Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"
Adam was a great man but he plunged the world into rebellion against God through sin. Sin brought death, not only the death that we call “sleep,” but the real thing--the total eternal end of life, what the Bible describes as “the second death.”
The Good News of the gospel declares that a “last Adam” or second Adam has entered our dark, doomed world, and has taken over the headship of the human race (1 Cor. 15:45). As we are all by nature “in Adam” with a verdict of condemnation hanging over our heads, so now “in Christ” we have a verdict of acquittal pronounced over us. Instead of a sentence of death, we have a sentence of life!
But all through the ages during these two millennia there have been some dear souls who thought that this Good News means that everybody will be saved eternally at last; this is known as “Universalism.” But the Bible does not teach Universalism.
God would like for “all men” to be saved eternally (1 Tim. 2:3-6). He takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked (Ezek. 18:23). In fact, their final ruin is terribly painful for Him to have to endure (cf. Rev. 8:1). Even today He is in agony when human beings, the creation of His love, have to endure it (Isa. 63:9). He repented in behalf of humans who repent because He became “the Lamb of God” and was baptized in John the Baptist’s baptism of repentance (Matt. 3:11).
When humans choose irrevocably to reject the message of His much more abounding grace, they bring upon themselves the final ruin of the death that is the inevitable result of sin. To His great pain of heart, those who choose at last to be lost are in number “as the sand of the sea” (Rev. 20:8).
The Bible does not teach the popular doctrine that God Himself has predestined them to be lost while He predestines other fortunate ones to be saved; the Bible is clear as sunlight--He predestines all to be saved; and Christ gave His blood for “all.” He will save all who do not frustrate or reject Him.
But those in number “as the sand of the sea” have at last chosen to “frustrate the grace of God” (cf. Gal. 2:21, KJV), down to the last bitter end. Along with life and liberty and salvation the dear Lord has given us all the freedom of choice; all the angels in heaven cannot interfere with that or force us either way. Today, let us choose life!
--Robert J. Wieland
From the "Dial Daily Bread" Archive: April 13, 2007.
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