Author Topic: Why is killing an innocent man necessary to redeem our sinful nature?  (Read 1805 times)

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Offline kaziglu bey

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You all know the story. Humans are doomed to a lifetime of temptation and wickedness due to the sins of Adam and Eve. A long time later, God decides to give us a way to atone for this. An apparently innocent man must be tortured to death, and then resurrected three days later, and if we choose to believe in this, we can be forgiven our sins and have eternal life.

Why is it necessary for an innocent man to die to accomplish the end of living eternally without punishment? How is another evil act supposed to redeem us for the evil acts of other people? Why is it that God only ever seems capable of doing things that are evil in order to stop/prevent/punish/redeem evil? In the OT, we see God killing lots of people, pretty much all of the time. The OT could in fact be subtitled "A collection of the murders perpetrated by the jealous, vengeful God Yahweh". He even kills people for complaining about God killing so many people. How is this a solution, and what problem is it supposed to solve?

The implications of following this type of standard are disturbing. Suppose a neighbor's dog poops on your lawn. You have several options available to you.
1) Ask your neighbor to clean up after his dog.
2) Clean up the mess yourself and ask your neighbor not to let his dog poop on your lawn again.
3) Build a fence to separate your property from your neighbor's so that their dog doesn't poop on your lawn.
4) Pick up the poop and put it on your neighbor's lawn so that it is not your problem anymore.
5) Shoot the dog, disembowel it, throw the mangled remains through your neighbors window, stuff the dog poop in your neighbor's mouth,  strangle him with his dog's intestines, and burn his house down.

If a regular person chose option 5, they would be considered a sadistic psychopath. If God were to chose this option (which seems to mirror his only approach to things), it would be considered not only a good thing, but necessary, because God did it. You can't question God. If he does it, it is good. If you think that it is overkill, he'll kill you too.

How is this a rational, justifiable, or sane way to deal with the problem?

Why is it OK for God to do more evil in order to cleanse us of evil? I always thought that "two wrongs don't make a right", but it seems to be the only way God can make things right. Given that an all-knowing, all-powerful God would have more than just five options, why does he always go with the worst one? And why does God demand that we go along with the evil act of killing an innocent man too, in order to make things right? How is this in any way good? By what means does acquiescing to evil absolve us of evil?
Seriously though... What would happen if the Great Green Arkleseizure didn't fram up the rammastam before the hermite curve achieved maximum nurdfurdle velocity? Now THAT would be something. AmIrite?

Offline ParkingPlaces

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Re: Why is killing an innocent man necessary to redeem our sinful nature?
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2013, 10:52:02 PM »
The sh*t is deep with this one. Not with you, kaziglu.  But with the story of JC and his merry band of men. And this semi-sacrifice that didn't make the 5:00 news for fifty or sixty years.

Having just read an article about the burial of Genghis Khan, whose funeral was attended by 2,000 people, who were then slaughtered by 800 of Khans' soldiers so they couldn't tell anyone where the Khan was buried, and then those 800 soldiers were slaughtered by other soldiers to seal the deal, it is pretty obvious that there have been humans willing to sacrifice innocents for a long, long time.

Note that it was humans who did the decision making, and humans who did the dying. We're really good at that. So good that sometimes we toss sacrifice stories into our lore to make a point or to scare the listener into submission. And that is just what the Jesus story is. An effort to both scare and control. The story seeks to create those who will submit to the tale in the name of the dead guy, both to control those willing to believe and to justify destroying those who are not willing.

If you're gonna go on a rampage, a good backstory goes a long ways towards justifying your slaughters. And/or defining your enemies. Every aspect of the biblical story of sin and redemption is so clearly human in origin that I'm surprised some people today aren't suing god for copyright infringement. But since the people most likely to do that are the priest class who use the lessons to further their own cause, they know a good thing when they see it and hence ignore such details.

