Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Are you satisfied?

Speaking of Joe (from a few posts ago), he shared a blog post on Facebook over the Easter Weekend.  It is written by Brain Zahnd (brianzahnd.com) and is a post called "How does 'Dying for our sins' work?"

We say that all the time - Christ died for our sins.  Our bible study has been exploring that topic, looking at different theories of atonement each week as part of the "24 Hours that changed the World" (Adam Hamilton) series.

Zahnd calls some of those theories abhorrent, and I must agree.  We sometimes portray the Father as needing a sacrifice to be placated, or as a god who requires a quid pro quo to "gain the necessary capital to forgive sinners."  Those kind of theories don't fit the image of God that I have  from scripture.

He goes on to say that "before anything else, it (the crucifixion) is a catastrophe.  He echoes passages from the book of Acts to support that statement.
The Bible is clear, God did not kill Jesus.  Jesus was offered as a sacrifice in that the Father was willing to send his Son into our sinful system in order to expose it as utterly sinful and provide us with another way.
The crucifixion is "about the revelation of a merciful God."  When Jesus asks God to forgive those who have done this, he is not asking for something he doesn't expect.  He knows the heart of his Father, and this is not contrary to it.

Always remember, that in the acts and words of Christ, we see revealed the very nature of God.

Go read the post - it's really good.

And one more Julian of Norwich quote:
And this was shown to me when he said:  Are you well satisfied?  And by what Christ next said:  If you are satisfied, I am satisfied, he made me understand that it was as if he had said, "this is joy and delight enough for me, and I ask nothing else for my labor but that I may satisfy you.  Generously and completely was this revealed to me."
Are you satisfied?  Do you understand?  Do you get it?  That Christ (and God, as revealed by Christ) died so that you would come to understand that God loves you.  To quote Zahnd, "We are seeing the lengths to which a God of love will go in forgiving sin."

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