Contend Earnestly: Does John 10:15 Prove Limited Atonement?: Christ Lays Down His Life For His Sheep

Friday, June 11, 2010

Does John 10:15 Prove Limited Atonement?: Christ Lays Down His Life For His Sheep


This post is taken from Calvin and Calvinism by David Ponter. David has helped me to understand further the atonement of Jesus. This site is legit. You really need to do some research here on the history of God's love, desire and extent of the atonement here. He has an amazing blog which shows the history of these debates. I want all to understand that this post is not to say we don't believe that the atonement was especially for the elect, but it is to show that it wasn't only for the elect of Christ. We believe in both unlimited and limited atonement. Namely, that Christ died for all, especially his sheep.

Christ Lays His Life Down for His Sheep (John 10:15): An Argument for Limited Atonement
By David Ponter


Part 1: The Critique


This argument for limited atonement works like this in a syllogism:

Major premise:

Christ lays down his life for the Sheep (John 10:15)

Minor premise:

The pharisees are not Christ’s sheep (John 10:26)

Conclusion:

Therefore, Christ did not lay his life down for the Pharisees.

Stated without the prefix comments:

Christ lays down his life for the Sheep
The pharisees are not Christ’s sheep
Therefore, Christ did not lay his life down for the Pharisees


The problem is that its formally invalid.

Lets use an analogy which follows the same form, yet clearly demonstrates the invalidity of the form of the argument.

John loves his children.
Sally is not a child of John.
Therefore, John does not love Sally.

This is an invalid argument. Sally could be John’s wife and mother to his children, and so another person whom John truly and rightly loves.

You can swap out any terms, and the result will be same.

What’s happened, is that the negative inference has been smuggled in, something like this.

The simple positive:

John loves his children

is converted into a simple negative

John only loves his children.

Then the syllogism is followed out:

John only loves his children.
Sally is not a child of John
Therefore, John does not love Sally.


That is now is a valid form of an argument.

And if we bring this back to John 10:15, the syllogism now looks like this with the smuggled in negation:

Christ lays down his life only for the Sheep
The pharisees are not Christ’s sheep
Therefore, Christ did not lay his life down for the Pharisees

Either consciously or unconsciously, many readers have converted “Christ lays down his life for the Sheep” as being identical or as entailing, “Christ lays down his life only for the Sheep.” However, this is is an invalid negative inference.

The problem is, the conversion of the simple positive to a universal negative. This is the negative inference fallacy that Dabney references:

In proof of the general correctness of this theory of the extent of the Atonement, we should attach but partial force to some of the arguments advanced by Symington and others, or even by Turrettin, e.g. that Christ says, He died “for His sheep,” for “His Church,” for “His friends,” is not of itself conclusive. The proof of a proposition does not disprove its converse. All the force which we could properly attach to this class of passages is the probability arising from the frequent and emphatic repetition of this affirmative statement as to a definite object.
Dabney, Lectures, p., 521.

There have been a few attempts by limited atonement advocates to claim that the negative inference fallacy does not apply in this case. These attempts are quite astounding. Imagine a Romanist saying that the proposition, “Justified by faith alone” does not apply here, such that we can make a converse positive inference, that we can be justified by faith and works. We cannot be arbitrary when it comes to enforcing the universal and standard rules of logical inference.

And it should be straightforward that one should never seek to establish a positive argument based on invalid inferences. Such attempts will always and everywhere be invalid. Even repeating the invalid inference ad infinitum will never make it valid.

What is more, with that aside, Scripture declares emphatically,

1 Corinthians 4:6 Now these things, brethren, I have figuratively applied to myself and Apollos for your sakes, so that in us you may learn not to exceed what is written, so that no one of you will become arrogant in behalf of one against the other.

No matter how tempting it is, no matter how important it is to one’s system, it is wrong to insert a negation into a verse where it was was originally present. This problematic is further exacerbated if after smuggling in the extra-textual negation, one then tries to sustain the case for limited atonement. This then becomes grounds for a circular argument.

Lastly, one should also keep in mind that readers of John’s Gospel should not jump to the hasty conclusion that because of what Jesus says in John 10, that the Pharisees are goats (in other words, reprobate). Rather, one cannot preclude the possibility that they are rebellious and wayward sheep:

Isaiah 53:6 All of us like sheep have gone astray, Each of us has turned to his own way; But the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him.

Here Isaiah speaks to the apostate house of Israel, as much as he does to the faithful, who have been, themselves wayward sheep. If this is correct, then the contrast would be between obedient sheep versus disobedient sheep (the Pharisees), but not between the elect and the non-elect.

Part 2: The Affirmation


Whats actually going on in John 10 is more like this:

John 10:11 “I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.
John 10:12 “He who is a hired hand, and not a shepherd, who is not the owner of the sheep, sees the wolf coming, and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them.
John 10:13 “He flees because he is a hired hand and is not concerned about the sheep.
John 10:14 “I am the good shepherd, and I know My own and My own know Me,
John 10:15 even as the Father knows Me and I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep.
John 10:16: “I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will hear My voice; and they will become one flock with one shepherd.


The point is not about the extent of Christ’s death at all, but the faithfulness, the loyalty of Christ to the sheep. The pharisees are the hirelings who abandon the sheep. Jesus is saying to them something like this, “I am not like you, who run away, rather I will lay my life down for the sheep, defending them to the end….”

Thus, the real emphasis and attention should be on this verse:

John 10:16 “I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will hear My voice; and they will become one flock with one shepherd.

In this verse alone we have election, Christ’s intent, and the effectual call.

When we put together v15 and v16, we see in the mind of Christ a special intention to gather and faithfully lay his life down for his sheep so that they may be saved to the uttermost. He came to earth, not as a hireling coming to a field, but to gather those given to him. This is the direction we should move in, not in pressing the limited extent of the expiation.

When rightly understood, then, the verse speaks to a special intent of the satisfaction, not to the extent of the satisfaction.




33 comments:

Chris Cole said...

Taken in isolation, it is presumptuous to insert "only" into 10:15. However, that doesn't address whether there are reasons that require the implied insertion of "only," whether logically or textually. To me, the biggest question is, Are there, or will there be, spirits in Hell for whom Jesus died? A general atonement requires an affirmative answer, but what a repugnant concept! Not only does it undermine the sufficiency of the atonement, I would suggest that it also lends itself to Arianism, since it implies the inability of Jesus to save His people. I would also point to the doctrine of reprobation. Paul talks about some vessels created for honor, while others are created for dishonor (Romans 9:21-22). If the Father has reprobated a certain section of humanity, and the Holy Spirit has determined not to work grace in them, yet the Son has chosen to die for them, then you must either believe in a war within the Godhead, or again slide into Arianism. A definite and particular atonement is required both to honor the deity and sufficiency of Christ and the sufficiency of His death.

David said...

