propitiatory offering and was thereby practically demonstrated and exhibited. ?On account of the passing by of sins that had previously taken place,? i.e., because he had allowed the pre-Christian sins to go without punishment, whereby his righteousness had been lost sight of and obscured, and had come to need an e]ndeixiv , or exhibition to men. Omission is not acquittal. Pa>resiv passing by is intermediate between pardon and punishment. ?In virtue of the forbearance of God, expresses the motive of the pa>resiv . Before Christ?s sacrifice, God?s administration was a scandal; it needed vindication. The atonement is God?s answer to the charge of freeing the guilty.
?Verse 26. Eijv to< ei=nai is not epexegetical of eijv e]ndeixin , but presents the teleology of the iJ;asth>rion , the final aim of the whole affirmation from o[n proe>qeto to kairw~| ? namely, first, God?s being just, and secondly, his appearing just in consequence of this. Justus et justificans, instead of justus et condemnans , this is the summumum paradoxon evangelicum. Of this revelation of righteousness, not through condemnation, but through atonement, grace is the determining ground.?
We repeat what was said on pages 719, 720 , with regard to the teaching of the passage, namely, that it shows that Christ?s death is a propitiatory sacrifice. Its first and main effect is upon God. The particular attribute in God that demands the atonement in his justice, or holiness and that the satisfaction of this holiness is the necessary condition of God?s justifying the believer. It is only incidentally and subordinately that the atonement is a necessity to man. Paul speaks of it here mainly as a necessity to God. Christ suffers, indeed, that God may appear righteous but behind the appearance lies the reality; the main object of Christ?s suffering is that God may be righteous while he pardons the believing sinner. In other words, the ground of the atonement is something internal to God himself. See <580210>Hebrews 2:10 ? it ?became? God = it was morally fitting in God, to make Christ suffer; cf. <380608>Zechariah 6:8 ? ?they that go toward the north country have quieted my spirit in the north country? = the judgments inflicted on Babylon have satisfied my justice.
Charnock: ?He who once ?quenched the violence of fire? for those Hebrew children, has also quenched the fires of God?s anger against the sinner, hotter than furnace heated seven times.? The same God who is a God of holiness and who, in virtue of his holiness must punish human sin, is also a God of mercy and in virtue of his mercy himself bears the punishment of human sin. Dorner, Gesch. prot. Theologie, 93 ? ?Christ is not only mediator between God and man but between the just God and the merciful God? ? cf. <198510>Psalm 85:10 ? ?Mercy and truth are met together;
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