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Atonement sparks discussion at NOBTS forum

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Revmitchell, Nov 21, 2017.

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  1. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    You do not see that the anger and wrath of God towards jesus as the sin bearer was NOT due to jesus being sinner, but that he agreed to die and take in our place our deserved wrath!
     
  2. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    I have never stated my position. I've argued against the idea God was wrathful towards Christ as He endured what would be God's wrath towards us. And I've argued against the idea that human sins placed upon God a need that demanded the want met.
     
  3. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    Excellent! the theology of Wright in regards to the Cross would have to be seen as denying the wrath of God as being biblical in regards to being expressed towards sins and sinners!
     
  4. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell Well-Known Member
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    The suffering He endured on the cross doesn't show Gods wrath to you? Really?

    I do not understand that last sentence
     
  5. Martin Marprelate

    Martin Marprelate Well-Known Member
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    I have given evidence several times on this board that Penal Substitution was well-known and accepted among the Early Church Fathers. But once again, someone has claimed that P.S. was unknown among the ECFs and someone else is claiming that Calvin invented it.

    Frankly, I have very little time for the Church Fathers, early or otherwise. The apostasy began right at the time of the Apostles (Acts 20:28-31). Either a doctrine is Biblical or it isn’t; and Penal Substitution is in the warp and weft of both old and new testaments. But because this utter falsehood is still being repeated, I will give one example of P.S. from an ECF, and try to expand it a little so as to give the context.

    It is a fact that there is not a vast amount of literature from the Fathers about the Atonement, one way or the other. I am not aware of a book specifically on the subject until Anselm’s Cur Deus Homo in the 11th Century. Most of the allusions concerning the doctrine are passing comments, but there are enough of these to prove that many/most of the ECFs believed in Penal Substitution.

    In the Dialogue with Tryphpo, a Jew, Justin Martyr (c. 100-165) is debating with this man Trypho and trying to convince him of Christianity. At one point, Trypho concedes that he is ‘inclined very strongly’ to think that Jesus is the Christ. He accepts that the O.T. teaches that the Messiah must suffer, but he cannot bring himself to believe (1 Corinthans 1:23) that He would be crucified, because the Law declares that anyone so executed is under a curse.

    ‘Then Trypho remarked, “Be assured that all our nation waits for Christ; and we admit that all the Scriptures which you have quoted refer to Him. Moreover, I do also admit that the name of Jesus, by with the son of Nave [ie. Nun] was called inclines me very strongly to adopt this view. But whether Christ should be so shamefully crucified, this we are in doubt about. For whomsoever is crucified is said in the law to be accursed [Deuteronomy 21:23]. So that I am exceedingly incredulous on this point. It is quite clear that Christ had to suffer; but we wish to learn if you can prove to us whether it was by the suffering cursed in the law.

    Justin responds by assuring Trypho that Christ was not cursed for His own sins. ‘Though a curse lies in the law against persons who are crucified, yet no curse lies on the Christ of God by whom all who have committed things worthy of a curse are saved.’ He continues:

    ‘For the whole human race will be found to be under a curse. For it is written in the law of Moses, “Cursed is every one that does not continue in all things that are written in the book of the law to do them.” And no one has accurately done all, nor will you venture to deny this; but some more and some less than others have observed the ordinances enjoined. But if those who are under the law appear to be under a curse for not having observed all the requirements, how much more shall the nations appear to be under a curse who practise idolatry, who seduce youths, and commit other crimes…….’

    Now we come to the crux of Justin’s argument: the reason why Christ was crucified is that the curse which rested on us for our sin was transferred to Him:

    ‘If then, the Father of all wished His Christ for the whole human family to take upon Him the curses of all, knowing that, after He had been crucified and was dead, He would raise Him up, why do you argue about Him, who submitted to suffer these things according to the Father’s will, as if He were accursed, and do not rather bewail yourselves?’


    So although Christ was innocent, He took upon Himself the curse due to sinful humanity, and bore it on the cross, enduring in His cruel and shameful death the punishment due to ‘the whole human family [whether one chooses that to mean all humans or all God’s children (Galatians 3:26; Hebrews 2:13b)]. Eusebius and Hilary of Poitiers are two other early writers who explain Penal Substitution on the basis of the ‘curse’ language of Deuteronomy 21:23 and Galatians 3:13.

    [Quotations taken from Ante-Nicene fathers, vol. 1(Eerdmans, Grand rapids), sections lxxxix, xciv, xcv. I have been helped in the above by reading Pierced for our Transgressions by Jeffrey, Ovey and Sach (IVP. ISBN: 978-1-84474-178-6). I strongly recommend this book]
     
  6. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    I think Jon C somehow views that if God was wrathful towards Jesus, jesus was being mistreated, byt Jesus was being treated just as lost sinners will be!
     
