For Whom Did Christ Die? - HIS PEOPLE
The objects of redemption are described by such words and characteristics as show them to be a special and distinct people. Particularly, those who are the objects of redemption are called, the people of God our Savior. "For the transgressions of my people", says the Lord our God, "was he stricken”, stricken by the rod of divine justice to make satisfaction for our sins and to redeem us from them.
When he was about to come and redeem us, Zacharias, the father of John the Baptist, at his birth said, "Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people". Thus he prophesied that God would redeem and save his elect by sending Christ, the dayspring from on high, as he called him. He visited his people in the flesh and redeemed them by his blood (Luke 1:68, 78). Therefore, the angel that appeared to Joseph, and instructed him to call the Son who was to be born of his wife, Mary, by the name of Jesus, gave this reason, "for he shall save his people from their sins" (Matt. 1:21).
Someone may say, “All men are the people of God.” In a sense that is true, inasmuch as they are his creatures. Yet, the Scriptures expressly tell us that they are not all his redeemed people. Those who are redeemed by Christ are redeemed "out of every people" (Rev. 5:9). The redeemed are God's covenant people; of whom he says, "They shall be my people, and I will be their God." We are his portion and his inheritance, a people near and dear unto him, a people given to Christ to be redeemed and saved by him; of whom it is said, "Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy power".
Redemption is not universal. By the precious blood of Christ atonement has been effectually accomplished and redemption has been obtained for God’s elect. Christ is not the Redeemer of all men, but of many. If the redeemed are those who are the objects of God's special love and favor, then not all men are redeemed. There are some of whom it is said, "He that made them, will not have mercy on them; and he that formed them, will show them no favour" (Isa. 27:11). To say that Christ died and made atonement, that he redeemed those people, is to declare that his death, his blood, and his redemption is the work, gift, and good favor of God!
If, as the Scriptures teach, the redeemed are the elect of God, and them only, then not all men are redeemed; for all are not chosen. "The election hath obtained it, and the rest are blinded" (Rom. 11:7). If only those are redeemed for whom Christ became a Surety, then not all men are redeemed. Christ did not engage to pay the debts of all men. If the redeemed are the people of God and Christ, then not all are redeemed. There are some on whom God writes a "Loammi", saying, "Ye are not my people; and I will not be your God" (Hos. 1:9). If the redeemed are the sheep of Christ to whom he gives eternal life, then the goats, who will go into everlasting punishment, are not redeemed. If the redeemed are the children of God and the church and spouse of Christ to whom he gives the gift of faith, then not all men are redeemed, “For all men have not faith!”