by W.B. Screws

The Pilgrim's Messenger

"Have a pattern of sound words which you hear from me, in faith and love
which are in Christ Jesus."--11 Timothy 1:13
Published Monthly By W. B. SCREWS, Glennville, Georgia
Twenty-five Cents a Year

Volume XXIII

November, 1943

Number 4

Entered at the postoffice at Glennville, Ga., as second-class matter.

 Under the above heading, a brother for whom I have the most profound respect, publishes an editorial, purporting to show that if Election is a Bible doctrine, then the teaching which says all mankind will be saved, cannot be true. 

First, let me say that I do not teach "Universalism," any more than this brother teaches "Adventism."  He believes in the future advent of Christ, as Adventists do, but this does not constitute him an Adventist.  I believe that God will, by His grace, through the sacrifice of Christ, eventually save al mankind, but this does not make me a Universalist.  That denomination ignores the exceeding sinfulness of sin, and the value of the blood of Christ.  One of their teachers said, some time age, "Jesus was not the Savior of sinners, and did not claim to be."  I do not subscribe to such teaching.  Therefore, I object to the term, Universalism, when applied to me and others who believe in God's ultimate.  

We call ourselves the ecclesia.  This is God's way of designation those who are in Christ.  We rarely use the word, "church" because it has come to mean simply a congregation of professed believers.  Ecclesia means the out-called, and cannot include any professor who is not vitally joined to Christ.  One saint is the out-called.  A million saints are the out-called.  We are not members of a church.  We are not even members of the ecclesia which is His body.  We ARE the ecclesia, and are members of the body of Christ.  Nor do we claim to be the only ones who are members of the body.  They are found in various denominations, and many are not connected with any organization.  

Election, or selection, or choice, is certainly a scriptural doctrine.  If a farmer has six mules and his neighbor has six, he cannot select all his mules to do a certain piece of work.  He can use them all, but there is no selection about it.  Nor can he chose his mules, and leave his neighbors.  Choice is not to be exercised, unless one chooses among His own.  He may select two of his animals for a certain fob and leave the others in the barn for the time.  

If all humanity belong to God, He has the right to choose certain ones for certain purposes.  But if half or any other portion of the human family belong to "the devil," and God saves all His and leaves those who belong to the devil, "to go to hell," no choice is exercised.  He has no right to touch the devil's people!  

If God chooses one and leaves another, He had the right to do the opposite.  All advocates of election admit that God had the right to choose those whom He did not choose, instead of the ones He did Select.  Upon what is that right based?  On the fact that all humanity are His!  If they are not His, whose are they?  And if they are not His now, how did He lose possession of them?  Did my brother ever read, "All souls are mine," Ezek. 18:4?  

All humanity being God's, He chose some to be His nation; in that nation He selected some to be prophets, others to be priests, etc.; and of the nation He chose some to be the ecclesia which is the bride of the Lambkin.  These He hinds to Christ, John 6:37.  Of that number, He chose some to be apostles. 

Another group, without respect to nationality, are chosen in Christ before the disruption of the world, to be the ecclesia which is the body of Christ, Eph. 1.  Of that number, Paul and others are chosen to be apostles—"the last apostles," I Cor. 4:9.  Others are chosen to be teachers, etc.  

They tell us none of the non-elect will be saved.  Well, we are all no-elect in some relation.  God chose Christ, out of all His creation, to be the Savior, Isa. 42:1.  In this relation He is the elect and all the human family are non-elect.  God elected Israel to be His nation.  All the rest of humanity are non-elect in this relation.  Part of Israel are given to Christ, and even all the rest of that nation are non-elect in this particular.  He chose the Twelve as apostles, leaning the rest of those whom He gives to Christ, as well as the rest of humanity, on the outside.  Members of the body of Christ are chosen, and in this relation, even the "church" or ecclesia of Israel is among the non-elect.  We should measure our words, before we say that no non-elect. will be saved.  