Omnipotent dudes don't need worshipping. Omnipotent dudes don't need to rely on faith. Onmipotent dudes have no reason to have shortcoming that match exactly the shortcoming of the silly dust-bunnies they created. But humans, well, that's another story. Humans need stuff like this. Humans need it big-time Both as leaders and followers. The justification for their special group has to have plots and deviousness and intrigue and death, because humans demand those qualities in their power-trippers. And in their meek.

There are humans who would disembowel the dog and use the guts to strangle the owner. And some of them are in a position of power, not only politically, but also religiously. And said humans will hide their own inhumanity by redefining it as the most humane thing on the planet. And Mr. and Mrs. Gullibility will follow our of fear or awe or both and go into full sin-damning mode and start knocking on doors. And pretty soon the whole planet starts to suck. All because of a story. A frickin' silly story.

It is not okay for a god to do this. But humans? That's another matter. Some are able to say that it is okay, and if they have a big enough sword, it is sort of hard to argue with them.

The bible is not a story of morality. It is a list of human flaws. It might even be a useful list. Except it has followers instead of readers, and they too often use it as a tool instead of as a source. So we're f**ked.
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Offline WakingDeath

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If Jesus was God then technically God did this to Himself for the sins of man.

Matthew 5:17-18 7 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18 For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. "

Jesus fulfilled the Law by dying for us.  The Prophets and the law were fulfilled on that day.  On that day the old law became obsolete because all was accomplished.

Offline screwtape

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If Jesus was God then technically God did this to Himself for the sins of man.

That strikes most thinking people as confusing.  God sacrificing himself...to himself...to change a rule...he made.  Why the confusion?  Why go through the theatrics just to change a rule?

Jesus fulfilled the Law

What does that mean?  How does one "fulfill the law"?  I know you can fulfill an obligation, or your duty, or your end of a bargain.  But how do you fulfill a law?

The Prophets and the law were fulfilled on that day.

Nope.  It does not mention anything about prophets.  That would be an addition and not scriptural.

On that day the old law became obsolete because all was accomplished.

Nope.  It does not say it became obsolete.  If it was obsolete, it would be abolished.  Jesus H specifically said it was not abolished.   

It is weird to me that people quote a verse that specifically says the old laws are not obsolete in order to show the old laws are obsolete.
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Offline WakingDeath

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That strikes most thinking people as confusing.  God sacrificing himself...to himself...to change a rule...he made.  Why the confusion?  Why go through the theatrics just to change a rule?

Ask Him when/if you meet him.  It is not known why. 

What does that mean?  How does one "fulfill the law"?  I know you can fulfill an obligation, or your duty, or your end of a bargain.  But how do you fulfill a law?

The Old Law almost always ended up with people dying for their sins. Jesus supposedly died for our sins. He took our place. Law fulfilled.

Nope.  It does not mention anything about prophets.  That would be an addition and not scriptural.


Yes it does . I just showed you earlier. Look it up. I did.

Nope.  It does not say it became obsolete.  If it was obsolete, it would be abolished.  Jesus H specifically said it was not abolished.
 

No. He said that it will not be abolished until the law AND the prophets were fulfilled. His death fulfilled the requirements of the law, and what the prophets who spoke about Him previously have said.

It is weird to me that people quote a verse that specifically says the old laws are not obsolete in order to show the old laws are obsolete.


It's not weird if you understand it. It would seem weird to those who use it as one of the bibles contradictions and have accepted that conclusion. It's a tricky verse. He preached against a lot of the old law and then said something like this. It is not a contradiction at all. He died for our sins.  Old Law fulfilled and abolished at that moment.  No contradiction.
« Last Edit: June 21, 2013, 09:33:00 AM by WakingDeath »

Offline screwtape

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Ask Him when/if you meet him.  It is not known why. 

that's not a very good answer.  It is one that allows you to escape having to think about the ramifications.  You have a confusing and apparently irrational scenario. A god doing weird and arbitrary things. 

An inportant skill as a rationalist is to notice your own confusion.[1]  When reality confuses you it means you are holding an incorrect belief.  Either the input is wrong or your model is wrong.

The Old Law almost always ended up with people dying for their sins. Jesus supposedly died for our sins. He took our place. Law fulfilled.

