Are There Sins God Cannot Forgive?

According to the tenets of Calvinism, Jesus died on the cross to pay the penalty for the sins of all who would believe. He did not die for the sins of the unregenerate who would not believe. Since the Bible states that God is omniscient, He must know all things. One must conclude that God knew when He created the world who would and who would not ultimately be saved. Given the certainty of this statement, the question concerning the forgiveness of sin is this: is it God who determines whose sins will be forgiven or is God’s forgiveness determined by free choices made by sinful men? God’s sovereignty limits that discussion to the former. God is sovereign in all things including salvation and so He and He alone determines who is and is not saved and as a result, only those whose sins will be forgiven are placed on the cross and those sins and those alone are atoned for and those are the only sins God can forgive.

Some will try to say that Jesus died for the sins of all men everywhere but that the benefits of the atonement are only available for those for whom God intended them to be effectual. John Hendryx, founder of Monergism.com says that this is completely inconsistent with the tenets of Calvinism and to “to reject limited atonement is to reject total depravity and unconditional election. The four-point Calvinists, therefore, do not really believe in election, but rather, that the natural man still has the moral ability to turn to God on his own without regenerating grace (as if faith was somehow a contribution on our part). Therefore, it is impossible to be a four-point Calvinist and remain consistent.”

Notice another comment from Hendryx: “The value of Christ’s atonement is obviously enough to save 10,000 times 10,000 so the question is not its sufficiency but, rather, God’s intent. The following passage explicitly shows that Jesus understands the Father’s intent:

“This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day.”
John 6:39

Jesus shows His intent here is to save all that the Father has given Him, those He has set his affection on from eternity, and no others.” (http://www.monergism.com/thethreshold/articles/onsite/four-point.html)

Where does John 6:39 make any substantive statement concerning God;s intent where the Atonement is concerned or the specificity of Jesus dying for the sins of a select few? It does not! Jesus is simply saying that He will raise up those the Father has given Him on the last day. What is clear is the meaning of verse 40: “And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.” Jesus said in verse 35: “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.” It can certainly be argued that those the Father has given to the Son are those who believe.

The question is, is it God who caused them to believe or is it the Light that Jesus has brought in to a dark world that convicts men and leads them to repent and believe? Is it the gospel that is proclaimed to a sinful world that the Holy Spirit uses to bring people to their knees in repentance and faith that results in their conversion? Is it the numerous number of testimonies of countless millions who have surrendered their hearts to the Lord and continue to live faithful lives so that allow people to see Jesus at work in their hearts and lives that the Holy Spirit uses to bring people to repentance and faith in Jesus Christ so that in believing in Him people might be saved and will never hunger or thirst again!

Hear the conclusion to this matter. Simply put, according to the tenets of Calvinism, there are sins that God cannot forgive. Calvinism contends only the sins of the elect were atoned for on the cross. The Bible says, “And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission.” (Heb 9:22 NKJV) If the sin of the unregenerate were not placed on the cross, God cannot forgive that sin. It is not that He will not do so; scripturally speaking, He cannot do so.

Looks like the Calvinist may have a problem with its concept of the sovereignty of God after all.

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14 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Buckethead Baptist on February 18, 2013 at 7:23 am

    This is an incredibly vapid rant speaking for one branch of modern day Pharisaism… against the other.

    This is what happens when you’ve BOTH built your doctrine around the struggle against sin… INSTEAD of where it belongs.

    Quick… name me ONE other “religion” on the face of the planet that spends it adherent’s time and energy so uselessly against their own personal sin? If you said “Islam”… you win a prize because that is basically what you are selling… you just haven’t figured it out yet.

    Here’s my proof:

    1. No mention of the TRUE enemy we all have, so you sideline us with the struggle with sin. You’re not interested in the murderer of all humanity… just his effect.

    2. Take a scan through the rest of your writings Bob… Find how many times you even have a MENTION of an enemy force that is NOT looking out for us. I’m not going to waste my time doing it… because I guarantee it’s pathetic.

    3. Look at (y)our Convention’s statistics on Youth… If 75% leave…and less than half ever come back, have you EVER considered that MAYBE they figured out they were being sold a bill of goods?

    4. Look at the statistics on PASTOR’S KIDS that leave and NEVER come back… if that isn’t a “WAKE THE HELL UP!!!” call to the Evangelical church and it’s Pastors… then I do not know what is.

    5. The New Testament only has ONE model for professional religionists who spend as much time talking about personal sin struggle as modern day Evang. Pastors… and Jesus didn’t have many kind things to say about them.

    6. You’ve FORGOTTEN the proverbial “seed” plot of the entire bible centers around a declaration of War by the Deity of the Universe upon the Interloper into the Garden who murdered his children… and drew the sides clearly into “My Family” vs. “Your Family”.

    The modern American Evangelical church has been replaced with… Islam.

    Reply

    • OK… So let me see if I am following you correctly… instead of talking about the effects of sin, the focus needs to be on the devil himself, the “Deity of the universe” right?