Election or choice is to an office.  The elect among Israel are to be the bride.  For this purpose Christ gives them eonian life, John 6:40.  The Greek word used here is AIONION, not eternal.  They will have life during that part of the eons that follows the establishing of the kingdom.  They will be in an office; they will be reigning with Christ for the AIONS of the AIONS, or, to put it in English, for the eons of the eons.  At the consummation of the eons they will not die, but they will cease to reign.  They shall continue to live, but it cannot be called eonian life when there are no eons.  

The ecclesia which is His body are chosen to an office.  We shall be associated with Christ in the administration of the complement of the eras, then He is heading up the universe in Himself, Eph. 1:10, 11.  We are to be an "about-being people," Titus 2:14.  The Greek word is PERI (about) OUSION (being)—PERIOUSION.  It does not mean "peculiar," nor yet, "Special."  We are chosen to be about Christ in His reign, as the cabinet of the President of the United States is composed of people chosen to be about him.  We must have eonian life, in order to serve this propose.  When the eons are past we shall continue to have life, but it cannot be eonian.  We will have finished our official work by the time the eons are finished.  

In I Thess. 2:13 the apostle says, "God prefers you from the beginning, for salvation in hallowing of spirit and belief of the truth."  That is the way the elect are saved.  Others will be saved just as much by grace as we, but it will be after all need for faith has vanished.  It will not be in belief, or faith, but in sight.  They will be face to face with the Savior, and will actually see Him.  With us it is a matter of faith.  

My brother says in his editorial that it is not a matter of "what we think; but the question is, What does the word of God say?"  This is good.  But in the very same paragraph he quotes the words of Christ, "I will draw all men unto me," and then says the Lord did not mean that He would draw every individual, but that he would draw all classes.  Thus the brother, after quoting what the word of God says, proceeds to tell what he THINKS the Lord means!  Christ could have said "all classes," just as easily as my brother should say it.  The brother cannot possibly KNOW that the Lord means the opposite of what He says; he just THINKS so.  

My brother's position leaves the following passage, for which he cannot possibly have any use: "Therefore, as by the offense of one judgment came upon all men unto condemnation, even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life," Rom. 5:18.  "For as IN Adam all die, even so IN Christ shall all be made alive," I Cor. 15:22.  Don't try to say "BY Christ all shall be made alive."  The Book says "IN."  And remember that if anyone is IN Christ, he is a new creature, according to the King James Version.  All men are to be mad new creatures, if all are to made alive IN Christ.  "This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, Who will have all men to be saved and to come into the knowledge of the truth,"  I Tim. 2:3, 4.  In the absence of any passage which says God WILL NOT HAVE ALL MEN TO BE SAVED, it would be well to accept this passage as it reads, and not try to tell what it "means."  

The choice of some, insures the blessing of all, just as the President, when he chooses his cabinet, insures the well-being of every citizen of the United States.  For one or another cabinet member has a job that touches every profession among the people.  

We are not chosen to go to heaven and spend eternity singing.  We are elected to be associated with Christ in His administration of the heavens, as the elect among Israel are to be associated with the sovereignty of the earth.  This is eonian, and will cease for a greater glory, with all mankind and celestial creatures, when the eons are past.  For not only shall all mankind be saved, the universe is to be reconciled to God through the blood of the Cross, Col. 1:20.  What a glorious outlook! 

Judgment, death, "hell," etc., will not interfere with God's ultimate. These are processes—steps on the way to the goal.  "Hell" will be cast into the lake of fire, just after the judging at the white throne.  Judgment will be over then.  Death is to be abolished at the "end," King James Version, and God is to be All in all, I Cor. 15:22-28. 

If death, judgment and hell cannot interfere with God reaching His goal, surely election will not interfere with it.  Its junction is the opposite.  Yes, Election and the salvation of the entire human race and the reconciliation of the universe are all taught in the word of God.  

Yes, Election and the salvation of the entire human race and the reconciliation of the universe are all taught in the word of God.  

"Three Spheres of Blessing" will be discussed in the Messenger in an early issue, the Lord willing.  This is by request, and after considerable study of the subject. 

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