"All" in Context
Two More Resurrections
Three Orders to Immortality
More Proofs that All Will Be Saved
What is Meant by All?
How much forgiveness?
What about forever Punishment?
This is a follow-up paper to NM13 ("All Saved") in which we examine more scripture about all being saved. We will, in so doing, consider whether or not the Bible really meant to say "all." Does all mean all?
nm412 >> This paper is concerned with the word "all" as it appears in scripture. When God, through the writers of the Bible, uses the word "all," does He mean all, or does he exaggerate? Does God stretch the truth like humans? This is very important. There are scriptures in which, if we take the word "all" to mean all, we see a different view of scripture than those who think God makes overstatements or exaggerates. There are psychological and spiritual reasons for some not understanding "all" as meaning all in scripture.
nm413 >> Let us first examine some of the "all" scriptures. Then we will discuss some of the alleged impossibilities about taking "all" as truly meaning ALL.
From Paul's resurrection chapter we read:
For as in Adam ALL die, even so in Christ shall ALL be made alive (1Cor 15:22; see Rom 5:14-18; Psa 82:7-8).
nm414 >> In this one sentence we have "all" repeated twice. Most believe the first "all," that is, because of Adam's sin all die. Most do not believe the second "all," that is, because of Christ all will be made alive. Does God, through Paul's writing, use "all" in two different ways in the same sentence? Is the second "all" ("all be made alive") a hyperbole or just a positive hope? Is the all powerful God just exaggerating here?
nm415 >> What is meant in 1Corinthians 15:22 by "be made alive"? Does it mean be made alive (resurrected) and thereafter be killed in some kind of hell fire? In context what does it mean to "be made alive"?
nm416 >> Here it speaks of the resurrection of the dead. All shall be made alive, but not at the same time. There is an order to the "all shall be made alive." In context this resurrection has something to do with "the resurrection of the dead.":
nm417 >> Who was the first one in this "order" of being made alive or thus being resurrected? Christ was the first one resurrected from the dead to life (1Cor 15:12, 19; Rom 1:4; Rev 1:18; etc.). This resurrection of Christ was not a resurrection like Lazarus or like other resurrections reported in the Bible (John 11:23-44; Mat 27:52-53). Lazarus was merely resurrected back to physical and mortal life. But Christ the first of the "order" of the "all shall be made alive," was resurrected to permanent life - to immortal life. Paul in this very important chapter of 1Corinthians chapter 15, explains what kind of resurrection he had in mind:
nm418 >> So in context of this chapter in Paul's writings, Christ the first of the order was resurrected to immortal life.
nm419 >> After Christ, the first of the order, comes "those who are Christ's at his coming." After Christ's resurrection to immortal life there is another resurrection at Christ's coming.
nm420 >> Scripture speaks of two more great resurrections. Acts 24:15 speaks of the resurrection of the JUST and UNJUST. John 5:29 speaks about the good having a "resurrection of life" and those who have done evil having a "resurrection of judgment." Those doing good, those that come to Christ and eat of the Spiritual manna will be resurrected "at the last day" and live "into the age" (John 6:39-44, 58, Greek text). These are those who are "worthy to obtain that age" - and who "are the children of God, being children of the resurrection" (Luke 20:35, 36).
nm421 >> This "last day," this "age" can be ascertained by other scripture and Biblical patterns. This last day is the 1000 year day (2Pet 3:8; Rev 20:2; see "Thousand Years and Beyond Paper" [NM 15]). Thus, "they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. (But the rest of the dead lived not until the thousand years were finished.) This is the first resurrection" (Rev 20:4, 5). There are two resurrections pictured here. The first one being those who will reign with Christ for 1000 years (Christians); the others are not resurrected until after the 1000 years.
nm422 >> This first resurrection of Revelation 20:4-5 is also the "resurrection of the just," or "the resurrection of life" (Acts 24:15; John 5:29). These are resurrected to "that age," the "last day," or that is, the 1000 year antitypical Sabbath day - the last day. The next resurrection after the one at Christ's coming or at the beginning of the "last day," is the resurrection after the 1000 year day (Rev 20:5a). This is the "resurrection of the unjust," or the "resurrection of judgment," that is, the resurrection of the evil bunch who are to be judged-down for the 1000 years.
