Traditional Salvation Violates God’s Justice

Bociferous

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[/SIZE]The doctrines of Annihilationism and eternal punishment both violate the perfection of God’s justice. Only the allegorical approach to the salvation of all in the Bible is able to resolve these violations.

The story of God’s discussion with Abraham on the road to Damascus (Gen 18) is a metaphor that, combined with Sodom’s destruction (Gen 19), identifies certain spiritual principles. Briefly, the story contains these elements:
1. Abraham challenges God by asking Him if He would destroy Sodom if only a few righteous existed there. God answered that He would not. (Gen 18:17-33)
2. God then proceeds to remove righteous Lot and family from Sodom before destroying it. (Gen 19:1-24)

In this metaphor—a symbolic depiction of God’s work in human spirit or the soul—God establishes at minimum the principles that,
A. He will not destroy a whole (Sodom) in which any good exists;
B. The soul exists in a “one and many” organization or multiplicity of “value elements”. [Analogical to but not to be confused with elements of substance.]

Salvation is revealed to be the removal and destruction of the false or bad elements of the soul (as shown in the Gen 18-19 passages) and their restoration or resurrection to a good or true state (as shown elsewhere in Scripture).

THE PROBLEM

Abraham identifies the logical problem in Gen 18:25: "Far be it from Thee to do such a thing, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous and the wicked are treated alike. Far be it from Thee! Shall not the Judge of all the earth deal justly?"(NASB)

God, if He is the God of the Bible, is necessarily perfect in all His attributes—love, justice, wisdom, etc. Abraham pointed out that the destruction of any good violates the perfection of His justice. God then confirms Abraham’s point by separating good (righteous) parts from bad before destroying the latter.

Both Annihilationism and eternal punishment violate the perfection of God’s justice, the former by destroying good and the latter by eternal separation and punishment of wholes (persons) in whom at least some good arguably still exists.

THE SOLUTION

In separation of good and bad parts from a whole, God shows the first of the dual aspect [death and resurrection] of Christian salvation and reveals that because all are enlightened (Jn 1:9) destroying wicked components from human essence and restoring them to a wholly true or righteous state [and thus restoration of the whole] is His plan and work of salvation in every human being. Using the Gen 18-19 passages as a supervising metaphor establishing these principles, there are dozens of other semantically unified metaphors from both Testaments that form a systematic support. This view is unavailable to a literal understanding of the Bible.

I’ve posted this elsewhere. There’ve been no adequate refutations to date.

Questions, comments?
 

jamie

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Everyone will have an opportunity for salvation by grace through Jesus Christ. Those who reject him will die the second death.

Eternal judgment is one of the basic doctrinal principles of Christianity.

...of the doctrine of baptisms, of laying on of hands, of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment. (Hebrews 6:2)​
 

Nick M

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All are condemned because of one. Even those who have not sinned like the one. And because God is just, the death penalty is at the heart of our gospel. We can't remove some sin. All of it needs to go.
 

Bociferous

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Eternal judgment is one of the basic doctrinal principles of Christianity.

...of the doctrine of baptisms, of laying on of hands, of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment. (Hebrews 6:2)​
Yes, eternal judgment is decreed by God. I take the position that the literal applies eternality to the wrong place. Would you care to take a shot at the logical problem posed in the op?
 

Bociferous

New member
All are condemned because of one.
True. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all shall be made alive.

Even those who have not sinned like the one. And because God is just, the death penalty is at the heart of our gospel.
I agree. But the literal doesn't take us far enough into the truth. Jesus died not so we don't pay the penalty of death for our sins...He died that when we kill ourselves with our sin He lovingly resurrects us to life. The death we suffer is both spiritual and physical, the resurrection by virtue of the atonement is spiritual.

We can't remove some sin.
I agree, we cannot. But God can.

All of it needs to go.
Again, agreed. And it will.

Do you have a solution for the logical problem posed in the op?
 

jamie

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THE PROBLEM

Abraham identifies the logical problem in Gen 18:25: "Far be it from Thee to do such a thing, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous and the wicked are treated alike. Far be it from Thee! Shall not the Judge of all the earth deal justly?"(NASB)

God, if He is the God of the Bible, is necessarily perfect in all His attributes—love, justice, wisdom, etc. Abraham pointed out that the destruction of any good violates the perfection of His justice. God then confirms Abraham’s point by separating good (righteous) parts from bad before destroying the latter.

