Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Is Mankind depraved - or is it just me?

According to Matthew (27:46) and Mark (15:34), when Jesus was dying on the cross, he said these words:

"My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"
Did God leave him alone? If he did, why?

The teaching that this was the point at which Christ took on Sin and was separated from God has never settled well with my soul. God abandons us when we sin. That's what this teaching implies. Does that sound right to you?

Why does the more detailed account of Luke not include this outcry, but instead several other words from the Savior?

I keep coming back to this when I consider what it was exactly that Christ was asking God to forgive "them" of in Luke 23:34.

"Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing"
Was it gambling for His garments because the Roman guards were only doing what had been prophesied? Was it for the Jews who had condemned Him? Was it for His disciples who had gone into hiding and were denying Him? Was it for you and I, the world, for every sin we had/are/would commit?

These words of forgiveness seemed to be spoken very soon after Christ was nailed to the Cross, while the guards and the crowds that had demanded His death were still there. Wouldn't they too feel guilt very soon, when they KNEW? Didn't you feel guilt when you KNEW?

What also comes with guilt?

Godly sorrow; self-pity?

When you are innocent, or not, does a guilty verdict make it seem as though you have been abandoned, too?

And what was the punishment He endured? It was not death - death was the result; the consequence - the punishment was the crucifixion. By refusing to defend Himself, Christ accepted the verdict of guilt laid upon Him by man. By accepting that guilt, He knew death that would come with it.

Jesus perfectly illustrates that guilt does not equal abandonment and that death is overcome.

Satan would have us think otherwise.

So would some Christians.

There is no reason to listen if I cannot hear.
Just Another Voice,


karen said...

Still awesome and insightful.

Kc said...

Sis I’m sure I’m missing your point but then your perspectives are always a wonderful challenge to me. ;-)

Are your thoughts in reference to Christ’ sacrifice and atonement?

Do you think He accepted guilt for the charges of blasphemy being made against Him?

Is it safe to assume that the death that you’re referring to is the physical death?

Sorry for being so dense!

Another Voice said...

KC, I'm never quite sure how to take it when you refer to my "challenging perspectives." I am certain your density is far less than mine and only slightly more than Mother Theresa's. :)

"Are your thoughts in reference to Christ’ sacrifice and atonement?

I guess I am, in some way, questioning if it is an atonement. I've got this thought stuck in my head that it is more an example. I'm wondering if an atonement was really necessary. I mean God could forgive whenever He wanted to, couldn't he? He asks us to do it. So maybe He does. Maybe it's our guilt that leaves us feeling alone and unloved - hopeless. But it's false.

The more I stay in the light (open with God and others about my sinful nature) I find I am less struck with the worldly sorrow of guilt and self-pity and the more accepting I am that God truly loves me. Of course that leads me to more frequent success in putting that sinful nature to death.

"Do you think He accepted guilt for the charges of blasphemy being made against Him?"

That's what I am trying to figure out. Just as we are before Satan, Christ was before false accusers. Just like God found righteousness in Job for not defending himself of those types of accusations, Jesus also refuses to defend Himself. I don't think that makes Him guilty. And yet, He has the same reaction we do to guilt - feeling distant from God. So, I'm trying to see if there was something He felt guilty for. Could He have felt guilty for making those in the crowd murderers by what He was accepting?

"Is it safe to assume that the death that you’re referring to is the physical death?"


KC, I don't think you're missing my point. I am not sure I have a point. I just have a lot of questions, and traditional religion doesn't seem to want me to ask them. Non-traditional religion seems pretty uncomfortable, too.

Is it okay to say I am stretching my faith wings out again?

Kc said...

Sis you’re too kind. Honestly I appreciate how your perspectives always force me to reach outside of myself for understanding.

I can also appreciate that your questions are not always welcomed. Not everyone wants to be challenged. ;-)

I’m sure you know that I look to the scriptures for my answers though I’m never satisfied I fully understand the scriptures. I could discuss my present understanding on this with respect to your questions if you like. To be honest I don’t know of any other reliable or authoritative source on these topics than the scripture.

Another Voice said...

"...I don’t know of any other reliable or authoritative source on these topics than the scripture."

Neither do I, KC!

Honestly, I am having a hard time pinpointing where it is that the Spirit is leading me in these thoughts, so I am quite scattered. But - I KNOW the Spirit is leading TO scripture, without a doubt. I would love to hear your voice in these matters!

Kc said...

Sis I am very grateful to be able to discuss all these things with you. You’ve covered quite a bit of ground here and I’m glad you’ve decided to take it a step at a time. Still I appreciate seeing how you’ve related these things and in that light I would offer a couple of observations.

I would understand that it is we who abandon God when we sin and not the contrary. If my understanding is correct then it may prove somewhat helpful when discussing your first series of questions.

With respect to guilt I think it may be helpful to make distinction between emotional guilt and the state of condemnation that follows judgment.