Thursday, April 13, 2006

A Defense of the Atonement

Much of the modern church (how it pains me to use that term for these folks) finds offensive the substitutionary atonement of Christ, along with so much historically orthodox biblical teaching. This defense is worth a read.

One of the closing paragraphs:
We must center our lives around Christ's Atonement. We don't want to encourage violence, marginalize the gospel, or promote individualistic passivity. But I haven't seen sinners who are gripped by Christ's substitutionary death respond that way. Instead, I've more often observed responses like C. T. Studd's famous statement: "If Jesus Christ be God, and died for me, then no sacrifice can be too great for me to make for him." Charles Spurgeon put that point well: "It is our duty and our privilege to exhaust our lives for Jesus. We are not to be living specimens of men in fine preservation, but living sacrifices, whose lot is to be consumed."

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

"individualistic passivity"... Interesting topic I would be interested to hear more on.

Undercover Youth Pastor said...

Define "modern church".

I see that as the mindset of the "modern, post-modern, emergent, whatever you call it" church personally.

Much of that same church believe in a Universalist view of salvation too, so who really needs "atonement"???

Alan Crouch said...

Undercover youth pastor, why paint with such a broad brush?

Ben said...

UYP,

By "modern church" I simply mean that which claims to be the Christian church today. I think the group you describe is the "much of the modern church" that finds the atonement offensive, in my post.

But then why would we be surprised that they would reject it? Didn't Paul write that the cross is an offense to the Jews? Woudn't it be reasonable to compare 1st century Jews with today's religious people who deny the gospel?