Religion Magazine

Did Jesus Die to Save Us From God?

By Kashifqdn @kashifqdn
Why did Jesus have to die? Was it to appease a wrathful God's demand for punishment? Does that mean Jesus died to save us from God? How could someone ever truly love or trust a God like that? How can that ever be called "Good News?" It's questions like these that make so many people want to have nothing to do with Christianity. Countless people filling our pews have adopted this hurtful view of God and themselves. It has led many to internalize feelings of shame and self-loathing, thinking this is what God desires. Others have lost their faith entirely because of it, unable to worship a God who seems to them to be a moral monster. Faith motivated by fear, threat, and feelings of worthlessness. How could things have gone so wrong? When did the good news become bad news? Behind all of this lies an understanding of the cross rooted in retributive justice known as penal substitution. Simply put: in this theory of the atonement Jesus is punished (penal) instead of us (substitution). Penal substitution is, without question, the most widespread theory of the atonement today. So much so, that many people do not think of it as a theory at all, but simply as "what the Bible says." Consequently, in an effort to be true to the teachings of the Bible, many Christians struggle to believe in penal substitution, even though it seems wrong and hurtful to them. We hate it, but think this is what God wants us to believe. Did Jesus Die to Save Us From God?
In my new book Healing the Gospel: A Radical Vision for Grace, Justice, and the Cross I propose an alternative: The book takes a deep look at Scripture and makes the case that the above view is neither representative of Jesus and his teachings, nor is it reflective of the New Testament. Rather, it is the result of people projecting their worldly understanding of punitive justice onto the biblical text. Read more »*This blog is completely unofficial and in no way represents Islam Ahmadiyya or the views of anyone except the author themself.*

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