Substitionary death of Christ

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by 4His_glory, Apr 11, 2006.

  1. 4His_glory

    4His_glory
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    As Baptist we hold dear to the truth that Christs death was subsitionary- that is that he actually died in the place of sinners and satisfied all the justice of God.

    Yet how can we reconcile this with the belief of many Bapitsts that that Christ's death was also universal in scope without effecting salvtion to every single person on earth? If we answer with "Sinners must accept Christ's payment of sins" then does not this condition of acceptance by nature make substitutionary attonment an immpossibility?

    In other words, shouldn't substitionary attonment be an impossibilty with a conditional attonment? If Christ died in the place of sinners and actually paid their penalty for their sins on the cross, why must sinners pay for that penalty again in hell?

    The only possible answer one could give to this question then is that Christ died not for the sins of certain individuals (substitionary attonment) but instead died for "sin" and faced the penalty that any sinner should face for their sin. If this were the case then it is not the death of Christ that saves but God saves the sinner on the basis of his desicion not for anything Christ did on the cross. This is not substitionary attonment, but conditional attonment- that is that upon the condtion of ones acceptance of Christ he is saved not by anything Christ actually did on the cross for him since Christ suffered equally for the person who accepts and the person who does not.

    But as Baptist we beleive the Bible teaches that Christ actually took the place of sinners on the cross (Rm. 5:8). But many Baptists really believe this? I submit that they do not (I am not trying to offend anyone here ok ;) ). Instead they believe in conditional attonment as described above. To accept that Christ dided as an acutall substitute for sinners and paid for their sin on the cross to save them, demands what some would call particualar redemption.
     
  2. Andy T.

    Andy T.
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  3. 4His_glory

    4His_glory
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    Thanks for the sites Andy. Wayne Grudem explains various theories of attonment in his systamatic theology as well.

    I guess what I was trying to say that as historic Baptists, many woul claim to hold to substitionary attonment, when in fact they are actually advocation somthing entirely different. I guess what I wanted was a call for consistency.
     
  4. npetreley

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    Excellent point.

    On someone's recommendation (I forget who, but it was in one of these threads) I bought The Apologetics Group DVD "Amazing Grace". It's a great set of 2 DVDs.

    The DVD content raises this very issue, and examines it from several perspectives. It points out that partial atonement is the consequence of both Arminianism and Calvinism. In the former, it limits the power of atonement. In the latter, it limits the intent.

    What really surprised me is that one Arminian author (the name escapes me) attempts to correct modern day Arminians by pointing out that true Arminianism does not declare that Christ died for our sins. It simply states that Christ suffered for us (whatever that means). If anyone can point me to more information on this view, I'd appreciate it, because I'm baffled by it.

    Oh, and yes, the DVD does contain a pretty funny treatment of "all" by Dr. James Kennedy. It also demolishes all of the free willer quotes about "the whole world". My favorite (just because it's funny) went something like this:

    I paraphrase: "I wonder how many were registered from the Yucatan peninsula? How about China?"

    Interesting that the NIV interprets this (IMO correctly, although I'm not a fan of the NIV in general) as the Roman world, even though the Greek does not say Roman, it says "all the world".
     
  5. npetreley

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    You won't get consistency except from Reformed Baptists. You are correct in stating that if atonement is conditional upon our acceptance, then it is not substitutionary, at least not in a universal sense. Jesus could not have died for all of our sins if we can still go to hell for the sin of unbelief (failure to accept His offer). That presents a problem for those who interpret "whole world" in 1 John 2:2 as meaning every person without exception.

     
  6. 4His_glory

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    Another instance of when all doesn't mean every one is regarding John the Baptist when we read "then went all Judea and were baptized of him in Jordan." Did every single person in Judea get baptized by John, or some from every part?

    Also there is this one "...the whole world is gone after Him." speaking of Christ. Did the whole world go after Christ?
     
  7. npetreley

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    Here's another one...

    Like, for example, Herod, the Pharisees...
     
  8. 4His_glory

    4His_glory
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    I would like to here some "free-willers" give their kind thoughts regarding the OP.
     