Hey Chris,

You say:

Taken in isolation, it is presumptuous to insert "only" into 10:15. However, that doesn't address whether there are reasons that require the implied insertion of "only," whether logically or textually.

italics mine

David: The danger of approach is circularity. Gordon Clark came up with a wonderful and helpful metaphor. A man in trying to get water from his well, indoors to his kitchen only has a leaky bucket to draw and carry the water. The problem is, by the time he gets to his front door, the water in the bucket has drained away. So he goes and gets 5 more leaky buckets from somewhere, and imagines that he will get a bucket of water to his kitchen sink.

The point is, multiplying invalid inferences will never get one to a valid inference. If limited expiation and sin-bearing is true, then its true on other grounds, but not on the grounds of John 10:15.

All systematic must be built up from an inductive analysis of particular texts, exegeted soundly with the standard rules of inference. One should not drive exegesis by systematic theology. In other words, biblical theology is the bed-rock of systematic.

You say:
To me, the biggest question is, Are there, or will there be, spirits in Hell for whom Jesus died?

David: There will be some in hell, who while alive, had the satisfaction for them. But aside from that, Chris, isnt this just a rhetorical statement tabled to garner an emotional response?

Chris:
A general atonement requires an affirmative answer, but what a repugnant concept!

David: Feelings of course do not build exegetical cases.

Chris: Not only does it undermine the sufficiency of the atonement,

David: How so?

Chris:
I would suggest that it also lends itself to Arianism, since it implies the inability of Jesus to save His people.

David: Not at all; at least not for the version of satisfaction I hold to, along with Seth. The Augustinian position is that Christ died for all men, bearing the sins of all men, as to the efficiency of the satisfaction, for the elect as to the efficiency of the satisfaction.

This avoids the two extremes of the Arminian position, that Christ died equally for all, with no effectual intention to save any, and the strict "limited atonement" extreme which says he only died equally for all the elect.

Chris: I would also point to the doctrine of reprobation. Paul talks about some vessels created for honor, while others are created for dishonor (Romans 9:21-22). If the Father has reprobated a certain section of humanity, and the Holy Spirit has determined not to work grace in them, yet the Son has chosen to die for them, then you must either believe in a war within the Godhead, or again slide into Arianism. A definite and particular atonement is required both to honor the deity and sufficiency of Christ and the sufficiency of His death.

David: Not at all. This is common objection but one that has no teeth. The Father and the Son and the Spirit all elect some to life and passover others, ordaining them to punishment on account of their sin. The Father and the Son and the Spirit all determine that the Son should sustain a sufficient satisfaction for all men, wherein the Trinity may effectually save the elect.

For the persons of the Trinity, there is total agreement on the extent and the intent of the Atonement.

If you click on my name you will see a list of Augustinians and Calvinist who held to this. For example, All the major Reformers, themselves, to some leading puritans and American Presbyterians.

Lastly, if you want to keep discussing this, I am more than willing.

Thanks,
David

Redness said...

This form of universal atonement is Amyraldian not Calvinistic. I suggest you read "Calvin's Calvinism" by John Calvin as proof.

I can't help but think the reason for insisting upon a universal/hypothetical atonement for the non-elect is a general distaste for the idea of double predestination/reprobation. This is why you won't find in most copies of A. W. Pink's book The Sovereignty of God, his chapter on Reprobation. Certain publishers(B of T) see fit to leave it out (I have an intact copy by Baker Publishing).

Christ died for the non-elect... to what end? That they might be saved? How is that possible? If the natural man hates God and His laws, outside of the initial, regenerating work of the Holy Spirit how is it possible for them to be saved? It isn't. Man is in darkness and doesn't know, and will refuse to believe, he's condemned and that all his works are but filthy rags worth nothing to God.

I've listened to debates and those who hold that God "sincerely" desires the salvation of the non-elect make no sense and even admit that one must accept the idea of supposed contradictory "desires" in God. So, God has unfulfilled desires and desires that which He knows won't come to pass because He has ordained (willed/desired) that it NOT come to pass. It makes my head spin! What a bunch of nonsense.

For a good debate on the topic try: http://www.prca.org/audiosermons/ram-2/debate.html

David said...

i made a mistake:

Should read:
The Augustinian position is that Christ died for all men, bearing the sins of all men, as to the sufficiency of the satisfaction, for the elect as to the efficiency of the satisfaction.

David

Redness said...

Regarding the sufficiency/efficacy argument, John Calvin (Calvin's Calvinism) states:

"Georgius imagines himself to argue very cleverly, when he says, " Christ is the propitiation for the sins of the whole world. Therefore those who would exclude the reprobate from a participation in the benefits of Christ, must, of necessity, place them somewhere out of the world." Now we will not permit the common solutions of this sufficiently for all men; but effectually for his elect alone. This great absurdity, by which our monk has procured for himself so much applause amongst his own fraternity, has no weight whatever with me."

Reading this book will provide a clear understanding of the mind of Calvin regarding the limited atonement of Christ. He quotes much from the writings of Augustine and I can see would not be accepted in the modern "Calvinistic" churches today. Those who hold the views as stated herein are maligned and accused of being "hyper-Calvinists" going beyond and outside the scope of Calvin. This is a lie. Those of "Spurgeon Online", A Puritan's Mind (Matthew McMahon), and others who have accused the PRCA of being hyper-Calvinists should be ashamed of themselves for scaring people away from a ligitimate form of reformed thought. Instead, we are told the Arminians are better than they. What lies prevail amongst the church!

David said...

Hey Redness,

This form of universal atonement is Amyraldian not Calvinistic. I suggest you read "Calvin's Calvinism" by John Calvin as proof.

David: Ive read it. Ive read it many times. Ive read both translations a few times too. :-) The Cole translation is not a good, in case you are interested.

But Redness, have you read Luther, Musculus, Zwingli, Bullinger? The Augustinian doctrine of the unlimited satisfaction dates back to Augustine, of course, to Prosper, to Aquinas, and it was the view of the Reformers. It predates Amyraut by centuries.

Redness says:
I can't help but think the reason for insisting upon a universal/hypothetical atonement for the non-elect is a general distaste for the idea of double predestination/reprobation.

David: Okay, that does not help us who hold to both unconditional election and preterition and unlimited satisfaction as well.

Redness: This is why you won't find in most copies of A. W. Pink's book The Sovereignty of God, his chapter on Reprobation. Certain publishers(B of T) see fit to leave it out (I have an intact copy by Baker Publishing).

David: Well good for Pink. :-) But if we are talking about Reformed theology, lets go to the Reformation. :-)

Redness: Christ died for the non-elect... to what end? That they might be saved? How is that possible? If the natural man hates God and His laws, outside of the initial, regenerating work of the Holy Spirit how is it possible for them to be saved? It isn't. Man is in darkness and doesn't know, and will refuse to believe, he's condemned and that all his works are but filthy rags worth nothing to God.

David: Thats confusion. The classic Calvinist says that Christ died for all so that God for his part may save any man. The legal impediments on God's side can be dealt with.

