Another Sermon by Dr. David Allen

February 26, 2008

davidallen.jpgWe now present the second sermon delivered by Dr. David Allen, Dean of the School of Theology at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, to the Pastor’s Conference at the First Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida. Both sermons were from the book of Hebrews, which Dr. Allen has studied for many years.

In the first message, Dr. Allen argues for Lukan authorship of the book and makes a strong case against modern charismatic practice of sign gifts. In this second sermon, Dr. Allen further develops his case for Luke as the author of Hebrews, then makes an exegetical case against the central petal of the TULIP, limited atonement.

Enjoy!

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Adam

Let me first say that this is not a slam on Dr. Allen at all. If you look at my last post (his first sermon), I praise him for his work as a preacher and teacher. Let me also admit upfront that I am a 5 point Calvinist.

What does the text say? This is the foundational argument Dr. Allen proposes against Limited Atonement. Let’s look at the logical argument Dr. Allen presents.

Dr. Allen uses historical people of the faith to support his argument that the text does not teach Limited Atonement. In defending the biblical passages that include the words, “many, elect,” he also uses people of the faith to support his argument. It is interesting, however, that he is undermining his foundational argument…What does the text say? How does one explain away the words “many” or “elect” or “chosen ones” mentioned in other verses? I guess we use what other people have said rather than what the text says. (This is my argument. I know that Dr. Allen would not agree with this, yet it comes across this way in the sermon.)

He portrays that the text says what the text says. I could not agree more. He also makes the statement, “It is that simple. He tasted death for everyone.” This line of argument, however, could be detrimental. What do we do with the word “all” in some passages? If we interpret “all” to mean “ALL”, then we would have to conclude that ALL will be saved. However, scripture as a whole does not teach this. This is why we do not build doctrines on one passage. We look to the whole counsel of scripture.

I truly believe that good hearted Christians do not want to twist God’s word. The thought of twisting God’s word to say something it does not say is a frightening action. However, exegetical preaching does not always guarantee proper interpretation. We see this today. Why is it that Dr. Allen and others come up with this interpretation while Packer, MacArthur, Piper, and others arrive at a different interpretation? All use exegetical principles, yet arrived at differing interpretations. This goes to show how messy interpretation can be.

Debbie Kaufman

I would also ask to be shown anywhere in history that anyone who held to Reformed beliefs ever said “Do you follow the teachings of John Calvin” or “I follow the teachings of John Calvin.” Where in the history of the church anywhere ever said “I follow the teachings of the Dortian” or “Do you follow the teachings of the Dortian?” These arguments are so old. They just are not true. I do agree with what Adam above has said. Why not just preach the Bible with no topical preaching? The text says what it says. All of the Bible must be put into proper context. I heard little teaching from the actual text and more history teaching than Bible teaching. Teaching from scripture is beginning with verse 1 chapter 1 and going verse by verse through the whole book not a piece here and a piece there.

Debbie Kaufman

“We are often told that we limit the atonement of Christ, because we say that Christ has not made satisfaction for all men, or all men would be saved. Now, our reply to this is, that, on the other hand, our opponents limit it: we do not. The Arminians say, Christ died for all men. Ask them what they mean by it. Did Christ die so as to secure the salvation of all men. They say, “No, certainly not.” We ask them the next question–Did Christ die so as to secure the salvation of any man in particular? They answer, “No.” They are obliged to admit this, if they are consistent. They say, “No, Christ has died that any man may be saved if…” –and then follow certain conditions of salvation. Now, who is it that limits the death of Christ? Why, you. You say that Christ did not die so as to secure the salvation of anybody. We beg your pardon, when you say that we limits Christ’s death; we say, “no my dear sir, it is you that do it.” We say Christ so died that he infallibly secured the salvation of a multitude that no man can number, who through Christ’s death not only may be saved, but are saved, must be saved and cannot by any possibility run the hazard of being anything but saved. You are welcome to your atonement; you may keep it. We will never renounce ours for the sake of it.”
Charles Spurgeon

Scott Gordon

SO Debbie,

Do you follow the teachings of the Spurgeon?

Sola Gratia!

volfan007

this was another great sermon by dr. allen. this man sounds like a very good preacher…the kind of guy that we need preaching at the pastors conf. in indy, or at the sbc in indy. what a great line up we’d have if dr. david allen and dr. russell moore were two of the speakers at the pastors conf. it’d make me want to come to it more than i already do.

thanks sbctoday guys for putting these sermons out for us to hear and be blessed by.

the best line was…john calvin was at best a four point calvinist. wooooo hooooo. that was good.

david

Chris Johnson

Brother Wes,

Hats off (cowboy and all) to Dr. Allen. I believe he was absolutely fair in his assessment of Calvin. (He must be reading my articles,.. ha!)

Those that have not read the “Institutes” should, before they try and defend Calvin’s take on the term “Limited Atonement”. If he were with us today,…Calvin would probably agree…..that there are probably more accurate terms to reflect whom Christ has elected and saved, …and the end of Hebrews 2, especially verse 17 gives the best answer. The Hebrew writer quickly moves from “world” to those that Christ has elected and is saving “hilaskomai” (propitiation), all within a few sentences.

According to the author of Hebrews the extent of “death” (thanatos, Hebrews 2:9) is distinct and expressed as a dichotomy from the extent of the “freedom” (apallasso, Hebrews 2:15 ) wrought by the proptiatiory…. the root word for this usage of “free” is allasso, which means to exchange one thing for another….and Christ is seen as this exchange for the sins of His people.

So, without the death of Jesus Christ the “world” would not have redemption, and without the resurrection of Jesus Christ to life, the “elect” (those being saved) would not have righteousness.

Romans 6:4-7 “Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. (5) For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, (6) knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; (7) for he who has died is freed from sin.”

No water in that baptism……just freedom.

John 12:46-48 “I have come as Light into the world, so that everyone who believes in Me will not remain in darkness. (47) “If anyone hears My sayings and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. (48) “He who rejects Me and does not receive My sayings, has one who judges him; the word I spoke is what will judge him at the last day.”

Excellent message Brother Allen,
Blessings,
Chris

Debbie Kaufman

Scott: I agree with Spurgeon. Big difference. I agree with things that Luther wrote, Calvin etc. which are chalk full of scripture, but believe it or not I began to become reformed in my faith before I ever heard of any of these men.

Debbie Kaufman

Chris: I would say that I am one that believe Calvin believed in limited atonement, this after reading many of Calvin’s works. It wouldn’t matter one way or the other. I find it interesting that one would attempt to reinterpret a man’s writings who has been dead for many hundreds of years and yet we continue to try and speak for him. David Hunt attempted the same thing with Spurgeon and failed.

cb scott

I like the Cox ID; Biblicist. I also like the song.

