Saturday, March 10, 2012

TheoPerspectives, "Orthodoxy & Gregory of Nyssa's Universalism"



From author James Goetz,
"I: INTRODUCTION
Gregory of Nyssa famously defended the doctrine of the Trinity in the Second Ecumenical Council in AD 381, and Gregory of Nyssa also defended the doctrine of universalism with the restoration of all things. Ironically, the Fifth Ecumenical Council in 553 condemned Origen's universalism according to the wishes of Emperor Flavius Justinian, who wanted to condemn all universalist teachings, but the Fifth Ecumenical Council also commended Gregory of Nyssa, calling him a holy Father who wrote about the true faith. And universalism has been heterodox in most of Western Christianity since then.1

On the other hand, universalism was an orthodox option during the Early Church and the first four Ecumenical Councils. For example, four of the six known theological schools during the Church's first five centuries taught universalism.2

Gregory of Nyssa had exemplary trinitarian credentials and taught that the unsaved dead suffer punishment in hell while he also taught that hell is purgatorial and temporary. He taught that hell is purgatorial in that the punishments in hell purge the sinful dispositions of the unsaved dead. And he taught that hell is temporary in that the unsaved dead suffer punishment in degree and duration according to their sinfulness. And this implies that the unsaved dead will eventually repent in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and get liberated from hell.3

Modern evangelical denominations typically forbid doctrines of purgatorial hell. For example, the Assemblies of God credentialed me a few years ago, but I had to resign my credentials or waive my right to teach my recently modified interpretations of future prophecies in Scripture.

This paper contends that Christian Scriptures teach that the unsaved dead can eventually repent in the name of Jesus to get saved out of hell and accepted into heaven. And this paper contends that such formerly orthodox teachings should be orthodox within evangelical churches. And here is a review of some relevant Scriptures and various opposition. . .
Gregory of Nyssa famously defended the doctrine of the Trinity in the Second Ecumenical Council in AD 381, and Gregory of Nyssa also defended the doctrine of universalism with the restoration of all things. Ironically, the Fifth Ecumenical Council in 553 condemned Origen's universalism according to the wishes of Emperor Flavius Justinian, who wanted to condemn all universalist teachings, but the Fifth Ecumenical Council also commended Gregory of Nyssa, calling him a holy Father who wrote about the true faith. And universalism has been heterodox in most of Western Christianity since then."
To continue, TheoPerspectives and Gregory of Nyssa


A very interesting post. Gave me much food for thought. 


--Nick

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