Anselmus was reconsidered on multiple occasions in the last century to the extent that an expression “Anselmus-Renaissance” was mentioned. His satisfaction theory of the atonement was interpreted and reassessed at multiple
angles by those who tried to abstain from reductive reading. Of them, this study focused on criticisms by Rahner and von Balthasar. In response to a series of modern criticisms about christian soteriology, in particular, about the
satisfaction theory of atonement, both of theologians proposed to reinterpret the christian tradition, restoring its original meanings. They were, at the same time, differentiated from each other as they took different methodological
When the satisfaction theory of the atonement formulated by Anselmus in his Cur Deus homo is reconsidered with the backgrounds of the patristic tradition and its variations during the Middle Ages, it seems to part with the
ideas of Satan’s rights and reduce gradually to the juridical dimension.
Focusing on the active aspect of death as a personal event, Rahner tried to enlighten the totality, historicity, and activity of Christ’s death as action of salvation. According to him, Christ’s death does not identify with whatever
ethical acts but represent the only way of Christ’s death as it is. They embody the total acts of his entire life in the way of active compliance. Von Balthasar began with the analogy of freedom and tried to describe dynamically the possibilities, meanings, and methods of atonement within the tension of theodrama between finite and infinite freedom. In this prospective respecting created freedom Christ’s atonement represents his acts of solidarity with
sinners that transmute radically created beings from its within and undergird them.