November 19, 2021
It’s all yours today…
February 4, 2019
December 22, 2012
May 31, 2015
We do ….. Ugggh! ! !
sNOw we don’t—-at least not here on Orygun
no snow here in Georgia. Was in the 30s this morning and the locals and those born and raised in FL would think that they were just going to freeze solid if they went outside…kidding.
Me: native Minnesota…my claim to sh/fame: I’ve experienced -40F temps. 30s ain’t cold.
We have clouds with no rain-must be a spiritual application there!
Linn! Good ponder – thank you
Michael, That was a fascinating article! How us it that women played a more prominent role in the early Christian Church than they do in today’s evangelical and fundamentalist churches? How do we explain that?
It’s fascinating…I love finding stuff like that…
It only snows here once a year for about 30 minutes.
I grew up in So. Calif. Invited to attend an evening service at a “Christian” church in Burbank in1948, (47?), i still remember the shock of coming out of the service to see everything coated in a blanket of white. …. Just one time…. 👍
Right now we’re trying to get the snow blower out of the carport – past the heavy old DR trimmer…..
Yesterday I made a donation at the grocery store to provide Thanksgiving dinner to a needy family – sorry to say it was a bit grudging as there are people up here skilled in gaming the do gooders…. I am a bit ashamed of myself
JD, my mother grew up in Colorado Springs – she claimed it only snowed in the afternoon and was gone by morning ? ? ?
What might a universalist interpretation of this passage be?
“This is evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be considered worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are also suffering— since indeed God considers it just to repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to grant relief to you who are afflicted as well as to us, when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might, when he comes on that day to be glorified in his saints, and to be marveled at among all who have believed, because our testimony to you was believed.” (2 Thessalonians 1:5-10 ESV)
The text in particular that I have the question about is “punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord”.
A learned universalist would take the passage in context and attempt find its meaning sin language and tradition, along with a narrative of Gods saving work in history.
I know of no universalist who thinks there will be no judgement or reckoning and punishment.
The question would be around the word interpreted in English as “eternal”.
“Ancient Greek had two words that are commonly translated as “eternal”: aḯdios and aiónios. The latter of these terms is an adjective clearly deriving from the noun aión, from which we get the English “eon”: it is an old word, appearing already in Homer, where it refers normally to a lifetime, or else some definite period of time. It never suggests an infinite stretch of time, and in later writers it continues to mean, almost always, either a lifetime or some particular period of time.
What, then, about the adjective aiónios? Here is where problems arise, since the adjective seems first to occur in Plato, and Plato adapts it to a very special sense. Plato had the idea that time was a moving image of eternity, with the implication that eternity itself does not move or change: it is not an infinite length of time, but a state of timelessness (think of what time must have been like before God created the universe). This is quite different from the common meaning of aḯdios, which the presocratic philosophers had already used to express precisely an infinite stretch of time, with no beginning and no end; and this is what aḯdios continued to mean.
So, we have two adjectives in use: one of them clearly means “infinite,” when applied to time; but the other does not, and what is more, it is connected with a common noun—aión—that means simply a lifetime, with no suggestion of eternity. Aiónios remains relatively rare in classical Greek, and then we come to the Septuagint, or the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible, where it occurs very frequently (aḯdios, by contrast, only appears twice, and those in parts originally written in Greek). Now, aiónios here can refer to things that are very old (as we say in English, “old as the hills”), but by no means eternal—what in this world is eternal? This is a very common usage, based on the Hebrew term. But it can also be used in reference to the world to come, and here we face the fundamental issue.
If one speaks of the next life, or something that happens in the next life, as aiónios, does it mean simply the next era or eon, or does it carry the further implication of “eternal”? Many of the passages in the Septuagint seem to indicate that the meaning is “of that eon”—and after all, it is a very long, but still finite period of time, that elapses between our death and judgment day and the resurrection, and this could be called an era. What is more, there is some reason to think that, after the resurrection, time itself will come to an end. So, saying that punishment in the afterlife is aiónios may just mean “for that eon” or epoch, and not forever.
We argued that this sense was understood by many (or most) of the Church Fathers, and that when they used aiónios of punishment in the afterlife, they were not necessarily implying that punishment would be eternal. Of course, one can only show this by careful examination of specific passages in context, and this is what we tried to do in our book. Very often, the evidence is ambiguous; for example, when God is described as aiónios, it is very difficult to be sure whether the word means “of the other world” or simply “eternal,” since God is both. We hope readers will decide for themselves, on the basis of the evidence we collected and the interpretations we offered.”
Would God subject a human soul to Eternal punishment? I have to leave that decision up to our righteous and gracious God.
That said,, from a human viewpoint it does seem overkill. However. I just have to trust God. He takes no pleasure in the deaths of the wicked…. Is there a hint there? Dunno
Driving out of the mountains today (2:30pm) there was a young man trudging down the road with a backpack. I’m guessing headed for the county park where we have a homeless encampment. There’s snow on the ground – prayer appreciated….
I was thinking the same thing as it’s cold tonight and there are a lot of homeless here.
Thanking God for my own blessings and praying for them…
Michael, I’m glad you brought this up, seeing I never read Plato.
..”Plato had the idea that time was a moving image of eternity, with the implication that eternity itself does not move or change: it is not an infinite length of time, but a state of timelessness..”..
A sense of timelessness would begin to appear in 1905 and 1915, with Einsteins’s Special and General Relativities. These state an intuitive concept of time, is fundamentally flawed. And, by extension, these flaws will carry over into any doctrine that touches on the subject of time. These flaws worsen as Quantum Mechanics later emerges. Ironicly, time in motion, is vaguely simular to modern concepts of the timelessness of energy. Think photons here.
To be a human with mass would be the definition of mortal. And mortal would experience time vastly different then immortality, or put simply, that which is mass-less.
This concept would explain the idea that to God: A day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years is as a day. Our concept of time as objects with mass, is decoupled from reality as experienced by God , or a spirit.
“When we’ve been there ten thousand years..”.. is another example of a flawed concept of time.
As an extremely young child I realized something was wrong with the concept of time and eternity.
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