Eh, I'm not convinced.  For starters, people didn't die for their sins. See sinner extraordinaire, David. 

Secondly, jesus H - aka The Lamb of God - was supposed to be a sacrifice.  You know, like a sacrifical lamb?  But sinners, even when they were killed, were not sacrificed.  So jesus H wasn't taking their place. 

Third, in what way does jesus H dying "fulfill the law".  If I use Strong's concordance, the word used for fulfill is "pleroo".  It means:
Quote
1) to make full, to fill up, i.e. to fill to the full
  a) to cause to abound, to furnish or supply liberally
    1) I abound, I am liberally supplied
2) to render full, i.e. to complete
  a) to fill to the top: so that nothing shall be wanting to full measure, fill to the brim
  b) to consummate: a number
    1) to make complete in every particular, to render perfect
    2) to carry through to the end, to accomplish, carry out, (some undertaking)
  c) to carry into effect, bring to realisation, realise
    1) of matters of duty: to perform, execute
    2) of sayings, promises, prophecies, to bring to pass, ratify, accomplish
    3) to fulfil, i.e. to cause God's will (as made known in the law) to be obeyed as it should be, and God's promises (given through the prophets) to receive fulfilment
http://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=G4137&t=KJV

none of the uses under 1) make any sense.  2a is meaningless in this context. 2b is too.  2b1and 2 would make sense if he were either adding to the law (to complete it) or fulfilling a prophesy.  If the former, that does not abolish the law, it only adds to it.  If the latter, well, that is irrelevent since it does not say prophesy, it says law.

2c fails in the same way as 2b2.  2c1 fails in the same way as 2a.  2c2 fails in the same way as 2b2.  2c3 is obviously untrue.  yhwh's will, as made known in the law, is not obeyed as it should be.

So, nothing fits.  It looks like the writer of Matt just got carried away with flowery language and someone later down the line interpreted it to mean what they wanted it to mean.

Yes it does . I just showed you earlier. Look it up. I did.

Oh crud.  I totally missed that.  You are completely right.  It does say prophets.  My error.

No. He said that it will not be abolished until the law AND the prophets were fulfilled.

No.  He said (quoting from your post): "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them."

He said twice they would not be abolished.  There was no condition that said "they'll be abolished once they're fulfilled..." There was no "until" regarding abolition.   


It's not weird if you understand it.

Yes, but I would say anyone who claims to understand it is mistaken.  xians latch on to the "fulfill" part and kind of shoehorn it into the meaning they want or find convenient.

He died for our sins. 

Don't you find that immoral and repugnant?  How can someone else pay for your misdeeds? 
I find the whole concept selfish.
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Offline WakingDeath

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that's not a very good answer.  It is one that allows you to escape having to think about the ramifications.  You have a confusing and apparently irrational scenario. A god doing weird and arbitrary things.
 

It may seem weird by our standards,  but who are we to judge the motives of an all knowing being. It is possible that we do not have the ability to understand God's motives.

Eh, I'm not convinced.  For starters, people didn't die for their sins. See sinner extraordinaire, David.


They used to kill "sinners" all the time.  Some cultures still do.  The Taliban and a soccer field comes to mind.

Secondly, jesus H - aka The Lamb of God - was supposed to be a sacrifice.  You know, like a sacrifical lamb?  But sinners, even when they were killed, were not sacrificed.  So jesus H wasn't taking their place.

Technically he did indeed die. He suffered horribly as well.  God sacrificed His only Son, which was God made flesh. God experienced a horrible suffering death at the hands of humans.  And don't forget.. it was not God who committed the act.  Humans killed Christ.