  9. Marcia

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    I am not responding as a "free-willer," only to ask a question.

    Can it not be said that Jesus' death paid the penalty for all sins but his righteousness is not applied except upon faith in Christ?
     
  10. 4His_glory

    4His_glory
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    Did He pay the penalty for sins or for sinners? There is a difference. I believe He paid the penalty for sinners. What you describe would be similar to the conditional atonment as described in the OP.
     
  11. Me4Him

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    limited atonement presents a problem of "JUSTICE" during "JUDGMENT".

    "IF" Jesus only died for the sins of those save, in Judgement the unsaved can "legally claim" prejudice as their defense, "you died for their sin, but not mine".

    However "IF", Jesus died for "All sin", and the "Condition" of "believing in Jesus" is imposed before granting salvation, then "Believing" is the only obstacle between Man and salvation.

    Jesus death for sins of the unsaved wasn't "worthless", leaving someone else to pay again, as suggested.

    Just as his death for the sin of "Believers" "JUSTIFIES", to Righteousness

    so does his death for the sins of the Unbelievers, "JUSTIFIES", to condemnation.

    Condemnation isn't because of sin, but because people through "unbelief" REMAIN SINNERS even though Jesus died for all sin.

    Limited atonement leads to Prejudice, (respect of persons) and no justification to condemn.


    Ro 2:11 For there is no respect of persons with God.

    Pr 24:23 These things also belong to the wise. It is not good to have respect of persons in judgment.

    Jas 2:9 But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors.
     
  12. ituttut

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    I believe you see the problem, but have not identified it. I’m not sure this will satisfy you, but as presented, you are correct, for there is contradiction. I believe you describe many Christians in the Baptist denomination, as well as other denominations. When we mix “conditional” salvation with “unconditional” salvation, we cannot make sense of it.

    We of the “Body Church” meet those of the “Kingdom Church” at the Cross.

    The “un-conditional side” of OSAS should remove the contradiction.

    I don’t believe today there is “conditional atonement (salvation)” for this is only for those before the Cross. They had to endure until the end to await the Cross. Their “subsitionary” was accomplished by the blood of animals, that could only cover up their sins, to await the saving “subsitionary” blood of Jesus Christ”

    All before looked “forward” to the Cross by faith in God. We go “back” to the Cross where we die with Him, availing ourselves of He that took over the Temporary Substitute, inserting Himself in that “subsitionary” position, effectively removing all our sins between here and there. It is through His faith that we avail the cleansing, and whosoever will may come.

    Those sins of ours do not exist anymore, which means we are OSAS. It is at the Cross that we died with Him, making us dead to the law, thus dead to sin. Those that looked forward to the Cross, and endured until the end meet Him there which blood removed all their sins, which before had only been covered. While living they had a “conditional” salvation, while ours is “unconditional” for as we live we are today in the Body of Christ spiritually, awaiting to be made like Him in Body.

    Christian faith, ituttut
     
  13. J.R.Maddox

    J.R.Maddox
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    I love the Apologetics! I espeacially love their parody of "Who's your daddy" by Toby Keith

    uhhhh....oh....wrong Apologetics

    NEVER MIND

    (Just a joke guys....)

    J
     
  14. StraightAndNarrow

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    And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered.I paraphrase: "I wonder how many were registered from the Yucatan peninsula? How about China?"

    Interesting that the NIV interprets this (IMO correctly, although I'm not a fan of the NIV in general) as the Roman world, even though the Greek does not say Roman, it says "all the world". [/QUOTE]

    Everything I've ever read from that period talks about "all the world" when in fact the meaning was "all the world known to the author." How could Caesar send out a decree to tax the American Indians if he didn't know that they existed?
     
  15. J.D.

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    I paraphrase: "I wonder how many were registered from the Yucatan peninsula? How about China?"

    Interesting that the NIV interprets this (IMO correctly, although I'm not a fan of the NIV in general) as the Roman world, even though the Greek does not say Roman, it says "all the world".
    </font>[/QUOTE]I'm glad to enjoyed that DVD, makes me glad I mentioned it (he says as he humbly takes credit).

