The Cry From The Cross

Jesus’ cry of dereliction, My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me? (Mark 15:34), has been the subject of much discussion. Some believe that these words are to be understood literally—that God separated Himself from Jesus as part of Him bearing our sins. I’m not aware of anything regarding Christ’s atoning work that necessitates GodContinue reading “The Cry From The Cross”

Thinking About The Atonement (1)

The challenge of communication is not simply knowing what someone said—it’s understanding what they meant by their words. That’s why we tend to listen more carefully or speak more precisely with people we don’t know well. We want to make sure we hear their words or they hear ours in the proper context. With those we know well,Continue reading “Thinking About The Atonement (1)”

Thinking About The Atonement (2)

This much everyone agrees with—Christ died for our sins (1 Corinthians 15:3). But what exactly does that mean? How did His death bring us life? Here is the atonement in four parts.  1.  Jesus honored God and His purpose in creating man fully and completely. He lived to do His Father’s will in a way that no oneContinue reading “Thinking About The Atonement (2)”

The Cross: Punishment or Suffering?

Did God punish Jesus at the cross? When you put it that way it sounds rather stark, doesn’t it? I think there would be unanimous agreement that God didn’t punish Jesus for anything He personally did. He had no sin (Hebrews 4:14ff). But after this, there would be some significant divergence. There would be more thanContinue reading “The Cross: Punishment or Suffering?”

A Roman Cross and a Jewish Carpenter (2)

If you take this political/religious template and lay it over the New Testament, it opens another dimension of understanding. Jesus’ birth becomes a political event. He was born to overthrow Rome. Not in the civil sense of occupying an earthly throne, but in the sense that He was to be everything Rome was pretending to be.Continue reading “A Roman Cross and a Jewish Carpenter (2)”

A Roman Cross and a Jewish Carpenter (1)

We’re accustomed to thinking about the gospel in terms of the conflict and conquering experienced by Jesus. Whether His opponent was Satan, death, or sin, Christ met with and triumphed over them all. We’ve traveled down the paths of Scripture that develop these truths many times and have benefitted greatly from the journey. But thereContinue reading “A Roman Cross and a Jewish Carpenter (1)”

Sin and the Cross (3)

In the first two pieces, we looked at sin as a relational act of rebellion against our Father that exists at the community level as well as a personal level. We’ll build on this as we look at sin at a more cosmic level. This is challenging because what we’re told in Scripture leaves usContinue reading “Sin and the Cross (3)”

Sin and the Cross (2)

In a previous piece it was suggested that the ultimate way to look at sin and understand it is in relational terms. Sin is pictured in many ways in the biblical witness: financially, as wages, legally, spoilage, etc. These are all helpful in unpacking certain aspects of sin and enabling us to understand it fromContinue reading “Sin and the Cross (2)”

Sin and the Cross (1)

How do we look at our children? If they’re in school, then we certainly have an academic perspective of them. We keep up with how they’re doing, what their assignments are, and what their proficiencies are as well as what challenges them. We develop realistic expectations and encourage them to reach certain goals. But inContinue reading “Sin and the Cross (1)”