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What is the sacrifice?

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  • What is the sacrifice?

    I've noticed that there are a lot of people who are knowledgeable about God and the Bible that post here. So I'm hoping you can help answer something that's been bugging me for a while.

    With the Easter holiday approaching, I keep hearing pastors preach about how God sacrificed his Son for our sins. How He allowed Him to die for us. They preach, "what man on earth would sacrifice a child to save someone else?"

    Now, mind you I am a believer, but sometimes my mind comes up with these inconsistencies that I can't seem to solve or let go. And they challenge my faith. So, maybe someone out there can help me understand. My question is, "What was the sacrifice?" If Jesus was with God for eternity before he ever came to earth, and then he went back to heaven "seated at the right hand of God" after he was crucified. Then what is three days in the face of eternity? God, being who He is--knowing all--knew that Jesus would end up in heaven after the mortal part of him died. So, how can we compare that with a man on earth sacrificing a child. Being man, we don't know for sure what is on the other side of death. We only have our faith to say we would see our child again.

    Now I've heard and understand the idea that God being completely holy and untouched by sin humbled himself to come to our sinful earth and die for us. I see how that could be a sacrifice, but I still have a hard time reconciling three days in the face of eternity. Does anyone know the answer?

  • #2
    The Israelite sacrificial system contained five main sacrifices; the burnt offering, the meal offering,the peace offering, the sin offering and the guilt offering. The sacrifice might range in value from a bull to a pair of turtledoves, depending on the economic status of the worshipper. The reader who wishes to delve further into this subject should read carefully Lev 1-9.

    When Jesus offered himself in sacrifice for the sins of mankind, there was no further need for the sacrificial system of Judaism.
    Read Heb.9:24-25,on 26- For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.

    Key words " put away sin"

    The doctrine of resurrection is of central importance in the New Testament. At the heart of early Christian preaching lay the proclamation of Jesus' bodily resurrection from the dead on the third day after the crucifixion. This was viewed as an integral part of Gods' program for the redemtion of mankind.

    Jesus may properly be spoken of as the Redeemer inasmuch as he has done for man what man could not do for himself by giving his life as a ransom for many, he has released those who obey him from the guilt and power of sin. Those who were formerly slaves have been purchased by the blood of Christ and are now sons of God.

    So Lorelei, are you worth his sacrifice?



    • #3

      The issue of JESUS' SACRIFICE is not that God merely became a human being and died on a cross. JESUS' SACRIFICE consists of Him taking the sins of all humanity [for Adam and Eve until the End of the World] and bearing the punishment.

      The Bible says: God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. - 2 Corinthians 5.21

      That means that the Father treated His Son as if His Son was SIN ITSELF while He was dangling from the cross. Horrible Stuff!!! But God did this so that all of us who believe in His Son will be considered RIGHTEOUS before His HOLY EYES [and for you guys who hate anthropomorphisms: considered RIGHTEOUS before HIS HOLINESS]. So now, by believing in Jesus, God sees us as if we were Jesus Himself.

      It is the same Principle as when you file for bankruptcy and your debts are forgiven: still someone has to cough up the cash, in this case your creditors have to consider the debts you owe as paid by themselves.

      For God is Love, but He is also Holy and Just. Sin is an offense to His Holiness [perhaps the anti-thesis of Holiness]. And even though God Loves us all, and all of us are sinners, there is still the issue that in Justice someone has to pay for the "broken dishes" of Sin. In this case God Himself took the debt and paid it in full. WHAT AN AWESOME THOUGHT!!! The God who made the entire universe (billions and billions of stars) lowered himself to become a little bit higher than the animals [a human being] to take the guilt of all the wrong-doing in this tiny planet.

      I could go on and on. But I want you to get a few more facts straight.

      1- The Son of God became a complete human being, he wasn't just partially one. He had to be because otherwise he could not be a Perfect Sacrifice [a perfect substitute for humanity]. That is why the first temptation that Satan threw at him when he was in the desert fasting for 40 days and nights was: "If you are the Son of God turn these stones into bread.". Satan tempted Jesus to use his own powers as God to quench his hunger; at that point he would stop being human and thus disqualify himself as the rescuer of humanity. Another issue related to the complete of Jesus is that when he was hanging by his wrists on the cross he was suffering pain as any human being does, and suffered death [bodily] as any human does.

