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What Sacrifice?


Rachelness
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I'm sure this question has been asked and addressed numerous times throughout the history of ex-Christian.net, but I want to give our current in-house Christians a chance to explain and defend their position and in the process I hope learn more about their beliefs from them.

 

We've all - Christian, ex-Christian, lifelong atheist - heard the renowned/notorious mantra "Jesus died for YOU". It's moving. It's provocative. It's beautiful. But what does it actually mean?

 

To die for somebody is the ultimate sacrifice. To end your existence: no more laughter, sex, chocolate, so that somebody else can continue theirs. To give up everything, including your life, for somebody else.

 

But what does "life" mean to the creator of it? What does life on Earth mean to a "man" who is spending His eternity in heaven? Who needs "life" when death is THAT good?

 

So I ask, where is the sacrifice? What did Jesus REALLY give up for me, you, and the rest of humanity? A "life" that wasn't as good as His death?

 

I'm genuinely interested in what Christians have to say regarding Jesus's sacrifice. Everyone else is welcome to add their commentary too. I'm not really here to debate. I'm here to learn.

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I'm not a christian, but I thought I would take a stab at it.

 

Jesus was humiliated, beaten, tortured, and spent eleven days on a cross bleeding to death for his beliefs and for the beliefs of his people to prove to them that God is there for them. Death isn't an easy thing to go through, even if you're a god yourself. Gods still feel pain.

 

He didn't HAVE to go through any of that. He knew it was going to happen, but he knew he had to go through with it as it was planned in order to make it possible for people to attone for their own sins, and not have to rely on the greedy priests anymore to do it for them. That, and to solidfy once and for all what he preached was true.

 

I'd consider that a sacrifice. Even if he did come back a few days later.

 

(Emphasizing once again I am NOT a christian and don't believe anything I just said either, so no killing the Devil's Advocate. :) But feel free to tear all that to shreds. )

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ehr... he spent like 6 hours on the cross... At any rate, it's not so much about the sacrifice as what it did for us. It relieved us of the burden of our sins, so that we may enter heaven and be with our father and creator.

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What about all of the people before Jesus? Scripture says they were forgiven by God for burning animals because the aroma was soothing to Him. So, if that worked, then there is, or at least was, a different path to heaven.

 

Now that I no longer believe, the whole notion of a man dying for our sins sounds more and more ridiculous.

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To die for somebody is the ultimate sacrifice.

 

To require anyone to die for you is the ultimate evil.

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My people are going ape balls down there - sinning and shitting on my divine law. I need to find a way to absolve them of their sins. What to do? I know, I'll send myself down so that they can kill me, that'll make me feel better... :phew:

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There are the resurrection threads in one of the other forums that talk about this (well, Amy Marie just whines a lot but some good stuff is in there too as I recall).

 

Other than that though, a sacrifice is when you give up something forever. Jesus (keeping in mind I believe jesus is a myth) gave up nothing forever. There was no sacrifice in the true sense of the word. There was no substitution or anything like that. If he took our sins and our punishment in our place then he should have died, gone to hell (hades, gehenna, wherever) and stayed there like we will. He should not have come back, got a new body and went not only to heaven but to sit on the right hand of the father (a place of prominence) and to be judge over others. His actions should have also simply removed the whole concept of sin from the face of the earth from that point on. It did not.

 

It added another layer of complexity that did not needed to be added. It added a system of punishment that was beyond torture. It took away free will and replaced it with coercion. It took away personal responsibility, replaced it with dependency and unrealistic expectations.

 

A simple spoken word of forgiveness, nothing more than what is expected of us for our fellow man, is all that is required of god and everything would be as it should be. There is no need for a sacrifice of any kind for any reason.

 

Ultimately, it was an empty gesture.

 

mwc

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All though we can say there was no real sacrifice made, I always looked at it this way...

