The doctrine of universal salvation or the salvation of all is a poorly understood scriptural doctrine of God that has been polluted by mainstream Christianity over the last 3,000 years. The process of trying to free the minds from centuries of church’s indoctrination has proven to be a most difficult task, however, this page will be dedicated to defending the universalist position while critiquing those who choose to speak against it.
This first video is a short snippet from a longer video on the Capturing Christianity YouTube Channel. In this video, Dr. William Lane Craig attempts to refute Universal Salvation but all he really does is repeat some of the same old arguments used against the doctrine of universal salvation without addressing the scriptures that actually contradicts what he claims. In my critique, I will be addressing all of Dr. Craig’s arguments and I will provide the necessary scriptural defense to prove that he is wrong.
This video begins with Mr. Bertuzzi asking for Dr. Craig’s response to the arguments made by universal salvation but he fails to consider that there are dozens of scriptures that teach universal salvation. The arguments for universal salvation are indeed scriptural. In his opening statement, Mr. Bertuzzi claims that it is a universalist argument that Hell will be emptied and everyone will eventually come to their senses but this statements presumes that the universalist believes in hell at all. I will come back to this later because I first want to address Dr. Craig’s critique.
In Dr. Craig’s first statement, he claims to be a “biblical theist” but I’m not even sure if he is capable of telling us exactly what that it. If by biblical he means pertaining to the bible, then he has already created for himself, a most complicated paradox that he himself couldn’t even explain. He goes on to say that he always consults with what the “bible” says about these things but he has not even claimed which bible he is referring to. He then says, “Such a view (referring to universal salvation) is patently contradictory to biblical teaching….”
The word “patently” is defined as clear or without doubt so what Dr. Craig is saying is that the bible clearly and without any doubt contradicts the view of universal salvation. We shall see if there is any truth to Dr. Craig’s statement. He then goes on to quote the parable of the goats and sheep in the book of Matthew not even understanding that this text is a parable. The goats and the sheep represent two groups of people, the called and the chosen, the few and the many. Matthew 25:46 is one of Christianity’s favorite proof texts to justify their belief in the teaching of an eternal hell. What they fail to realize is that the words everlasting and eternal are not correct translations of the Greek word “aionios”. Dr. Craig claims that the word for eternal is the same in both cases and he is correct if we are to assume that the most popular Christian bibles are infallible. The word in question is NOT eternal it is the Greek word “aionios” which is an adjective derived from it’s root noun “aion”. Since adjectives describe nouns, we know that an adjective cannot take on a different meaning from it’s root noun. So as hourly pertains to hours, aionios pertains to aions. So what does aion mean? If you refer to Dr. Strong’s Blue Letter Bible webpage, you might end up being more confused than you originally were but the truth is actually hidden right in plain in the midst of the religious traditions added to the commentary. The Greek word “aion” is properly defined as an age. The King James Bible translates “aion” more commonly as the word “ever” but let’s see if that is biblically consistent.
Revelation 11:15 And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
The words “ever” in Revelation 11:15 are both translated from the Greek word “aion in the King James Bible but does Christ really reign for ever and ever?
1 Corinthians 15:24-25 Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power. For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet.
Christ only reigns TILL He puts all enemies under His feet in preparation of delivering the kingdom to the God the Father. The Greek word “aion” means an age. Christ reigns for the ages of ages meaning that throughout all of the ages, He reigns in all ages. If “aion” means an age, then the Greek adjective “aionios” which is describing it’s root noun “aion” could only be defined as pertaining to the ages and not eternal. Need more convincing? Let’s take a quick look at the Greek Textus Receptus of Matthew 25:46;
Notice that the word “everlasting” is shown to come from the Greek word “aionios” which is what the church wants you to think. From this alone, one might have to contend that everlasting might just be an appropriate translation for “aionios” but that is only what we see on the surface. The best explainer of scripture is scripture itself. Let’s go to Romans 16:25-26;
Romans 16:25-26 Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began, But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:
Notice that the same Greek word “aionios” which is found in Matthew 25:46 is also found in Romans 16:25 but in the latter scripture, “aionios” is left untranslated. They just left it alone but why would they do that? Why did they not translate “aionios” as eternal or everlasting in Romans 16:25? They didn’t translate it that way because it would contradict what we’re told in Romans 16:26, But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith: The revelation of the mystery of the preaching of Jesus Christ which had been kept secret since the world began could not be an eternal or everlasting secret because the preaching of Jesus Christ has now been made manifest.
