validity. Delivery is not complete without acceptance. It cannot be forced upon him. In that respect it is like a deed. The delivery may be in person to the offender or to his agent and its acceptance may be proved by circumstances like any other fact.?
(j) If the atonement requires faith as its complement, then it does not in itself furnish a complete satisfaction to God?s justice. We answer that faith is not the ground of our acceptance with God, as the atonement is, and so is not a work at all; faith is only the medium of appropriation. We are saved not by faith, or on account of faith, but only through faith. It is not faith but the atonement which faith accepts that satisfies the justice of God.
Illustrate by the amnesty granted to a city, upon conditions to be accepted by each inhabitant. The acceptance is not the ground upon which the amnesty is granted; it is the medium through which the benefits of the amnesty are enjoyed. With regard to the difficulties connected with the atonement, we may say with Bishop Butler in conclusion: ?If the Scripture has, as surely it has, left this matter of the satisfaction of Christ mysterious, left somewhat in it unrevealed, all conjectures about it must be, if not evidently absurd, yet at least uncertain. Nor has any one reason to complain for want of further information, unless he can show his claim to it.? While we cannot say with President Stearns: ?Christ?s work removed the hindrances in the eternal justice of the universe to the pardon of the sinner, but how we cannot tell.? We cannot say this, because we believe the main outlines of the plan of salvation to be revealed in Scripture ? yet we grant that many questions remain unsolved. But, as bread nourishes even those who know nothing of its chemical constituents or of the method of its digestion and assimilation, so the atonement of Christ saves those who accept it, even though they do not know how it saves them. Balfour, Foundations of Belief, 264-267 ? ?Heat was once thought to be a form of matter now it is regarded as a mode of motion. We can get the good of it, whichever theory we adopt, or even if we have no theory. So we may get the good of reconciliation with God, even though we differ as to our theory of the Atonement.? ? ?One of the Roman Emperors commanded his fleet to bring from Alexandria sand for the arena although his people at Rome were visited with famine. But a certain shipmaster declared that, whatever the emperor commanded, his ship should bring wheat. So, whatever sand others may bring to starving human souls, let us bring to them the wheat of the gospel ? the substitutive atonement of Jesus Christ.? For answers to objections, see Philippi, Glaubenslehre, iv, 2:156-180; Crawford, Atonement, 384-468; Hodge, Systematic Theology, 2:526-543; Baird, Elohim Revealed, 623
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