Excerpt from Introduction: "My project will provide a survey of traditional atonement metaphors, with a particular emphasis upon contrasting penal substitution with a covenantal relational understanding of the atonement, and will then posit that a covenantal relational approach is ideal for resonance with a postmodern audience.
I will seek to determine whether any single biblical metaphor or cluster of metaphors provides an interpretive matrix for all discussion of the atonement in a way that is both biblically faithful and conceptually accessible to a postmodern world. I contend that atonement discussions in typical evangelical contexts may be both biblically insufficient and culturally inadequate and that alternatives exist which address both issues. I believe it possible to engage with atonement theology in a metaphoric landscape that resonates with the postmodern experience of life and scripture as the reader encounters it. This engagement will enable the reader to be better able to access the transformative power of the atonement in his or her life."
Sherwood, Steve, "Atonement in Hosea and the Prodigal Son: Relationality as Personhood and the Being of God" (2008). Faculty Publications - College of Christian Studies. 300.