Day 31


“In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His son to be the propitiation (the atoning sacrifice) for our sins.”  (1 John 4:10)

Here John uses a big theological word that is the basis of all forgiveness. What does is mean that Christ is our “propitiation”?

R.C. Sproul gives a good definition of propitiation: “Propitiation has to do with what brings about a change in God’s attitude toward us, so that we are restored to the fellowship and favor of God. In a sense, propitiation points to God’s being appeased. If I am angry because you have offended me, but you then appease me, the problem will be
removed. Thus propitiation brings in the personal element and stresses that God is no longer angry with us.”

We have all heard, and probably have used the phrase, “God hates the sin, but loves the sinner.” The fact is that God’s hatred of sin separates him from the sinner and the sinner will never fully experience God’s love without the sin being removed. God does this through Christ’s death, where Christ suffered the punishment we deserve.

Wayne Grudem said, “A propitiation is a sacrifice that bears God’s wrath to the end, and in so doing changes God’s wrath toward us into His favor (toward us).” In other words, Jesus paid the price for our sin so that we can now be rightly related to God as our heavenly Father.

What God demands from us for us to be made right with Him was provided for us in the death of His Son Jesus Christ.

The way He justifies us is by Jesus bearing the totality of our sins on the cross as though He committed them, even though He is completely innocent and completely righteous when it comes to sin.  2 Corinthians 5:21 sums up what Jesus has done for us, “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”

Application of God’s Truth

God’s forgiveness has been secured with the once-for-all sacrifice of His Son, Jesus Christ. Once you ask forgiveness, say in your heart, “I am clean and made righteous through Christ’s death for me.”