The Limitations of Holding Limited Atonement View

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by Baptist_Pastor/Theologian, Feb 19, 2005.

  1. Baptist_Pastor/Theologian

    Baptist_Pastor/Theologian
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2005
    Messages:
    437
    Likes Received:
    0
    In light of 1John 2:2 and 2Peter 2:1 I honestly do not see how one could hold to a limited atonement view. Yet, millions of born again believers do just that, and growing segment within the Baptist world as well. Anyone care to offer your thoughts on the matter?
     
  2. NateT

    NateT
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2000
    Messages:
    886
    Likes Received:
    0
    I find it interesting that men wiser than me and more knowledgable of the Bible than I have taken both sides.
     
  3. Baptist_Pastor/Theologian

    Baptist_Pastor/Theologian
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2005
    Messages:
    437
    Likes Received:
    0
    To further support the irony, both cannot be right it would seem. Christ cannot both have atoned for all humans and exclusively atoned for a select group. The law of non-contradiction comes into play in this case. At the same point in time A cannot be both A and non-A. Either Christ died for everyone or he did not. This presses the measure by which biblical truth is tenable. How can 2Pt. 2:1 and 1Jo. 2:2 mean anything other than universal atonement, which is not synonymous with universalism or salvation for all?
     
  4. Paul33

    Paul33
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2004
    Messages:
    2,434
    Likes Received:
    0
    I believe the failure to properly understand the atonement is the reason for the mistake.

    My view of Scripture is that if it makes perfect sense, I shouldn't have to read into the text different definitions for specific words. So, I agree, Jesus Christ is the atoning sacrifice for the sins of the whole world. But what does this verse teach? It teaches that Jesus Christ paid the penalty for the sins of the whole world.

    He literally died as a sacrifice for every person's sins. The verse does not teach, however, that every person's sins are forgiven. A person's sins are only forgiven when Christ makes intercession for that person at the Father's right hand. Isn't that what 1 John 2:1 says? We have one who speaks to the Father in our defense - Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. We have a high priest that intercedes for us, the book of Hebrews teaches.

    Therefore, what is misunderstood is the atonement process. There is both a sacrifice and an intercession. The sacrifice of Jesus on the cross was for the sins of the world. He paid the price for every person's sins. The intercession is only for the elect, those who will repent and confess that Jesus is Lord.

    R.T. Kendall has shown that this was the view of none other than John Calvin himself. This is not the view, however, of most who subscribe to the Westminster confession, according to Kendall. They fail to make a distinction between the sacrifice, which Christ provided on the cross, and the intercession, which Christ provides at the Father's right hand.
     
  5. Paul33

    Paul33
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2004
    Messages:
    2,434
    Likes Received:
    0
    In the OT, when the priest sacrificed the animal, was the animal an atoning sacrifice? Yes.

    But when were the sins of the people actually forgiven? When the priest entered the Holy of Holies.

    Jesus is both the atoning sacrifice and the priest who makes intercession.

    Jesus paid the penalty for sin for every person as the atoning sacrifice, but intercedes and applies that atonement at the Father's right hand for those who repent ( that is, his elect).
     
  6. IveyLeaguer

    IveyLeaguer
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2004
    Messages:
    666
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well said, Paul.
     
  7. Grasshopper

    Grasshopper
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2002
    Messages:
    3,348
    Likes Received:
    14
    John Gill explains it quite well from the Reformed view:

    but also for [the sins] of the whole world;

    the Syriac version renders it, "not for us only, but also for the whole world"; that is, not for the Jews only, for John was a Jew, and so were those he wrote unto, but for the Gentiles also. Nothing is more common in Jewish writings than to call the Gentiles (amle) , "the world"; and (Mlweh lk) , "the whole world"; and (Mlweh twmwa) , "the nations of the world"

    http://www.studylight.org/com/geb/view.cgi?book=1jo&chapter=002&verse=002
     
  8. HankD

    HankD
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2001
    Messages:
    15,181
    Likes Received:
    326
    I've heard this explanation before but IMO it doesn't fit in with john's other writings:

    1 John 5
    19 And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness.

    IMO "the whole world" means what is says.
    John knew the word "gentile" (John 7:35) and he didn't use it in 1 John 2:2 or 1 John 5:19..

    The problem with 1 John 2:2 appears to come out of a fear that God is going to save the whole world (wouldn't that be a shame).

    Propitiation: that is He is satisfied that the sin of the world has been taken away doesn't mean that the whole world is justified which only comes after faith in that propitiation is exercised by the believing heart.

    John 5
    2 And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.

    Which goes along with other universalphobia stemming from an apparent universalism in the Scriptures:

    1 Timothy 4:10 For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe.

    1 Corinthians 4:5 Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.

    2 Peter 2:1 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.

    We all belong to God fulfilling His purpose and to do with as He pleases, both those who are declared righteous and those who are not.

    Whether to be cast into the lake of fire or take up residence in the New Jerusalem.

    Proverbs 16:4 The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.


