Steven M. McCalip
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First, let’s get one thing clear about Calvinism’s “limited atonement” doctrine: it is the preaching of a false gospel. How can I make such a bold and judgmental claim? I can do so because I can prove that Christ’s blood paid for sinners who ended up in hell which is directly contrary to Calvinism’s limited atonement gospel. Calvinists teach that Christ died only for a select few individuals called the elect, so most of the world did not have its sins paid for by Christ. The gospel spelled out in 1 Corinthians 15 applies to all men, but I won’t have to argue what the word “us” or “all” means to show you that. Nevertheless, it is needful to remind you what the gospel includes first and foremost according to the apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:1 and 3:
“Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand…For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures…”
The gospel itself is laid out by Paul, and the first thing he says about that gospel is that “Christ died for our sins.” If we are in error on whose sins “us” refers to, we are in error on the gospel itself, and that is why it is so critical that we examine whether Christ died for EVERYONE’s sins. One way to study that is to see how the blood of Jesus paid for those even in hell.
Let me give you two examples that prove that Christ’s blood paid for the sins of people who ended up in hell, and this teaching in turn shows that Jesus’ atonement is not limited to the elect (for they don’t go to hell obviously), but applies to everyone, even false prophets and those who go to hell. Let’s look first at a verse in Hebrews chapter 10 that I have never heard discussed by Calvinists and for good reason: It completely annihilates the teaching that God died only for the sins of the “elect.” You will find out why next.
“But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries. He that despised Moses’ law died without mercy under two or three witnesses: Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?” (Heb. 10:29).
The context of this paragraph is talking about the adversaries of God and those who “died without mercy,” so this can in no way can refer to God’s people, the elect, or those who would become elect later. These people “died without mercy“; therefore, they went to hell without the mercy of God saving them later. The fact that this verse is referring to those who went to hell is shown by further evidence: they receive “sorer punishment” than those who despised Moses’ law (and those people also went to hell, for those were the ones who died without mercy originally). They receive “sorer punishment, for they have “trodden underfoot the Son of God.” Furthermore, these adversaries of God who will die without mercy have “counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith HE WAS SANCTIFIED, an unholy thing” and “despised the Spirit of grace.”
But notice that these same wicked people that are going to die without mercy are said to be “sanctified” by the “blood of the covenant.” They are sanctified by the blood of Jesus Christ under his blood covenant. They were sanctified by Christ’s blood; however, they didn’t receive it. Nevertheless, they could have received it, for it was provided for them, and the evidence is unmistakable: The scriptures say “he was sanctified” by Christ Jesus’ blood. The Calvinist says no elect whatsoever were ever sanctified by the blood of Jesus. They adamantly proclaim that only the elect were sanctified, bought, and redeemed by the blood of Jesus. All of them agree with that.
Could this proof that even people in hell had their sins paid for be any clearer? This verse cannot be refuted by the sophistry and beguilement of Calvinism in any real or substantial way. The only possible way they will try to get around it is to say these people were despisers who got saved later, but scripture says these people receive “sorer punishment” than those who “died without mercy” in Moses’ day. To receive a “sorer punishment” than dying without mercy is not talking about anyone going to heaven. You cannot die without mercy and go to heaven. They are receiving a much “sorer punishment.” They will suffer even more than those in Moses’ day. They will receive the “greater damnation” as Jesus himself taught.
This one example must be answered by Calvinists, yet it cannot be. Hebrews 10:29 alone overthrows limited atonement, but for those who scream it’s just one verse, there are more. You see, this example and the one following avoid the trap that Calvinists get us into, and that is discussing whether “us” refers to everyone or just the elect, or whether “all” refers to Christ dying for the elect or everyone. Even though I can prove and have proven in other articles I wrote that “all” and “us” mean “everyone” in the verses related to atonement, I don’t have to prove that here, and that is the beauty of these examples. Let me give you another example that is unanswerable and proves that Christ’s blood paid for the sins of false prophets that ended up in hell. Let’s look at 2 Peter chapter 2:
“But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lordthatboughtthem, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.”
Notice that these are false prophets and that many receive swift destruction. Granted, false prophets can be saved and some will come to the Lord, so the Calvinist will argue that some of these are “elect.” But, some also go to “swift destruction,” and these are “denying the Lord that bought them”-the false prophets are denying that the Lord bought them with his own blood. The Lord bought false prophets with his blood that repent later and that will end up going to hell in swift destruction, so the Calvinist is at a complete loss to explain this passage; therefore, most just ignore it. This passage completely overthrows “limited atonement” that blasphemously says Jesus paid for sins of only the “elect.” Jesus paid for the sins of false prophets that went to hell, and scripture just proved it.
Dear Calvinist reader, if Christ paid for the false prophets who are in hell right now, then his blood pays for everyone. Ask the Lord to show you that his blood and its application to our lives is not limited in its scope. The blood of God Almighty was the price for the sins of the whole world, and that holy blood redeemed the sins of every person that has ever lived.
If you want further evidence that these false prophets, whom the Lord bought with his blood, went to hell, look at some more of this same passage, talking about these same false prophets:
And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not. For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment…
Many of these same false prophets will suffer, according to the above verse, “damnation,” “judgment,” “hell,” and “chains of darkness.” Undeniably, then, many of these false prophets do not repent and end up in hell, and despite all that, scripture says these false prophets were purchased and redeemed by “the Lord that bought them.” There is no way of getting around the fact that these eternally damned people were atoned for by Christ’s blood. The only possible excuse a Calvinist could make was that ALL these prophets ended up repenting and believing. Scripture refutes that easily and shows that many were damned as shown above. Therefore, you have eternally damned, wicked, un-elect people who scripture says the Lord “bought.” If he bought them, he did it with his blood. That shatters limited atonement in and of itself. The Calvinists’ mouths must be stopped, and they can be with these verses.
As a last nail in the coffin, here is further proof from the same passage in 2 Peter that many of these false prophets and false teachers went to hell. Bear in mind again, reader, that the word of God says these same people “denied the Lord that bought them.” Jesus Christ bought with his own blood these “cursed children” as it says below who are the same false prophets and teachers mentioned above. They are in darkness “reserved for ever”:
“But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you; Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children…These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever.2 Peter 2:1-4, 17
Based on the above verses, limited atonement, the damnable doctrine of Calvinism, must be rejected. Some Calvinists will say they can’t answer some scriptures and aren’t sure about others, but these verses leave no room for ambiguity. They clearly show lost, false prophets and teachers ending up in hell but were still bought with the blood of Jesus Christ. In addition, it says these people were also sanctified by that same blood. If you are Calvinist and are ignoring these scriptures, I implore you to ask yourself why. These passages aren’t doubtful. They are plain and easily understood. If you as a Calvinist don’t want to believe what these verses say, then you should recognize that your tradition of man is more important to you than scripture. That is a frightening place to be, dear Calvinist friend.
May 30th, 2008 at 4:02 pm