Categories
Excerpts

Christ’s Death was Substitutionary

The Oxford English Dictionary defines substitution as ‘the putting of one person or thing in the place of another’. One oddity of contemporary Christian talk is that many who affirm that Jesus’ death was vicarious and representative deny that it was substitutionary; for the Dictionary defines both words in substitutionary terms! Representation is said to mean ‘the fact of standing for, or in place of, some other thing or person, esp. with a right or authority to act on their account; substitution of one thing or person for another.’ And vicarious is defined as ‘that takes or supplies the place of another thing or person; substituted instead of the proper thing or person.’ So here, it seems, is a distinction without a difference. Substitution is, in fact, a broad idea that applies whenever one person acts to supply another’s need, or to discharge his obligation, so that the other no longer has to carry the load himself. … In this broad sense, nobody who wishes to say with Paul that there is a true sense in which ‘Christ died for us’ (huper, on our behalf, for our benefit), and ‘Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us’ (huper again) (Rom. 5:8; Gal. 3:13), and who accepts Christ’s assurance that he came ‘to give his life a ransom for many’ (anti, which means precisely ‘in place of’, ‘in exchange for’), should hesitate to say that Christ’s death was substitutionary. Indeed, if he describes Christ’s death as vicarious he is actually saying it.

J. I. Packer, What Did the Cross Achieve?
Categories
Quotes

Sorrow and Sin

We live in a world where sorrow abounds. This has always been its state since sin came in. There cannot be sin without sorrow. And until sin is driven out from the world, it is vain for anyone to suppose he can escape sorrow.

J. C. Ryle
Categories
Excerpts Quotes

The Unused Key

“A key rusteth that is seldom turned in the lock.”

It becomes hard work to stir it, for it becomes rusted into its place. Neglect of prayer makes prayer become hard work, whereas it should be a privilege and a delight. We cannot restrain prayer, and yet enjoy prayer. Frequency in this matter helps fervor, and constancy in it brings out the comfort of it.
Am I becoming slack in devotion? O Lord, forgive me, and save me from this grave neglect before it begins to eat into my soul and corrode my heart!

Charles H. Spurgeon
Categories
Quotes

Our Accent on Preaching

“If ministers do well, it is for their own good; if they preach well, it is for your good.”

Chrysostom

Categories
Excerpts Quotes

Paradox of Humility

God is on high, and yet the higher you lift up yourself, the farther you are from Him; the lower you humble yourself, the nearer He draws to you. Low things He looks close upon, that He may raise them: proud things He knows afar off, that He may depress them. The proud Pharisee pressed as near God as he could: the poor publican, not daring to do so, stood afar off; yet was God far from the Pharisee, near to the publican.

Augustine