My goal is to write articles that go against the flow to pique discussion, offer a different perspective and connect some dots.
In the New Testament of the Christian Bible, it speaks of Jesus being a ‘sacrifice.’ His blood is mentioned often. Unfortunately, he is tied to human sacrifice where he supposedly received the punishment from God for our sins.
Christians will will say that Jesus was their human sacrifice. The shedding of his innocent blood was a means of escaping the punishment for their sins in the same way it fell symbolically on a sacrificial beast. In similar manner, an innocent man would be required to take the brunt of God’s penalty for all of our sins as a human sacrifice. The wrath God would then be would be satisfied for sins past, present and future.
What many fail to understand is that the idea that someone who is innocent who is punished and sacrificed falls more in line with an offering to a pagan god.
Why would a righteous God punish an innocent person for the sins of others?
That would make no sense at all. We have to be careful because if we believe in the punishment theory, our view of God will change to someone who desires the blood of the innocent.
God stated through His anointed ones in Scripture that He desired mercy and obedience, not sacrifice. When we understand what this means, we find out that God is a loving and merciful God who has no desire to punish those that are innocent.
Listen! Obedience is better than sacrifice - 1 Samuel 15:22
God does not reconcile us to Himself through punishment, but through humility, repentance and walking in obedience before Him. We should be understand that dedicating our lives to the one true God is a walk of righteousness before Him.
Most have bought into the punishment theory of human sacrifice upon the faulty premise that God desires punishment for sin.
The terms of the contract or covenant that God made with His people consist both of blessings (rewards) through walking in obedience or curses (consequences) for walking in disobedience. Details of blessings in are in Leviticus 26:3-13, Deuteronomy 11:13-25; 28:1-14. The consequences for disobedience are found in Leviticus 26:14-39 and in Deuteronomy 28:15-68.
There are several verses in the Torah that seems to imply that God desires blood sacrifices and that it was His will (Exodus 29:38). The sacrifice of humans and animals was practiced widely among the heathen nations. Israel too, also practiced animal and human sacrifice before God’s law was implemented upon them. God’s law was not meant to establish sacrifice, but to limit its practice. This is why all sacrifices were forbidden and outlawed with the exception of the ones offered in the Tabernacle or later in the Temple (Deuteronomy 12:5-11). There was also a clear provision in the law against human sacrifice. In this way, God turned bloody and murderous man-made rituals into a symbolic gesture of a different nature.
The history of Israel’s rebellion against God is one of moral depravity where there was unlimited sacrifice with no moral bounds.
Instead, he walked in the way of the kings of Israel and even sacrificed his son in the fire, according to the abominations of the nations whom the LORD had driven out before the Israelites. And he sacrificed and burned incense on the high places, on the hills, and under every green tree. – 2 Kings 16:3-4
They sacrificed their sons and their daughters to demons. They shed innocent blood— the blood of their sons and daughters, whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan, and the land was polluted with blood. – Psalm 106:37-38
These kinds of sacrifices in theses Scripture passages did not appease God in any way. In fact, the message God's prophets was that He did not desire nor did He delight in their sacrifices. Also, sacrifice was never deemed a penalty demanded by God.
“For I did not speak to your fathers, or command them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt offerings and sacrifices. “But this is what I commanded them, saying, ‘Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you will be My people; and you will walk in all the way which I command you, that it may be well with you.’ – Jeremiah 7:22-23
God does not desire sacrifice in this sense, but He desires ‘sacrifice’ to Him based on something totally different. The ‘sacrifice’ that God desires is not about punishment, but it is about loving Him, loving others, being fair, acting merciful and walking in obedience towards Him.
How we perceive ‘sacrifice’ should not be about the shedding of innocent blood as punishment to appease an angry God.
Hath the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. - 1 Samuel 15:22
For You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; You take no pleasure in burnt offerings. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart - Psalm 51:16-17
To do justice and judgment is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice. - Proverbs 21:3
For I desired Mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings. - Hosea 6:6
“Even though you offer up to Me burnt offerings and your grain offerings, I will not accept them; And I will not even look at the peace offerings of your fatlings. “Take away from Me the noise of your songs; I will not even listen to the sound of your harps. “But let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream. - Amos 5:22-24
The ‘sacrifice’ God desires is tied with things like love, mercy, humility and justice. There is no connection with sacrifice and punishment. The killing and the burning of animals were never called a penalty. The altar of God was called the ‘Lord’s Table.’ Israel would offer God a meal for Him to eat being in communion with Him being symbolic of a feast.
Christians will say that Christ was a human sacrifice offered to the the Father for our sins. However, punishment and atonement have no connection. We are reconciled to God through repentance.
How could God punish someone who is innocent and obedient to Him as a human sacrifice?
Is this the character of the one true God according to Scripture?
- God Does Not Want Human Sacrifice
It may come as a surprise that most Christians do not know the words the prophets in the Torah concerning God’s view of sacrifice.
© 2018 PlanksandNails
charlie from From Kingdom of God living on Planet earth in between the oceans on August 11, 2018:
AMEN and again Amen. Great article, too bad the ??churchLeaders?? will convince the truth seekers in their midst to deny it is truth. People it is time to start reading the scriptures with the Holy Spirit of God and listen to what it says not what the false clergy wants you to believe. Time is short and scripture tells us that few will find the narrow gate. It is the ONLY gate to eternal kingdom of God and the only one who can guide you to it is Jesus Christ the son of God.