasant circumstances which are designed to teach us something. It is not that God is all pissed off and can't wait to get us..............as a matter of fact, scripture clearly teaches that all wrath was finished at the cross, leaving only love. However, during this "age", we sometimes reap the harvest of our foolishness. Managers that wouldn't fix their code because it would cost too much......those in office that wouldn't take action because it would cost them votes.......Those that wouldn't speak up in time because they might be ridiculed.....The list goes on. I am glad to see that the folks here, whatever their brand of religion (even if most of ya are partialists.........dig dig) understand that the prudent and responsible thing to do is to prepare for the worst and pray for the best. I am concerned that there will be many many Americans and Canadians who will fall into this "I'm not preparing because we're outa here" mindset and also about those that will suffer extreme emotional torment because they believe that the God who "loves" them, somehow is going to start torturing all those members of their families who don't get "saved" in time. Hey, do you know why there are no x's in Alberta. Because all our x's live in Texas.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 25, 1998.

Re: my above discourse

Sorry, I forgot this site is HTML sensitive so when quoting Blondie I used the double<> symbols resulting in her quote being treated as HTML code and thus not showing up. I guess the expression, "If you live by the sword, you die by the sword" applies to me!! Anyway, I was referring to one of Blondies contributions a few posts up the page.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 25, 1998.


I have seen your faith come through in your posts loud and clear, and yet I havent, nor has anyone else to my recollection, seen fit to attack you for them. In fact I believe that I may have even answered a question or two that you had, in an attempt to try and help you to prepare wisely. I have no chit sheet where I keep track of who Im willing to help, depending upon on whether or not I agree with their religious beliefs.

A lot of it (rebuttal of religious postings) seems to me to be related to how you express that belief. An attack of a post seems to depend a great deal on whether or not your post includes a reflection of the joy your faith gives you, or if on the other hand, that post seems to be intended on criticizing the belief systems of others, in an attempt to convert them to your point of view. It is all in how you come across to others.

It is not easy for me to pin down exactly what it is about a particular post that irks me, I just know when one does. A holier than thou, sanctimonious attitude, a I understand all, and you had best get with the program posting is a recipe for rebuttal from all corners. A post that includes Im glad that I have my faith to help carry me through the tough times does not often draw fire, at least from what I have seen.

As to the question of what and how I believe, that is between Him and me. He will tell me if I have done well by Him when we meet. I am not shy about what I believe, but nor will I ram it down the throats of others. If you wish to know more, ask.

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), September 26, 1998.

Thanks, Craig! Guess I have to own up to being a 'partialist'! But I really enjoy reading someone who can clearly expound a contrary position with good reasons, humor and politeness.

-- Virlie (MstMtnRain@aol.com), September 26, 1998.

Thank you, Uncle Deedah for your answer in your post. I have never meant to have a "holier than thou attitude" nor have I tried to cram religion down anyone's throat. Often someone writes "How are you coping? Is anyone scared?" etc. If I just said "no, I am fine...I can handle all of this" (or the likes) I would be lying. I have tried to be very honest here. I know for ME having faith in the Lord makes a world of difference...so how do we know if it wouldn't make a difference or help someone else? We don't! If I am asked, I will respond...I don't run around trying to convince everyone. Maybe I should have said for ME the two MOST important deciscions in my life right now that I HAVE made are Having the Lord in my life and Deciding to prepare for y2k. How is that? Because that IS how I cope. Enough said. I still have not fully comprehended Craig's post yet though. In fact I found myself saying...Pastor Chris, where are you? Not that he would be THE expert, but I would still value his opinion. Uncle Deedah, I am sure that your relationship is a personal thing between you and the LORD and I wasn't judging or criticizing you. You mention ed about the day you will meet Him (or go before him) well....I want to be prepared for that too, just in case y2k is a 10+ I do promise never to preach to anyone here. Share perhaps, but not preach! Thanks to all of you on this forum. Blondie

-- Blondie Marie (Blondie@future.net), September 26, 1998.

Blondie writes "I have never meant to have a "holier than thou attitude" nor have I tried to cram religion down anyone's throat"

I'm sorry if I was unclear Blondie, I did not mean to imply that I was refering to you. You are correct in your statement quoted above, that is why you haven't been attacked ;) Most people are willing to listen about how a poster feels in this department, as long as they do not feel as though a poster is 'correcting' the reader's belief.

Insofar as "Uncle Deedah, I am sure that your relationship is a personal thing between you and the LORD and I wasn't judging or criticizing you." I know you weren't, again, that is why you haven't been attacked ;)

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), September 26, 1998.

Blondie and Uncle Deedah, I just love it when people are nice to each other. You both did a good job sharing your feelings.

Craig, I enjoy "listening" to you, too. A couple of questions: about the sheol and torment thing- In Luke 16:22-24, it says "And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died and was buried; and in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame." Sounds pretty hot to me! How do you view that? Also, when Jesus prayed in the garden before his death, why did he say, "Not my will, but thine?" Did he, or didn't he have the choice? What do you think?

-- Gayla Dunbar (privacy@please.com), September 26, 1998.

Those are some pretty good questions, Gayla. Also, I read the article on the rapture that John Howard mentioned. I don't know if you read it or not. I will admit that since I became a Christian in 1984 that I believed that there would be a rapture and we believers would be taken away and spared from the awful times during the tribulation. I must say that I am totally speechless after reading what it said! I would like to hear your (and anybody elses) opinion on this. Please. This is a real surprise to me...... Blondie

-- Blondie Marie (Blondie@future.net), September 26, 1998.

Did Jesus have a choice at that point? He had a choice, but as he was one with the Father he would have made no choice other than the choice of the Father.

As far as Abraham's bosom goes, this article is the best summary of the topic that I have found. I think it really covers it all.

I do appreciate the over all kind attitude that I see displayed in this group. It is especially rare, particularly when anything religious or spiritual is being discussed, to see such a kind attitude. If you want a real eye-opener about how vicious a newsgroup can get, you'll find no better example that some of the "Christian" newsgroups. Total immersioners slandering sprinklers, tongue-speakers casting the frozen chosen to the depths of hell, Lutherans bashing Catholics, Calvinists cursing Arminianists, Wooden tractor tirists trying to cast Satan out of rubber tirists...........okay, maybe the last one is stretching the point a bit.........the last group don't even have electricity let alone internet access, but if they did!!!! Anyway, I guess the point has been made. The irony of it all is that they would all stop fighting and gang up on........no, not the atheists........not the agnostics..........not Marilyn Manson supporters, not new agers, not even hard core satanists. No, the only group they would join forces together to slander and trash were "Christian Universalists" such as myself. They'd spend all day arguing amongst themselves which of them were really saved............until someone pointed out that God loved them all and would eventually save them all......and my Lord, you'd see all hell break loose. I can see the funny side of it now and laugh about it but for the first while it was kind of hairy. Hope you're all enjoying the weekend! We got frost already. Aaaaaaaargh. Does Aaaaaaaargh have six a's or seven? Never quite sure. Plus Spellcheck is a complete waste of time. It has no suggestions unless I only put 3 a's in it then it suggests words like agree, argue and argil. Yeah right, like I know what an argil is!

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 26, 1998.

Enjoyed your response, Craig. I wonder what the Lord thinks when He sees all those Christians arguing about this or that denomination or doctrine or whatever. I respect everyones opinion and I won't judge anyone...that is not for me to do! First, only the Lord truely knows any of our hearts and second I try to be at peace with everybody. There is enough conflict in the world as it is. I have been learning since 1984 about my faith, the Lord, the Bible etc. I will keep on learning new truths til the day I die. For me it is a growing process and I will never be to the place where I know everything. But for now, I know in my heart that I believe in the Lord, even though I don't know how everything in life will play out and I also know in my heart that a y2k crisis will happen, even though I don't know exactly how it will play out either. Oh, and I know that I am willing to be a good listener here on this forum and share with all of you fine people, also. I will mention that once when I was looking back through the posts and different threads here on this forum, I did see where it got a little ugly when someone told "Will" I believe it was, to go to Hell. So I thought I should always be discerning as to whatever I write and I never intend to offend anyone. Thanks, Blondie

-- Blondie Marie (Blondie@future.net), September 26, 1998.

It is OK to 'offend' others once in a while if you are trying to point out holes in their logic, or even if you're just against the point of view stated in that post. That is what public discourse is all about, it keeps us from becoming a society of "yes men". I'm sure that I have posted responses that have offended others, sometimes I knew ahead of time that my response would cause debate, even a little anger. There is nothing inherently wrong with poking at someone's sails, if you think they are a little too full of wind. It keeps us all honest, and on our toes.

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), September 26, 1998.

Okay....thanks! :-) Blondie

-- Blondie Marie (Blondie@future.net), September 26, 1998.

To Uncle Deedah,

I agree, you #%#&@^^%#**@#$........hahahahah, just kidding!

You make an extremely good point. It is important to stand up for what we think it true and at the same time, not be so dogmatic that we are not open to other ideas. I think it is the "tone" of the letters we write that is important. I could absolutely 100% completely and totally disagree with you on a topic or point and still treat you with respect and like you as a person. The choices we have in what we say range from "I disagree with your point of view because logically, the evidence shows me that ..........." or some would say "Oh, you must be an absolutely brain dead pervert to fall for such a crock.............."

The choice of how we say what we say probably speaks loudest as to what our motives are for saying it.

But we certainly don't need any more "Yes " men. Or should I say "Yes" persons. I suppose either's okay unless I fall to the depths of using words such as "personhole covers, personmaglobin or personnaquin"

Our governments, businesses, churches etc. are filled with Yes persons. I consider the yes man syndrome one of the major causes of Y2K. Very few people will stand up and say anything against the business leaders and politicians that are telling us everything will be just fine.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 26, 1998.

Craig, FASCINATING discussion! Another question- what about Matthew 7:21-23, Jesus talking: "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity." And how about this one- also spoken by Jesus about people who didn't help their brother in need, Matthew 25:41, "Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels." and verse 46: "And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal."

-- Gayla Dunbar (privacy@please.com), September 26, 1998.


