Tag Archives: Atonement

Inadequate Understanding of Love


Our understanding of God’s love is so raw since it is shaped by our culture we were born in and raised, books that we read, music that we listen to, and movies that we watch. What we understand as love is only what we are capable of ourselves doing it to others. That is utterly inadequate definition of love. Jesus Christ is the embodiment of what love really is. God is love,[1] and His love is actualized and demonstrated in the person of Jesus Christ on the Cross in Calvary. He is no less than the incarnate Son of God, preexisted with the Father, not made but begotten, the fullness of Deity lives in bodily form.[2] Without diminishing his divinity, he voluntarily took a human form to deliver the humanity from the bondage of sin by offering himself as the ultimate sacrifice.[3] For the penalty of sin is death.[4] Jesus paid the price by his own blood even when we were still sinners.[5] And that is love.


Scripture References:

[1] 1 John 4:8

[2] Colossians 2:9; Philippians 2:6-8

[3] Hebrews 10:10

[4] Romans 6:23

[5] Romans 5:8

Monday Devotion: Excerpt from The Imitation of Christ


Christ’s Sacrifice on the Cross, and Offering Ourselves

The Voice of the Beloved

Of my own freewill I offered Myself to God the Father for your sins1 – My arms were outstretched on the Cross and My body naked, so that nothing remained in Me that was not completely turned into a sacrifice to make propitiation for your sins.2

In the same way, you should offer ourself willingly to Me every day in holy communion as a pure and “living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service,”3 together with all your strength and affections, and with all the inward devotion that you can.

What more do I require of you than that you abandon yourself entirely to Me?

whatever You would give Me besides yourself is of no value to Me, for I seek you4 and not your gifts.

_____________________

Scripture Reference:

1 Isaiah 53:5, Hebrews 9:28

2 Romans 3:25; 1 John 2:2, 4:10

3 Romans 12:1

4 Proverbs 23:26

________________________

Thomas a Kempis, Imitation of Christ (North Brunswick, NJ: Bridge Logos, 1999), 263-264. Print.

Monday Devotion: Habit of Sinning


Alvin Plantinga asserts that our entire “human race has habit” of sinning. We intend to do good what seems like good to us. Yet, we fail to do well, because sin has contaminated us. For this reason, we have turned our back to God. We rebelled against him.

God hates sin, because it violates God’s law as well as trust. Sin competes with the holiness of God. He shuns sin from his people, because it hurts and betrays. It steals our eternal peace and makes our life dysfunctional. Sin creates large rift between God and human. God hates sin, as it segregates us from reconciliation with God. Once we were grave sinners who were enslaved by sin. We dishonored God and  sinned against God. Because of our rebellion, we had fallen short of God’s glory (Rom. 3:23). But when the Son of God, Jesus Christ shed his blood on the Cross and ransomed us with his blood, our habit of sinning has more than changed; it is transformed. The chains of sin were broken and stains of sin were gone. We have become new creation in Christ (2 Cor. 5:17).

Biblical Nuggets: Abailard’s “Moral Influence” View of the Atonement


Abailard rejects Anselmian “Satisfaction” view of the atonement. He finds the idea of satisfaction inexplicable and nonsensical. He believes faith must be subjective to reason and reason alone must have authority. So, he raises a number of objections to Anselmian view.

(1) How could God be reconciled with the death of his Son when murder of his Son is far greater crime than eating fruit in the garden of Eden?

(2) What standard of justice is carried out since an innocent person is killed over nothing and people are pleased? It seems cruel to demand the blood of an innocent person and wicked to please by that price.

(3) How can this satisfaction be effective?

(i)     To whom was the ransom paid – God?

(ii)   Who set the price – God?

(iii)  To who was this obligation to be discharged – God?

Abailard proposes solution to this problem by shifting emphasis away from the Death of Christ to his Life and shift away from the satisfaction of divine justice to the impact of Divine Love. And he concludes that there is no other explanation for atonement of Christ than the revelation of divine love. Therefore, there is no logic apart from love.

Biblical Nuggets: Christus Victor Model


Christus Victor Model: This model of Atonement emphasizes on dramatic victory of Christ over demons and death and law on the Cross. Christ triumphed over the forces of the darkness, Satan and released those those who are bound by the sin and power of the darkness. Thus, Christ is the Victor in the cosmic warfare.