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as we need go. Christ tasted death for everyone. There is abundance of scripture to prove that everyone will not be saved; therefore we have a clear statement that Christ died for all, but in
that is not necessarily followed by salvation.
In 2 Peter ii. 1 we read of a class of persons who deny the Lord that bought them. These evidently are lost souls; they bring in damnable heresies, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. Yet they are among the persons whom Christ“ bought.”
Take again the parable of the treasure hid in the field (Matt. xiii.), for the sake of the treasure the merchant buys the whole field. In the same chapter we read that “ the field is the world." Here we are taught that for the sake of the treasure of Christ's people He buys all the world.
How many a person has concluded that “buying" and "redeeming" are one and the same thing. It is admitted that in general the two things go together. If a person buys a thing, he takes it home to himself. But this is not always the case : many a one has bought something which he was not able to possess. In scripture the two things are certainly distinct. It may be illustrated by a person buying a lot of slaves with the view of setting them at liberty. The purchase-money is paid and proclamation is made that all may go free. But some say they are pretty comfortable, they have their plot of land, &c., and they will stay where they are.
Now it is clear that while we could say that all had been purchased, we could not say all had been redeemed; for redemption signifies an actual bringing out of one condition into another.
And this is what actually took place between Christ and the world. He bought the field ; He
purchased all mankind; He tasted death for everyone, but men preferred their state of sin, and refused to be free, and it is only the saved who are 66 redeemed.”
Redemption may be seen in the Israelites being brought out of Egypt. Though the paschal lamb had been slain and eaten, and though Egypt's firstborn had been slain in judgment, there could have been no redemption unless the people had actually been brought out.
Along with this must be noted that wherever scripture speaks of sins-actual transgressionsit is never said that Christ died for all : but “ Christ died for our sins" (1 Cor. xv. 3); “ Gave himself for our sins” (Gal. i. 4); “ To bear the sins of many” (Heb. ix. 28); and so forth, shewing clearly that a distinction is made between Christ dying for all, and Christ atoning for the sins of all.
There is, however, one passage that may seem to clash with this : it is 1 John ii. 2; “He is the
: propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only, but also for [the sins of] the whole world.” It will be noticed that the words “the sins of,” are added when the world is spoken of. So that Christ may be the propitiation for the sins of His people, and for the world, and not for their sins. But if God is propitious towards the world, it would be concerning their sins, and so, in this sense it may signify that Christ has wrought such a work that God is able to be propitious (or view with favour) the whole world concerning their sins, and thus have the gospel preached to all.
The word (ilasmus) here translated propitiation occurs only here and 1 John iv. 10; God " sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins;" and the verb occurs only in Luke xviii. 13,“ God be merci
ful to me a sinner”—God be propitious to me; and in Hebrews ii. 17, "to make reconciliation for the sins of the people”—to make propitiation for the sins of the people; do a work by reason of which God can deal in grace to all mankind concerning their sins; and in virtue of which the gospel can be preached to all, and all be besought to be reconciled to God.
This brings us to another word, reconciliation." This is changing man from his enmity towards God. The word is used in 1 Corinthians vii. 11, where man and wife have separated, they are to remain unmarried, or be reconciled. With God and man, the enmity is on man's part, so that we never read of God's being reconciled to man, but man has to be reconciled to God in order to be saved, and this can only be through the work of Christ on the cross.
Romans v. 10, declares that the believer is reconciled to God; 2 Corinthians v. 18, says, God “hath reconciled us unto himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation. Verses 19, 20, of this chapter demand our attention ; they read, “ God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech [you] by us; we pray [you] in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God." Now this passage does not
that Christ reconciled the world; He was here for that purpose, He came to save men, as He tells us, to reconcile men, but men refused it, as we know. Still, on the cross He did the work by which man can be reconciled, without God giving up any of His claims on
man. And then God sent forth His ambassadors to beseech men to be reconciled. The two words "you” ought to be omitted. The Epistle was written to those who had been reconciled (verse 18) and now God's messengers were to pray men everywhere to lay down their hatred and be "reconciled to God.” The last clause Be
reconciled to God," is the message the ambassadors were to carry to the world.
The above are all the passages where “reconcile" or “reconciliation” occur, except Romans v. 11 :
” “ By whom we have received the atonement”. which should be reconciliation :" the Roman Christians had received it. And chapter xi. 15," If the casting away of them be the reconciling of the world, what shall the receiving of them be but life from the dead ?" The fall of the Jews threw the gospel open to the whole world; as verse 12 says, the fall of them was the riches of the world.
Ephesians ii. 16, speaks of reconciling both Jews and Gentiles in one body by the cross.
And Colossians i. 20, 21, speaks of the saints having been enemies, but are now reconciled; and God would by Christ reconcile all things to Himself both on earth and in heaven, but excluding things under the earth the lost.
The word " atonement” occurs but once in the New Testament, where as named above it ought to read reconciliation. As an English word it is said to signify at-one-ment; but this would be the same as reconciliation. It is often used in the Old Testament, and would appear to refer generally to God's plan of salvation by the sacrificial death of Christ.
But this paper is already too long; our readers can pursue the subject for themselves. It involves
important questions in this day when the atonement is being denied on the one hand, and universalism is rampant on the other. It is only by a careful consideration of scripture that we can gather God's revelation concerning His plan of salvation. We need this for our own souls, and we need it as teachers of others.
NOTES ON SCRIPTURE.
MATTHEW xxvi. VERSES 1-5. Christ having finished the discourses that precede, goes on to the cross. The heads of Israel plot how they can take Him by subtlety and put Him to death. As is proved by many instances their subtlety could not have entangled Him; but His time was now come.
He said to His disciples, “After two days is the feast of the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified.
“Not on the feast day,” said the rulers, "lest there be an uproar among the people.” Here their subtlety was again at fault, for it must be on the feast day; for He was the true paschal Lamb.
Verses 6–13. But before the dreadful hour arrives, the heart of Christ must be refreshed by the woman with the box of ointment. She poured it on His head as He sat at meat. It was very costly. This raised the indignation of the disciples, who called it waste.' It could have been sold for much and given to the poor.
Our Lord corrects their mistake. She had done a good work. The poor they had always with them ; but He was going to die, and this was for His burial. Such an act should be told of her wherever the gospel would be preached.