The New Today

Commentary

Why I believe God will eventually save all

A controversial religious paper from the pen of convicted Maurice Bishop assassinator, Major Leon “Bogo” Cornwall has caused a stir among religious clerics.

Cornwall, a former Methodist preacher, is advocating that God will “Save All” which has angered many religious preachers who over the centuries have been telling their congregations that some will go to heaven but the evil ones and sinners will end up in Hell.

One Grenadian Pastor has condemned the Leon “Bogo” Cornwall doctrine as advocating that no one will go to Hell which has been mentioned 165 times in the Bible.

Heaven has been described in the Bible as the dwelling place of God in 2 Chronicles 30: 27 where Jesus has gone to prepare a place for those who love him (John 14:2) while Hell was created for “the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41.”

Cornwall is known to have quit the Methodist Church to join forces with Pastor Stanford Simon at his Baptist Church in Springs to preach the Gospel of the Lord.

However, there are reports that he is no longer at the church where it is believed that he had penned the controversial religious paper that “no one will go to Hell” as God will save all.

As a public service, THE NEW TODAY has decided to serialise the controversial Leon “Bogo” Cornwall religious edict:

Two Fundamental Issues
At the heart of the belief in the salvation of all is the issue of God. What kind of God is God? Is God unconditionally and all-embracingly lovingly or is He not? Is God the Almighty sovereign power of the universe or is He not? Is God all-knowing and all-wise or is He not?

On the basis of scripture, one who believes in the salvation of all will answer these questions in the affirmative. Someone who does not accept and believe in the salvation of all might still answer affirmatively. But the implication of such affirmative answers has to be the salvation of all.

A God who loves to that extent, and has that kind of power, knowledge and wisdom will save all that He created. In other words, such a God will not knowingly create what He knows He can never ever save.

The second issue is whether or not evil is eternal. And if evil is eternal, on what basis is it so?

One who believes in the salvation of all would say that evil is not eternal. To be eternal, there must be no beginning nor end. But evil never always existed. It is not co-eternal with God. There was a beginning to evil. Secondly, at the end (eschaton), all will joyfully submit to God, praise and glorify Him.

This is scriptural. “Therefore, God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow (kampse), of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, 11 and that every tongue should confess (exomologesetai) that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2: 9 – 11).

This joyful glorification of God removes the basis for evil. In the end, there will be no hostility anywhere towards God. Isn’t that telling?

The Greek word exomologesetai (from exomologeo), used in the Philippians passage, indicates whole-hearted agreement and open declaration. And when coupled with the bowing of the knee, it speaks of worshipful, joyful praise and thanksgiving. This is why this ending is to the glory of God the Father. It is not about forcing anyone to knell and confess against their will, as has been interpreted by those who do not believe in the salvation of all.

Salvation of All Shows Forth the True Greatness of God
I deliberately put upfront these two critical issues to show that when the matter of the eventual salvation of all is calmly considered one can see that it holds God in the highest esteem and it is the ultimate display of His glory. It says that God is able to save all and has saved all.

There was nothing that could have prevented Him from doing so. It says that God’s victory is a total and complete victory according to the counsel of His loving will and method. As the apostle Paul wrote, God “works all things according to the counsel of His will” (Ephesians 1: 11). And if God’s will is to save all, would He not work things out in accordance with that will?

The belief that some will be saved and the rest damned forever gives us a God who either does not want to save all (Calvinism) or cannot save all (Arminianism). But Calvinism and Arminianism are rejected by scripture itself.

Calvinism: “For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2: 3 – 4).

“The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward [c]us, not willing (boulomenos) that any should perish but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3: 9).

Arminianism: When His disciples heard it, they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?” 26 But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19: 25 – 26).

“Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is there anything too hard for Me?” (Jeremiah 32: 27).

If we take these and other scripture passages seriously, it must mean that if God wants to save all, He can and will save all. Because God is truly great!

Four Indisputable Biblical Truths
What cannot be disputed by anyone who reads the Bible are the following:

God created all human beings and when God saw all that He created, He declared the whole creation as being very good.

Through Adam, sin entered the world and death entered through sin, spreading to all human beings, because all sinned.

God desires the salvation of all human beings.
Jesus Christ came from God as the Saviour of all human beings and when He was crucified on the Cross, He declared “It is finished”.

The above four (4) points are plainly seen in Scripture without any need for interpretation. No one can dispute all or any of the four (4) points. Interestingly, the four points are concerned with all without exception.

God created all. All sinned and are subject to death. Faced with this all-embracing problem, God sent Jesus to save all, because God desires all to be saved. There is nothing unbiblical here.

It Is All About Love
One can however ask, as has been asked throughout history, why is there something rather than nothing. Why did God create?

Certainly, the answer cannot be that God created because God was under some compulsion to do so. If we think in terms of compulsion, that would mean that there is a force outside of God that is greater than God and directing God against His will.

It will also mean that God is not free. But as Christians, we cannot think of God in those terms, for there is no power greater than Almighty God and secondly, God is perfect freedom.

The standard and acceptable answer that has been given why God created is that God did so as a free expression of His love for all that He created. Because God is love, the logic of creation must be love.

Moreover, we ought to recognize that God cannot deny Himself by acting outside of and contrary to who He is. Therefore, regardless of how things might appear to us and regardless of our personal attitude towards anyone, the fact remains that God loves everyone whom He creates.

Some Christians like to say “God is love but…” as if they are putting a limit to His love by raising some principle or attribute that is contrary to His love. But to put a limit to God’s love would be to make God finite instead of infinite. We ought to recognize that for God to be the infinite God, there cannot be a time when God ceases to be love.

If ever that happens then God would cease to be God. We have to affirm without compromise that God is forever love, for that is God’s nature. Love is His essence!

An important principle for us to recognize is this. For a being to be true to its nature, that being must always act in accordance with its nature. Any deviation would introduce an element of inauthenticity. If we accept this as a sound principle, it would mean that the following has to be true about God:

In creating, God did it out of love and for the sake of love.

Although all human beings (with the exception of Jesus, of course) became engulfed in sin, making all the enemies of God, nonetheless God continued to love all, never ceasing to do so.

The sin of the world is contrary to the will of God. This means that God is faced with a problem in His creation. The question that one would have to consider is whether this universal problem is beyond the ability and capacity of God to solve. I would like to think that any Christian who takes seriously the belief that God is the ultimate, supreme power would expect God to have the ability and capacity to solve this problem. If this problem is beyond God, then this problem would be ultimate and supreme and thereby God would be relegated to a lesser position. God would have turned out not to be God. But as good Christians, we dare not give place to that view.

Therefore, God’s unshakeable love for all human beings means that God cannot leave them in that state of enmity. This love for all explains why God desires all to be saved. This desire is not an arbitrary desire that God has without sound and reasonable foundation. It is not wishful thinking on the part of God. Instead, this desire to save all stems from the very nature of God – His nature of unchangeable love. That is the unshakeable foundation! Therefore, we must become suspicious of any theological view that shuts the door forever on God’s loving desire to save all.

It is this love for all that led to God sending His only begotten (monogene) Son Jesus Christ into the world as the sole Mediator between God and all human beings and the ransom for all human beings. This is a soundly scriptural position, as I will show later on. The question that one would have to consider is whether Jesus Christ got the job fully done. Was the task too big for Jesus Christ? I am quite sure that no Christian would say that the task was too big for Jesus.

When it comes to God, the truth is this. From beginning to end and forever, it is love. “For I am the Lord, I do not change” (Malachi 3: 6). God does not start off loving and then changes.

Leon “Bogo” Cornwall