This Sunday we’ll be finishing up chapter 2 of 1 Peter – reading 1Peter 2:24-25. To go along with this study, it would be a good idea to become familiar with Isaiah 53. We actually taught on that chapter on Wednesday night a few weeks ago – if you’re interested, you can listen to it here: Isa 53
Peter wants to be sure that we don’t see Christ’s death on the cross just as a good example for us…it’s far more than that. When he says that “He (Jesus) Himself bore our sins” … I’m one who believes that this is talking about the substitutionary atonement provided by Christ’s sacrificial death – though I’m not hard and fast on calling it a Penal Substitution – I do see the early church representing substitution even in the Christus Victor model of atonement. If you don’t agree with this position…well…ok. If you don’t have a clue what I’m talking about…well…ok, too. It’s probably not that important. Sometimes we get pretty caught up in the mechanics of atonement when we should be focused on the implications of atonement. Right?
That’s what we’ll be looking at this Sunday. Jesus bore our sins…think of what that implies. Yes…it means he paid for them and we won’t face the consequences in eternity. But what else does it mean, in the here and now? If Jesus bore them, should we be trying to make up for them? Should be be living in regret over them? What do you think?
By his wounds we are healed. I know that some people think this means that physical healing is guaranteed in the atonement – but I see this as a poetic contrast about life in general. He got hurt, I got healed. I can make a clean break from a sin-centered life and begin brand new. What does this imply about the life we live right now?
Because of the cross, we are returned to the Shepherd, the Guardian of our souls (the life that is unique to each of us). What does the cross tell us about God’s attitude toward us? Is there anything you find encouraging about that – and if so, what?
Hope to see you this Sunday!