Continuing in Bishop Willimon’s recent book, Who Will Be Saved?…
One of the continuing themes of the book is interest in, commitment to, and wonder at two Latin words, pro nobis (beginning on page 7), which mean “for us”:
It’s the Nicene Creed that states explicitly that all Christ did and said, including his death and rising, was done “pro nobis”–“for us and for our salvation.” “Who for us men and our salvation came down from heaven,” is how the Nicene Creed characterizes Christ, the Incarnation. To be near us, Christ had to come down to us. There is distance between us and God. We are not with God in heaven, much less are we gods who dwell in the vicinity of deity. Even though we were created by God, in the imae of God, God must risk opposition, overcome something, go somewhere in order to come near to us sinners, in order to replenish, restore, and resurrect God’s intended image in us. In salvation, God comes, becomes Immanuel, and fully embraces what the human can be. “God with us” is yet another way of thinking about salvation. (pp. 7-8)
Pro nobis; for us. The better I get to know myself and my fellow humans, for as wonderful as we can be, our corruption makes God’s pro nobis in Jesus remarkable grace.