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The Gospel Of Inclusion And Carlton Pearson


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Before you totally gave up on Christianity - Has anyone taken the time to read Bishop Carlton's material. He was very big in the evangelism world.

 

He says he is convinced that Jesus died to save the ENTIRE world regardless of color, creed, unbelief, etc..........................Just wondering? :shrug:

 

I know many will say - There's no Jesus Margee ------ but what about this 'gentler' doctrine of Jesus?

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It is called universalism but essentially is everything fundie w/o the hell bits. They still are pretty intolerant of gays and have a whole heap of other issues.

 

Carton Pearson lost almost his entire following b/c he dismissed hell.

 

W/o satan and hell, there is very little to live for. Other doctrines included are annihilation, soul sleep, partial hell for unbelievers to get us fried just right to enter zombieland aka heaven.

 

Universalism is the last stepping stone out of xianity, from someone that went there and wasted another two to three years of my life, I would caution against this.

 

I used to be the admin at tentmaker.org so I have a pretty good idea how these folk think.

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I have never heard of Bishop Carlton before. Here's a link to his website:

 

http://bishoppearson.com/

 

I'll take a look......

 

You know, I think I saw an interview of this guy on television, if it's the same man. The man I saw was the pastor of a large church. It was the usual Christian thing with heaven and hell and all of that. Then he believed that god spoke to him and told him that there was no hell. Once he announced this to his congregation, which he thought was good news, he lost everything and I think was forced out of the pastorate of that church. I lost track of him after that. Was that the same man as this guy?

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Universalism is all well and good but is it based on fact? No. Set aside all the issues with Christianity and the Bible and you still have the issue of the message the NT preaches. No one can come to the conclusion that it teaches universalism unless they;re looking for it in the text. In the end I'd rather believe in an unpleasant truth than a glorious lie.

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I like the idea of simply dying and being no more if you didn't "deserve" heaven. Why the need for eternal torture? It wouldn't be correctional, or serve ANY purpose whatsoever.

Jesus said "those who believe in me shall have everlasting life". He didn't say "those who believe in me shall have everlasting GOOD life and those who do not believe in me shall have everlasting TORTUROUS life".

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You guys have all touched on some salient points. However there is a sect withing their ranks that are predeterminist in that some even have the notion gawd set all in place when you would defecate and urinate amongst other things.

 

In their ranks, you also have calvinists, armenianists, YEC, OEC, literalists, futurists, preterists, tongue talkers, tongue deniers etc. All the shit you find in fundieland just with varying interpretations of hell either temporary or non existent, lake of fire for cleansing (just fried right to be a zombie cock sucking worshiper). I used to be a CU apologist and taught this shit, luckily it led me to atheism.

 

The CU circles and "great scholars" all have websites and "ministries" trying to convince the disillusioned that w/o hell gawd is not so bad after all. This unknowingly or willfully get folk to donate to their ministry so scam or not scam, I dunno as they are very sincere. Essentially they are all little bless me clubs and appeal a lot to emotions. They get flak from both us and the fundies as being apostate. All it boils down to is another flavor of koolaide.

 

The CU of the USA was a guy on the forum we had and there were many that opposed his "vision" to unite all the sects of universalists. I was on their mailing list and these conferences were very small in numbers. They believe they have the truth and they believe that only they are enlightened to understand scriptures - sound familiar?

 

Their resources and links to materials are excellent but is a slippery slope for any believer as if they really get the itch to explore even beyond their paradigms, you end up here where we are, unbelievers.

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I dabbled in this about 5 years ago and at that time - got great comfort from it. Now, that i look it over - - - :shrug: Here is a little information on the topic for those who are interested.

 

Carlton Pearson - Rejected over the last several years by mainstream Christian leadership, Bishop Carlton Pearson has been declared a modern-day heretic for questioning the teaching of Christian doctrine that promotes a loving God who would sentence billions of people to an eternal hell for not becoming Christian, a discussion which has come to be known as the Gospel of Inclusion that all are saved.

“Inclusion believes that all people will eventually be reunited with God. This … sets it apart from other Christian religions or denominations, which believe that only some people will be reunited with God …”

 

“Inclusion does believe in hell; but not the mythological hell of people burning in pits of fire and brimstone for all of eternity.”

 

“We reject the classical version of hell. … It is completely out of character with what we know about God. …[it] didn’t originate with Christianity or even Judaism, but with pagan religions … “

 

“He says :The entire Bible is about inclusion. … It is about an all-powerful God reaching out in love to the undeserving, sinful human race, not because of anything we have done but in spite of all we have done.”

