What do we mean when we confess Jesus as “savior”? Should we take our central cues from Jesus’ own portrayal of salvation or from later Christian salvation theologies about Jesus?
My essay, “The Doctrine of Salvation”, argues for an approach that focuses more on the biblical story than doctrinal theology. When we do so, we see God’s mercy as the driving force in the establishment of the possibility of human salvation–not God’s impersonal holiness or justice that must be satisfied by a violent act of sacrifice.
Such a view of salvation undergirds the Christian ethical vocation of peacemaking and restorative justice. God seeks to make us whole so that we might be God’s agents for wholeness in the wider world.
This essay is the eighth in a series that examines core Christian doctrines, consistently asking what shape they should take if they are articulated in light of Jesus.