Tuesday, May 5, 2015


RESTORATIONISM (The Worst of the Views)

Introduction - More in Following Articles

A good text and subject for sermon.
Ezek. 13:22 A.V. -- Will Hell ever be emptied into Heaven? Not ever
"Because with lies ye have made the heart of the righteous sad, whom I have not made sad; and strengthened the hands of the wicked, that he should not return from his wicked way, by promising him life:"

This theory exists under different names: Universalism, Reconciliationism, Restorationism, etc.
Different shades of opinion:
1. Punishment on earth - Heaven at death.
2. No hell but the grave (Russellites – Jehovah Witness) - at Resurrection all may enter heaven. Mixture of Restorationism; Second probation and Annihilationism.
3. A real hell-punishment - Heaven at last.
4. Only a portion of wicked finally restored.
5. All restored - even Satan and demons.

But all differing views can be reduced to one common proposition: Namely, there is hope for the wicked beyond the grave. Someday the doors of hell will open and all or some of its occupants will be received into heaven. Cf. Tennyson's "Larger Hope"

History of the "larger Hope" - See Art. (Acts 3:21) "Apocatastasis," Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia Vol. I., p. 210

Early Church - Alexandrian School (200), Clement and Origen (Father of the Idea in the early church)
Contra - Jerome and Augustine (400)
Middle Ages - Some mystics, Tauler (1300)
Contra - Eckhart (1300)
Reformation - A few Anabaptists (1500)
Contra - Luther
Modern Times - Bengel? Schleiermacher (1800)
Modern Universalist church (1803)
Today many Protestant leaders. Cf. Van Dyke Remedial
Even G. C. Morgan slipped over the line in World War I

  • Factors in Recent Growth
Modern critical attitude toward Bible -- i.e. they think Bible not infallible.
Two World Wars made fertile soil.

  • Restorationism has a strong fascination - why?
Because it is the thing every man would like to believe. Wishful thinking.

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