"For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all shall be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the first fruit, after that those who are Christ's at his coming." (1Cor 15:22-23)
nm423 >> The first in the "order" to the new life was Christ who was the first to be resurrected from death to immortality. The second order in the resurrections mentioned in 1Cor 15:22-24 is also the "first resurrection" of Revelation 20:4-5, and is the resurrection of the real Christians who will be resurrected to immortality at Christ's coming and will rule with Christ for the 1000 years.
nm424 >> Scripture says "in Christ ALL shall be made alive. But each in his own order." If ALL are to be made alive, then most will be resurrected in the third of the "order." Christ was one person. Christians are few in number compared to the billions who died without Christ's Spirit. Thus, the resurrection with the greatest number of persons is the third order of resurrections, which is the resurrection after the 1000 years (Rev 20:4-5).
nm425 >> Pattern. As we have seen, these resurrections are resurrections to immortality. There is a pattern here. Christ, the first in the order, was the first to be resurrected to immortality. Christians, the second in the order, will be resurrected to immortality. The third in the order must also be resurrected to immortality. Thus, "in Christ ALL shall be made alive" (1Cor 15:22). They will truly be made alive; they will be given immortality. By taking these scriptures in context, by taking "all" to mean ALL, then "as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all shall be made alive." Thus, "so then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to ALL men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to ALL men" (Rom 5:18) Or, "for since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead" (1Cor 15:21).
nm427 >> Christ's resurrection was represented by the waving of the sheaf of the first fruits of Israel's first harvest of the year. Christians' resurrection was represented by Israel's spring harvest and its feast of weeks. The resurrection of the final harvest is represented by the final harvest of Israel in its feast of tabernacles (see "God's Appointed Times or Seasons Paper" [NM 16]). Another antitypical pattern is the Biblical Joseph (Christ), Manasseh (Christians), and Ephraim (the resurrection of the multitude of nations) (see "Seed Paper" [PR1]).
nm428 >> The third order is resurrected at the end. The "end" Paul is speaking about here is amplified on in verses 24 to 28. The end comes when:
nm429 >> At the end there will be no death. This chapter in 1Corinthians chapter 15 is speaking about resurrections to life, about immortality. Thus, after the third resurrection to immortality, then death is abolished, then the God is ALL in ALL. Satan and his evil influence will be abolished. Death, Satan's greatest power (Heb 2:14), is abolished at the END. Since God is ALL in ALL at the "end," and since God is love (1John 4:8), then Biblical love will be in ALL at the "end." There will be NO evil. In Christ all shall be made alive. This is, alive in the Spiritual sense of alive - being immortal and being inside the true life, being inside of God and His true Biblical love.
nm430 >> After death is abolished, then comes true the saying, "death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave where is thy victory?" (1Cor 15:54, 55; see Hosea 13:14)
nm431 >> Here is some further proof that all will be saved:
God is the God of ALL flesh. But now in this age Satan is the god of the flesh belonging to this present evil age (2Cor 4:4). Thus at some future time God will truly be God of all flesh.
After Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were dead, God spoke to Moses, "I am the God of thy fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob" (Exo 3:6). To give proof for the resurrection of the dead Christ said, "now that the dead are raised, even Moses showed at the bush, when he called the Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. For he is not a God of the dead, but of the living: for ALL live unto him" (Luke 20:37-38).
By God calling Himself the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob when they were dead, He was projecting their future resurrection to life. By God saying He is "God of ALL flesh," He is projecting the resurrection of all flesh to life in the future.