In this age salvation is unto "as many as are ordained unto eternal life" (Acts 13:48). But in the ages to come there shall be a displaying of God's matchless grace through His beloved sons that "the residue of men shall seek after the Lord, and all the nations over whom My name is called." If this is not true then "reigning with Christ" is absolutely ridiculous and purposeless. But, blessed be God! the word is sure: "...the God of heaven shall set up a Kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the Kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume (take into itself) ALL THESE KINGDOMS, and it shall stand for ever" (Dan. 2:44).

The confusion lies in the terrible translation job done for the word forever. I would recommend a study of the topic as one or two sentences doesn't do it justice. For example, there is a reference in the old testament to the destruction of a city and it says that the smoke of the destroyed city would rise forever. If you go to Israel today, you can clearly see that the smoke no longer rises. The reference to what we poorly translate as forever, is better described as the period of time until what needs to be accomplished, is accomplished. In other words, a slave would belong to his master forever, forever meaning until he either was released or physically died.

The apostle Paul, speaking on Mars Hill, told the Athenians, "...God ... hath appointed a day, in the which He will judge the world in righteousness by that Man whom He hath ordained; whereof He hath given assurance unto all men, in that He hath raised Him from the dead" (Acts 17:31). This passage sets forth four wonderful truths: (1) God has appointed A DAY (2) In that DAY He shall JUDGE THE WORLD in righteousness (3) lie shall JUDGE THE WORLD by that MAN whom He hath ordained (4) This ASSURANCE is given unto ALL MEN.

The judgment day is not a day of eternal doom, but a blessed day of ASSURANCE TO ALL MEN. But how is that assurance given unto all men? In just this way. God has appointed a day, an indefinite period of time in which He will in righteousness JUDGE THE WORLD by a MAN whom He has ordained for that purpose. That Man of course is His Son, and His Son died the death of all humanity, but this assurance hes in the fact that GOD RAISED HIM FROM THE DEAD. The assurance given UNTO ALL is, that as God dealt with His own Son in this particular, He will also deal with ALL HUMANITY.

This is the point that is overlooked by the vast majority of preachers and teachers and churches in this day. Today, all depends upon whether or not the person accepts the teaching of a particular church, submitting to its ordinances and rituals, embracing the doctrine which is held by all its members. Having done that, the particular church then assures the new member that he is a Christian and that he is going to a place called heaven. But the assurance of God does not rest upon any such frail foundation. God's assurance rests upon the FACT of the resurrection of His own Son, and that assurance is given not to a select few, but to ALL MEN.

When we understand that God is not limited by time and his patience endures forever, we can start to see that he can and will ultimately fulfill his plan for the restoration of all creatures and creation. Granted, in the meantime there will be judgements. The symbolism of fire in judgement is perfectly clear however. The purpose of fire is to purify, not to inflict pain. In the end, even death and hell are thrown into the fire to be purified.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 26, 1998.

Craig, no offense intended, but it sure seems like a convenient religion. It doesn't matter what you believe or don't believe. It doesn't matter what you do or don't do. Everyone eventually gets to go to Heaven no matter what. According to God, He is a Righteous Judge. I don't know of any "earthly" judges that could remain a judge if they pardoned everyone, do you? I have a hard time picturing Adolph Hitler and Billy Graham living side by side in Heaven. Guess I must be a "partialist." :-) Enjoyed the debate, though!

-- Gayla Dunbar (privacy@please.com), September 27, 1998.


It's the central theme of the whole book. You can't work your way to heaven.

When you see a Hitler, the attitude that God wants you to have is one of "there but by the grace of God go I".

Certainly, Hitler won't be in heaven until the appointed time when God in his mercy gives him the gift of salvation. It will be later, rather than sooner, when he falls into the "every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father" category.

Natural human thinking wants to believe that we are always good enough to earn our own way and the other guy is never good enough.

If you think that Hitler should be judged by the deeds of the flesh, then God holds you accountable to the same scale of justice, which brings forth only death.

Sure, you've lived a better life than Hitler, but not good enough by a perfect standard.

Actually, it's not a convenient religion at all. 99% of people are hell bent on believing that in some way their works are what saves them in the end. Oh, they talk a good story about salvation by faith, but don't really believe it. It's actually quite inconvenient to go against the grain. Most pastors absolutely don't want my family or I to go to their churches, or if we do they expect us to remain silent. Our only crime, our God, our Jesus, our Holy Spirit is just a lot bigger than theirs.

The fact is, and this is maybe hard to hear, that it is a murderous spirit that desires that anyone be tormented without end. The God you describe: His mercies do not endureth forever. The God I describe: His mercies do endure forever. Choose who you want to serve!!

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 27, 1998.

O man, I have been gone for a couple of days and you all left me in the dust. Thats probably ok because all i'd do is offend someone, by my almost total inablity to express myself.

I would like to make a few comments though. All through the Bible God has apprecieted people of low and Humble backgrounds. That has always made me cautious of highly educated people, very intelegent people, and so on, including pastors. It is my opinion that these people "generally" think that they have all the answers, that is why I feel very cautious of what Craig has to say. That doesnt mean that I think all Inteligent people are evil or anything stupid like that or that all stupid people are Christians. I try to approach ideas that are new to me with an open mind, and compare the idea with the Bible. To me the Bible is everything "now if I just lived my life that way".

So what im trying to say is that Craig has brought up some good things to ponder, some of which could very well be true; however, for me their is a literal Hell, and all who do not submit there will to God and ask Jesus to be thier Saviour is going there. You can point out whatever studies or articles that have twisted the meanings of Scriptures to support otherwise, but it will not change my above point, or my opinion of it. I'd like to caution all who would read the above posts to not change their opinion until they have compared what they have read to the Bible.

As I stated before I don't know about when or if the "Rapture", but I do know that there is plenty of Scripture that supports being prepared for endtime events, and I distinctly feel we are arriving shortly. I wish I could throw about a bunch of those Scriptures but I have lived most of my life as one of the luke warm Christians as described in the early chapters of Revalations, but am dedicating the rest of my life to being one of the Christians as described in Revalations, the ones described as the church of Philadelphia.

-- Vic (Light_servant@yahoo.com), September 27, 1998.

O man, I have been gone for a couple of days and you all left me in the dust. Thats probably ok because all i'd do is offend someone, by my almost total inablity to express myself, but here goes anyway.

All through the Bible God has apprecieted people of low or Humble backgrounds. That has always made me cautious of highly educated people, very inteligent people, and so on, including pastors. It is my opinion that these people "generally" think that they have all the answers, that is why I feel very cautious of what Craig has to say. That doesnt mean that I think all Inteligent people are evil or anything stupid like that or that all stupid people are Christians. I try to approach ideas that are new to me with an open mind, and compare the idea with the Bible. To me the Bible is everything "now if I just lived my life that way".

So what im trying to say is that Craig has brought up some good things to ponder, some of which could very well be true; however, for me their is a literal Hell, and all who do not submit their will to God and ask Jesus to be thier Saviour is going there. You can point out whatever studies or articles that have twisted the meanings of Scriptures to support otherwise, but it will not change my above point, or my opinion of it. I'd like to caution all who would read the above posts to not change their opinion until they have compared what they have read to the Bible.

As I stated before I don't know about when or if the "Rapture", but I do know that there is plenty of Scripture that supports being prepared for endtime events, and I distinctly feel we are arriving shortly. I wish I could throw out a bunch of those Scriptures but I have lived most of my life as one of the luke warm Christians as described in the early chapters of Revalations, but am dedicating the rest of my life to being one of the Christians as described in Revalations, the ones described as the church of Philadelphia.

I hope you don't view this as an attack Craig, because its not. Its just an expression of my opinion.


-- Vic (Light_servant@yahoo.com), September 27, 1998.

O cool, I was so concerned I posted it twice, thanks- autologoff. The second post I made a few corrections. Thanks for your patience, I'll leave all you nice people alone again for awhile.


-- Vic (Light_servant@yahoo.com), September 27, 1998.

I'm glad you felt lead to post that Vic, I feel the same way. I know that we all agreed that it would be best not to "cram our own belief down others throat", so I hope I don't offend anyone. But I'm curious Craig,you acknowledge that Death is destroyed in the end-doesn't that speak volumes? From that point on, no one will ever die. They will live eternally wherever their judgement put them. You have to ask yourself the question, "if God will eventualy will save all of mankind, why would the Scriptures state," Be merciful to those who doubt, snatch others from the fire and save them.." Jude 1:22,23 Or in Matthew 5;13-16 when it talks about being salt and light? And as far as being a "partialist", consider Matthew 7:13-14: "Enter through the narrow gate.For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life and only a few will find it." Where in the Bible does it say that after you die you get a second chance? I'd be wary of developing a doctine that is not there. Revelation 20:15 "If anyone's name was not found in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire." REV.21:27,"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". I'm curious as to why when people on this forum are resistant to religious debates, that more of us are not on Pastor Chris' forum.

-- madeline (runner@bcpl.net), September 27, 1998.

This is the last post on this thread I will make. Yes, I could spend hours answering every scripture but until your hearts are opened up to see the truth, I would be wasting my time. You see, I used to believe the falsehoods that I see many of you clinging to. Blanket statements such as "it's in the Bible so I believe it" show a lack of depth of study of God's Word. Sometimes that statement is used as a kind of attack to imply that any with opposing views don't believe "all" of the Bible and other times it's just done as a quick and easy way to avoid real study.

Let me give you an example: Pentecostals, when defending speaking in tongues today will often say something like "if it's in the Bible, then I do it because I believe all of the Bible!". Often it's used as a kind of insult to non-pentecostals implying that somehow they don't believe all the Bible. The truth is, both groups believe all the Bible, they simply have come to different conclusions after looking at all the facts.

I completely understand all the scriptural verses that I see quoted here. Until a few years ago, I would have argued vehemently against my position today. It was only when my eyes were opened to the fullness of the love of God that I my mind was changed. I am now a much happier loving human being than I was in my heyday of fundamentalism.

Shoot, one of the above comments even implies that God hates intelligence and we are better off being stupid or non-educated. How foolish! The same God who sent Jesus created the earth, created the atom, created the eyeball, created mathematics and calculus. He is the God of science and physics...............yet most Christians limit themselves to parroting what one pastor told them is the truth without ever seeking God themselves or being open to learning greater things. It's tragic!