B I B L I C I S T
That’s the one for me.

cb

Chris Johnson

Sister Debbie:

I agree it is very spurious to try and interpret the historic Calvin or any of the reformers for that matter. So I concede to your point about interpreting those guys.

One thing about his particular sermon, it appears that Dr. Allen does a very good job of defining the terms as they are in the context of the writing. He did spend a lot of time developing why we should look to the word “world” as the “world” and then basically reads through the rest of the chapter. But, one could spend 30 or 40 hours on the final verses.

I do not see any problem with “world” as the writer of Hebrews has stated it. It is what it is..”the world”. Although, the term “world” in the first section of the second chapter of Hebrews does not imply that the resurrected life / imputed righteousness that was secured by the death is in any way attributed to the world.

This is what the Hebrew writer clarifies for the listeners in the last part of chapter 2.

Blessings,
Chris

Debbie Kaufman

First I would like to reiterate that if one doesn’t agree with me, I have no problem with this, would never wish to exclude them, would not call them a heretic nor do I believe they are going against God or the Bible. I simply have a different interpretation. It is not fallible, I could be wrong, but I doubt it. Now my answer is shorter than my intro. :) I believe the world as used in Hebrews 2 is not referring to this present world, but the future world. How’s that for opening a can of worms? I derive this from the wording in 2:5.

Debbie Kaufman

In the passage that says Christ tasted death for everyone, I see this as referring to everyone that is in or will be in the Church. Not every single person in the world.

Chris Johnson

Sister Debbie,

The references I was making in my comments to the “world” were referencing only the “everyone” in 2:9. Everyone appears to be everyone in this context, which is extending from the “world” in vs.5.

I would have to say… the 2:5 seems to convey that “world”, or age, as placed under the jurisdiction of Christ, and not of the angels…which is the context of the section….. instead of Mosaic, it is now in Christ….same world though.

Blessings,
Chris

Debbie Kaufman

Say what you wrote ten times real fast. :) Couldn’t resist

I am not trying to change your mind or anyone’s mind, simply giving things from my binoculars. Now read those in the context of what I am saying Chris. If I say everyone come to my house for a bbq, is that everyone in the whole world, or just those who hear me or to whom I am speaking? I too believe scripture interprets scripture and the very verses that Dr. Allen says we give to prove limited atonement is Biblical are verses that I do believe prove it. We can’t gloss over them as I believe Dr. Allen did. He gave them, then acted as if they were not relevent or scripture. Yet I know he believes they are. He did not give a plausible reason not to include them. They are scripture.

John 10:14&15-Christ lays down his life for his sheep(us, born again Christians and those to be born again)

John 10:28- Jesus won’t lose his sheep(us)

Matthew 7:13&14-There are those who will never inherit eternal life

Ephesians 5:25- Christ laid down his life for his church

John 17:9- Christ specifically said he was not praying for the world but for those who God would give Christ.

John 10:1-5: My sheep hear my voice….

I could go on and on, nearly all of scripture has verses such as this. It can’t be denied in my opinion. Does this make me non-missional as continually charged? No. In fact it personally makes me more missional. I want the gospel spread, I think it’s known my support for missions. CP giving is another good example.

ABClay

I am going to have to listen to this sermon tomorrow on my ipod. With all the discussion, it has to be thought provoking and I am anxious to hear it.

I would like to comment on this discussion, however, without the benefit of having listened to the sermon. Much of this may be rather simplistic for I am just a lay person, so my apologies beforehand.

I grow weary of arguing with my non-reformed brothers about the nature of the atonement. I firmly believe that the atonement is limited in it’s application. The reason that I believe this is because God could not justly condemn people to hell (those who go to hell are often described by their sins) if Christ has paid their ransom and nailed their certificate of debt to the cross.

The non-reformed (I say non reformed because I don’t know any true Arminians) believe that the Calvinists have to twist scripture to make the L of TULIP stick, and I can understand to some extent how they can think this way; but just look at the verses that must be tormented if the atonement is limited in its extent rather than its application.

Does the entire world benefit from the cross? I believe that it does. All grace, (past, present, and future) whether it be common grace (sun, rain, etc.) or redemptive grace all flow from the cross; for the Father has no other means as revealed in His Word by which to show His love and mercy to a sinful, rebellious, evil, god-hating world than through the cross.

But the heart of this discussion cuts right to the redemptive nature of the cross. Was the sacrifice sufficient for all? I believe it was but it was not intended for all because all did not have their names in the book of life before the foundation of the world and not all will be spared from the eternal fires of hell because they did not believe and continued in their rebellion.

Of all the points, this is the one that I find the most difficult to argue against, yet it is the one that is most offensive to those who don’t hold to the doctrines of grace.

Perhaps my thoughts will change after listening to the sermon by Dr. Allen.

With all the love that a rebellious, hell deserving sinner who has been bought by the blood of Christ can muster, I am…

ABClay

Chris Johnson

Sister Debbie,

It was a tongue twister (ha)

All I am trying to say about Dr. Allen’s sermon is that I believe he has been true to scriptural exegesis. The order of the words in the Hebrew text and their usage points to “everyone” consisting of all human creation and that Christ suffered “death”. Again, this discourse by the Hebrew writer does not impinge upon “Limited Atonement” as such IMHO. Although I believe there is a better term to use than “limited” when teaching. And, I would agree that Calvin would most likely not use the “limited” term in the manner used by those using “limited” in the TULIP design. It is clear that Calvin did not invent the TULIP, because he was already dead when it came about. The letter I use no longer makes a nice flower. This section simply states that Christ came to suffer death.

Hebrews 2:5-9 For He did not subject to angels the coming inhabited earth, concerning which we are speaking. (6) But someone somewhere solemnly testified, saying, “What is humanity [or, man], that You remember him, or [the] son of humanity, that You look after him? (7) “You made him only a little lower [or, only for a short while lower] than [the] angels; You awarded him the victor’s wreath [of] [or, crowned him with] glory and honor, (8) “You put all [things] in subjection under his feet.” For in the subjecting to him all [things], He left nothing unsubjected to him. But now we do not yet see all [things] having been subjected to him. [Psalm 8:4-6] (9) But we see Jesus, the One having been made only a little lower [or, only for a short while lower] than [the] angels because of the suffering of death, having been awarded the victor’s wreath [of] [or, having been crowned with] glory and honor, in order that by [the] grace of God He should taste [fig., experience] death on behalf of all.

It seems to be fairly obvious that Christ’s righteousness is only imputed to those that He is seeking and saving, ….those that were found in Him before the foundation of the world. That kind of throws cold water all over the “seeker sensitive” guy, but nevertheless, God saves, we don’t seek.

Blessings,
Chris

Chris Johnson

Sister Debbie:

One other scripture came to mind over lunch….when we talk about “all” and make the distinction concerning “the redeemed”. Its clear that Paul corroborates the truth of the Hebrew writer.

