Yes! Love it!
Concerning the question in the original post, we find that the “heathen” nations throughout the world offered sacrifices to appease their gods so that the people wouldn’t be harmed. The sacrifices were a substitute for the people so that their gods would be satisfied with these sacrifice so that it wouldn’t be necessary to punish the people with whom they were angry.
For example, the Sumerians who originated from the cradle of civilization between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, offered appeasing sacrifices to gods, even substitutionary sacrifices.
Here is an extract from their liturgy:
“The lamb is the substitute for humanity; he has given up a lamb for his life; he hath given up a lamb’s head for the man’s head.”
The portion of the Sumerian liturgy quoted above was taken from C. Leonard Woolley’s book The Sumerians, page 126. Woolley added, “and here we have a relic of human sacrifice such as was actually found in the graves of the prehistoric kings at Ur.”
It seems that when a Sumerian person was chosen as a sacrifice of appeasement to the gods, he could substitute a lamb, and thereby escape death himself.
The Israelites were notorious for imitating the ways of the nations round about them! God frequently warned them with words such as “Learn not the ways of the heathen!”
I began to write a booklet entitled The Supreme Sacrifice of Jesus Christ. The booklet is unfinished, but I posted some of the chapters on other forums. If you are interested you can read chapter 3 called Offerings and Sacrifices by clicking on the link below:
I love this, it would be great up here, especially in the winter.
I never encountered the song that started this topic.
Lets see, I think there is one like :
Oh the love that drew salvation's plan Oh the Grace that bought it down to man Oh how great the gulf that God did span At Calvary. Mercy was there and grace flowed free Pardon there was sanctified for me There my burdened soul found liberty At Calvary
Its been awhile, so thats the most I can remember. But I like it better than the topic one.
Excellent article, Paidion. Thanks for sharing it! I didn’t read all the comments because there were just so many, but I’ll bet they would have been good also.
Hi Lizabeth and Kelli
Glad you like the Julian lyrics (Sydney Carter also wrote ‘Lord of the Dance’)
The Julian song is so very simple – but I guess its power is in its simplicity. I’ve just done a Google search for Julian of Norwich stuff and have come up with the following -
It seems that there have been a number of recordings of Sydney Carters song – and you can here excerpts from the MP3 catalogue of these here -
The version by John O’Connor, Shusha and others from Lovely in the Dances is my favourite.
The only version I can find of the song on Youtube is a bit plodding and ponderous to my mind, and the recording isn’t great - but you can still hear the melody OK. You can find it here -
And I really like the charming video on YouTube of a an enthusiastic and affectionate young American woman interviewing sweet and shy Sister Pamela in Julian’s cell in Norwich Cathedral (about Julian) – which you can find here
Yes, but I believe this is down to a mistranslation and reading too much into an Old Testament prophecy.
This is a fantastic study of Isaiah 53
Also, be sure to read the first comment by Fr. Stephen De Young
I don’t go with this. It makes out God to be like one of the teachers at the really horrible boarding school I went to. They felt that they had to punish someody and it didn’t much matter if they got the right person or not.
I much prefer what I called the JC/JCB model. (In the UK a back-hoe loader is called a JCB after JC Bamford, one of the largest manufacturers.) There are several passages that suggest that while he was in the tomb Jesus “Harrowed Hell”, that he broke it open and freed the captives.
I have this irreverent image of Satan watching in horror as Jesus turns up with some heavy machinery and proceeds to demolish hell from the inside. That’s more the sort of thing that “really happened”.
From my understanding of God’s wrath in scripture as prophesized. I do believe that it was satisfied AD70.
The concept of penal substitution to satisfy the wrath of God is a late comer. This understanding was non-existent in the early church. In the middle ages, it arose in the Roman Catholic Church and continued in the teachings of its daughters, the Protestant churches.
The early church as well as the early catholic church did not hold this view. Nor does the present Orthodox Church, which is more or less a continuation of the early catholic church.
There is an excellent teaching by Mikhail Hany, a Coptic Orthodox teacher concerning the significance of Christ’s magnificent sacrifice. If you find his teaching captivating (as I did) you can listen to all 12 parts. Below is a link to
Here are the titles of the 12 parts:
- God through human language.
- Justice, Theosis, Punishment, Discipline
- Mercy, Forgiveness, Judgment, Hell
- Equation of Life and Death
- Sacrifices in the Old Testament
- St. Athanasius on Sin, Death, and Redemption
- St. Gregory the Theologian and St. John Chrysostom
- The Coptic Church Liturgy and St. Cyril on Theosis
- Western Theories of Redemption (Anselm, Luther)
- Criticism of Westen Theories
- Criticism of Westen Theories and Conclusion