Summary: The Atonement for our sins provided by Jesus on the cross is a once and for all fulfillment of the Old Testament atonement which was temporary. Christ's atonement is pivotal in understanding salvation by grace and faith alone in Jesus Christ.
The cross is the logo of Christianity - the cross was the great intersection of God with humanity!
One of the great provisions of the cross is the atonement. Let's read about atonement in
Romans 3:21-26 (Please open your Bibles and follow along as I read from God's Holy Word)
I was looking online at some definitions of atonement ranging from KJV only sites to Catholic sites and on each end of the spectrum I found the definition of Atone being a combination of the words At + One = Atone
Does the base word atone used in atonement actually mean that it makes us “at one” with God?
Hint: that is a little word-play actually only works in English
Let's see if it works in Spanish
At = En
One = Un
Atone = Expair
Atonement = Expiación
En + Un does NOT equal Expair
What about German?
At = Bei
One = Ein
Atone = Suhnen
Atonement = Sühnopfer
Bei + Ein does NOT equal Suhnen
It is amazing what you can find online! And Atone does not mean At One with God although atonement does bring us into a right relationship with God.
The moral of this story is, “Check your Bibles for the truth!”
Now let’s take a look at this section of God’s Holy Word and see what it has to say to us including the awesome work of atonement which the Lord Jesus did for us on the cross of Calvary
Romans 3:21 NIV
“But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify.”
What was the OT righteousness?
- Knowing and obeying the Law and ceremonial rituals
- True OT righteousness fell under the umbrella of
- This is the great thread that runs from the beginning of the Bible to the
end: to love God and to know His Word and to obey His Word as an
outpouring of that love for Him.
So, then what is, “the righteousness of God [that] has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify”?
(Or, should I say Who has been made known?)
We find the answer in the very next verse:
Romans 3:22a NIV
“This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe.”
Jesus Christ - He is the answer. He is the object/subject of our faith and belief.
He is the One about whom the Law and the prophets testify.
He is the One who gives us the righteousness - we don’t earn it, we CAN’T earn it.
He is the One who provides the grace that enables us to have faith and believe.
Romans 3:22b-24 NIV
“There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.”
No difference between Jew and gentile???? This must have been a kick in the head to the Jews!
They had always considered themselves to be superior!
They had the Law of God!
What is the great equalizer? Or what makes Jews and Gentiles equally? Sin!
They are equally bad!
Sin is rebellious disobedience of the known will or law of God by a morally responsible person.
Sin is saying to God, “I know and understand what you want but I’m going to do what I want to do. So there!”