Romans 5:17-19 For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ. (18) So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men. (19) For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.

God makes it clear…. that because of Christ’s “act” and “obedience” unto death,….there resulted justification of life to all men. The Hebrew writer, much like Paul, is consistent to have us understand the federal nature of sin in Adam and the result of the “power” of that propitiatory in Christ (second Adam). Paul’s teaching here, much like the writer of Hebrews teaching in chapter 2, does not convey that the “power” (i.e. imputed righteousness borne out of the resurrection) has been made to the elect in the phrase “justification of life to all men”. Scripture is clear in every instance to make clear that the distinct moment of imputation occurs as God regenerates His children unto life..(they believe).. “even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.”

Both the Roman and Hebrew letter make this important distinction. Christ’s death swallowed death and sin of the whole world, all sin, the power of death and hell was rendered powerless, ….but that death being alone is meaningless………it is the “resurrection” that brings power to those being saved (the many), who obtain the righteousness of Christ by imputation.

Blessings,
Chris

chadwick

John 6:37

selah,
chadwick

chadwick

I agree with Debbie for a change! :D

chadwick

Morris Brooks

The atonement is available to all, but because of the total inability of man none will or can receive it, therefore it is applied to the elect only.

Debbie Kaufman

Hey Chadwick, yes we do agree. :)

Chris: Another can of worms I’m about to open. I do see everything subject to Christ. This began with Christ’s death and resurrection, when he defeated Satan.

Debbie Kaufman

Morris: We must have been posting at the same time. That is an excellent way to word it.

Chris Johnson

Brother Chadwick,

Does that mean that you are saying that the “everyone” at the end of Hebrews 2:9 means only those that Christ has elected and is saving?

Blessings,
Chris

Chris Johnson

Debbie:

It appears we are understanding what Christ has done in the same way…. i.e. Christ applies his atoning work (righteousness) to the elect only, but translating the meaning of the term of “everyone” differently at Hebrews 2:9.

-Chris

chadwick

Chris,

FOR WHO DID CHRIST DIE?
(John Owen)

The Father imposed His wrath due unto, and the Son underwent punishment for, either:
1. All the sins of all men.
2. All the sins of some men, or
3. Some of the sins of all men.

In which case it may be said:
That if the last be true, all men have some sins to answer for, and so, none are saved.
That if the second be true, then Christ, in their stead suffered for all the sins of all the elect in the whole world, and this is the truth.
But if the first be the case, why are not all men free from the punishment due unto their sins?

You answer, “Because of unbelief.”

I ask, Is this unbelief a sin, or is it not? If it be, then Christ suffered the punishment due unto it, or He did not. If He did, why must that hinder them more than their other sins for which He died? If He did not, He did not die for all their sins!”

(Quote taken from John Owen)

chadwick

chadwick

Opps . . . I forgot that Dr. Allen dismisses all views after Calvin. ;)

Oh well . . . I guess I’ll quote One before Calvin:

As Thou hast given Him power over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as Thou hast given Him. (John 17:2)

chadwick

Chris Johnson

OK Brother Chadwick,

The John Owen stuff always reminds me of the “Princess Bride” movie where the Sicilian criminal genius Vizzini is having wine with Westley.

:)

Again, I think that we are saying the same thing. The issue about “limited atonement” is more about the definition and of the terms and what they mean to the eye of the beholder.

I believe the atonement was sufficient and perfect. It achieved what it was designed to achieve. The atonement was not limited in any respect. It was and is being applied to all those that the Father has given Christ in the world.

“As Thou hast given Him power over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as Thou hast given Him.” (John 17:2)

How would the meaning of the passage change with the Hebrews 2:9 passage ending with everyone, and meaning everyone; not elect only?

How does translating the words in Hebrews as everyone meaning everyone, change the application of righteousness? I don’t think it does or can.

Blessings,
Chris

ABClay

Debbie,

This subjection… would include those who are not “elect” who will also be subject to Christ in the Isaiah 45:22-23 and Philippians 2:9-11 sense?

Also, Christ not only redeemed all who will believe from the fall but also reconciled the “earth” from its fallen state which would by proxy make it subject too? (Eph 1:10; Col 1:20; etc.)

I cannot disagree with you.

Oh what a Savior!

Chris Johnson

Debbie and Chadwick (team for now),

The application of righteousness is a no-brainer…. Only the elect gains the righteousness that Christ alone provides to His elect children.

I think what Hebrews and other NT letters bring into view the question….Was the death of Christ sufficient to take away the sins of the world? The scriptures show that Christ drank sins bitter cup to the bottom. The death He tasted was the curse of sin. Jesus suffered the total agony of every soul in hell for all eternity while on the cross. That was the depth of His suffering. He conquered death and hell, the power of sin. Christ “suffering for all” in no way diminishes the distinction of the Holy Spirit applying Christ’s righteousness to the elect.

Some would say that he only suffered for the sins of the elect, not the sins of the whole world. Is there such a thing as limited suffering? I don’t think the bible reveals it to us as limited suffering (i.e. only suffering for the sins of the elect only).

1John 2:1-2 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; (2) and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world. NASB

A bit more literal view…

1John 2:1-2 My little children [or, My dear children], I am writing these things to you* so that you* do not sin. And if anyone does sin, we have a Counselor [or, an Advocate] with the Father, Jesus Christ, [the] righteous. (2) And _He_ is [the] propitiation [or, appeasing sacrifice] concerning our sins, but not concerning ours only, _but_ also concerning the whole world’s! ALT

I know,…this discussion has gone on since the first century and will never stop. But, it can be very instructive.

Blessings,
Chris

chadwick

Chris,

Who would have ever thougth that Bat Man & Cat Woman would ever join forces? :D

Debbie & I are the Dynamic Duo!

Check out Piper’s thoughts . . . they articulate my view on Hebrews 2:9 -http://www.desiringgod.org/ResourceLibrary/Sermons/ByScripture/26/958_For_Whom_Did_Jesus_Taste_Death/

chadwick

Chris Johnson

Thanks Chadwick, will do…

Chris Johnson

Chadwick,

First of all….I love John Piper, and had the opportunity to sit with his family at the last ETS conference in San Diego….so, much, much respect!….On this subject he seems to temper his answer “somewhat” as he tries to explain the distinction….when he says.

“For whom did Jesus taste death?” by simply saying “everybody.” What’s unhealthy about it is not, first, that it’s wrong. It might not be wrong. It depends on what you mean by saying that. What’s unhealthy is that it stops short of asking what Jesus really accomplished when he died. It assumes that we all know what he accomplished and that this he accomplished for everybody in the same way. That is not healthy, because it is not true. My guess is that most of those 95% who say Jesus died for everybody would have a hard time explaining just what it is that the death of Jesus really, actually accomplished for everybody—especially what it accomplished for those who refuse to believe and go to hell. ”

I think he makes a good argument…..but, I am not yet convinced that Christ’s suffering for the sins of the entire world would diminish His atoning work on behalf of the elect. John seems to think it might….

