“And He [that same Jesus Himself] is the propitiation (the atoning sacrifice) for our sins, and not for ours alone but also for [the sins of] the whole world.” - 1 John 2:2 (AB) Could there be a more profound and all encompassing thought than this?
Jesus Christ died and paid for the sin of ALL the world!
This verse seems to be out of context with the structure of 1 John 2. It seems to clash with other scriptures, including some of Jesus’ statements. Conversely, this verse seems to be a foundational principle for universalism - all will eventually be saved. Many times when scriptures seems to clash, it is because of a mental leap in our thinking, but the gap is too broad. Often we must first ask what does it not say.
In this case, John does not say that all will be saved. He does not say that all the world will believe, or that all the world will repent. He does not say that ALL the world will obtain eternal life. He simply says that Christ atoned for the sins of the whole world.
Those who refuse the price paid for them, who refuse to appropriate through repentance what is already there, cannot be saved. Their account with God has been settled - the prisoner waiting for the penalty of death can go free. The prison door is open wide.
Many refuse to leave.
A Holy, perfectly just God must settle all rebellion, inequity, ungodliness. God in order to be God, and because of who He is as God, must make peace with or without mankind’s acceptance of that settlement. Grace is, by Christ’s sacrifice, made available to all the world. The atonement is already there for all the world.
When Jesus came down from the Father and lived and died, the world was turned on its head. Everything in heaven and earth changed. The curtain in the temple was torn into from top to bottom. The wall of separation between Jew and Gentile, between races, between the earth and heaven has been broken down. Jesus has reconciled the whole world to God.
The Apostle Paul affirmed that he, among others, had been given the “ministry of reconciliation”, and affirmed that God had now reconciled the whole world to Himself. However, not all of the world will claim their release. God’s word is the story about those who do, and also those who do not.
Regardless, God is vindicated. All accounts between God and His creation were settled that day when Jesus cried out “it is finished”.
Perfect justice. Perfect love.
There is a time element for all who will, to claim there release. A time called a “Grace period”. The account books are still open - one is called the “book of life”.
Is you name written there yet?
There is still time...
“I [also] saw the dead, great and small; they stood before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is [the Book] of Life. And the dead were judged (sentenced) by what they had done their whole way of feeling and acting, their aims and endeavors] in accordance with what was recorded in the books.” - Revelation 20:12 (AB)
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