Redness:
I've listened to debates and those who hold that God "sincerely" desires the salvation of the non-elect make no sense and even admit that one must accept the idea of supposed contradictory "desires" in God. So, God has unfulfilled desires and desires that which He knows won't come to pass because He has ordained (willed/desired) that it NOT come to pass. It makes my head spin! What a bunch of nonsense.

David: Ah I see. You deny the classic Calvinism altogether, and have embraced hypercalvinism. That explains a lot. You should read more Reformed writings, Redness.

Take care,
David

David said...

Redness cites Calvin:

"Georgius imagines himself to argue very cleverly, when he says, " Christ is the propitiation for the sins of the whole world. Therefore those who would exclude the reprobate from a participation in the benefits of Christ, must, of necessity, place them somewhere out of the world." Now we will not permit the common solutions of this sufficiently for all men; but effectually for his elect alone. This great absurdity, by which our monk has procured for himself so much applause amongst his own fraternity, has no weight whatever with me."

And then he comments:

Reading this book will provide a clear understanding of the mind of Calvin regarding the limited atonement of Christ. He quotes much from the writings of Augustine and I can see would not be accepted in the modern "Calvinistic" churches today. Those who hold the views as stated herein are maligned and accused of being "hyper-Calvinists" going beyond and outside the scope of Calvin. This is a lie.

David: You have some problems here, Redness. Calvin is clear on two things: 1) he grants the truthfulness of the classic efficiency-sufficiency formula, but claims it does not apply here. 2) he holds that John's intent is to limit the application of the benefit of the satisfaction to believers. He says this because his opponent is a true universalist, claiming that the benefit of Christ's satisfaction will even be applied to all men, and Satan.

David said...

[continued]

3) It is the same Calvin who said stuff like this:

And that speaks not only to those who are charged with the responsibility of teaching God’s word, but to everyone in general. For on this point the Holy Spirit, who must be our guide, is not disparaging the right way to teach. If we wish to serve our Master, that is the way we must go about it. We must make every effort to draw everybody to the knowledge of the gospel. For when we see people going to hell who have been created in the image of God and redeemed by the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, that must indeed stir us to do our duty and instruct them and treat them with all gentleness and kindness as we try to bear fruit this way.

But still Stephen had a special reason. He. was speaking to the Jews, who professed to be God’s people. ‘That then has to do with the ‘brothers’ Stephen was talking about at the outset. ‘That is the relationship we now have with the papists, although they differ from us. ‘They confess that Jesus Christ is the Redeemer of the world and then destroy his power while still retaining some sign of the gospel. They confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that what the Evangelists wrote about him must be adhered to as God’s truth, even though they do not believe it. So if we have that in common with the papists, there is some appearance of brotherhood. John Calvin, Sermons on Acts 1-7, Sermon 41, Acts 7:51, pp., 587-588.

Calvin makes this point many times through out his writings, from his early days to his latter days. You can see more here.

You can find Musculus, Bullinger, Zwingli and many others, testifying for unlimited satisfaction and universal redemption by going here.

Again, I can only encourage you to read Augustine, Luther, Musculus, Bullinger, Zwingli and other Reformers. Unlimited expiation was standard Reformation doctrine.

Redness:
Those of "Spurgeon Online", A Puritan's Mind (Matthew McMahon), and others who have accused the PRCA of being hyper-Calvinists should be ashamed of themselves for scaring people away from a ligitimate form of reformed thought. Instead, we are told the Arminians are better than they. What lies prevail amongst the church!

David: Naa, they are hypercalvnists. On every distinctive Herman Hoeksema posited, he departs from the Reformed faith. By distinctives I mean such things as denial of common grace, general love, the desire of God that all men be saved, eternal justification, and on and on. If Calvin had been alive in 1924, he would have been condemned by Hoeksema as a heretic, as holding to the 2-faced god theology of Janus, etc etc. The Heoksemians can easily call common grace Calvinists Arminians, pelagians, but get all bent out of shape when orthodox Calvinists push back and call the Hoeksemians hypercalvinists.

So this is Red Beetle?

Take care,
David

Redness said...

I like to be as clear as possible, so I'm asking for some clarification.:


1. Redness: Christ died for the non-elect... to what end? That they might be saved? How is that possible? If the natural man hates God and His laws, outside of the initial, regenerating work of the Holy Spirit how is it possible for them to be saved? It isn't. Man is in darkness and doesn't know, and will refuse to believe, he's condemned and that all his works are but filthy rags worth nothing to God.

David: Thats confusion. The classic Calvinist says that Christ died for all so that God for his part may save any man. The legal impediments on God's side can be dealt with.

'Christ died for all...' Are you saying that ALL the sins of ALL men (and women) were put on Christ at His crucificion so that he died for them? If not, please explain as I don't recall reading that anywhere (I would have noted it.).


. '...that God for his part may save any man." ??? That sounds like God left salvation open and not determined. It that what you mean to say?


2. Redness says:
I can't help but think the reason for insisting upon a universal/hypothetical atonement for the non-elect is a general distaste for the idea of double predestination/reprobation.

David: Okay, that does not help us who hold to both unconditional election and preterition and unlimited satisfaction as well.
1. When you say "preterition," what are you implying; that God merely passes over, but doesn't actively reprobate?
2. Define "unlimited satisfaction."

3.
3) It is the same Calvin who said stuff like this:

And that speaks not only to those who are charged with the responsibility of teaching God’s word, but to everyone in general. For on this point the Holy Spirit, who must be our guide, is not disparaging the right way to teach. If we wish to serve our Master, that is the way we must go about it. We must make every effort to draw everybody to the knowledge of the gospel. For when we see people going to hell who have been created in the image of God and redeemed by the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, that must indeed stir us to do our duty and instruct them and treat them with all gentleness and kindness as we try to bear fruit this way.

But still Stephen had a special reason. He. was speaking to the Jews, who professed to be God’s people. ‘That then has to do with the ‘brothers’ Stephen was talking about at the outset. ‘That is the relationship we now have with the papists, although they differ from us. ‘They confess that Jesus Christ is the Redeemer of the world and then destroy his power while still retaining some sign of the gospel. They confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that what the Evangelists wrote about him must be adhered to as God’s truth, even though they do not believe it. So if we have that in common with the papists, there is some appearance of brotherhood. John Calvin, Sermons on Acts 1-7, Sermon 41, Acts 7:51, pp., 587-588.

If this is about promiscuous preaching, I have no problem with that.


4. I'm not 'Red Beetle.'

zog said...

Seth,

You at one time were debating this issue with Turretinfan, what happened to the debate? It just seemed to die. Or in other words, who quit?

Chris Cole said...

