The logic of Talbott's universalism
"Consider the following inconsistent set of propositions:
- God's redemptive love extends to all human sinners equally in the sense that he sincerely wills or desires the redemption of each one of them.
- Because no one can finally defeat God's redemptive love or resist it forever, God will triumph in the end and successfully a accomplish the redemption of everyone whose redemption he se sincerely wills or desires.
- Some human sinners will never be redeemed but will instead be separated from God forever
(Universal Salvation? The Current Debate, ed. Robin A. Parry & Christopher H. Partridge [Cambridge, Eerdmans, 2003], p. 7 - cf. www.universalsalvation.net).
Of course, Talbott, as a universalist, rejects the third proposition.
Though my thoughts in this area are only preliminary, I remain as yet unconvinced of the universalist position on exegetical grounds (i.e. how does one deal with such passages as Gal 5:21, Rom 10:1, Mt 25 etc.). Nevertheless, Talbott's reasoning above causes pause for thought.
Which proposition would you reject? Or would you try to affirm them all? If so, why? Or would you understand the issues in relation to an entirely different scheme?