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Gift horse

This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. 1 John 4. 10


Today's word is... propitiation! If that leaves you cold, see above for the apostle John's pithy definition. Propitiation is very like justification and not a million miles away from expiation. All these technical terms have to do with how God deals with the problem of sin and, in particular our sin. Because the good news is that, while God hates sin, he loves sinners - like us. This places a challenge before the Almighty: how to satisfy his own standards of justice, while securing freedom for those who deserve punishment?


God's answer is to enter the fray and take the punishment we deserve, in order that we light enjoy the fruits of his righteousness, which are mercy and peace. And that, in a nutshell, is what propitiation is all about - which brings us up close and personal to another old friend: grace - God's riches at Christ's expense. Praise God for ability to lavish us with his love while upholding the principles of justice, protecting what is good from the ravages of what is evil.

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