  7. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    By your reply, I see you didn't understand my post. Sorry for my lack of clarity.

    I said God was not being wrathful to Jesus when He laid upon Him all that would be wrath to us. How do you get "doesn't show God's wrath to you" from that statement????

    The part you didn't understand was simply that human sin does not put a demand upon God. We do not make God need to do anything. Divine Justice is not tgat God has to expend wrath against every sin (even if it hits an innocent target) so that He can forgive.
     
  8. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    YET, when we look at the fuller text from which those quotes were lifted we see a context that is not PSA. This is something you ignored on two previous threads hoping, I suppose, it would be forgotten.

    Martyr, for example, was a defence to the Jews and places Christ's suffering solely at their hands but by the will of God to liberate the human family from sin. Eusebius viewed this substitution as penal for the whole human family on the grounds of liberating mankind from the curse of sin and death. Luther viewed appeasement not as substitutionary punishment but substitutionary merit, Christ ontologically outweighing the sin and wrath against us.

    You are not being honest with those you quote. Like @Revmitchell said, antiquity does not make something correct. This is not worth the intellectual dishonesty.

    If you would like a discussion (an honest discussion) start a thread and let's look at them one by one, in full. But you won't like the results.
     
  9. Martin Marprelate

    Martin Marprelate Well-Known Member
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    I deliberately gave the larger context of Justin's argument and also something from Trypho, which I did not give before. Yes, of course it was a defence to the Jews (the clue is in the title!), but nonetheless, there is Penal Substitution, as large as life.
    I have no desire nor time to trawl through every ECF on this subject, but if you have something to say about this one in particular, let's hear it. Your post gives no detail, no quotes, but only your interpretation of it, which I question.
     
  10. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    Again (as I said before) if this is PSA then it is a PSA under which we all agree (You, me, Martyr, Luther, Wright, Anabaptist, Mennonites,Calvinists.....all of us). We all believe the same thing - PSA. So it's a meaningless term.
     
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  11. Martin Marprelate

    Martin Marprelate Well-Known Member
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    You do say the strangest things. So because we are all agreed on the doctrine of the Trinity, it has become a meaningless term? If you agree with my quote from Justin, why not bite the bullet and say so?

    Look, I have very little time for the ECFs. Justin Martyr is so weak on the Trinity that he's a poster boy for the JWs. He is also the father of baptismal regeneration. Other ECFs are shaky on all sorts of other doctrines. It is only because you and Rebel1 keep propagating this preposterous notion that Penal Substitution does not appear before the 16th Century that I bother with them at all.
     
  12. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    Not a meaningless term in itself but a meaningless term insofar as a distinction (between the theories of the Atonement).

    What you suppose is that PSA is an all encompassing doctrine that includes very opposing views. It includes the Christus Victor of Martyr and N.T. Wright, it includes the Ransom theory of Origen, it includes the Substitution Theory of Luther, the Satisfaction (honor) of Anselm, Aquinas' treasury of merit, the Moral Influence theory of Grotius ..... all of these fall within PSA because all of them believe Christ bore our sins and by his stripes we were heald; He took the blow we deserved; the Father wished Christ, for the whole human family, to take upon Him the curses of all, He died for our sins. All of those theories believe this, so by your definition they are ALL PSA.

    But what of that one theory that supposes that the Father wished His Christ, for the elect, to be punished for the sins of the elect by experiencing His anger in what the lost will experience at Judgment so that justice being satisfied through the punishment of sins He could forgive? This is what is new - NOT that Christ died for our sins. What do you call this theory of Calvin's, that divine justice demanded God punish sins, that there is a sin-debt God must collect so that He can forgive? What is that theory called? Heresy?

    What you are calling PSA here is simply Scripture, and yes, every Christian believed that throughout time. What I am referring to is that theory Calvin articulated - God punished Jesus in our place for our sins; Jesus experienced God's wrath; God was wrathful towards Jesus as He would be wrathful to the lost at Judgment. That's the PSA which has come lately, which did not exist until the 15th century. Until that time the closest you could get was Aquinas and he worded his theory in such a way as to avoid the heresy this version of PSA made.
     
  13. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell Well-Known Member
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    Sin does not put a demand on God but His own nature does.
     