It's probably not helpful to quote Calvin on the extent of the atonement. There have been books written claiming him for both sides, with copious quotes. The problem is that the issue didn't come up at that time. It was only dealt with systematically after the rise of the Remonstrants in the Netherlands. However, Redness is correct: the position advocated in this article is properly labeled Amyraldian, and has been rejected as error by the Reformed Churches, both Scottish and Continental. In response to the Remonstrants, the Synod of Dordrecht wrote, "it was God's will that Christ through the blood of the cross (by which he confirmed the new covenant) should effectively redeem from every people, tribe, nation, and language all those and only those who were chosen from eternity to salvation and given to him by the Father" (Second Head of Doctrine, Article 8). Someone may object that that statement isn't Scripture, which is certainly true; however, it does explicitly state the position of Reformed Orthodoxy. See also the Westminster Confession of Faith (VIII:5), which says, in part, that Jesus "purchased, not only reconciliation, but an everlasting inheritance in the kingdom of heaven, for all those whom the Father hath given Him." Also III:6, "Neither are any other redeemed by Christ, effectually called, justified, adopted, sanctified, and saved, but the elect only."

Redness said...

Thank you Chris.

In perusing Calvin in the Institutes and in Calvin's Calvinism, Calvin makes no absolute statement (that I can find) that 'Christ died for the elect only' yet throughout the text he APPLIES the atonement to the elect only by his continued use of the pronouns "us," "our," "we," and the term "the elect," etc. when speaking of the salvation of/in Christ. It is clear from the texts that these are statement regarding the faithful, they not used generally/universally.

I still have not heard nor read a sufficient statement on what is meant by the "sufficiency of the atonement." It is quite often used as the jumping board to a hypothetical atonement for the non-elect opening the possibility (in what way I've never heard defined- it just makes them feel better to have an all loving/saving god; and David Silversides (OPC) would have you be ashamed to believe otherwise.) of their being saved because God sincerely desires to save all. This is what I believed Calvin to be ridiculing Georgious for in my earlier post.

Because the sins of the reprobate were never laid on Christ, He did not atone for them or else they would not go to hell. But the reprobate do go to hell as definately as the elect WILL go to heaven.

David said...

Hey Redness,

You ask:
'Christ died for all...' Are you saying that ALL the sins of ALL men (and women) were put on Christ at His crucificion so that he died for them? If not, please explain as I don't recall reading that anywhere (I would have noted it.).

David: in classic Augustinian and Calvinism says that Christ was punished for the sins of all men. If you click on my name you can see many classic Reformers and Reformed affirming this.

Redness: ...that God for his part may save any man." ??? That sounds like God left salvation open and not determined. It that what you mean to say?

David: Not at all. I suspect this is what is happening. You have a theological schema in your mind about is and is not correct. When you "hear" certain words which dont fit the pattern you are used to and accept, you make an assumption that they must mean or relate to another pattern which you are used to, but do not accept. Hence you make these sort of conclusions or suggestions. In short, you are responding as if you hear Arminianism.

As to who taught what I am saying, again, click on my name and start reading.

Redness: When you say "preterition," what are you implying; that God merely passes over, but doesn't actively reprobate?

David: Sure, if you read folk like Turretin, Heppe, Zanchi and may others, election and preterition are unconditional actions of God where he elects or passes by a person, and his choice for either is not grounded in the merit or demerit of the person. On the other hand, glorification, while unconditioned, and damnation is conditioned. God ordains pre-damnation on account of sin. A' Brakel is very good on this.

With regard to sin, God never efficiently or immediately causes sin, symmetrically to the way in which he causes righteousness. For more on this go here.

David said...

continued:

Redness: Define "unlimited satisfaction."

David: Christ by suffering for sin, for human sin, for the sin(s) of every man, sustained a satisfaction universally sufficient for all.

Calvin:
And that speaks not only to those who are charged with the responsibility of teaching God’s word, but to everyone in general. For on this point the Holy Spirit, who must be our guide, is not disparaging the right way to teach. If we wish to serve our Master, that is the way we must go about it. We must make every effort to draw everybody to the knowledge of the gospel. For when we see people going to hell who have been created in the image of God and redeemed by the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, that must indeed stir us to do our duty and instruct them and treat them with all gentleness and kindness as we try to bear fruit this way.

But still Stephen had a special reason. He. was speaking to the Jews, who professed to be God’s people. ‘That then has to do with the ‘brothers’ Stephen was talking about at the outset. ‘That is the relationship we now have with the papists, although they differ from us. ‘They confess that Jesus Christ is the Redeemer of the world and then destroy his power while still retaining some sign of the gospel. They confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that what the Evangelists wrote about him must be adhered to as God’s truth, even though they do not believe it. So if we have that in common with the papists, there is some appearance of brotherhood. John Calvin, Sermons on Acts 1-7, Sermon 41, Acts 7:51, pp., 587-588.

Redness: If this is about promiscuous preaching, I have no problem with that.

David: Well it includes that. Calvin is clear, we preach the gospel to everybody because 1) they have been created in God's image, and 2) they have been redeemed by Christ. Calvin said this a few times. Again, to see more, click on my name, scroll down to the section on Calvin, and read.

Redness: I'm not 'Red Beetle.'

David: Okay, thanks It would not have made a difference to me, you just read like him.

David

David said...

Hey Chris

Chris said:
It's probably not helpful to quote Calvin on the extent of the atonement[...]It was only dealt with systematically after the rise of the Remonstrants in the Netherlands. However, Redness is correct: the position advocated in this article is properly labeled Amyraldian, and has been rejected as error by the Reformed Churches, both Scottish and Continental.

David says: Well once again, I can only encourage you to read the original Reformers, Musculus, Zwingli, Bullinger, and many others. What continental confession rejected Amyraldianism? The only confession that could be enlisted is the WCF. Yet on this there is some debate. Even Richard Muller notes that the WCF does not exclude a non-Amyraldian form of hypothetical universalism. And in fact, about 1/3 of the delated, according to reports, held to unlimited expiation. Many such delegates signed the WCF, as did later puritans, like Bates (who lated added his name to a letter and petition compiled by Manton and others). Its implausible to assume that all these men would so if they thought the WCF precluded them as well.

On the other hand, there were lots of confessions which endorsed unlimited satisfaction, such as the 39 Articles, the Heidelberg Catechism, the Second Helvetic Confession; to just name three. And a lot of confessions are just neutral, making no determination either way (eg Belgic confession).

Chris:
In response to the Remonstrants, the Synod of Dordrecht wrote, "it was God's will that Christ through the blood of the cross (by which he confirmed the new covenant) should effectively redeem from every people, tribe, nation, and language all those and only those who were chosen from eternity to salvation and given to him by the Father" (Second Head of Doctrine, Article 8). Someone may object that that statement isn't Scripture, which is certainly true; however, it does explicitly state the position of Reformed Orthodoxy. See also the Westminster Confession of Faith (VIII:5), which says, in part, that Jesus "purchased, not only reconciliation, but an everlasting inheritance in the kingdom of heaven, for all those whom the Father hath given Him." Also III:6,

Bold mine

David: Ive put in bold the key word there. As to effective redemption, only the elect are redeemed. All forms of hypothetical universalism and all advocates of all forms of hypothetical universalism, (included Twisse, Ursinus, Kimedoncius, Musculus, Bullinger, Zwingli, et al, would agree with that totally.