We know there is none good of themselves. It would not be love, justice or wisdom to grant on-going life to a person opposed to love, justice, wisdom, the person would be miserable. Eternal death is the most merciful.
 

genuineoriginal

New member
Both Annihilationism and eternal punishment violate the perfection of God’s justice, the former by destroying good and the latter by eternal separation and punishment of wholes (persons) in whom at least some good arguably still exists.

In separation of good and bad parts from a whole, God shows the first of the dual aspect [death and resurrection] of Christian salvation and reveals that because all are enlightened (Jn 1:9) destroying wicked components from human essence and restoring them to a wholly true or righteous state [and thus restoration of the whole] is His plan and work of salvation in every human being. Using the Gen 18-19 passages as a supervising metaphor establishing these principles, there are dozens of other semantically unified metaphors from both Testaments that form a systematic support. This view is unavailable to a literal understanding of the Bible.
You are assuming that an individual person can be divided up into righteous people and wicked people the way that a population of people can be divided.

That is a false assumption.

The Bible shows that justice is based on the assumption that the entire person receives punishment for the sin of the person, not a piece of the person receiving punishment for the sin.

The way God deals with an individual person is on whether they are choosing to be righteous and turning away from wickedness or choosing to be wicked and turning away from righteousness.

Ezekiel 18:20-28
20 The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.
21 But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die.
22 All his transgressions that he hath committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live.
23 Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord God: and not that he should return from his ways, and live?
24 But when the righteous turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and doeth according to all the abominations that the wicked man doeth, shall he live? All his righteousness that he hath done shall not be mentioned: in his trespass that he hath trespassed, and in his sin that he hath sinned, in them shall he die.
25 Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel; Is not my way equal? are not your ways unequal?
26 When a righteous man turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and dieth in them; for his iniquity that he hath done shall he die.
27 Again, when the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive.
28 Because he considereth, and turneth away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die.​


You, like the house of Israel in these verses, are claiming that God's ways are not fair ("are not your ways unequal?").
God stated that His justice is very fair, since He only looks on whether a person chooses to turn away from righteousness or a person chooses to turn away from wickedness.
 

Bociferous

New member
We know there is none good of themselves. It would not be love, justice or wisdom to grant on-going life to a person opposed to love, justice, wisdom, the person would be miserable. Eternal death is the most merciful.
This is the popular view in much of Christianity, but I don't think the premise that we are free agents in the sense of autonomy to choose between right and wrong is correct. The position I find supported by Scripture is that we are captive, to varying degrees, to the propensity to sin by the stain of falsity in our spirit. To the extent we're set free, we're able to choose truth. To the extent our soul is darkened, we choose unrighteousness, as per Rom 8:5-6 and John 3:19-21 for example.

This idea develops from what was posted in the op, but the short version is that as elemental badness is removed from spirit and one is restored to a higher truth state the disposition toward sin is lessened, toward righteousness is increased. God thus frees the soul progressively and fragmentally to the ability to choose what would be chosen freely and naturally were it not hindered from doing so by the stain in spirit. (We call this sanctification, but it is identical to salvation.)
 

Bociferous

New member
You are assuming that an individual person can be divided up into righteous people and wicked people the way that a population of people can be divided.

That is a false assumption.
Thanks for sharing your opinion GE, but this does nothing to refute the points made in the op.

You, like the house of Israel in these verses, are claiming that God's ways are not fair ("are not your ways unequal?").
God stated that His justice is very fair, since He only looks on whether a person chooses to turn away from righteousness or a person chooses to turn away from wickedness.
Again, thanks for the opinion. I claim only an interpretation of those passages presented in the op. Would you care to take a stab at presenting evidence for why you think what was presented is wrong?
 

genuineoriginal

New member
Thanks for sharing your opinion GE, but this does nothing to refute the points made in the op.
Please point out the points in the OP that you believe are valid, since I am not able to find them.

Again, thanks for the opinion. I claim only an interpretation of those passages presented in the op.
I believe I have shown that you are misinterpreting those passages by posting the passages that show the correct way to interpret them.

Would you care to take a stab at presenting evidence for why you think what was presented is wrong?
I presented as much evidence showing why your misinterpretation of God's justice is wrong as you did.

I could post the death penalty verses, if you would like, which show that the entire person is punished for a single sin.
How much more evidence will it take to convince you that people are not split into good and bad parts?
 

Bociferous

New member
I presented as much evidence showing why your misinterpretation of God's justice is wrong as you did.
The op presents a logical problem. One doesn't refute a logical problem with personal theology. Nothing you posted refutes the logical problem presented in the op. Ezek 18 accords perfectly with the theology that follows from the op, but from a different interpretive perspective. It isn't the purpose of the op to discuss why, how or in what ways my theology interprets Ezek 18 at this point.

