Sermon of the week: “Grace secured – Limited Atonement” by Brian Borgman.

Brian Borgman If you struggle with the doctrine of Limited Atonement, I have just the sermon for you. I am confident that after listening to Grace secured – Limited Atonement, you will now be able to confidently place an “L” smack dab in the middle of your T.U.L.I.P.

Brian Borgman does a fabulous job in demonstrating from Scripture that Christ died for His elect, and not for everyone (e.g. those who reject Him).

You may want to have a pen and paper handy to jot down the copious Scriptural references that Borgman provides (and feel free to share them with DefCon readers in the comments section).

This is part nine of Borgman’s thirteen-part series on the Doctrines of Grace entitled Introduction to the Reformed Faith. Look for the each additional installment every couple weeks.

26 thoughts on “Sermon of the week: “Grace secured – Limited Atonement” by Brian Borgman.

  1. So even though Jesus asked His Father to forgive those who nailed Him to the cross, He wasn’t really dying for them? So far as we know they were never saved, but His offer of salvation was for them, too. I have to respectfully disagree with the “limited atonement” idea. The Bible says that all who call on the Name of the Lord shall be saved.


  2. Thanks for your comment Laura. I encourage you to download and listen to this message before completely rejecting it. I am confident that, at the very least, it will give you many things to think about; things you may have never realized before.

    I believe that God is sovereign and I did not really struggle with Limited Atonement (I have a harder time with the P in the TUILP), but after listening to this message I became much more confident that God is sovereign over His creation, including who He calls:

    And these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified. – Romans 8:30

    Perhaps after listening to the sermon you can provide more commentary with a different perspective on the issue.


    – The Pilgrim


  3. Pilgrim, thank you for explaining your point. I would love to listen to the sermon. Forgive me if I sounded offensive or rude.


  4. No, Laura, I never took it that way. I just wanted to exhort you to listen to the sermon before making up your mind. That’s all.


    – Pilgrim

    Man’s steps are ordained by the Lord, how can man understand his way? – Proverbs 20:24


  5. OK. I heartily embrace all the Solas and al 5 points. Borgman’s message on this one, the big L, is wonderful, glorious in its focus on Christ as God – sovereign and sufficient. A gentle approach, not condemning those who fail to understand this issue the same way; humble before man and God. This prompted me to download this whole series to-date.

    How wonderful is the love of God!


  6. Manfred,

    This is a great thirteen part series on the Doctrines of Grace. I began posting the series back in October and it’s scheduled to be completed in March.

    I am learning tremendous amounts from this series and expect that others out there will also.

    I believe you will not regret downloading them all. The next one (Part 10) is scheduled for two weeks from now.

    To make downloading the series easier you can find all the previous installments by clicking here.

    – Pilgrim

    P.S. If you can’t wait for the remaining installments, you can cheat and download the entire series here.


  7. Pilgrim,

    Many thanks! I must confess, I searched your site for Borgman and downloaded quite a few already πŸ™‚ This guy not only presents the biblical case well, he is easy for me to listen to, he is well organized, well supported by Scripture, and not at all arrogant.


  8. I have to disagree with limited atonement. I have to agree with Laura. The bible says that Christ tells us that whoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. Christ also said that He came to saved those which were lost. The bible also says in Christ’s word, and I am paraphrasing, that as the sick need a doctor and not the people that are well so the sinner needs God not the saved.


  9. Not long ago and I would have said what is limited atonement! I had never heard anything like that preached. While reading Scripture I have come across passages that have caused me to dig deeper. I did have a problem with it, though maybe that was because I haven’t been able to understand it. This sermon is opening this subject up, and making it easier for me. I will download and listen again.


  10. Dear J.R.

    I encourage you (as I did Laura) to download and listen to the sermon. I believe Borgman makes a very strong case from Scripture for this doctrine. If you still disagree after hearing the message, then at least you will better understand the other side of the argument.


    – Pilgrim


  11. I have found that discussing limited atonement tends to make people very angry. So does election.

    One guy I talk with about it always tells me to not listen to what other people say about the subject. I don’t think he hears when I say that I used to believe the same way he does.

    After careful study I could not reject the doctrines of grace. They “make sense”.


  12. J.R. and Laura – one thought to consider – how can a dead person call for anyone?

    On another note, I am really enjoying this site and have passed on several blogs to others.

    This particular topic will go to those who are struggling with this issue.




  13. ‘Tis true that whosoever calls upon the name of Christ will be saved. But the precursor Truth to that is that no man can come to the Father unless he be called to new life.

