Monday, 25 March 2013

His Cry is our Cry

'The problem with penal theories of the atonement is not that they claim too much but that they claim too little, and that little which they do claim is shrouded in a suspiciously pagan notion of punishment as penalty. Paul's claim that Christ was made sin for us, suggests a far more radical and comprehensive identification. The eternal Son becomes wholly what we are: the one who is truly God assumes human flesh, the one who is sinless is made sin; the incorruptible bears our corruption; the immortal dies our death; the one who is the judge takes our place as the judged, bearing entirely the consequences of our sin and corruption, sharing our forsakenness, dying our death. The cry of abandonment that Jesus cries is nothing less than our cry of abandonment: his cry is the cry of the child murdered by Herod's soldiers; his cry is the cry of the abused slave; his cry is the cry of the woman being raped; his cry is the cry of terror from the gas chamber; his cry is the cry of despair from the one contemplating suicide; his cry is the cry of lament from the psalmist; his is the desolation of every man and woman. Every human cry of despair is unique and particular - the particularity of individual suffering is not abolished at the Cross - but every human cry of despair is echoed in his cry, he enters fully into our desolation, our sin, our pain, our abuse, our dying, our death; he becomes what we are that we, through his entering into the desolation, might become what he is, the true humanity that is our destiny and calling.'

John Colwell, Why Have You Forsaken Me, p 99

No comments: