Bisbee’s Why I Am a Universalist, part seven and last

5. Universalism believes in the final harmony of all souls with God. This is the conclusion of the whole matters as I have already indicated in my opening remarks. There remains to say but this: We are all facing eternity. We must go into the next life exactly as we leave this. If we have used our opportunities here, we enter there rejoicing in the reward of our spiritual possessions; if we have wasted our opportunities here, we enter there with shame and sorroe and suffering for our lack which we can no longer hide. We enter there with much or little of eternal life, to begin anew. We must face there the Judgment day to which every human soul must come. But it is the absolutely just judgment of God, which is all we can ask. And we should remember that in this judgment, when the evil is divide from the good, the line of cleavage must not fall between men, dividing those men who are bad from those men who are good, for that can not be done, for all are bad in some measure and all who are good in some measure, but the line of cleavage must fall through every individual man, dividing that which is good in the man from that which is evil in him. And this judgment is the judgment of our Heavenly Father, who reighns thre as He reigns here, and His nature does not change. As His love is here in this world, with tireless energy struggling for our salvation through every appointed means, so will He seek His lost one everywhere, seek not until weary and discouraged, but until the lost is found.

I am a Universalist because I believe in a God who is infinitely perfect, who in perfect love conceived of this creation, in perfect wisdom planned, and with perfect power will execute and bring to its final good. In carrying out this divine plan He uses the best means; He sends His Son to be the divine teacher and exemplar; His Spirit illuminates and inspires; He rewards virtue and punishes sin; and continues to show His perfect will until all men shall see that His will is best and turn to it of their own free will, and at last there shall be one people and God Himself shall be their God.

There is a completeness and beauty and satisfaction and inspirtation in this view of a God of universal perfection, whose universal purpose shall find a universal fulfilment. In it are solved the problems of evil, for we see that evil has an end, sin shall be finished and everlasting righteousness be brought in and God shall be all in all.

And, too, in carrying comfort to sorrowing hearts does Universalism rise triumphant; for, without violating its faith, it can comfort every heart, by telling that the life that has gone out, perhaps in shadow, has not gone to everlasting separation, but that through wandering wide and long, throuh paths of trial and sorrow and chastening and pain, loving hearts shall come home to the Father’s house, the door of which can never close as long as a single child of His remains without.

I am a Universalist because I am a Christian, and my faith in God and His Christ, the Saviour, will not let me ship short of a successful consummation — that the most wretched prodical of us all shall sometime come to himself in the far country to which his sin has led him, and turn with eager feet and repentant heart to his Father’s house.

And now, brothers and sisters, I have told youo why I am a Universalist. Had I the time I should like to tell you further of Universalist observance of the holy sacraments, its inspiration to practical service in this great vineyard of the Lord where laborers are so needed, but I close with this one word of appeal for unity among the Christian forces, and that the Universalists be not excluded from the ranks simply because they believe that the cause for which we are all enlisted will be successful in the end. And when you cal the roll of the great army of Christ forget not to number among the loyal soliders a band of pioneers, way on the frontier, who in faith have incribed upon their banner, “Victory for Christ.”

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