Blessings,
Chris

ABClay

I often fall into the habit of speaking as if the death of Christ had only one benefit, justification of the elect. I think that this is a little short sighted on my part.

There is one thing that I think that we can say though, Christ did not make a “sin offering” to God on the behalf the non elect.

Debbie Kaufman

Chris: I believe Revelation 5:9-10 explains the verses you have quoted. Christ’s death accomplished the fact that those from “every tribe, language and people” aka world will be saved.

And they sang a new song: “You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.
Revelation 5:9-10

Chris Johnson

Debbie,

There really is not a lot of difference in how we each know the results. There are a few differences in how we see what scripture has revealed and how we understand those results came to be.

The Greek “pas” and “kosmos” have varying meanings depending upon context, and that is where these variations crop up with different teachers. This is why Calvin gets accused for being both universalistic and particularistic in many of these sections we have described. All of these passages are great to study!

Getting back to the original theme of Dr. Allen….. I believe he was trying to make the case that Calvin was has unfairly been seen as the chief architect of “Limited Atonement”. History has shown that Calvin was not the architect, some of his followers were. I think his writings show many perspectives dealing with the atonement. Calvin comes across as Limited, Definite, and Universal depending upon the passage….thus why he gets the rap he gets.

Thank you for the posts,

Blessings,
Chris

ABClay

Therefore be it known to all non reformed brothers… You have won. Calvin wasn’t a “Card Carrying” Calvinist in the modern sense of the word. I concede. Thank you for your work Dr. Allen and the vast army of others who strive to this end.

These reformed brothers and sisters should renounce the name that has been thrust upon them by others.

Perhaps we could have a thread as to what we should be called now. The late, great Falwell had a name for us. Are there any other suggestions? Perhaps “Reformed”? Maybe “Dortians”? “Charlestonians”? I personally like “Sandy Creekers”; Calvinists with evangelistic fervor. (Now that’s gonna get “Butch” hot under the collar)

Now that this matter is resolved and if the atonement is to be debated (which I believe is a non issue) in light of Scripture, it would probably be more beneficial to discuss the issues of the actual atonement in regards to the purpose of the redemptive work of Christ instead of attempting to prove that Calvin wasn’t a “Calvinist”. Calvin wasn’t a Baptist either, yet this issue is seldom addressed. It is the “L” that always seems to get under the skin.

Soli Deo Gloria!

ABClay

Sean

This was the second sermon I have listened to by Dr. Allen and find him to be a great orator and a good expositor. His beliefs about expository preaching and the priority of the text are very commendable and what we need from preachers. Yet, I found this weakness in his argument. He spent a great deal of time showing what John Calvin historically believed about the nature of the atonement and also argued from examples in church history, but failed to look at the overall context of the entire text in Hebrews. I respect him greatly for his many years of exegetical work in Hebrews and look forward to his upcoming commentary, but let me defend the view of particular redemption (limited atonement) from the that text in Hebrews. In Hebrews 2:10, we see that “many” sons are brought to glory. Not all. This does not relate necessarily to the nature of the atonement, but clearly teaches the doctrine of election. Verse 17 is the exegetical key to understanding the nature of the atonement. Jesus is a merciful and high priest to make propitiation for the sins of the people. As the high priest, He is the Mediator or Intecessor in securing the salvation of the people of God. Does Jesus mediate or intercede for those who suffer in hell? He made propitiation for the sins of the people. This verse does not say “elect” but the people. This really doesn’t matter, because the concept of a propitiatory sacrifice is the real issue. Did Jesus make true propitiation (ie: Did He actually absorb, exhaust, and bear the full measure of God’s wrath and thereby deflect it from us) or was it a hypothetical propitiation that made forgiveness and salvation a possibility. If Jesus actually propitiated God’s wrath on the cross for every single person who ever lived, then why are there those who are suffering the wrath of God in hell. If their sins were propitiated, then they shouldn’t have to suffer wrath in hell. Hebrews 9:12 said that Jesus secured or obtained our eternal redemption. It was not a theoretical or hypothetical atonement, but a real transaction on the cross where He bore the sins of His people. If all men’s sins are paid for, then why are there some in hell. THey are suffering “double-jeopardy” in that their sins have been propitiated by Jesus, but yet they still have to suffer God’s wrath. Many will argue that what sends the sinner to hell is unbelief in Jesus. He paid for their sins, but they refused to accept HIm and thereby suffer God’s wrath for their unbelief. Is unbelief a sin? Most definitely. Then you have Jesus dying for all the sins of every single person who ever lived except for one sin–unbelief. Christ died for ALL the sins of the “many”–the elect, His people. He is the High Priest who is the Mediator in heaven right now for those for whom He died. If Christ died for every single person who ever lived, then He is surely failing as a Mediator because those for whom He died are suffering God’s wrath in hell because they didn’t believe. And if they are being punished for unbelief, then they are being punished for a sin that Christ supposedly didn’t die for. This shows an almost cruel portrait of Christ who would offer Himself as a potential Savior for all, but not actually be able to be a High Priest and would cause those for whom He died to suffer God’s wrath in hell. The totality of the book of Hebrews shows the mediatorial role of Christ as High Priest for His people and the writer teaches particular redemption. Just because the word “Tasted death for all men” is in there does not give an argument for unlimited atonement. Exegetically, one must also look at the High Priestly role of Christ and also the nature of propitiation.

Chris Johnson

Sean,

Good word, and I would not disagree with much of what you have said.

Several other thoughts on this subject,

Hebrews is a wonderful letter as everyone here well knows. The tenth chapter speaks of how distinctive the blood of Christ is eternally in comparison to the blood of bulls and goats.

Hebrews 10:8-10 After saying above, “SACRIFICES AND OFFERINGS AND WHOLE BURNT OFFERINGS AND sacrifices FOR SIN YOU HAVE NOT DESIRED, NOR HAVE YOU TAKEN PLEASURE in them” (which are offered according to the Law), (9) then He said, “BEHOLD, I HAVE COME TO DO YOUR WILL.” He takes away the first in order to establish the second. (10) By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

The writer says “we will” (I take that to mean those that are being saved) Then from another perspective,… further on in this passage there is also a look at those who reject and trample on this truth.

Hebrews 10:28-31 Anyone who has set aside the Law of Moses dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. (29) How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace? (30) For we know Him who said, “VENGEANCE IS MINE, I WILL REPAY.” And again, “THE LORD WILL JUDGE HIS PEOPLE.” (31) It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

The writer says “anyone” (I take that to mean the one who rejects Christ). I believe this passage does show that the blood of Christ does have an effect on the lost. It is not a positive one by any means. In fact, it brings about a much severer punishment in the mind of the Hebrew writer.

