The Universal[ism] Drift
I’ve been involved in observing trends and doctrinal influences among evangelical Christians for nearly four decades, and there have been only a few unbiblical developments that have surprised me. I’ve been grieved by them, but not shocked (mostly because I’m well versed in what the Scriptures say will take place as we draw near to the return of Jesus Christ). If you’ll note the survey listed in this month’s NewsWatch section, it describes the beliefs among those who profess to be “born again” Christians as a “hodgepodge,” a mixture of true and false teachings. Critically related to salvation is the increasing belief of professing Christians that one can earn his or her way to heaven. This false doctrine has joined universalism (which claims that everyone ends up in heaven) as one that more and more evangelicals are embracing.
A major reason for this drift-verging-on-a-landslide into unbiblical beliefs is that fewer and fewer Christians are reading God’s Word and are therefore not alerted to the warning given in Hebrews:2:1: “Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip.” The church for the most part is not only slipping biblically—it isn’t even thinking. The huge popularity of the universalism-endorsing book and recent movie The Shack is evidence that millions within Christendom have become enamored with that philosophy. As enlightened as they may see themselves, they appear to be oblivious to the fact that if everyone gets saved, there is no point to the gospel.
T. A. McMahon