The Redeemer Symbolism

Christ the Redeemer of the World
Redeemer, defined by Merriam-Webster, means “a person who brings goodness, honor to something again”. In Catholicism this refers to the person who will carry out the last step of God’s ultimate plan: creation, sin, and salvation. We can see God’s creation through scripture in the Book of Genesis. God spent six days creating the universe, earth, animals, land, and humans. Humans were a different creation than the other things God had created. When God created humans, “God created mankind in his image…God blessed them” (Genesis 1:27). No other creations were blessed by God or created in God’s image, making them unique to God’s plan. Next was sin, sin was introduced to mankind by human free will. Sin is the act
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O’Collins’ book Christology, O’Collins points out that divine love must be understood in the biblical stories of salvation. O’Collins provides multiple excerpts from the Bible but one passage from the letter to the Romans is the most compelling. It reads, “But God proves his love for us in that while we were still sinners Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). In order to prove God has divine love for us, we must look to what evidence there is to support that God loves us. Paul, in his letter, explains that despite humans being sinners, and the introduction of sin into mankind from free will, God still sent his only son to earth to die for us, opening the gates of heaven. O’Collins’ conclusion on this passage and other Biblical passages that provide evidence into God’s divine love is, “God’s initiative of love clarifies the story of salvation” (Christology, p.300). O’Collins argues that we cannot understand the story of salvation if we don’t find and appreciate that there is evidence showing that God loves us. If we can understand divine love from God then we can reason why Christ is the redeemer of the world. Christ becoming the redeemer was started by God’s act of divine love, Christ being put on the cross and dying for our sins, something Benedict in Deus caritas est also argues. O’Collins summarizes, “None of these images for the redemptive process can be properly appreciated if we neglect the divine love revealed and at work in Christ” (Christology, p.300). The images we is referring to are the multiple Biblical stories he lists, each one showing how divine love exists in God through Christ. O’Collins argues that we must not neglect this divine love when understanding salvation. If it can be understood that divine love exists in God then, we can accept that God is acting out of love for mankind when he redeems all of his creations through Christ

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