which has been the subject of most constant thought, retribution may come to us through the operation of the laws of our own nature.
Jackson, James Martineau, 193-195 ? ?Plato holds that the wise transgressor will seek, not shun, his punishment. James Martineau painted a fearful picture of the possible lashing of conscience. He regarded suffering for sin, though dreadful, yet as altogether desirable, not to be asked reprieve from, but to be prayed for: ?Smite, Lord; for thy-mercy?s sake, spare not!? The soul denied such suffering is not favored but defrauded. It learns the truth of its condition, and the truth and the right of the universe are vindicated.? The Connecticut preacher said: ?My friends, some believe that all will be saved; but we hope for better things. Chaff and wheat are not to be together always. One goes to the garner and the other to the furnace.?
Shedd, Dogmatic Theology, 2:755 ? ?Luxurious ages and luxurious men recalcitrate at hell and ?kick against the goad? ( <442614>Acts 26:14). No theological doctrine is more important than eternal retribution to those modem nations which, like England, Germany and the United States, are growing rapidly in riches, luxury and earthly power. Without it, they will infallibly go down in that vortex of sensuality and wickedness that swallowed up Babylon and Rome. The bestial and shameless vice of the dissolute rich that has recently been uncovered in the commercial metropolis of the world is a powerful argument for the necessity and reality of ?the lake that burneth with fire and brimstone? (Revelations 21:8).? The conviction that after death there must be punishment for sin has greatly modified the older Universalism. There is little modern talk of all men, righteous and wicked alike, entering heaven the moment this life is ended. A purgatorial state must intervene. E. G. Robinson: ?Universalism results from an exaggerated idea of the atonement. There is no genuine Universalism in our day. Restorationism has taken its place.?
(b) But guilt, or ill desert, is endless. However long the sinner may be punished, he never ceases to be ill deserving. Justice therefore, which gives to all according to their deserts, cannot cease to punish since the reason for punishment is endless, the punishment itself must be endless. Even past sins involve an endless guilt, to which endless punishment is simply the inevitable correlate.
For full statement of this argument that guilt, as never coming to an end, demands endless punishment. See Shedd, Doctrine of Endless Punishment, 118-163 ? ?Suffering that is penal can never come to an end. Guilt is the reason for its infliction and guilt, once incurred, never ceases to be. One
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