Urgency of men and women repenting and believing now

Posted: March 25, 2011 by doulos tou Theou in Uncategorized

Sinclair Ferguson teaching on Universalism and eternal punishment

Here he speaks of  criticisms of  this statement:

“It would be impossible for a God of love to tolerate men and women being sent to hell. It would be the great emblem of his failure,” as MacDonald and others have maintained, “and he simply won’t tolerate lost souls.”

he then offers his criticisms of such statements, read or listen to the whole talk here

5) Fifthly, if I may argue in an ad hominem manner—and I mean this seriously and not cynically or in any sense merely as a put-down—it is one of the most extraordinary things in the world that, to a man, universalists are semi-Pelagian in their views. But suddenly, after death, everything becomes Calvinistic. The love of God is overwhelming. The love of God is irresistible. The love of God cannot be stopped.

But you see the principle of the New Testament is that God does not change because we die. His love is already overwhelming, irresistible. There is no more love of God to be demonstrated, beloved, than in the work of our Savior on the cross and the zealous pursuit of his efficacious work in the hearts of men and women by the power of the Holy Spirit. There is nothing more that God can do; there is no more love he can demonstrate; there is no more irresistible grace than the grace which effects our salvation here and now.

6) And sixthly, there is the homiletical argument that, inevitably, whenever universalism is espoused, the urgency and energy of New Testament preaching is dissipated. I tell you, it is a very unusual thing to hear a Barthian say, “I beseech you, be reconciled to God.” And it is an even rarer thing to hear a card-carrying, genuine-article universalist publicly espousing the doctrine of universalism with tears in his eyes, to say, “I beg you; lay down your arms; be reconciled to God.”

The principle here is that if the gospel that is proclaimed does not produce the fruit of that gospel that is visible in the New Testament, the gospel that is proclaimed cannot be the New Testament gospel. And the very reason for the urgency of the apostolic ministry and the zeal in our Lord’s heart that was to consume him was because of the sense of the urgency of men and women repenting and believing now, or else they would be lost forever.

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