A discussion on the ‘atonement’

Pete Enns (very bad person and was ‘sacked’ cos he could not affirm inerrancy… so very BAD) is a very smart person but makes many things simpler for the rest of us and hosts podcasts on The Bible for Normal People and the one at the top of the list (Episode 273) is an interview with Jennifer Garcia Bashaw and gives helpful summaries on various theories on the atonement. A skim through summary. Maybe the most popular, penal substitution, gets zero votes and if you add my vote to hers then we have to work out the total of 0+0.

She leans heavily on what is becoming very popular – the end of scapegoating – interesting… my opinion – very attractive, but probably too influenced by a recent understanding that is read back (the scapegoat of the Day of Atonement does not operate in this way).

So, I am still pretty much sitting with the defeat of the powers – with the power of sin (singular, not the sum total of my sins plus yours) and death – being central to that. The work of God as human on our behalf (so not substitutionary and not dualistic of God and the devil in battle… so podcast guys, make a bit of a correction to the section where you talk of the weakness of Christus Victor being dualistic.

2 thoughts on “A discussion on the ‘atonement’

  1. There’s a Nomad Podcast with Ched Myers (April 2023) where he unpacks the political context of the cross-well worth a listen I think. My thought is that Jesus constantly defeated the powers at every turn and parable and always was good news. The cross and resurrection becomes a united trinitarian “walk this way”. Difficult to take bread and wine without also remembering the countless other bodies that Jesus identifies with that have been killed by the ‘powers’ and can that stretch to the planet also? Is this part of what Paul is saying that in sharing the table ‘we don’t recognise the body’. Jesus identified with those Saul was killing. So, yes can’t eat for just my sin, but for the whole body, which as I get ‘older!seems to include a whole lot more than I was first taught…

    1. Thanks Simon… once we get away from the big ‘ME’ and realise that there is a cosmic dimension to the cross we find something much richer and something that includes ‘me’.
      Ched Myers has consistently had this emphasis on the ‘powers’.

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