Tuesday, March 08, 2016

The Greater Number of People in Heaven, not Hell

For over twenty-five years I have believed the Bible teaches that God, by His grace, will redeem more sinners from the just judgment of hell than those who will experience hell as the just consequences of their rebellion against their Creator.

My interpretation of the Bible passages that indicate heaven will be more populated than hell is not unique. Charles Spurgeon wrote: 
"I believe there will be more in Heaven than in hell. If anyone asks me why I think so, I answer, because Christ, in everything, is to 'have the pre-eminence,' and I cannot conceive how He could have the pre-eminence if there are to be more in the dominions of Satan than in Paradise (C.H. Spurgeon's Autobiography, p. 174).
Wonderful theologians like Charles Hodge, Robert L. Dabney, W.G.T. Shedd, and B.B. Warfield have all believed the elect of God will number more than the reprobate. 

So too Southern Baptist theologian B.H. Carroll believed that the grace of God in salvation will exceed the holiness of God in judgment. He wrote in The Interpretation of the English Bible, Volume 10, page 207:
"So then if I were called on to answer, in light of the Bible teaching, this question: "At the judgment will the saved outnumber the lost?" I would reply by citing in contrast a Jewish opinion prevalent just before Christ was born, and a Christian opinion of the present day, and say frankly that I am inclined to the Christian opinion. The Jewish opinion is thus expressed twice in the apocryphal book of Esdras: "The kingdom on earth was made for many: the kingdom above for few," and "The number of the saved is like a drop to the wave. "Such is the Jewish opinion. The Christian opinion, expresed by one of the truly great expositors of this generation is: "The number of the finally lost will compare with the whole number saved about as the criminals in jails and penitentaries now compare with the free and law-abiding citizens of this county," For myself, without taking time just now to cite the scriptural basis of the judgment, I heartily cherish the Christian opinion."
Could it be God's purpose to redeem an innumerable company from every tribe, every kindred, every tongue and every nation to ensure that His grace ultimately and eternally triumphs over sin?

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