By Viola Larson, Naming His Grace.
In the Presbyterian Women’s Bible study, Who is Jesus? What a difference a Lens Makes, in lesson five, “According to Paul,” the focus is on Paul’s theme of a crucified and risen Jesus. Yes, the cross and the resurrection are two of Paul’s important themes. As author Judy Yates Siker states “Paul’s lens, first and foremost, is the cross, and that resulting portrait is not focused on the life and teachings of the Jesus of the Gospels but rather is focused on the risen Christ.”
Toward the end of the lesson Siker writes:
“From Paul’s perspective the cross is at the heart of the Gospel message, for it reveals a God who embraces humanity in all of its sinfulness and redeems humanity through the power of Jesus’ death and resurrection. The cross reveals a God who so identifies with human suffering and the pain of humanity’s own inhumanity that, in Jesus, this God takes on the power of sin and the power of death, and transforms it all into life abundant (Rom.5-6)”
Siker goes on to quote Romans 5:6-8, a beautiful picture of God’s redeeming love. I applaud her words in this section on page 55 of the lesson.
However, even in this lesson Siker continues to split apart the New Testament’s views of who Jesus is.