My view of Christ


#21

I don’t understand. Anyway, the earthly ministry of Jesus lasted for 3 years. The resurrection is God’s acceptance of the sacrifice of Jesus. And we can’t say that Jesus is just another sacrificial animal, because he died once for all, making a full satisfaction for the sins of the world. And hardly anybody would have heard about Jesus without the resurrection (not to mention Pentecost).


(Jay Johnson) #22

Right. They were a defeated little band of followers hiding behind locked doors for fear they would soon meet the same fate as their teacher. Among the men, it seems only John mustered the nerve to approach the cross, while the women were right there to observe Jesus’ death, see where his body was taken, and return on Sunday morning to serve as the first witnesses.

From John’s gospel, we all know Thomas as the doubter, and the one who uttered the climactic statement: “My Lord, and my God!” But I also appreciate Thomas for another reason, found in John 11 …

6 So when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days, 7 and then he said to his disciples, “Let us go back to Judea.”

8 “But Rabbi,” they said, “a short while ago the Jews there tried to stone you, and yet you are going back?” …

14 So then he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, 15 and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.”

16 Then Thomas (also known as Didymus) said to the rest of the disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with him.”


#23

I have never heard that theory/opinion before. Can you provide any scriptures to back that up?

Or do you mean it validates what God said/prophesied about the sacrifice, that it set it apart from others? If it is the latter, I’m in agreement, if the former, then it’s new to me.

But Israelites sacrificed blameless animals right. Sacrifice meaning noun, as in animal placed on altar? Or was did sacrifice mean something verb, as in forfeiting something of value? Or both?

Israelites sacrificed their owned animals. Humans made sacrifice to God. But Jesus wasn’t “owned” by us, but God. So Jesus was God’s sacrifice (noun or verb?) to Himself?

That isn’t really rhetorical, I’m trying to learn more about this to come to a better understanding. But I am getting further away from the “substitutionary” stance and leaning more towards “Christus Victor”.

I’m really enjoying reading George MacDonald.

I think the animal sacrifices were more of a verb, as there were grain sacrifices and tithing was a monetary sacrifice. There were giving something of value, but trusting in God that He would provide. When Abraham needed a sacrifice, (in place of his son), God provided. I guess in that sense it was a noun, more than a verb, because the ram cost him nothing, but he was willing to give up his son.

So I think the sacrifice of Jesus, was in the giving something of value. God enjoyed life with Jesus in heaven I am sure, and I am sure Jesus enjoyed being with the Father. But He was willing to give up the ‘luxury’ of that to save man, He gave up that value, sacrificed.

So I see the sacrifice of Jesus in His life, not His death. But His life had to end as some point, and that is also how He was to defeat darkness, in being obedient to God even to the point of death. There were also may prophesies that required His death and it be on a cross and other things, but I think the main purpose of His death was to defeat death in obedience to God.

John 8:1-11 When there was an adulteress/law breaker/sinner brought before Jesus. Was His response, bring the most ‘righteous’ Jew before me and stone that man in her place, or stone me in her place, someone must be punished!
No, His response was mercy, and repentance. "Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”"
Mat 9:13 “But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”"
The laws were never about the consequences of not following the laws, there was always more to it. The laws were there to make us aware of the love of God. If you refer to the bottom of my first post, were I try to compare as a librarians law. It was not about following the laws, to not get yelled at, it was about loving others and putting their needs before yours, and in that, you will follow the laws.

Jesus had to suffer to get to the end goal (of showing us the way, and conquering the powers of darkness), much like if I place an object before you that at the end of a path of hot coals. To get the object, you have to suffer or suffering is something you will endure to reach the end. But if you could walk around the coals, you could still get the object and not suffer. Suffering isn’t in and of itself required, but happens to be there. Jesus was willing to suffer and did. The end goal being, showing us the love of God on this earth, and being obedient to God even to the point of death. But I don’t think He appeased God in suffering. He suffered for us, not in place of us. He was willing to suffer to help us, not He suffered appease God.

But I don’t think God needed a sacrifice for sins in that He is subdued by the “laws” of nature or His own “laws” in order to be just. God did not require a sacrifice or suffering to “appease His wrath”. He is just, and mercy can be just.