Third, in what way does jesus H dying "fulfill the law".  If I use Strong's concordance, the word used for fulfill is "pleroo".  It means:
Quote
1) to make full, to fill up, i.e. to fill to the full
  a) to cause to abound, to furnish or supply liberally
    1) I abound, I am liberally supplied
2) to render full, i.e. to complete
  a) to fill to the top: so that nothing shall be wanting to full measure, fill to the brim
  b) to consummate: a number
    1) to make complete in every particular, to render perfect
    2) to carry through to the end, to accomplish, carry out, (some undertaking)
  c) to carry into effect, bring to realisation, realise
    1) of matters of duty: to perform, execute
    2) of sayings, promises, prophecies, to bring to pass, ratify, accomplish
    3) to fulfil, i.e. to cause God's will (as made known in the law) to be obeyed as it should be, and God's promises (given through the prophets) to receive fulfilment
http://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=G4137&t=KJV

You just provided many definitions of how the word "fulfill" was used. To complete, to execute, to carry through to the end. 



none of the uses under 1) make any sense.  2a is meaningless in this context. 2b is too.  2b1and 2 would make sense if he were either adding to the law (to complete it) or fulfilling a prophesy.  If the former, that does not abolish the law, it only adds to it.  If the latter, well, that is irrelevent since it does not say prophesy, it says law.


But in what context was he saying this. Context has a lot to do with what is written in the Gospels

So, nothing fits.  It looks like the writer of Matt just got carried away with flowery language and someone later down the line interpreted it to mean what they wanted it to mean.

It fits perfectly.



He said twice they would not be abolished.  There was no condition that said "they'll be abolished once they're fulfilled..." There was no "until" regarding abolition.
 

He said it wouldn't be abolished until ALL was fulfilled.  His death fulfilled it all.

Yes, but I would say anyone who claims to understand it is mistaken.  xians latch on to the "fulfill" part and kind of shoehorn it into the meaning they want or find convenient


It's the only way it makes sense. It's not about what I find convenient.

Don't you find that immoral and repugnant?  How can someone else pay for your misdeeds? 
I find the whole concept selfish.

Sacrifice to save others is neither selfish nor repugnant. Do you have children?  If so.. if one of them as a child was threatened with torture, would you not take their place?   You may regret it later but I imagine you would to protect them.

And yo dude!   I thought this place was a shelter!   ;)

Offline screwtape

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It may seem weird by our standards,  but who are we to judge the motives of an all knowing being. It is possible that we do not have the ability to understand God's motives.

We are rational actors with the ability to figure things out.  I have heard xians say god gave them a brain to use.  Invoking the mystery of god is a tactic used to avoid thinking. 

They used to kill "sinners" all the time.  Some cultures still do.  The Taliban and a soccer field comes to mind.

You're not helping your case. We are talking about ancient jews following the laws allegedly given to them by yhwh.  And you have just compared them - yhwh and the hebrews - to the Taliban.  What does that make jesus in your analogy?  Not Mullah Omar, I hope.

I'm also not sure they actually did a lot of killing.  I've not seen anything historical on the topic.  I suspect it was then as it is today that a bunch of zealous nutjobs ran the franchise and the people went along with the parts they wanted to.  I doubt there were many people stoning their kids for disobedience.

Technically he did indeed die.

I disagree.  Death is something that happens to mortal creatures with physical bodies.  yhwh is supposedly not a mortal creature and does not have a physical body, though that is debatable given several passages in the OT.  But the point is, god isn't a physical person.  He was allegedly walking around Palestine wearing a meat suit named jesus H.[1]  And the Romans poked holes in the meat suit.  yhwh did not die, technically, so much as he took off the meat suit.

He suffered horribly as well. 

I am familiar with the story.  I have a hard time with the idea that a supposedly omnipotent god suffered because some mortals roughed up his meat suit.  If jesus H was just a man, not a god, then everything makes a lot more sense.  His sacrifice actually means something.  Otherwise, it's just a god having a slightly inconvenient weekend.

And don't forget.. it was not God who committed the act.  Humans killed Christ.

I didn't forget.  I pointed that out in another thread.[2]  And I made a larger point in doing so.  Supposedly this was all according to god's will.  It is not like god put on his meat suit to have a vacation in the ancient middle east and things went horribly wrong to his surprise.  He supposedly had a goal in mind.  And for that goal to be fulfilled[3] certain things had to happen.  People played the roles god needed them to in order for his will to be done.

