Einerseits freut es mich, dass Richard Mouw, Präsident des Fuller Theological Seminary (USA), in seinem Beitrag für Christianity Today moderat die Bedeutung des stellvertretenden Sühneopfers von Jesus Christus hervorhebt:
While our sinful condition can contain elements of ignorance and victimhood, those factors cannot fully account for our guilty state before God. Adam and Eve were not merely clueless or victims. The older theological term for their posture was “ethical rebellion”: disobedience, initiated by the deliberate turning of their wills against the designs of the Creator. And, to cite another formulation: “In Adam’s Fall we sinned all.” If we are held captive to principalities and powers, it is because of choices for which God holds us responsible. Only Christ’s atoning work can deliver us from the consequences of those choices. And that deliverance required taking upon himself the burden of our sin and guilt.
But what of the charge that the intra-Trinitarian transaction—Jesus “satisfying” the Father on our behalf—glorifies violent abuse? Of course, the Cross is indeed a display of violence toward Jesus, and no atonement theory can avoid that fact. The Christus Victor perspective explains that the violence inflicted upon Jesus was caused by the demonic principalities and powers, and that God allowed this in order to demonstrate that the powers were unable to destroy the Son. The “moral influence” theory, on the other hand, emphasizes the ways in which Jesus suffered violence at human hands—with the redemptive significance of that suffering showing forth in the way that Jesus selflessly forgave his enemies. Thus, while the divine satisfaction theory may be unique in seeing Jesus as directly experiencing the wrath of the Father, all of the views see Jesus as taking suffering upon himself in order to fulfill a divinely ordained redemptive mission.
But those of us who want to retain the notion of the Savior experiencing the divine wrath against sin have to be very careful in how we depict the punishment inflicted on the cross. Here, the late John Stott speaks wisely. In his great work The Cross of Christ, he warns us against adopting any picture of the Atonement where God the Father is seen as “a pitiless ogre whose wrath has to be assuaged.” The Father and the Son were united together “in the same holy love which made atonement necessary.” While the words satisfaction and substitution must never “in any circumstances be given up,” Stott argues, we must also be clear that “[t]he biblical gospel of atonement is of God satisfying himself by substituting himself for us.”
Andererseits frage ich mich, wie er an seinem Seminar Tony Jones beschäftigen kann, der sich unter anderem in seinem Buch A Better Atonement sehr dezidiert sowohl gegen die Ursünde als auch das stellvertretende Sühneopfer ausgesprochen hat. Anything goes?!