Anyone that is a point in their life where they need true peace about who God is, Under justice, punishment for sins committed CAN NOT exceed the crime. In other words, if you murder someone, your life can be taken. It is absolutely perverted and sick to believe that if a man even lives a bad life on this earth, that it is justice for him to be tortured for millions and millions of years. If that is your mindset, then you have not yet experienced the love of God. I don't care how many "sinners prayers" you have said, YOU DO NOT KNOW GOD.

BTW, the Apostle Paul, who wrote the bulk of what we call the new testament taught a far different gospel than what most people ever hear in their churches. There are two things he never even mentions in his gospels, those being "confessing our sins" and "hell".

So what are the two FAVOURITE topics of most of our churches: "confessing our sins" and "hell".

Go figure!

Before God even created Lucifer, he knew what the results would be. Here is a bold truth which most people cannot handle. IF, God created Lucifer, knowing that the final result of his creation would be a situation where most of mankind (or even if only a handful)would end up rotting in torment, in conscious pain, for a period of time without end, then that God would be the pinnacle of evil.

If however, God had a plan right from day 1, that would ensure that all his creation would willingly eventually return home and we would all live in love and peace with him, then this God would be the pinnacle of love.

Some startling facts for you: About 70% of all people in mental institutions in the USA are "born again" Christians. There is no wonder they are there! Go down to the local hospital and ask to visit someone in the burn ward. See how they writhe in pain. Now imagine, the God who loves you, has sent someone you love to a fate worse than this that never ends. Think about it long enough and you will be the next into the mental institution. This is reality folks!

Here's another dichotomy: Capital Punishment: The percentage of people that support it in the USA is HIGHEST among "born again Christians". These are the SAME people that believe when the switch is pulled, the man will spiral down to a place of unimaginable horrors which will continue as perpetual torment forever.

I tell you the truth. The spirit of Jesus is NOT in these people. There is no love or mercy or compassion or loving kindness in these people. They are not better off, no, they are actually much worse than the murderer.

Here's a real good test about what spirit leads you. If you are angry, it is the spirit of murder that controls your thinking.

Have you ever studied the perfection of the musical scale or the architecture of a honeycomb (not the cereal Robert). God, the master creator did that. The whole of creation is like a construction site and the projects under construction right now. But in the fullness of time, God's finished picture will appear. Now right from the beginning, God decided what the final picture will be. The final picture will be one of complete peace and harmony among all men and all creation, the restitution of all things. Sodom will be restored to her former estate for heavens sake!

If your final picture is one of God only saving a handful of those created in his own image, whilst the rest of his feeling and thinking creation get to experience horrors unimaginable for time without end, then I truly feel sorry for you. Perhaps the most sensible thing to do would be to check yourself into the mental institution now before they have to come and get you!!

Anyway, as I said, do some serious study on this on your own and you will find the fullness of the love and mercy of God. It's quite refreshing.

-- Craig (
craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 27, 1998.


Did this end the hyperlink. It was only a two word one that apparently ignored the closing tag.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 27, 1998.

I did not state that God hates Inteligence.. He hates pride, and in MY opinion inteligent people lend themselves to pride, but not in all cases obviously.


-- Vic (Light_servant@yahoo.com), September 27, 1998.

I see that you have offered a lot of information, Craig, and voice your faith at how God is loving and kind. I also see that Gayla , Madeline and Vic present their understandings as well. Yes, Revelation clearly says that if your name is not found in the Book of Life, you may not enter into Heaven. I see that God is kind and loving but the Bible clearly talks about the wrath of God, also. I see that plainly in that Lot's wife was turned into a pillar of salt! This has been quite a discussion. All I really intended to happen when I started my post was that I would be able to help others by letting them know that my faith in the Lord was helping me cope and prepare for y2k. I never wanted any debate or arguing, just the freedom to share and not force "religion" or my beliefs on anyone. I did in the process, learn something which was quite shocking, though, to me...the fact that the "rapture" probably doesn't exist. (This from the article that John Howard listed.) I can't believe that I never questioned it before, but now I have been doing some research on it. (We're never too old to learn something new, right Gayla?) Because of this , I am now going to get back into my Bible reading and prayer like I should have been doing all along. Since many, many people believe that Christ's return is soon...I want to be ready to go before Him and not be ashamed! Thank you all for your imput. I hope that we all learned from each other something new, even if we still have our own opinions on things. Yes, Madeline...I tried to get into Pastor Chris' website or the chat room, but wasn't successful the first time. Of course, I will try again soon. Sincerely Blondie

-- Blondie Marie (Blondie@future.net), September 27, 1998.

Thanks for your input Blondie.

I think it really sums it up that there is always something we can learn.

One last note. If you get a chance, have a study at how the word "wrath" has had its meaning altered dramatically over the centuries. The early church understood it to be along the lines of an anger for the purpose of correcting those that were astray. God's wrath is a GOOD thing. It is designed to chastise and bring to correction whether in this age or in another age. It was never translated as we would tend to do it now as "uncontrollable anger designed to harm another". Just as loving parents judge their rebellious children and punish them in order to bring correction, so God who is ever more loving than we could ever be, judges and punishes to bring correction and obedience.

There are those that say, "Oh well, if God isn't going to let me be tormented forever, then I won't waste my time serving him." But you know what, that only reveals the heart of the person that says that. If they are obedient because of fear of punishment, big deal. God wants servants that are obedient out of love. And true love never comes from fear.

Take care.

BTW, I am meeting with the head of our city's Y2k program tomorrow evening to find out exactly how we are doing and discuss the setting up of an information web site for them. Should be an interesting meeting!

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 27, 1998.

Craig, I don't mean this to be a slam. I honestly have never heard your viewpoint before. I was wondering about Jesus' disciples. Now they lived with Jesus. They saw Him die and rise again. If anyone knew what was required for salvation, the disciples did. After Jesus went up into heaven, they suffered great persecution for preaching Christ. The majority of them were killed for preaching the Gospel. Why would they put themselves through all of this if they believed that all men will go to heaven anyway?

Also, someone mentioned Pastor Chris' Forum. He recently gave the address for his chat room. However, for those of your who are new here, Pastor Chris also has a forum just like this one for Christians. The address is: http://greenspun.com/bboard/q-and-a.tcl?topic=Y2K%20Forum

-- none (none@none.com), September 27, 1998.

To none,(you know, the none@none.whatever above, not literally none) I'm not really surprised you haven't heard it before. When Rome became the center of organized religion by mixing the gospel with secular control, much truth was lost or distorted. Again, that is not a slant against any individual Roman Catholics. Many of my good friends are Roman Catholics and are among the most faithful people I know. As far as the disciples knowing all the details about salvation....They certainly did not. The gospel was not revealed until Paul was taught it directly from the Holy Spirit, probably somewhere around 50AD. As a matter of fact, it was resisted furiously by many of the disciples, especially Peter and James. (Read the book of Acts). They were determined to attain righteousness by the law and Paul had a real tough time of it initially. Peter wouldn't even accept that salvation was for the Gentiles as well as the Jews until God showed him through the vision of the unclean animals. So the disciples understanding was indeed limited. If you remember, Paul was not even one of the initial disciples, but was chosen by God when he was still Saul, a persecutor of the church. Because the disciples were so steeped in the law, God had to use an outsider to correct them. The disciples continued in their work for a number of very important reasons. First of all, the gospel needed to spread. The world was steeped in superstition and paganism and needed to know the love of God. Secondly, the fact that God would eventually save all does not make it wise to ignore him, and thus have to suffer his wrath (correction). That can be incredibly painful and unnecessary. Incidently, the concept of a place of torment that lasts forever did not originate with the Bible. The Jews knew nothing about such a foreign concept (read the old testament, not a word about it. They clearly understood hell (Sheol) as being the grave. Even King David in the Psalms says "even though I descend unto Sheol......". The people of Israel picked up the concept when they started to accept paganism from the Babylonians and Greeks during the 400 years of silence from about 400BC to the time of Christ. Clearly the concept of being tormented for time without end was, and is pagan. You can also see that teaching in Zoroastrianism which I believe came from Persia. As Israel had continued in their disobedience, God did not send them a prophet for over 400 years, thus rendering them succeptible to the teachings of other false religions. BTW, the church at Corinth (Read 1st and 2nd Corinthians) were the most carnal (worldly) church there was. They were involved in every type of sexual perversion, got drunk at Communion etc., all in all a pretty bad bunch........What was Pauls' response to them.....he reminded them what Christ had done for them and who they were in Christ. NEVER, did he threaten them with hellfire. Actually, he never threatened anyone with hellfire, ever. So paganism exists in the churches today. No big surprise. Our loving God is blasphemed continually by those that would paint him with the same characteristics as Satan.

Here, if you want to know everything the Bible teaches about Hell, go here.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 27, 1998.

I'm certainly not qualified to challenge Craig on every point that he offers in such scholarly fashion, but why does he offer it here where most posters have disaster on their minds, and probably have limited knowledge of the Bible? He ought to try flying his balloon on North's Christian forum, challenging scholars to look at Universalism. Why, those theologians would eat him alive... and he knows it.

The best he can do here is to tell everyone not to worry... cause we're all gonna be O.K. Just like today's prophets for hire utter a few kind words over a dead corpse to soothe sorrowing loved ones, Craig is planting seeds in the minds of young, weak, or untaught believers who are swayed by his apparent understanding of Scripture. Those seeds could sprout into tares that will choke out every grain of good wheat that God is sowing in the lives of His people, just like a herd of swine turned into a field of clover.

Craig speaks as if his finite wisdom is more than equal to that of Almighty God! He states that if God created Lucifer knowing that most of mankind would ultimately suffer untold torment, then God would be the pinnacle of evil. Well, God did just that! He is omniscient (knows all), and just because human wisdom chooses to question, or dares to judge the foreknowledge of God, that does not change the unchangeable God. "Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honor, and another unto dishonor? What if God, willing to show His wrath, and to make His power known, endoured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted for destruction" (Romans 9:21-22).