There are some of us who would be able to forgive one who wronged us, to cancel their debt. Are we more merciful than the Father, the originator of mercy in us? So can God not also forgive those who wronged Him without a sacrifice or payment?

The Christus Victor seems to fit the rest of the scripture so much better than the more commonly taught “substitutionary” interpretation.

But if God was to forgive all of all sins, are we any better off than before we sinned? That is we Jesus was sent, to conquer sin, not just to make us atoned for that sin.

If Jesus lived in any other rule, like with the Romans or any non-Jewish place, He never would have died. Who would hate or hate enough to kill a man who was extremely humble, loved to serve others, and healed people? If anything, people would probably try to keep Him alive as long as possible, to exploit His kindness as long as possible.

It is only through the law that sin could take such advantage of, to make people hate enough to kill through jealousy and pride.

Eph 1:19-20 " I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power 20 that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms. "

What power is he speaking of? Is it some ‘mystical’ power that is given to Christians? Knowledge is power. Is the power of Christ in the knowledge of how/why He lived? Is the power of Christ, the knowledge of the kingdom of God. A kingdom where power is not earthly, power is not game of thrones, it is not inherited through blood, or influence on brute strength and cunning? Rather a kingdom where power is love, the highest of kings means to be the lowliest of servants? Can anyone name an act/event that God did out of selfishness? Everything is for us, He is thinking of us and serving us in everything He does, the King of Kings!

If Jesus never died, one could say, sure He is wise and moral, but He values His life more than God. But in His death, we can now say that everything He did (the washing of disciples feet) even to the point of death, He was obedient to God. “Not my will, but yours be done”. Luke 22:42 Or Mat 6:10 “your will be done,on earth as it is in heaven.”.

Has Jesus never lived, we would not know of this knowledge, or be able to have this power. His life and the knowledge He shared with us is what conquers death and sin. We too can have this power conquer sin, the power is in the spirit and knowledge of the reason for the laws. To “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself”.

So I echo Paul (but from a different perspective than the tradition views I have had in the past). I no longer read a verse of how the blood of Christ covers us, as a substitutionary statement. Rather along with scripture from the beginning in Gen 9. The blood represented the life, so it was Jesus’ life that covers us, knowledge of how/why He lived that covers us. We are made righteous in the faith in the mercy of God (shown to us through Jesus) and repentance, just like the harlot, who was shown mercy, then told to go and sin no more. I am by no means trying to take anything away from Jesus, as I am saying it is Jesus that made us aware, or pointed us, or showed us the path to life. He is the way, the truth and the life, He showed us the truth, and the truth set us free, free from power of the powers of darkness. All the glory to Jesus, the image of the invisible God, who was able to show us who God is way better than the laws ever could.

I am trying to find verses that go against the Christus Victor mindset, as I don’t want to believe something that is against the Bible, but I have yet to find a verse that says anything against it. If fact, the more verses I find, the more seem to support it, and a much more logical sense then the substitutionary mindset does, that atheist seem to dislike or find fault in. Maybe because it is faulty?


(Albert Leo) #24

As I matured in the Roman Catholic faith, the practice of asking the intercession of ‘patron saints’ became less appealing to me. With one exception: Doubting Thomas. Like the other apostles, he loved Jesus and swore fealty to him even unto death. Like Peter, he tried to discern by reason what Jesus’ exact role was as Messiah, and, like Peter, he got it wrong. Thomas was apparently present at the Last Supper, but no mention of him is made when the soldiers approached Jesus at Gethsemene. It is Peter who is said to have taken up the sword to defend Jesus–an act that might have led to his immediate martyrdom. Could that have been Thomas? And later Peter would deny a milkmaid’s accusation that he knew Jesus (?). I admire (and relate to) Thomas, because he, at one point, would throw reason to the winds and accept Jesus as his Lord and Savior. That gives hope to natural born skeptics like me.
Al Leo


(Albert Leo) #25

[quote=“archicastor1, post:16, topic:38547”]
You also have Tipler’s books where he talks about the Omega Point:

The Anthropic Cosmological Principle (involves lots of math), which was co-authored with John D. Barrow
The Physics of Immortality (also has math, but not as much)
The Physics of Christianity (this one is for a popular audience)

Long ago I read book #1 Tipler/Barrow. I had to skip much of it. Do you recommend book #3? How does it compare with Polkinghorne’s works?
Al Leo


(Randy) #26

Thank you. I am sure that you have lots of experience. I’d like to hear more stories of your studies and experience on this website sometime, if you can work them in. It helps to have people speak who’ve gone through things like this!


