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ruptible and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God thro' faith unto salvation, ready to be revealed in the last time.” 1 Pet. 1: 3—5. Here you see the incorruptible inheritance is réserved, not for all men unconditionally, but for those only, who are kept, thro’ faith unto salvation. All men have not faith. Again, hear St. Paul : ..And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.” Heb. 5: 9.Now good common sense must teach you that this clearly implies that Christ will be the author of eternal salvation to none but those who do obey him.
Take the case of the Phillippian Jailer. Deeply agitated, he cried out to Paul and Silas, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved ?? Acts 16: 30. Now, if Paul and Silas were Universalist preachers, they would naturally, as honest men, have sought to calm the fears of the jailer by telling him that there was no danger-that salvation was unconditionally secured to him and all men. But did they so preach? No. They pointed his troubled soul to Christ and assured him that he should be saved if he believed in the Lord Jesus Christ. The Universalist mode of explaining away this interesting incident in the Apostolic history, has been considered and its sophistry exposed in a previous letter. (See Letter III.)
The doctrine of future retribution-is strongly implied in our Saviour's interview with a man who came to him with this question"Lord, are there few that be saved ?" Luke 13:23–30. Now if Christ had been a Universalist preacher, here was a happy opportunity to assail the popular error upon the subject of the future destiny of the wicked, and to set, at least, one person right. But did Christ preach to him Universalism? Far from it. Look at the case. It is evident he did not teach Universalism, (1.)From the fact that the question was proposed to him by one of his hearers. Did you ever know of an instance in which one of the hearers of a Universalist preacher, ever applied 10 his minister to get his opinion as to how many would
finally be saved? Why the very fact that he is a Universalist answers the question, If Christ taught the doctrine that all men were equally and immortally happy upon entering the eternal world, his hearers would have all known this to have been one of the peculiarities of his faith, and they would as soon have asked him how many gods there were, as whether few would be saved. (2) If up to this time,Christ had taught Universalism ambiguously and with reservation, now that the question is fairly submitted to him, and seeing he must have come from heaven, not to save men from perdition, for they were never exposed to future sufferings—but to teach Universalism, it would seem all ambiguity and reservation must be laid aside, and we shall have an unqualified declaration that all men will be saved. Go'to any. Universalist preacher with the question whether few.or many are to be saved, and he will answer it at once, and in such language too, as cannot honestly be misunderstood. (3). But the manner in which Christ answered this question clearly shows that the Son of God regarded the man who asked the question, as in danger of losing his own soul. Hear the answer of Christ. Let it ring in your ears with all its awful solemnity, and sink down into your heart. . .
“Strive to enter into the strait gate; for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and he shall answer and say unto you, I know not from whence ye are: Then shall ye begin to say, We have eaten and drunken in thy presence, and thou hast taught in our streets. But he shall say, I tell you I know not whence ye are ; depart from me all ye workers of iniquity. There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the kingdom of God, and you yourselves thrust out. And they shall come from the east, and from the west, and from the north, and from the south, and shall sit down in the kingdorn of God.”
Mr. Whittemore in bis Guide, in which he says, "every threatening is explained,” has given this text an ingenious ‘go by.” He quotes 7: 13, 14,-attempts an explanation,
-refers to Luke 13: 24, as à parallel text, and passes along. But your preachers and authors who have attempted an explanation of this text, tell us that the inquirer did not seek information as to the number who would enjoy salvation in the world to come, but how many there are saved now in this world, -that is, he wished to know whether there were few or many righteous persons in this world. A grave question truly !, The answer of Christ is referred to the famous destruction of Jerusalem. : It was then and there the door was shiut to the Jews, and opened to the Gentiles; it was then and there that Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and all the Prophets, were seen in the kingdom of God, while they themselves were thrust out, &c. - To all this I object,
1. If the inquirer wished to know the state of morals and religion, it is not a little singular that he should have gone to Christ, to have ascertained the state of society around him. He had been brought up in society, and had daily opportunities of observing the characters of his fellow men.He knew men were to be judged by their fruits, and he could have formed a very satisfactory conclusion as to what - portion of society were then pious, without going to Christ with the question. It is an unnatural question to be asked under such circumstances....
2. In the answer of our Lord, nothing is said adapted to teach the inquirer that Jerusalem was to be destroyed at all, much less that the Master of the house was to rise up at that time and shut the door of the kingdom of heaven. If this was the allusion, the inquirer'. cannot be supposed to have understood it. . . . .
3. As a matter of fact it is not true, that Christ, the Master of the house, shut the door of grace or glory against the Jews, either at, or any time since, the destruction of
Jerusalem. The Jew and Gentile since the crucifixion, stand on a dead level as to religious riyhts and privileges. Christ has broken down the middle-wall of partition, and his gospel was before the destruction of Jerusalem, and has
one that believeth, to the JEW first, and also to the Gentile.” Rom. 1: 16. or
4. The persons said to be exeluded here from the kingdom of God, are not the Jews as a nation, but "All the workers of iniquity.” Does all in the Vocabulary of Universalism mean all ? . .'
5. If the kingdom of God, verse 28th, denotes the gospel kingdom, which Universalist expositors tell us was fully set up at tire destruction of Jerusalem, then it is not true that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, were ever in the kingdom of God at the destruction of Jerusalem, nor can it be true that they will ever be in that kingdoin. How then can it be true, that any of those who heard Christ on this occasion, did see those Old Testament saints in that kingdom? Besides, the most, if not all present on this occasion to bear Christ, were in eternity betore Jerusalem was destroyed. How then could they see Abraham and all the prophets entering into the gospel kingdom in this world? These are mysteries. The more I examine your explanations, the more supremely ridiculous and contradictory they seem to me. The truth is never thus inconsistent and contradictory,
Once more, and I will close this epistle. I draw an argument in favor of the doctrine of a judgment to come, from the general history of Christ and bis Apostles. What a deep solicitude they manifested for the salvation of sinners! See St. Paul-how anxious he is to “save some?” — Hear his pathetic and solemo warnings! See him warning men from house to house WITH TEARS! Are these the feelings, these the admonitions of a man who believes that death will-level all distinctions of character, and elevate all to glory? Look over the personal promises, limited as they are to the believing-look over those numerous texts of
Scripture, examples of which have been given, which necessarily imply by their grammatical construction, a judgment to coine, and then say—if the Word of God is true, is
not Universalism a salanic delusion? In -my next, I pro· pose to call your attention to the threatenings of the Bible.
My Dear Sir:
Having finished my arguments in favor of the doctrine of a judgment 10 come, as drawn from the promises, I will now invite your attention to several additional considerations, by which ihis sentiment is sustained, growing out of the positive threatenings of the Word of God.
I will refer you to Matt. 10: 28. “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul, but rather fear bim, which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” The parallel passage in Luke is still more explicit. Luke says the casting into hell is to take place
F"AFTER he hath killed the body.” After the body is killed, you will readily admit, that the spirit is in eternity.
The punishment then threatened in this passage, is a punishment which can be inflicted only in the eternal world.Read Luke 12: 4, 5. “And I say unto you, my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that, have no more that they can do. But I will forewarn you whom ye shall sear: Fear him, which after he hath killed, hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear bim."
But what will Universalists do with this portion of the divine testimony? Can it be explained away in any plausible manner? We will see. The champion of Modern Universalism, H.Ballou,has attempted an explanation. He tells us that the Greek word psuche,here translated soul means “the natural life,”—that the power to be feared, which might kill the soul-("the natural life') was the Romans-that“kil