I’ve been reading about atonement metaphors and stumbled across this quote from Forsythe in his WW1 era book “Justifying God”
‘The cross is not a theological theme, nor a forensic device, but the crisis of the moral universe on a scale far greater than earthly war. It is the theodicy of the whole God dealing with the whole soul of the whole world in holy love, righteous judgement and redeeming grace’
Gunton, C. E. (2003). The actuality of atonement : A study of metaphor, rationality, and the Christian tradition (106). London; New York: T&T Clark.
I really like Gunton’s idea of treating various versions of theological thinking about the Atonement as metaphors attempting to map human meaning onto divine action rather than as full explanations explaining the mechanisms of justification.
More to come from this line of thinking I expect.
It’s nice to see someone quoting from a book I actually have on my shelves! Perhaps I will reread this one. Gunton died just prior to the Hebrew conference at St Andrews in 2006 where he had been scheduled to speak. What will we do about metaphor! It seems to be an immensely creative power, perhaps even creating matter by its action on the spirit.