Chris: "Neither are any other redeemed by Christ, effectually called, justified, adopted, sanctified, and saved, but the elect only."

David: And that is the debated comment in the WCF. Some take this to preclude all or any form of unlimited expiation and redemption, while others say this does not preclude all forms of unlimited redemption.

I would encourage you to read some primary sources. I can only ask again if you have read any Musculus, Bullinger, Luther, Zwingli on this subject? I mean I can make you read them. I cant change your mind by pressing some magic button. All I can do is encourage you to read the primary sources.

Take care,
David

David said...

Hey there Redness:

You say: In perusing Calvin in the Institutes and in Calvin's Calvinism, Calvin makes no absolute statement (that I can find) that 'Christ died for the elect only' yet throughout the text he APPLIES the atonement to the elect only by his continued use of the pronouns "us," "our," "we," and the term "the elect," etc. when speaking of the salvation of/in Christ. It is clear from the texts that these are statement regarding the faithful, they not used generally/universally.

David: What does that establish exactly? The application of salvation is not universal. Everyone would agree with that. However, Calvin also said that Christ suffered for all, and redeemed all. The only alleged limited statement that can be found in Calvin his is comment to the Lutheran Heshusius. But even that's been challenged and refuted by recent scholars like Rouwendal.


Redness: I still have not heard nor read a sufficient statement on what is meant by the "sufficiency of the atonement." It is quite often used as the jumping board to a hypothetical atonement for the non-elect opening the possibility (in what way I've never heard defined- it just makes them feel better to have an all loving/saving god; and David Silversides (OPC) would have you be ashamed to believe otherwise.) of their being saved because God sincerely desires to save all. This is what I believed Calvin to be ridiculing Georgious for in my earlier post.

David: The attempt to attribute such motives to others in this manner is hardly an argument. Such strategies can be turned on their heads. For example, I could allege that the denial of common grace is grounded in an inordinate sense of power and elitism for hypercalvinists.

Speaking of hypercalvinism, I do want to ask, are you willing to read Calvin and the Reformers on general non-elect love, for example? Or on God's revealed will desire for the salvation of all men? Are you willing to have a conversation on that topic? I think thats actually more important than the question of the extent of the satisfaction.

Redness: Because the sins of the reprobate were never laid on Christ, He did not atone for them or else they would not go to hell. But the reprobate do go to hell as definately as the elect WILL go to heaven.

David: Basically, your argument is this: if God punished a man's sin in Christ, then he cannot at all punish that man again in his own person for his sin. Right? Where do you get that idea from?

Take care,
David

Turretinfan said...

Zog:

My understanding is that Seth gave up on the debate, but I'm open to being corrected about that.

- TurretinFan

Seth McBee said...

Zog.
Yeah...I think it was me that stopped. From what I remember, TurretinFan and I were really getting no where, so didn't see a reason to continue.

Redness said...

You say: In perusing Calvin in the Institutes and in Calvin's Calvinism, Calvin makes no absolute statement (that I can find) that 'Christ died for the elect only' yet throughout the text he APPLIES the atonement to the elect only by his continued use of the pronouns "us," "our," "we," and the term "the elect," etc. when speaking of the salvation of/in Christ. It is clear from the texts that these are statement regarding the faithful, they not used generally/universally.

David: What does that establish exactly? The application of salvation is not universal. Everyone would agree with that. However, Calvin also said that Christ suffered for all, and redeemed all. The only alleged limited statement that can be found in Calvin his is comment to the Lutheran Heshusius. But even that's been challenged and refuted by recent scholars like Rouwendal.

****That's interesting, I'll have to check it out.*****

Redness: I still have not heard nor read a sufficient statement on what is meant by the "sufficiency of the atonement." It is quite often used as the jumping board to a hypothetical atonement for the non-elect opening the possibility (in what way I've never heard defined- it just makes them feel better to have an all loving/saving god; and David Silversides (OPC) would have you be ashamed to believe otherwise.) of their being saved because God sincerely desires to save all. This is what I believed Calvin to be ridiculing Georgious for in my earlier post.

David: The attempt to attribute such motives to others in this manner is hardly an argument. Such strategies can be turned on their heads. For example, I could allege that the denial of common grace is grounded in an inordinate sense of power and elitism for hypercalvinists.
****I still have no decent treatment on what is meant by "sufficient atonement." Listening to Schwertley, in his series on the atonement, he states this... 'would Christ's atonement have been sufficient to save the whole world?' he said yes (I'd agree.). But that deals with a hypothetical. Why are we dealing in hypotheticals anyway?***
David: in classic Augustinian and Calvinism says that Christ was punished for the sins of all men. If you click on my name you can see many classic Reformers and Reformed affirming this.
***That's interesting, to what end did Christ die for the sins of all men (head for head)? What did it accomplish?

Redness: When you say "preterition," what are you implying; that God merely passes over, but doesn't actively reprobate?

David: Sure, if you read folk like Turretin, Heppe, Zanchi and may others, election and preterition are unconditional actions of God where he elects or passes by a person, and his choice for either is not grounded in the merit or demerit of the person. On the other hand, glorification, while unconditioned, and damnation is conditioned. God ordains pre-damnation on account of sin. A' Brakel is very good on this.

***interesting.***

Redness: If this is about promiscuous preaching, I have no problem with that.

David: Well it includes that. Calvin is clear, we preach the gospel to everybody because 1) they have been created in God's image, and 2) they have been redeemed by Christ. Calvin said this a few times. Again, to see more, click on my name, scroll down to the section on Calvin, and read.

***VERY INTERESTING***

Redness said...

Speaking of hypercalvinism, I do want to ask, are you willing to read Calvin and the Reformers on general non-elect love, for example? Or on God's revealed will desire for the salvation of all men? Are you willing to have a conversation on that topic? I think thats actually more important than the question of the extent of the satisfaction.

***If you want to give me a few titles, I'll put them on my list. However, as yet, I'm no more a hyper-Calvinist.***

John Owen

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

Redness said...

God's desire to save all.

Calvin (Calvin's Calvinism Sec. 2 Pgs 55, 56):

"The difficulty which, according to Pighius, lies in that other place of Paul, where the apostle affirms, that 'God will have all men to be saved, and come unto the knowledge of the truth' (1Tim. ii 4,), is solved in one moment; and by one question; namely, How does God wish all men to come to the knowledge of the truth? For Paul couples this salvation, and this coming to the knowledge of the truth, together. Now I would ask, did the same will of God stand the same, from the beginning of the world, or not? For if God willed, or wished, that his truth should be known unto all men, how was it that He did not proclaim and make known his law to the Gentiles also? Why did He confine the light of life within the narrow limits of Judea?" etc...

