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Edwards GracEmail - Jacob's Wives - Question?
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Edwards GracEmail - Jacob's Wives - Question? 4 years, 5 months ago #2048

  • mikeowens
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While reading the book Evangelical Universalism and listening to some of Chris's excellent interviews - it becomes obvious that the biblical support for Conditionalism and the possibility of eventual redemption of all by Jesus's finished work on the cross (Evangelical Universalism) is very strong and these two views seem to be somewhat equal. The biblical and philosophical support for the Traditional view is constantly becoming more remote and almost absurd.

While thinking about some of the positives of Evangelical Universalism, I received this GracEmail from Edward Fudge. (December 22)

As you read this, keep in mind that Edward does not imply or mention anything about universal redemption of all mankind in this message. THIS IS 100% MY OBSERVATION and possibly worth some feedback by others.

Here's the GracEmail (which is Part 1. Part 2 will probably arrive from Edward in a day or two):

"To our view of things Jacob has four wives, but he truly loves only the one. And make no mistake, the woman holding Jacob's heart is Rachel. Always was. Never changed. To pay her dowry, Jacob works seven years for her father Laban. Then comes the big occasion. He feasts all day with the boys, receives his bride from her father, and consummates his marriage. The next morning Jacob wakes up, looks at New Wife, and recognizes--not Rachel, but older sister Leah. Jacob realizes that he has been sold a babe in a burqa, or, better still, a charmer in a chadri (Gen. 29). Tough luck. What's done is done.

We don't know whether Jacob is standing, sitting or lying when the true identity of the woman calling him "husband" sinks in, but we can believe that the first time Leah hears Jacob say her name she knows that her marriage is off to a rocky start. Laban-the-Crafty has cheated Jacob-the-Trickster, and has gotten away with it as well. When the dust settles, the men strike a new deal. As before, Rachel is the prize, but that waiting business is ancient history. Jacob works seven more years for his lady's hand, but this time the period of indenture begins with a wedding. So much for Laban's personal promises, pledges and guarantees.

Each sister brings a woman-servant with them and Jacob gains two concubines or wives-to-spare. Then starts the race for babies to build this man Jacob a tribe (Gen. 29-30), Between the four of them, wives and concubines together bear Jacob twelve sons and a daughter named Dinah. But of all the babies, only one, Joseph, belongs to Rachel, and the story's spotlight will shift to Joseph for almost the last third of Genesis. Deep into that story, Rachel has another son, Benjamin. His descendants will include Saul, Israel's first king, and a man named Saul from Tarsus, who will write about half of the Christian additions to the Jewish Bible. The bad news is that Rachel dies in childbirth with Benjamin and is buried near Bethlehem (Gen. 35). You can visit her purported tomb still today.

More than a thousand years after Rachel's death, a Babylonian army snatches Jacob's descendants of the Southern Kingdom--including the tribe of Benjamin and the villagers of Bethlehem--and hauls them by force to faraway Babylon. The deportees are processed from a village called Ramah, five miles north of Jerusalem, which provides their last scenes of the homeland--the ones they will most remember. Babies are extra trouble for the Babylonian soldiers, who dispense with them by sword or by slamming their head against a rock. Jeremiah captures the horrific scene: babies dying, mothers crying. And, when the wind is just right in Bethlehem, some of the old women swear that they hear long-dead Rachel, also, weeping for her children and refusing to be comforted. A prophet named Jeremiah makes a note from his holy imagination and writes it in his book (Jer. 31:15). But Rachel's weeping is not over yet."


In a nut shell - here are my thoughts that I'd appreciate any reaction.

To Jacob, his chosen wife was Rachel. However, God's plan obviously involved other women to be a part of His overall plan. If God is in control here - and we know He is - then He has included these other three women to be a part of the building of Israel.

Would it be accurate to possibly read into this that those who are not "chosen" in this life could still be a part of God's overall redemptive tapestry?
Mike Owens - "So, Why Didn't They Tell Me That In Church?"
A Curious Layman Reveals TEN Things The Church Has Failed to Teach
Last Edit: 4 years, 5 months ago by mikeowens. Reason: typo

Re: Edwards GracEmail - Jacob's Wives - Question? 4 years, 5 months ago #2054

  • Givemhell
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Universalism has to do with salvation on an individual level not a national level. The bible pictures individuals from all nations redeemed to form a single people. It does not imagine that all individuals of all nations will be saved.

I do not think that the case for universalism and annihilationism are equal. Far from it. Universalism does not have a leg to stand on. The bible describes the punishment of the wicked as total destruction more times than I can count contrasting the fate of the wicked with the fate of the righteous. Unlike the wicked who will face eternal destruction the righteous will inherit eternal life. To avoid this concept which is presented in countless different ways throughout scripture generally takes a major paradigm shift on the part of the Universalist.
What bliss will fill the ransomed souls,
When they in glory dwell,
To see the sinner as he rolls,
In quenchless flames of hell.

- Isaac Watts

Re: Edwards GracEmail - Jacob's Wives - Question? 4 years, 5 months ago #2055

  • mikeowens
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I agree. There's certainly differences in the redemption of individuals vs. nations (typically Israel).

Your point about the overwhelming evidence in God's word regarding the destruction of the lost is a tough hurdle for universalism.

THANKS for your response.
Mike Owens - "So, Why Didn't They Tell Me That In Church?"
A Curious Layman Reveals TEN Things The Church Has Failed to Teach

Re: Edwards GracEmail - Jacob's Wives - Question? 4 years, 5 months ago #2067

  • Singalphile
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mikeowens wrote:
In a nut shell - here are my thoughts that I'd appreciate any reaction.

To Jacob, his chosen wife was Rachel. However, God's plan obviously involved other women to be a part of His overall plan. If God is in control here - and we know He is - then He has included these other three women to be a part of the building of Israel.

Would it be accurate to possibly read into this that those who are not "chosen" in this life could still be a part of God's overall redemptive tapestry?


Hello. My brief thought is that I don't really see any particular application from that historical narrative to anything in any reckoning about an afterlife.
"Singalphile" - Name chosen (hastily) to indicate being on a narrow path, pursuing the love of God. Male, upper-30's, USA.
Last Edit: 4 years, 5 months ago by Singalphile.

Re: Edwards GracEmail - Jacob's Wives - Question? 7 months, 3 weeks ago #5118

  • Msandino
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Givemhell --

Aren't we open-minded?

Don't they say the "Jesus spoke more about hell than heaven?"

Seems to me at times the hardened Annihilationist can turn around and dismiss out of hand the Universalist -- in the way that folks treated Mr. Fudge when he first began to ask tough questions.


Just a thought.
Last Edit: 7 months, 3 weeks ago by Msandino. Reason: Trying to add the name of the person I was responding to...
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