Craig says that Paul never mentioned "confessing our sins" and "hell" in his gospels. Well, first of all, Paul didn't write any gospels. He wrote letters to established churches where true believers gathered together. This is not to say that Paul didn't preach the gospel, (which he did, as clearly seen in the book of Acts), nor does it mean he didn't call believers to confess their sins, which John did, and mentions in his letters to the church. True believers are no longer in danger of Hell, so Paul probably didn't need to mention it.

Even if Paul NEVER mentioned Hell or the confession of sins, this would in no wise be of any comfort to sinners. The Bible alone and in its entirety is the Word of God, and every proof text must be weighed, balanced, and supported by the rest of the Bible.

Craig appears to have a great appreciation for God, and may indeed be among the elect of God. But, to put all his confidence in God as just a God of love and peace, without contemplating Him as a God of wrath, is reckless faith. The writer of Hebrews, (probably Paul) says: "For our God is a consuming fire" (Heb. 12:29). He is also spoken of this way in the Old Testament. "For the Lord our God is a consuming fire, even a jealous God". (De. 4:24 and De. 9:3).

I don't propose to teach Craig anything, nor do I deny him the right to have his own opinion on scripture, but as Arcy said to Buddy, something like: "If I quote the Bible and it offends you, your beef is with God and not with me. But, if I give you my opinion and it offends you, I would hope you are wise enough to simply ignore me". Craig's opinion on scripture is offensive me and probably to most evangelical believers. It does NOT encourage sinners to repent nor does it promote righteous living to the glory of God. It is totally in conflict with God's plan of salvation, and in fact, it encourages loose and careless living and should be avoided.

Every admitted athiest today won't necessarily wind up in hell, and all universalists are not necessarily lost, but they "unfortunately misunderstand scripture" as Craig says of some of us. If they choose to publicly promote Universalism they become "heretics" who must be avoided, just as Craig, by his own admission, is being avoided by most churches. The reason for this is that Universalism isn't just another way of looking at scriptural truth, it's a damnable heresy that some dear folks have bought into, and that's why the Bible says: "Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they be of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world" (1-John.4:1).

-- Merle (merle.b@usa.net), September 27, 1998.

This post is a good example of what I mean. Gee, it must be nice to know everything.

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), September 27, 1998.

I'm not smart enough to get into this debate, but I do have the Spirit of Christ that wispers in my ears now an then. Right about now I'm hearin him say Gayla and Blondie an Merel is speaking the truth. Uncel Deedah is not happy with what Merel said and aught not to put him down. He never said he knew everything, I guest he just shared how he felt.

I notice that Uncel Deedah didn't put down the others that shared, probaly because they didn't make him uncomftable like Merl did. Jesus made all kinds of people uncomftable. I will try do better on my next time out.

-- backward ((reel.new@this.com)), September 27, 1998.

Let's to on to another topic. I think at least until Merle's post, we had some civility. I have admitted that I understand there are many other positions and also been honest enough to admit that I once too held some of those positions.

Really, my whole point is that we can rely on God and trust him to help us through Y2K. My understanding of God is that he has ultimately chosen to respond towards us with unconditional love and to offer the real good news. I could spend another few hours replying to Merle's attacks but it simply would not accomplish anything good.

As you can see from his post, because I no longer view God exactly the same way he does, he calls me a heretic who is to be avoided at all costs. My crime is that I am utterly convinced that the love of God applies to all. On that point I am guilty as charged! I never claim to have all the answers and God still teaches me.

As a matter of fact, the vast majority of my friends are partialists and they would all be sickened if they knew anyone had called me a heretic.

My prayer is that the fundamentalists of any religion never gain power in Canada or the USA. Because sure as shootin', if they ever did, God help the man or woman that had a different opinion than them.

Of course we are all familiar with the inquisition. We all know about the Taliban in Afghanistan and the fundamentalists in the Sudan and Algeria who kill in the name of God. John Calvin, the founder of Calvinism complained about the excesses of Rome, but once he was in power he had a man put to death for disagreeing with his doctrine. Then there was the burning of the "witches" not so long ago in our history.....

And all this was done in the name of "we know God and you don't"ism.

One thing is certain. We will all need the grace of God to assist us with the difficult times that we will undoubtedly face with Y2K. I know one thing as much as I have ever known anything in my life: Whatever religious stripe you wear or don't wear, God will be there to help you through the hard times. You're all his children.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 27, 1998.

Craig, for the sake of others on this forum, I too will not continue posting on this thread, as long as others don't post what I feel to be unscriptural statements applying to the Bible. If they do, I shall be at liberty to refute them.

For example, your last post leaves many believing that they are all the children of God, which is not true. Jesus said: "Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my Word. Ye are of YOUR FATHER THE DEVIL, and the lusts of your father ye will do..." (John 8:43-44).

Only through the new birth is a child of Satan transformed into a child of God, a new creation, a trophy of God's grace. Only then is God's Spirit imparted to him, giving him (or her) the ability to understand the things of God and resist evil. However, a man doesn't just live a lifetime of sin and unbridled lusts, only to die and await some supposed metamorphous as you propose. "... it is appointed unto men once to die, and after this the judgment" (Heb. 9:27).

Whatever ones hopes for the destiny of his soul, they must be signed and sealed by the Holy Spirit in this lifetime in order to be delivered in eternity. "Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap (Gal. 6:7).

Now Craig, why not accept my suggestion and repost your comments on the Christian forum and see what happens? There, you will find scholars who understand the Bible, and who also understand how appealing Universalism can be to a world bent on satisfying the lusts of the flesh and refusing to have Christ rule in their lives.

-- Merle (merle.b@usa.net), September 28, 1998.


I tell you the truth, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom. Matthew 16:28

Those words were spoken by Jesus, now, unless some of those who were present at that time are in hiding after living for some 2000 years, or, the Bible is wrong, or, Jesus was a liar, or, the entire Bible cannot be taken literally word for word. Which is it?

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), September 28, 1998.

Deedah... if your question was posed in order to show this forum that the Bible cannot be taken literally, and therefore is (or could be) unreliable, or that Merle doesn't know what he's talking about, then I'm not wasting time answering you.

However, if you (who claim NOT to be a Christian) have a sincere interest in the salvation of your soul, I'll be only to happy to share my understanding of what the Bible teaches about your need to be born again.

-- Merle (merle.b@usa.net), September 28, 1998.

I think I see a bit too much faith being put into "biblical scholars" by people such as Merle here. Which do you have more faith in Merle, God, or the "scholars" that you claim will eat Craig alive.

All of this just reaffirms my belief that Jesus WAS about telling us how to live in the here and now--a belief that was challenged by many of you Christians here.

I have never stated my religious background here and I won't, for now at least. But I will say this: I believe Jesus' message was about love, compassion, and forgiveness; and not about 19th-century-style bible-thumping, damnation threatening, "elect" elitism.

Now, there's a tie-in to Y2K! You've gotta join the 20th century before you can move on to the 21st!

-- Buddy Y. (buddy@bellatlantic.net), September 28, 1998.


You summed up beautifully in a few sentences what I sometimes ramble on for paragraphs to say. Jesus did come to being love, compassion and forgiveness.

His approach was to first love us so we could love others also. Certainly God took a chance by giving us his love and salvation freely. There are always some that will abuse it. But it means so much more when someone lives a kind and loving life just because in their heart they are grateful to God and not because they are afraid of him.

Picture this: A husband says to his wife, darling I do love you so. I want you to know that I would die for you and you are the center of my universe. However, I also want to warn you, that if you ever leave me or are unfaithful to me, I will torture you unmercifully for years and years without end.

Would we say that this husband had real love. Or would we call him a control freak psycho?

How is it that much of the world hold God to a far lower standard than is expected of mere imperfect humans?

How can anyone claim God who wrote the very description of love in 1st Corinthians 13, does not even hold Himself to the same standard.

It boggles the imagination.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 28, 1998.


Please, please, please point out where I claimed 'not to be a Christian'.

BTW, you did waste your time answering my post, you did not however, answer my question. Why is it that someone who is so perfectly able to tell others that they are wrong in their faith (you), are unable to answer this simple question? Was the Bible inaccurate (answer A), or was Jesus a liar? (answer B)

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), September 28, 1998.

Merle...You did a great job and are very knowledgeable of the Bible. I am sure that the Lord is pleased with you. I am not sure just where Craig is getting his information, however. I think that he is totally off in left field. Uncle Deedah...I have a question for you. Are you a born again Christian? Because in the Bible Jesus says unless you are born again, you shall not enter into Heaven. This should settle the remark about you not being a Christian. Sal

-- Sal (True@Believer.net), September 28, 1998.

Oh, Uncle Deedah....The Bible IS accurate and Jesus is NOT a liar! Sal

-- Sal (True@Believer.net), September 29, 1998.

Uncle D.,

Why don't I take a crack at answering your question. The answer is (C) the Bible is true, and so is Jesus.

Those who have read the Bible much at all know that there is a good deal of figurative speech in the narratives; Jesus especially used figures of speech and parables extensively. When His comment of Matthew 16:28 is understood in light of the very next event described, it all falls into place.

"And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart, And was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light. And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elijah talking with him. Then answered Peter, and said unto Jesus, Lord, it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah. While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him. And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their face, and were sore afraid." -- Matt. 17:1-6.

The Transfiguration was a foreshadowing representation in miniature of the future Second Coming of Christ, when He will come into His Kingdom. Elijah represented the saints who will be translated to immortality at that time, without seeing death (1 Thess. 4:16,17; 1 Cor. 15:51,52; 2 Kings 2:11). Moses represented those who have died in Christ, who will be resurrected then (1 Thess. 4:16,17; John 6:40-44, etc.). Moses' resurrection is described in Jude 9, where Michael the archangel is pictured contending with Satan over the body of Moses. Some have questioned if this really establishes the fact of Moses' resurrection; but why else would the angel of the resurrection be at a grave disputing over a body? 1 Thess. 4:16 says, after all, that the "voice of the archangel" will open the graves of the dead. Clearly Michael, the archangel, was at Moses' grave for the purpose of raising him to life, despite Satan's attempts to the contrary.

So we see that Matt. 16:28 was fulfilled in the figurative sense, less than a week after Jesus said it, when three of the disciples beheld the miracle of the Transfiguration.

-- John Howard (Greenville, NC) (pcdir@prodigy.net), September 29, 1998.


