The last post I stated:
"The Gospel takes us on a process characterized by the collapse of certain sacred structures. Specifically, the Gospel leads us down a path that calls us to abandon anything which contributes to the sacrifice and victimizing of others. The Gospel leads us down a road that calls into question ANYTHING that leads us to victimize anyone/anything. Which might even be something that we, at this point, would consider foundational to our religious tradition. It might lead us down the path of abandoning some traditional and popular understandings of why Jesus died."
It was articulated to me a few times that God is 100% holy and as such cannot be in the presence of sin, and since humanity is sin soaked or has the taint of sin upon them, there is a chasm between God an humans. I was told the"good news" was that God provided his Son, Jesus, as a sacrifice which 'bridged' the chasm between God and humanity. This bridge (depicted as a cross) allows humans to be with God. It is argued that God required a sacrifice in order for this bridge to exist.
What I glean from these "Spiritual laws" is that God required the death of Jesus. Jesus was the sacrifice to end all sacrifices - the final blood sacrifice which God demanded so that we no longer need to sacrifice blood any longer.
Not only do I not resonate with this theology personally, I think it is counter to the Gospel.
I know this is not popular Christianity. I know this statement is polarizing. I know some will read that statement and think/say "Jason, you cannot be Christian if you do not believe that Jesus' death was required by God for atonement of Sin. Here are the Scriptures which state this..."
It is my theology that God does not demand or has ever demanded blood sacrifice for any sin or conflict or scandal in the history of the world. I believe the scriptures which "require" blood sacrifice are not compatible with the much larger picture of God through out the Bible.
To use an example, which I am not trying to proof text but rather to give a glimpse to what I am talking about, look at how God responded to Cain when he murdered Able. Cain was concerned that if he saw anyone else that they would kill him. But God does not allow this action to happen. God marks Cain. God protects Cain. If God required blood sacrifice for the sin of Cain, then why would God protect Cain?
God is not that deity which requires blood sacrifice. That deity is not the God I come to know in Jesus Christ. The thing which requires blood sacrifice for a restoration or a reconciliation to take place is, in my theology, is not the Triune God of Christianity but Satan.
If you are interested to learn more about this God who does not demand blood sacrifice, I recommend Scapegaot by Rene Girard, The Powers That Be by Walter Wink or even the DVD The Gods are not Angry by Rob Bell.
Additionally, this Friday at 6:30pm at Arlington Heights UMC I will be using Galatians 1:11-17 as an entry into this exact topic. I also will go into more detail on this subject on Sunday June 6th at Grace UMC at 11am.