Did you notice the word “everlasting” in Romans 16:26 in reference to the commandment of the everlasting God? They left “aionios” untranslated in Romans 16:25 but in the very next verse they remembered to translated it as everlasting? This is terrible biblical scholarship and they will be punished for taking away and adding to the word of God. We don’t have to argue if God is everlasting because we know He is everlasting. That doesn’t make the translation correct. We can say God is everlasting but that is only because God is immortal. He is not capable of dying. The proper rendition here should be the Eonian God or the God of the Ages which is no slack on God for He is the Creator of the ages and is God in all ages.
The doctrines of eternal life and eternal punishment are both false Christian idol of the mind. These doctrines have been taught to Christians for centuries but they are both heresy. Believers are not promised eternal life. Believers are promised aionios life or a life the abides for the age to come. We know in the resurrection that those who rise to life (aionios life) will rise first. Believers will rise from the dead in spiritual glorified bodies that can never die again. They are made IMMORTAL! This is when believers reign with Christ for the “millennia” and while we can presume that the duration will be quite long, it is not eternal. Even a literal millennia represents a thousand years which is clearly not eternal so the doctrine of eternal life is simply Christian dogma. If a person was actually sentenced to eternal punishment wouldn’t they too have to have eternal life? You can’t be punished for all eternity unless you are alive for all eternity. This proves that the doctrines of Christianity to be contradictory here and the problem is that Christian teachers and leaders have not properly defined the Greek phrase “aionios kolosis”. We have already determined that “aionios” means age-abiding or pertaining to the ages so whatever “kolosis” is, it is not eternal. Most popular Christian bibles translate “aionios kolosis” as everlasting punishment but the punishment is not everlasting, it’s age-lasting. The purpose of punishment is to correct but there must be room for correction. There can be no correction is the punishment never ends. Punishment and/or judgment must also be balanced. Being punished for all eternity is an abominable idea.
Proverbs 11:1 A false balance is abomination to the Lord: but a just weight is his delight.
This scripture proves that God will be just in His punishments but does Christianity believe that? I don’t think so because Christians believe that God is justified in sending cowardly people to the same lake of fire with murderers to be tortured for all eternity they suppose. That’s right…. Christians believe in this false balance because even under human terms, being a coward is not even illegal but God apparently thinks that they should suffer the same fate as a murderer? I don’t think so…
Punishment that has no redeeming purpose or learning measure is just evil. Parents punish their children all the time but the punishment should be corrective and not abusive. Parents who abuse their children get them taken away. I think we all can agree that child abuse is horrible but this is what Christians believe God is going to do with His creation. God is going to commit the most evil atrocity against humanity worse than the likes of Hitler, Stalin, Mao, and other genocidal maniacs. Should God be likened to the evils of these monsters? The Greek word “kolosis” comes from the root word “kolazō” which means to lop, to prune, to chastise, to correct. We could certainly include the word punish but God’s punishment is not eternal. It’s corrective. It is interesting that this Greek word “kolosis” comes from a word that means to prune. To prune? Surely we know what it means to prune in horticulture right?
According to Wikipedia, pruning is a horticultural, arboricultural, and silvicultural practice involving the selective removal of certain parts of a plant, such as branches, buds, or roots. The practice entails the targeted removal of diseased, damaged, dead, non-productive, structurally unsound, or otherwise unwanted plant material from crop and landscape plants.
