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Chalke Talk 38: The Cross and the Pain of Loss

When we remember Jesus’ words, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” we usually immediately think of the fact the Jesus was punished on the cross for our sins.  Images of the "father turning his face away" or God’s wrath being satisfied in one of the most painful forms of execution are all too common.  But, in this week’s episode of Chalke Talk, Steve encourages everyone to avoid these kinds of conclusions.

Chalke Talk 35 - Christianity is not a personal rescue plan

The doctrine of Penal Substitution, which influences many popular worship songs and evangelistic ‘packages’ risks reducing the life, ministry and teachings of Jesus to a ‘long weekend.’

According to a high profile Christian leader, the wonder of Jesus’ life, the truth of his teachings and even the liberation of his resurrection risk being dismissed as peripheral to the crucifixion.

Chalke Talk 34 - Misunderstanding the Cross has made Church ‘angry’ and ‘judgemental’

“What we believe about the Cross really matters,” says Steve in this week’s Chalke Talk.  “If the church believes that God’s first response to humanity is one of anger at sin, and then views itself as God’s mouthpiece; our underlying lack of respect and love for those who don’t share our faith will leak out – however much we try to disguise it.”

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Chalke Talk 33 - Traditional view of the cross "cheapens God's forgiveness"

This week Steve deals with one of the biggest contradictions in modern day theology: “If, as the songs and sermons teach us, God demanded a blood sacrifice and that he was unwilling or unable to extend forgiveness to us without it, then God himself is unwilling to follow the teachings of Jesus – which all becomes a case of ‘do as I say, not as God does.’”

Chalke Talk 31 - Holiness means engaging, not withdrawing

Last week Steve looked at the story of the Israelites exodus from captivity in Egypt, and the series of mysteries and confusing messages Moses was subjected to – from a burning bush, to striking a rock for water. Wrapped up in that is a huge implication for how we understand our relationship with God; it’s not about waiting for some divine revelation but instead choosing to actively follow. That’s where God meets us – in our willingness to engage.