What is Conditionalism?

Short for “conditional immortality,” conditionalism is the view that immortality is granted only upon the condition of faith in Christ. This is contrary to the more popular view that all human beings (or their souls) are either 1. intrinsically immortal or 2. unconditionally bestowed immortality at the resurrection.



5 Responses to What is Conditionalism?

  1. Les Godbold says:

    Hi. I’m a 54 yr old guy. Started going back to church in 89. Alcoholism since age 13. Depression, anger, the usual. After 24 years of in and out of the church(but never giving up!) I’ve finally started to fall in love with Jesus. In the past year God has begun doing the things people told me God could do but just didn’t seem to be in the mood where I was concerned!:) I got off anti-depressants cold turkey, never felt better. I mean never. 40 year smoking habit gone in a second. I got wrecked by the Holy Spirit every day, many times a day, for like 6 months. I’ve got two little kids, 6 and 10, I can spend three hours in the pool with them doing nothing but playing, a testimony of walking out of the bondage of self. (usually I would play for 30 minutes then go read my useless novel). I laugh, a lot. I’m crying right now just thinking about how easy my laughter comes!:) I’ve never heard of “conditionalism”. I just know back in ’90 I asked God about eternal punishment, ’cause I thought it was just bogus. As soon as I asked, John 3:16 popped into my head, and then the passage from Revelation, “and death and hell were cast into the lake of fire, and this is the second death”. There was my answer, the lost perish, their souls are destroyed. I knew my bible, even though I quit going to our Baptist church when I turned 13. I would read my bible drunk, high on coke, whatever. I loved my bible. So now, after all these years I am in love with Jesus, it’s so cool it’s beyond words. Anyway, I’ve never been to these web sites, I never went to seminary, I’ve never really even talked about my revelation about the real purpose of the lake of fire. I feel I must reach out now after a recent church service. My pastor, whom I love, was preaching on fasting, a small excerpt was this, “….Jonathan Edwards fasted before his famous sermon, “Sinners in the hand of an angry God.” It is lauded as one of the great sermons of all time, I think it is one of the most repulsive sermons of all time. My Father is dangling people over a burning hell? Really? The entire thrust of our church is to reveal the heart of the Father. It was in this church I received the revelation of how my Father truely feels about Leslie, heard it many times, but not rec’d it. After that the gates of heaven opened wide. Even though I think Spurgeon was about two steps removed from the morons in Salem, Mass., my faith and beleif have not been shaken. I’m almost afraid to talk to my pastor about this. The dudes like half my age and he crazy loves Jesus, lord, I pray he doesn’t beleive in the dungeon of eternal torture. How could he? How can you know the Father and still beleive that? Thank you for suffering my super long comment. Any feedback would be appreciated.

    • Ronnie says:

      Thank you for your story Les. Have you talked to your pastor yet? Chances are that he does not believe in everlasting torture, but rather takes the contemporary “soft” view of everlasting separation from God. While not ideal, it’s at least an improvement!

      And you’re right; “death” and “perish” do not—and never will—mean “kept alive forever in torment.”

  2. Les Godbold says:

    Thanks for your reply Ronnie. I have talked to my pastor, even though he doesn’t like to be called “pastor”! I use the term cause I still haven’t gotten used to “servant leader”! Anyway, he is big on the modern church being delivered from religious bondage. He sez the Fathers’ cry in this hour is to “Let My People Go”. Which I’m totally I on board with, I spent 24 yrs in and out of the church, looking for Jesus. So, I’m like, if you’re gonna say “Let My People Go”, don’t you think it would behoove us to deliver them from this sadistic doctrine of eternal damnation? I then referenced the above Spurgeon litany of S.I.T.H.O.A.A.G. He said that sermon was for the lost, not the church, and that the lost are in danger of hell. So I say, Yeah, I agree, the law is the law, and if you are not redeemed by the blood you are gonna pay the piper. The lost will suffer and pay their just recompense, and then they will DIE. Like dead dead.
    I shared that during all those years I struggled to find the Jesus of the bible, that I was hurting because of my sin, and the sin of my parents. Abandonment and shame issues from childhood plagued me with depression and anger and fear and hopelessness. I mentioned, that sometimes, had I not had the anesthisia of drugs to dull the pain, i would have killed myself. If Mr. Spugeon had come along and told me I was being dangled over a pit of fire, I would have told THAT god to kiss my a**. What? I’m gonna get hurt cause I’m hurting? I’m gonna suffer pain because I cannot escape from pain? I’ve read most of the posts on this site, and you guys are really smart. Sometimes my head spins from the depths to which you guys dive! But I don’t have to read the arguments. I only know what I know. After living nearly half a century in darkness, I have been delivered into His marvelous light. I believe perhaps that I found Jesus a very long time ago, but I had a particular road to travel to be shaped for His purpose. It was long, and painful. But it brought me to the end of my self. I was tapped out, finis. I could not take one more step in this world without divine intervention. And we know what happened then. Only one thing do I desire, to gaze upon His beauty. I never did get past “then death and hell were cast into the lake of fire” with my servant freind. His hand was the one God used to bring me in to my rest. I was afraid to go any further with it, I was afraid of what he would say. How would I rebuke this mighty man of God? And he is one. I’ve been around the block many times. I’ve seen the real and the fake, and the wannabes, this dude is the genuine article. A disciple full of humiliy, and grace, and power. I’m sure we will finish the conversation one day, I don’t think I’ll do any rebuking. Again, thank-you for your time and thoughtful response.

  3. Pingback: More Views On Hell And Conditional Immortality | The Best of Belief

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