      2- When Jesus was hanging on the cross, the fact that he was bearing the sins of all humanity made His Father to turn away while he was hanging on the cross. You and I can't understand this well because we all have sinned and being aware of the Presence of God is as rare to us as a beautiful Sunset on the Beach is a rare sight for most of us who cannot afford a beach house in Malibu. But the Son of God, when he became human, he was aware every minute of his entire earthly life of God's Presence. Not until he was to die did he become aware of SEPARATION from that Presence [which is the essence of hell - 2 Thessalonians 1.9]. This is the reason why Jesus cried out: "My God, my God, why have you forgotten me?" Jesus had never felt this SEPARATION in his entire earthly life up to that point. So on the cross Jesus was suffering the agony of hell. That is why he also felt an unquenchable thirst on the cross.

      At the end of the sacrifice, when His Work of atoning all of our sins was complete He said: "It is finished!". A little while later He then said, "Father, into your hands I give my spirit."

      I hope this answers most of your questions, but I recommend that you read this yourself in the Bible the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Look for the chapters on His Death and Ressurrection. Also read the Letters to the Romans, Letter to the Galatians and also the Letter to Hebrews. These Letters in the New Testament will explain better than my words what JESUS' SACRIFICE is all about. By the way, I also recommend you to read an NIV Bible, it is easier to understand than the King James.

      desde_el_Jurutungo_de_Bairoa: Manuel Alonso "El Jíbaro"


      • #4
        my hero!!!!! criollo, you are the BOMB!


        can you imagine for just a second what the pain must have been like? not just the pain of a whipping, or of thorns jabbed into your skin, or of beatings and people spitting upon you, or of leaving people you love, or of being far away from your home, or of having spikes driven through your flesh, or of dangling by your was so much more than much more.

        there is a book by a doctor who described what the autopsy of the body would have been like and what the body went thru...i will give you names and the title soon...

        check it out. maybe it will help you. don't feel badly for coming up with thoughts like those. in Isaiah it tells us that GOD's thoughts are higher than our thoughts, and His ways are higher than our ways. sometimes we don't understand stuff, and he knows that. He made us.


        [This message has been edited by Nicoletta (edited 14 April 2000).]


        • #5
          Thanks for all your responses and attempts to answer my question. Nivi2 I understnad WHY there had to be a sacrifice, and Nicoletta I understand that a great deal of pain is involved in crucifixion. However it was common punishment at the time. Mortal men endured it regularly. Of course, they didn't choose this to pay for someone else's sins. But there have been martyrs who endured horrible deaths for their faith, for God. So you see in my mind, Jesus' sacrifice had to be even bigger than a man's sacrifice in order for it to be a true sacrifice. After all, if I kept hearing sermon after sermon saying, "who would die for another like Jesus did, or who would sacrifice his only son like our Father sacrificed his..." My mind would answer I can think of others, and they were merely mortal men, who because of their faith died for their God. So how could Jesus who, though He was man in the flesh yet also knew the mind of the omniscient God, consider it a sacrifice to endure death like man does everyday, especially knowing that when it is over, He will return to his Father?

          Criollo's explanation and emphasis of how when Christ was crucified he bore ALL the sins of man came closest to helping me understand that this was not a mere PHYSICAL crucifixion. I cannot fathom what it means to bear another's sin. The closest I can come is to know what it is like to be accused of something that someone else did. So, to take that feeling and multiply it by as many people as were saved, then that truly is a sacrifice. And it is one thing to be accused of a crime when you are innocent, but to be completely totally holy and then bear this sin of the world, then that must indeed be where the sacrifice lies.

          I am not completely ignorant of the Bible. I have probably read it through at least a couple of time. But it doesn't necessarily answer my questions, it often just gives me more.

          Thank you for helping me to understand, and Nicoletta thank you for your reassurance that there is no shame in asking the hard questions.