As I study this growing movement of Universalism and how it is infecting the Christian Church in America, there are a couple subtle, but important distinctions we must understand when confronting this movement of apostasy.
First, the character and nature of God. Universalists will often state that “God is love.” Well, that is accurate, but incomplete. First and foremost, God is a god of justice. His perfect nature cannot tolerate sin and evil, nor can he tolerate anyone trying to change his stated nature to fit into their desires. His perfect judgment demands that man come to him in a holy state—and that can only be accomplished by the sacrifice of His Son, Jesus, and our strong faith in Him.
A second way Christian Universalists misrepresent God is by saying things like “A loving God would never condemn anyone to hell.” This in spite of several biblical teachings where Jesus clearly indicated that hell is a real, permanent place for those who reject Jesus as the Son of God. Which leads me to point three we must remember: Universalists, while throwing around terms like “christ” and “christ-consciousness”, misstate who Jesus is. They will often refer to him as someone “who God was in” but they usually fall short of recognizing that Jesus IS God—not a vessel for him. By doing this they allow themselves leeway to accent or discount various teachings of Jesus to fit their agenda.
Lastly, it is important to understand a difference in how “children of God” is represented. Universalists will often state that we are all God’s children. But according to the bible, we are all God’s creation—and we only attain status as his children when we place our complete faith in Jesus Christ.
Now it’s one thing for the world to believe in universalism—it’s quite another for Christians to accept these false teachings. Yet teachers like Rob Bell and Brian McLaren sure seem to accept universalism in their teachings and writings. These men, along with people like Tony Campolo and Red letter Christians are having a deep influence on our youth in Christian youth groups—so we better wake up and see where our youth are being led.
Two weeks ago, I received a call from a mother in our area who told me her son came home with a book that his youth pastor gave to all their church youth to read and study—it was a book written by Shaine Claibourne and Jim Wallis titled “The Irresistible Revolution”. Sadly this represents what many of our youth groups have been relegated to—studying the writings of man that fit an unbiblical social justice movement instead of studying the Word of God, our Father and Creator.
As usual, we as Christians have a choice. We can continue to stick our heads in the sand and watch as many of our churches are hijacked by universalists and social justice proponents—or we can fight to purify our churches and return them to what they were meant to be: a community of strong believers, edifying and challenging one another to pursue holiness in this life.
The optimist in me wants to believe that the church has what it takes to stand up and fight for the purity and truth of God’s Word; but the realist in me fears that the horse is already out of the barn, and the church in America has started down an irreversible path that is worried more about accommodating culture than it is in standing up for the truth. No doubt there are still churches out there not giving in to relativism and the wave of false teachings everywhere—but I fear as we move forward those churches will be more and more in the minority. I hope and pray that I am wrong. I pray every day that God will call and build up Watchmen in every church with the courage to challenge our church leaders when they stray from the bible as truth. Watchmen who love the church and its leaders so much that they are willing to risk their reputations to point out in love how we are straying from God as a church.
As Jesus warned, deception would be so great in these final days that even the elect would be deceived if possible. Well, the great deception has begun—time for our churches and their leaders to choose who they will follow—the ways of man—or God!
- Tolerance and the price we’re paying (standupforthetruth.com)
- Opinions and Truth (standupforthetruth.com)
- The Train Is Coming At High Speed (standupforthetruth.com)
- Causing Little Ones To Stumble? (standupforthetruth.com)
- Is the Emergent Church movement dead (or dying)? (standupforthetruth.com)
- Civil War Within the Church (standupforthetruth.com)
- Time For The Church To Wake Up! (standupforthetruth.com)
- Spotting counterfeit truth (standupforthetruth.com)
- Wake Up Church! (standupforthetruth.com)