      Since I am concerned with the solution to the problem which is what Jesus did for us on the cross I am not sure I see the significance you are addressing. I agree that there are tremendous problems and if modern theology is on the wrong road then perhaps that is part of the problem in correcting the problem. I maintain that this is the case where total depravity and inability are concerned.

      One other thought that I have with your daunting statistics that are tragically accurate is this: when our nation began its move away from “in God we trust” and our government began moving away from the Judeao-Christian principles that is was founded upon, THEN the moral fiber of our nation has eroded and what you are citing is the tragic result… Christians and churches share in the responsibility for allowing that to take place but the problem is more pandemic than a simple distinction of speaking about sin versus the devil.

      Perhaps I am wrong but that is why I am not the Buckethead here.

      ><>”

      What do YOU see as the proper solution in a little more detail that you hinted to here?

      Reply

      • Posted by Buckethead Baptist on February 20, 2013 at 11:31 am

        Ok… solution. (thankfully since I screwed up my previous post… I had a little more time to get some clarity).

        First… I’ve come to the realization that this “Total Depravity” Doctrine… is Bovine Scatology. Or at the very least… the way the Evangelical & Southern Baptist church uses it is.

        Yes … I realize I’m standing down several hundreds of years of accepted Doctrine on this matter… and countless theologians who’ve subscribed to it…

        And… I’m absolutely 100 % positive that it’s a Doctrine of a Demon…. because I know the scripture that has been used to support it… BETTER than those Theologians. It’s a lie.

        I’ve got conclusive proof that Stetzer and Wax CHANGED SCRIPTURE in one of their primary lessons in the “Not The Gospel Project” curriculum… because they WANTED to PROVE Total Depravity with a passage from Ephesians… but to do it… they changed the wording. 100% Provable fact. To prove it in their Children’s and students books… they also edited the lesson scripture for purposes of espousing Total Depravity.

        Lifeway’s Heavy Promotion of the HCSB bible… is Heavily Edited and commented on to promote a particular view in one particular chapter…. that is provably false… because it promotes Total Depravity… and ONLY Total Depravity.

        If you think I’m lying… then tell me why the American Evangelical church is still Segregated by race. Why? The Doctrine of Total Depravity and our still Segregated church… is linked by the same scripture…. at least by those who’ve abused it.

        So what’s the solution?

        If you can answer these two questions… you’ll have your answer.

        1. Tell me where this conversation took place:

        Matthew 16:18
        “And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”

        2. And According to 1 Peter 3… why do we Baptize?

      • Buckethead,

        You wrote, “First… I’ve come to the realization that this “Total Depravity” Doctrine… is Bovine Scatology. Or at the very least… the way the Evangelical & Southern Baptist church uses it is.

        Yes … I realize I’m standing down several hundreds of years of accepted Doctrine on this matter… and countless theologians who’ve subscribed to it…”

        I am not sure HOW much you have read that I have written, but if you understood any of it, you would know that I am not even a 1 pt calvinist and I do not believe the Bible supports a total depravity/inability position as the majority of those educated by theologians sseem to support. Most people in the pew do not have a clue what total depravity means and if you try to explain it to them they will give you this deer in the headlights look as if you are nuts… Most Baptist that is… never really talked to many Presbyterians… but even a lot of folk who think they are calvinist have no real clue of the full implications the theology presents.

        So, contrary to what you may thought, we are in actual agreement where TD/TI is concerned.

        ><>”

  2. Posted by wingedfooted1 on February 18, 2013 at 8:58 am

    Blessings, Bob.

    Here’s one that cracks me up.

    “If Jesus died for all our sins, this includes the sin of unbelief.” – John Hendryx

    “First of all, if the atonement was truly unlimited, then every person would be saved as all of their sins, including the sin of unbelief, would have been paid for by Christ on the cross.” – GotQuestions.org (from those at this site who hold to limited atonement)

    “And when you believe as you ought to believe, you will discover that your belief — like all other spiritual blessings — was purchased by the death of Christ. The sin of unbelief was covered by the blood in your case, and therefore the power of God’s mercy was released through the cross to subdue your rebellion and bring you to the Son. You did not make the cross effective in your life by faith. The cross became effective in your life by purchasing your faith.” – John Piper

    I am not amazed Piper said that. I am amazed Piper got away with saying that.

    Romans 3:25…….
    “God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood.”

    Acts 19:43…
    “To Him all the prophets witness that, through His name, whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins.”

    Hebrews 4:2…..
    “For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it.”

    Because they refused to believe, the gospel didn’t profit or benefit them. The gospel of the cross was ineffective for them due to their lack of faith. In other words, without exercising our faith there are no atoning benefits. None. Calvinism would have us believe that at least one of the atoning benefits of the cross (in this case for the sin of unbelief) is applied to UNBELIEVERS thus making them believers. So according to calvinism, for at least some lucky people, the gospel is very profitable when not mixed with faith. This is a complete denial of Romans 3:25, Acts19:43, and Hebrews 4:2 which clearly shows that it is thru faith that our sins are atoned for by the cross of Christ. Without faith the gospel of the cross is completely unprofitable.