 

 

Mr. Pearson still has an unshakable conviction in his controversial “gospel of inclusion” — the belief that everyone will go to heaven, regardless of his or her actions on earth. The high-profile pastor lost followers, his church building, money and prestige — especially among conservatives — after he started preaching a few years ago that the gates of heaven are open to everyone, even, theoretically, to Satan.

 

 

Mr. Pearson said he’s been buoyed by what he considers positive national press coverage of his travails. He’s been interviewed in recent weeks by National Geographic and Dateline NBC. His fall from grace has been chronicled in Christianity Today and National Catholic Reporter , and he absolutely gushed to members recently about a segment on National Public Radio’s This American Life.

 

Mr. Pearson said if his teachings make him unpopular in some quarters, so be it.

 

“My ministry will be inclusive, not exclusive,” he said. “I’m no longer preaching and living under that fear-based gospel.

 

Universalists in history include the important early Christian theologians Origen (who believed in hell, but also believed that everyone sent there escapes eventually) and Gregory of Nyssa.

 

The death of Christ made it possible for God to accept sinful man, and that he has, in fact, done so. Consequently, whatever separation there is between man and the benefits of God's grace is subjective in nature and exists only in man's mind and unregenerate spirit. The message man needs to hear then, is not that he simply has a suggested opportunity for salvation, but that through Christ he has, in fact, already been redeemed to God and that he may enjoy the blessing that are already his through Christ.

---Carlton Pearson,
Jesus: The Savior of the World
:shrug:

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Most of it sounds all fair and well, and although this is perhaps the best flavor of Christianity there is, there are still many problems not least of which is.

 

 

 

“He says :The entire Bible is about inclusion. … It is about an all-powerful God reaching out in love to the undeserving, sinful human race, not because of anything we have done but in spite of all we have done.”

 

What have we done to be "sinful and undeserving." Is it our own birth that makes us "sinful and undeserving".

 

 

It seems as if all flavors of Christianity expect us to apologize and grovel, just for being born a human being. Which is something none of us chose in the first place.

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I dabbled in Universalism when I was deconverting. I had heard of Carlton's change of beliefs back then. He was a popular TV preacher that gave up his status and wealth. He started believing in Universalism so he got rejected by everyone and lost his church. Then he started a new church that was much less fancy than the old one where he preached inclusion of 'evil' homosexuals. That went over real well with the other Christians.

 

Universalism is still a Christian doctrine, just not a popular one. You still believe Christianity is the only truth, and all other religions are false or at the very least inferior to yours.

 

If you're going to believe in fairy tales, at least that one has a happy ending for everyone.

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I have to say though, that if Christianity were true, this is by far the best version of it.

 

However, it still doesn't address the problems of suffering and evil, or why it is necessary in the first place.

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  • 2 months later...

When I was a Christian, I couldn't embrace the doctrine of a loving God torturing people forever and ever in hell. So I embraced the doctrine of Christian Universalism.

 

The problem is, once you stop believing in everlasing hell, your fear is gone... Then you realize that you don't dare discuss many things about Christianity because of your fear... Now you can think about everything, doubt everything...

 

This is what happened to me... After I was free from the fearsome doctrine of hell, I started thinking about many aspects of Christianity and understood that the doctrine of hell is one, but not the only problem of this religion. There are still many other problems that Christian Universalism cannot explain well.

 

1. Why is there evil and suffering after all? Christian Universalists are emotional people and they say that God is too loving to make an everlasting hell. Is God too loving to create a world without evil? If not, why is there evil in the world?

 

2. What about all these stories in the Bible that show God of the Old testament as a bloodthirsty and unpleasant Character? Christian Universalists assume that God is too-loving to create hell, but they don't show proof that God is indeed all-loving and the Biblical deity is all-loving.

 

3. What about Satan? Will he be saved or not? If God is too loving, he should also forgive the devil!

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Carleton Pearson was my pastor during my university days.

 

While the idea of Universalism is a nice warm fuzzy one compared to traditional dogma, there is a dilemma if you consider the Bible to be the inerrant word of God. Christ himself says repeatedly that the only way to God is through him and that those who do not believe and embrace that fact will perish. That doesn't sound like everyone is going to Heaven to me. Even with the strange explanation given to me by a fundy*,

 

Of course, that's the problem with the Bible full stop – it is full of dilemma: dilemma of contradiction, dilemma of inaccuracy, dilemma of interpretation, dilemma of literalness. Any way you slice it, with brain turned on and fear of questioning turned off, even with Universalism to soften the blow, that book has got to be the worst how-to manual ever written.

