Thursday, May 08, 2014

Why did he come?

Of course this [the theory of penal substitution] creates a very strange impression theologically. It pits the Father against the Son and construes forgiveness as something God finds difficult to give. It makes grace conditional upon penal satisfaction and gives the impression that the Father actually hates sinners and cannot love them until his wrath is appeased. It belies the central point that it ws the Father who took the initiative in reconciling the world through Christ...

God was not disinclined to be favorable until his wrath was appeased. He is not humanity’s enemy; it was love that moved him to send his Son in the first place. Love provided the incarnation and the atonement, not wrath. Our Lord’s self-sacrifice bespeaks a gracious God, not an angry God.

Yes indeed, God forgives n a way that takes sin seriously, but he is always ready to forgive and does not have to be persuaded on that score. Remember the elementary truth that the cross reconciles the world to God, not God to the world (2 Cor 5:19). God is the reconciler, not the one requiring reconciliation. God is the subject, not the object, of reconciliation. Love for sinners, not anger, brought Jesus into the world. — Flame of Love, page 107

<idle musing>
Amen and amen! God is the initiator—and praise God for that!
</idle musing>

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