I think it is important to remember that the entire world is resurrected; some to life, the other to death.

Revelation 20:12-15 And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds. (13) And the sea gave up the dead which were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead which were in them; and they were judged, every one of them according to their deeds. (14) Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. (15) And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

I believe that the power of sin was broken by the death of Christ to those that God calls to Himself (who are the elect). There is a severer aspect of this death for those that trample underfoot the Son of God.

Blessings,
Chris

ABClay

Sean,
Brother, the way you put that sounds a lot like what Paul was railing against in Galatians.

“You can’t be saved unless you “choose” to become circumcised first.” (Jesus makes salvation possible if you only become circumcised)

Or what the Romans say “You can’t be saved unless you are baptized into the “church” and “choose” to continue to receive absolution for your transgressions” (Salvation is possible only if you are able to be forgiven for your sins)

Many today confess that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone, but at the same time say that “You can’t be saved unless God sees that you have saving faith within yourself and “choose” to believe of your “free will”. (Jesus made salvation available to you only if you have the good sense, apart from the regenerating work of God, to believe on Jesus by saying a prayer)

I must be careful lest I tread on “sacred” ground, and ce labeled an “aggressive Calvinist” and am scorched for my reformed beliefs.

In the love of Christ who raised me from death, I proclaim Soli Deo Gloria!

ABClay

volfan007

the tulip theory…..

total depravity= man is sinful to the core of his being and cant save himself. he is dead to the things of God, and would never truly seek after God. i agree with that. but, the extreme of this part of the tulip is that man is so dead that he cant even respond to the convicting and calling of God.

unconditional election=there is nothing in man that would make God choose to save him. amen to that. God chooses, by grace, to save people. amen. God chose to save people before the world began…not based on anything that man has done, or could do. amen again. but, the extreme of this part of the tulip is that dortians believe that God just arbritarily picks this one to be saved, and that one to be lost. they turn this into a doctrine of fatalism.

limited atonement=the atoning death of Jesus paid the price for the believer’s sin so that the believer can go to heaven. amen. and, the atonement is limited in it’s effectiveness. iow,only those who respond to the call of God and repent of their sins and put thier faith in Jesus will be saved due to the atoning work of Jesus. just like only those who looked in faith at the bronze serpent in the wilderness were healed of the deadly snake bite that hit the hebrew people. but, of course, as what’s being discussed here, the dortians believe that Jesus died only for the elect. that everyone else is doomed to hell with no real chance of heaven because Jesus didnt die for them.
(i personally believe that the atoning death of Jesus is sufficient to save all people, everywhere, anytime. i believe that all men can be saved from the death of Jesus. i believe that, of course, it’s limited in it’s effectiveness…only those who repent and believe will be saved due to the cross).

irresistible grace=if you’re one of the elect, you’re gonna get saved. you have no choice in the matter. you’re gonna get saved no matter what.
i cannot accept this as true. the bible is full of people making choices, and of the Lord trying to get people to repent…who do not.

perseverance of the saints=those who are saved will be kept til the end. amen.

david

ABClay

My apologies if that came across as prideful or arrogant. Just being earnest.

Adam

Volfan007,

Are you a Tennessee fan? I am. I live in Murfreesboro. Let me respond to your posting. Please note that I do this out of love and with no ill-feeling. I was once a non-Calvinist. I know how I used to think. I also know how long it took me to
change my beliefs. Therefore, I am not the arrogant Calvinist, but a loving believer truly seeking God’s truth as I know you are as well. May we all pursue God’s truth.

Total Depravity=You are correct to say that man is so dead that he can’t even respond to the convicting and calling of God. That is why regeneration precedes faith. Without regeneration, then one could not CHOOSE to place their faith in Christ. Yes, you heard me. The elect must still choose Christ. Despite the false statements made about Calvinism making us robots, freedom of the will is part of Calvinism.

Unconditional Election=Most Baptists, in my opinion, would agree with your assessment. Your comment about God arbitrarily picking one to be saved is where I would disagree with you. This was the biggest struggle I had against Calvinism. I rejected it FULLY and ARGUED against it, as well as Calvinism as a whole, until I came to understand this point. When I understood this point, GRACE exploded in my life. Grace became true GRACE. I don’t know where I learned it or picked it up, but I once believed that God owed man salvation. I knew we weren’t worthy of it, but if God offered it to one person, then he would have to offer it to all. To not do so would make God a non-loving God. When I realized that man was not owed salvation, then it hit me like a load of bricks. If he doesn’t owe us salvation, then is He unjust if he doesn’t give it to all people? NO. If he doesn’t give it to all people, then why did he give it to me (Not based on anything I had done)? It was at this point that grace meant something truly meaningful to me. God chose me before the foundation of the world! What did I do to deserve this? My salvation is secure! No one can snatch me out of his hand! All these things flooded my mind. Grace became/becomes the fuel to passionately seek God and be fully obedient to him. It becomes the catalyst for evangelism. Evangelism is seen as a privilege rather than a duty to be done out of guilt.

Limited Atonement=This doctrine was the last doctrine for me to embrace. I embraced it about 1 year ago. Embracing Calvinism as a whole was about a 5-7 year process. (This is why I am not pushy on people. If it took me this long to understand these doctrines, then I will extend the same courtesy to those “on the other side.”) Both sides limit the atonement. Even you agree with this in your statement. To say that God died for the sins of the whole world is to say that Jesus’ blood was not effective. If it is not effective for some, why should it be effective for you or me? Are we to say that Jesus’ blood was wasted? The image you convey is Christ going to the cross not knowing those that he had chosen before the foundation of the world. If one believes that man is totally depraved and God has unconditionally chosen those that he would save, then it would make logical sense that he would die for those people. I can see your logic (man has a choice to choose God apart from God’s election. Therefore, God must die for all people to make that choice available to them.) The doctrine of limited atonement is a difficult one. That is why this doctrine was the last one for me to fully embrace.

Irresistible Grace=Once again, many make the mistake that Calvinism does not include choice. It absolutely does. This is why regeneration must precede faith. As God regenerates our life, then one becomes aware of the beauty and majesty of Christ. It may not be instant, but they will see him for who he is. God continually chases after us until we choose to accept him. It can be said that those whom God regenerates will choose Christ, thus irresistible grace. The choice may be limited, but choice is still part of the process.

Perseverance of the Saints=We should all agree with this.

Debbie Kaufman

Chris: I realize that Calvin did not invent TULIP, that was done after his death in response to the Arminian acrostic which was trying to refute the Reformed faith.

I do believe that Calvin taught and believed limited atonement.

