How did Jesus sacrifice himself?

Because, many of us grew up in homes where it was claimed that events of the bible were factually accurate, and furthermore, pure logic (or rather, tired old apologetics) leads you to believe that god not only exists, but that he is good. The god of the gaps, and similar explanations might not be theologically sound, but it is the #1 household choice around the globe.

How did you reach that conclusion? I’ve considered this myself but can’t see any real evidence one way or the other. I’m not sure there’s any real comparision between crucifixtion and what a pro athelete goes through but I think it’s safe to say others have suffered as much.

I don’t get this at all. The Quakers have a belief that there is nothing anyone can do to harm the dignity of another person. Each person can only effect their own dignity with their actions.
The only people disgraced were the poeple who beat, laughed at, and condemed Jesus. Not Christ.
God gave up his sovereignty?? Doubtful. It was people doing what people do and exercising their free will. Once again. Since Jesus had only an eternity of bliss to look forward to by surrendering his physical body I don’t see the sacrifice on a physical level unless you consider that leaveing heavenly bliss to even experience mortal frailties might be a sacrifice. Even at that. Eternity vs. 33 years or so of mortallity. Where’s the sacrifice?

Many people have already made the points I have in my mind, but I wanted to pitch in my viewpoint that it was no sacrifice for Jesus or God.

When we give up our sons & daughters in war, for example, we really have no clue that we’re going to see them again. Some of us firmly believe we are, of course, but still in our heart of hearts there’s always that uncertainty until we find out.

Our soldiers who go through torture have no concept of the end. They are not a Godhead that knows it will end. And of course Jesus could have turned off the pain, if he chose to…to say that he couldn’t dims any other accomplishment he had. He chose to be a carpenter, if you say he had no choice in the matter then he’s just a poor slob like the rest of us.

God *knew * Jesus was coming back. What kind of a sacrifice was that? Every person who gave up their child to war performed more of a sacrifice.

And Jesus, upon being sacrificed, returned to his Father and his heavenly home.

And there must be some logic to any religious belief for some people…the whole point is some of us can’t - not won’t, but **can’t ** - accept it on mere faith.

Since you apparently missed my post, I’ll refer you to it. On the other hand, if you’re ignoring it, fine, but if you saw it and would like to address its points, then feel free.

I have been having a lot of new thoughts, at least for me, about the meaning of Jesus.

I have come to believe that God, for centuries, was telling the people of Israel to love each other, obey Him, and love Him. they just could never get it right. They did ok some times, but more often than not, they fell back into self-serving ways of life that did not please Him.

I think He became human in the form of Jesus for one reason. To show us how to do it. Jesus was God saying “Like this…” His life and ministry was one of complete love for His fellow man and for his Heavenly Father. He showed us how to love and treat each other and how to honor Him. Just how far should you go in loving your neighbors? Even those who would persecute you? You should be ready to give them everything you have, even your life. His death on the cross was His example to us of the lengths we are to go to to love those who love us, and who do not.

Now being God in human form to give us this living example, He certainly could not be “killed”. He rose again and returned to Heaven. Hopefully His example lives on in our hearts.

With all due respect the portion of your post I quoted contradicts the words of Isaiah. If you accept that Jesus is God, consider Isaiah’s report on the God’s oath as follows:

Isaiah 45:23
By myself I have sworn,
my mouth has uttered in all integrity
a word that will not be revoked:
Before me every knee will bow;
by me every tongue will swear.

I once accepted the traditional christian beliefs of Jesus being sacrificed for our sins.
Even after not attending I still entertained the idea that somehow a sinless Christ had conquered death for all mankind and created a bridge that allowed us to return to God.
There are still mysteries to unravel but it seems to me if God is a all encompassing spirit then no temporary physical act could somehow atone for the sins of mankind.

Sin is when we choose something that seperates us from God. It is a spiritual act not a physical one. Thats why Jesus pointed out that hating , harboring lingering malice and resentment, is the same as physical murder on a spiritual level.
The significance of what Jesus did was that he lived according to spiritual truth in the physical body. {Don’t place your faith and priorities on the tempoary things that fade away. Choose the eternal} When the physical was at stake he still chose to live according to the truth. He refused to surrender the eternal to the temporary. It’s a level of spiritual awakening and committment that few attain.