Please point out the points in the OP that you believe are valid, since I am not able to find them.
Please reread the op, first dismissing your preconceived doctrines. I believe I posed the logical problem clearly. If you still don't understand the problem, let me know and I'll try to elaborate it further. Thanks.
 

genuineoriginal

New member
The op presents a logical problem. One doesn't refute a logical problem with personal theology. Nothing you posted refutes the logical problem presented in the op. Ezek 18 accords perfectly with the theology that follows from the op, but from a different interpretive perspective. It isn't the purpose of the op to discuss why, how or in what ways my theology interprets Ezek 18 at this point.


Please reread the op, first dismissing your preconceived doctrines. I believe I posed the logical problem clearly. If you still don't understand the problem, let me know and I'll try to elaborate it further. Thanks.

I see your problem.

You think God's justice can be redefined with a logic problem.

That is a lousy hermeneutic method for creating a theology.

Peter described what happens when you treat scripture that way.


2 Peter 3:16
16 As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.​


According to the Bible as a whole (not some verses taken out of the Bible for use in a logic problem), a person is either considered as wicked or as righteous before God, and justice is against a whole person for being wicked.

This invalidates your entire logic problem, and puts you in the category of the wicked that refuse to accept God's definition of justice.
 

genuineoriginal

New member
I’ve posted this elsewhere. There’ve been no adequate refutations to date.
You should have defined what you will consider to be an "adequate" refutation, and specifically noted that this is merely a logic problem that has nothing to do with theology or Biblical hermeneutics.
 

Hawkins

Active member
That actually lies the difference between God and man.

Abraham is a man (a human), so he counts physical bodies as human lives. God on the other hand, counts souls. That's why He decided to destroy the 2 cities, as He can choose not to show mercy to the 2 cities where there won't be any souls to be harvested.

The same applies to Noah's situation. He decided to destroy all mankind by the same token of reasoning.


However He can also show mercy or a change of mind if requested by someone like Abraham to show mercy to human lives (in terms of man). He will even actively do so when in the end, people in the cities will choose to repent. That's how He choose to show mercy in the case of Jonah, such that those who will repent in the end will thus be shown openly and to be saved openly.
 

Samie

New member
[/SIZE]. . .

THE SOLUTION

In separation of good and bad parts from a whole, God shows the first of the dual aspect [death and resurrection] of Christian salvation and reveals that because all are enlightened (Jn 1:9) destroying wicked components from human essence and restoring them to a wholly true or righteous state [and thus restoration of the whole] is His plan and work of salvation in every human being. Using the Gen 18-19 passages as a supervising metaphor establishing these principles, there are dozens of other semantically unified metaphors from both Testaments that form a systematic support. This view is unavailable to a literal understanding of the Bible.

I’ve posted this elsewhere. There’ve been no adequate refutations to date.

Questions, comments?
The solution had been done; you could have just not noticed it.

God, through Christ, has already fully restored us all to a wholly true or righteous state. It was done ON THE CROSS by God through His Son, the Lamb of God that took away the sin of the world. That death on the cross was foreshadowed by the death of an animal that same day Adam sinned, and by all the animal sacrifices in the old covenant. No wonder Christ is called the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

On the cross, God fashioned humanity (Jews & Gentiles) into the Body of His Son. When the Head died, the Body died with Him, and we all were forgiven from all sins, justified, sanctified and made perfect. When He - the Head - resurrected, we - the Body - were made alive TOGETHER with Him, born again into a living hope of life eternal. God's fashioning us into the Body of His Son on the cross, made us all parts of His Body. We are all attached to Him. We are all in Christ.

As a body part can NOT of its own detach itself from the body, we can NOT possibly detach ourselves from being parts of His Body. UNLESS Christ Himself does so. And it is done only AFTER a person dies. If God so judges a man as having been overcome of evil in his lifetime, instead of overcoming evil with good, then his name will be blotted out from the book of life, effectively removed from membership in the family of God, forever detached from being part of the Body of Christ. Hence, the Body of Christ remains perfect, without spot nor wrinkle nor blemish.

When Christ comes again, all whose names remain written in the book of life will be rewarded with life eternal and ushered to the heavenly mansions to live with Him throughout all eternity. All others will be made to suffer the wrath of God and finally thrown into the lake of fire, the second death.

(Scriptural references will be provided upon request.)
 