You foolish man, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless

James 2:20


You see that a person is justified by what he does and not by faith alone

James 2:24

And one in support of Craigs point of view, that all are saved, which seems to contradict you.

But I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself.

John 12:32

And finally, Sal, in your wisdom, perhaps you could point out where I claimed not to be a Christian?

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), September 29, 1998.

I never said that you said you were not a Christian...I think someone else did, Uncle Deedah. However, I noticed...you still did not answer the question "are you a born again Christian?" Seems to me, if you were, you would say so! Sal

-- Sal (True@Believer.net), September 29, 1998.

Well this is all such a relief, I can now live my life in any fashion I choose without the threat of any after-life ramifications. hmmm, I've always wanted to rob a bank.

Did I miss the point Craig, Deedah? or is this basically what you are suggesting?


p.s. I really shouldn't use sarcasm.

-- Vic (Light_servant@yahoo.com), September 29, 1998.


I shall not bicker extensively with you, I tire of this back and forth "He said, He said".

Where is the key to which passage is to be taken literally and which is to be taken in a "figurative sense"? It seems to me that anytime I argue a passage that flies in the face of what most people consider the 'common version of Christianity', out comes the "Oh that one is not to be taken literally" arguement. The ones they use to support their point of view is always, oddly enough, a 'literal' passage.

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), September 29, 1998.

Yes, Vic...I guess we can do whatever we want to then! NOT! Oh, Uncle Deedah...It says in John12:37 (just down from where you quoted) that even though Jesus did all the miraculous signs in their presence, they still would NOT believe in Him. I think you misunderstand what draw to him means. If you really do some studying, U.D. you will see that Craig is giving lots of wrong information and I wouldn't want to have to answer for that! Sal

-- Sal (True@Believer.net), September 29, 1998.

Read a quote today in a book called "A Return to Love" by Marianne Williamson, which gives this timely advice. "Forget the language - go and build a better world." I truly think that's the intention of all of us here, trying to educate each other and build a better world - that's about as close to my belief of what Jesus wants us to do as we can get! Isn't the First Commandment, according to Jesus Himself, to "love the Lord your God with all your heart and all your soul and all your mind" - and the second is this, "to love your neighbor as yourself." Jesus taught that, basically, ALL else followed from those two.

I must have lost my mind to have jumped into this one but I believe that GOD is all Love, and it is MAN who is judgemental and conditional in his love, and insecure, and bent on revenge. I think men have projected those things in himself onto God. If you disagree with me, or anyone else, then as a Christian I ask you to pray for me, not rub your hands in glee at what you believe is my inevitable and everlasting torment.

-- Melissa (financed@forbin.com), September 29, 1998.

Oh brother!

Some people just never get it.

I've made the point VERY CLEARLY that God only wants a response to his love if we make it out of love. If you want to live like the devil just because you can, then you simply don't have the love of God in you. The truth just reveals where your heart is today. If you want to live like a jerk and be saved "as by fire" with no rewards in the "restitution of all things" phase, then fine. That's not my cup of tea.

But I'm sick and tired of the fundamentalist know-it-all partialists that insist on blaspheming God. Do I have to post the 80 verses that point clearly to the eventual salvation by spoon feeding you or can you perhaps get off your butts and study for yourselves.

Let me tell you why most people will never step outside their comfort zone and really look at what the Hebrew and Greek mean and what the early church understood. How many of you have studied the purer versions of the Bible such as Rotherham's edition? No, you'd rather read the "modified" versions where the pagan concepts of eternal torment were introduced. And do you know why you like those versions? Because deep down inside, you like and relish the idea of God torturing those people you think are not as good as you are. You can't be honest with yourself and you have no guts. I swear, the moment you could honestly grasp in your heart and in your feelings what kind of creature it would take to condemn a man or woman to eternal agony, you would realize that you have attributed the characteristics of Satan to God himself.

No, you won't even hold God accountable to his own word where he describes what true love is in 1st Corinthians, Chapter 13.

You want to save Uncle Deedah........what a joke. You're drowning yourself and unless you receive the spirit of God, you'll only fall across the finish line by the grace of God.

Do you even know what you need to be saved from?????? It's not smoking or drinking or swearing or speeding or lusting or lying or stealing.........all that was covered at the cross. You need to be saved from your own self-righteousness!!

You so easily forget. Jesus never got angry at the woman at the well, even though she apparently enjoyed a rather active sex life......no, the only times he got angry was with the Pharisees, the self- righteous. My God, I've never seen such a batch of whitewashed sepulchres..............

Cut out your self-righteous crap and go and feed the hungry. Invite a homeless man into your home and comfort the widows........do something useful for heavens sake.

Don't sicken me with your boasts about how well you know scripture. You read but you do not understand and will not understand until your hearts are softened.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 29, 1998.


-- Mike (gartner@execpc.com), September 29, 1998.

Mike, I like your post. ZZZZZZ I know you are all very serious and maybe this shouldn't strike me as funny, but Craig reminds me of a few preachers I know. They will preach for a long time and then will say, "In closing..." Five minutes later they say, "And in closing..." and another five minutes, "This time I'm really closing." Many posts ago he wasn't going to post any more. :-) Sorry Craig- it just struck me as funny when I saw Mike's post. I've seen a few heads nod in church before, too.

-- Gayla Dunbar (privacy@please.com), September 29, 1998.

Craig, you lost all creditability with that last name-calling post.

Had you posted once and let it go, some would have read and been impressed, others would have ignored you. But, in your desire to convince others that only your way is right you demonstrated the same faults you condemn other of. And, each response became more and more hysterical.

Cool down, man.

-- rocky (rknolls@hotmail.com), September 29, 1998.

Craig,you said "fall across the finish line":WHAT finish line? If we all end up in heaven, there isn't any race. Also, your last post was filled with animosity,no? Plus, you never gave any valid answers tho the Bible verses that were presented to you. If you need to have your intelligia soothed in order to accept a concept of God, then ask yourself,"If God knew about Lucifer, why did He make him?" "If he knew man would fall, why did he make us free will?" Or better yet, "Who made God?" Most importantly,Revelation 16:10-11,"Men gnawed their tongues in agony and cursed God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, but they refused to repent of what they had done." Now unless you can PROVE that that scripture was stuck in there by mere man and not divinely inspired, your arguement that all men will acknowledge God after a period of wrath are ridiculous!It is an insult to all that Christ did.

-- madeline (runner@bcpl.net), September 29, 1998.

To Vic: No, none of this means that you can do whatever you want without risk. If there is love in your heart then you will not rob a bank.

To all: Does professing that you are "born again" entitle you to create a fortress to protect yourself in a disaster such as Y2K might be? Are you going to help others during the coming crisis, or are you going to sit behind your castle walls and read scripture?

One more thing: It would be helpful when quoting scripture if you would cite your sources. What version of the Bible are you quoting?

-- Buddy Y. (buddy@bellatlantic.net), September 29, 1998.


It's tough to win sometimes. Some people don't want any more discussion on the matter yet others still want questions answered.

Any way, I'll answer your last questions and those that don't want to read it don't have to......nice thing about a free country.

You wrote: Craig,you said "fall across the finish line":WHAT finish line? If we all end up in heaven, there isn't any race.

My response: That's like saying the 100 metre final at the Olympic games wasn't a race. They all crossed the finish line and it certainly was a race. It's just some came in ahead of the others.

You wrote: Also, your last post was filled with animosity,no?

My response: No. Not animosity, as a matter of fact if you or anyone else in this group were here today I'd gladly take you for a coffe, or if you were in need, help where I could. Frustration with the blindness, yes. Jesus himself was very vocal in the temple and Paul was quite figurative in his discourses at times.

You wrote: Plus, you never gave any valid answers tho the Bible verses that were presented to you.

My response: I have answered many verses and also given links to many resources that you can study yourself. Playing Bible verse ping pong is waste of time. I have given much scripture that clearly shows the final glorious picture that God has painted. Would you like more?

You wrote: If you need to have your intelligia soothed in order to accept a concept of God, then ask yourself,"If God knew about Lucifer, why did He make him?" "If he knew man would fall, why did he make us free will?"

My response: There's no such thing as an intelligia. It's a funny thing though, years ago when I used to argue from a partialist viewpoint you would have loudly cheered my "intelligia" or intelligence. Now all of a sudden, I'm wrong for having or using it?

You wrote: Or better yet, "Who made God?"

My response: In the beginning was the Word......God always is, was and will be.

You wrote: Most importantly,Revelation 16:10-11,"Men gnawed their tongues in agony and cursed God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, but they refused to repent of what they had done." Now unless you can PROVE that that scripture was stuck in there by mere man and not divinely inspired, your arguement that all men will acknowledge God after a period of wrath are ridiculous!It is an insult to all that Christ did.

My response: Never judge a fine wine before its time! That scripture was definitely divinely inspired. They refused to repent at that time, but eventually they will be a part of the "every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father". What part of every don't you understand.

You want scripture. You got it. Anyway, I think both sides of this discussion have been presented fully. Let's end it with the Word of God.