So they are less like free agents and more like actors following a script.  Or puppets on strings.

You just provided many definitions of how the word "fulfill" was used. To complete, to execute, to carry through to the end. 

But to "complete the law" makes no sense.  The law is a rule.  To "execute the law" makes sense, but that's not what he did.


He said it wouldn't be abolished until ALL was fulfilled.  His death fulfilled it all.

It didn't say it would be abolished.  It said nothing would be changed (jots and tittles) until the law was fulfilled (whatever that means).  He does not elaborate on what changes would be made, if any.  In context, the next verses are about how you must continue to follow the law and how people must do that in order to get into heaven.  So I do not take this as any indication the law is abolished.


It's the only way it makes sense. It's not about what I find convenient.

I don't mean you personally. 


Sacrifice to save others is neither selfish nor repugnant.

Did you read the link?


And yo dude!   I thought this place was a shelter!   ;)

I didn't think I said anything offensive or aggressive.  But sometimes I'm a little tone deaf in that regard.  If you feel I did, please let me know.  I rely on other people to moderate me in here. So if I am being harsh or a jerk, I need you to let me know.

 1. kind of calls to mind Buffalo Bill from Silence of the Lambs.
 2. this one
http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,25067.msg559964.html#msg559964
 3. there is that word in its proper use
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Offline WakingDeath

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I didn't think I said anything offensive or aggressive.  But sometimes I'm a little tone deaf in that regard.  If you feel I did, please let me know.  I rely on other people to moderate me in here. So if I am being harsh or a jerk, I need you to let me know.

You're totally not being a jerk. It's all good.  I am just not here in "The Shelter" to debate. I am just here to discuss and learn about each others thoughts.  That's all good. :)  We can agree to disagree here and keep talking about it if you like.   So we see things differently.  That is what makes people interesting.  :D


Offline screwtape

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I am just not here in "The Shelter" to debate.

fair enough.  We can leave the discussion at that.
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Offline SkyWriting

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Re: Why is killing an innocent man necessary to redeem our sinful nature?
« Reply #10 on: July 31, 2013, 08:22:11 AM »
You all know the story. Humans are doomed to a lifetime of temptation and wickedness due to the sins of Adam and Eve. A long time later, God decides to give us a way to atone for this. An apparently innocent man must be tortured to death, and then resurrected three days later, and if we choose to believe in this, we can be forgiven our sins and have eternal life. Why is it necessary for an innocent man to die to accomplish the end of living eternally without punishment?

Well, God is life.  Man was given "choice" in the matter and parted from the Creator.
There is a two outcome event:
Man stays at God's side and lives eternal.
Man goes his own way and dies.

Man will always die......unless.....somebody else takes the hit.
So God volunteered part of himself to die in our stead.

This life is a pale shadow of real life and then we die.  So God volunteered to pay the price for us.  We still have to die, but we get a new life after we accept the payment for our choices. Don't accept the payment, ya don't get the benefits.



Offline Graybeard

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Re: Why is killing an innocent man necessary to redeem our sinful nature?
« Reply #11 on: July 31, 2013, 01:57:12 PM »
Man will always die......unless.....somebody else takes the hit.

1.   I am afraid I cannot see the logic in that statement. Do you mean to say that if someone is on their deathbed, someone else can “die in place of them?”

Quote
So God volunteered part of himself to die in our stead.

2.   Could you explain how a god dies?

Quote
This life is a pale shadow of real life and then we die.  […] but we get a new life

3.   Have you any proof of this, other than that someone perhaps said it?

Quote
… after we accept the payment for our choices. Don't accept the payment, ya don't get the benefits.

4.   Have you ever heard stories that go along the lines of:

“McDouglas advertised several high priced automobiles for sale, however, after payment had been made by his victims, they found that there was no car.”?



I know you have been told that you dodge or simply refuse to answer questions, or answer a question that was not asked. Can I ask that you address the four points above?
RELIGION, n. A daughter of Hope and Fear, explaining to Ignorance the nature of the Unknowable. Ambrose Bierce