About Me

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Robin Parry is the husband of but one wife (Carol) and the father of the two most beautiful girls in the universe (Hannah and Jessica). He also has a lovely cat called Monty (who has only three legs). Living in the city of Worcester, UK, he works as an Editor for Wipf and Stock — a US-based theological publisher. Robin was a Sixth Form College teacher for 11 years and has worked in publishing since 2001 (2001–2010 for Paternoster and 2010– for W&S).

Sunday, 31 May 2015

Rethinking Hell Conference—discount!

I am really excited about the fast-approaching Rethinking Hell Conference to be held at Fuller Theological Seminary, June 18–20.

There are some key folk representing all of the three main Christian views on hell there.

I mean, Jerry Walls! Wow. His new book, Heaven, Hell, and Purgatory (Brazos, 2015), is really excellent (though we disagree on the freewill defence). Given that Jerry defends eternal hell against universalism you'd be surprised how close our views are.

Oliver Crisp! Dudes! That guy rocks.

Eric Reitan and John Kronen! Weep for joy!

Brad Jersak! Sweet!

David Instone-Brewer on the rabbis. That one will be fascinating. David knows his rabbinincs.

And a whole host of other folk who seem to be genuinely interesting.


You can see the whole programme at the website here.

It is not too late to book. In fact, I think that there is currently a $25 discount code available.



Wednesday, 20 May 2015

The value of matter (John Damascene)

“I do not worship matter: I worship the creator of matter who became matter for my sake, who willed to take his abode in matter, who worked out my salvation through matter. . . . Because of this I salute all remaining matter with reverence.”

John Damascene (Imag. 1.16)

Thursday, 7 May 2015

Rethinking Hell Conference 2015

I am really looking forward to the Rethinking Hell conference in June. They have very generously invited me to speak in defence of universal salvation (and, if I am feeling a little naughty, in critique of annihilation). I think I'll be given a thorough though gracious grilling!

There are some good folk there. I am especially looking forward to seeing some old friends, but also looking forward to making new ones.

Must say that I am impressed by the folk at Rethinking Hell, even though we have very different views on the subject of hell.


Tuesday, 5 May 2015

"It is finished!" What is finished?

I have always been told—and have always believed—that when Jesus cried, "It is finished!" he meant that his work in bearing the sins of the world was completed.

But it struck me about ten minutes ago that there is a problem with this: when Jesus uttered those words he was not dead (obviously). But the church affirms that Christ died for our sins. So it cannot literally be true that his cross-work was completed when he said those words. That was not finished—at least not in every respect.

This has some bearing on what we say about Christ's descent into Hades. This ancient belief has received a range of interpretations over the centuries, but the most basic division in the interpretations is between (a) the views in which Christ was thought to be among the dead as the victor proclaiming his triumph and (b) those in which he was among the deceased as one who "stood" in solidarity with the dead, suffering death's humiliation and Godforsakenness. Now one argument against the latter range of views is that Christ's humiliation ended on the cross—after all, he said that it was finished. So the descent could only be a victorious descent.

But if the words "It is finished!" do not mean that Christ has no more sin-bearing then the way is opened up to see the descent as an integral part of Christ's humiliation—his being dead.

That said, I see no reason why we need to play off (a) and (b) against each other. I think that the descent is a pivot element in the story and can be seen both in terms of humiliation and exaltation, cross and resurrection. That's for another time.

Anyway, here is my question: what is finished?