why did the sacrafice have to be so BRUTAL

by Tater-T 35 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • Island Man
    Island Man

    Ancient religions throughout the earth have been practicing human and animal sacrifice for centuries before the advent of Judaism and christianity and its not hard to see how the offering of sacrifices arose.

    Ancient people attributed agency to deadly events like droughts, storms, volcanic eruptions, etc. They assumed that a god or gods were behind them and brought them to take human lives. So if the gods bring horrible disasters to get human lives how do you stop the gods from bringing the disasters? Simple. You find a way to give the gods what they want - human lives - so that they would have no need to bring the disaster to get them. So you offer the gods sacrifices. True, lives are still being taken. But the difference with sacrifices is that the community gets to feel like they're at least in control of the situation. They can determine who dies and when they die instead of having to be in the powerless situation of a god unexpectedly bringing a disaster to kill god knows how many, who and in what manner.

    But then another problem arises - the amount of people killed in natural disasters are invariably more than the amount of people that will be sacrificed to avert them. Why would a god accept the death of one person served up on a platter when he can claim a hundred lives in a flood? This idea likely troubled the ancients. So how did they resolve it? They don't just offer up anyone. They offer up the best among them- the most beautiful, the most strong, the most virtuous - the virgin - the one or few who are the most perfect in the community. Surely the gods would prefer to have a few guaranteed high quality lives served up to them on a platter rather than working to take lives in a natural disaster where persons of all sorts die with no guarantee that they'll get a life of good quality. And thus the notion of having a suitable sacrifice of high quality - an unblemished lamb, an innocent, chaste virgin, etc.

    Sacrifices also work for the belief that the gods bring disasters to punish the people for their sins. Instead of the whole community being punished for their sins by the gods, why not have one individual bear the sins of the whole community and be punished on behalf of the whole community? But if this person is himself a notorious sinner then it would stand to reason that he deserves punishment for his own sins. So perhaps when the gods are finished with punishing him for his own sins there wouldn't be any of him left to be punished on behalf of the rest of the community and the gods will still punish the community for its sins. So to resolve this issue, the one who is to be sacrificed to the gods for the sins of the community, has to be one who is innocent enough that his own sins are not so numerous that he has no room left in himself to also carry the sins of the community.

    Killing the sacrificial victim in an especially slow, painful and brutal manner could also have been thought up as a way of justifying the death of one man or woman for a whole community. Let the gods see the lone victim experiencing the brutality equivalent to experiencing a thousand deaths and maybe the gods will agree that his death is more than sufficient to compensate for the hundreds of deaths that the gods would have otherwise taken by some natural calamity.

    The whole concept of the ransom sacrifice integral to christianity and the animal sacrifices of Judaism go way, way back in time much earlier and more primitive pagan cultures who devised the concept of sacrifices through superstitious beliefs.

  • kaik

    From Judaism point of view, Jesus sacrifice is invalid and does not make any sense. It never made sense to me either. Jews do not believe that someone can pay out anyone sin, but only you are responsible for your own sin and inability to uphold the Laws.

    We also need to look into the era, when Roman ruled the known world and their execution methods were extremely harsh, brutal, and painful. Idea that person should not suffer through execution is rather modern under influence of the French Revolution and Enlightened thinking. However, until that time for thousands of years, executions were extremely brutal. Modern era starting with a French Revolution needed more efficient way to dispose thousands of people, thus less painful methods were implemented. Guillotine in France between 1792-1795 executed around 35000 people. It would be much more difficult to end lives of so many people if government would have to break victims on wheels.

  • Ruby456
    thanks Kaik, for reminding me about how low we can sink and that when an ethical darkness descends a death of God occurs. Lots of different world views then emerge. Here are three

    1. Christ rose from the dead and this makes moral sense to many people via a kind of Hegelian dialectic where depravity and death cancel each other out and then from this comes a fresh start.

    2. Gandhi puts it a little differently as he says each person needs to be death oriented (or prepared to die for one's principles) rather than life oriented (which translates as seeking too much security in this life) for rebirth.

    3. for a Jewish view see what they say about the holocaust .. feeling abandoned by God and left bereft and in shame

  • Ruby456
    mind you tater, for us who are suffering from too much dying for our principles, I say enjoy what has come out of the darkness as there were enough people around at the time to say enough of this madness and brutality.
  • prologos

    during a brutal execution, a level 10 pain could be experienced, but even during "natural" dying, no drawn out longer and longer, level 2.3 pains can be present for years. being old is not for the faint hearted, ask any senior.

    Since the 'Atonement Sacrifice' is based on the talking snake story, and some satisfaction came from that meal. is that why misery has to be added to the act of dying, slow or fast? Are not all humans dying involuntarily anyway?

  • paranoia agent
    paranoia agent
    Back then most executions were brutal. Crucifixion is messed up but so was the wheel. As for a reason, well the bible is like a bunch of jigsaws that don't fit together, and when people try to fit them together you get incoherence. But hey who am I to know the mind of god (this is commonly known as an argument from ignorance).
  • bellasmile

    Oh it was soooo brutal! Waaah! I can not believe it! History is soooo scary!

    Define brutal? It was exactly on par for that time in history. I guess you can not believe ISIS burns people alive throws them from a building and stones them to death either? Are you going to run around erasing it in the history books? Oh I guess you will believe it if it is on an episode Dexter. Never mind, myyy baaad, lmao!

  • paranoia agent
    paranoia agent
    is this directed at me? Which bit of - most executions were brutal - don't you understand?
  • Heaven

    Christianity's history is quite brutal. Brutality is a key control mechanism. It is also a validation mechanism. It eases the right Christian's feel they have to hate Jews.

  • moomanchu
    I always thought the brutality was Satan trying to break him.

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