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Old 07-14-2009, 07:11 PM
 
Location: East Coast
30,221 posts, read 19,991,820 times
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Did any of you come to believe in it through someone else sharing it with you ? or was it through some other means.

I personally first came across it through reading something on the internet when i was infact seeking something entirely different.
When i first read of it i could do nothing but weep in brokeness .

The reason i ask this is , i really think if a christian would have shared this with me i think i would have rejected it(knowing what i am like myself).
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Old 07-14-2009, 07:18 PM
 
6,221 posts, read 6,408,216 times
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Discovered it on my own (by chance?) by reading many many articles on different web sites and then comparing what they said with scripture. I was trying to understand how the mark of the beast/end times scenario's all fit together, and I figured someone on the net must know what they are talking about. Then I discovered bible-truths and tentmaker.

Was it really by chance I discovered this? I don't think so.

Would I have accepted it if someone else tried to explain it to me? Probably not. In fact I think I may have had heard it discussed (maybe not specifically UR, but UU), but I dismissed it as heresy or new-agey.
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Old 07-14-2009, 07:31 PM
 
5,925 posts, read 5,685,493 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pcamps View Post
Did any of you come to believe in it through someone else sharing it with you ? or was it through some other means.

I personally first came across it through reading something on the internet when i was infact seeking something entirely different.
When i first read of it i could do nothing but weep in brokeness .

The reason i ask this is , i really think if a christian would have shared this with me i think i would have rejected it(knowing what i am like myself).

It was shared to me over the internet as well and I rejected it without much thought at the time, but I was drawn to it over time. I come to believe it through a real struggle emotionally. I was torn between my emotional attachment to my religious family and stepping out into the wilderness of thought that leaves a person emotionally empty.

That emptiness has been replaced not so much with some emotional feeling, but solid knowledge of how good God is.

Yep, easy to say, much harder to live, but that's the basics of it.
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Old 07-14-2009, 09:56 PM
 
15,037 posts, read 7,546,690 times
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It was shared on a message board and I vehemently opposed it as being dangerous and blasphemous. In order to refute it intelligently I had to study it and in doing so it became more and more apparent that this belief was firmly grounded in Scripture.

It was a hugely emotional struggle for me because the fear was so strongly ingrained in me that if I believed the wrong things about God I would be consigned to an eternal existance without Him. I was terrified of crossing that boundary and being lost forever. Thank God His love is more powerful than fear and that He is endlessly persistent in pursuing us with that love or I'd still be trapped in that place.

Like Phazelwood, there was also the matter of emotional attachment to my religious family (which includes my physical family). There is a wilderness aspect to it, no doubt, but once the truth dawned on me there was really never any possibility of turning away from it. I don't like walking this path without support and fellowship, but there is simply no choice in the matter as far as I'm concerned. Walking away from the truth of who God is is not an option, and even if it were I would never want to take it and return to the darkness I once lived in.
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Old 07-14-2009, 10:17 PM
 
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I do want to add that there was another person on that message board who I had come to respect greatly for the love of Christ which was so evident in his dealings with others and with myself. He was not at that point a URist, but he did not dismiss the possibility out of hand the way I did because he had a much clearer understanding of God's love overall. His willingness to discuss the matter with a quietness and humility of spirit that was open to the truth, whatever it might be, definitely had an impact on me even in the midst of my rampant need to prove UR wrong.
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Old 07-14-2009, 10:51 PM
 
Location: Tucson, Arizona
987 posts, read 878,950 times
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I clearly remember being on a Christian site years ago and someone privately trying to discuss the possibility of UR with me. But I wouldn't listen, was polite to him but said no thanks.

Years later I started having trouble with the concept of all these rites that the church insists you must DO in order to be saved. You hear about a gift and all you have to do is believe, then they tack on all these other things and you are constantly wondering if you crossed some line or if your salvation is really real. So I started going online and reading lots and lots of articles. I started seeing that my church did not have the inisde scoop on many things. I was driven is the only way I can describe it. I read books from online authors about God's sovereignty over us and that our wills are not sovereign even in our own life. That our choices are limited, not infinite. I discovered, much to my consternation, that when I read scripture I read it through the lens that the church had taught me from. I would have sworn I didn't but I most certainly had. I became a Calvinist for a few years, fully convinced that God had predestined who would be saved and who wouldn't, there were just too many scriptures that confirmed this. But something bothered me and I found I was even more fearful of a God who would put millions into a place full of misery, pain and torment and turn HIs back on them. How could I know for sure that I was one of the elect. After all I could see I still was far from a tongues-speaking, laying on of hands type of Christian. I tentatively began reading UR sites. I didn't think they would convince me, after all, I had resisted it for so long. But the second site I came to I was in tears and embraced the total love of God and for the first time in my life KNEW that God loved me no matter how scarlet my sins were. And not only me, but everyone ever created. I could finally understand WHY we were to love our enemies. It didn't mean I could instantly do that, but it was easier to see how it was possible knowing that God had the best intentions for them also, before all was said and done. THEN I started searching out the seeming contradictions that sometimes gave me pause to reconsider and stumbled upon the aion/aionian mistranslation and looked up every verse that contained some form of the word in it and could not believe how many DIFFERENT translations were given that ONE word. I studied about hell being a translation of FOUR DIFFERENT Hebrew/Greek words. Learned that damnation centrueis ago simply meant a loss, having to pay back what one owed, nothing even close to what it has come to mean today. I learned that the story of Lazarus and the Rich Man was a PARABLE and how it fit into what Jesus had been talking about with the other parables and not just all of a sudden start talking about Hell. I learned SO MANY things that never were explained in church. The studies I loved most were how every story in the Bible relates some aspect of Christ to us. And especially Ruth, where Boaz symbolizes Jesus, our kinsman redeemer, who redeems not just Naomi's property, but ALL that was Mahlon and Chilion. I can't even remember the scope of the types I studied. But they are fascinating.