Volf: I believe on has to understand total depravity before the rest makes sense. I have heard some actually disagree with the phrase”you have no choice.” but I would agree with that piece you have written. Thank God I had no choice because I would and did not choose Him. I would be on my way to hell. He rescued me from that. I am still praising God after 9 years. He even accomplished it on Valentines Day, that is a story I will tell someday. I still cry when I think of it. I won’t deal with the rest of what you have written but ask you to read some reformed writers both past and present who articulate very well the full story.

ABClay

Adam,

Well said brother.

For me, however, I had a little bit of a different experience with the Irristible Grace as I am sure that all experiences are not the same.

One morning I believed that the bible was a good story, full of myths and legends and before I went to bed that night I was more convinced that the Bible was truth and the Word of God than I was of what my name is. I had no choice but to believe.

I didn’t understand the doctrines of grace then, for I was as inconsistent in my Soteriology as anyone could have ever been (Didn’t even know what soteriology was), but the doctrines of Grace gave me some understanding of how God works in our salvation.

I would lend this analysis of the “P”. It is often misconstrued today as the “once saved, always saved”, but it is so much more.

If you believe that free will is sovereign, and God will not “choose” you unless you choose Him, then at what point does your free will become unsovereign? I mean, If you can “choose” to believe from your own “free will”, then why can’t you use that same “free will” to un-choose God? Doesn’t this God become a monster who will hold you in the kingdom of God regardless of whether you want to be there or not?

Perserverence in it’s historical sense I believe dispells this recent notion of “Carnal Christianity” or “Chronic Backsliders”. Perhaps someone more versed than I am can address this better.

I am a firm advocate of free-will, but not in the sense that most SBCr’s believe. Forgive me for bringing up Augustine, but he put it well. He believed that Adam was “not able to sin” and that Adam actually had to overcome a natural inclination to please God in order to do evil. Now, man is in a state where we are “not able not to sin” as a result of the fall. All that we do is bad. Our will does just as our nature dictates that it do and that is hostility to God, unability to submit itself to God’s law (Romans 8:6-8 and others). But when God regenerates us, He changes our nature so that we are no longer inclined to evil, but to good and the only ones that He regenerates are those who were in the kingdom of God prior to the foundation of the world or before time began.

Thank you volfan for putting it out there. I don’t mean by no stretch to sound presumptuous but I encourage you to explore Romans 9 and note the context: There are those who hear what Paul spoke about in Romans 8 (those he foreknew, he predestined and called and sanctified) and then they look at all the Jews around who are not believing in this “Gospel”. They ask Paul, “Hey Paul, God elected Israel, and you are saying now that all those He elected, He is supposed to sanctify?” That’s where Paul starts in Romans 9, “But it is not as if the word of God has failed”. And ask yourself as you read Paul in Chapter 9, “Am I asking the same questions that Paul is answering?”

God Bless

ABClay

Debbie hits the nail squarely when she says that none of this “tulip” business makes sense if you don’t understand what we believe about the depravity of man. It is the hingepin upon what all else turns.

Chris Johnson

Adam,

The effects of the atonement are never in question. The terms to describe them are….. The logic you use in the response to David is no different than what David has said.

When you said, “Are we to say that Jesus’ blood was wasted? The image you convey is Christ going to the cross not knowing those that he had chosen before the foundation of the world. If one believes that man is totally depraved and God has unconditionally chosen those that he would save, then it would make logical sense that he would die for those people.

When emotion is introduced into the discussion it tends to cloud the issue. God is able and has brought a people to Himself. Christ can break the power of sin, without saving anyone. He did not need us…..we must keep in view that all things are for His Glory. Its not about us, although he chooses to included us….it is about Him.

Blessings,
Chris

volfan007

adam,

i live in tn, yes. i was chosen before the world begun to be a tn vol fan. for that i’m very thankful. :) i live in west tn at the moment, but i have many ties to middle tn. my brother in law lives in fairview. my wife’s cousin lives in murfreesboro. my dad was born in wayne county, and of course, i have many, many relatives in wayne county. i’m distantly related to darryl worley…the country singer, and to all his kin over in hardin county. so, i have many ties to middle tn.

but, let me just share with you, brother, that i too have studied calvinism extensively. i was saved at the age of 19, back in 1980. now, you know my age! and, i surrendered to the call to preach shortly thereafter. i went to seminary in 1984 where i was “approached” by a bunch of very zealous calvinists. i also sat under the teaching of dr. tom nettles and dr. jimmy millikin. i thought on this system of doctrine. i seriously considered this form of doctrine. i agonized over whether i should beleive this system, or not. i prayed over it. but, in the end, i saw where it fell short of what the bible really teaches in several areas. and, i determined in my heart to just be a biblicist…instead of trying to make the bible fit a system. no offense to the five pointers out there. i believe that yall are bible believers as well, but i think that yall have to try real hard to make the bible fit into your system…. instead of just letting say what it says.

so, i guess what i’m saying to adam and all in here, i’ve been saved for nearly 27 years, and i’ve been in the ministry for nearly 27 years. believe me when i say that i’ve studied this issue. it’s not from lack of considering it, nor from lack of trying to accept it. i just dont see all the fine points of tulip in the bible. it looks more like a philosophical, theological system to me….just as arminianism does as well.

i love you five pointers.

david

volfan007

i just saw a typo….in case anyone’s doing the math. i was saved in 1981….not 1980. in 1980 i was a rebellious hellion who was partying and heading for hell.

david

Chris Johnson

David,

I thought you had missed that by about “one” year!

Chris

:)

Scott Gordon

DavidVol,

Thanks for the love, my brother! :-)

You were in classes with DRs. Nettles & Millikin and you still didn’t get it right? :-D

Sorry, bro, couldn’t resist raggin’ a fellow MABTS alumnus!

BY GRACE ALONE!

volfan007

scott,

that’s the devil coming out of you! :)

david

Debbie Kaufman

Chris: I always enjoy hammering things out with you, give me time to downsize and chew on your question. I say this not because I don’t have an answer, but it would be as big as two volumes to answer fully.

BTW I think abc asks a good question that I would like to hear the answer to. I know you don’t mean to be dismissive, but dismissive it is. :) I don’t believe it emotionalism at all, but isn’t the Cross emotional? It should be. Scripture for me is often times emotional. It’s truths full of beauty in every jot and tittle. Just wanted to throw that in. Without the total concept of Total Depravity as I believe is in scripture, limited atonement talk is a waste of time, yet those opposed to Calvinism either go straight to Predestination or Limited Atonement as Dr. Allen has done. It’s all one full solid package. One cannot be stood alone.

Debbie Kaufman

david: The important thing is you are now born again. For that I rejoice. I don’t agree with you on anything, but I can’t wait to meet you in heaven where we will agree on everything. :)

Chris Johnson

Debbie:

I was not trying to be dismissive of the emotions comment. That would be another great post in the future. The emotive references of scripture have been popular in theology of late as theologians consider the doctrine of divine impassibility. This is not talked about so much anymore….but it may be worth the time. “For who hath known the mind of the Lord?” Romans 11:34.