1Tim 2:4-God will have all to be saved-Can His will be thwarted? 1Tim 2:4-God desires all to come to the knowledge of truth-Will His desire come to pass? 1Tim 2:6-Salvation of all is testified in due time-Are we judging God before due time? Jn 12:47-Jesus came to save all-Will He succeed? Eph 1:11-God works all after the counsel of His will-Can your will overcome His? Jn 4:42-Jesus is Savior of the world-Can He be Savior of all without saving all? 1Jn 4:14-Jesus is Savior of the world-Why don't we believe it? Jn 12:32-Jesus will draw all mankind unto Himself-To roast or to love? Col 1:16-By Him all were created-Will He lose a part of His creation? Rm 5:15-21-In Adam all condemned, in Christ all live-The same all? 1Cor 15:22-In Adam all die, in Christ all live-Again, the same all? Eph 1:10-All come into Him at the fulness of times-Are you getting tired of seeing the word, all? Phl 2:9-11-Every tongue shall confess Jesus is Lord-Will the Holy Spirit be given to everyone? 1Cor 12:3-Cannot confess except by Holy Spirit-See what I mean? Rm 11:26-All Israel will be saved-But most Jews don't believe yet! Acts 3:20,21-Restitution of all-How plain can you get? Luke 2:10-Jesus will be joy to all people-Is there joy is "hell"? Heb 8:11,12- All will know God-How long, O Lord? Eph 2:7-His grace shown in the ages to come-Have we judged Him before the time? Titus 2:11-Grace has appeared to all-Experientially or prophetically? Rm 8:19-21-Creation set at liberty-How much of creation? Col 1:20-All reconciled unto God-There's that word "all" again. 1Cor 4:5-All will have praise of God-What for? Jms 5:11-End of the Lord is full of mercy-Is "hell" mercy? Rev 15:4-All nations worship when God's judgments are seen-Could His judgment be mercy? Rm 11:32-All subject to unbelief, mercy on all-All? Rm 11:36-All out of, through, and into Him-ALL into Him? Eph 4:10-Jesus will fill all things-Including "hell?" Rev 5:13-All creation seen praising God-Including Satan? 1Cor 15:28-God will be all in all-What does that mean, preacher? Rev 21:4,5-No more tears, all things made new-ALL made new? Jn 5:25-All dead who hear will live-How many will hear? Jn 5:28-All in the grave will hear & come forth-How will the "righteous" judge, judge? 1 Cor 3:15-All saved, so as by fire-How can fire save you? Mk 9:49-Everyone shall be salted with fire-Including you? Rm 11:15-Reconciliation of the world-Will fire save the world instead of destroy it? 2Cor 5:15-Jesus died for all-Did He died in vain? Jn 8:29-Jesus always does what pleases His Father-What pleases the Father? (1Tim 2:4) Heb 1:2-Jesus is Heir of all things-Does "things" include people? Jn 17:2-Jesus gives eternal life to all that His Father gave Him-How many did the Father give Him? Jn 3:35-The Father gave Him all things-(Repeated for emphasis) Study the word "things" in the Greek. 1 Tim 4:9-11-Jesus is Savior of all!-Can't seem to get away from that word "all." Heb. 7:25-Jesus is able to save to the uttermost-How far is "uttermost?" 1Cor 15:26-Last enemy, death, will be destroyed-Including "lake of fire" which is "second death?" Is 46:10-God will do all His pleasure-Does Old Testament agree with the New? Gen 18:18-All families of the earth will be blessed-Here comes that word "all" again. Dan 4:35-God's will done in heaven and earth-What can defeat His will? Ps 66:3,4-Enemies will submit to God-Can any stay rebellious in "hell?" Ps 90:3-God turns man to destruction, then says return-How can one return from "destruction?" Is 25:7-Will destroy veil spread over all nations-All nations? Deut 32:39-He kills and makes alive-Kills to bring life? Ps 33:15-God fashions all hearts-"All" hearts, including men like "Hitler?" Prv 16:9-Man devises, God directs his steps-What about "free will?" Prv 19:21-Man devises, but God's counsel stands-So much for "free will." La 3:31,32-God will not cast off forever-Why does He cast off in the first place? (1 Cor 11) Is 2:2-All nations shall flow to the Lord's house-ALL nations? Ps 86:9-All nations will worship Him-ALL nations! Is 45:23-All descendants of Israel justified-Including the wicked ones? Ps 138:4-All kings will praise God-Are you catching on? Ps 65:2-4-All flesh will come to God-That sounds wondrous. Ps 72:18-God only does wondrous things-I wish we would believe that. Is 19:14,15-Egypt & Assyria will be restored-Really? Ezk 16:55-Sodom will be restored to former estate-Sounds impossible. Jer 32:17-Nothing is too difficult for Him-Nothing? No, nothing! Ps 22:27-All ends of the earth will turn to Him-For what purpose? Ps 22:27-All families will worship before Him-Praise His name! Ps 145:9-He is good to all-Including your worst enemies. Ps 145:9-His mercies are over all his works-Let's start believing that. Ps 145:14-He raises all who fall-Who hasn't fallen in sin? Ps 145:10-All His works will praise Him-For "eternal torment?" Is 25:6-Lord makes a feast for all people-And you are invited. Jer 32:35-Never entered His mind to torture his children with fire. This came from the carnal mind. Jn 6:44-No one can come to Him unless He draws them. You can't "choose" to follow Him. Jn 12:32-I will draw all mankind unto Myself-Amen!!! Ps 135:6-God does what pleases Him-If it pleases Him to save all that He might be in all, are you upset?

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 29, 1998.

Uncle D., bicker? No sir, not at all. If you ask a question, I'll certainly try to answer it, that's all. "Be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you." -- 1 Peter 3:15

You asked, what is the key to understanding which parts of the Bible to take literally and which to understand in a figurative sense. That key is the Holy Spirit, and praying to God for understanding.

"The Lord giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding." -- Prov. 2:6

"The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in My name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you." -- John 14:26

"Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will shew you things to come." -- John 16:13

"The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." -- 1 Cor. 2:14

"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him." -- James 1:5

-- John Howard (Greenville, NC) (pcdir@prodigy.net), September 29, 1998.


Poor choice of words on my part, twas a late hour, after a full and laborious day. My humble apology to you sir. I did not want to bicker because, after reading some of your other posts, I see that you are not a one trick pony, like unnamed others who only post to theology threads.

BTW, Thank you for your quotes, I now know why I am right in my feelings toward the 'holier than thou, get with the program' crowd. ;)

To Sal, I do not call myself a 'Christian' because of the evil done in his name. That does not mean that I do not try to live as I believe he wished me to (despite the 'bickering). Jesus did not like hypocrites, and neither do I (despite occasional hypocrisy on my part, I am , after all an imperfect human, like you)

One other thought,

"Jesus' last words on the cross, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" hardly seem like the words of a man who planned it that way."

Donald Morgan

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), September 29, 1998.

aw shoot Unca D,

no apology necessary...just wanting to make sure you didn't think I was bickering!

-- John Howard (Greenville, NC) (pcdir@prodigy.net), September 30, 1998.

Nice posts Craig! One of the few religious oriented posts that didnt induce me to go into attack mode. How fitting it is that you should bring up the "born again institutionalized" to this thread! I wouldn't waste my time trying to enlighten the masses Craig. Unfortunately, most folks seem to like the ass kicking vengeful creator more than a loving one. One little story before I sign-off: Was at a Y2K meeting at a local church when the question of "Would you feed a stranger that showed up at your door step?" was brought up. A devout `Born Again' answered that he wouldn't because the stranger was a non-believer. Last time I'm ever going to a church held meeting!

-- Connie L. (Cofkee@aol.com), September 30, 1998.

There you have it folks, one "born-again Christian" who is off the path, and we can deduce that all born-again Christians have the same attitude and that we should never go to a church held meeting again.


-- Vic (Light_servant@yahoo.com), September 30, 1998.

Could it be that you were just looking for an excuse to not go to another church held meeting. That is pretty sad when you judge all born again Christians by that ONE who said that! Give me a break! Jesus says you must be Born Again... we are not the ones who say that. He said it therefore I believe it.You can knock being "born again" all that you want. But Jesus is God and I will have to answer to Him not you. Craig is deceiving you all, beware!!!!! Sal

-- Sal (True@Believer.net), September 30, 1998.

I know what you are talking about Connie. There's very often this us and them mentality in fundamentalist churches. I should know, I've been to enough services where I've experienced similiar things. I believe it's easy to know where it comes from though: if the person believes that the "non-believer" will be tortured endlessly by God, then what is wrong with treating them like dirt. It's the same attitude that the Inquisitors had when they tortured their helpless victims: what's wrong with sticking a red hot poker up someones butt if they're going to get much worse from your father anyway.

To Vic, Connie never mentioned that she thought that all born again Christians had the same attitude. She obviously feels that there is enough mean-spirited and strange people in the churches that warrant not going to any more meetings and I rather doubt she would hold that opinion if she hadn't seen enough evidence of it.

And last, but not least, Sal.

Sal, Sal, Sal...........you never fail to amaze me. How you can spew out your unabashed criticism of me when you refuse to deal with the facts is quite sad. Which of the 75 verses I quoted above do you object to? Is God not able to have what he wills? Do you not understand that God pre-destinates where you or I will spend eternity and he pre-destinates that we all spend it in heaven? Do you not understand that God is not limited by our sense of time in order to accomplish his goal? Can you not fathom that God, who knew the end from the very beginning, would not start something that He cannot finish? Do you think God is evil enough to create anyone who he knew that would not "make it"?

You cannot possibly ever truly feel the love of God because your sub- conscious must be screaming at you when you try to love someone you believe will incessantly torture your mother or brother or friend or wife, or even you.

You ramble on about the phrase "born again" when it is in fact only used once or twice to describe the spiritual birth. The fact that most of the scripture uses other words, phrases or descriptions does not faze you from your obsession with those two words. The fact that you can not choose to be "born again" and the only time anybody actually receives spiritual life is when GOD chooses to impart it to them escapes you also. The fact that GOD will impart spiritual life to ALL in His good time somehow evades your mind too.

May I recommend a study in the difference between law and grace? It may help you. Perhaps one of these days when you have truly been "born again" or "received new life" or "been set free" you will be able to preach the Gospel.

BTW, the word gospel, means GOOD NEWS. 95% of all people floundering in a pot of sulfuric flames is not good news. It is a hideous distortion of the truth and a blasphemous statement about the one and only true God.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), September 30, 1998.


If one absolutely must without a doubt be born again to go to heaven, what happened to the millions of people who lived before he was born? Did they all go to hell?

Eskimo: If I did not know about God and sin, would I go to hell? Priest: No, not if you did not know. Eskimo: Then why did you tell me?

Annie Dillard

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), September 30, 1998.

I've been staying out of this one for two reasons. One, my brothers and sisters have been doing nicely without me, and two, I feel that I should try to confine my posts to sharing God's simple plan of salvation, rather than debating doctrine publicly with unbelievers.