Nick M

Black Rifles Matter
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I agree. But the literal doesn't take us far enough into the truth
.

Here is what Paul says to you adding to his gospel, because you think it isn't far enough.

Galatians 1

8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.


Jesus died not so we don't pay the penalty of death for our sins

1 Corinthians 15

3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures

Romans 5

18 Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life.


...He died that when we kill ourselves with our sin He lovingly resurrects us to life. The death we suffer is both spiritual and physical, the resurrection by virtue of the atonement is spiritual.

Made up.
 

jamie

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This is the popular view in much of Christianity, but I don't think the premise that we are free agents in the sense of autonomy to choose between right and wrong is correct.

Are we free agents in the sense of autonomy to choose between right and wrong with regard to being held accountable for what we say and do?

So speak and so do as those who will be judged by the law of liberty. (James 2:12)​
 

Nick M

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Since the opening poster does not believe God and his Bible, I will give an explanation. Justice is shown as woman holding a scale while blindfolded. The scale has to balance. What can balance sin? Sin being singular, a state of being. And all the sins committed by those in sin. How do you balance the scale of justice? What can counter all of that weight?

Only one thing. God himself.
 

Bociferous

New member
I see your problem.

You think God's justice can be redefined with a logic problem.

That is a lousy hermeneutic method for creating a theology.
And I see your problem. You have little idea how to conduct a rational discussion. Despite your contemptuous tone and insults I’ll try to explain how you might respond appropriately.

From Wikipedia
Christian theology – enterprise to construct a coherent system of Christian belief and practice based primarily upon the texts of theOld Testament and the New Testament as well as the historic traditions of the faithful. Christian theologians use biblical exegesis,rational analysis, and argument to clarify, examine, understand, explicate, critique, defend or promote Christianity. Theology might be undertaken to help the theologian better understand Christian tenets, make comparisons between Christianity and other traditions, defend Christianity against objections and criticism, facilitate reforms in the Christian church, assist in the propagationof Christianity, draw on the resources of the Christian tradition to address some present situation or need, or for a variety of other reasons.

Every Christian uses—or should use—reason to aid in formulating his or her personal theology. I’ve been doing this long enough to know that if Iposted a logical formula whose conclusion agrees with your theology you would be all up in there high-fiving and backslapping me, congratulating me on my wonderful use of logic.

The op suggests an unorthodox interpretive method. Traditionally, symbolic interpretations have been roughly limited to one or two or at most a few connected passages. The champions of grammatical-historical literalism correctly deem such interpretations to be inadequate because they form no coherent system and can’t be properly tested. Modern literalism has become closed-minded, however. Her champions now claim that no allegorical interpretation of the Bible is possible, that all metaphors and symbols outside the obvious ones in the Bible land in the realm of subjective imagination. The problem with this is that Literalism’s advocates have closed their (and their adherents) minds to even the possibility that an allegorical interpretation can be truthful or legitimate.

Instead of closing their minds, the question literalists should be asking is, “What standards might there be to test the authenticity of an allegorical interpretation of the Bible?” The answer is, the same standards that should be used (but rarely are any more) to test the authority of the literal interpretation of the Bible: accepted truth criteria. An interpretive scheme should be able to be critically examined and warrant either granted or denied commensurate with the degree to which truth criteria are satisfied or substandard.

What this means is that interpretive scheme “A” cannot be judged by interpretive scheme “B” because interpretive schemes are not identical to truth. They are interpretations. “A” may be either better (is non-contradictory, resolves more tensions, is coherent, etc.) or worse (unable to resolve tensions, is incoherent, lacks congruity, etc.) than “B”, but the truthfulness of either "A" nor "B" can’t be determined by the other. We have to appeal to a higher standard capable of properly judging both.

What was posted in the op deserves, in the interest of intellectually honest discourse, to be judged on the merits of its ability or lack thereof to present at minimum,
1. a proper metaphoric structure, and,
2. an appropriately logical problem [Abraham’s concern] and God’s resolution [separation of righteous and unrighteous elements prior to destruction of the latter].

You should have defined what you will consider to be an "adequate" refutation, and specifically noted that this is merely a logic problem that has nothing to do with theology or Biblical hermeneutics.
First, most people know intuitively what an adequate refutation is. If you don’t you can ask someone to instruct you. Second, from what I’ve seen so far you’re probably not equipped to determine whether something posted is appropriate to theology or hermeneutics.

Now, if you’re willing to play nice and be honest, let’s discuss. If not, play somewhere else or alone, please.
 
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