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you will admit is the crown of glory. See 2 Tim. 4:8. James 1:12. 1 Pet. 5:4. Rev. 2:10. 3:11. 4:4. Now, if Paul was a Universalist, he must have been a great simpleton indeed, to have made so much effort for that incorruptible crown, which will equally grace the heads of all, without any respect being bad to the question, whether they have run or have not run the christian race. If you should see a man endeavoring to urge the sun forward or retard his progress by the motions of his hands, you would regard him at once, as a mad-man, or a fool. But why? Because common sense and the well-known laws of nature would teach you his efforts could in no possible way effect the ohject desired. Was the great Apostle to the Gentiles playing such a game when he-run for an incorruptible crown, neither to be gained or lost by his race ? Yes, if your doctrine be true-Paul either did not know it, or he was such a siinpleton. Take which horn of the dilemma you please. .
(3) Again ; the Apostle expresses a sense of bis danger, when he says : *I keep under my body and bring it into subjection, lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a cast-AwJY.'— · I myself should be a cast-away. This was the danger. This thought animated the Apostle in his efforts to bring his body, all the passions and propensities of his whole nature, into subjection to the law of Christ. The figure, here employed, is most expressive. The word · Qdokimos' here rendered cast-away, is taken from bad metals, and denotes those which will not bear the test that may be applied to them; they are found base and worthless, and are therefore cast away. Such the Apostle intimates will be the case with hypocrites in that great coronation-day, when the incorruptible crown shall be placed upon the heads of the faithful. Then some, like base and worthless metals, not standing the test, will be cast away, To save himself from this fate, the Apostle labored to keep under his body and bring it into subjection. He does not say, that he is not influenced by other and even higher motives ; but he simply affirms that this is one motive influencing his character and conduct. Now, how could Paul have acted in this way, if he were a Universalist? Did you ever hear your preacher exhort his hearers to keep under their bodies and practice self-denial, that they might not be cast-a-ways ? Never. Let a Universalist preacher address his hearers in this manner and it would be thought at once, that he had renounced his system.
2. I cannot adopt your system, because I find in the Bible, another class of texts, which represents the glories of the heavenly world as the reward of fidelity to Christ. As an example, I refer you to the triumphant language of St. Paul, a short time before his martyrdom. Hear him :
For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course; I have kept the faith ; henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge,' will give me at that day; and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.' 2 Tim. 4:6.
This text is utterly inconsistent with Universalism ; because (1) Paul's language is that of a dying believer, anticipating future blessedness, on the ground that he had faithfully served Christ, and was therefore, entitled, according to the grace of God, to the rewards of the righteous. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith. But if the present life has no moral connection with the future, such considerations could not have cheered the hopes of the dying Apostle. (2) The text teaches us that Paul was not fully rewarded as he passed along in the journey of life. His labors were now over-they were passed ; but his reward is in the future.' Henceforth there is laid up for me (have not got it yet,) a crown of righteousness.' (3) This crown is to be given at, a particular timne — called that day. The demonstrative pronoun here points out a particular day, in distinction from all other days. (4). The crown
which Paul anticipated, in his dying hour, is to be conditionally bestowed. “But not to me only, but unto all them also —that love his appearing. Can you reconcile these expressions with modern Universalis ? i -- Another passage properly belonging to this class is Rev. 2:10. “Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life. Now if Universalism is the truth of God, what means this conditionality in this promise ? It is perfectly unmeaning. The passage would be just as true upon your system if it read, Be thou un-faithful until death and I will give thee a crown of life. Take another passage of the same class : ,
And I heard a voice from heaven, saying unto me, write-Blessed are the dead, which die in the Lord, from henceforth ; yea, saith the spirit that they may rest from their labórs and their works do follow them. Rev. 14:13. See also Rev. 3:21. .
This passage I cannot reconcile with your views. I cannot understand why the righteous, who die in the Lord are any more blessed than the wicked who die in their sins. Nor can I understand how their works can be said to follow them into eternity, if the present has nothing to do with the future. These things are all unreconcilable solecisms, more enigmatical and blind than the hieroglyphics upon the Egyptian pyramids, upon the hypothesis that Universalism is the truth of God.
There are other passages of this class, but these will suffice to illustrate this portion of the divine testimony. :
Yours as ever.
My Dear Sir :
I cannot believe in Universalism, because the promises of personal salvation are conditional. This has already been
mnade to appear, but you will allow me to call your attention to this point once more for further illustration. I find in the scriptures two kinds of promises, which I will denominate, for the sake of distinction, prophetical and personal promises. The prophetical promises are predictions of the future prosperity and blessedness of the Church, and as they are prophetical and not preceptive they. proclaim the blessing to be enjoyed without expressing the conditions of personal salvation. To illustrate; the promise to Abraham
“In thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed,” Gen. 22: 18-is a prophetical promise, and will serve as an example of this class of promises ; but when St. Paul comes to apply this promise to personal salvation, he explains it conditionally. Hear him.
And the scriptures foreseeing that God would justify the heathen thro' faith, preached before the gospel unto A braham, saying-In thee shall all nations be blessed; so then they which be of faith (none others) are blessed with faithful Abraham.' Gal. 3:8, 9. None are heirs of this promise according to the Apostle, but those who are of faith and are Christ's, and none are Christ's, but those who have the spirit of Christ. “If ye be Christ's then (not otherwise) are ye Abraham's seed and heirs according to the promise.” Gal. 3: 29.
As to the personal promises, which are conditional they are very numerous, and express the conditionality of salvation in a rich variety of language. I will refer you to a few passages as an illustration. ; "For God so loved the world that he gave bis Only Begotten Son, that WHOSOEVER BELIEVETH in him should not perish, but have eternal life.”
“And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son and BELIEVETH on him, may have everlasting life.”, “To him that OVERCOMETH will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame and am set down with my Father in his throne." John 3: 17. 6: 40. Rev. 3:21. Here you see the promise is conditional,—the world is to be overcome and faith in
the Son of God, is to be exercised, in order to personal salvation. Well, now, there are hundreds of such promises in the Bible, each and all of which are a complete refutation of Universalism; but if the case were otherwise, if there were one thousand prophetical promises in the Bible, predicting the future and eternal blessedness of mankind, without expressing any conditions, and but one solitary text, such as John 3:17, promising salvation upon conditions, then salvation would be clearly conditional, and its conditionality should be understood everywhere, where it may not be expressed. - Upon ihis common sense principle of interpretation all our legal documents are explained and understood. Should some one of your rich relatives bequeath to you a rich legacy, consisting of lands, to become yours on condition of your actual settlement upon them within a given time, altho' the bequest might be expressed over and over again in the last will and testament of your friend, yet if the condition be only once expressed, the Judge of Probate and the Administrator would understand the condition to be implied where it was not expressed, and would deal with you accordingly. A few years since a gentleman of great wealth died in Philadelphia by the name of Girard. In his will he made a conditional provision for erecting and endowing a splendid College, for the gratuitous education of orphan children. The bequest was given, fully and freely given, but given on-certain conditions. The papers have recently announced the melancholy intelligence, that the legacy is lost, thro? the neg. lect of the Commissioners.' 'How significant the appeal of the Apostle, “How shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation?"..
You will now allow me to direct your thoughts to a few more out of many passages, which clearly teach future retribution by implication. For illustration, hear the language of Peter. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who, according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incor