These Psalms were not placed in the Bible for mere words of hope; they are words of prophecy like Psalms 22, 110, and all others. All will praise God in the truest sense (note Phil 2:10-11; Rom 14:11; Isa 45:23).
In order for ALL to praise God, then ALL must be resurrected to life. Thus,
As this scripture shows, for number (8) to come true, then all must be resurrected to life - Spiritual life.
In order to understand the wrath of God, when it is, and what it is; and in order to understand the aeonian life, you must read the "God's Wrath Paper" [PR4], the "Thousand Years and Beyond Paper" [NM 15], and the "Reward for Christians Paper" [NM 11]. Those that do not believe the Son are those resurrected with the unjust after the 1000 years (see above).
He died for ALL (1John 2:2); we live for Him and to Him.
Now is that time.
Remember the True God is ALL powerful; He can "even subject ALL things to himself."
We are ambassadors for Christ, and our word, our message, is the message of reconciliation, that is, the reconciliation of the whole cosmos to Christ. All are to go into the Church of Christ, that is the body of Christ (Eph 1:23; and other above scripture).
nm432 >> "Therefore also God highly exalted him, and bestowed on him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus EVERY knee should bow, of those who are in heaven [angels], and on earth [mankind], and under the earth [the dead]" (Phil 2:9-10).
nm433 >> By putting the above scriptures together, how can anyone with the Spirit of God say anything else but that Christ is the Savior of the whole cosmos - all the angels and all the flesh. The ALL powerful God has the Spirit of Biblical love. This love, this Spirit is one of MERCY:
God's Spirit is one of forgiveness:
nm434 >> The higher meaning here is giving your enemy Spiritual bread to eat, and Spiritual water to drink. The truest enemy of God is Satan. Since Satan is a spiritual angel, and since angels cannot die (Luke 20:36), then the only way God can be ALL in ALL at the "end," is for Satan to be given repentance and then given the Spiritual bread and Spiritual water. Remember God is ALL powerful, and it is God who gives repentance (Acts 5:31; 11:18; 2Tim 2:25; Rom 11:29; 2:4; 2Peter 3:9).
nm435 >> If you look up these scriptures just listed you will see God does give repentance. If you read other papers we have like, "Predestination Paper" [NM 8], the "Proof Paper" [NM 10], the "Reward for Christians Paper" [NM 11], the "According to Works Paper" [NM 12], the "All Saved Paper" [NM 13], and other papers, then you will begin to understand that the ALL powerful God is in total control of the cosmos and is leading it to the final state where God will be in the truest sense - ALL in ALL.
nm437 >> The ALL powerful God will be ALL in ALL (1Cor 15:28) because God's Spirit of love will fill the whole universe at the true END or at the true fullness of the ages (Jer 23:24 - truest sense of this scripture, see God Papers).
nm438 >> If we are to believe that the ALL powerful God is in full control, and will be the Savior of the whole cosmos through his Son, and will fill ALL in ALL with his Spirit, then what about the scriptures that apparently say that those who do evil will be punished with forever punishment?
nm439 >> First it is true that God through his built-in laws (cause and effect) does punish (Exo 34:7; etc). Satan - the main cause of evil (see "Other Mind Paper" [NM 21]) - will be punished for 1000 years (Rev 20:2).
nm440 >> But how does God judge? How does God's wrath work? How does God make war against his enemies?
Notice they will be judged in the last day - that 1000 year day (see above, see "Thousand Years and Beyond Paper" [NM 15]).
nm441 >> God's wrath is not like man's wrath, "but the wrath of man works not the righteousness of God" (James 1:20). God's wrath is to let evil destroy evil (Psa 9:15; 10:2; Prov 11:6; 12:13; Isa 3:11; 59:18; Joel 3:4; Obad 1:15; Jer 25:32; Isa 19:2; Mat 24:7; Ezek 38:21; 32:12; Hag 2:22; Zech 14:13; Rev 17:16; see "God's Wrath Paper" [PR4]).
