What is Unitarian Universalism?Question: "What is Unitarian Universalism?"
Answer: Unitarian Universalism is a fairly small, yet widely influential, religious group. Having some 300,000 registered members, mostly in the United States, they are becoming more and more popular. Relativism, tolerance, and alternative lifestyles are all buzz words used by Unitarian Universalism.
The Unitarian Universalist name comes from their denial of the doctrine of the Trinity and their belief that all human beings gain salvation. According to Universalists, the mere idea someone might go to hell is not compatible with the character of a loving God. Its roots go all the way back to the sixteenth century when Unitarian beliefs became popular during the Reformation. Unitarian thought and Universal thought were merged together during the late eighteenth-century in America during the Age of Reason. The intellectual elite of that time refused to believe in such biblical teachings as total depravity and eternal damnation, but rather embraced the idea of a loving God who would never cause someone to suffer.
Adherents of Unitarian Universalism base their beliefs primarily upon their own experiences and are not committed to any one religious system. They believe that individuals have the right to decide for themselves what to believe in and that others should not infringe upon this right. As a result, one such believer might lean toward liberal Christianity, while another might lean toward New Age spirituality. There is no real dogma beyond tolerance—for everything except biblical Christianity. Unitarian Universalists view the Bible as a book of poetry, myth, and moral teaching, a completely human book and not truly the Word of God. They reject the Bible’s portrayal of a Triune God, leaving the concept of God up to each individual’s imagination.
To the Unitarian Universalist, Jesus was a good moral teacher, but nothing more. He is not considered to be divine, and every miracle associated with Him is rejected as being outside of human reason. Most sayings of Jesus recorded in the Bible are regarded as embellishments on the part of the authors. Among the Universalist beliefs: Jesus did not die to save mankind from sin, as man is not a fallen sinner; emphasis is placed on humankind's capacity for goodness; sin is completely relative, and the term itself is rarely used; man saves himself through personal improvement, salvation being a purely worldly experience, a "waking up" to the world around oneself. This is very important, for death is final. Most Unitarian Universalists deny the existence of an afterlife, so all we have on earth is all we'll ever get.
The Bible, on the other hand, refutes these falsehoods. Jesus does save mankind, which was in a fallen state since the Garden of Eden and separated from God by sin (John 10:15; Romans 3:24-25; 5:8; 1 Peter 2:24). Man is not good, but sinful and hopelessly lost. It is only through the grace of God and faith in the shed blood of Christ on the cross that mankind can be reconciled to a holy, transcendent God (Genesis 2:16-17; 3:1-19); John 3:36; Romans 3:23; 1 Corinthians 2:14; Ephesians 2:1-3; 1 Timothy 2:13-14; 1 John 1:8).
Unitarian Universalism has nothing in common with biblical Christianity. It is a false gospel, its teachings are contrary to the Bible, and its members strongly oppose traditional, biblical Christian beliefs (while purporting to be free of discrimination or prejudice of any kind). The Bible clearly refutes Unitarian Universalism on all the major points of its teachings.
Recommended Resource: The Kingdom of the Cults, revised and updated edition
More insights from your Bible study - Get Started with Logos Bible Software for Free!
What is the Universal Life Church?
What is Unitarianism?
What is the Unity School of Christianity?
What is the Unification Church?
What is Biblical Unitarianism?
Questions about Cults and Religions
What is Unitarian Universalism?