I do hope we are not writing in a vacuum here, and that some other members of the Fellowship may feel free to intervene and put us right if we err.
We are both right to be worried about the possibility of veering into Indifferentism or Universalism, because they do seem the besetting temptations of saying that God is love; modern man tends to forget those passages about judgement!
I have raised on another thread here the question of 'Purgatory' partly because it seems to me like a Catholic scholastic 'add on' to the teaching of the early Fathers, who were happy enough with one final Judgement, and saw God's love for us as so immense that the Blood of Christ washes us clean of all our sins if
we receive Him. It is in knowing what 'receive' Him means that we need (or so it seems to me) the Church.
Those Protestants to say they have received Christ as their Saviour and who confess His Holy Name, what to make of them? They feel
they have had a genuine encounter with the Risen Lord, but how can they be sure? How, too, can they grow in the Lord?
I don't want to make any comments here that seem to dismiss any one's experiences, and ask these questions in the light of our discussion.
Quote:I wonder if we may use the agape of God as a 'reference point' whereby we may recognize each other?
I think we have to - we are called to love one another- as He loves us. When I contemplate that I shiver a little; He laid down His life so that sinners should have life, and life abundant. In the real sense to that abused word, 'awesome'. How can I not worship Him? How can I not love Him - He loved me first?
In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. (1 John 4:10)