Sunday, April 15, 2007

I Might Be Back

It's been a while. I'm just going to brainstorm some topics.

1. Is the Genesis Creation story a foretelling of the life and passion of Jesus Christ?

2. Is the Easter story a story about the creation of the world?

3. Is the world created at the crucifixion of Jesus?

4. Does the Genesis Creation story correspond to the Day of Atonement?

5. Why do adherents to the Penal Substitutionary Atonement theory insist on a vengeful god?

6. Why does Penal Substitutionary Atonement theory fit so well with consumerist society?

7. Is it a coincidence that the rise of Penal Substitutionary Atonement Theory corresponds to the rise of consumerist society?

8. Why does the Penal Substitutionary Atonement theory maintain that there is basically no consequence to sin other than that it makes "God" angry. I believe PSA fundamentally misunderstands the nature of God.

9. Why does PSA deny the idea of human wrath and human violence?

That's all right now.


SaintSimon said...

1 interesting idea
2 interesting idea
3 interesting idea
4 interesting idea
5 why do opponents of PSA misrepresent it so much? "Vengeful God" = see Deut 32:35. "Murderous" don't judge God by your own standards - as creator he has ultimate right over lfe and death. Moving people from life to afterlife is for him like deleting files on your computer for you (only thats a poor analogy 'coz he actually loves us presonally - I'm just trying to give you a sense of scale) BUt apart from all that, PSA shows how God in his love and mercy finds a way to take onto himself the necessary consequences of those aspects which you charicature as murderous and vengeful, so that we are NOT murdered or on the receiving end of his vengeance.

6 PSA also fits very well with 1st century Biblical writing, and every other society, since the fundamental issues of a disobedient human race remain.

7 I disagree that this is the case.

8 Again this is a misrepresentation. Sin makes God angry, not just becasue it is an offense against him but becasue it is an offence against one's fellow man and the rest of creation. God cares about those things, which is why he is angry. And if I sin against my brother of course the brother is angry. On the other hand, opponenents of PSA think that God doesn't get angry about these things, and that is truly bizarre.

9 PSA does not deny human wrath and violence.

We recognise that Christ is the culmination of the OT sacrificial system. Where the correct sacrifies were offered, God takes on himself the consequence of our sin. BUt when Nadab and Abihu thought they knew better, God (yes GOd) slew them.

PSA on its own is inadequate to explain the full mystery calvary. But you cannot leave it out without distorting the character of God.

You wrongly portray PSA as a new invention, but, it is only very recently that theologians have started to think that God is somehow too cuddly and nice to apply the system of justice he has prescribed.

Buck Eschaton said...

Christ is not the culmination of the Old Testament sacrificial system, His crucifixion is the destruction of that system and all other systems that are based on collective murder. Throughout the entire Old Testament there is a strain of God wanting "mercy not sacrifice".

You must remember on the Day of Atonement it is not a sacrifice to God, but Yahweh himself being sacrificed by the people to cleanse them of the consequences of their sin, to join them together. Rene Girard has written re mob lynchings and group unity. He takes their sin upon him in the great ingathering. The Atonement ritual cannot be separated from the Jubilee.
There is no violence in God, there is only human violence. God attempts to absorb our violence so that it will not destroy us.
God is not cuddly and nice, He is the one who is always hated, the ugly one, the sick one, the one cast out, the one villified, the guy who is hung up on the cross and killed.

SaintSimon said...

Your negative view of the OT sacrificial system has overtones of Gnosticism.

Your appropriation of "Mercy not sacrifce" (Hosea 6v6 quoted in Matt 12v7). It is a call for true religion of faith, as opposed to simply going through the motions and thinking it is enough. Mercy is in fact embodied in the sacrifices, because through them sins are forgiven. The sacrifice is the vehicle for the mercy. And in fact, the sacrifices particularly the passover lamb and the scape goat to mention but few are a picture of christ, and by implementing them correctly the Jews were having faith by proxy in the christ the sacrifices represent but who had not yet been made known. If you say Christ is not the culmination of the sacrifical system, you cannot call him the lamb of God.

You say there is no violence in God - you are trying to fit God into what you would like him to be rather than reading the revelation of him in the Scriptures. Try Nadab and Abihu who were slain by God when they offered unholy offerings, or Uzzah who was killed by God when he touched the ark. These are not acts of human violence. How about the flood, when GOd drowned the whole civilisation? How about the plagues where he slew the firstborn? Or the Plagues that God sent when David commisioned a census? Or the snakes he sent into the Israelite camp? Aslan is not a tame Lion (CS LEWIS).

SaintSimon said...

the above should read "your appropriation of "Mercy not Sacrifice" misses the point".

(This is the toned down version - while editing it I deleted the infamatory language but forgot to type in the new words. Sorry.)

Buck Eschaton said...

Hey thanks for the comments and for maybe providing some focus for my future writings and research. Incredibly large subject, hopefully I can put a halfway decent post together in the coming weeks.

SaintSimon said...

Hi Buck

Even my toned-down version still seems pretty aggresive on re-reading them today.

Thank you for your much more gracious responses and the powerful points raised therein.