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  14. Martin Marprelate

    Martin Marprelate Well-Known Member
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    None of these theories are wrong (apart from Aquinas); Christ did rise victorious, He did pay a ransom (though not to Satan!), He was our substitute etc. But they all fall short of the truth that is found in the Bible, that Christ on the cross was the 'propitiation' for our sins. That He was the sacrifice that turned away God's righteous judicial anger towards sin and those who commit sins (Psalm 7:11). 'That He might be just and the justifier of the one who believes in Jesus.' And this is what Justin was explaining to Trypho, not fully, but sufficiently if you had eyes to see it.

    It's bed-time in Britain and I'm away all day tomorrow, but I'll try to answer the second half of your post after that.
     
  15. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    Sounds good. Does not make sense but it sounds good.

    The problem is that you choose one interpretation that puts you at odds with other passages and yourself. With Scripture because it is an abomination to condemn the righteous, Jesus is God's beloved Son (the Object of divine love, not hate), and God gave His Son as a guilt offering.

    With yourself because your view was Calvinism until the 17th Century. What you reject of that theology is inconsistent with the remainder to which you cling. If you are correct then individual election was effected when God punished Jesus for their sins, effectively forgiving them. Christ atoned for the sins of the elect but not the non-elect otherwise God is collecting a debt unjustly.

    PSA that does not affirm the 5 points, and all 5 of the points, of Calvinism is inconsistent.
     
  16. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    All of those theories are partially correct (even Aquinas, which was the theory Calvin reformed). The only part of PSA that is wrong is its contextual framework, and the parts that depend on that framework. God simply was not bound to a 16th Century judicial system.
     
  17. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    The irony is no one thus far as been able to defend PSA via Scripture, except that they change PSA to mean simply that Christ bore our sins and by His stripes we were healed.

    You are right that nowhere in history does PSA crop up until the Reformation. Even Aquinas took pains to make sure his theory of Christ being punished did not become the heresy of God punishing His Son with the punishment for sin and out of anger. Unfortunately Calvin embraced it. And now, at least here, it is fairly widely accepted as tradition (it is assumed), although it remains a minority view world wide.

    I believe the reason we see so many theories and interest cropping up (a renewed interest in the Eastern Orthodox view, Christus Victor, and Mennonite theology) within evangelical circles is more and more are seeing the flaw of PSA and seeking a more biblical approach. On one hand it leads to the foolish attempt to find PSA in antiquity. But on another hand it leads to people grasping at unsupportable doctrines (the Mennonite theory of non-violent atonement, for example).

    I also believe the traditional approach the best. And, fortunately, it is not something that requires much reasoning out. All you have to do is read the Bible.
     
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  18. agedman

    agedman Well-Known Member
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    Prove that THE BLOOD is limited to the elect.

    The Scriptures state that the blood was shed for the forgiveness of sins.

    The Scriptures state that the blood shed (propitiation) was not only for believers but all the ungodly.

    So you must prove the blood is only for the elect.

    What limits salvation?

    God purpose in selecting only those He desires to believe.
     
  19. thatbrian

    thatbrian Well-Known Member
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    Are you a Universalist? If not, you too believe in limited atonement.

    Yes.

    Were you ungodly? All men were/are which is why Christ needed to die.

    Are you a Universalist?

    "Who" limits salvation is the question. The answer to that question is: God does.

    I assume you mean to ask why God saves some, but not others. If we begin with the idea that ALL men are guilty before God and deserving of damnation, then we see that God is under no obligation to save anyone. If He condemned all of mankind, He would be just. Likewise, if He saves one, if He chooses to show mercy to one, He is still just. It is His prerogative to show mercy if He so chooses.

    We don't know much biblically regarding God's reasons for choosing, but we do know this: It's according to His good pleasure.

    Ephesians 1:3–14

    Spiritual Blessings in Christ

    [3] Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, [4] even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love [5] he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, [6] to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. [7] In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, [8] which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight [9] making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ [10] as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.

    [11] In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, [12] so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. [13] In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, [14] who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory. (ESV)
     
  20. Rebel1

    Rebel1 Active Member

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    And I have given ample evidence that refutes the false assertion that any ECFs taught penal substitution. I have cited an entire paper that refuted the false claims of the book Pierced for Our Transgressions, but I'll list it again: http://therebelgod.com/AtonementFathersEQ.pdf

    The claim that PSA was taught in the early church is obviously false. Scholarship and history are not on the side of this claim. Nor is the New Testament. Since the early church did not hold PSA, it is thus undoubtedly not scriptural.

    Baptists would be much better off not following the Magisterial Reformers who in turn followed the RCC on this doctrine, expanding Satisfaction into PSA.
     
    #160 Rebel1, Nov 25, 2017
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2017
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