"Propitiation" by Bob Donohue
Text: Romans 3:21-25
A hurricane is coming that will make any earthly hurricane look like a gentle Spring rain. Can you see the sky? It’s been revealed. It will be world wide, and will even reach back into history. It will not be downgraded to a tropical storm.
The tower in Siloam, Luke 13:4-5 — “Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”
There is a tower with your name on it. A storm is coming your way.
But there is a way out. There is a glorious escape. It is summarized in a single word, “propitiation”.
Grace really is love.
Righteousness is not just a cleared relationship, but a wanted relationship. God loved us by making us righteous, and righteousness is a condition of being wanted.
We are justified by grace through the gift of God’s Son “whom God put forward as a propitiation.”
Propitiation = to make favorable; also, to appease, as in God’s wrath. In pagan religion, people would try to placate hostile dieties with human sacrifice, such as a child thrown into a volcano…
[D.A. Carson quote]
…but in v.25, God “put forward [Himself]” to meet His demands. He is both parties. He is the giver and the receiver. His requirements are so great that only He can meet them.
Bloodshed exists to keep us alive, for example, of animals for covering and food, or of executing murderers to preserve the lives of others.
Isn’t it glorifying of Him that He would direct His wrath against Himself? And also that He would even allow for such a substitution to be possible?
A hurricane settled over Jesus.
The storm of God on Mt. Sinai, which produced the Law that caused condemnation, was resolved by the storm on Mt. Calvary.
God’s wrath turned from us to His Son, and His love turned from His Son to us.