There are at least three distinct classes of people hopelessly trying to reason together on this forum, so it might be fitting to try and make a distinction between them so that we can begin to see why there is such disharmony. This is what I see:

a) TRUE BELIEVERS. These, by virtue of the new birth, and without any meritorious effort, possess the Spirit of Christ, which gives them an overwhelming desire to share their faith in Christ, albeit sometimes ill advised. These may be young Christians who have only recently been converted, and know little about the Bible or the deep things of the Spirit, or older ones who have not had access to sound teaching. In this group there are also mature believers who have spent years learning to live in the presence of Christ, hungering and thirsting after righteousness, and all the while knowing that they are nothing but very fragile common clay pots which contain the very life of Christ. All TRUE believers have submitted to the Lordship of Christ, and yet, they have the same temptations, the same weak flesh, and are prone to sin just like everyone else. These differ from others in that they no longer practice sinning, and are no longer in bondage to sin. They have the power to overcome temptation, and when they do sin they will repent because they know they have grieved the Holy Spirit. These are the ones who are singled out and called "self righteous" by scoffers and unbelievers because they dare to stand upon the Word of God as the absolute and final authority in everything.

b) PSEUDO CHRISTIANS. These form the largest segment of Christendom. They feign holiness or attempt to merit something from God through human effort, e.g. church membership, penance, good works. Included are members of every religious system known to man, because religion ALWAYS demands that men do something to appease or assuage the wrath of God. These despise true believers because they are not children of God, and therefore they must do the will of their father the devil.

c) UNBELIEVERS. These make no pretense of being Christians or even of being religious. They hate true believers as well as psuedo Christians because they don't (or can't) distinguish between them. To them, all who claim to be Christians are ignorant, intolerant, uncharitable, or else deceived by preachers who are all greedy hypocrites. Their hatred often consumes them, and they use every means to deride, ridicule, and abuse those they perceive to be 'religious'.

Now, let someone mention that the Bible says: "Ye must be born again" and the attack starts. Deedah and Buddy, struggling hard to maintain some kind of respectability without declaring themselves 'religious' make some cutting remarks; Connie, an avowed unbeliever, scoffs with gutter language and dares to blaspheme the Word of God; then here comes Craig who says: "Hold on just a minute. No one's going to hell, God's too loving to punish anyone for eternity",(just like Buddy says) then proceeds to flood us with blankets of scripture, implying that it was all contextual with Universalism. The unbelievers love Craig for his removal of the ultimate penalty for sin, making it possible for everyone to breath a bit easier. He's balmed the troubled consciences knowing that all us miserable worms are gonna go into our comfy cocoon at death, and emerge as gorgeous butterflies, to ever to flit about heaven which is our eternal reward for living to gratify the flesh and for dishonoring the One who made it all possible.

Believing the Universalist lie won't send anyone to Hell who is among the chosen or the elect of God, but it sure calls into question the spiritual standing of anyone who has fallen prey to it. Therefore I think it fitting that Craig take Merl's challenge, and repost all his proof texts on paster Chris's forum (or Norths), and open a thread to those who have the guns to shoot down his balloon and perhaps teach him the truth. Besides, why waste all that material on participants on this forum who are either disinterested or have spiritual defenses against error.

-- Arcy (arcy.w@usa.net), September 30, 1998.

I really was NOT going to get back into this discussion, but I did some research as Craig suggested and here is what I found. In a much earlier post I quoted a scripture verse from (KJV) Matthew 25:46: "And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal." I went back to the original Greek (which the New Testament was written in) to see what was actually being said. The word everlasting is taken from the Greek word "aionios" - definition: eternal, for ever, everlasting. The word punishment is taken from the Greek word "kolasis" - definiton: punishment, torment. The word "aionios" is taken from the root word "aion" which is the same word used to describe God, Himself, in (KJV) I Timothy 1:17, "Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen." Seems to me that everlasting punishment means exactly that.

-- Gayla Dunbar (privacy@please.com), September 30, 1998.


You forgot category D) Esteem-less hypocrites who relish the thought of others burning in hell, ala Swaggart, Baker, etc. I figure Jim Baker knew the Good Book pretty well, but still, he had no problem with swindling widows out of their pensions.

I do not think it is necessary to believe that the same God who has given us our senses, reason, and intelligence wished us to abandon their use, giving us by some other means the information that we could gain through them

Galileo (the heretic who dared suggest that the sun did not revolve around the earth)

-- Uncle Deedah (oncebitten@twiceshy.com), September 30, 1998.

Wanted to apologize for my last 2 sarcastic posts. :(

Nice post Arcy.


-- Vic (Light_servant@yahoo.com), October 01, 1998.


If you are serious about studying those words I will send you a link to some detailed and brilliant scholarship on them. Please email me privately if your mind is open and I will send them. With respect, your understanding after a short stint in a Bible dictionary or concordance has not given you the correct picture at all.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), October 01, 1998.

To Arcy,

Oh goody, another pharisee! Jesus had his fun with you guys too.

Arcy, the vast majority of people have the same "feelings of conviction" as what you seem to claim only happen to fundamentalist type born again Christians. It's called guilt and good common sense. If I lose my temper with someone and I feel bad about it, I am experiencing the same thing as what you claim only Arcy approved Christians can feel. This incredibly mixed up world view you have that only "born again" Christians live good holy lives while the rest are living ungodly lives is pure b.s. (I wanted to say shit but legalists like Arcy would be totally offended. They say crap so they can express their feelings while still being right with God.)

I have spent many many years in both Baptist and Pentecostal churches with the most "godly" people you could imagine. On the whole, there were good people and bad people, nice guys and jerks, rich and poor, just like the general population. Perhaps they had more self control in areas like swearing and lying and drinking, but they were far worse than non churchgoers in areas such as jealousy, lust, gossip, anger and bitterness.

Probably the best sermon I ever heard was at an Easter Sunday meeting where most of our local churches got together for a service. The pastor that spoke gave part of a message that he had heard. It went something like this......

Today, there are more than 200 million children in third world countries that will not have enough to eat. Today, 1500 children will die because of starvation and malnourishment. Why do we allow this shit to happen.....(Extremely awkward gossiping silence for a few seconds).....

Then he said: But you know what really angers me? 90% of you people were far more concerned about my saying shit than you were about the fact that 1500 children are going to die today......

That my friend, is called legalism........and that is what is eating you up inside.

You wrote: They have the power to overcome temptation, and when they do sin they will repent because they know they have grieved the Holy Spirit.

You my friend not only have missed the boat, you're not even at the dock. You're approximately in Kansas City. Everyone except perhaps Charles Manson and Hanson has a conscience. God grants EVERYONE who wishes to overcome and area of imperfection in their lives the grace to do so. You're obsessed with this navel-gazing concept of confessing your sins. One last time for the record. The Apostle Paul, who wrote most of the new testament NEVER EVER commands or even suggests we confess our sins. (He also never mentions HELL even once, a slight oversight if you were to believe this fundie nonsense). The ONLY scripture in the ENTIRE new testament that mentions this concept is in 1st John where it says "If we confess our sins he is faithful to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from ALL unrighteousness". That one lone scripture is CLEARLY summarizing the once in a lifetime, or once in an age experience when God has appointed for us to have faith to believe in his son, Jesus Christ. It is NOT a commandment to rub our noses in every mistake or act of sin that we ever commit. As a matter of fact, this CONSTANT asking for forgiveness of sin is an INSULT to the living God.

If you knew scripture AT ALL, you would understand that the Book of Hebrews teaches that you CANNOT be forgiven twice. In order for you to be forgiven twice, Christ would have to go to the cross again. Your constantly asking forgiveness is asking Christ to be crucified afresh, which he will NOT do.

So you have not yet come to the appreciation of the magnificense of what Christ accomplished and cannot yet be filled with joy from his love. Please don't tell me that you can with what you believe.

For if you are filled with joy and yet you believe that the vast majority of mankind will be tortured mercilessly for time without end, then you are a selfish wicked man indeed. May God open your heart to the peace and love that only come with truth.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), October 01, 1998.

I too, have kept quiet and tried to read and take all of this in. Seems to me when I wrote one of my posts, MANY, MANY posts up, all I intended to do was test the water to see if I could be open and honest to share about how my faith is getting me through the start and hopefully the ongoing y2k problems. I never thought it would turn into a religious, Bible debate. Craig has really gone overboard for this forum...should be on another one, even if they might chew him alive. (sorry, but it is the truth) Arcy, you did an excellent job with your explanations in your post. Very well done! Gayla, of course I knew you would come through with your research and you, too, did a great job. I know that the Lord is proud of you guys. Vic , He is also pleased with your humbleness and apology. :) Craig, I didn't bother to read your last post. You announced your "last post" about 20 posts ago, and I wish you would have stuck to that. I am sure a lot of others feel the same way!!! You can try to quote tons and tons of Scripture and it isn't going to change my mind or probably the mind of others. I know in my heart what I believe and the Lord showed me that 14 years ago, so don't even try. Take it to another forum. Anyway, it doesn't really matter...this Van Impe post is right at the top now and will be gone soon. Will probably go down as the longest post in history! For those that want to continue listening to you, Craig, then they can maybe find you on another forum somewhere. The rest of us are probably ready for a fresh start of another one. I know I am. I sure wish I knew the Bible like you, Gayla, Arcy and Vic. John Howard is also very knowledgeable. Uncle Deedah, forget what others may have possibly done to you or if they were bad examples of Christians. Just look to Him ..He is the one who loves you. A true Christian is like the word implies...a follower (or fan) of Christ. :) God Bless Us All, Blondie

-- Blondie Marie (Blondie@future.net), October 01, 1998.

recognizing there is a WHOLE BUNCH of stuff between here and what I am answering,...... well...... In reference to feeding a stranger who shows up at the door (and I got my asbestos stuff on) I am inclined to say I would not for the following reasons:

1) Under older customs, if you provided water and bread to a person who came to your domicile, you became responsible for their life.

2) My wife and i can only collect and store a finite amount of food

3) Hobo's used to have a name for the houses they were able to get food from and it wasn't really pretty.

4) I have spent the last month or 2 (and will spend the next "X" months) trying to raise the Y2K Consciousness of all and sundry around me. this is what my Christianity and my discussions with the Spirit have lead me to. If I have mis-understood my leadings, I will have to answer to my Lord on that fateful day.

In reference to #2 See Lucifer's Hammer by J. Pournelle (-3 sp) and refer to the senator's ranch and the requirements for entry thereto, and note the loss of one of the more needed skill-sets because of the cost of keeping him alive (1 sheep per month aprox).