What if God wanted to remove the diseased, carnal, sinful, non-productive, unspiritual, dead flesh material from humanity? How would He go about doing that? Casting them into a literal lake of fire to be burned for all eternity? How would anyone learn from that? Does a horticulturist prune plants and trees for all eternity? The reasons to prune plants according to Wikipedia include deadwood removal, shaping (by controlling or redirecting growth), improving or sustaining health, reducing risk from falling branches, preparing nursery specimens for transplanting, and both harvesting and increasing the yield or quality of flowers and fruits.
Does this sound horrifying or glorifying? What creator wouldn’t want to make his or her creation better? The goats go away into age-lasting correction (pruning) not eternal punishment. Do you know how depraved one must be to adopt such an evil carnal teaching such as that of eternal punishment? Christians struggle to embrace these truths because there minds are so badly influenced by the evil religious dogmas of men. The sheep go into age-abiding life for which they alone experience while the rest of the world is dead and still in the grave awaiting the resurrection to judgment. When the age of judgment begins, the age of life with Christ ends but believers continue to live because they were made immortal in the resurrection. Then the saints shall judge the world as Paul proclaims in 1 Corinthians 6:2.
Dr. Craig then goes on to say that it is unbiblical to say that eventually hell will be emptied and that everyone will be saved… UNBIBLICAL? So there’s no scripture in the entire bible that says God will save everyone? Is this guy serious?
1 Timothy 4:9-11 This saying is trustworthy and deserves full acceptance. In fact, we labor and strive for this, because we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of everyone, especially of those who believe. (Holman Christian Standard Bible)
Notice that the word “especially” is included and not the word exclusively. God’s salvation is not exclusive to those who believe, rather, believers have a more special salvation not by their own works or merit but by God’s doing. That doesn’t eliminate or disqualify the rest of the world from being saved. 1 Timothy 4:10 completely and unequivocally contradicts Dr. Craig in his above statement. This idea that hell will be emptied is a paradox because this premise assumes that hell is real or that it exists. Hell is an invention of men created to control people through fear. If the fear of hell is what motivates you to love God then I put that love into question. What woman could ever truly love her husband if he threatened her with harm in exchange for her undying love and commitment to him? That is a contradiction of love because love comes from love. Love is not a product of fear, it is a product of love. Why do children “love” their parents? Because their parents loved them first. I put quotes around the love that comes from children because their very understanding of love comes from what they learn from their parents. You can’t demand that someone love you then threaten them with an eternal hell if they don’t. That’s not love, that’s manipulation.
The hell paradox that I mentioned above is a paradox because hell itself is UNBIBICAL! It is inconceivable that this guy Dr. Craig is seemingly someone that is a leader within the Christian institution. I mean he’s considered to be a theologian for crying out loud but he can’t even determine what is scripture and what isn’t. The word “hell” is found in King James New Testament a total of 23 times from three totally different Greek words. Gehenna, Hades, and Tartaroo. For the purposes of this critique, I am going to only focus on the Greek word hades because this is not a study on hell. I’ve already done that on this blog and anyone can access it at anytime if they so choose to here at The False Doctrine of Hell Exposed and you can click on that hyperlink to go to that page.
Moving along, the Greek word hades is found a total of 11 times in the King James New Testament and in 10 out of the 11 times it is found, hades is translates as hell. So in most popular bible translations, you will see hell instead of hades but even still, some translations have chosen to leave hades untranslated due to the controversy of hell.
Matthew 16:18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. (New King James Version)
The gates of Hades is a completely figurative statement made by Christ because Hades does not have anything to do with literal gates. The historical takeaway here is that the Church already had a view of hell from what they had learned from the Church leaders, so when Italian poet Dante Alighieri wrote his “fictional” Divine Comedy, religious leaders changed Hades to Hell based the influences of religious fantasy;
Dante passes through the gate of Hell, which bears an inscription ending with the phrase “Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch’intrate”, most frequently translated as “Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.”
These ideas had already entered the minds of Christians so this just one of the ways in which Christians became indoctrinated into believing some seriously evil lies. Since Hell is not Hades then what exactly is Hades?
