Limited and Unlimited Atonement

In an effort to explain the how the atonement is both limited and unlimited at the same time, the pastors of Berean have drafted what we believe the Bible teaches.

Atonement: While we acknowledge the truth that there is an “elect of God,” we believe the Bible teaches that Christ—the Lamb of God—died for the sins of the whole world and not just the “elect”(John 1:29, 3:16-18, 14:1; Rom 5:6; 2 Cor 5:15; Col 3:12; 1Tim 1:15, 2:4-5Heb 2:9; 1 John 2:2; 4:14; 1 Pet 1:21; 2 Pet 2:1). We believe the atonement becomes effectual for the individual based upon his or her repentant faith in the Person and salvific work of Christ at their moment of conversion (John 3:3; Acts 20:21; Rom 1:17; 10:9-14; Eph 2:8; 1 John 5:1). We reject the teaching that all men will eventually be saved (Universalism) and the doctrine that Jesus’ death and shed blood was only for the elect (pure Five-Point Calvinism). We believe the atonement is limited in the sense that not all will be made right with God because not all will believe in the Savior (John 4:42; 1 Tim 4:10), but we also believe it is unlimited in the sense that the potential exists for anyone who believes in the Truth of the Gospel to be declared righteous and reconciled to God (John 1:7, 14:6; Rom 1:16; Col 1:21). Only God can reconcile the paradox of an atonement that is both limited and unlimited.

1 comment:

  1. So essentially you simply reject Limited Atonement. Limited Atonement does not reject the idea that the blood of Christ is not effective for all people or even that the invitation is not given to all men. But because all men are dead in sin and are blinded by Satan (Eph. 2)then only the elect are given the faith it takes to respond to the Gospel.

    I would encourage you to read Calvin's commentary on John 3:16. But essentially he says the same thing as I have, that the Gospel is open to all men, but faith is not common to all men. Faith is only given to the elect.

    Perhaps you do believe in both views, but I would submit to you that your view as described is simply classic Unlimited Atonement...perhaps your understanding of five point Calvinism comes from modern writers which often speak on Calvin without knowing him or even what the Synod of Dort wrote.