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Christman Romans 3:19-31
Now we know that whatever the law says, it speaks to those who are under the law, so that
every mouth may be silenced, and the whole world may be held accountable to God. 20For ³no human being will be justified in his sight´ by deeds prescribed by the law, for through the law comes the knowledge of sin.
But now, apart from law, the righteousness of God has been
disclosed, and is attested by the law and the prophets, 22the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction, 23since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God; 24they are now justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
whom God put forward as a sacrifice of atonement by his blood, effective
through faith. He did this to show his righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over the sins previously committed; 26it was to prove at the present time that he himself is righteous and that he justifies the one who has faith in Jesus. 27Then what becomes of boasting? It is excluded. By what law? By that of works? No, but by the law of faith. 28For we hold that a person is justified by faith apart from works prescribed by the law. 29Or is God the God of Jews only? Is he not the God of Gentiles also? Yes, of Gentiles also,
since God is one; and he will
justify the circumcised on the ground of faith and the uncircumcised through that same faith.
may sit there unaffected. Dare I say that word or any form of it ± sin. If we are afraid to preach on sin it is because we ± I say ³we´ because I know preachers can mess this up too . Minneapolis. my God why have you forsaken me?´ Did God give him up to die? What was the point? And if there was a point. Christman Jesus the Savior June 6.´ But follow that up with ³Why?´ and if you don¶t get a blank stare. ³Maybe you have heard atonement defined as ³at-one-ment´. And preaching on sin always comes with a certain level of risk. sinner. confident I am talking about ³the other guy´ ± you know . Ask any questions beyond that and the conversation just gets ugly ± or I think the term today is sketchy.´1 That works: Jesus died on the cross to become ³one´ with humankind. ³Jesus died for our sins´.. Others. or would that be considered ± uh ± sinful? Any way you slice it ³sin´ is not a pretty word. to restore the broken relationship between a sinful humankind and God. Augsburg Books. 2010 Did It Work? Sin. They have been beat up enough from the pulpit. What really happened that day defies all human explanation? But we still want to make sense of it? But how do we make sense of the man we have come to know as Savior.those sinners. did it work? The theological term for Jesus¶ work on the Cross is atonement.Nancy L.. the answer is. God only knows what kind of response it will evoke from the pew. In hearing the words of sin. p.from the pulpit these days. How Jesus does this though is the topic of long-standing debate. But most likely but nine times out of ten. Some may slump in defeat ± the full weight of the sin piling onto the guilt they already know.have a distorted understanding of what happened long ago on that Friday afternoon on Golgotha. you will get a boatload of answers . .21. sinful . some may go running from the church ± never to return. still. God incarnate dying the most miserable of deaths? How do we make sense of Jesus¶ cry of desperation in recalling Psalm 22 -´My God. 2008. What was going on? Ask anyone what happened that day and they can tell you ± ³That¶s easy ± Jesus was crucified. that is through Christ¶s death and resurrection we are made ³at one´ with God. Crazy Talk A Not So-Stuffy Dictionary of Theological Terms . 1 Theologians have not settled on one specific Rolf Jacobson. Messiah.
.115. the ruler as the victor in the battle over sin and death. taking on punishment for our sins. p. Frustrated I decided to step back from my analysis and look at the atonement in the context of who I know God to be and who Paul knew God to be. the prophet as obedient ambassador. the difference being. Smyth and Helwys Publishing.doctrine to explain the significance of the Atonement. but have managed to narrow it down to several theories ± my systematic theology professor broke them down by using the threefold office of the Messiah from the Old Testament ± priest. The debates is over. Jesus being understood as an atoning sacrifice (adjective) or a divine revelation (noun). Today¶s reading from Paul in his letter to the church in Rome. exactly what was God up to ± what was God¶s purpose ± in the cross ± and it comes down to Paul¶s use of ´hilasterion´ (NRSV²sacrifice of atonement) in Romans 3:252 Scholars debate whether ³place of propitiation´ or ³means of expiation´ is the appropriate translation for ´hilasterion´ ± both big words ± propitiation implies that the sacrifice effects a change in God¶s wrath towards humans ± Jesus took upon himself. Romans: Smyth and Helwys Bible Commentary. ³23since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.God gave his son Jesus over to die as a punishment for the sins of humankind. Talbert. through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus. removed sin and averted divine wrath and expiation implies that the sacrifice effects a change in humans ± Jesus dealt with sin itself3. I bring this up because there is an ³Atonement War´ of such going on in postmodern theological circles ± namely in the emergent community. 24they are now justified by his grace as a gift. 25 whom God put forward as a sacrifice of atonement by his blood. The answer boils down to basic grammar ± is ³hilasterion´ and adjective or a noun. Charles H. prophet and ruler. 2 3 Bibleworks Romans 3:25.´ has become ³proof text´ for the advocates who adhere to the blood sacrifice or substitution theory of the atonement . Macon. Georgia 2002. Without getting into too much detail the three might be explained as: The priest as a blood sacrifice. Well after six long pages of trying to make a case one way or the other my commentary boldly proclaimed ± ³it is difficult to make a compelling case for either position´4 (Heavy sigh and a few expletives) Any attempt to find a compelling argument in other resources left me at a dead end. 110 4 Talbert. p.
It is hard for me to imagine anyone teaching this ³theory of atonement´ but then I have many friends who say it is true. 5 Jürgen Moltmann.he gave his only son´ ³In the cross and the passion of Christ faith experience a quite different love of God. Preaching on sin gives us a chance to frame sin in the context of the cross and to correct the distortions. Minneapolis. foolish. For sinners are beautiful because they are loved´5.fearing God and his wrath. And that gets me back to preaching on sin ± why we should not be afraid. It is how they were raised. I spent an afternoon recently with a retired Systematic Theology professor and after a long discussion about the Atonement I point blank asked him.The main argument against substitution atonement is against those who portray in the context of an angry God who resorts to violence and commits ³divine child abuse´ ± the Father punishing the Son. We can reframe any notion of ³For God was so angry at the world he killed his only Son´ to the understanding of how ³God so loved the world ± even the sinful. p. weak and hateful in order to make it beautiful and good and wise and righteous. It loves what is sinful. which loves what is quite different. We can¶t let people go on believing God was mad at humankind so he took it out on his son. because like Paul we preach what we know to be truth and that is Christ crucified. 214. . I don¶t deny the possibility ± when it comes to the Gospel there is always the potential for distortion and desecration. Trust me someone is preaching sin to the world and if it is not from the pulpit then most likely our people are hearing about sin outside the context of the Cross. The Crucified God. Fortress Press. especially the sinful (sic) . ³It¶s still working´ He is right. It is working. ya know. bad. ³So did it work?´ understanding my question I clarified ³Did the atonement work?´ Not Without hesitation he responded. 1994.
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