Maybe I can pull some thoughts together and email them to you as to how this subject weaves it way into open theistic thought, the doctrine of immutability and impassibility and the use of anthropopathic expressions.

It should be fun!

Blessings,
Chris

ABClay

Chris/Debbie,

Sounds like a good subject to address on SBCToday.

Phil Johnson has a good lesson on the immutability and impassibility of God at swordandtrowel.org entitled “does God have mood swings”.

Is it okay to plug that “fundamentalist” here at the SBC?

ABClay

Chris Johnson

AB,

Phil’s a cool guy….and yes his article is worth the read. I’m not sure if he fits the “fundamentalist” suit very well though…

:)

Blessings,
Chris

ABClay

Chris,

That was a joke. It’s sad though that it carries such a negative connotation today.

Phil is a self admitted “Fundamentalist” in its original context and definition. He taught about the “Failure of Fundamentalism” a couple of years back.

He has been a blessing to me by answering stupid questions that I send him and I hope to see him next week.

ABClay

Debbie Kaufman

Chris: I’m probably going to end up answering your question concerning Christ’s death on the cross that yu referenced on my own blog. I can’t seem to be able to give a short answer and don'[t want to write a book on this blog out of respect for the collaborators here. I would of course welcome any email response you care to give. I will hopefully have the answer to your questions up this weekend. Thanks, you did give me a good idea for a post. It was a very good question.

Chris Johnson

AB,

I agree….it is always good to know the fundamentals, and Phil has a good hold on those.

Say hi to Clayton for me, …. unfortunately I have to miss the trip this year to the land of fruits and nuts. (That is to be taken in the most fundamental of senses)

Debbie, I’ll be listening,… digitally.

Blessings,
Chris

ABClay

Just a little something to rinse off with after you listen to Dr. Allen.

http://www.desiringgod.org/ResourceLibrary/Sermons/ByScripture/26/958_For_Whom_Did_Jesus_Taste_Death/

In Love,

ABClay

ABClay

LOL,

I had forgotten that Chadwick had already posted this. Just goes to show you guys how God works. Not only is it really important to listen to Piper, it’s really, really important.

Sorry for the repost.

Chris Johnson

Debbie, AB, and Chadwick (Tres Amigos)

You are surely my brothers and sister in Christ and I really do appreciate the information you have supplied on this subject of the atonement. Fortunately, most of the people on this post have poured over most of the information you have suggested already, but it is always good to go back and try to understand these various points of view throughout history.

I have not seen anyone so far that will disagree with the fact that God is the mover in salvation, really all things for that matter. In the case of salvation, ..being that mankind is not capable of coming to Christ without God first moving on the heart and salvation is all of God from beginning through eternity. There is no doubt of this doctrine in scripture. It could not be any other way, for it is impossible for God to lie. In other words, any sound bible teacher understands that we don’t find God and then decide to accept him on our own. That way of salvation is simply not biblical, even though some preachers find it exciting for selfish reasons.

The root of the atonement however, is not as simplistic or isolated as those that defend and claim concerning their system of “Limited Atonement”. And there are many variations of the system. (I too have my own variation) Again, there is no debate that God makes a definite application of the atonement to those He is saving,….and He certainly does not apply His atonement to those He is not saving. If He did they would be saved.

Biblically, it is clear that the owner of “atonement” is God and not humans. The best illustration I have found of this is when the propitiation is seen in its rawest of form in the 1 John 2 passage, where the term is used in its base form in isolation and any and all other derivatives are used elsewhere. It is very instructive to try and understand what the writer means by we, us, and world. The term “world”, used by John in this passage is not ambiguous. He is discussing salvation (the application of the atonement) and how it relates to the creation that has an advocate and to those who do not, yet the propitiation is not in sway by either.

1 John 2:1-17 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; (2) and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world. (3) By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. (4) The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; (5) but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: (6) the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked. (7) Beloved, I am not writing a new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you have had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word which you have heard. (8) On the other hand, I am writing a new commandment to you, which is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true Light is already shining. (9) The one who says he is in the Light and yet hates his brother is in the darkness until now. (10) The one who loves his brother abides in the Light and there is no cause for stumbling in him. (11) But the one who hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going because the darkness has blinded his eyes. (12) I am writing to you, little children, because your sins have been forgiven you for His name’s sake. (13) I am writing to you, fathers, because you know Him who has been from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I have written to you, children, because you know the Father. (14) I have written to you, fathers, because you know Him who has been from the beginning. I have written to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one. (15) Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (16) For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world. (17) The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever.

As John would say, the love of God has been perfected in one particular group. Those that have the advocate have the application of the propitiatory. This is no way limits the propitiatory being viewed by all of creation. The “hilasmos” (vs. 2) is in view of those that have an advocate and those that do not. As the writer argues,…. those that have Christ are those that have an advocate,…. Which are those that keep His commandments because of the advocate (actually the advocate has fulfilled them and is interceding).

The “world” in verse 2, is the same “world” in verses 15 and following, and is teaming with meaning (very broad). There is no ambiguity in the passage. Some may think that this zaps “limited atonement” systems, but it really doesn’t. It simply states, that God applies the atonement that He possesses and provides…. in a perfect way without conforming to any system. God’s love is perfect. He brings perfect justice and mercy. Gods love includes all components of justice and mercy, not just the ones that we try and limit.

Unfortunately, this particular Piper sermon tends to limit or at least interpret the love of God into one corner of justice. The “In What Sense Did Jesus Taste Death for a Person in Hell?, is seems to me (probably not everyone), that John is trying to make an emotional plea when he says “If you say to me, then, that at the cross Christ only accomplished for me what he accomplished for those who will suffer hell for their sins, then you strip the death of Jesus of its actual effective accomplishment on my behalf, and leave me with what?—an atonement that has lost its precious assuring power that my sins were really covered and the curse was really lifted and the wrath of God was really removed”. I think John makes the actual atonement dependent upon feelings or in the sense of what it has done “for me”, instead of what it (the propitiation) has done for “God’s Glory.” John simply argues one side of the issues to make his point. He even tempers his argument earlier in the sermon. (Regardless of my thoughts of this one sermon, I regard John Piper as one of the churches most respected theologians. He has been indispensable to me personally!)

Blessings,
Chris

Chris Johnson

Tres Amigos,

I meant to say……

Unfortunately, this particular Piper sermon, that you have supplied, tends to limit or at least interpret the love of God into one corner of justice. The section “In What Sense Did Jesus Taste Death for a Person in Hell?, …. seems to convey to me,

sorry for the confusion,
Blessings,
Chris

ABClay

Brother Chris,

You said:

“I have not seen anyone so far that will disagree with the fact that God is the mover in salvation, really all things for that matter. In the case of salvation, ..being that mankind is not capable of coming to Christ without God first moving on the heart and salvation is all of God from beginning through eternity.”

