<<<Next, let us agree and accept that *no* true Christians are 100% error-free in their doctrines and that all true Christians psychologically, but mistakenly deny at least one Christian truth or another (or more likely it is a few dozen….. :-) …..). For example, Baptists deny the legitimacy of infant baptism and so implicitly (logically) they deny the Calvinist's view of Covenant, Election and many other related matters, even while, like for example Spurgeon, some of them (inconsistently) affirm many of those very same truths. (For my purposes I don't care for now to dispute about this. As far as my present argument is concerned, it will work *equally* well if paedobaptism is denounced as the false doctrine, and Baptists are seen to be consistent and Calvinists as the ones who are inconsistent.)
Or, many so-called Christians deny that logically valid deductions (i.e. Logic, or Good and Necessary Consequence) from the Bible are just as binding and authoritative as express statements in the Bible. So they unwittingly and implicitly in fact deny the very authority of the Bible, effectively denying all Christian doctrines and so on and so forth (About the Necessary Consequence e.g. see Trinity Review http://www.trinityfoundation.org/reviews/journal.asp?ID=095a.html ). Many other examples could be given.
So, let us simplify and generalise and call all these disputed doctrines, which genuine Christians psychologically but erroneously deny or reject, as doctrine X or doctrine Y.
Is Marc excluded and the only perfect, 100%, doctrinally error-free Christian believer ever to live on Earth? I think not. So, consider this scenario:>>
So Karel makes an argument that has been made many times by tolerant Calvinists: Denial of doctrine A means denial of doctrine B means denial of doctrine C means denial of doctrine D, etc., etc., which means denial of doctrine Z, which is a denial of the gospel. Strings of doctrines linked together finally come down to denial of the gospel; thus, denial of doctrine A, even though not directly connected with the gospel, denies the gospel further on down the chain of doctrines. Thus, if Marc and his ilk are consistent, they would have to say that anyone who denies doctrine A is unregenerate.
But ... I'm talking about a DIRECT DENIAL of the ATONEMENT here!! None of this "denial of A means denial of B means denial of C means denial of the gospel." The ATONEMENT is at the very heart of the gospel. It occupies the central position in the gospel. Who here would deny that the ATONEMENT occupies the central position in the gospel? And universal atonement is a DIRECT DENIAL of gospel atonement! Universal atonement is DIAMETRICALLY OPPOSED to gospel atonement! Universal atonement is the ANTITHESIS of gospel atonement! Universal atonement means something TOTALLY DIFFERENT than gospel atonement! No need to go through a convoluted series of "this doctrine denies this doctrine which denies this doctrine which denies this doctrine which denies the gospel"! I'm hoping that some of you see this! Universal atonement DENIES that Christ's blood actually ATONED!
This is no secondary or tertiary doctrine! This is the doctrine around which the Bible centers! It is the doctrine around which the UNIVERSE centers! Do any of you see this? Do any of you see the work of Christ as being of primary importance? Jesus Christ suffered the unmitigated wrath of God in the stead of His people, fully satisfying God's justice, fully paying for the sins of His people. It is the glorious doctrine that is at the center of Christianity!! If there is no gospel atonement, there is no Christianity!!
It's GOSPEL ATONEMENT versus any other kind of atonement. And if one does not believe GOSPEL ATONEMENT, one is unregenerate.
This is prompting me to write an article entitled "Gospel Atonement." I thank God that He has used this discussion to give me this idea for an article. Look for it in an upcoming issue of Outside the Camp, the Lord willing.
To God alone be the glory,
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