(Juan Romero) #27

I am currently studying some math and try to understand it, but the book is very interesting.

It has been criticised by people like Lawrence Krauss and others, but James Redford has addressed almost all criticisms.
The paper can be downloaded here: https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1974708

Although I like both Tipler and Polkinghorne, I think Polkinghorne is better.


#28

God raised Jesus from the dead, so he must have accepted the sacrifice.

btw, are you getting any kind of education in Christianity, such as classes?


#29

I just don’t see any scriptures that back up this theory. Did not God accept many sacrifices before that, that didn’t result in a resurrection? Back in Gen 4 wit the first sacrifices, God accepted Abel with favor, but not Cain’s.

Plenty of times in the OT it speaks of God accepting the sacrifice (noun and most likely verb) as a pleasing aroma. And other times like Lev 26:31 “'I will lay waste your cities as well and will make your sanctuaries desolate, and I will not smell your soothing aromas.”

I don’t see any that say a resurrection is required to show acceptance of a sacrifice (noun). Or resurrection means acceptance.

But of course He accepted it, it was His sacrifice, to Himself, He cannot reject Himself. And when speaking in terms of substitution, that sounds quite illogical. But when you read it as Christus Victor, and see that God (verb, forfeited something of value) sacrificed His Son, for us, to show us The Way and defeat death, it makes a lot more sense. And in that sense, you cannot really accept or reject a verb, only the noun.
Now if the verb isn’t being true to itself or the definition, then of course it is rejected. If you are claiming that you are forfeiting something of value, and you are not, then it is a lie, and is not accepted. All the times when Israel was just killing their excess of animals or giving the excess of their finances or food, it was not a sacrifice. They didn’t forfeit their food or finances to the poor, it required no faith or trust in their Provider, it was not a sacrifice, and God did not accept it.

So again, it was always a metaphor and a matter of accepting or rejecting peoples hearts, than it was the sacrifice (noun) they presented. Your heart made the verb make up that definition to be a true sacrifice or a lie. Abraham was willing to sacrifice his son, but God allowed him to sacrifice a ram instead. The sacrifice was always about the faithful heart, not the subject/noun being sacrificed.

Looking at it from Christus Victor, yes God accepted it, because it was God’s will that it was done. Jesus only did the will of the Father, up to and including the point of death. The sacrifice of Jesus leaving heaven pleased God, and so did His life on earth and death on earth, defeating death, pleased Him. Because it saved man, whom He loves, it showed man the Way, the Truth, and the Life, how to live more abundantly.

But then verses like Rom 12 “to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God” This is clearly speaking more of the verb and not the noun, and the heart.

It also seems the whole trinity was involved in the resurrection, not just God.

“God the Father raised Jesus” Acts 2:24
“But if the Spirit of Him who raised…” Rom 8:11
"The Son Himself lays down His life and takes it up again" John 10:17-18

Nothing formal. But a great amount from the Bible, various preachers, people on this forum, theologians, and textual analyzers.


#30

Here you go:

Let the same mind be in you that was[a] in Christ Jesus,

6 who, though he was in the form of God,
did not regard equality with God
as something to be exploited,
7 but emptied himself,
taking the form of a slave,
being born in human likeness.
And being found in human form,
8 he humbled himself
and became obedient to the point of death—
even death on a cross.

9 Therefore God also highly exalted him
and gave him the name
that is above every name,
10 so that at the name of Jesus
every knee should bend,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11 and every tongue should confess
that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.

Yes, but again, animal sacrifices were provisional, temporary. Again, read Hebrews.

I think you would enjoy adult confirmation courses, where there is a catechism. Or maybe your church offers Christian doctrine classes?


#31

I don’t see anything in that verse that backs up your point of view. Did you accidently post the wrong verse?

