Was Jesus' sacrifice really necessary? Or even a sacrifice at all?

by AiAi 26 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Cold Steel
    Cold Steel

    This is a GREAT question and is one of the weak spots of Christianity. But as a Christian, I believe there had to be reason.

    If one reads Isaiah 53, it's clear that Jesus was the fulfillment. But when he asked the Father whether the bitter cup could be removed, the answer was invariably no. It shows that the Father 1) either couldn't effect the atonement without the sacrifice of his Son, or 2) the Father didn't want to remove the bitter cup. I believe the answer is (1) the atonement coul not be effected until Jesus took upon himself the sins of the world and died.

    If true, that meant that the Father could not have spared Jesus. If Jesus taken upon himself the sins of the world and offered up his life, the atonement could not and would not have taken place.

    Does that mean that the Father could not have initiated the atonement without this taking place? Yes. In some way we don't understand, he was bound by a law that required a sacrifice for sin. But how can that be if he is all powerful? Didn't he have the power to forgive Adam's transgrression without a blood sacrifice? I'd like to see a Jehovah's Witness elder answer for that one. In fact, most Christians don't have an answer. All we know is that it was necessary. God operates under certain laws of mercy and justice, and these are laws under which he is bound.

    Again, read Isaiah 53. Also Hebrews and I John. We become joint heirs with Christ. As the Son sits upon the throne of his Father, we sit, or inherit, his throne, which is the throne of his Father. Jesus becomes like the Father and we, being joint heirs, become like Jesus and we inherit "ALL that the Father has." The Jehovah's Witnesses kind of live in a world outside that of most Christians in that they believe Jehovah is the Father, not the Son. But in describing his return, in Zechariah, he speaks of the Jews rushing to meet him. And one says unto him, "What are those wounds in thine hands?" And Jehovah replies, "Those which I received in the house of my friends."

    Jehovah judges mankind by means of the atonement and it is he who will judge the nations. And yet John states that "the Father judgeth no man, but has committed all judgment unto the Son." (John 5:22) Thus, Jesus is Jehovah. According to many of the apocraphal books, Jesus' atonement covers more than this earth, but many others. How it works out, we don't know. But we know it was something that had to happen. The "bitter cup" could not have been removed, or I think it would have been.

    Just me two cents.

  • moshe

    Good questions AiAi, that have caused you to seek answers to a Biblical paradox. However a paradox by it's very definition would be anathema to an omnipotent, all seeing God, who could not allow the existence of a paradox- and still be God, which is proof enough that the Garden of Eden story is of human origin. Besides, Humans were not immortal (read carefully) when they ate of the fruit- that is why they needed to eat of the tree of life- to keep from dying- and God kept them from it. Even, if humans had never eaten the fruit offered by the serpent (as the story goes) they would have died anyway, as they had a mortal nature. This nullifies the need for a ranson or god-man sacrifice as the story of original sin has been told for ages.

    We humans are mortal creatures- destined to die and go back to the dust of the Earth. The only thing that will survive bodily death is your dna that has been passed on to your offspring.

  • tec
    Jesus' sacrifice to save mankind really was not a sacrifice at all if he knew he would be raised up after 3 days.

    How did He know? I think one point we might miss is that He completely trusted His Father to do as He said.

    It was also a sacrifice, considering He did not have to suffer and die at all. He could have said, forget it. Not doing this. You're not worth it. My Father is wrong.

    But he didn't, and it was obvious that he did not want to suffer; that he would have preferred some other way, but there was none, and so he trusted his father.

    As for the suffering in this world... that is caused by things WE do to one another; then blame God for.


  • AiAi

    Ding - Even with taking our sins into his own body was still the same amount of sacrifice if he was going to have a heavenly one a few days later. Would it have still been such a big sacrifice of the widow giving her last 2 coins if she knew she would get a fortune in a few days? I do agree about what the real temptation was but that would only have been a temptation if the sacrifice of life was a true sacrifice of life.

    Cold Steel - I do think that god had to sacrifice Jesus because of a self-imposed law he was unwilling to break. But, I fail to see how 1 perfect person's temporary death is equal to 2 perfect person's eternal death along with a billion others life-long suffering.

    Moshe - I had never considered that they had to eat in the garden to survive ... interesting

    tec - I think after so many thousands (millions? billions? more?) of years with god that Jesus would have trusted him implicitly even with his life.

    As for the suffering in this world... that is caused by things WE do to one another; then blame God for.

    Have you heard about Japan? Or any of the other numerous natural disasters just recently? What about disease? Famine? sure man did not cause these things to happen and neither did god, but he sure could have prevented it.

  • SweetBabyCheezits

    Hi, AiAi. Good questions. Very similar to a thread started last Friday.


    Also, like you pointed out, what's the big deal about a few days absence really? Christ died for me? I think he pulled a fast one if he's alive in heaven right now. How about I sit in seclusion for three days and we just call it even?

  • WTWizard

    I do believe the "original sin" is a scam. I also believe Jesus died trying to set us free from Jehovah, not to return us to him.

    But, even if one believes that it was necessary, why do we still have to self-sacrifice? If we offer additional sacrifice, we render null and void the "perfect sacrifice, to which nothing ever need be added".

  • AiAi

    SBC - That is a real good thread, and very close to my point. I have not fully made up my mind on the bible; people like PSac do make a lot of good points concerning sunjects that im wondering about that keeps me on the fence. But with this subject I still fail too see how jesus dieing for 3 days compensates for everything.

    WTWizard -

    But, even if one believes that it was necessary, why do we still have to self-sacrifice? If we offer additional sacrifice, we render null and void the "perfect sacrifice, to which nothing ever need be added"

    That I also dont understand. Did Jesus' death save us or not? If you owe god $100 and Jesus paid $99 of it for you that is still a good gift, but it does not obsolve you of your debt

  • Ding


    Your question points out a key error in Watchtower teaching.

    In the theology of the Watchtower, Jesus made the down payment but you have to keep up the installments with your theocratic works.

    In NT theology, Jesus paid the debt in full, a 100% gift -- not of works (Ephesians 2:8-9) -- which must be received by faith.

  • superpunk

    Jesus: So you're telling me I have to go to earth, die a pretty awful death, stay dead for a few days before you revive me - then I get to be Lord of the Universe, Savior of Mankind, and worshipped for all eternity?

    God: Yeah, son, that's basically it.

    Jesus: Sign me up, Pops.

  • SweetBabyCheezits

    Jesus: Oh, Dad, almost forgot... what am I supposed to do after puberty when my testosterone levels skyrocket? They'll expect "perfection", ya know, but I'll still be human.

    God: Uhhh, yeah, we'll just omit a couple years from your biography. Nobody'll even notice. Plus it'll give you time to practice some bar tricks, like turning water into wine.

    Jesus: Sweet - sanitized history, here I come!

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