December 06, 2006

Particular Redemption - Wednesday

Why election isn't the big deal

Although most antiCalvinists are hung up on the whole election issue, election really isn't the foundation stone that nonCalvinists make it out to be. Election itself saved no one; it only marked out particular sinners for salvation. Those chosen by the Father and given to the Son had to be redeemed if they were to be saved. In order to make their redemption sure, Jesus Christ came into the world, taking on a human nature so that He might identify himself with his people and act as their legal subsitute. Action on behalf of his people, Christ kept God's law and worked out a perfect righteousness that is credited to them the moment they are brought to faith in him. Because of what Christ did on the cross, they are reckoned righteous before God. They are freed from all guilt and condemnation as the result of what Christ suffered for them. Through his substitutionary sacrifice, he endured the penalty of their sins and thus removed their guilt forever. So when his people are joined to him by faith, they are credited with perfect righteousness and are freed from all guilt and condemnation. They are saved, not because of what they themselves have done or will do, but solely because of Christ's redeeming work.

So then, the verses that speak of this say that Jesus came to save his people. It is clear that the intention is not that Christ in his death is making a potential atonement for people—one that will be applied when they "accept him as their personal Lord and Savior," but one that has been purchased and accomplished. When Jesus on the cross said, "It is finished," it was finished. The salvation has been bought, the penalty had been paid, and the sins of those for whom he was making atonement had been atoned for.

Particular Redemption from the text of scripture:

Luke 19:10
For the Son of man came to seek and to save the lost."

2 Corinthians 5:21
For our sake he [God] made him [Christ] to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
italics added for emphasis

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