    HankD
     
  9. Paul33

    Paul33
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2004
    Messages:
    2,434
    Likes Received:
    0
    Good insight, Hank.

    I was wondering what to think of the post by Grasshopper. Jew/Gentile contrast could fit.

    But you solved the problem. How does John use the phrase "whole world" in the rest of his letter. Excellent. Thanks.
     
  10. OldRegular

    OldRegular
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Messages:
    22,678
    Likes Received:
    53
    Isn't applying the human logic of the law of noncontridiction to the Sovereign Grace of God in His Purpose to bring His Elect to Salvation a little foolish in light of the following Scripture:

    1 Corinthians 1:18-31
    18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.
    19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.
    20 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?
    21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.
    22 For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:
    23 But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness;
    24 But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.
    25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.

    26 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:
    27 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;
    28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:
    29 That no flesh should glory in his presence.
    30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:
    31 That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.
     
  11. Baptist_Pastor/Theologian

    Baptist_Pastor/Theologian
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2005
    Messages:
    437
    Likes Received:
    0
    OldRegular,

    Applying a law that helps us understand the substance of the discussion is not foolish. Trying to fit a square peg in a round hole would be. The passage you quote by no means eliminates the need to make sense. God is not a God of disorder but one of order. The Gospel is foolishness to those who are of the opinion that they do not need God. I think the point is that when philosophy says that religion is worthless it does not make it any less true. Jesus said you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free. What goes up must come down does not contradict the Gospel and neither does the law of non-contradiction. Granted there are some things that are beyond explanation. And God is certainly all powerful, knowing and present. Yet, when you read the Bible, each passage does not have a plurality of meaning. There may be a plurality of interpretations, but that does not mean that each one is valid, especially when they are in contradiction to one another.

    I am of the opinion that the Bible is inerrant and sufficient for salvation. The two passages in question, 1Jo.2.2 and 1Pt.2.1 seem to make a strong case for general atonement. Limited atonement is more of a theoretical discussion anyway because in the final analysis only those who believe will receive benefit of the atonement. However, no matter how you slice this one, you are going have serious issues to deal with. On the one hand, if you hold to limited atonement, there will be people who will die and go to hell without any offer of redemption. One might wonder why create someone just to send them to hell? However, if you go the route of general atonement, then in principle there will be those who died and went to hell with there sins atoned for. One might wonder in that case if the nature of the atonement was sufficient in order to bring about redemption?

    My main point is to bring the biblical argument to the table, because when you read the plain reading of these passages, it seems to argue general atonement. Now if you have to do hermeneutical gymnastics to get around a passage like 2Pt.2.1 or 1Jo.2.2 then I would say that you are in danger of isogesis and not exegesis. That is you might be reading into the passage what you want it to say, as you so ably did with your aforementioned 1 Cor. 1:18-31 passage.

    Shalom,

    Pastor Bill
     
  12. OldRegular

    OldRegular
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Messages:
    22,678
    Likes Received:
    53
    I know the difference between eisegesis and exegesis!

    I didn't read anything into 1 Corinthians 1:18-31, simply quoted it and pointed out that the wisdom behind the human logic that developed the law of noncontradiction may well be foolishness in the sight of God. It is obvious that God will not be deterred in His Purpose to bring His Elect to Salvation given such Scripture as:

    John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

    John 6:37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.


    Romans 8:29, 30
    29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
    30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.


    Ephesians 1:3-6
    3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
    4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
    5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
    6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.
     
  13. Paul33

    Paul33
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2004
    Messages:
    2,434
    Likes Received:
    0
    In the mind of God, when was the offer of salvation made?

    In the counsel of God's will, when did he decide that Jesus would die for the sins of the world?

    There are things we can theorize about, but in the end, we can't look into with absolute certainty that belong to the mystery of the Godhood?

    I happen to think that there are things that God knows based only within himself that leaves everyone without excuse, results in the elect being saved by grace through faith, and results in the rest being lost through their own stuborn refusal to repent.

    But Calvin said it so well. There are things that we can't look into too deeply because it amounts to mere speculation on our part. That being said, I don't agree with the supralapsarians. How do they know with certainty the order of God's decrees. They don't.
     
  14. Daniel David

    Daniel David
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Messages:
    5,316
    Likes Received:
    0
    Baptist pastor, I agree that the idea of limited atonement could limit alot of our preaching.

    For example, if limited atonement were true we could:

    1. Stop preaching the manipulative, arminian gospel
    2. Stop telling people that Jesus paid for their sins (because those in hell will pay for their own sins for all eternity)

    You know, we both "limit" the atonement. I limited who it is applied to (those who believe), and you limit its scope (actually for no one, just potentially for everyone).

    So, you believe in limited atonement as well.

    To me, Christ will not fail in bringing many sons to glory.
     
  15. Grasshopper

    Grasshopper
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2002
    Messages:
    3,348
    Likes Received:
    14
    Luke 2:1And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.

    I think you'll find when the term "whole world" or "all the earth" is used it rarely means entire planet.

    It is also hard to imagine that both Christ and the lost sinner pay the penalty for his sins. If Christ's atonement took care of all sin then what is left?
     
