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Old 05-03-2010, 04:31 AM
 
Location: Italy
6,387 posts, read 5,107,975 times
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I came across some writings by the late Hannah Whitall Smith awhile back on Tentmaker.org. Some of them I have been re-reading, and are really interesting.

Quotes like this one:
"I had expected to enter into a feeling of Christ's own personal sufferings in the life and death He bore for our sakes, but instead I seemed to have a revelation, not of His sufferings because of sin, but of ours. I seemed to get a sight of the misery and anguish caused to humanity by the entrance of sin into the world, and of Christ's sorrow, not for His own sufferings because of it, but for the sufferings of the poor human beings who had been cursed by it. I seemed to understand something of what must necessarily be His anguish at the sight of the awful fate which had been permitted to befall the human race, and of His joy that He could do something to alleviate it. I saw that ours was the suffering, and that His was the joy of sacrificing Himself to save us. I felt that if I had been a Divine Creator, and had allowed such an awful fate to befall the creatures I had made, I would have been filled with anguish, and would have realized that simple justice, even if not love, required that I should find some remedy for it. And I knew I could not be more just than God. I echoed in my heart over and over again the lines found by one of George Macdonald's characters engraved on a tombstone.
[CENTER]"Oh Thou, who didst the serpent make,
Our pardon give and pardon take.
"[/CENTER]
I had been used to hearing a great deal about the awfulness of our sins against God, but now I asked myself, what about the awfulness of our fate in having been made sinners? Would I not infinitely rather that a sin should be committed against myself, than that I should commit a sin against any one else? Was it not a far more dreadful thing to be made a sinner than to be merely sinned against? And I began to see that, since God had permitted sin to enter into the world, it must necessarily be that He would be compelled, in common fairness, to provide a remedy that would be equal to the disease."

Any thoughts?

Blessings to everyone,
Brian
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Old 05-03-2010, 05:24 AM
 
Location: SC Foothills
8,830 posts, read 9,746,380 times
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Hi Brian,

We had a short discussion about Hannah Whitall Smith in another thread not too long ago......the poster Sparrow told me about her and the three chapters that were removed from one of her books in a dm. I was so moved by her writings that I posted them in a thread (can't remember which one) for everyone to read....part of it was what you posted above.

I'm still not sold on universalism but I'm studying it and everything this woman said just struck a cord with me. I still cannot believe how far ahead of her time she was. It's a shame that these chapters were cut from her book. I have vowed to find a copy of the book (which the name of it eludes me right now) and once I make up my mind to do something it will get done.....just a matter of time. I purchased a book from the 1800's from a flea market in NC a few years back and I've even thought of making the drive to that flea market just to see if the man has it. I look at it like a treasure hunt, and once I find it I'll be on here pasting excerpts and trying to find someone who will re-print the book!!

Thanks for posting it.....she has a way of putting things into words that most of us cannot do.
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Old 05-03-2010, 08:07 AM
 
15,004 posts, read 7,530,359 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ahigherway View Post
<snip> Any thoughts? <snip>
I've had the same thoughts. It makes sense to me. Romans 8:20, 21; 11:32.
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Old 05-03-2010, 10:02 AM
 
Location: RV Park
7,543 posts, read 11,550,724 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ilene Wright View Post
I purchased a book from the 1800's from a flea market in NC a few years back and I've even thought of making the drive to that flea market just to see if the man has it. I look at it like a treasure hunt...!
Mat 13:44 - buy the whole flea market!
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Old 05-03-2010, 10:04 AM
 
20,298 posts, read 15,642,764 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ahigherway View Post
I came across some writings by the late Hannah Whitall Smith awhile back on Tentmaker.org. Some of them I have been re-reading, and are really interesting.

Quotes like this one:
"I had expected to enter into a feeling of Christ's own personal sufferings in the life and death He bore for our sakes, but instead I seemed to have a revelation, not of His sufferings because of sin, but of ours. I seemed to get a sight of the misery and anguish caused to humanity by the entrance of sin into the world, and of Christ's sorrow, not for His own sufferings because of it, but for the sufferings of the poor human beings who had been cursed by it. I seemed to understand something of what must necessarily be His anguish at the sight of the awful fate which had been permitted to befall the human race, and of His joy that He could do something to alleviate it. I saw that ours was the suffering, and that His was the joy of sacrificing Himself to save us. I felt that if I had been a Divine Creator, and had allowed such an awful fate to befall the creatures I had made, I would have been filled with anguish, and would have realized that simple justice, even if not love, required that I should find some remedy for it. And I knew I could not be more just than God. I echoed in my heart over and over again the lines found by one of George Macdonald's characters engraved on a tombstone.
[CENTER]"Oh Thou, who didst the serpent make,
Our pardon give and pardon take.
"[/CENTER]
I had been used to hearing a great deal about the awfulness of our sins against God, but now I asked myself, what about the awfulness of our fate in having been made sinners? Would I not infinitely rather that a sin should be committed against myself, than that I should commit a sin against any one else? Was it not a far more dreadful thing to be made a sinner than to be merely sinned against? And I began to see that, since God had permitted sin to enter into the world, it must necessarily be that He would be compelled, in common fairness, to provide a remedy that would be equal to the disease."

