Spurgeon makes this apt comment on exemplary theories of the atonement. These were common in his day and are becoming common again in our own day.
‘Oh the number of books that have been written to prove that the Cross means an example of self-sacrifice, as if every martyrdom did not mean that! They cannot endure a real substitutionary Sacrifice for human guilt and an effectual purifying of sin by the death of the great Substitute. Yet the Cross means that or nothing!’
-From The Cross our Glory– preached 1882