    So according to folks like Hendryx and Piper, there are a few select people for whom Jesus atoned the sin of unbelief so that these lucky few can then believe and have their sins atoned for.

    Wait…..what?????

    Reply

    • One thing to also remember is that the discussion of “Because they refused to believe, the gospel didn’t profit or benefit them” was to “them”. Who is the “them”?

      The “them” were those under the law of Moses, and not anyone else. The law of Moses is not of faith, but of deeds of the flesh (works of righteousness), and no man shall be justified by what he or she does (obeying the law of Moses).

      The gospel didn’t profit them because they tried, and failed, to live up to the standards of the law to obtain righteousness, and it cannot be done. Faith played no part in works of righteousness.

      Romans 3:21
      But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;

      Galatians 2:21
      I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.

      Galatians 3:21
      for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law.

      The Law of Moses does not bring life, but it brings death.

      “Them” are those under the law of Moses”.

      Reply

      • Posted by wingedfooted1 on February 19, 2013 at 10:04 am

        Romans 2:14-15….
        “…for when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do the things in the law, these, although not having the law, are a law to themselves, who show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and between themselves their thoughts accusing or else excusing them.”

        The law (of Moses) that killed the Jews is the same law that killed you and me (for all have sinned). The difference between us (believers) and them (unbelievers) is we are no longer under law, but grace.

      • Posted by Buckethead Baptist on February 19, 2013 at 11:08 am

        Chapmaned24,

        In a non published reply to Bob’s earlier query to me… I tried to spell out the same point you just made.

        Thanks for doing it better …

        I just don’t understand how the Pastors of this nation think that calling the Lost and Pagan parts of our culture … to adhere to the law that We ourselves couldn’t follow, is practical … or even sane.

        And we KEEP DOING IT.

        What’s that definition of insanity again?

      • Buckethead…

        I did not get a response… so it did not go unpublished… in fact, your comments will automatically post… they do not go into moderation since you are already approved to post on this article.

        So….. something happened somewhere but not on my end.

        I am not sure how your criticism applies to my article here or ANYTHING that I have written, “I just don’t understand how the Pastors of this nation think that calling the Lost and Pagan parts of our culture … to adhere to the law that We ourselves couldn’t follow, is practical … or even sane.”

        ><>”

  3. However, Abraham was not under the law either. He was also under grace. Romans Chapter 4.

    Abraham was dead “to” sin, and those under the law of Moses are dead “in” sin.

    Christians are just like Abraham, and we are dead “to” sin.

    Romans Chapter 7 discusses when Paul died a spiritual death. He died when he got knowledge. He wasn’t born spiritually dead, he was alive before he knew, died when he knew.

    Calvinists are quick to mention Romans 5:12, but either omit, or don’t finish the sentence of the following verse, which states, Before the law (OF MOSES), sin was in the world, but sin is NOT IMPUTED where there is no law.

    Calvinists do not mention “but sin is not imputed where there is no law”.

    That means that although the people in Romans 2:14-15 sins, they sin in ignorance, and therefore and not judged by the law of Moses, but by the law of their conscience.

    1 John 3:4 states that sin is the transgression of the law. However, Romans 3:20 states that the law is the KNOWLEDGE of sin.

    So, sin is the transgression of the knowledge of sin.

    No knowledge, no imputing, even if they sin, because they sin in ignorance of the law of Moses.

    Why did God have to ask Adam and Eve the following question:

    Who told you that you were naked?

    Ignorance.

    They didn’t KNOW until they ate of the tree called, WHAT was the name of that tree?

    Now, look at Deuteronomy 1:39, and I say again, WHAT was the name of that tree?

    Sin is not imputed on the ignorant, even when they sin. It is only imputed where there is knowledge of the sin.

    Obedience:

    1. Already saved is to be obedient to faith
    2. Those under the law of Moses are to be obedient to the Law of Moses
    3. Those in ignorance are to be obedient to their conscience.

    Reply

  4. Posted by james jordan on July 14, 2013 at 1:30 am

    Calvinism is a sin God will not forgive. Denying that God has given us freewill = instant damnation.

    Reply

  5. Posted by Jovenal Ancheta Agua on August 8, 2013 at 4:55 am

    Mabuhay po kayo kapatid na Bob Hadley ! Your exegetical approach on interpreting the Holy Scriptures and defending it is truly the work of a man of God.

    Reply

  6. I have a question concerning ” sin forgiveness ”
    Why is there a sin of blasphemy if your either predestined to heaven or hell?
    Jesus speaks plainly about what blasphemy is when dealing when he was accused of casting out a demon by the power of satan , that would be attributing the work of the Holy Spirit to satan.

    “Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men. “(Matthew 12:31 KJV)

    My question remains why would there be a need for a unforgivable sin if everyone is already chosen one way or another in eternity?

    Reply

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