 

Let's assume Jesus was like a son to God. So putting it into human perspective, let's say I am God and I have a son. And I find that the only way to reach humanity is to send my son down to earth, to be tortured and murdered by humans. Being a loving father it would be a horrific thing to have to do, even knowing that in the end you would get your son back and he would be fine. I know I could never do that to my son.

 

That's the only way I could rationalise it. But even then you have to overlook the assumption that Jesus is actually part of God, or was God incarnate, in which case he was putting himself down there instead. Damn, it's all to ruddy confusing. I could never really get to grips with it.

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Assuming for a moment that the whole story were actually true, Jesus isn't the one who really made the sacrifice. If it all had gone down just as the Bible claims, we should all be praying to Judas. Jesus died, spent a few days in Hell, and then gets to spend the rest of eternity in Heaven, being worshipped. The crucifixion wouldn't have happened had be not been betrayed by Judas, who is supposedly now spending eternity in Hell. Given that it was all planned out ahead of time, Judas didn't really have a choice about betraying Jesus or not, because if he hadn't, the whole scheme would have been moot. So really, you want to talk about sacrifice, Judas is the guy we should be thanking if the death of Jesus really did make it possible for us mere mortals to get to Heaven.

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Jesus life wasn't that bad except for a day or two. Sure there was the whole 40 days in the wilderness thing, but it's not like he spent his entire life suffering for the sins of mankind. It was just a few hours. By the time he's 12, the son of god thing seems to have gone to his head. What an arrogant SOB! His mother seaches all over for him because she can't find him and does he say "Thanks" or "I'm sorry", NO! Who the hell talks to their mother like that?

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I shall repeat myself again.....

 

*ahem*

 

 

Dying by SCAPHISMUS is a sacrifice.

 

If a divine being is going to divide himself to experience tha agony of human death in order to atone or pay a debt for sin, then very BASIC logic follows that such a being would therefore die in the WORST WAY IMAGINABLE!!!

 

Crucifixion is NOT the most painful, or longest torturous method of legal execution. Scaphismus is.

 

BEWARE YOUR LUNCH!!

Desciption isn't pretty:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scaphismus

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I shall repeat myself again.....

 

*ahem*

 

 

Dying by SCAPHISMUS is a sacrifice.

 

If a divine being is going to divide himself to experience tha agony of human death in order to atone or pay a debt for sin, then very BASIC logic follows that such a being would therefore die in the WORST WAY IMAGINABLE!!!

 

Crucifixion is NOT the most painful, or longest torturous method of legal execution. Scaphismus is.

 

BEWARE YOUR LUNCH!!

Desciption isn't pretty:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scaphismus

 

What is most disturbing to me after reading that is how sick, demented, and deranged the person or group was that throught that execution up.

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I'm of the opion that a divine being might ENJOY...yes...ENJOY the sensations of being alive and even the sensations of pain and death. After all, this was his way to actually experience something perhaps....new.

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2.) "Although being in the form of God He did not consider equality with God a thing to be grasped but He emptied Himself and became a man, taking on the form of a slave." (Phillipians 2) A person cannot appreciate what Jesus did if they first don't recognize what He gave up when he became a man. He came to experience the pain and tempations of men. He came to experience what we feel. What it's like to go without food, to suffer cold, to hunger and thirst, to love, to suffer lose, to be misunderstood, mocked..."A man of sorrows, acquainted with grief." He came to experienece the exact opposite of Heaven.

 

 

And he still managed to become a complete asshole. Starkly astounding!

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The crux of rachelness' question is what did Jesus give up? Yes and not just Jesus but the Father and Holy spirit worked together in the plan of our redemption. "for God was in Christ reconciling man to God." The sacrifice was a Trinitarian event.

...

 

 

Why did Jesus need to die to reconcile our sins with God (no, I did not just answer my own question)?

Why did God require the sacrifice of his son to forgive people's sin?

Couldn't God just...forgive people's sin when they prayed to him?

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The crux of rachelness' question is what did Jesus give up? Yes and not just Jesus but the Father and Holy spirit worked together in the plan of our redemption. "for God was in Christ reconciling man to God." The sacrifice was a Trinitarian event.

