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EMINENT COMMENTATO CO
WHO HAVE BELIEVED IN PUNISHMENT AFTER DEATH; WHEREIN
THEY HAVE AGREED WITH
INTERPRETATION OF SCRIPTURES
BY LUCIUS R. PAIGE,
PASTOR OF THE FIRST UNIVERSALIST SOCIETY, IN CAMBRIDGE.
PUBLISHED BY T. WHITTEMORE, 40, CORNHILL,
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1833. BY LUCIUS R. PAIGE,
in the Clerk's office of the District Court of Massachusetts.
MANY passages occur in the New Testament, which are understood by some to indicate endless torment in the future life; and by others, merely severe temporal judgments. It has often been objected to the interpretations given of these passages by Universalists, that they are forced or strained;-wresting the Scriptures from their true import. And not unfrequently, it has been gravely remarked, that if Universalists are correct in their expositions of Scripture, it is exceedingly strange that none of the pious and learned divines of the two last centuries, should have discovered the true meaning of the controverted passages. I do not mean that any reputable critic has urged this apology for an argument: but it is a favorite theme with many laymen, as the reader must be fully aware and some clergymen have not hesitated to adopt this expedient to persuade their hearers that the views exhibited of the Scriptures by Universalists, must necessarily be false:-that they are adopted and defended, merely to give some semblance of support to a favorite theory.
To remove this objection, and to exhibit the true state of the case, is the principal object of the following pages. It will be discovered that the 'pious and learned divines,' who have studied so deeply, and written so extensively, as to acquire for themselves the reputation of profound theologians, although they believed in the endless misery of the wicked, have yet given interpretations of the Scriptures, similar to those now given by Universalists. Hence it follows that the charge, alleged against Universalists, of thus interpreting Scripture merely to support a favorite theory, is unfounded and unjust:-for orthodox commentators have given the same interpretations in