And Furthermore, "Nor must we disregard the express reason assigned by the Psalmist, 'Because the Lord loved thy father, therefore he chose their seed after them.' (Deut. iv. 37.) And why did God thus choose them? Not because they were, in themselves, more excellent than others; but because it pleased God to choose them 'for his peculiar people.' etc...

Lastly "... But as the continuance of this argument would render us too prolix, we will be content with taking one position more; that God after having thus lighted the candle of eternal life to the Jews alone, suffered the Gentiles to wander, for many ages, in the darkness of ignorance; and that at length, this special gift and blessing were promised to the Church, 'But the Lord shall arise upon thee ; and his glory shall be seen upon thee.' (Is. Ix. 2.) Now let Pighius boast, if he can, that God willeth all men to be saved!"

David said...

Hey there Redness:

Regarding Rouwendal, Go here for bibliographic information and his comment on the Calvin-Heshusius issue.

Redness: I still have not heard nor read a sufficient statement on what is meant by the "sufficiency of the atonement."

David: What don't you understand regarding this?

Redness again:

I still have no decent treatment on what is meant by "sufficient atonement."

David: Again, what about it that you do not understand?

Redness: That's interesting, to what end did Christ die for the sins of all men (head for head)? What did it accomplish?

David: He sustained a satisfaction sufficient for all sins, thereby removing all legal impediments to any many's salvation. Now because it seems you've embraced hypercalvinism, the offer of the Gospel being grounded in the removal of legal impediments will not mean much to you. I am hoping that at least you may understand what mainstream orthodox Calvinists have said on this.

Regarding Calvin, you say: VERY INTERESTING

David: I still have some hope that you may read some Calvin, some Bullinger, some Musculus on this.

Look at this Arminian statement:

"The same belongs to us at this day. For when the son of God, who is ordained to be judge of the world (John 5:22), shall come at the last day: he may well say to us: how now Sirs? You have borne my name, you have been baptized in remembrance of me and record that I was your redeemer, I have drawn you out of the dungeons where into you were plunged, I delivered you from endless death by suffering most cruel death myself, and for the same cause I became man, and submitted myself even to the curse of GOD my father, that you might be blessed by my grace and by my means: and behold the reward that you have yielded me for all this, is that you have (after a sort) torn me in pieces and made a jestingstock of me, and the death that I suffered for you has been made a mockery among you, the blood which is the washing and cleansing of your souls has been as good as trampled under your feet, and to be short, you have taken occasion to ban and blaspheme me, as though I had been some wretched and cursed creature. When the sovereign judge shall charge us with these things, I pray you will it not be as thundering upon us, to ding us down to the bottom of hell? Yes: and yet are there very few that think upon it."

This author is rehearsing the sort of thing Christ will be saying to reprobate on the day of judgment. What do you think about that? What would be your objection to it?

David

David said...

Redness:
If you want to give me a few titles, I'll put them on my list. However, as yet, I'm no more a hyper-Calvinist.***

David:

Which of the following doctrines do you affirm: 1) General non-electing love (as a disposition of favor) to the non-elect; 2) Common grace (as a favorable disposition) to all men; 3) A general non-electing mercy (as a disposition) to all men; 4) the well-meant offer of the gospel; 5 That God by revealed will desires the salvation of all men?


Redness cites Owen and the concluding assertion is: "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!"

David asks: 1) Since when did Christ's satisfaction satisfy for belief? 2) When Christ died on the cross, did sinners cease being sinners?

David said...

Now Redness quotes Calvin on God's desire to save all, or not.

Redness, you've taken us a long way to the subject of the extent of the atonement. And nothing you or Chris have said has had nothing to do with the original post. Isnt that interesting?

You cite Calvin apparently denying that God desires the salvation of all men. Firstly, your page range did not give me the actual comments. I assume you are using a different edition. In my Cole translation its 103-104. In the Reid translation, starts p108. Secondly, its always good to read and quote Calvin in context. In the first part Calvin uses a reductio against Pighius, if on his terms, his claims are true, then why is it not that all men have the Gospel. However, Calvin then gives his positive explanation of the text:

"But the difficulty is, I admit, not yet solved. Yet I have extorted this from Pighius, that no one unless deprived of sense and judgment can believe that salvation is ordained in the secret counsel of God equally for all. For the rest, the meaning of Paul is quite simple and clear to anyone not bent on contention. He bids solemn prayers be made for kings and princes in authority. Because in that age there were so many dangerous enemies of the Church, to prevent despair from hindering application to prayer, Paul anticipates their difficulties, declaring that God wills all men to be saved. Who does not see that the reference is to orders of men rather than individual men? Nor indeed does the distinction lack substantial ground: what is meant is not individuals of nations but nations of individuals. At any rate, the context makes it clear that no other will of God is intended than that which appears in the external preaching of the Gospel. Thus Paul means that God wills the salvation of all whom He mercifully invites by preaching to Christ." John Calvin, The Eternal Predestination of God, 108-109.

Ive collated all of Calvin's relevant discussions on 1 Tim 2:4 here. If you want to discuss Calvin on this, do you first concede that Calvin says that the will of God in view in 1 Tim 2:4 is the Revealed will?

David

Redness said...

If Christ died for the sins of the Reprobate, He must have purchased some benefit for them. How are they benefitted? That they might be forgive? on what condition if He NEVER intends to regenerate them?

If Christ died for the sins of the Reprobate, why do they still go to hell?

I give you a lengthy quote (with context) that Calvin does NOT hold that God wills (desires) the salvation of all men (In fact, he ridicules the notion). How can it therefore be a "hyper-Calvinistic" position?

Here's a quote from Calvin's Calvinism on the purposes of the Reprobate:

Calvin (Calvin'sCalvinism sec. 2, pg 55, 56.): "Hence it is that Augustine, after having treated of the elect, and having shown that their salvation is safely secured, under the faithful custody of God, so that no one of them can perish, makes these solemn and blessed observations; 'All the rest of mankind, who are not of this number (says he), but are of the same fallen mass, being ordained vessels of wrath, are born for the use and service of these elect one. For God created no one, even of them, at random, or by chance, or for nought....' and 'But God brings no one of these to spiritual repentance, and to reconciliation with himself! Although therefore these are born out of the same lump of perdition as the elect of God; yet by their hardness and impenitency of hear, they all, as fa as in them lies, treasure up unto themselves wrath against the day of wrath. While, out of this same fallen mass, God calls some to repentance by hs goodness and mercy; leaving these, then in just judgment, to their own destruction.' Thus Augustine."

***Note the purpose/design of the wicked.***

Doesn't sound like Augustine nor Calvin hold that God desires their salvation.

About the citations; the publisher is "General Books, LLC." I think it always best to cite sources and keep things in context.

David said...

David: Redness, I am now getting the distinct impression that you are avoiding my questions.

