Luke 2:10, Tidings of Great Joy
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
//You may recognize this verse in its Christmas theme; the baby Jesus brings hope of great joy, which, the verse says, shall be to “all people.”
Paul, writing in 1 Corinthians 15:22, echoes a similar sentiment: For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
This universal hope is again extended to “all” … that is, we assume, “all people.” Wonderful, isn’t it, how all are enveloped in great joy! But is it possible that even “all people” is too restrictive? Luke’s verse could be more literally translated as “all flesh.” After all, here is the promise, back in the Old Testament book of Joel:
Joel 2:28, And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh.
Not just people, but all flesh. Animals, too, perhaps. But what about the plant kingdom? Back to Joel, a few verses prior to this, about that wonderful day:
Be not afraid, O land; be glad and rejoice. Surely the LORD has done great things. Be not afraid, O wild animals, for the open pastures are becoming green. The trees are bearing their fruit; the fig tree and the vine yield their riches.
Makes me wonder if perhaps even Universal Christians aren’t universal enough!