This is Dr. Strong’s definition of hades as it is recorded in his Exhaustive Concordance of the bible;
ᾅδης háidēs, hah’-dace; from G1 ἄλφα (alpha) (as negative particle) and G1492 εἴδω (eidō) ; properly, unseen, i.e. “Hades” or the place (state) of departed souls:—grave, hell.
Notice that this word seemingly has multiple definitions which can be confusing in and of itself but let’s not forget that Dr. Strong himself was a Christian and influenced by religious tradition. Hades is a word that comes from the Greek word eidō which means to see. If we add the negative particle “a” to eidō we have to not see or the unseen as Dr. Strong clearly illustrates. But then he adds in another definition as the place (state) of departed souls which gives room to the religious fantasy that Christians already believe. It is a common idea within orthodox Christianity that life does not end at death but rather only the body dies. The soul or spirit I suppose goes to a literal place and is alive there until the resurrection. This is not what the bible teaches and for someone like Dr. Craig who claims to be a biblical theist ignores the scripture in Ecclesiastes that says the dead know nothing. Dr. Strong then goes on to define hades as the grave and as hell. How can hell be described as just the grave if hades is supposed to represent hell and the grave? The grave is where we bury our loved ones when they pass on. Hell is some underworld of torture and punishment. How ironic that this idea of hades is similar to that of pagan Greek mythology but Christians have no problem believing in myths instead of the word of God. The reason why hades is defined as hell and the grave is because that’s how it is translated in the King James Bible. Here are all 10 scriptures that translated hades as hell with Dr. Strong’s Greek indicator G86;
Matthew 11:23 And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: G86 for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day.
Matthew 16:18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell G86 shall not prevail against it.
Luke 10:15 And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted to heaven, shalt be thrust down to hell. G86
Luke 16:23 And in hell G86 he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
Acts 2:27 Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, G86 neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.
Acts 2:31 He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, G86 neither his flesh did see corruption.
Revelation 1:18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell G86 and of death.
Revelation 6:8 And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell G86 followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.
Revelation 20:13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell G86 delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.
Revelation 20:14 And death and hell G86 were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
Now the King James Bible translators had no problem translating hades as hell in all of the above scriptures but there is one verse that they didn’t and here it is;
1 Corinthians 15:55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, G86 where is thy victory?
Why didn’t they translate hades as hell here? Because the Christian leaders at the time didn’t want Christians thinking there would ever be victory over their pagan hell so they translated hades as grave in this one scripture. But the truth shall set you free! Acts 2:27 implies that Christ went to hell but what did Christ do to deserve hell? Did He reject Himself? No, Jesus died for the sins of the world and He went to the hades (THE GRAVE) where all dead people go because the wages of sin is death not eternal life in hell. So the real question here is… will HADES eventually be emptied because hades is not hell and hell is not hades. Will humanity be freed from the bondage of death and the grave? YES it will and that is why Paul declares to death and the grave, “Where is your sting”? Where is your victory? in reference Hosea 13:14;
Hosea 13:14 “I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death. O Death, I will be your plagues!
O Grave, I will be your destruction!
God is going to abolish death which Paul says is the last enemy to be destroyed! God is going to empty hades in the resurrection when all are made alive in Christ in the same way that we all died in Adam. Nobody had to choose Adam to die in Adam. Nobody was ever able to reject Adam. And no one will be able to reject Christ when He puts down all rule, power, and authority. When He puts all of His enemies under His feet, all will be in submission to Christ. This is all recorded in 1 Corinthians 15 so it baffles me how Dr. Craig has come to the conclusions he has.
Hell will not be emptied because hell is a Christian hoax. Hades or the grave will be emptied and that is a biblical fact! God will be all in all!
Dr. Craig then goes on to make his next point but asserting that the church condemned the early church father Origen for his belief in the apokatastasis. He rightly defines the Greek word apokatastasis as the restoration of all things but then goes on to say that he believed that the church quite rightly condemned this idea as unbiblical. Where do these people come from? I mean you have to work really hard to be this foolish.
