It can be said that in God's eyes, Christians are only dirty glasses which are stained inside and out with their own sin. These glasses were once clean, not plagued with stains. Now the glasses bear with them these ugly stains, the stains of sin and wrongdoing. The dirty glasses had to accept their punishment for becoming dirty, and the punishment was being destroyed by a hammer. The hammer is God's instrument against sinners. As the hammer made its decent on the glass, a pan covered the glass and took the blow of the hammer to save the glass. This pan represents Jesus because Jesus sacrificed himself to God so that God would forgive us for our sins.
Atonement is the action of putting things right between us and God. This story illustrates a very simplified version of one Atonement theory. Jesus, the "Pan," accomplished Atonement by sacrificing himself for mercy and forgiveness. He died for us so God would forgive our sins.
The Atonement theories themselves are different explanations to help interpret what God actually did to save us. In each of the four Atonement theories Jesus is the bridge that connects humanity and God and helps us connect to each other. We have multiple Atonement theories because there is no single, simple answer to solve the many questions of Jesus' death. One theory doesn't provide enough information and doesn't cover everything that needs to be said. Each Atonement theory is acceptable because there are multiple answers within them and all are correct. Since there are so many different answers they give, they tend to overlap and sometimes run into each other but they do this to cover every aspect and question that is presented in the theories.
Since there are multiple Atonement theories, all Christians are going to have different opinions on which theory best fits Jesus' accomplishments. The personal opinion on the Atonement theories depends on how Christians look at Christianity and which model they think contributed more...
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