On atonement theories and the nature of God

Here is an interesting post. I sort of understand the complaint that Mel and Insanitybytes22 have with the theory of Penal Substitutionary Atonement, but I doubt there is a better “theory.” All we have are theories. That’s why this is one of those arguments that leaves me scratching my head. If any of us knows exactly what happened when Jesus died on that cross, none of us knows how to explain it well.

That said, I appreciate the fact Mel explained his own view. It helps to understand Insanitybytes22’s gripe.

For what it is worth what do I think? What the Bible is clear about is that God hates sin. When Adam and Eve disobeyed God, they sinned, and they bequeathed to us the consequences of that sin.

What did God do? He promised a Redeemer. As it happens, the Jews had almost no idea how this Redeemer, this Messiah, would fulfill His mission.

What do we know after the fact? Jesus, who is One with the Father, suffered and died for us. Was it to pay the price for our sins, or because God allowed the most vile of demons (one of His creations) to steal two naive souls from Paradise? In the first case we can make God appear hateful. In the second we can make Him seem like a clumsy all-powerful klutz.

So what is the answer? Who crucified Jesus? Acts 2 records that the Apostle Peter told the Jews that they had killed Him. The Gospels make it clear that Gentiles put Jesus on that cross too.

Fulfilling the wishes of the Father Jesus laid down His life for us. He allowed sinful people engaged in the most heinous sin to cruelly murder Him. His sacrifice somehow makes those who repent and believe in Jesus acceptable to God. Why? We don’t know. We also don’t know why the sin of Adam and Eve condemned all their progeny, including us, to death. Is it not the wisdom of God, not the wisdom of man, that brings salvation (see 1 Corinthians 1:18-31). Which of us can understand the Mind of God?

Should we try to understand this mystery? Yes. Should we emphasize the fact that Jesus Christ’s death on the cross was an act of love? Yes, but how do we emphasize the love God has for us over His wrath against sin? We do so by remembering that while we were still sinners He died for us, that it was our sin, not the Father’s wrath, that made His death on that cross necessary for our redemption.

In My Father's House

I was in an interesting conversation over at Insanitybytes22’s blog with her post, “A Wrinkle in Time….” The subject was about the atonement. You might be surprised to hear this if you’ve only heard one version of the atonement but, historically speaking, this subject is one the most controversial topics in Christianity.

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You Can’t Win If You Never Fight

Alex writes some thoughtful stuff. Makes me think. So after writing a comment I often decide a reblog is required.

What follows is the comment I would have left.

I think you are making The Establishment out to be more virtuous than it is. Think about what it means when we call Trump an outsider. Outside of what?

What describes The Establishment? The expression Crony Capitalism works well. Now consider that in the context of your “praise” for the opposition.

-They show up.
-They make noise.
-They don’t form circular firing squads.
-They air internal debates IN PRIVATE.
-They spend money on what they believe in.
-They provide rhetorical support to their allies.
-They are united against their foes.
-And–here’s a big one–their millionaires and billionaires support art and culture. Ours support open borders, foreign wars, and corporate tax cuts.

Because of Crony Capitalism, your last bullet is the big one. The Establishment works together to protect and expand the system they have devised because it is in their economic interests to do so. It is about money, not virtue.

What should unite Conservatives? Love. Conservativism is not about “ME”. It isn’t rabid individualism for its own sake. We defend the rights to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness because we love our family, friends, and neighbors, and we want to protect them from abuse and enslavement by egomaniacal and tyrannical busybodies.

To fight The Establishment, we have learn again what the people who founded this country once knew. We have to learn how to work with our neighbors in voluntary associations. That’s not easy, but love overcomes.

Amatopia

For starters, I need to thank @OregonMuse of popular blog Ace of Spades HQ for helping creators wage the culture war by promoting my book A Traitor to Dreams, among other great independent novels, on last Sunday’s Sunday Morning Book Thread.

Not only did this signal boost result in my best day of sales yet, more importantly, it put my book, and the others, in many, many people’s hands. I can’t speak for all authors involved, but I’m not in this for the money. Any money is nice, of course, but I’m in it to change the culture. All fiction is message fiction, after all. The question is, “Whose message?” It’s been so one-sided for so long it’s about time people had an alternative.

Which brings me to today’s point: Complaining about a problem does nothing. You actually have to show up to fight.

And those of…

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WHY DOES MEXICO CONTROL IMMIGRATION ACROSS OUR SOUTHERN BORDER?

Here is a topic I have considered writing about. However, someone beat me to it.

Prince William-Manassas Family Alliance

BEFORE

AFTER
The El Centro Sector built approximately two miles of 30′ steel bollard wall west of the Calexico West Port of Entry. The contract was awarded in November 2017, construction started in February 2018 and was completed in October 2018. (from here (dhs.gov))

This article, Massive caravan on ‘illegal immigration superhighway’ to press strained border resources (washingtontimes.com, 31 Mar), ought to make any American cringe. Consider this excerpt.

U.S. officials said Mr. Trump’s frustration has flared after the Mexican government of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador took office in December.

Mr. Lopez Obrador, eager to create a break with his predecessor, began a humanitarian policy that welcomed Central Americans and provided them with humanitarian assistance and visas, which gave them tacit permission to traverse the country.

That, American officials say, created the spike that is playing out on the U.S. border, where the number of unauthorized migrants arrested rose from about…

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