Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Warren Wiersbe on Calvinism, Unlimited Atonement

Warren W. Wiersbe (AD 1929-2019) was a great preacher and writer.  I have often recommended his Bible book commentaries to young preachers and Sunday School teachers.  They are some of the first Bible study books you should buy.  His commentaries are available in individual volumes, or all combined in two volumes (Old and New Testaments) in The Wiersbe Bible Commentary.  Anything written by Wiersbe is worth reading.

What did Warren Wiersbe believe about Calvinism and Limited or Unlimited Atonement?  No doubt he was what some would call a Moderate Calvinist (names vary, aka Traditionalist, Non-Calvinist), but he was not a 5-point Calvinist.  Following are some of his quotes on the Atonement.  It is clear Wiersbe believed in Unlimited Atonement, or, in other words, Jesus died for the sins of the world, and anyone can be saved. 

John 1:29
“Those lambs could not take away sin, but the Lamb of God can take away sin.  Those lambs were for Israel alone, but this Lamb would shed His blood for the whole world.”  -Warren W. Wiersbe, Bible Exposition Commentary

John 3:16
“God sent His Son to die, not only for Israel, but for a whole world.” 
“He has salvation for a whole world.”  -Warren Wiersbe

2 Corinthians 5:15-17
“Because ‘all things are become new,’ we also have a new view of people around us.  We see them as sinners for whom Christ died.”  -Warren Wiersbe

1 Timothy 4
“The title ‘Saviour of all men’ does not imply that everybody will be saved (universalism), or that God saves people in spite of themselves; for Paul added ‘specially of those that believe.’  It is faith that saves one’s soul (Ephesians 2:8-10).  Since God ‘will have all men to be saved (1 Timothy 2:4), and since Christ ‘gave Himself a ransom for all’ (1 Timothy 2:6), then any lost sinner can trust Christ and be saved.  Christ is ‘the Saviour of all men,’ so nobody need despair.”  -Warren Wiersbe

2 Peter 2:1
“In what sense were these people ‘bought’ by the Lord?  While it is true that Jesus Christ died for the church (Ephesians 5:25), it is also true that He died for the sins of the whole world (1 John 2:2).  He is the merchant who purchased the whole field (the world) that He might acquire the treasure in it (Matthew 13:44).  When it comes to application, our Lord’s atonement is limited to those who believe.  But when it comes to efficacy, His death is sufficient for the whole world.  He purchased even those who reject Him and deny Him!  This makes their condemnation even greater.”  -Warren Wiersbe, The Wiersbe Bible Commentary, David C. Cook; 2007. 

-David R. Brumbelow, Gulf Coast Pastor, May 21, AD 2019. 

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