The Divine Substitute: The Atonement in the Bible and HistoryBy: Brian H. Edwards, Ian Shaw
God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son. But why was there need for a Divine Substitute? Why did he have to die such a terrible death upon the cross? Was there no other way? What purpose did the physical, mental, and spiritual sufferings of Christ play in Gods plan of salvation? This book explores the very heart of the Christian gospelthe belief that Christ died in the place of sinners, bearing their sin and guilt and the just and holy punishment that they deserved from God. This doctrine has become the subject of intense debate, and it has been claimed that it is a recent invention of the church. The book demonstrates that the understanding of the death of Christ as a work of penal substitution is the principal waythough not the only wayin which the Bible views the death of Christ, and that far from being a recent teaching, it has been taught at every period in the history of the church. Here is a challenge to a deeper biblical and historical understanding of the atonement, and an encouragement to proclaim and live out the message of the cross with renewed faithfulness and courage.