Redness says:
If Christ died for the sins of the Reprobate, He must have purchased some benefit for them. How are they benefited? That they might be forgive? on what condition if He NEVER intends to regenerate them?

David: Where from Scripture do find the idea that if Christ died for the reprobate he must have purchased benefits for them? How exactly does a penal satisfaction work for you? How exactly does a penal satisfaction purchase something?

Redness:If Christ died for the sins of the Reprobate, why do they still go to hell?

David: Because of their sins, Redness.

When Christ died on the cross, did the elect, in life, cease to be sinners? Yes or no?

Redness: I give you a lengthy quote (with context) that Calvin does NOT hold that God wills (desires) the salvation of all men (In fact, he ridicules the notion). How can it therefore be a "hyper-Calvinistic" position?

David: Let me try again, when Calvin closes out his discussion on 1 Tim 2:4, where he speaks of God's will as will revealed or not?

Redness: Here's a quote from Calvin's Calvinism on the purposes of the Reprobate:

[Augustine cut]

Redness: Note the purpose/design of the wicked.

Doesn't sound like Augustine nor Calvin hold that God desires their salvation.

David: You know that I am going to say that for both Calvin and Augustine, election and reprobation in no way negates that God desires the salvation of all men by revealed will. If you think you can show me how the former negates the latter, please do tell.

In Reformed theology, Redness, election and reprobation, as categories do not deny or negate the categories of God's general love, commmon grace, general mercy, or his revealed desire that all men be saved.

To that end, I can only ask again, in the bolded sections from Calvin's tract on Eternal Predestination, which I cited above, does Calvin, in reference to the will of God in 1 Tim 2:4 refer to that will as the revealed will?

I notice too that no only did you avoid answering all of my questions, you didnt address that Arminian quotation I supplied.

Is this avoidance going to be the shape of things to come, Redness? :-) Maybe the answers to all that will be in forthcoming replies from you?

If you are serious in this conversation, Redness, it has to be a two-way street. I as I am willing to interact with material you direct me to, you must be willing to interact with the material I direct you to. If not, then your motives are certainly suspect.

David

Redness said...

David: He sustained a satisfaction sufficient for all sins, thereby removing all legal impediments to any many's salvation. Now because it seems you've embraced hypercalvinism, the offer of the Gospel being grounded in the removal of legal impediments will not mean much to you. I am hoping that at least you may understand what mainstream orthodox Calvinists have said on this.

***What are the "legal impediments" that have been removed?***

Look at this Arminian statement:

(Omitted)

This author is rehearsing the sort of thing Christ will be saying to reprobate on the day of judgment. What do you think about that? What would be your objection to it?

***I don't listen to Arminians (especially about Christ's atonement) nor can I respond to such hypothetical statements made by men speaking "as Christ".

So far as I can tell, I'm still no hyper-Calvinist.***


David:

Which of the following doctrines do you affirm: 1) General non-electing love (as a disposition of favor) to the non-elect; 2) Common grace (as a favorable disposition) to all men; 3) A general non-electing mercy (as a disposition) to all men; 4) the well-meant offer of the gospel; 5 That God by revealed will desires the salvation of all men?
***I affirm none.***

Redness cites Owen and the concluding assertion is: "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!"

David asks: 1) Since when did Christ's satisfaction satisfy for belief? 2) When Christ died on the cross, did sinners cease being sinners?

***Regarding #1. I think you mean unbelief. Unbelief, lack of faith, faithlessness. These are condemned by God.

Revelation 21:6-8 (King James Version):
6And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. 7He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. 8But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.
Hebrews 3:10-12 (King James Version)
10Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do alway err in their heart; and they have not known my ways. 11So I sware in my wrath, They shall not enter into my rest.) 12Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.
Regarding #2. Of course not, but Christ died for our sins past, present and future.

David said: Redness, you've taken us a long way to the subject of the extent of the atonement. And nothing you or Chris have said has had nothing to do with the original post. Isnt that interesting?

***Who Christ died for, is the topic and that lay under the doctrine of the atonement."***

The Eternal Predestination of God, 108-109. ***I'll have to read it.***
David: Where from Scripture do find the idea that if Christ died for the reprobate he must have purchased benefits for them? How exactly does a penal satisfaction work for you? How exactly does a penal satisfaction purchase something?

*** Removal of a penal sanction sounds like a benefit. Explain it please.***
David: Let me try again, when Calvin closes out his discussion on 1 Tim 2:4, where he speaks of God's will as will revealed or not?
***If you're speaking of a commentary, I don't have that one.***

I notice too that no only did you avoid answering all of my questions, you didnt address that Arminian quotation I supplied.

Is this avoidance going to be the shape of things to come, Redness?
***Hey! I have 3 kids, a husband, a dog and a 200ft fence to paint; give me a break***

David said...

Hey there Redness,

Thanks for answering some of my questions.

My questinos:

Which of the following doctrines do you affirm: 1) General non-electing love (as a disposition of favor) to the non-elect; 2) Common grace (as a favorable disposition) to all men; 3) A general non-electing mercy (as a disposition) to all men; 4) the well-meant offer of the gospel; 5 That God by revealed will desires the salvation of all men?

Redness: ! affirm none.


David: Now we can move forward. So here is the problem. You say the theology outlined in my John 10:15 post is Amyraldian. I replied, after discerning your theological starting points, that you are hypercalvinist. We both claimed denials of each's charge.

The problem is, I can prove it, you cannot. Bare with me.

If you wish to honestly represent Calvin and Reformed theology, please take the time to click on the following links.

General non-electing love:

Calvin, Musculus, Bullinger, Luther, Zanchius, More here.

Common Grace:

Calvin, Bullinger, Turretin, a' Brakel, and others

The Well-Meant offer:

Calvin, and here, and here, Taffin, a' Brakel, and others.

God's desire that all men be saved by will revealed:

Calvin, here, here, here and here, Hyperius, Ursinus, Turretin, and many others here.


No PRC distinctive can be grounded in historic Reformed theology (eternal justification the only exception). The three points of common grace (Kalamazoo, 1924) is thoroughly rooted in Reformed theology, whereas the denials are departures.

On what basis could one claim that the theology of Herman Hoeksema, Homer Hoeksema, Herman Hanko, and the RPC has not gone over and above historic orthodox Cavlvinism, ie is not hypercalvinist?

Now here is the thing, Redness, an honest mind will look at the data I am sending your way, as much as is it humanly possible for sure. An honest mind will at least seek to interact with the data.

David

David said...

Re: Legal Impediments:

Redness: What are the "legal impediments" that have been removed?


David: the curse of holy law. Divine holy law issues forth a necessary condemnation against all sin and sinners. God cannot forgive any man, unless his holy law has been satisfied. The necessity of that condemnation is removed. So for example, why God can forgive any elect sinner, is only because the legal barrier, that necessary condemnation, has been removed. This then grounds the biblical invitation and call of the gospel. The sufficient satisfaction has the same function for all men.



