Wow, some of the terms and words we run into as we journey through the book of Romans.
Two key terms that elaborate the meaning of atonement for sin(s).
Expiation is the process by which sins are nullified or covered.
Propitiation involves the satisfaction of an offended party, in this case, God.
Sin evokes God’s wrath because God is holy. Gods wrath is his eternal and complete opposition to evil and sin. Sin cannot be expiated or covered until a prior issue is addressed. Because God is just, he punishes sin. God is also compassionate, loving those who sin. Jesus’ atonement for sin, His bearing the just punishment for human sin, makes it possible for God to be “righteous and declare righteous” those who sin but who have faith in Jesus Christ. (Romans 3:26)
Expiation emphasizes the removal of guilt through a payment of the penalty, while propitiation emphasizes the appeasement or averting of God’s wrath and justice.