 

!.) Consider where Jesus was before He came to live among us. He lived in Heaven. A place of perfect peace, beauty, bliss, no sickness, darkness, pain...There He lived completely loved in union with the Father.

2.) "Although being in the form of God He did not consider equality with God a thing to be grasped but He emptied Himself and became a man, taking on the form of a slave." (Phillipians 2) A person cannot appreciate what Jesus did if they first don't recognize what He gave up when he became a man. He came to experience the pain and tempations of men. He came to experience what we feel. What it's like to go without food, to suffer cold, to hunger and thirst, to love, to suffer lose, to be misunderstood, mocked..."A man of sorrows, acquainted with grief." He came to experienece the exact opposite of Heaven.

 

Big fat, hairy deal. IF he spent 33 years out of eternity living as a human being, subject to all our frailities and suffering, that implies that it's us mortals who live that life everyday from birth to death who really got the shitty deal and ought to be considered the heroes. After all, we cope with mortal life without the super powers that Jesus supposedly had to multiply the loaves and fishes and heal people (when he was in the mood) and such. And, BTW, since, according to your babble, he retained his god-powers during his time on earth, he really didn't give up much and he certainly didn't become a normal man.

 

3.) On the flip side of suffering Jesus lived life to the full and was critized for it. He was called a glutton and and drunkard, a friend of sinners etc. The proof that He enjoyed life is when the time came for His death He really struggled. It wasn't easy just like it wouldn't be easy for any of us.

 

I agree with your assessment that it wouldn't be easy for any of us. Since all human beings face death, and since some have painful deaths, I fail to see why Jesus's was more spectacular than any other -- especially since he knew he'd be returning to heaven to sit on the right side of god.

 

4.) A lot of people here have argued about the physical suffering of Christ and have complianed that His suffering is little in comparison to what others have suffered physically. What people fail to take into consideration is His spiritual suffering, mental and emotional suffering. He bore in His body our pains and sicknesses. He bore our sins. He bore the fact that even after He had given His life many people would still misunderstand Him, misrepresent Him, hate Him. What did He give up? The protection of Heaven. "He was marred more than any man. He was bruised beyond recognition." Well, there are people that were marred more than Jesus. Jesus was marred exceedingly more than others because He was wounded outwardly and internally with our sins.

 

"He bore in His body our pains and sicknesses. He bore our sins." I don't even know what you mean here. If he bore our pains and sicknesses, why is pain and sickness still a part of all human life? Why are fundies still preaching against what they call "sin"? Shouldn't he have taken all this away? I guess that was a wasted sacrifice!

 

5.) Some say if He really gave something up He should have stayed in hell. What kind of victory would that have been? What proof that there is hope in the midst of suffering? "In this world you shall have tribulation but fear not! I have overcome the world." His resurrection means there's light at the end of the tunnel. To stay dead or to stay in hell would mean Satan is the triumphant one. Do you really like that ending?

 

Satan wasn't the one who invented hell. So, yes, if jesus, who is supposedly really god (or one-third of god or whatever) wanted to be a nice guy, he could have stayed in the hell that he created in place of us so that his sacrifice would really have had some effect. Better yet, he could have destoyed sin and hell all together. Gods can do these kinds of things, you know, if they want to.

 

"Greater love has no man than this, that a man would lay down his life for his friends." Jesus gave up everything, His clothing, for He was crucified naked on the cross, His blood, even His life.

 

????? Yeah, I remember that part about the Roman soldiers gambling to see who'd get his cloak (or was that just in a movie?), but I think he at least kept on his loincloth. I suspect you might be letting your imagination run wild here. Wouldn't be the first time.

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Just yesterday I was driving in a commercial district and saw a guy walking down the street wearing a sign that said "The blood of Jesus cleanses of all sin" or something. I just shook my head. I wanted to get out and yell at him "Hey! What kind of a sick, barbaric god do you worship, that he requires a blood sacrifice to atone for sin??!! Quit pushing your filthy monstrous blood-cult on the rest of us you sicko!"