With all due respect, I feel that you should probably talk to more of the “Calvinist Haters” than you have been. The general consensus that I am getting from people that I talk to is that they are somewhat semi-pelagian and believe that God made salvation possible to all people through the death of Christ on the cross, and He made propitiation for the sins of the world (in the sense of all humanity). And they often go to 1 John 2:2 for their “proof”.

While they confess with their mouths that salvation is all of God, these preach and teach that the whole of humanity is laid even and all have the same “availability” of salvation. What then is the mover? What then is the next step in their salvation? Well, they have to do something. They have to believe. It is if God has done all He can do to save the whole of humanity, and He is wringing His hands in heaven, hoping that some will believe.

Let me give you an example. This is not a southern baptist preacher, he is one of the KJV onlyist Fundamentals, but check this sermon out. You will not be able to stand to listen to the entire thing, so I will tell you the applicable portion to our discussion is about 19 minutes into the file. Here is the URL: http://www.faithfulwordbaptist.org/060706p.mp3

As to your comment on Piper, you said:
“I think John makes the actual atonement dependent upon feelings or in the sense of what it has done “for me”, instead of what it (the propitiation) has done for “God’s Glory.””

If this sermon was the only sermon of Piper’s that one ever listened to, then I can see how one can deduce that kind of sentiment. But you know, since he has been such a blessing to you, that Piper is all about giving Glory to God and he has repeatedly stated as much about the work of Christ on the cross.

It is also my understanding that John Piper believes that the love of God was expressed to all of humanity through the cross. How can one deny the grace that is extended to all of humanity, for we all are deserving of death the moment we are conceived. None of us deserve the rain, the sun, the beauty of creation. Piper doesn’t just restrict the benefits of the cross to the “elect” as some people do (I believe Pink is one of these).

If I have misunderstood the thrust of your statement, you have my apologies. It is late and I have much to do.

In Love,

ABClay

ABClay

A word about that link.

I believe this guy is absolutely wrong, but at least he is consistent. His preaches what he believes and the god that he is preaching about is the god that he has created in his own image. His god thinks, acts, reasons, and judges the same way that he does.

Thus says the Lord, “you thought I was just like you.” Psalms 50:21

As a side note, I listened to this guys “exposition” of John 6 and Romans 9 and he conveniently skips over those passages that are “hard”.

In Love,

ABClay

volfan007

abc,

the statement you make in #65 is not what most non calvinists believe. they do not believe that man can come to God on his own. they do not believe that God is wringing His hands…just hoping that someone will get saved. there are many non five pointers out here who believe that God is actively seeking the lost…calling out to the unsaved… convicting people of thier need for salvation. and yet, with God doing all the work for our salvation on the cross….and, with God initiating the work of grace in our hearts…still, man must resond. he has the responsibility to respond the working of God. iow, he has real choice. and, yes, 1 john 2:2 is a great verse…amongst many verses that show that grace is truly offered to all, and it’s not irresistible.

from my studies of the bible, i reject the fatalism of the dortian calvinists. and, i’m not a calvinist hater. i dont like extreme calvinists, because of the trouble they’ve caused in many churches that i know personally. and, i dont like the theology of the hyer calvinists. it certainly kills evangelism and missions amongst other things. but, i do not hate plain ole five point calvinists. i dont agree with them, but i dont hate them.

david

Chris Johnson

AB,

I have seen many, many semi-Pelagians in my day and their teams of pastors are still out in the world preaching the same lack of substance that their predecessors have preached throughout history (frankly it makes me puke). I would hope that the SBC is past that type of non-sense. But, that immaturity will continue to lift its ugly head not matter what, simply because the flesh is weak and likes to feel it is still in control.

My point in #63 was not to take away from the wonderful work that Piper does as he preaches the word of God. He is definitely a bright spot in the world of preachers and one that I respect greatly. And yes, this one sermon does not give his entire take on the subject of the atonement. My point was to say that in this post so far, I have not seen anyone that is arguing against the sufficiency of God unto salvation.

If anyone thinks that they have anything to do with their salvation, then they simply are mistaken according to God. God clearly does not depend upon humans to respond to Him. It is true that those He calls will respond though,..it is something they do… and “they” really do it. That is the power of the Gospel. It is not just some good news “story” or “headline”…it is the power of God unto salvation. God will not be mocked.

That is also the reason that the atonement is not diminished in any way whatsoever when given to the whole world. Scripture is replete with this truth. This does not mean that God applies the salvific benefit of atonement to the lost in any fashion whatsoever. Yet, salvation given to the whole world,….. and that none should parish…. will never lose any of its significance to the Glory of God…. and even in the event that it is seen and given to the whole world does not in any manner whatsoever lessen its application to the elect. God is the mover, and His desire to apply the atonement will not be lessened by its offering to all…..according to Him.

We tend to use terms like diminishing, or less value, etc. for the sake of emotion without understanding that God has spoken and that He is sovereign in all matters.

Again, for those that have commented on this post so far…, I’ve not seen anyone arguing that God is waiting on us, or wringing His hands, hoping that we will make a decision for Him. That would be foolish.

Blessings,
Chris

Strange BaptistFire » Blog Archive » Limited Atonement in Historical Theology

[…] This past February, Dr. David Allen, the Dean of the School of Theology at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, delivered two lectures from the book of Hebrews. In the first lecture, Dr. Allen argued for Lukan authorship of Hebrews and against the contemporary practice of sign gifts as found in modern charismatic movement. In the second lecture, Dr. Allen offered additional arguments for Lukan authorship of Hebrews and argued against Limited atonement. [Listen to the lecture HERE.] […]

Clones Reprise. « A Rose by Any Other Name

[…] The point of Debbie’s comment, Gordon, is that it is wrong take Spurgeon out of the context o… One could take Jesus out of context and make him contradict himself.  Why should we trust anything that a person says who operates this way? Just like Scripture, it matters what a person has said everywhere, not just the immediate text. […]

Daviel D'Paz

Dr. Allen tried his best to downplayed the “L” on the TULIP, but I think he did not do a fair job. If he was so careful with exegesis as he claims he is, Why he did not even mentioned John 6:37-40; 64,65?

Those texts CANNOT be ignored when you are trying to debunk Calvinism’s Limited Atonement. Jesus spoke very clearly WHY some Jews did not believe on HIM: Because they were not given to HIM by the Father. Simply as that. If Jesus had died for them also, they would believe on HIM for sure. But they did not. And this fact is a very troublesome for all Arminians.

Tahnk you.
Daviel

The Caner Clone Wars « A Rose by Any Other Name

[…] found this interesting at SBC Today.  The following is my […]

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