Category Archives: Universalism

The Limitless Many of the Elect: Karl Barth on Grasping the Multi-Dimensional Nature of Election

The following section taken from Karl Barth’s Church Dogmatics II/2 sets forth a layered, multi-dimensional understanding of the contentious doctrine of election. Many, if not most, of the critiques levelled against Barth’s view tend to flatten it out into two-dimensional straw man, … Continue reading

Posted in Biblical interpretation, Christology, Critiques of Karl Barth, Election, Karl Barth, Mission & evangelism, Predestination, Reformed theology, Soteriology, Universalism

Reforming Calvinism, pt. 21: Irresistible Grace (The Logic of Hell)

In this final post on reforming Calvinism’s doctrine of irresistible grace, I arrive at a burning question—perhaps the burning question—that constitutes for many the deal-breaker when it comes to an evangelical reworking of Reformed soteriology. With its emphasis on the “one-for-all” dynamic of … Continue reading

Posted in Atonement, Christology, Classic Calvinism, Doctrine of sin, Election, Evangelical Calvinism, Five points of Calvinism, Incarnation, Judgment of God, Love of God, Reformed theology, Reforming Calvinism, Sin and evil, Soteriology, T.F. Torrance, Universalism | 2 Comments

The Impossible Possibility: Karl Barth on the Paradoxical Relation between Grace and Unbelief

In talking with someone about my recent post on why a commitment to universal atonement, at least as articulated by T.F. Torrance, does not entail a corresponding commitment to universal salvation, I was reminded of how counterintuitive this seems, especially to … Continue reading

Posted in Atonement, Doctrine of sin, Evangelical Calvinism, Karl Barth, Kingdom of God, Reformed theology, Reforming Calvinism, Sin and evil, Soteriology, T.F. Torrance, Universalism, Word of God | 2 Comments

Reforming Calvinism: Why Universal Atonement Does Not Entail Universal Salvation

In a post in which I explained T.F. Torrance’s contention that the traditional Calvinist doctrine of limited atonement implies a heretical Christology, specifically that of Nestorianism. Following Torrance, I argued that a fully orthodox Christology, resting on the twofold concept … Continue reading

Posted in Atonement, Christology, Classic Calvinism, Evangelical theology, Five points of Calvinism, Incarnation, Judgment of God, Reformed theology, Reforming Calvinism, Sin and evil, Soteriology, T.F. Torrance, Universalism, Vicarious humanity of Christ | 7 Comments

No Rational Sin: T.F. Torrance on the Error of Universalism

Anyone who has read T.F. Torrance to any extent knows that he was an ardent exponent of universal atonement and of Christ-conditioned election which vicariously includes all humanity. The common objection to these doctrines is that they inevitably lead to … Continue reading

Posted in Atonement, Biblical interpretation, Doctrine of sin, Election, Predestination, Reformed theology, Soteriology, T.F. Torrance, Universalism | 1 Comment

Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Bruce McCormack on Limited Atonement vs. Universal Salvation

Typically when we encounter passages in Scripture that seem to stand in tension, we instinctively try to find a way to alleviate that tension. Nowhere is this more evident than in relation to the tension we feel between the texts … Continue reading

Posted in Apostle Paul, Atonement, Biblical interpretation, Bruce McCormack, Classic Calvinism, Confessions, Dialectical theology, Five points of Calvinism, Judgment of God, Reformed theology, Theological methodology, Universalism

T.F. Torrance’s Doctrine of Election in 250 Words

In an article dating back to 1949, T.F. Torrance succinctly described the doctrine of election in the following way: Election means nothing more and nothing less than the complete action of God’s eternal love, that “God so loved the world … Continue reading

Posted in Biblical interpretation, Christology, Election, Evangelical Calvinism, Gospel, Love of God, Predestination, Reformed theology, Revelation, Scripture, Soteriology, T.F. Torrance, Universalism | 2 Comments

“To Be or Not To Be (Natures or Persons)?”: Vanhoozer’s Question to Evangelical Calvinism, pt. 2

In my recent post “‘To Be or Not To Be (In Christ)’?: That is Kevin Vanhoozer’s Question to Evangelical Calvinism“, I offered an initial response to Vanhoozer’s critique of Evangelical Calvinism in his essay entitled “The Origin of Paul’s Soteriology: Election, Incarnation, … Continue reading

Posted in Anthropology, Biblical interpretation, Bobby Grow, Christology, Classic Calvinism, Creeds, Doctrine of God, Election, Evangelical Calvinism, Heresy/Heterodoxy, Holy Spirit, Homoousion, John Calvin, Karl Barth, Kevin Vanhoozer, Orthodoxy, Patristic theology, Predestination, Reformed theology, Scripture, Soteriology, T.F. Torrance, Trinity, Union with Christ, Universalism, Vicarious humanity of Christ

The Evangelical Calvin: Atonement Edition

In this post, I would simply like to offer a selection of quotations from John Calvin on what Christ accomplished in the atonement and its implications for the world. I do not want to offer any comments or reflections but … Continue reading

Posted in Atonement, Biblical interpretation, Calvinism vs. Arminianism, Classic Calvinism, Evangelical Calvinism, Evangelical theology, Five points of Calvinism, Gospel, John Calvin, Protestant theology, Reformation, Reformed theology, Soteriology, Universalism | 2 Comments

Reforming Calvinism, pt. 14: Limited Atonement (Union with Christ)

In the last few entries in my series on Reforming Calvinism, I have been delineating an Evangelical Calvinist revision of the doctrine of ‘limited atonement’ that, in my opinion, preserves the best insights but eradicates the problematic aspects of the traditional view. … Continue reading

Posted in Atonement, Christology, Classic Calvinism, Evangelical Calvinism, Five points of Calvinism, Homoousion, John Calvin, Myk Habets, Reformed theology, Reforming Calvinism, Soteriology, T.F. Torrance, Union with Christ, Universalism, Vicarious humanity of Christ | 3 Comments