Acts 3:20-21 and that He may send Jesus Christ, who was preached to you before, whom heaven must receive until the times of restoration of all (apokatastasis) things, which God has spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began. (New King James Version)
The Greek word apokatastasis is actually in the word of God so how can Dr. Craig agree with the church that believed this to be unbiblical? There is another argument that the church didn’t even condemn Origen for his belief in universal salvation but was rather condemned for his beliefs on other matters. There is a write up that you can read that talks more about this subject because I don’t want to spend too much time dealing with a matter that is quite irrelevant in my opinion. The church has been wrong on a number of issues so even if the church condemned Origen for his belief in universal salvation it essentially means nothing. The church believed that the Apocrypha was scripture for decades before it was eventually removed and considered non-canon. This assumption of Dr. Craig that the church has the supreme authority on doctrinal issues is another issue in an of itself. The church endorses a lot of unscriptural doctrines that are based solely on religious tradition. Here is the link to the write up regarding Dr. Craig’s claim that Origen was condemned for his belief in the salvation of all.
Dr, Craig then alludes to this idea that there’s no good reason to think that universal salvation is true but I guess we should ignore what God desires…
1 Timothy 2:3-4 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
Let’s think about this for second… God DESIRES that all men (peoples) be saved. This is God’s desire. Have you ever desired something? When you desire something, it means you really want whatever it is that you desire to come to pass. So the salvation of all is something that God desires but Dr. Craig believes that is no good reason to think or believe that God will get what He desires. Who or what can stop God from getting what He desires? Is there anything too hard for God? What if I showed a scripture that says God will get what He desires? Would you believe the scriptures or continue to believe the lies perpetuated by the likes of Dr. Craig and his ilk?
Isaiah 46:9-10 ….I am God, there is no other; I am God, there is none like me. At the beginning I declare the outcome; from of old, things not yet done. I say that my plan shall stand, I accomplish my every desire.
God declares that He will accomplish His every desire so when God says that He desires that all are saved, then the only conclusion here is that God will accomplish that desire, the desire that all be saved. I think agreeing with God is a good reason to believe that universal salvation is true.
Dr. Craig finishes his critique of universal salvation by giving his opinion about the state of the damned in hell and their supposed hatred towards God for punishing them in hell. That’s an interesting thing to say because I wouldn’t expect anyone to love their tormentor but Dr. Craig’s theology is so skewed it’s hard for me to accept that he is a beloved Christian theologian in the Christian community. He literally has no clue what the purpose of God’s judgment is. His facial expressions in the video seem to show that he has an implacable hatred towards his fellow man. I think atheists and non-believers are justified to deny God’s existence or to even hate this “God” Christianity preaches about seeing that it is this “God” that is going to literally torture their family members in a place called hell for all eternity. What’s so implacable about that? Seems rather reasonable in my opinion. But this “god” of Christianity is not the God of the Universe. The “god” of Christianity is Christianity itself and it is this religion that men choose to worship and exalt over the mighty Creator of all things. I think that most reasonable people can agree that infinite punishment for finite sins is a bit of a contradiction. I’ve heard some say that sinning against a holy and infinite God warrants infinite punishment as if God could ever be so offended to even respond in such a damnable way. But this is just another Christian ploy to justify the horrible creeds they believe.
Dr. Craig believes that the sinner in his or her own hatred towards God or their (big word alert) “intransigence” against God would never repent or bow the knee if God were to let them out of hell. I must admit that I had to look that word up but it means, the refusal to change one’s views or to agree about something. What if it is Dr. Craig that is intransigent about God’s desire to save all of humanity regardless if God says He will accomplish all of His desires? Maybe it is Dr. Craig that refuses to change his wicked views and actually believe in the glorious gospel that bring hope to the world and not just the many to succumb to the stronghold of the church. So we know that there will be a resurrection of the dead both of the just and the unjust…
Acts 24:15 I have hope in God, which they themselves also accept, that there will be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and the unjust.
This is echoed in John 5:28-29 and in Daniel 12:2-3;
John 5:28-29 Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of judgment.
