Atoning

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Dictionary Meaning and Definition on 'Atoning'

Atoning Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Atone \A*tone"\ ([.a]*t[=o]n"), v. i. [imp. & p. p. Atoned; p. pr. & vb. n. Atoning.] [From at one,, i. e., to be, or cause to be, at one. See At one.]
  1. To agree; to be in accordance; to accord. [Obs.] He and Aufidius can no more atone Than violentest contrariety. --Shak.
  2. To stand as an equivalent; to make reparation, compensation, or amends, for an offense or a crime. The murderer fell, and blood atoned for blood. --Pope. The ministry not atoning for their former conduct by any wise or popular measure. --Junius.

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Wikipedia Meaning and Definition on 'Atoning'


Atonement is a doctrine that describes how human beings can be reconciled to God. which made possible the reconciliation between God and creation. Within Christianity there are three main theories for how such atonement might work: the ransom theory, the satisfaction theory and the moral influence theory.

The English word 'atonement' originally meant "at-one-ment", i.e. being "at one", in harmony, with someone.

Christians have used three different metaphors to understand how the atonement might work.

The first metaphor, epitomised by the "ransom to Satan" theory, was used by the fourth-century theologian Gregory of Nyssa based on verses such as Mark 10:45 – "the Son of Man came … to give his life as a ransom for the many". In this metaphor Jesus liberates mankind from slavery to Satan and thus death by giving his own life as a ransom. Victory over Satan consists of swapping the life of the perfect (Jesus), for the lives of the imperfect (mankind). A variation of this view is known as the "Christus Victor" theory, and sees Jesus not used as a ransom but rather defeating Satan in a spiritual battle and thus freeing enslaved mankind by defeating the captor.

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