Thursday, November 26, 2009

Reading the Classics with Challies - Redemption Accomplished and Applied

Chapter III - The Perfection of the Atonement

In chapter three Murray contends that "the satisfaction of Christ is the only satisfaction for sin and is so perfect and final that it leaves no penal liability for any sin of the believer." (Murray, John. Redemption Accomplished and Applied.Grand Rapids: Eerdmans. 1955. p51) Murray is writing against Roman Catholic doctrines as well as any other doctrine that might "allow the notion of human satisfaction to intrude itself in our construction of justification or sanctification" (51). In accepting any such belief, it would rob "the Redeemer of the glory of his once-for-all accomplishment."(51)

Murray proceeds to explain other features of the work of Christ which confirm it as final, perfect, and efficacious:

1. The Historic Objectivity - "In the atonement something was accomplished once for all, without any participation or contribution on our part. A work was perfected which antedates any and every recognition and response on the part of those who are beneficiaries...History with its fixed appointments and well-defined periods has significance in the drama of divine accomplishments. The historical conditioning and locating of events in time cannot be erased nor their significance under-estimated. And what is true of the event of the incarnation is true also of the redemption wrought. Both are historically located and neither is suprahistorical or contemporary." (52-3)

2. The Finality - "The atonement is a completed work, never repeated and unrepeatable...Our definition of atonement must be derived from the atonement of which the Scripture speaks. And the atonement of which Scripture speaks is the vicarious obedience, expiation, propitiation, reconciliation, and redemption performed by the Lord of glory when, once for all, he purged our sins and sat down at the right hand of the majesty on high."(53-5)

3. The Uniqueness - "Christ has indeed given us an example that we should follow in his steps. But it is never proposed that this emulation on our part is to extend to the work of expiation, propitiation, reconciliation, and redemption which he accomplished...From whatever angle we look upon his sacrifice we find its uniqueness to be inviolable as the uniqueness of his person, of his mission, and of his office."(55-6)

4. The Intrinsic Efficacy - "The atonement is the provision of the Father's love and grace. But there is equal need for remembering that the work wrought by Christ was in itself intrinsically adequate to meet all the exigencies created by our sins and all the demands of God's holiness and justice. Christ discharged the debt of sin. He did not make a token payment which God accepts in the place of the whole. Our debts are not canceled; they are liquidated. Christ procured redemption and therefore he secured it. He met in himself and swallowed up the full toll of divine condemnation and judgment against sin. He wrought righteousness which is the proper ground of complete justification and the title to everlasting life." (57-8)

No comments:

Post a Comment