This article is part of the series on Lies People Believe About Reformed Theology.
Lie #3: Reformed Theology Teaches that God’s power is Limited
Limited Atonement. Has there been a more misleading term? Doubt it. A misunderstanding of this doctrine is one of the biggest reasons people reject the doctrines of election found within Reformed Theology.
Not to mess up the TULIP acronym, but I prefer the term used by the late R.C. Sproul: Definite Atonement.
Limited or Definite Atonement doesnot teach that Jesus’ death on the cross is limited in power, for it is sufficient to save all. Instead, it teaches that he died exclusively for his sheep, just as we find in scripture.
I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. (John 10:14-15 ESV)
The sheep he speaks of are those the Father has given to him to save. …
This article is part of a series. You can read Part 1 here.
Continuing our series on lies people believe about Reformed Theology, we now come to a very common objection to the doctrines of grace found within the Reformed faith.
Lie #2: If These Doctrines are True, God is Not Loving
How can God be loving like the Bible says if he chooses some people to be saved and not others?
We’ve arrived at one of the hardest questions surrounding God’s sovereignty over salvation. It’s a valid concern, and yet the Bible both claims that God saves some and not others and that he is the definition of love. In fact, if it weren’t for his faithful love, he would choose none to be saved.
This is hard for us as humans because we think it seems unfair. But truly, what is fair? We’ve all sinned against God millions of times and yet he saves some of us.…
Some people love it, others deeply despise it. I’ve learned over the years since embracing the doctrines held within it, that much of the rejection of Reformed Theology is rooted in misunderstandings regarding what it teaches.
My hope isn’t to convince you (Okay, maybe a little bit), but to help you better understand what your Reformed friends believe. We can disagree on this subject and still be solid Christians so long as we adhere to orthodox Christianity—that we are saved by grace through faith in Jesus alone and he will one day come back to judge the world. This will not be a thorough explanation of all the doctrines—much smarter men and women have committed to that. Furthermore, the lies we’ll be covering mostly center around “the doctrines of election,” though that is only a portion of what Reformed Theology entails.
I’ve decided to make this into a series because who wants to read a 5000-word article?…
The pain of watching the ultrasound tech search for that once-obvious baby while contractions pulsed and tears filled my eyes, was one of the most traumatic things I’ve experienced both physically and emotionally.
The anxiety caused my body to shake uncontrollably as three words slipped from my lips.
“There’s nothing there.”
Just one week prior, my baby’s heartbeat was flickering on that screen as my heart overflowed with hope and gratitude. But now, the Lord had chosen to take that life away. And I was left with an empty womb, a head full of theology and a heart still asking, “Why Lord?”
The Answers Won’t Suffice
“Why?” is a silly question for a sovereign God. At times we may ask it from a humble heart, but other times it jumps off our tongue as a demand for answers.…
I bet you’ve been in the middle before too. That frustrating point between God’s revealing of a need for change and a heart that’s struggling to get there. The part in sanctification where you feel exposed—you see your sin and you’re doing all the right, practical things to grow, but the knowledge is taking its sweet time making its way from head to heart. Maybe you’re even frustrated, like me, that you’ve not grown more by this point—that none of your efforts seem to make a difference.
“Why won’t you just change me God?!” He’s sovereign. He could say a word and make my heart feel differently. And yet, in the middle of seeing my sin and feeling my heart change is where my feet still stand.
I’ve listened to the sermons, I’ve prayed and prayed, I’ve studied applicable passages, but I still find myself at the feet of Jesus, begging for his help, asking him to free me.…