(‘Radical’ author) David Platt on Rob Bell and the church – „Intellectual universalism is dangerous” but „functional universalism is worse.”

Dr. David Platt in India.

(source of quote in title here)

For those at Brook Hills (or beyond) who may not be familiar with recent debate concerning Rob Bell and universalism, there is much discussion at present among professing Christians concerning whether or not those without Christ will really experience eternal damnation when they die. I offer some thoughts here from India. Yes, let’s fight universalism with our words. But let’s also fight universalism with our lives.

David Platt on his journey through India (March 18 update)

Overwhelming lostness. These are the only words that come to my mind when I consider what we witnessed at the Ganges River. According to Hinduism, the Ganges is the most sacred of all rivers. The “holiest” cities of Hinduism rest along its banks. Every year, scores of Hindus travel to the Ganges to wash themselves in its water. By simply washing in the Ganges, they believe that they can be cleansed of all evil and receive passage into heaven. Last year, in one month alone, during the festival of Kumbha Mela, over 50 million Hindus traveled near to the place where I am standing in this video below to bathe in the Ganges. Ironically, this river is considered by others to be one of the dirtiest rivers of the world. A recent article in The Economist called the Ganges River a “brown soup of excrement and industrial effluents.”

All of this to say…it was overwhelming to come to this site and to see masses of people—from all over India and around the world—flocking to filthy water that they hope will cleanse them from all their sin and sickness. As I looked across the river, I was gripped by the grace of Christ, whose blood alone can wash away sin, and I was overwhelmed by the need of those whose minds have been so blinded from seeing the salvation that only comes from Him.

We were not able to stay at the Ganges long, for we were on the way to catch a plane to another city. We have now arrived at this other city in eastern India, and we are about to go into a very poor, rural here to gather together with about 400-500 villagers. As you go to bed this evening, we will be going out to preach the gospel in this village. Amidst overwhelming lostness, please pray that God will show His power in the gospel by cleansing people of all their sin through the blood of Christ today.

“In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.” 2 Corinthians 4:4-5

Watch David Platt sermon ‘The cost of following Jesus‘ at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

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