Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Refutation of Limited Atonement Part 2

On today's program I got back to the discussion of limited atonement. I primarily dealt with 1 John 2:2 and discussed John MacArthur's comments on the text which are used to support limited atonement. Here's the program.

I am still looking for financial contributions if you are able.


Nick said...

I like that you make a lot of good claims anti-Calvinist arguments that Catholics would accept. Overall, I think you were fair and thorough (employing good exegesis and logical consistency) in your rebuttal to MacArthur's claims.

One verse I think demonstrates that 1 John was not written to Jews is the very last verse: "Little children, keep yourselves from idols." By the time of Jesus' day, idolatry was non-existent in Judaism, but it was a very Gentile problem. This isn't definitive proof, but I think it's pretty reasonable.

I think the Lexical argument looking at the 20 or so times Kosmos is used in 1st John is most powerful since it's never used to mean "Gentile world," so I'm glad to see you used it.

I'd also appeal to 1 Corinthians 8:11, "take care that this right of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak. 10 For if anyone sees you who have knowledge eating in an idol's temple, will he not be encouraged, if his conscience is weak, to eat food offered to idols? 11 And so by your knowledge this weak person is destroyed, the brother for whom Christ died."
This "brother for whom Christ died" has gone apostate, since "destroyed" here signifies spiritual ruin.

I look forward to listening to other episodes.

Jordan Cooper said...

Thanks Nick, the text from 1 Corinthians is important in this discussion, and is also an affirmation of the reality of apostasy.

Steve Martin said...

Nice work!

My favorite is "Father forgive them...". Forgive his murderers?

Yes, He truly died for and forgives all.

"If we come to faith in Christ, God gets ALL the credit. If we do not, we get ALL the blame."

That is biblical.

Joe said...

Hi Jordan.

Enjoyed this podcast.

Couple things. First, I realize you did not deal with I Tim 2:4 in this program...but did not Augustine interpret this to be all "kinds" or "sorts" of men to be saved, and not as we Lutherans would hold to in that it is actually all people.

Second, as one that has been very much into Reformed thinking in the past...I am trying to try and see more clearly the idea that Jesus did die for all people. Since I have been mostly Reformed works for the past 20 years, loosening the idea of LimAton on my mind will take some time. Anyhow, I am wrestling with the idea that benefits of Jesus' death are of no affect to those who do not receive the gospel. It seems I would have to say that His death ultimately does unbelievers no good...which would be strange if He actually died for them.

Sorry if this does not make sense really, it is a bit foggy still in my mind and I look forward to hearing more from you on this topic in future podcasts.

Lastly, very unrelated, have you ever read the "Real Luther" by Franz Posset?

in Him,


Jordan Cooper said...


Yes, Augustine did interpret 1 Timothy 2:4 in the Calvinistic manner. Have you listened to my previous podcast on limited atonement? I deal with 1 Timothy 2:4 on that program.

I understand all of your questions on the issue. I would urge you to keep listening, as I will deal with other arguments. I do also have a paper on limited atonement on the website if you want to take a look at it. My most in-depth treatment of the subject is in my upcoming book on Lutheran and Reformed theology.

I actually have not yet read "the Real Luther" but I did read Posset's doctoral dissertation on Luther and Bernard of Clairvaux, which I very much enjoyed.

Joe said...

Hi Jordan.

I did listen to the first cast of LimAton (or perhaps only in part), but to be frank, will need to listen again. I normally listen right away to your podcasts...and it will be probably more beneficial to my permanent understanding and memory to listen to both back to back.

I am really looking forward to your 2 books!

I have read all your articles, and do appreciate them. The one on perseverance actually swung me over to the idea of one being able to lose faith/salvation. Hebrews has been always a trouble spot for me on the idea of Preservation as defined by a Reformed understanding...and your article made it clear to me of the Lutheran take on that topic.

Sorry to get off topic here...

But thanks for the conversation, and get a donate button on your blog already!...I am anxiously awaiting your books! :)

in Him,


David Gray said...

>>>Yes, He truly died for and forgives all.

So you are a universalist? He forgives all men?

Joe said...

Hi Jordan.

In your first podcast of LA, you mentioned that the Reformed have a confusing 2 fold "Will of God".

Perhaps I am missing your point or confusing categories...but it seems apparent that in some sense there one can distinguish between multiple "wills of God".

For example, He has a definite planned decretive will that will come to pass. He spoke the created order into being, the cross, etc.

And of course, He has a desired will. The 10 commandments, moral law, etc.

So I guess, I am puzzled at why this would be confusing.

in Him,


Jordan Cooper said...

Sure, there is a difference between what God decrees and the moral will of God. However, the Reformed go far beyond this when distinguishing between God's desire to save all, and a different will which decrees damnation for some of those same people.

Joe said...

Yes, but how does anyone escape some type of dual will with salvation as well?

God predestines some and not others and yet wants all to be saved.

If the only way to be saved is via predestine/gift/monergism/regenerated by God first...and all this by God, I am not sure how we as Lutherans do not end up with some sort of dual will. Concerning even salvation, a decretive will where some are to be saved base on His purpose, and a permissive will where anyone can be saved - but cannot be unless God acts on their behalf first.

If God must act before anyone will have faith, and He chooses not to act in this manner in some...then in one sense, He does not want them to be saved (though suppose we could use different language then this, as this sounds very heretical). And yet, we know from the rather clear references in scripture that He does will all to be saved as well. So unless scripture is contradictory, there seems to be a necessity of two wills with God concerning salvation.