You've Got It Totally Upside Down!

In the New Testament there are two ways one can approach the doctrine of redemption as in the cross, or rather with the crucifixion of Christ. The most popular - since it is the simplest to explain - is that Christ faced the blame for the sins of the Christian believer, and that the blame died with Him and is witnessed to by the resurrection that not only is the price of sin paid in full, but it is a first payment made on our complete salvation, so that the suffering of Christ crucified is the root of all our strength in the gospel, that we always find the strength to go that little bit further than we formerly thought we were able. (To resist temptation and mortify the sins of the flesh as if they were crucified in Christ.)

The second approach follows more closely that of Paul's doctrine, and states that Christ Himself mediated grace at the Father's own commandment; that all of Christ's words of grace were direct verbatim from the Father, and that Christ, crucified for blasphemy was raised from the dead (i.e. not damned) to prove the words of the Father genuine toward us all. In the resurrection we see the power of God, more so than the cross, an unfortunate death for a traitor.

Simply put, the first approach (we call option one) has led the church to the point of stating that Christ was in receipt of the punishment for all our sins, a clear heresy that God would be of the character to torture His Son for our benefit, rather than for God to freely choose as "option two" above instead. Simply put, Christ bore our sins as if he were a blasphemer - and found guilty (at least) whilst in front of the Sanhedrin and their kangaroo court. Whilst Christ was dead entombed those sins were upon His person - but He was already dead and was not then punished for them. Even on the cross He was guilty of no crime to be punished for, as per the words of the thief with Him - Yet the crowd said "He saved others, lets see him save himself".

So, as option two is preferable, does it have equivalence to the first approach? Clearly In the old testament the words of Christ crucified are of a suffering servant as per option one, and this very closely follows the blood atonement for sins, as if Christ were carrying the blame. However; the NT states that with the old covenant was the sprinkling of blood to sanctify the priestly vestments etc. Thus we see that the offering made is holy for dedication and such a lamb used was always without spot - hardly an image of blame, but rather of a holy cost toward God for us, as in our place.

Christ as esteemed stricken and smitten by God for our sins underwent those three days in the grave under all that suspicion of blasphemy as to the world, and so for those three days of grief, Christ bore our sins whole. But he was never guilty of any of them, or punished for them - rather He was happy to show by example the end and strength of His own obedience, which is also very close to stating option one above.

Yet, in the OT we cannot expect the mediation of grace brought with Jesus Christ (all that went before him are liars and robbers) and so we see only option one in the OT, and we see option one and two in the NT, with option two being the reasonable explanation for the method by which option one is instantiated. (In the NT is the OT revealed)

There is no cause for Christ to be offered more than once, we clearly have no requirement for continued sacrifices. What we have upside down is the view of God that Israel had before the crucifixion and the Israel elect has after the resurrection. During those three days the world was turned upside down - indeed the OT promise of option one must have made satan drool at the thought of shaming God in defeat. However, option two, (never clearly explained in the OT) seems to have been somewhat above satan's ability to reckon.

So, option one is inverted to make option two after the resurrection.

Without a new covenant mediated by grace Israel had no knowledge of God except through their endless propitiations. When Christ came they both acknowledged and killed Him. Were they completely without prophecy, not knowing the new covenant? It had been promised, but it was not what they expected.

Likewise, when we search the scriptures we acknowledge the OT form of option one and gloss over the NT form of option two that justifies option one in full. The approach then is somewhat flawed: but those three days have their worth: for Christ was clearly dead and entombed until the resurrection and His justification before all His disciples.

Option one, Christ is blamed,... option two Christ has no blame.

During those three days, our sin before God was quenched with the holiness of Christ. Thus the world (I.e. the "not Christ") is inverted from condemnation before God under the law, to righteousness in Christ (i.e. those "in Christ" or "as Christ" - Christians) and we see the total inversion (turning upside down) of the world about the saved remnant of Israel (the elect) left in Christ. (As the vessel Israel is remade into another new vessel.)

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