 

But I just drove past and shook my head.

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I've also yet to hear any hog butcherers say they felt particularly clean and fresh after being covered in blood. For some reason, they usually take a water shower afterwards.

 

Perhaps it's human blood that has these mysterious cleansing properties? :scratch:

 

I've had my own blood on me....didn't feel clean, felt sticky. Perhaps I'm supposed to rub my sticky blood on someone else? :scratch:

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http://www.ex-christian.net/index.php?show...mp;#entry200255

Dear Everyone:

 

I have decided to leave ex-christian forums. I want to depart on a positive note and not exchanging angry words in a debate. I'll be back a few times to look around but I won't be posting. I wish you all the best.

 

Amy

So much for leaving the forums and not posting. Amy has been all over that Mel Gibson thread, and now she's back in the Lion's Den. I'm strongly considering using "Amy Marie" in place of "liar" in my lexicon. :wicked:

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Child sacrifece is something everyone considers heinous, but isn't that exactly what god did?

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Crucifixion is NOT the most painful, or longest torturous method of legal execution. Scaphismus is.

 

BEWARE YOUR LUNCH!!

Desciption isn't pretty:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scaphismus

 

 

:woopsie:

 

Oh God, where are my teddy bears

 

I can't sleep alone tonight

 

:ouch:

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Amy,

 

For someone who isn't going to post here anymore, you sure post a lot! Did you enjoy all of our goodbyes?

 

Nice artwork this time though. I've often had that fantasy myself. Is that you in front of me?

 

Oh, and your answer was lacking. Sorry, it just was. Jesus came here willingly, right? He created 'here', didn't He? He knew what He was getting into and even told how that after He would be 'at the right hand of glory' didn't He?

 

OK Amy, I love you, so I'll get my fat ass off the couch, go to the kitchen, and even though I know I'll miss four minutes of the movie we're watching, I'll microwave you some popcorn. I'm willing to leave my place of comfort and do that for you. And in return for my sacrafice, I expect you to obey me and stick up for me forever.

 

As for your 'greater love' verse...have you ever seen war? Jesus' little adventure on the cross was small potatoes, woman. He created the tree that He would hang on. How sweet this sounds in Christian circles. But how many people die every day, covered with blood, sweat and tears somewhere in this world that never had any chance to create anything, and have NO chance of popping up in front of their mourners a few days later...

 

"Watch it!", Jesus said to her, "Don't cling to me! Don't touch me at all! I haven't seen Dad yet, silly!You'll read later in the Gospel of John that I left my clothes folded neatly in the tomb. That explains why I'm still naked. I know that you think I was humiliated by going to my death that way, but now I am alive again, and go to the right hand of your God...and my God, and I'm still naked!"

 

 

And forty days later, Jesus leads them to the mountain, and in front of their eyes ascends into the sky until the clouds recieve Him. Mary never touched Him, but by the Lord's own invitation, Thomas did.

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explains why I'm still naked. I know that you think I was humiliated by going to my death that way, but now I am alive again, and go to the right hand of your God...and my God, and I'm still naked!"

You know, it never dawned on me until just now that Mary never seemed phased by a naked grounds keeper. Thirty years go by and I've always pictured him with clothes on but now all I can see is naked jesus with his junk hanging out (thanks a lot). :lmao: How's that for brainwashing? I wonder if anyone ever gave him a towel or if he just wandered around like that until he drifted away?

 

mwc

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mwc,

 

You know, I never thought of Jesus as naked either, till now. What would Gods' junk look like????!!??

 

:lmao:

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mwc,

 

You know, I never thought of Jesus as naked either, till now. What would Gods' junk look like????!!??

 

:lmao:

 

Careful. You may give Amy Marie inspiration for her next piece of ass.....oops...I meant art! :phew:

 

Can't imagine how I could make that mistake. :HaHa:

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