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Rob Bell And Eternal Hell


WalkerW

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Where do we as LDS stand on this universalism issue? On one hand we tell people that pretty much everyone minus the sons of perdition will be saved to heaven and yet on the other hand LDS doctrine only teaches that the Celestial kingdom is "heaven" as spoken of in the scriptures. We also have an understanding that on one hand the sons of perdition suffer forever yet on the other it is only for a specific time. We also confuse language found in section 19 by not associating it properly with section 76. It is all really quite confusing.

Personally I believe that no hell lasts forever for anyone. That seems ridiculous. I see hell as a temporary place that potentially can last forever (as a physical place) but that individuals entering that place will have an end at some finite point in their suffering.

I also believe that God never stops working to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of his children. He will continue on as long as possible to save every last one of his children into the kingdom where he resides.

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mercyngrace:

No not really. Agency is the right to choose, and have those choices mean something. Or else

2 Nephi 28:7-9

7 Yea, and there shall be many which shall say: Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die; and it shall be well with us.

8 And there shall also be many which shall say: Eat, drink, and be merry; nevertheless, fear God--he will justify in committing a little sin; yea, lie a little, take the advantage of one because of his words, dig a pit for thy neighbor; there is no harm in this; and do all these things, for tomorrow we die; and if it so be that we are guilty, God will beat us with a few stripes, and at last we shall be saved in the kingdom of God.

9 Yea, and there shall be many which shall teach after this manner, false and vain and foolish doctrines, and shall be puffed up in their hearts, and shall seek deep to hide their counsels from the Lord; and their works shall be in the dark.

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SS,

Yes. It's a false dichotomy because there is no law forcing some to reject Christ.

Also, the verses you posted are irrelevant. Universalism doesn't promise that men will be saved in their sins, it simply suggests they will ultimately choose to repent.

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If one were to believe in eventual happiness for all of God's children with a hell not lasting forever, all degrees of glory are "good" states, and even possibly eternal kingdom to kingdom progression...

does that same premise extend to the 1/3 part in the pre-mortal existence that choose to follow Lucifer's plan?

Will they have a chance to change and accept Christ and eventually progress to some state of happiness if they desire, or was that decision final and can never be taken back, repented of, etc?

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mercyngrace:

No law, but there is Agency. The SoP will remain in Outer Darkness by the act of their own WILL.

http://www.mormonwiki.com/Outer_Darkness

Again, universalism does not preclude agency.

As a concrete example, suppose you teach 200 students this semester. Is it possible that all 200 will pass the course? If your goal as the instructor is to help them learn the material well enough to pass, and to give them the opportunities they need to pass, the success rate is even higher. What if you are the perfect instructor, always available, and giving the each student exactly the knowledge they need to pass the course, even at great personal cost? What if you work to task rather than to time? Is it feasible that all student will eventually pass the course?

If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?

As for SOPs, And the end thereof, neither the place thereof, nor their torment, no man knows;

Neither was it revealed, neither is, neither will be revealed unto man, except to them who are made partakers thereof; Their ultimate fate is unknown.

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If one were to believe in eventual happiness for all of God's children with a hell not lasting forever, all degrees of glory are "good" states, and even possibly eternal kingdom to kingdom progression...

does that same premise extend to the 1/3 part in the pre-mortal existence that choose to follow Lucifer's plan?

Will they have a chance to change and accept Christ and eventually progress to some state of happiness if they desire, or was that decision final and can never be taken back, repented of, etc?

Good question. Here's some interesting speculation...

"President Brigham Young has suggested that the ultimate punishment of the sons of perdition may be that they, having their spiritual bodies disorganized , must start over again must begin anew the long journey of existence , repeating the steps that they took in the eternities before the Great Council was held. That would be punishment, indeed! "They will be decomposed, both soul and body (body and spirit make up the soul) , and return to their native element. I do not say that they will be annihilated; but they will be disorganized and will be as if they had never been; while "we" live and retain our identity and contend against those principles which tend to death or dissolution" (Journal of Discourses, 7:57). "The clay that marred in the potter's hands was thrown back into the unprepared portion to be prepared over again" (Ibid., 2:124) (John A. Widtsoe , Evidences and Reconciliation's, page 213)

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I don't think Rob Bell is really a universalist (not in the usual way it is meant). He, actually, believes in the possibility of "eternal progression". In other words, he doesn't think we will all, immediately, end up in heaven, as soon as we pass, but he does believe that the gates of heaven and access to Christ are always available, even after death. Just takes some a little longer to "get it".

He's an interesting guy and I, personally, really like his take on the Bible and Christianity. He has the best of Mormonism, without the other baggage (IMHO). :)

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Brian 2.0:

All Kingdoms of Glory are good. But some are better than others. I'm pretty hard in that I believe there is no progression between Kingdoms. We will be Resurrected with the type of body fit for whatever Kingdom we belong in. We will have that body for eternity. We will not die again to a different supposedly better body.