Unless you are trying to say the passage says, after death on a cross, God highly exalted Him? And therefore that is somehow saying the sacrifice was accepted? God highly exalted Him, and gave Him the name Jesus, well before His death or resurrection.

I am familiar with Hebrews and what it says and doesn’t say. It says animals basically just covered sins, but Jesus took them away. But it never says anything about sacrifices not being accepted, or that accepting of a sacrifice results in resurrection.

It just sounds to me like you are jumping to that conclusion based of some doctrine taught/believed? Unless you can offer any verses that support that view, I guess we will just have to agree to disagree.

That is kind of the opposite of what I would enjoy. I don’t want 1 leader to tell me what I should believe because it has been traditionally believed by those in the past.

I enjoy challenging those beliefs with scripture, wrestling with God as Jacob did. There is passion and desire if you are wresting, you know the strength of your opponent when you wrestle.

But if you just sit there pinned, you will never understand the strength of the one who is holding you down, nor will you even grow in your own strength. You will never ‘beat’ God, that is not the intent, He could have paralyzed Jacob from the get go (instead He waited till daybreak to touch his hip), but He didn’t, He allowed Him to wrestle Him and was blessed through it.

It is just like science. I might believe wrong things, I will never know if I don’t challenge them or ask others to. I come up with a hypothesis, and then I test it many times in different scriptures. Since it is difficult to know every verse in the Bible, we are provided with other man to sharpen our iron, to wrestle together with us. At some point, after testing it multiple times and not getting contradictory results, it is a sound theory (which is always welcomed to be tested).

And there are many in the church that are closed minded, and any catechism or doctrine questioned is heresy. That is ok, we can still love and serve God and other together, I just won’t be able to grown in my knowledge of God with them in certain aspects. They might not be a EC, but they are still wise and the Spirit of God can speak to me through them for other messages God wants me to know.


#32

Well now, I guess God didn’t accept the sacrifice of Jesus.

Did you formulate your own canon of Scripture?


#33

I never said that. I said God accepted animals, and God accepted Jesus. There were also times when God didn’t accept animals.

Like if I give you $1 or 1 trillion dollars (infinity), you can accept them both, but one means a lot more to you or you can do more with it. Or if I gave you a handful of dirt, you wouldn’t accept that. But it isn’t what you can do, or end up doing with it that means you accept it or not.

I see no where in the scriptures that says a sacrifice must be resurrected to be accepted. Jesus was accepted, and He was resurrected, but one didn’t cause the other, they both might have validated the other.

God accepted the animal sacrifices, but what was more important, was the repentant heart that God was accepting. In accepting it, God was accepting their sins being covered. God also accepted Jesus as a sacrifice, and accepting this was out sins being removed, as far as the east is from the west. This was God’s sacrifice to us though, it was not our sacrifice. This was also Jesus’ sacrifice to us. But the sacrifice wasn’t the only the death, though He had to die, the sacrifice was His life, and that is what conquered sin.

If you draw up a demolition plan, strategically dig holes, place thousands of pounds of C4 over years of work, and then one day, put a tiny spark/electric signal and a place gets destroyed, what destroyed the building? The spark/signal, or the C4? Most people would credit the C4, though the explosion never would have occurred without that signal. But if you placed the C4 poorly, or not enough of it, the signal would not have done the job either.

Jesus life was an orchestration of timing, placement, knowledge, power/love, and finally His death was the tiny electric signal that destroyed death.

John 14:23 “Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching.”

Jesus doesn’t say, anyone who loves me will agree on how to get saved, or how heaven works, or the geographic cosmology, or the historicity of Noah, or ect…

I have theories, and interpretations of what the Bible says on certain things. I use the Bible and the logic God gave me to come up with those opinions. They help me understand and know God better, and I want to keep learning more about Him and His love.

However, in the grand scheme of things, it is so not important what our opinions or interpretations of these trivial things are. What is important is to obey his teaching. To love the Lord our God with all our hearts, soul, strength, and mind. Give Him the glory for all things, know that He deserved all the glory, that is His kingdom that has come. Knowing the goodness of His kingdom, and wanting to live it and share it with the world. The way we share His kingdom, is to show it to others. Love our neighbors as ourselves. Put the needs of others above our selves.