    As Jireh8 stated, spiritually dead cannot only NOT call upon Christ, they cannot even want to. In his natural state, man only wants sin – even when he thinks he wants something good. Such is the sinful nature of natural man.


  14. Imagine I’m the only person on earth, and I’m not one of the elect. So what would Jesus do. Limited atonement demands he would say “Sorry, you can never become a Christian, and so I don’t have to die for you. Goodbye”.

    Is the Jesus I read of in the Bible, who loved the world, not just the elect?


  15. David S,

    Hypotheticals are problematic. If we deal with the Scriptures, it’s clear to all who humbly seek Truth and have it revealed by God.

    Creator God loves all humans – who are all made in His image, tarnished as we are by the fall – and provides rain and food, etc. for all. He has a special love for the Elect, as shown throughout Scripture, whom He calls without regard to their merit – a people for Himself to bring glory to His name.

    All who are not elect will face the same fate – on Judgment Day, they will be cast into hell as their names are not writ in the Lamb’s Book of Life. This is what ALL people deserve, as there are none good, none who seek after God. Check out the first video on this page to get a biblical perspective on this.


  16. @ Manfred:

    In your final paragraph you reveal the fundamental problem with Calvinism – namely that God will send some people to hell because He has created them for that purpose. The U of TULIP, unconditional election, has two sides – the other being unconditional non-election – but Calvinists rarely talk about the latter. It says that God creates people who have no hope of salvation and are predestined to walk the world and sin through no fault of their own, but are unable to become christians and are condemned to hell. And frequently hell is defined as everlasting conscious torment. What does that make God? And how is that compatible with a God of justice? Where is the justice in eternally punishing people for something that they have no control over?

    The gospel is a message of hope for the world, not for the elect. The sooner Calvinism is consigned to the list of heresies that the church has rejected, the better.


  17. Mark Kielar is another Pastor who has covered the doctrine of Limited Atonement… presented clearly and concisely:

    He’s Not Willing That ANY Should Perish. ANY of WHOM?:

    How Do I Know If I’m One of God’s Elect?:

    So Does Scripture Say Anything About Calvinism?:

    The Comforting Doctrine of God’s Unconditional Election:

    Does God Predestine Some Men to Hell? (Double Predestination Explained Rightly):

    Believer, You’re Saved Because God Chose You First Not Because You Chose Him First:

    To the Praise of the Glory of My ‘Free’ Will? (1of3):

    To the Praise of the Glory of My ‘Free’ Will? (2of3):

    To the Praise of the Glory of My ‘Free’ Will? (3of3):

    No One Can Come to Jesus Christ, Unless…:

    If God Has Predestined Men Unto Salvation, Why Evangelize?:

    Does John 3:16 Refute Calvinism? (1of3):

    Does John 3:16 Refute Calvinism? (2of3):

    Does John 3:16 Refute Calvinism? (3of3):

    Arminians/Semi-Pelagians Teach and Believe in Limited Atonement:


  18. “And how is that compatible with a God of justice?”

    God is just. He would have been just to end the human race with Adam and Eve. If you understand God’s holiness and mans sinfulness the question would be is “why does God save anyone?”

    David go here and go through the Scriptures listed.

    Rom9:14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid.
    Rom9:15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.
    Rom9:16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.
    Rom9:17 For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth.
    Rom9:18 Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.
    Rom9:19 Thou wilt say then unto me, Why doth he yet find fault? For who hath resisted his will?
    Rom9:20 Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?
    Rom9:21 Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?
    Rom9:22 What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction:
    Rom9:23 And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory,


  19. David S,

    In your final paragraph you reveal the fundamental problem with Calvinism – namely that God will send some people to hell because He has created them for that purpose. The U of TULIP, unconditional election, has two sides – the other being unconditional non-election – but Calvinists rarely talk about the latter.

    See Mark Kielar’s video, “Does God Predestine Some Men to Hell? (Double Predestination Explained Rightly)”, in my previous post!

    He tackles your concern head-on, and does so Scripturally.

    In Christ Jesus,
    – Jeff H


  20. Thank you so much for posting this. I have been Reformed for quite a few years now and have never heard such a brilliant explanation of Limited Atonement as this. My hand is aching from writing notes and flipping the pages of my Bible so I could follow the Scriptures.

    I honestly cannot see how anyone could listen to this entire sermon and still argue for a universal atonement. Is it because some people prefer to defend their theology at the expense of Biblical truth? I too once believed in a universal atonement so I understand the arguments and defences. However, they’re unbiblical.


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