We know little about the Devil and his pre-mortal followers, but they will never have a physical body. The unrepentant mortal followers of the Devil will be Resurrected with a body, but it will not be a body with any Glory.

IF they would but repent they will be Resurrected to a Kingdom of Glory. However the SoP's will never repent, they will remain in Outer Darkness forever, because it is an act of their own will.

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Good question. Here's some interesting speculation...

"President Brigham Young has suggested that the ultimate punishment of the sons of perdition may be that they, having their spiritual bodies disorganized , must start over again must begin anew the long journey of existence , repeating the steps that they took in the eternities before the Great Council was held. That would be punishment, indeed! "They will be decomposed, both soul and body (body and spirit make up the soul) , and return to their native element. I do not say that they will be annihilated; but they will be disorganized and will be as if they had never been; while "we" live and retain our identity and contend against those principles which tend to death or dissolution" (Journal of Discourses, 7:57). "The clay that marred in the potter's hands was thrown back into the unprepared portion to be prepared over again" (Ibid., 2:124) (John A. Widtsoe , Evidences and Reconciliation's, page 213)

Now, that's really interesting. Hadn't heard that one, before. I would consider that as a possibility. If you mess up THAT badly, you have to go back to "GO". :)

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Good question. Here's some interesting speculation...

"President Brigham Young has suggested that the ultimate punishment of the sons of perdition may be that they, having their spiritual bodies disorganized , must start over again must begin anew the long journey of existence , repeating the steps that they took in the eternities before the Great Council was held. That would be punishment, indeed! "They will be decomposed, both soul and body (body and spirit make up the soul) , and return to their native element. I do not say that they will be annihilated; but they will be disorganized and will be as if they had never been; while "we" live and retain our identity and contend against those principles which tend to death or dissolution" (Journal of Discourses, 7:57). "The clay that marred in the potter's hands was thrown back into the unprepared portion to be prepared over again" (Ibid., 2:124) (John A. Widtsoe , Evidences and Reconciliation's, page 213)

Nice quote. I had heard about this concept from Orson Pratt, but didn't know it was also mentioned by BY.

Orson Pratt takes it to not only man, but to all forms of life. I'm paraphrasing some stuff I read on my mission, so I might be remembering wrong. But basically thinking of intelligences as the fundamental particles of everything and those intelligences have agency. As the intelligences are formed into a blade of grass, that blade of grass can fulfill the measure of it's creation and those intelligences "graduate" and combined with other onto a higher form of life, eventually ending in "man" who can become like God. If along that process the life form doesn't fulfill the measure of it's creation, it's it broken apart to it's fundamental particles of intelligences and it's starts over (never joining back up with those same intelligences, so it's is in essence a totally new being). A blade of grass can be broken apart back to intelligences, and so can a man.

Fun speculation.

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Brian 2.0:

I don't know as it was combined intelligences, or intelligences have always been. Those that had the potential to be added upon, not necessarily added intelligences, were and are. Will a blade of grass ever be a Child of God? I don't believe so. Will/have some of his Children rebel and work against him? Yes I believe that they do.

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I think Universalism is great, because if it is true. No matter how off base you are in your beliefs, you still get on the "good" list somewhere down the line.

I don't think it's the way things work though. I think there are some that want no part to do with Christ.

IMO, Annihilationism preserves the integrity of the situation and also presents God as merciful in some degree, to those who don't want a relationship with him and it is the view I hold.

... I am planning on writing a book in contrast to Bell's. I think I might title it,

If love doesn't win, God will Zap you into nothingness after your dead.

Pretty catchy huh?

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lol...I think you might want to continue working on that title, Mudcat. ;)

The thing is, if we have all of eternity to progress (as souls), it seems a lot more likely that "evenutally" we are all going to return to God. I think man wants to put too many restrictions and limitations on God and his ability to bring us all back to the fold. And, I really don't think that possibility limits agency, at all, because it's kind of like the old adage (in reverse), give a man enough rope and he'll hang himself. Give man enough time, and he'll eventually "get it". (Women, of course, get it the first time :D)

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If love doesn't win, God will Zap you into nothingness after your dead.

Pretty catchy huh?

I dunno... not sure it really catches the hellfire and brimstone attitude that your looking for... and the color doesn't go with your eyes.

Maybe, If Love doesn't win; you'll burn for Eternity while God Laughs :diablo:

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I think that Rob Bell is a closet Mormon. Evangelicals are right to be suspicious of him!

My wife and I just sent a copy of the book to my wife's mother, who hates all things Mormon. Since she hated the book "The Shack" we're assuming a similar reaction to "Love Wins".

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