Summary Of John Green's Penal Substitution

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Summary: Green begins his chapter by outlining two of the main ways that he sees popular Atonement Theology spreading. The first is the popular “Penal Substitution” doctrine, and the other is a disregard for the doctrine of Atonement Theology altogether. He then begins to form an argument against “Penal Substitution” by attacking the concept of God as the subject of the cross and Jesus as the object, an image that, to Green, paints God as an abusive father. In the same line of thinking, he debates the literal take that most Christians adopt when it comes to the New Testament metaphors. He argues that we as Christians cannot found our entire Atonement Theology on these metaphors, as their descriptive capabilities can only go so far before they break down. He then offers an alternative to the “Penal Substitution” doctrine so popularized by the literal interpretation of these aforementioned…show more content…
I think that, while it is dangerous to wrap one’s entire atonement theology around, it is simply an easy way to grasp a particular aspect of atonement. Green would argue, and I agree, that each metaphor in the New Testament, rather than trying to encompass the whole of atonement, is merely shedding light on one aspect of it. Now, I do not think that most Christians whose beliefs are in line with the Penal Substitution Doctrine are aware of the inferences of said doctrine. For the most part I am sure that they are simply taking the analogy of the New Testament at its word and not at all pondering the consequences of said belief. I also agree with Green that we should be searching for and modeling new metaphors for our current culture. That said, however, I believe that the metaphors used in the New Testament are more than sufficient for an accurate understanding for atonement, as they come from the infallible word of
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