Sorry this was so long. And it is true, embracing this concept caused me to wander a lonely road. But it is well worth it. My sisters at least just ignore it now instead of trying to convert me back to the "old belief". But I am sure with all my heart that the Bible absolutely sets forth that God has a plan that will bring ALL of his creation to the place He has always intended for them to be.

Amen
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Old 07-14-2009, 11:14 PM
 
Location: NC
11,918 posts, read 13,821,515 times
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Hi, I had been a member of the church of Christ for about 15 years and believed that only those who were members of this group were saved, all others doomed to eternal hell. I spent many nights in fear for my family members and friends, was very evangelistic but the teaching of eternal hell did not mesh with what who I knew to be Father who is love. So I knew in my spirit that there had to come a time when the Father would say, enough is enough. I had never heard of universal salvation and was doing many studies on baptism and other topics on the web. I came across the Tentmaker site (which I believe was the plan of God) and began to read some of the articles. My mouth literally dropped open when I discovered that I was not the only one who had questions about eternal hell and who also embraced the magnitude of God's love for all mankind and so I began to study the scriptures to see if this was was so. I became involved in many discussions along with believers like Mhz and FineLinen, with those who believed as I use to and I began to see that the arguments supporting eternal hell could not hold up to scripture. I believe that I may have been open to discussing with someone with someone if they had approached me at that time. God bless.
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Old 07-15-2009, 01:24 AM
 
193 posts, read 242,942 times
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I came from a background that was much stricter than most of the 'mainliners' here. Believing 99% were lost and 1% saved would be more than 'a little optimistic'. I use to walk around without much joy.......for many years.

I think it started basically on another forum I visit. A person on there was always sharing UR, and I think more than anything I was curious and a bit jealous of their Joy. After a little bit of studying and realizing the sciptures that just can't be sidestepped. It's all opened up to me. I don't believe God's in the business of tormenting. He's in the business of loving.

Lately I'm starting to see it more and more......

When I was first saved many years ago 'I felt like I was suppost to warn everyone' and help them experience what I had. Now I feel like God has everything in control. I don't have to be a parrot. If anything I think I can help God more by showing him more as he is.....so peole witness his love. In scrtipures and in Life. Not the distorted 'tormentor' view we offten get from religion/Rome.
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Old 07-15-2009, 06:27 AM
 
Location: Germany
1,647 posts, read 1,708,896 times
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I grow up evangelical, when confronted much later with the doctrine of everlasting torment, I searched the internet what the bible actually says, I soon came across annihilationism and this made the most sense for me.

I must say, that my parents, though comservative evangelicals, didn't much confront me with that doctrine, though they believed it until recently, they hold both to annhilation now.

later I came across the Concordant writings which instantly convinced me of universalism by the comparision of Revelation 21 and 22 with 1 Corinthians 15, I purchased then the Concordant bible and began to check if their translation is right on the terms aiôn and aiônios, I read very much about the subject, especially the history of universalism...

I wondered as a child if Matthew 21:31

Whether of them twain did the will of his father? They say unto him, The first. Jesus saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you.

means all will finally be saved and I still think implies so
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Old 07-16-2009, 02:09 AM
 
7,374 posts, read 7,202,500 times
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Its interesting how the internet has played a role in most if not all our awakenings. I believe that is because many people are more open to exploring ideas when they are anonymous and don't have others looking over their shoulder and judging them. They are also able to more freely express their true feelings and thoughts for the same reasons. Not to mention the vast amount of information now available thanks to the internet and indexing sites. What just 12 years ago would cost hundreds of dollars in books alone and not to mention library time ... It would have been impossible to have gained so much information so fast without it.

My experience is similar ... I was having a real hard time with the idea of eternal damnation to be honest with you. Because of so many people i met in my life who had devoted lifestyles and were good people that where not Christian. They often helped me when my own family wouldn't for one reason or another. Thats when i really started thinking about it and praying and studying ... I came across an Andrew Jukes e-book and the rest is history. I learn more every day ... And much of it has to do with UR. It really seems to tie everything together in a way i was never able to do before. I must admit for a long time i did believe that many people who were not believers would not go to hell. However even the thought Hitler or even Satan being tortured for ever was still to much for me after a while. It just didn't make sense but i couldn't figure it out.

Then, it all became clear ...
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