Re: the Arminian statement:

Redness: I don't listen to Arminians (especially about Christ's atonement) nor can I respond to such hypothetical statements made by men speaking "as Christ".

The problem is, Redness, that Arminian was Calvin:

Behold our Lord Jesus Christ the Lord of glory, abased himself for a time, as says S. Paul. Now if there were no more but this, that he being the fountain of life, became a moral man, and that he having dominion over the angels of heaven, took upon him the shape of a servant, yea even to shed his blood for our redemption, and in the end to suffer the curse that was due unto us (Gal 3:13): were it convenient that notwithstanding all this, he should nowadays in recompense be torn to pieces, by stinking mouths of such as name themselves Christians? For when they swear by his blood, by his death, by his wounds and by whatsoever else: is it not a crucifying of God’s son again as much as in them lies, and as a rending of him in pieces? And are not such folk worthy to be cut of from God’s Church, yea, and even from the world, and to be no more numbered in the array of creatures? Should our Lord Jesus have such reward at our hands, for his abasing and humbling of himself after that manner? (Mich 6:30) God in upbraiding his people says thus: My people, what have I done to you? I have brought you out of Egypt, I have led you up with all gentleness and loving-kindness, I have planted you as it were in my own inheritance, to the intent you should have been a vine that should have brought me forth good fruit, and I have tilled thee and manured thee: and must thou now be bitter to me, and bring forth sower fruit to choke me withal? The same belongs to us at this day. For when the son of God, who is ordained to be judge of the world (John 5:22), shall come at the last day: he may well say to us: how now Sirs? You have borne my name, you have been baptised in remembrance of me and record that I was your redeemer, I have drawn you out of the dungeons where into you were plunged, I delivered you from endless death by suffering most cruel death myself, and for the same cause I became man, and submitted myself even to the curse of GOD my father, that you might be blessed by my grace and by my means: and behold the reward that you have yielded me for all this, is that you have (after a sort) torn me in pieces and made a jestingstock of me, and the death that I suffered for you has been made a mockery among you, the blood which is the washing and cleansing of your souls has been as good as trampled under your feet, and to be short, you have taken occasion to ban and blaspheme me, as though I had been some wretched and cursed creature. When the sovereign judge shall charge us with these things, I pray you will it not be as thundering upon us, to ding us down to the bottom of hell? Yes: and yet are there very few that think upon it. John Calvin, Sermons on Deuteronomy, Sermon 33, 5:11, p., 196.

Redness: So far as I can tell, I'm still no hyper-Calvinist.***

David: On all counts you are denying Calvin's Calvinism.

David said...

I had asked: 1) Since when did Christ's satisfaction satisfy for belief? 2) When Christ died on the cross, did sinners cease being sinners?


Redness: Regarding #1. I think you mean unbelief. Unbelief, lack of faith, faithlessness. These are condemned by God.

David: How is that an answer? Unbelief is a lack of something, which finds expression is disbelief. Belief is substantive state of action. And so, a penal satisfaction makes restitution to the offended party. How does a penal satisfaction make restition for belief?


Redeness:
Revelation 21:6-8 (King James Version):
6And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. 7He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. 8But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

David: Christ as messiah and mediator gifts salvation, quenches the thirsty... gotcha on that. But how does a penal satisfaction satisfy for belief? We are talking about the penal vicarious action of making satisfaction for transgression.

Redness cites:

Hebrews 3:10-12 (King James Version)
10Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do alway err in their heart; and they have not known my ways. 11So I sware in my wrath, They shall not enter into my rest.) 12Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.
Regarding #2. Of course not, but Christ died for our sins past, present and future.

David: same thing again. Christ satisfies for the sins of unbelief (granted) but how does a penal satisfaction satisfy for belief? Clearly youve moved out of penal categories, Redness.


Redeness: Who Christ died for, is the topic and that lay under the doctrine of the atonement.

David: This topic has become only a small component of your body of assertions, Redness. Ive been the one who has brought you back to it.


Redness: The Eternal Predestination of God, 108-109. ***I'll have to read it.***

David: I already posted the relevant section in a previous comment. Please scroll up and I am sure you will find it.

Re: Penal satisfactions purchasing things

Redness: *** Removal of a penal sanction sounds like a benefit. Explain it please.***

David: Satisfactions of a penal kind deal with loss, with transgression. A man lays a charge upon another man. There is an obligation which is demanded. Penal satisfactions discharge those obligations. In the case of humanity, all have sinned and so are under the obligation for the law. This law inexorably condemns man. By penal satisfaction, Christ can now pardon any man, in such a way that the law is not compromised. The law seeks a victin for its satisfaction-seeking retribution. Christ was that victim. And given that Christ did not suffer so much for so much sin, but an infinite satisfaction for all sin, pardon can now he extended to any man.


Re: the non-answering of my questions.

Redness: Hey! I have 3 kids, a husband, a dog and a 200ft fence to paint; give me a break

David: Nope, sorry. No grace here. You make an assertion, I have the right to call you on it. :-) But the answer is to slow down, Red.

Its best to not make general assertions on a range of topics, stay with one point at a time.

David

Redness said...

I would really like to thank you for taking the time to debate/discuss this with me. It's been very interesting and enlightening. Though I don't accept what you say (I see NO treatment of a general, "legal satisfaction" being made by the atonement taught ANYWHERE in the Bible), I will definately look into it further (particularly Calvin and Baxter and others.).

Regarding the quote you gave, I don't care who does it, no one is allowed to put words into God's mouth. I think it was terribly wrong of the translators of the Geneva Bible (?) to insert their own commentary into the book as well. In context, I'm not guilty of doing what Calvin is chastising the people for oath making (as far as I can tell.)

Also, I'm not a member of the PRCA. I would be, but I don't celebrate xmas and I know that will become problematic.

Best wishes,

Redness

Redness said...

I would really like to thank you for taking the time to debate/discuss this with me. It's been very interesting and enlightening. Though I don't accept what you say (I see NO treatment of a general, "legal satisfaction" being made by the atonement for every human being taught ANYWHERE in the Bible), I will definately look into it further (particularly Calvin, Baxter and the Marrow Men).

Regarding the quote you gave, I don't care who does it, no one is allowed to put words into God's mouth. I think it was terribly wrong of the translators of the Geneva Bible (?) to insert their own commentary into the book as well. In context, I'm not guilty of doing what Calvin is chastising the people for; oath making (as far as I can tell).

Best wishes,

Redness

David said...

Hey Redness,

No Worries, thanks.

Two things to keep in mind,
1) the entire Reformation stands against you in two ways; A)it uniformly testifies to the doctrines of general love, the well-meant offer, common grace and God's revealed desire for the salvation of all; B) it affirms a universal satisfaction for all sin. In your distinctives you stand opposed to the Reformation.

2) There are plenty of verses which also testify to unlimited satisfaction, Jn 1:29, 1 John 2:2 for example, also 1 Tim 2:5-6, etc etc.

Thanks and take care,
David

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