Daniel 12:2-3 And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, Some to everlasting life, Some to shame and everlasting contempt. Those who are wise shall shine Like the brightness of the firmament, And those who turn many to righteousness Like the stars forever and ever.
Are living people in the graves or dead people? God is not the God of the dead but the God of the living. This idea that people do not really die when they die is as pagan an idea as the carnal ideology of a literal heaven with babies flying playing harps and literal streets of gold. Who are the many that sleep in the dust of the earth? Is this referring to the living?
Psalm 13:3 Consider and hear me, O Lord my God; Enlighten my eyes, Lest I sleep the sleep of death;
Dead people are sleeping in the dust of the earth. They aren’t in a hell or a heaven, they are dead sleeping in the dust of the earth awaiting one of two resurrection events. How ironic is it that Paul did not speak about life before the resurrection in 1 Corinthians 15 at all. There is death, and then there is the resurrection;
1 Corinthians 15:21 For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead.
Where is a hell at? Where do we fit hell into the whole picture of what the scriptures teach about death and the resurrection? Hell is Christian fantasy, a belief system borrowed from the pagans to control people through fear. Hell is not a doctrine of God, it is heresy and an evil one at that. Getting back on track, we know from the scriptures that there are two resurrection events, a resurrection to life and a resurrection to judgment but neither of these resurrection events are everlasting as the Hebrew word “olam’ does not mean everlasting. There are many scriptures in which “olam” could never mean everlasting.
Leviticus 16:34 This shall be an everlasting statute for you, to make atonement for the children of Israel, for all their sins, once a year.” And he did as the Lord commanded Moses.
The word “everlasting” is translated from the Hebrew word “olam” but clearly this is not an everlasting statute it was an age-lasting statute. The Hebrew word carries a similar meaning as the Greek word “aionios” which pertains to the ages.
Psalm 90:2 Before the mountains were brought forth, Or ever You had formed the earth and the world, Even from everlasting (olam) to everlasting (olam), You are God.
What in the world does “everlasting to everlasting” even mean? How many everlastings are there? If we read the context here, it is clear that this is pertaining to the ages.
Psalm 90:1 Lord, You have been our dwelling place in all generations.
From generation to generation, age to age, God has always been God. This is really not that hard to understand but there can be no room for enlightenment if we continue to hold on to the lies taught to us by the church.
So from Daniel 12:2-3, we have a group of people that will awake to resurrection of olam (age-abiding) life and another group that will awake to a resurrection of olam (age-during) shame and contempt. What is this shame and contempt? Could it be classified or similarly linked to the weeping and gnashing of teeth that some will experience in the resurrection to judgment? We have all been programmed to think and believe that bad people will go to hell. It’s literally a common human view especially among English speaking people. These adjectives in the bible that describe the judgment of God whether literal or metaphorical can and sometimes does sound scary but there will be nothing in the judgment that can’t be compared to the suffering and trials we’ve all experienced in this earthly life. Have we all not felt shame? How about contempt (feeling less than or worthless)? Who has not ever wept or cried about something? Who has never been so upset that they would grind their teeth together in anger? These are all things we’ve all already have experienced here on earth. Why must we take these things and make them worse than they already are? Because that is an appeal to the human flesh and many of us are guilty of allowing the flesh to sway our judgement. God is just but will God do the right thing? Do you believe that torturing people in a place called hell for all eternity is a just punishment for even the worst of sinners?
Acts 17:31 because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead.”
God judges the world in righteousness? Righteousness is the quality or state of being morally correct and justifiable. Could any moral being believe that torturing people in fire is the correct way to punish or correct sinners? What do you think would be a reasonable result of God judging the world in righteousness? Eternal damnation? Annihilation? Let’s see what God says;
Isaiah 26:9 With my soul I have desired You in the night, Yes, by my spirit within me I will seek You early; For when Your judgments are in the earth, The inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.