 

 

 

 

 

* According to the fundy, unbelievers die two deaths; one of body and one of spirit/soul. (This is what Jesus meant by "perish" he says.) It is only after the spirit/soul dies that whatever it is that is left is condemned to burn in hell for eternity. When I asked him what exactly was it that was left after both body and soul/spirit died, he was unable to answer—having found himself suddenly and urgently needed elsewhere.

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When I was a Christian, I couldn't embrace the doctrine of a loving God torturing people forever and ever in hell. So I embraced the doctrine of Christian Universalism.

 

The problem is, once you stop believing in everlasing hell, your fear is gone... Then you realize that you don't dare discuss many things about Christianity because of your fear... Now you can think about everything, doubt everything...

 

This is what happened to me... After I was free from the fearsome doctrine of hell, I started thinking about many aspects of Christianity and understood that the doctrine of hell is one, but not the only problem of this religion. There are still many other problems that Christian Universalism cannot explain well.

 

1. Why is there evil and suffering after all? Christian Universalists are emotional people and they say that God is too loving to make an everlasting hell. Is God too loving to create a world without evil? If not, why is there evil in the world?

 

2. What about all these stories in the Bible that show God of the Old testament as a bloodthirsty and unpleasant Character? Christian Universalists assume that God is too-loving to create hell, but they don't show proof that God is indeed all-loving and the Biblical deity is all-loving.

 

3. What about Satan? Will he be saved or not? If God is too loving, he should also forgive the devil!

 

Yes, my friend, this would be my dilemma! I would love to find a version of god, but the issue of invisible and suffering are still 2 of my biggest dilemmas. Where is 'he'?, and why the suffering? I still consider myself agnostic, but very soon will say that word.......AAAAA...theeeee....ist.....:twitch:

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Carleton Pearson was my pastor during my university days.

 

While the idea of Universalism is a nice warm fuzzy one compared to traditional dogma, there is a dilemma if you consider the Bible to be the inerrant word of God. Christ himself says repeatedly that the only way to God is through him and that those who do not believe and embrace that fact will perish. That doesn't sound like everyone is going to Heaven to me. Even with the strange explanation given to me by a fundy*,

 

Of course, that's the problem with the Bible full stop – it is full of dilemma: dilemma of contradiction, dilemma of inaccuracy, dilemma of interpretation, dilemma of literalness. Any way you slice it, with brain turned on and fear of questioning turned off, even with Universalism to soften the blow, that book has got to be the worst how-to manual ever written.

 

 

 

 

* According to the fundy, unbelievers die two deaths; one of body and one of spirit/soul. (This is what Jesus meant by "perish" he says.) It is only after the spirit/soul dies that whatever it is that is left is condemned to burn in hell for eternity. When I asked him what exactly was it that was left after both body and soul/spirit died, he was unable to answer—having found himself suddenly and urgently needed elsewhere.

 

I agree with your above statements!

 

We were always told: ''every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus christ is lord''.

This is where one might get their 'second chance' at salvation???????:shrug:

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Carleton Pearson was my pastor during my university days.

 

While the idea of Universalism is a nice warm fuzzy one compared to traditional dogma, there is a dilemma if you consider the Bible to be the inerrant word of God.

 

I think that accepting Christian Universalism means automatically that you stop believing in the Bible as inerrant word of God. Christian Universalists say that "perish" (greek apollumi) doesn't mean literal death, but separation of God, and they also insist that the word hell is a mistranslation of four words - sheol, hades, gehenna and tartarus.

 

As soon as you accept that your own Bible is mistranslated, this fact alone means it's not inerrant.

 

Christ himself says repeatedly that the only way to God is through him and that those who do not believe and embrace that fact will perish. That doesn't sound like everyone is going to Heaven to me. Even with the strange explanation given to me by a fundy*,

 

That's correct. And Christ himself claimed that we should follow the narrow path. But there are also verses in the Bible according to which Jesus will draw every person to himself and all knees shaw bow. This, looked as a whole, means Universal Reconciliation. There are Universalists who say that the Revelation of John is unbiblical, it was included in the Bible too late after much discussion, but most of those who accept Revelation will agree that Revelation is not the end of the story, but Corinthians

 

Of course, that's the problem with the Bible full stop – it is full of dilemma: dilemma of contradiction, dilemma of inaccuracy, dilemma of interpretation, dilemma of literalness. Any way you slice it, with brain turned on and fear of questioning turned off, even with Universalism to soften the blow, that book has got to be the worst how-to manual ever written.

 

This is true, of course... It's full of dilemma and contradiction, but if you want to believe in a deity, there's no need to base your beliefs on the Bible alone.

 

I don't think that all Universalists will agree with me, but this is my opinion. And I'm not a fundie.

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