'The essential background to the cross...is a balanced understanding of the gravity of sin and the majesty of God. If we diminish either, we thereby diminish the cross. If we interpret sin as a lapse instead of a rebellion, and God as indulgent instead of indignant, then naturally the cross appears superfluous. But to dethrone God and enthrone ourselves not only dispenses with the cross; it also degrades both God and man. A biblical view of God and ourselves, however, that is, of our sin and God's wrath, honours both. It honours human beings by affirming them as responsible for their own actions. It honours God by affirming him as having moral character.'
John Stott, The Cross of Christ, p.129.