On Divine Child Abuse

About a decade ago it became avant garde theology to contend the classical Christian theory of atonement was nothing less than divine child abuse. That is, the image of a Father punishing a Son, or exacting retribution at the expense of his own Son, or punishing a Son for the good of others — each [Read More...]

“The Wrath of God Satisfied”

The title for this post comes from the line in the hymn that has this before it: “And on that Cross, where Jesus died.” We’ve got rhythm and we’ve got rhyme, but do we have NT theology? Back in the 1950s and 1960s C.H. Dodd and L.L. Morris locked horns on this one: Dodd said [Read More...]

Atonement Theories Demonstrated

Here a priest seeks to demonstrate the difference between Protestant/evangelical views of atonement and the Orthodox theory. It takes 9 minutes but is worth your time and a discussion. I am not entirely sure this view is that much different than the Protestant/evangelical view (what do you think?). [Read more...]

Atonement, Michael Gorman’s Thesis

This post is by Lee Wyatt, who blogs at Marginal Christianity. Sometimes the Answer is Right in Front of Our Noses: A Compelling Case of for “New Covenant Atonement” by Michael Gorman In the welter of talk and writing about “atonement” during the last fifteen years or so, a few things have become clearer while others [Read More...]

Justice and Peace — and Atonement

Darrin W. Snyder Belousek teaches philosophy and religion at Ohio Northern University and Bluffton University. He taught previously at various church-related colleges—Louisburg College, Bethel College, Lithuania Christian College, Goshen College, and St. Mary’s College. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Notre Dame and has studied at Associated Mennonite Biblical Seminary. He has published [Read More...]

Beyond Atonement Theories

In the last decade or so atonement theories grabbed the center of theological discussion. Which theory was best? Penal substitution, the essence of the atonement for much of conservative Protestants and evangelicalism, was asked to sit down a while so that other theories could be given attention, including the classic Christus Victor theory so well [Read More...]

Kingdom and Cross

It is too easy to want kingdom and forget the cross, or make it part of one’s agenda; and it is too easy to want cross, and not know what to make of the kingdom. But Israel’s Story, Israel’s God, the people of God, and the clash of the forces of evil with the ways [Read More...]

Anabaptism and Atonement: Thomas Finger

This from Thomas Finger, A Contemporary Anabaptist Theology, 361-362, where we find one of Anabaptism’s finest theologians seeking to do justice to both the Anabaptist tradition (which he says was most centrally Christus Victor) and to the Bible, articulates his own view as follows: What do you think of this explanation of atonement? Adequate? Sufficient? [Read More...]

Pardons, Forgiveness and America’s Justice

A Christian governor, Haley Barbour, pardoned a bundle of criminals and he did so on the basis of his Christian theology of forgiveness. What he did is a tradition in Mississippi. What say you? “The historical power of clemency by the governor to pardon felons is rooted in the Christian idea of giving second chances,” [Read More...]

Simply Jesus 5

Perhaps the most perplexing issue in the historical Jesus debate of the last two decades was how to make a solid connection between Jesus’ kingdom vision and the crucifixion as an atoning death. How, some of us were asking, do we get from Luke 4:16-30, Jesus’ inaugural kingdom sketch, to Romans 3:21-26? Many historical Jesus [Read More...]


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