nm442 >> There is nothing righteous about man's wrath, but God's wrath is fair - mankind punishes themselves. Satan also punishes himself. He will start the Last War, through his evil influences. This Last War's bombs will be flying everywhere at once. The earth will actually begin to burn up (2Pet 3:10; Isa 64:1-3; Psa 97:1-5; Rev 18:8; Mal 4:1; etc.). But Christ is the Savior, thus he will cut this day of wrath short (Mat 24:22). But Satan and his angels will dwell in the fire they made for 1000 years (Rev 20:2; Mat 25:41).
nm443 >> But what about the forever punishment? There are scriptures in many English translations that speak of "forever" or "everlasting" punishment. How can God be ALL in ALL at the "end," if at the same time there are those being punished with forever punishment? How can God have mercy on ALL if some are being punished forever? How can God be the Savior of the whole cosmos, if some are being punished forever? How can ALL praise and worship God, even those under the earth (in graves - Phil 2:9-10), if some are being punished forever? Isn't this a great contradiction? You bet it is!
nm444 >> We know that all the words that go out of God will happen (Isa 55:11; 46:10-11; etc.). We also have intuitive knowledge about the Law of Contradiction: One thing or event cannot at the same time be and not be (see God Papers). We know that God, who created wisdom and logic, cannot be illogical. God does not think against the very basic Law of Contradiction. It would be pure foolishness to reason against the Law of Contradiction as Aristotle once showed (GP1; and Metaphysics). We have in this paper gone over in some detail the scriptures on ALL being saved. It would be very difficult for someone with God's Spirit to deny these scriptures and their ordinary meaning. Thus, we come to the word translated "forever" in many (but not all) translations of the Bible. The apparent contradiction has to do with a gross mistranslation.
nm445 >> The mistranslation of "forever" appalled me when I first found it out. The mistranslation projects the length some will go to feed fear, hate, and unforgiveness to their sheep. This mistranslation also forces some not to take God's word for what it says - all will be saved - God is in control. Satan is foolish and does not know the mercy and kindness of God. Satan was allowed his evil power for a purpose much like the Pharaoh (a type of Satan):
nm446 >> But because Satan does not understand God's mercy, he is very dangerous. So dangerous is he, that he will influence mankind to begin to destroy themselves in the Last War (see "God's Wrath Paper" [PR4]).
nm447 >> The mistranslation of "forever" has helped to cause many to ignore the predestination scriptures. But what is "free" choice? Did Israel have free choice? They did not have God's Spirit, thus could not "please God" (Rom 8:7-9). Because of this, physical Israel did not have the power to choose good (note Deut 30:15-20). Adam and Eve also did not have any "free" choice (see "Free Will Versus Predestination" paper [NM 9]).
nm448 >> Not all English translations have mistranslated "forever." These translations correctly translate this word(s):
by Joseph Bryant Rotherham
by Robert Young
Author of the Analytical Concordance to the Bible
nm449 >> Many Interlinear Bibles in Greek also translate these words correctly (the Zondervan Parallel New Testament in Greek and English). Some English translations from time to time correctly translate these words. (Note "for ever" in the KJV versus "lasting" in NIV, Exo 28:43; in Gen 17:13 note "everlasting covenant" in the KJV versus "a covenant to time indefinite" in the New World Translation; etc.)
nm450 >> In many English translations "forever," "everlasting," and "eternal" have been mistranslated from words from Hebrew (olam) and words from Greek (aion, aionios) that mean age, ages, agelong or aeonian, hidden time, life-long, life-age. We have covered this subject in our "Age Paper" [NM 7]. We constantly use the correct translation throughout our study of the Bible. Thus, those of evil go to agelong punishment, not "forever" punishment. That age is the 1000 year age (Rev 20:2). Thus, an agelong or aeonian plan of God is projected in scripture once the correct and proper translation is used. Therefore, it is not only possible for God to save ALL, but it will be. God will be ALL in ALL. God will prove his ALL powerfulness. God is God. Who can stop Him?