Talk:Substitutionary atonement

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search


Isn't Hugo Grotius associated more with the Governmental theory of the atonement? --Victoria h 05:07, 14 February 2006 (UTC)

Yes, but this is a form of substitutionary atonement. KHM03 11:44, 14 February 2006 (UTC)

This page is overly simplistic. It assumes that all Christians hold the substitutionary view of the atonement. The entire Eastern Church (both Eastern Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox) denies this view. Additionally, it is inappropriate to assert that the Epistle to the Romans "explains" the substitutionary atonement without giving any evidence that it even teaches it. Saying the Christ died "for" us is not the same as saying that Christ died "as" us (or "in our place").

Added statements by Church Fathers relating to Substitutionary Atonement[edit]

Hello, I wanted to provide some record of the less developed doctrine of Substitution found in the Early Church. I hope others will be willing to let it stay, although I would certainly appreciate anyone editing the rather sloppy aspects of the addition. Also, feel free to let me know if I have violated any rules in making the addition as I did. Thanks. Wascott

edit-I have removed the addition for the moment --especially because I need a better way for providing the links.


This article is unclear as to the relation of this theory to the Atonement (Satisfaction view) theory.

Removed first paragraph[edit]

The first paragraph was written in non-encyclopedic style and possibly not NPOV, and inappropriate as an introduction. It defined substitutionary atonement as a general principle rather than as a specifically Christian doctrine. But through Google I was unable to find any significant use of the term in any context other than Christian theology. So the correct introduction in my opinion is to state the SA is a Christian theological doctrine. The content that was in the first paragraph might be reuseable later in the body text if rewritten. Mrhsj 00:57, 1 December 2006 (UTC)

Distinguish between Penal Substitution and Substitutionary Atonement[edit]

This page needs to distinguish between Penal Substitution and Substitutionary Atonement. The term "Substitutionary Atonement" covers any view of the atonement which includes the idea of Jesus standing as a substitute for part or all of mankind. Such substitution is not necessarily penal (Jesus takes the punishment man deserves) but could also be merely satisfactory (Jesus satisfies the demands of God's honour by suffering obediently - see Atonement (Satisfaction view)).

Since this page describes the specifically penal view of substitutionary atonement, I propose that it should be moved to the Penal substitution page which currently links here, and a shorter article should be written which links to the different forms of substitutionary atonement. 07:55, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

I agree. Currently the page is quite confusing. The article reads as if "penal substitution theory" = "substitution theory", which it doesn't. "Substitutionary atonement" is the hypernym for the hyponyms "penal substitutionary atonement", "satisfaction atonement" and any other atonement model that views Jesus as a substitute in some way (this includes the early model called the "ransom theory", which often views Jesus as dying in the places of others but is not penal). The info about penal substitution should be moved to the penal substitution thread, and this article should be about substitutionary theories in general (with links to the appropriate articles). --Woofboy (talk) 20:48, 30 December 2010 (UTC)
I've edited the opening and moved some relevant parts to the main article on atonement. --Woofboy (talk) 23:48, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

page is original resarch[edit]

While the research is interesting here, it is original which is against Wiki policy. It is also rather flawed. While it is true that there are elements of punishment in the atonement theories of the Church Fathers, these quotes are taken out of the larger context of their teaching. Augustine did not teach penal substitution, but what is called the "mousetrap" theory which is a version of the ransom theory. Similarly Athanasius focused on the cross overcoming death, not on penal substitution. Taken out of context, these quotes are quite miss leading and historically inaccurate. They ignore the larger teaching and amount to cherry picking. One could argue that there are aspects of punishment found in earlier writings, but it is simply false to claim that penal substitution was taught by any of the church fathers. I move that they be stricken and replaced with a historical account of the development of the doctrine based on verifiable sources. sharktacos 22:26, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

Near as I can tell, it's substantially not actually original research, it's based on a forthcoming book, Pierced for our transgressions. You are right, though, that it shouldn't be stated as fact, according to WP:NPOV, as it's debated, but neither should your beliefs about the history of this matter - which I believe are flawed (and, more to the point, relevant published literature argues is flawed.) TJ 00:02, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
Fair enough. Then the statements should be given with sources to the book, and put alongside of the counter arguments which have a great deal of published literature as well. Since the book is not available in the US I have not read it, but I honestly have a hard time imagining that anyone could seriously claim that Athanasius, Augustine, and Aquinas taught penal substitution. That their respective understandings of the atonement contained elements of Christ taking our punishment, yes. That they therefore taught the specifically Reform doctrine of Penal Substitution, no. Sharktacos 05:10, 24 March 2007 (UTC)


Does anyone know where I can go to read about not what supposedly took place but how it supposedly works? I don't see anything like that on this page. What I mean is, this page goes through a great deal about what people believe Jesus's death did, but what I'm looking for is, how it is that Jesus's death can cause people to be absolved of thier sins. I don't know if this is the right place to ask this sort of question, but it would be very helpful to my research.