  16. Paul33

    Paul33
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2004
    Messages:
    2,434
    Likes Received:
    0
    No sinner can pay for his own sins and go to heaven.

    Only Jesus can pay the penalty for sin, which he did on the cross for every person. The offer of salvation is genuine because Christ did in fact die for the sins of the whole world.

    But the application of the atoning sacrifice comes when Christ intercedes. Unless Christ intercedes all of us are hopelessly lost. The blood must be applied and that happens at the Father's right hand.

    Calvin said that if a person rejects the atoning sacrifice of Christ he is doubly culpable. First for his own sins, and then again because he has rejected the payment for sins made by Christ.
     
  17. HankD

    HankD
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2001
    Messages:
    15,181
    Likes Received:
    326
    Grasshopper The problem with all the "what if" or "supposing" type questions which try to second guess God:

    Isaiah 55
    8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.
    9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

    While it is true we can have the mind of Christ, it is evident that few of us have a healthy measure since there seems to be so much disagreement among us.

    But then again that's part of our Baptist Baggage.

    The Book of Life, the Lake of Fire and the New Jerusalem.

    HankD
     
  18. Baptist_Pastor/Theologian

    Baptist_Pastor/Theologian
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2005
    Messages:
    437
    Likes Received:
    0
    I know the difference between eisegesis and exegesis!

    I didn't read anything into 1 Corinthians 1:18-31, simply quoted it and pointed out that the wisdom behind the human logic that developed the law of noncontradiction may well be foolishness in the sight of God. It is obvious that God will not be deterred in His Purpose to bring His Elect to Salvation given such Scripture as:

    John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

    John 6:37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.


    Romans 8:29, 30
    29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
    30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.


    Ephesians 1:3-6
    3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
    4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
    5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
    6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.
    </font>[/QUOTE]OldRegular,

    I did not know that anyone was questioning election here. Maybe you intended to post that reply on another thread. Because the nature of this discussion surrounds limited atonement. BTW, however you spell it you were indeed guilty of reading into that passage something that is not there, because no where does Paul dismiss the need to use sound reason. You act as if the Christian faith is not logical. We have a very reasonable faith. That is why Peter tells us to be prepared to give an account to anyone who asks. As far your using Paul to dismiss the validity of logic, I find that rather amusing, since it was Paul who reasoned with the philosophers of his day. Just read Acts 17...

    Shalom,

    Pastor Bill
     
  19. OldRegular

    OldRegular
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2004
    Messages:
    22,678
    Likes Received:
    53
    I know the difference between eisegesis and exegesis!

    I didn't read anything into 1 Corinthians 1:18-31, simply quoted it and pointed out that the wisdom behind the human logic that developed the law of noncontradiction may well be foolishness in the sight of God. It is obvious that God will not be deterred in His Purpose to bring His Elect to Salvation given such Scripture as:

    John 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

    John 6:37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.


    Romans 8:29, 30
    29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
    30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.


    Ephesians 1:3-6
    3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
    4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
    5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
    6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.
    </font>[/QUOTE]OldRegular,

    I did not know that anyone was questioning election here. Maybe you intended to post that reply on another thread. Because the nature of this discussion surrounds limited atonement. BTW, however you spell it you were indeed guilty of reading into that passage something that is not there, because no where does Paul dismiss the need to use sound reason. You act as if the Christian faith is not logical. We have a very reasonable faith. That is why Peter tells us to be prepared to give an account to anyone who asks. As far your using Paul to dismiss the validity of logic, I find that rather amusing, since it was Paul who reasoned with the philosophers of his day. Just read Acts 17...

    Shalom,

    Pastor Bill
    </font>[/QUOTE]You are free to read into my posts anything you wish and also free to misinterpret them in the process. I was simply making the point that taking Scripture out of context is a dangerous practice. There is nothing in my posts that indicate that I believe that the Christian faith is illogical. Also how did Paul reason with the philosopher? He preached the Gospel!
     
  20. Baptist_Pastor/Theologian

    Baptist_Pastor/Theologian
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2005
    Messages:
    437
    Likes Received:
    0
    OldRegular,

    It is hard to imagine that Paul just walked in to the most respected philosophical venue in the world unannounced and just preached the gospel. More than likely Paul as a tent maker was in dialog with these men and gained an audience through the process of exchanging ideas. If you read Acts 17 you can see in verses 22-34 this exchange reaching is fruition. By the fact that Paul referred to them as religious he is giving them credit for their effort to find truth. If truth is what they seek Paul basically informs them of the truth of the Gospel. He even goes as far as to quote one of their poets in verse 28. This is not an outright rejection of philosophy but a presentation of the truth. Keep in mind it was Paul who said I have been all things to all people that by he might reach some for Christ. Your overall attitude smacks of anti-intellectualism. It is not enough to just cut and paste Scripture. You must exchange ideas if you want to get your point across... something which by now is sorely lacking...

    Shalom,

    Pastor Bill
     

Share This Page

Loading...