Atonement

31 days big

Bless the Lord, oh my soul. There are a lot of theories of atonement out there. A *lot* of them. This is going to take a bit.

First there is limited atonement, the Calvinist response. Then there are all the various possibilities when it comes to unlimited atonement. Examples: ransom theory, moral influence theory, satisfaction theory (which is related to penal substitution…)

A few days.

To begin, what is atonement? To make amends for a wrong one has committed, to apologize, to make reparations for. Reparations means to restore or repair something. So the wrong in question is sin, and the thing being restored is our relationship with God. How does that happen?

Guys, I’m holding out an Easy button for you. Yep, Christ’s death on the Cross! YAY!

So any intense theological discussion on atonement is discussing what exactly happened on that Friday on that hill.

Let’s start with limited atonement, the L in TULIP. This is basically another predestination argument, really. Did Christ die for all people, but only if they accept His blood? Or did He completely secure the salvation of those who are part of the elect? We know that not all people end up atoned for, so in which direction is atonement limited?

Those who believe in “limited atonement” think that Christ’s death only secured salvation for some people, but did so completely (as opposed to potentially securing salvation for all people). Meaning that Christ’s death absolves the elect (ahem) without any effort on their part, completely.

Per limited atonement, Christ’s death is said to have actually and completely accomplished salvation, after all, and if salvation had to be accepted, His death only potentially accomplished salvation. Further, He was sent into the world to save those the Father had given to Him.

Some scripture for you:

Romans 5:8-10  but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God.  For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.

2 Corinthians 5:18-19 All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself,not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.

Colossians 1:21-22 And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him,

Titus 2:14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.

John 10:14  I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me

Ephesians 1:7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace

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Published in: on October 19, 2013 at 8:43 pm  Comments (1)  

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