Part II – Understanding Christ’s Cry of Abandonment

Part II – Understanding Christ’s Cry of Abandonment

In response to the last post (Understanding Christ’s Cry of Abandonment), I have been asked about Pope Saint John Paul’s II comment on Christ’s cry, taken from one his Encyclical On the Christian Meaning of Human Suffering: One can say that these words on abandonment are born at the level of that inseparable union of the Son with the Father, and are born because the Father “laid on him the iniquity of us all”. They also...

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Understanding Jesus’ Cry of Abandonment

Understanding Jesus’ Cry of Abandonment

Now that Good Friday is fast approaching we can expect to see a surge in online discussion about Christ’s saving work on the Cross. In this post I want to discuss Christ’s ‘cry of abandonment’ from the Cross – “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” (Mt 27:46; Mk 15:34) – because I feel this is one of the most misunderstood texts in all of Scripture. The historical Protestant (mis)understanding of Christ’s Atonement,...

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Why a Legal Fiction is not Pulp Fiction

Why a Legal Fiction is not Pulp Fiction

*** By Jonathan Prejean *** Recently, I’ve read several comments from Reformed Christians on the question of Catholics calling the Reformed doctrine of imputation a “legal fiction.” Based on my reading of those comments, some Reformed Christians see the description “legal fiction” as similar to saying that it is “made up” and not true. But that would only be relevant in the literary context, when one is...

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The Need for Perfect Law-Keeping, Part 2

The Need for Perfect Law-Keeping, Part 2

The previous post took a brief look at the Reformed understanding of Justification and why the notion of “Imputation of Christ’s Righteousness” is both logically and exegetically problematic. This post will continue to focus on the exegetical problems, this time in Paul’s Epistles, particularly the first five chapters of Romans (which many Reformed consider to be the definitive passages on the doctrine of Justification). Paul begins...

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It is Finished. . . .

It is Finished. . . .

As a kind of wrap-up to our series on the atonement, here’s what has been argued thus far: First, the way the Old Testament in general uses the term, and speaks of the concept of, atonement is one in which a sacrificial gift is offered by the offender to the offended that, due to its inherent value, satisfies and appeases the one to whom it is given. Guilt or punishment is never attributed to the offering. Second, this general idea is...

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The Silence of the Lambs

The Silence of the Lambs

I admit I am at a bit of a loss regarding where to go with this series on the atonement. The whole reason we initially delved into the Old Testament and its Levitical sacrifices was to lay some groundwork for turning to the Epistle to the Hebrews, since that is the New Testament’s locus classicus  when it comes to the idea of priestly sacrifice. But as I look over the epistle and consider its relevant texts, I can’t seem to find a...

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