Most of you are still interpreting “sacrifice” as “given up forever”, when this is just not so. The essence of sacrifice in the Biblical sense isn’t giving something up, but offering it to God. Many of the OT sacrifices weren’t burned wholly, but could be eaten by the priests and worshippers. What made them sacrifices was that they were offered up for the sins of the people, not that they were lost forever.

Even though Christ didn’t stay dead, that doesn’t mean He wasn’t a sacrifice, because He fulfilled the key requirements: He, as the ultimate high priest, offered Himself, as the ultimate victim, to the Godhead as a whole, for the sins of humanity. The fact that He didn’t stay dead doesn’t mean that the sacrifice didn’t happen, any more than the fact that the OT sacrifices could be eaten afterwards didn’t mean they weren’t really sacrifices.

Interesting point.

After reading Leviticus I found it to be ridiculous to think God wanted the priests to twist the heads off birds to gain favor. How do we then compare that to Christ?

As I said before, the point of the OT sacrifices was that they would receive the effects of the offerer’s sin (corruption, death, etc.) and restore the offerer into communion with God. This only covered the effects, though; a person still had to repent of the sin. It was a one-time only thing, though, and the person would still eventually die. Christ took on the effects of the sins of all of us, but by the resurrection destroyed the ultimate hold those effects had on human nature, so there’s no more need to keep offering sacrifices for every sin, though repentance is of course still necessary.

I’m not; but what I do expect is consistency. For instance, according to most Christian dogma, if I die in a state of unrepented sin, I will suffer an eternity of damnation. However, the same dogma says Christ paid for the sins of all mankind by spending three days in Hell. Why does God demand more from me than he does of Jesus? If Jesus is supposed to pay for the sins of all mankind, he should have to spend eternity in Hell, just like the rest of us. Now that’s sacrifice.

I see what it’s supposed to be according to the beliefs. It just doesn’t make sense as a reality. It’s contradicts what the OP is asking. In God we should expect only perfect justice and love. How is this just or loving? The concept that an omniscient spirit could be appeased by any physical act doesn’t make sense.

If you look at it according to Anselm’s juridical model, it’s not going to make sense. The point of the sacrifice was not to appease God’s wrath towards the sinner – that is a 12th-century Western innovation. It was rather to take away the effects of the sin. If I sin, I can be cleansed of the effects of that sin, the spiritual corruption, through Christ’s sacrifice.

God is, by nature, wrathful towards sin. Christ made it possible to be cleansed from sin, so in that sense by taking away the sin He is appeasing the Godhead’s wrath towards sin, rather than making Himself the target of the Father’s wrath towards humans.

Before Christ’s sacrifice, a repentant individual could cleanse himself of the guilt of sin, but not the effects, so upon death he could still not enter into the direct presence of God. After the resurrection, it was now possible to be cleasned from both the guilt and the effects, and so enter into communion with God. If one was still unrepentant, though, the guilt and taint would remain, and so the presence of God would be experienced as fire and torment. If repentant, the guilt and taint would be removed, and God’s presence would be bliss.

There’s no contradiction. Mere knowledge that He is God has no bearing on whether a man values Him as God. I know that Bush is president of the US, but I hold him in contempt all the same.

Sure, but would you use your free will to bow before George Bush ?
My point is merely to take issue with your claim that Christ has/had permanently lost some of the people He had purchased.

I respect the thoughtfulness of your beliefs. {assuming they are yours} There was a time that I thought Christ made comminion with God possible. Now I tend to believe he was a great example of that commuion but it is not dependent on him.
I don’t believe a physical act. {The suffering and physical death of Jesus} can appease a spiritual God. Our choices keep us apart from God and it it through our choices that we can commune with God. As we choose love, forgiveness and truth, our old behaviors fall away and we become more Christ like. More in communion with God.

The wha…? I never said any such thing. He has lost those who’ve declared themselves “Not For Sale”. Were He to claim those as His own, He would be a tyrant.

I repeated a previous statement. What I meant to write was.

I don’t believe a physical act by Christ or anyone could take away the consequences of our choices. {the effects of our sin}

Not my beliefs, but my statement of the beliefs of the Eastern Orthodox church as I understand them.

I see, interesting theology.