IF this goes to the wall, we are going to find out that the "Milk of Human Kindness" is NOT a survival-enhancing trait, while the urge to protect your family IS.


-- Chuck a Night Driver (rienzoo@en.com), October 01, 1998.

Oh goodness! I just realized that I have done the same thing that the Arcy, et al crowd has been doing. That is, attempting to sway people to my point of view. On this subject, at least, it appears to be fruitless.

If your beliefs help you get through the coming crisis, then God bless you. I just hope nobody's beliefs cause them to go trampling all over other people. We're going to need cooperation and the good will of all to get through this.

-- Buddy Y. (buddy@bellatlantic.net), October 01, 1998.

If you would like to read the "ultimate heresy", then pick up a copy of A Course in Miracles. (It was Melissa, I believe, who mentioned A Return to Love by Marianne Williamson, which book was based upon the author's understanding of ACIM.) This book made a change in my life-- I, whose first experience of "christianity" was that of Southern Baptist preachers scaring the hell out of their flocks with descriptions of eternal torment. When I reached my teen years I rejected all religion , based upon that earlier experience. For a time I thought of myself as an aetheist but later I decided that I really didn't know for sure, so I settled for "agnostic".

Late one night in 1968 on a lonely freeway in Northern California, I had an trancendental experience. I was hitchhiking back from a weekend at my girlfriend's house, and I was tired, broke, lonely and heartsick. I felt that nobody cared and that the world was a terrible place to be in. I was sitting on my duffel bag and staring off into the distance, wondering if I'd be sitting there until morning before I could get a ride, when a change began to occur. This feeling of indescribable peace came over me, like nothing I've felt before or since. Everything was in its place, everything made sense and was proceeding as it should. Perfect peace, perfect love. (lest you think that this episode was somehow related to LSD or the effects of some other drug, I wish to add that up until that time I had never taken anything stronger than a sleeping pill)

After a few minutes - I suppose - the feeling went away in the same way that it had come upon me, slowly faded. I was left wondering what in the world had happened to me. I picked up my bag and started walking. Soon a couple on their way to a party picked me up; they asked if I would like to go with them. I had a great time with a housefull of friendly people and someone gave me a place to spend the night. It helped to restore my faith in people.

I never understood my experience on the road that night until much later when I read A Course in Miracles. It seemed to me then that it had been a gift from God, a demonstration of His Love.

What I came to believe

- "In The Beginning", only God existed. Matter did not exist, nor did time or space. Spirit was the only reality.

- God created with a Thought a "Reflection" of Himself (think of angels) and imbued it with "free agency". This reflection, this spirit, imagined (incorrectly) that it (think of Lucifer) was separate from God. The instant of this error created what scientists refer to as the "Big Bang" ("Light Bringer"), where all the stuff of physical existence began to spread out through the "Space" which then came into being. Atomic processes came into being, bringing about "Time".

- God did not create the earth et al; the spirit which incorrectly believed itself separate from God did, as support for its insane wish to show itself as seperate from God. Physical life resulted from this spirits desire to take on form; however, only the Creations of God are eternal, anything else is transitory and falls back into the dust from which it came (witness mans age-old desire for immortality).

- Mankind is the pinnicle of this spirits desire for self-awareness, becoming its own "reflection" of itself. (and it is ironic, because having seen its own face, it hates itself; because it was created not out of love, but out of fear of Gods Authority.

- We have conflict within us, between Spirit, Mind, and ego. Spirit is of God, and therefore is eternal. Mind is the conciousness which we have. Ego is the set of beliefs which we have taken from "the world"; it is based upon fear and is in direct conflict with the Will of God (think "Satan", "the devil inside").

- "Hell" is here and now, hell is the physical world. That extreme suffering has not been experienced by all personally in this lifetime is simply a matter of limited perspective. Humans learn very slowly, forget quickly and are expert at deceiving themselves. Collectively we pass through many physical existences and in most cases accumulate wisdom with geological slowness (think of "old souls").

- Jesus was concieved in the ordinary way. He was thought of in his town and in his time as being illegitimate, as "the son of Mary" (not as "the son of Joseph", which would be proper). The difference was, he came to recognize and completely accept the Will of God and was thus able to become an instument of It, able to perform miracles. Even He had a instant of doubt ("my God, why hast thou forsaken me?") but was forgiven of His error. Through Gods Will His resurrection demonstrated that Faith overcomes even death. Jesus is now with God, and is the agent of the worlds Atonement (At-One-ment), when all will eventually accept Gods Will.

- God is the source of all Love and desires that all come to him, but He does not compel. Coming to God means that you must give up all desire for the things of the world, for that is what keeps you here.


I apologize for this ramble it is a very long post to a very long thread. It has little to do with Y2K, except for the fact that discussion of "the end of the world" leads to personal examination of our greatest fear - that of losing ourselves.

May we remember that Love overcomes fear.

-- Max Dixon (Ogden, Utah, USA) (Max.Dixon@gte.net), October 01, 1998.

Sorry about the missing end tag...

-- Max Dixon (Max.Dixon@gte.net), October 01, 1998.

Boy, I'm getting an Excedrin headache. But nonetheless...have to speak up on one subject that has run all through this thread.

Craig, God does not/will not punish people for all eternity. However, most humans who have ever lived will be destroyed by hellfire soon after the Second Resurrection.

Sin is the cancer of the universe. There is no way that God would want to prolong its existence for all of eternity. The Bible says, "What do ye imagine against the Lord? He will make an utter end: affliction shall not rise up the second time." -- Nahum 1:9.

God is a loving God, sure enough. But that does not mean He will put up with just anything. "The wages of sin is death." -- Romans 6:23. Plain and simple. Sin cannot long exist in this universe...and won't for much longer. Sin is separation from God; a monkey wrench in the machinery. It did not exist before Lucifer's rebellion, and will not exist after God makes a final end of it.

Sin is a cancer. If you had cancer in the tip of your thumb that could only be prevented from spreading by cutting off the tip of that thumb, what would you do? I'd cut off that thumb tip, right quick. Would that mean that all of a sudden I stopped loving that thumb tip? Not at all. But to keep that cancer from infecting and endangering the rest of my body, I'd have to do away with that thumb. That's how it is with God, and sin, and the rest of the universe beyond our sin-infested planet. Sin has to go, and Jesus is our only way off this condemned piece of property.

No one is presently suffering in hell-fire. "The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished." -- 2 Peter 2:9. The unjust are plainly stated to be reserved "unto the day of judgment" to be punished. That day of judgment is yet future, by any measure.

As far as eternal torment: that belief has arisen from faulty translations of certain Greek and Hebrew terms. I'll deal with just one of them here, lest this post go on endlessly. The term "for ever." The Greek word for this English term is "aion", which literally means "an indefinite period of time". Some examples of "aion"'s usage in the Bible where it is translated "for ever":

Jonah 2:6 -- "for ever" meant 3 days and 3 nights Deut. 23:3 says ten generations last "for ever"

In fact, the phrase "for ever" is used 56 times in the Bible in describing events that are in the past and done with.

The ultimate fate of the wicked is described in the Bible like this:

"Fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them." -- Rev. 20:9

"Therefore as the fire devoureth the stubble, and the flame consumeth the chaff, so their root shall be as rottenness, and their blossom shall go up as dust: because they have cast away the law of the Lord of hosts, and despised the word of the Holy One of Israel." -- Isaiah 5:24

"For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the Lord of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch. But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall. And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the Lord of hosts." -- Malachi 4:1-3

Condemned souls don't live forever in torment; Ezekiel 18:20 says, "the soul that sinneth, it shall die." Plain and simple.

-- John Howard (Greenville, NC) (pcdir@prodigy.net), October 01, 1998.

Blasphemy! Blasphemy! This is all blasphemy! None of you understand the real message! 40 days and 40 nights of world-wide chaos are your penance!

-- I am who am (yahweh@heaven.hel), October 02, 1998.

I have printed this thread out twice and read it with great interest. My only "argument" against the hellfire and brimstone line of thought goes something like this:

I can not see a just God damning a devout Orthodox Jew, who I understand would see Jesus as a prophet and not the Son of God; a devout Muslim (believing in Allah), a devout American Indian (believing in the Creator), and a devout Buddhist (Mohommad) to hell because they did not believe that Christ died on the cross for their sins.

I have grappled with the theory of a just God ruling through fear. I can say that my faith has, and continues to, waivered since I became a Methodist at 16. It never made sense to me that a God so capable of wonderous things would punish so harshly for a lack of belief. I have never been able to MAKE myself believe in some things. Now that I look at things differently and take the Bible as a wonderful piece of literature inspired by God, not written by God, I feel as if I am a better human. (Bible example: would a loving God give us rules on how to treat slaves? No, a slave owner trying to establish what seemed like fair guidelines for slavery would.)

Example: I have had bosses that manage through fear and I have had bosses that manage through "getting things done right" for the good of the organization. I know I was a much more productive and happier worker who slept much better at night and looked forward to going to work in the morning with the latter type of boss. I think that this is a management doctrine that a just God would have taken heed to.

I can also see the type of skewing of teachings which Craig describes by looking at the history of the church. Remember when the Roman Catholic church (not meant as a slam, just a historical example - my wife is Catholic) allowed family members to buy their loved ones lifelong salvation into heaven? That was a common thought in the day. We do not see that now. I can see teachings being skewed to the hellfire and brimstone direction to get people to live within the church rules much like the buying into heaven idea. I can't see God sending me to hell because I think that way and still do the best I can to lead a good life and do good works. Thinking in this direction will make me a much better and productive Christian, much like the previous example made more productive employees.

I guess you could sum up my ramblings with the idea that faith through fear of everlasting damnation can not be true faith. Faith without fear is a true form of faith and one that seems much more reasonable to one that would know all.

-- Slick (slick@huchemama.com), October 02, 1998.

If anyone knows the bible...it is NOT Van Impe!

I repeat NOT Jack Van Impe!

He. like many other false prophets, have been wrong over and over again; unfortunately, we don't live in the Old testament times when ONE false prediction would result in stoning!

ALL the flakes (Hal Lindsey, Van Impe, Hinn, LaHey, etc.) would trouble the church of God no longer...

-- The one true God (a@follower.of), December 22, 2004.

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