This is what our King does, He washed His disciples feet. And I don’t think that Jesus was thinking “eww, I hate feet, this job is below me, or I will do this out of love, but it is not my favorite thing to do”. I think Jesus actually valued their needs above His own, and took great joy in washing their feet, great joy in putting their needs above His. I pray that everyday more and more I see the world through His eyes and put the needs of others before mine, showing them Him and His love, and His Kingdom, through my life, and may He ever be glorified.

If you want to claim that is my own personal canon of Scripture, go ahead, though I can easily back up all of that with scriptures. I don’t get too wrapped up in social constructs. Like this thread says What do you call yourself? .If you want to know for social reason, I will call myself a Baptist and I go by the canon that the 66 books in the protestant canon. I don’t challenge that canon, but when I say challenge, I meant challenge ones interpretation that lead to some of the catechism or doctrine that is so widely believed like YEC. But when looking deeper into the scriptures, it can easily (and I argue more strongly) be looked at in a different light, which seems to agree more with other scriptures and the entire Biblical narrative even better.

I am personally believe that I am saved by the power of Jesus Christ. Who lived, died and was resurrected. I now have His Spirit living in me, and when my flesh fails, He will still be with me for eternity, thanks to His great grace and mercy, not through anything I did. I try to follow the 2 greatest commandments as best as I can, because I believe they are the best way to live, and they bring God glory, to whom all glory belongs. There is no saving power in doing these acts, nor condemnation power in not doing them.

I am also not sure if everyone needs to believe in Jesus as I do to be saved. There are various scriptures our there that contradict that. I will still continue to preach of the goodness of Jesus, and that He was the image of the invisible God, His love manifested for us, to save us. That what Jesus did was ordained from before we were created and it brings God great glory, and we can live life the most abundant through knowledge of who Jesus was and what He did.

But I will not condemn others or say they must believe what I believe to be saved or that have the only true answers or I know the mind of God. So in a sense, I am a universalist or inclusivist, or I see scriptures that fit those theories. I won’t preach those, not claim they are right or wrong, because we were never to preach theories to anyone, rather the love, and put others needs before our own, “Obey His teachings”.


#34

That is a terrible caricature of adult theological education! At the very least it’s valuable to know what the church has taught even if you don’t agree with it. And the canon of Scripture didn’t spring into existence at the drop of a hat.


#35

You are right, sorry. That bitterness probably stems from my youth when I was taught many false dichotomies and the stuff that I believe now as heresy.

God point, though I don’t have anything against the Bible or the canon. Did I say anything rejecting scripture?

If I do have issues, it is with ‘traditional doctrine’ (for lack of better term) of scriptures.

What I should have said, was I don’t want to learn to memorize catechisms and believe them just because many others believe them. But if I more enjoy a person or group of people explain which scriptures made this or that catechism, and being ok with challenging it with other scriptures.

My knowledge of the different denominations or historical “church fathers” isn’t as strong as many here, but I am learning more and more.

I don’t know which church or catechism says: we know Jesus’ sacrifice was accepted because He was resurrected or resurrection is required for acceptance.

I still see no scriptures supporting that.


(Edward Miller) #36

Good answer, Beagle-friend!


#37

You don’t want to trust a pastor leading a class, or any traditional beliefs. (Of course you should reject the bad ones.) But when you accept Scripture you are putting your trust in Biblical writers, redactors, scribes, and the churchmen who canonized the Scripture you have now. It didn’t just happen spontaneously.


#38

Therein lies the rub…

Who decides who is good and bad? Correct interpretation or incorrect?

I am aware of this. Again, where did I say I don’t trust the canonical Bible?

It’s not that I can’t, or don’t trust any pastor or traditional teachings. But if I find a few scriptures that contradict those, and those newly found/explained verses fit the larger biblical narrative better, I am going to go with the interpretation that fits the larger narrative more. Regardless if it has been taught or believed for 1 year or 1000 years.

But this is really, It is just my opinion on fairly trivial matters. It doesn’t affect the way I live or act, or the goodness, mercy, just, and love of God.


(system) #39

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