Limited Atonement and Unlimited Announcement
by Joseph Franks
We believe God knows absolutely everything. There is nothing he does not see coming. He is omniscient.
We believe God foreordains absolutely everything. He has a plan.
We believe God providentially guides everything. He is omnipresent and omnipotent, and he is performing his plan. A bird cannot fall from the sky, and a hair cannot fall from one’s head without God’s sovereign allowance. Actively and immediately, or passively and mediately, God is responsible for whatsoever comes to pass.
We believe God elects some to receive fair justice and others to receive free grace. From the beginning, there is Lucifer who is predestined to receive fair justice. Likewise, from the beginning, there are Adam and Eve who are predestined to receive free grace. Why does God not decide to save Lucifer and everyone? Why does God decide to save Adam, Eve, and anyone? One will have to ask the Lord. This author is not making up the story; he is merely presenting the facts.
We believe God writes names in his Book of Life. Even those who prefer not the previous paragraph believe this to be true. God has a book with particular names in it. This book he has penned before the beginning of time, and the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit have put it to memory. (Revelation 13:8; 17:8)
We believe Jesus saves some. It is not man’s charity, love, belief, faith, repentance, profession, baptism, or church membership that makes them right with God. These characteristics flow from the all-sufficient work of Jesus. Jesus lives for his friends and earns their righteousness. Jesus then saves by dying for his own and paying their debt. Those whom he represents, he saves through his atonement — and it is limited in scope. How does one know this? It is because the Bible says that Jesus saves, and the Bible states that not all on the earth are saved by Jesus. All those worked for and represented by Jesus will go to paradise. None worked for and represented by Jesus will be found missing around the throne. There is perfect correspondence between those represented by Jesus and those in the celestial choir.
We believe the Spirit regenerates some. How does one know this? The Bible says that all men reject God. All men have a hatred for the Father deep within their chest; they are all rebels. The Bible records that no man can come to the Son on his own; no one understands rightly; no one seeks God; all who are tainted by Lucifer leadership abhor the lordship of Christ. And yet, despite the world, the flesh, and the devil, men come running to Jesus in faith and repentance. Why do some come? Why does anyone come? Why did you come? Why are you coming? Men come freely to Jesus and the Gospel because the Holy Spirit is irresistibly and fantastically drawing them.
Therefore, knowing these truths, how should one proclaim this Gospel of free grace? Like the Farmer in the Parable of the Sower, Seed, and Soils, disciples should walk about scattering God’s Good News everywhere. Like a City on a Hill we should shine our light that all may see and be attracted to God’s glorious place of refuge. Like Joel in the Old Testament and Peter in the New, we should proclaim loudly:
… Everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. (Acts 2:21)
Friends, do not allow the biblical doctrine of particular redemption or limited atonement to trouble you. If you want Jesus, rejoice and come running. He is already coming to you. Kiss the Son and enjoy life in his arms. Everyone, anyone, whosoever — you who call upon the Lord right now, you will be saved. Make a decision. Repent. Have faith in Jesus. If you want him, he is available. I am calling you. He is calling you. Be saved today!
Secondly, do not allow the biblical doctrine of particular redemption or limited atonement to stifle your evangelistic zeal and practice. As a fisher of men, throw out your net and see what God throws in it. Some who reject the Gospel today, they are actually elect; they will be converted and saved tomorrow. Some who believe the truth of the Gospel today are not-elect; they are merely playing religious games, and they will prove themselves by walking away tomorrow. Bottom line, you cannot know who are God’s elect. Unlike the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, you are not privileged to read the Lamb’s Book of Life. Therefore, don’t worry about it as you share the Gospel with your family, friends, and neighbors. Yes, be humbled and happy about God’s Limited Atonement and your inclusion. This should thrill your soul. Then respond in reckless worship. All day long, everyday, in every place, to everyone, practice the Unlimited Announcing of God’s free and particular grace.