Friday, August 12, 2011

The Gospel in Two Chairs

I greatly enjoyed Brian Zahnd's book Unconditional. - the best book I've read this year. This video from is the first time I have heard him speak.

Very interesting presentation.  Watch the video before considering my further comments.

Brian contrasts what he considers two versions of the gospel story:  the western legal version and a patristic (from the early church fathers) redemptive version. My response is to ask why we have to choose between the two versions? There is nothing fundamentally contradictory or incompatible between the two summaries of the gospel message,.  I believe both are essentially Biblical.  They expand and compliment each other.

The only problem I have with Brian's presentation is the idea that the first version pits Jesus against God.  No way, God forbid! I have never heard the gospel taught that way.  God was in Christ, bearing His own just wrath on our behalf. Both versions properly understood show God as being like the Jesus of the four Gospels.

I refuse to choose between two Biblical presentations. I believe both. What do you think?