At-one-ment

Verlyn Verbrugge

READ : Romans 3:25-31

. . . [Jesus Christ] whom God put forward as a sacrifice of atonement by his blood. (v. 25)

I remember reading the definition years ago: “The doctrine of atonement is the teaching of our at-one-ment with God.” That’s a cute way to remember the word, I thought, but it hardly explains the origin of the word, probably from some obscure Latin or German root.

Until I looked it up recently in a dictionary! The verb atone, first used in the late 1500s, actually comes from the two English words, “at + one.” We no longer pronounce it that way, but that’s what it means.

What an incredible idea! We as sinful human beings, with dirt on our faces, can become one heart and soul with God. Of course, it is not through our own efforts that this occurs, for each day we hurt God more by every sin we commit. At-one-ment only comes because of the marvelous sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross.

In the Old Testament, the Day of Atonement cleansed the Israelite nation of sin for one more year through the blood of sacrificed goats and bulls. We are cleansed for all time through the precious blood of Jesus, whom God puts forward to be received by faith.

Hallelujah! What a Savior! Have you put your trust in him?

PRAYER

Thank you, dear Jesus, for offering your blood so that I can become one with God. Amen.