Showing posts from May, 2019

Jesus' ascension: What does it mean for us?

On Sunday, June 2, 2019, many churches will celebrate  Jesus' ascension from earth to the Father's right hand in heaven ( Luke 24:50-51; Acts 1:1-2 ).  But what does Jesus' ascension mean for us? We'll answer that question in this post. Ascension of Christ (public domain via Wikimedia Commons) In Royal Priesthood: A Theology of Ordained Ministry , T.F. Torrance notes the truth that Jesus ascended "in the fullness of His Humanity," remaining "bone of our bone and flesh of our flesh" so that in union with him, we are "bone of His bone and flesh of His flesh ( Eph. 5.30 )" (p. 43). Torrance exhorts the church to take this truth seriously: If Jesus Christ is not risen in Body, then salvation is not actualized in the same sphere of reality in which we are, and we are yet in our sins ( 1 Cor. 15.17 ). If Jesus Christ is not ascended in the fullness of His Humanity, then we have no anchor within the veil and there is no hope for us men

Torrance: one atonement, three aspects

This post [updated 5/19/19] continues a series that explores  T.F. Torrance in Plain English  wherein Stephen D. Morrison presents nine key ideas in Thomas F. Torrance's Christocentric Trinitarian theology.  For other posts in the series, click a number:  1 ,  2 ,  3 ,  4 ,  5 ,  6 , 7 ,  9 . Last time  we explored Torrance's key idea of  Christ's vicarious humanity,  noting that he views the incarnation as saving and the atonement as incarnational. This time we'll continue looking at Torrance's understanding of the atonement, noting now his key idea of a threefold atonement--- one atonement with three aspects, all in and through Jesus Christ. Christ on the Cross Between Two Thieves by Peter Paul Rubens (public domain via Wikimedia Commons) As Morrison notes, Torrance avoids reductionist theories of atonement because they fail to account for the full witness of Scripture concerning the atonement. Torrance's doctrine of the atonement is non-theoretic

Torrance: Christ's vicarious humanity

This post continues a series exploring  T.F. Torrance in Plain English  wherein Stephen D. Morrison presents nine key ideas in the Christocentric Trinitarian theology of Thomas F. Torrance.  For other posts in the series, click a number:  1 ,  2 ,  3 ,  4 , 5 , 6 , 8 , 9 .   Last time  we looked at Torrance's key idea of Christ's twofold mediation. This time we'll explore a related key idea: Christ's vicarious humanity (a doctrine that also addresses the Christian life). Morrison offers this summary: Jesus lived as a human  united to His Father, reconciling our humanity to God through His vicarious life of perfect faith, obedience, and prayer. The Christian life in all its aspects has been taken up in His life lived in our name and on our behalf. Our faith is understood rightly as an echo within His faith, sustained and made perfect in Him. We are set free from the burden of looking over our shoulders and worrying if we have "enough" faith, what little