    And you didn't say enough about Kennedy's bit - it really is a stand-up comic routine worth the price of the DVD. "I always say that - no I don't, but I always say always when I mean sometimes - or do I? Everyone talks that way - no they don't..." You gotta get it.
     
  16. DeeJay

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    I do not consider my self a free-willer but I am also not willing to jump thru hoops to change the meaning of words like, world, so that the Bible fits my theology.

    Jesus purchased our debt on the cross. We owed a debt that could only be satisfied by our death and eternity in hell. Jesus purchased all of our debts and we are his to do with what he wants. He has set new conditions on us. Have faith in Him or do not. If we place our faith in Him, He will bring us to Heaven. If we do not we will go to Hell.

    Jesus purchased us by substituting His life for our debt. He owns us and can place what ever conditions he chooses on us. The Bible clearly says those conditions are faith in Christ.

    All of our debts were paid. Nobody will go to hell because of what Adam and Eve did. People will go to Hell because they have not placed their faith in Christ.
     
  17. johnp.

    johnp.
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    Hello Me4Him.

    He paid my debt my debt has been paid. If He paid everyone's debt then going to Hell is for the angels alone.

    Therefore, I swore to the house of Eli, `The guilt of Eli's house will never be atoned for by sacrifice or offering.' " 1 Sam 3:14. Limited atonement.

    RO 9:14 What then shall we say? Is God unjust? Not at all! 15 For he says to Moses, "I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion." 16 It does not, therefore, depend on man's desire or effort, but on God's mercy.

    If? If Jesus died for everyone's sins then 1 Samuel 3:14 is wrong isn't it? There is no condition but a man must be born again before he can understand.

    Anyone would think that God chose us because He respected us. :cool: He did not respect us but chose us for His glory not for ours, but it becomes so. 1JN 3:1 How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.

    john.
     
  18. DeeJay

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    If I buy your debt, as in a morgage or such, I can then re-negotiate your payments. I does not mean you are debt free.

    If you owe $1000 a month for 30 years. I buy your debt from the bank. I now own your debt. You are not debt free. I can now send you a letter saying Johnp, I own your debt you must send me a thank you card on my birthday and I will forgive your debt. If you do not send the card you can start making payments to me.

    Of course the debt Jesus paid for us we could not pay. And the requirement is that we have faith in him before our debt is forgiven. Jesus subsituted his life to purchase our debt. He owns it and we are not forgiven our debt until we meet his conditions. Faith in Christ.

    Again, just because somebody buys your debt does not mean you are debt free. Just somebody else owns it.
     
  19. rsr

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    That's an odd tack to take if you believe in substitutionary atonement. The debt was originally owed to God; even if it transferred like a mortgage, it still would be owed to the same creditor.

    On the cross, Jesus said "It is finished," which in Greek carries the connotation of "paid in full."

    And in Colossians 2:13-14, Paul writes that the debt is not transferred but is cancelled.

    "And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross." (ESV)
     
  20. npetreley

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    The point is that free willers are guilty of demanding that "the whole world" must mean "every person without exception" simply because it supports their assumptions. "The world", "the whole world", etc., mean different things depending on context, and whether or not the author was using hyperbole. There's no way you can simply assert that it must mean "every person without exception" unless the text demands that interpretation, and even then you can't assert that it means "every person without exception" if there is other text to contradict that interpretation.

    The fact is, there are other texts that contradict that interpretation.

    For example: What does "whole world" mean when John says "He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world." Does it mean every person without exception? No, it cannot mean that. Why? Because there are texts that contradict that interpretation, and the Bible does not contradict itself.

    "Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” The word is MANY, not ALL.

    "And He was numbered with the transgressors, And He bore the sin of many, And made intercession for the transgressors."

    The word is MANY, not ALL.

    Therefore "the whole world" must mean something else, most likely "everyone without distinction (both Jews and Gentiles)" rather than "everyone without exception".
     

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