Hi, my name is Michael Webber.
This project started as a skeptic's journey, I was not inclined toward the doctrine of Universal Salvation. I actually wanted to refute the doctrine. Three years ago if someone told me I would be a defender of Universal Salvation I would have laughed at them. After being exposed to the concept of universal salvation, through Jesus Christ, I decided to take a closer look. I found considerable resources at tentmaker.org and on the web. At that point I was convinced there was something to this that needed further consideration and refuting the doctrine would not be so easy. Therefore I set a goal to either defend or refute the doctrine through an exhaustive study of the subject.
Where did this doctrine originate and why has it returned? It turned out that this doctrine is extremely ancient and was the prevailing eschatological view of the primitive Christian church. It has appeared over and over throughout history, sometimes independently of any previous movement. Perhaps this is because there are passages in the New Testament that specifically tell us this is the case, even if those passage appear to contradict other passages. Is there a way to resolve these conflicts in scripture and what side does that resolution fall on?
When I realized this doctrine, originally called the Apokatastasis, originated with early Greek speaking church fathers my interest became intense. A church father named Origen, although not the originator of the doctrine, had taken it to a very high level in the early third century. These church fathers could read the New Testament in their native tongue. Why did they read the New Testament so much different than we do today? Are there translation problems in our modern bibles that need to be accounted for? All these questions sent me on a quest for answers.
My first concern was if there were any critical church doctrines Universal Salvation might violate. The doctrine isn't in conflict with Nicene or Apostles creed. However, I did find that Emperor Justinian condemned Universalism and ordered all of Origen's books to be burned. Emperor Justinian also waged non-stop wars of conquest forcing the defeated nations to convert to Christianity. Justinian also slaughtered 30,000 people who did not want to convert to Christianity. In short, "Saint Justinian", as they called him, was running a brutal theocracy in the name of Christ and his methods were anything but Christian. Justinian, burns books, and was as brutal as any Nazi. Calling him a Saint is an insult to all Christians. I would expect such a man to support eternal punishment in order to terrorize his people into submission. I have no reason whatsoever to reject Universalism based on his opinion.
Having cleared the doctrine for consideration that's when it got interesting. There actually was overwhelming scriptural support for the doctrine. It was like all the puzzle pieces came together, passages that appeared to conflict came together.
Every serious bible student knows that Calvinism and Arminianism cannot both be true. It turned out that was because they were both false. Yet the church tolerates both of these doctrines. Universal Salvation is the correct answer to that puzzle, how salvation is ultimately applied. In fact the incoherencies in both Calvinism and Arminianism were resolved by Universal Salvation, and that really had my attention. Verses used to support both of those doctrines nicely fit into the Universal Salvation framework without conflict. Therefore Universal Salvation deserves the same respect given to Calvinism and Arminianism.
The one thing that was lacking in all the wonderful resources I read was a coherent outline for the doctrine that can be defended from scripture. Having been a student of the bible for over 30 years I immediately could see the doctrine in scripture and organized it into a five point framework. All my notes, that turned into a book, were in defense of the framework. I believe the doctrine when properly understood is an impregnable five point fortress with each wall defending another.
I want the world to know that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the WHOLE WORLD! I may publish my notes as an entire book at a later date. Currently I am using that work for teaching the doctrine here, at my blog, and on youtube. I cover more advanced concepts in my 135 pages of notes that I may organize and publish at a later date.
Currently my goal is to just help get the message out there. There are so many people who have lost loved ones and have been taught they are lost forever. Nothing could be further from the truth. Jesus Christ has every single human soul safely in his hands. Christ is 100% victorious and has conquered sin and death for all mankind, that is why he came. That the resurrection of Jesus Christ means Salvation for all mankind is the Gospel! If you proclaim this Gospel expected to be persecuted by the religious leaders of our day just as the early Christians were.
While not a critical doctrine this is an important doctrine that deserves at least as much respect as Calvinism and Arminianism have been given.
Thanks to everyone who subscribed to the newsletter and to my youtube channel. I greatly appreciate you standing with me in this mission to let the world know that Jesus Christ is Savior of the WHOLE WORLD!