Any thoughts?

Blessings to everyone,
Brian
Adam's sin didn't catch God by surprise. From eternity past, God knew that Adam would sin. And the members of the Godhead planned FROM eternity past that the Second Person of the Trinity-Jesus Christ would come into the world as a member of the human race to provide the remedy for sin.

God gave Adam free will and set up a situation by which means Adam's volition would have something to work with. God gave Adam a command to not eat of one tree. As long as Adam obeyed God's command to refrain from eating of that tree his relationship with God would be maintained. But at the moment that he disobeyed God and ate the fruit of that tree, he would and did lose his relationship with God. Gen 2:17 But from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it dying (spiritually-loss of relationship with God) you shall die (physical death). Adam died spiritually immediately after he ate the fruit. But his physical death occurred many hundred's of years later.

Before Adam sinned, his point of contact with God was divine love. But God's love could not guarantee that Adam would not sin and therefore lose his relationship with God. The moment he sinned, Adam's point of contact with God switched from divine love to divine justice. Adam had sinned against an infinitely holy God who must impose a penalty on him for that sin. Eternal separation from God. Immediately after imposing the penalty of eternal separation from Himself on Adam God promised a Savior who would provide the solution to man's lost condition. Gen 3:15 And I will put enmity between you (Satan) and the woman, And between your seed and her seed; He (Jesus Christ) shall bruise you on the head, And you shall bruise Him on the heel. (the Cross).

Condemnation must precede salvation. God imposed the penalty for Adam's sin on the entire human race which would descend from him. Adam was the federal head of the human race. Had God NOT imposed the penalty for Adam's sin on the human race and then provided the solution of sending a Messiah into the world there would have been a situation in the human race whereby each individual man and woman who would be born would have had a relationship with God that would be maintained only for as long as they didn't sin, just as was Adam's situation before the fall. By imputing Adam's original sin to everyone who is born and imposing the penalty of spiritual death on the human race, God set up a situation whereby any individual who would choose to accept God's offer of salvation through faith in Christ would be saved and never be at risk of losing his relationship with God because of personal sin.

God created man with free will knowing that man would sin and knowing that He would provide the solution to man's lost condition. He did this because He created man to resolve the angelic conflict. Lucifer had rebelled against God and one third of the angelic race rebelled with him. God sentenced the fallen angels to the lake of fire. Whatever the means by which God gave the fallen angels an opportunity to be restored to a relationship with Him was, the Bible doesn't reveal. They remained in their rebellion and God sentenced them to the eternal fire. But the sentence wasn't carried out immediately because it pleased God to demonstrate to all of creation that He was justified in imposing that sentence on Satan and his followers.

Therefore, God create a lesser being, man, with nothing but free will in common with the angels and placed him on the earth. The earth is a playing field, a stage in which the angelic conflict is being played out. The angels are in the stands watching man and observing how in the changing circumstances of the different dispensations of human history there are individual members of the human race who will choose for God.

When any human being, a lower creation than the angels, and never having been in the presence of God in Heaven, decides that he wants to have a relationship with God through faith in Christ, this demonstrates to the angels that the ones who rebelled are without excuse, and that infinitely holy and eternal God who cannot allow sin to go unpunished, and who cannot allow fallen creatures who fail to avail themselves of God's solution to their fallen condition to remain in His presence, that God is perfectly just in sending them into that place that He has prepared for them. And where unbelieving mankind will also be sent. Matthew 25:41,46; Rev. 20:11-15.

It pleased God to create man to resolve the angelic conflict and to bring into glory those members of the human race who desire to have an eternal relationship with Him by receiving His offer of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.

You can learn more about the angelic conflict, the invisible war that man was created to resolve, here at this thread I posted a while back...

The Angelic Conflict; the Spiritual Warfare

The angelic conflict is one of the first things that a new believer in Christ should learn about, but sadly, very few Christians ever learn anything about it.
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Old 05-03-2010, 11:32 AM
 
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I think this is a power quote and one worthy of deeper thought on my part and I am grateful for the thought.
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Old 05-03-2010, 01:10 PM
 
Location: Italy
6,387 posts, read 5,107,975 times
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Hi all,
the reason I put up the original quote of Hannah's is because it seems to me to open up reflection on an issue that most religious groups forbid people to consider, and that is, "ok, we sin against God, but it is God who made us sinners!!" And if He made us sinners, there must be a good REASON, otherwise it would seem like He doesn't really love us. And the world is looking for love everyday.

I like to think that Hannah was right in her conclusions that God really IS in love with us, and that He does not put us in a bad condition unless it's for a better purpose, and not just to "see how many people will follow Him.."

Know what I mean?

Brian
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Old 05-03-2010, 01:32 PM
 
Location: RV Park
7,543 posts, read 11,550,724 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ahigherway View Post
I like to think that Hannah was right in her conclusions that God really IS in love with us, and that He does not put us in a bad condition unless it's for a better purpose, and not just to "see how many people will follow Him.."

Know what I mean?

Brian
Absolutely! We were made subject to vanity, not willingly, but because He made us that way in hope for a better life. (Rom 8:20)
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