When God judges the world in righteousness, the inhabitants of the world learn righteousness! This correlates to what we read in Daniel 12:3 when we read of MANY being turned to righteousness. So Dr. Craig’s position that those under the judgment of God will not repent clearly is not the biblical theist he claims to be. What does it mean to repent? Doesn’t it mean to turn away from sin? Would turning to righteousness not be considered repentance? What about Dr. Craig’s view that sinners will not bow the knee to God if giving an opportunity?
Philippians 2:10-11 so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Every knee will bow? Every tongue will confess? In the Greek, the word “exomologeō” means to give thanks but is translated as confess in most scriptures. It has the same implication but I’ve heard some argue that God will force this upon humanity even if they are doomed to hell. That is nonsense. This will be to the glory of God the Father so to assume that God will receive glory for forcing those doomed to hell to bow their knees (according to Christianity) contradicts God’s will for none to perish.
2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. King James Version)
God is not willing that any “should” perish? That all “should” come to repentance? I quoted to King James Bible here to show you something that the bible translators did to add in their religious persuasion. They knew that if God wills for something to happen that it must happen but they didn’t want you to know that. The knew that if God wanted all to come to repentance then all would but they didn’t want you to know that. So to stop you from knowing the truth, they added the word “should” to other words to implicate a possibility that it might not.
The Greek word for perish is “apollymi” but you can see in the Greek reverse interlinear that they added the word “should” to “apollymi” and the Greek word “chōreō” to change it’s meaning. There is really no word for “should” that can be directly translated from English to Greek. In some instances it is a little consequence but here, it changes the entire interpretation. Here is a better translation of 2 Peter 3:9 that doesn’t use the word should;
2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not willing for any to perish, but for all to come to repentance. (New American Standard Bible)
As you can see in the New American Standard Bible translation, they do not include the words “should” because “should” is not in the Greek. It’s not a part of the scriptures! I should go to work is not the same as, I will go to work. Does that make sense? The idea here was to take away the definitive nature of God’s declaration. In essence, the goal was to water down the word of God in such a way to influence the reader to leave room for doubt. Why would anyone want to or need to doubt God? If God is not “willing” for any to perish, what is so bad about that? It’s bad only for the Church because they want people to perish so they can be sent to hell and they can use this nonsense to keep Christians in submission to the will of the church. The word “willing” comes from the Greek word “boulomai” and here is how it is used in another scripture;
Luke 22:42 saying, “Father, if You are “willing”, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done.”
Even Jesus knew that if God is willing to, wills to do, or is not willing to do, it must happen according to God’s agenda. This idea that God cannot draw humanity to Christ and subdue all under the submission to Christ is a knock on God’s supreme power for it is God who is the Master Potter and we are the clay.
Dr. Craig then improperly credits the quote, “The door to hell is locked from the inside” to Jean-Paul Sartre when in actuality it was C.S. Lewis that made this statement. The actual quote comes from the book, “The Problem of Pain” by C.S. Lewis and it is stated as follows, ““the gates of hell are locked on the inside”. Sartre is best known for the statement, “Hell is other people” but what does any of this have to do with anything? These men indeed were both influenced by the doctrines of the church and human philosophy so it’s no surprise to me that certain Christian leaders would quote such men as if it gives any credence to the doctrine of hell. Where have we seen the phrase “the gates of hell”? It’s actually in the “bible”;
Matthew 16:18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
If we assume that this scripture is translated exactly as Christ said it, then there’s no wonder why people believe such evil doctrines. I have already explained that the hell here in Matthew 16:18 is actually hades and we know now that hell is not hades. Hades is better translated as the grave so do people lock themselves in the grave? You can certainly send yourself to the grave quicker by being reckless but once you are there, you are there and you will stay there because Jesus is the only one that can redeem anyone from the grave. Why? Because He has the keys!
Revelation 1:18 I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death.
Everyone locked in hades (the grave) will be freed from it’s clutches in the resurrection and that is why Paul says, “O death, where is your sting, O’ grave (hades), where is your victory”?
If we are truly sincere on “capturing Christianity”, that is, following in the ways of Christ, then we must have love and sound doctrine. Peace to all!