Thursday, September 24, 2009

Victorian Theology From An Unlikely Source

Guess Who Wrote This:

"I can't love because I am ordered. Least of all can I love One who seems only to make me miserable here to torture me hereafter. Show me that He is good, that He is loveable, and I shall love Him without being told.

But does any preacher show this? He may say that God is good, but he shows Him to be very bad; he may say that God is 'Love', but he shows him to be hate, worse than any hate of man. As the Persian poet says; ‘If God punishes me for doing evil by doing me evil, how is he better than I?’ And it is hard to answer, for certainly the worst man would hardly torture his enemy, if he could, for ever. And unless God has a scheme that every man is to saved for ever, it is hard to say in what He is not worse than man; for all good men would save others if they could…

It is of no use saying that God is just, unless we define what justice is. In all Christian times people have said that ‘God is just’ and have credited him with an injustice such as transcends all human injustice that it is possible to conceive." - Florence Nightingale

I have a course in Modern British History (1830-present) and we're just about to get to the Crimean War, and I was reading about Florence Nightingale who was the famous nurse. Evidently she was also a lay theologian and penned this piece on universalism.

"But as for the cowardly, the faithless,* the polluted, the murderers, the fornicators, the sorcerers, the idolaters, and all liars, their place will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulphur, which is the second death." - Revelation 21:8 (NRSV)

1 comment:

  1. do you have a citation for this quote - would love to track it down.