Kronos o 21:37, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

Orthodox disagreement with the West[edit]

The statement, in the article, that "The doctrine is not accepted by the Eastern Orthodox churches, who normatively teach John Cassian's doctrine of theosis." is not supported by any references and, in fact, it is not correct. The doctrine of substitutionary atonement is both assumed and alluded to, multiple times, in the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, and is clearly proclaimed, multiple times, in the Bible.

As a secondary observation, the doctrine of theosis did not originate with John Cassian, but can be found in the writings of Athanasius of Alexandria among others, and is derived from statements in the New Testament (e.g. 2 Peter 1:4, 1 John 3:2). Additionally, there is nothing in tbe doctrine of theosis which is contradictory to, or in any way incompatible with, the Orthodox doctrine of substitutionary atonement as taught by St. John Chrysostom, St. Athanasius of Alexandria, St. John of Damascus, and St. Symeon the New Theologian, among many others.

Vizenos (talk) 16:33, 22 May 2009 (UTC)

Since it has no reference anyway, please feel free to correct it, but please add references for your own assertions. Thanks. History2007 (talk) 16:59, 22 May 2009 (UTC)


It's not all that clear, but some of the more modern theologians might have deemed the doctrine of substitutionary atonement to be a tad anti-semitic, since there is a strong emphasis on sacrifice and expiation, a vocabulary that eventually found its way into the language of anti-semites, who demanded retribution for the alleged crimes of the Jews. ADM (talk) 13:49, 4 April 2009 (UTC)

If it is not clear, it should be left on this talk page, and not in the article. Even then, if it is not clear, or certain, might as well ignore it for Wikipedia needs certainty given that there are so many pages in need of repair at the moment. On that note you introduced the term sensus Ecclesiae into the page on sensus fidelium, and that term needs a page, but I can not find a good reference. Would you like to build that page? Or provide a few refs so I can build it? Thanks History2007 (talk) 13:54, 4 April 2009 (UTC)

Article title[edit]

History2007 made a request on my talk page to move-protect this article. I'm not comfortable doing that without consensus that this is the correct title. Since the article has been moved a few times [1], consensus is unclear. What should the title to the article be?--Chaser (talk) 15:04, 25 August 2010 (UTC)

I think stability as important as the title. The musical title game has been played enough here and the other related articles. I don't remember doing a move myself (probably never did) but I have seen it happen a few times. I think the names of the related articles need to be stabilized too. History2007 (talk) 15:48, 25 August 2010 (UTC)
If you're talking about other atonement articles, probably a discussion at Talk:Atonement and notice to some or all of the Wikiprojects listed at Talk:Atonement_in_Christianity is in order.--Chaser (talk) 00:59, 27 August 2010 (UTC)
Actually it seems that user srnc moved Atonement (ransom view) and Atonement (satisfaction view) as well, without changing the dab page, and without providing any explanation (or atonement thereafter) for said moves - pun intended. I left a message at the Atonement_in_Christianity page anyway. But the situation is messy now, and needs to be cleaned up, then frozen. History2007 (talk) 01:14, 27 August 2010 (UTC)

East and West.[edit]

From what I can tell, Western Christians seem to be in eternal need of "proving" that the Orthodox Church teaches the same thing as they do by misquoting the Divine Liturgy, the Bible, or the opinions of Orthodox fathers or clerics, the last frequently being interpreted with western definitions, in order to legitimize their own beliefs. On the other hand, Orthodoxy tries to emphasize that both systems are radically different. Yes, there are similarities in doctrine between east and west, they originate from the same first thousand years, but the Orthodox are wisely more cautious. Just because something looks similar doesn't mean it is the same. We use similar words, but these words might have different meanings, some not as literal, others more so. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:21, 28 July 2011 (UTC)

Assessment comment[edit]

The comment(s) below were originally left at Talk:Substitutionary atonement/Comments, and are posted here for posterity. Following several discussions in past years, these subpages are now deprecated. The comments may be irrelevant or outdated; if so, please feel free to remove this section.

Last edited at 07:54, 8 March 2008 (UTC). Substituted at 07:13, 30 April 2016 (UTC)