"One who really loves another is not merely moved by the desire to see him contented and healthy and prosperous in this world. Love cannot be satisfied with anything so incomplete. If I am to love my brother, I must somehow enter deep into the mystery of God’s love for him. I must seek the life of the Spirit of God breathing in him. And I can only discern and follow that mysterious life by the action of the same Holy Spirit living and acting in the depths of my own heart."
|~ Thomas Merton|
"for those whom he foreknew, he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined, he also called, and those whom he called, he also justified, and those whom he justified, he also glorified."
|~ Romans 8:29-30|
I believe in Limited Atonement because that is what the Bible teaches. In Isaiah 53 we see the prophetic foretelling of the coming of the Messiah and in verse 8 we see that he was “stricken for the transgressions of my people” that is the people of God, Israel. Now this understanding of what it means to be true Israel get’s radically reoriented in the NT, but not in such a way that the atonement becomes unlimited. In John 6:39 we see that Israel is “all that He [God] has given me [Jesus]” and in the next verse that Israel is “everyone who looks on the Son and believes” notice that in verse 40 “everyone who looks on the Son” is the same people that God gave to Jesus. Then we see in Ephesians 1:4 that God chose these people “from before the foundations of the earth” and that through the atonement they “should be holy and blameless before him.”
Now, back in Isaiah 53:11-12 we see that the Messiah has “made many to be accounted righteous” and that “he bore the sin of many.” The “many” in these two verses corresponds back to “my people” in verse 8. All of this is pointing back to the idea God was and is under control of the atonement and that it was never intended for those who would never receive it. Could God have atoned for every single person to ever live? Was he able to do that? Sure, he could have done that. But that is just not what the atonement set out to do. There isn’t a universal, limitless, fee-for-all atonement. It is limited, or to use a better/more accurate term… definite.
There are more verses that point to this idea, but for the sake of brevity, I’ll just let that be that.
"The fear of God is the death of every other fear; like a mighty lion, it chases all other fears before it."
| ~ Charles Spurgeon. mmmm (via prevailzine)|
"Are you becoming more sweet-spirited, more like Jesus? Are you looking soberly in the mirror each day and praying, ‘Lord, I want to conform to Your image in every area of my life’? Or has your bitterness taken root, turning into rebellion and hardness of heart? Have you learned to shield yourself from the convicting voice of God’s Spirit?"
| ~ David Wilkerson (via kvtes)|