Continued from Sweetse’s Universalism Explained, part three
Jesus has taught us that God is our Father. He is the loving Father of all mankind, who makes His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust; and therefor His purpose is that all men shall be saved. “I exhort therefore,” says St. Paul, “that first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men; for this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour, who will have all men to be saved, and come unto the knowledge of the truth [“] (I Tim. 2:1, 3, 4). That is God’s purpose in regard to mankind, that they all shall be saved. As a loving God, a Heavenly Father, He could not have any other purpose.
What does any worthy father desire with reference to to his offspring? He wishes them to grow up into true manhood and womanhood; and he therefore desires to save them from whatsoever would hinder them from attaining thereto. Exactly that is what God, who is the Father of all men, desires and purposes in regard to His offspring. He desires them to become perfect, to grow into godliness, to become more and more like Him in character till at last they become holy as He is holy. “Be ye holy,” He says, “for I am holy;” and again “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect.” And because such is His desire and purpose concerning them, He desires to save them from whatsoever would hinder them from attaining that destiny; and therefore most of all from sin.