A lot of recent convo’s into atonement and it’s meaning have revealed a few things to me that I haven’t thought about in some time and I made some conclusions on my part (and again, that is open to change because this is a process of learning). However, it raises the best questions around – which I will get into.
Firstly, the atonement is a thing that has little bearing on the way faith is played out right now. We still struggle with sin, we are still going to die, and the Torah/Prophets is still waiting complete fulfillment. So what does the atonement really mean in current context? Resurrection, sin, and death are all things to be dealt with at a ‘later date’ – and we use them figuratively to foreshadow that day. I know I struggle with a variety of sins so what does it all mean? I will die because this is the human reality.
Secondly, this leads me to a ‘common ground’ thing – concerning our fellow compatriots in Judaism. Are we not all just following the Torah and Prophets – us being Gentiles (and not quite as closely as they do) and they being Jewish? Isn’t this our role right now – to follow the teachings of God and develop our faith that way? To be perfectly honest, the Torah and Prophets is not completely fulfilled (according to my view of it) – so isn’t the Judaic way quite alright a way to follow? Just cause we are Gentiles should not cancel out the greatness of the faith that inspired us – Judaism.
Lastly, the real problem has ‘come alive’ of what really seperates us. Brad makes this point ‘Of course, key to this aspect of orthodox doctrine is that Jesus’ death, while sufficient and freely given for all, is only effectual for those who know Him.’ It doesn’t matter though – because we are all still just following the teachings of God at this point – and Jesus (and all the letter writers) – only elaborate on original Judaic texts. One can ascertian the Jewish faith actually follows the teachings of God…this is my opinion.
Jesus’ death was sufficient for what? Forgiveness of sins? Isn’t this all subject as to whether we follow the teachings of God (to be forgiving or what not) and thus should recieve that mercy? How can we be sure someone knows God is the better question?