This is an interesting thread to start, I like it. I know that there are many translations of the bible, the one most in line with the original translation is the Douay-Rheims version (which I don't have on hand right here) but, I agree with what you say, Christ acts as the scapegoat for man's sin, but only if we avail ourselves of His offering, by recognizing it and living our lives accordingly. God loves Himself most of all; since Our Lord is as the same time the Father, it is by Christ's image in us that the Father loves us despite our infinte offences to Him - thus St. Paul says that it is not me who speaks, but Christ in me. Very consuming subject matter, thank you.
I never said that the bible called Our Lord a scapegoat for humanity, I simply said that He was a scapegoat for humanity - I prefer calling a spade, a spade - a scapegoat takes on another's punishment, which Our Lord did - and as regarding the other person who commented on my "incorrect" use of the word scapegoat simply because it wasn't in the Bible, Christ IS the sacrifice for sin, we don't sacrifice to Him; we take part in His voluntary sacrifice of Himself on our behalf - that's why He calles Himself the "Lamb of God," using the example of the most perfect lamb that was offered in the old testament as a sacrifice to God the Father to make up for the offences of man. Obviously, an infinite offence cannot be made up for by finite man, thus the necessity of a sacrifice that has infinite merit, Our Lord - the old testament laws simply prepared the Jewish race for the Messiah.
"The old bit of Absolute Truth rears its head again. So far no one has been able to show any absolute truths but I'm always willing to consider one if you can produce it."
I suggest that you read St. Thomas Aquinas if you haven't already. His arguments are based on the first principles, which if you deny, you basically deny all of known reality (i.e. The Principle of Non-Contradiction: that which is cannot not be - this is an absolute truth, you can't subjectivize it and say that in some circumstance this is not known to be true, something either is, or it isn't - this is more or less the groundwork of Christianity).
"Come on Phat. What else did Jesus do during his short span of teaching except encourage folk to do their own interpretation? That was all he did, day after day, person after person, group after group. He challenged the people to think for themselves."
And yet Our Lord claimed that nobody knows the Father except through Him - that can't be left up to private interpretation, that's saying either you do it my way, the way I command you, or you go to hell. And again He states, "you are either for me, or you are against me...one cannot serve both God and Mammon." There is no room there for private interpretation. His questions to the Jews weren't intended to get them to think for themselves - it was their deadly serious theological game - if one couldn't answer a question put to them, or at least respond with another question, they lost the argument and all credibility, which happened to them time and time again - which is why all the Pharisees and Sadducees hated Our Lord. He was the one to answer the questions, He certainly did not promote subjectivism or private interpretation - that would be tantamount to ruining, from the onset, the Church He started considering that the first rule of subjectivism is that anyone can believe anything they want to. For any ogranization to be cohesive there has to be a unity - especially in the Church there has to be a unity of doctrine and prayer.
Phatboy stated: "To me, this basically means that God-understood as the monotheistic Creator of the Universe, loved all of humanity so much that He allowed His Son(Same Spirit, made flesh) to take on all of our faults, hangups, and shortcomings so that whosoever believes in Him will not spiritually whither and die."
I agreed with him on this and shortened his phrase that God allowing His Son "to take on all of our faults, hangups, and shortcomings so that whosoever believes in Him will not spiritually whither and die," to "scapegoat."
In my post: "This is an interesting thread to start, I like it. I know that there are many translations of the bible, the one most in line with the original translation is the Douay-Rheims version (which I don't have on hand right here)"
I stated this because phatboy posted several different translations - I didn't think of it as a crime to comment on types of translations.
"but, I agree with what you say, Christ acts as the scapegoat for man's sin, but only if we avail ourselves of His offering, by recognizing it and living our lives accordingly."
I said this because I agreed with phatboy on his conclusions as to what the message of the text is.
"God loves Himself most of all; since Our Lord is as the same time the Father, it is by Christ's image in us that the Father loves us despite our infinte offences to Him - thus St. Paul says that it is not me who speaks, but Christ in me."
This is my comment on how God expects man to use the sacrifice of His Only Begotten Son. What does "whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life" mean? How is that to take place? How is humanity saved through Our Lord? I don't understand what you think is not appropriate to the subject matter. Perhaps you are thinking that by taking into account other parts of Catholic doctrine, i.e. the "how" of the scriptural quote, I am not keeping to the thread? I suppose I didn't realize how regimented the threads were with regards to the subject matter. Mea culpa.
"Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son."
If humanity is condemned, it must be condemned for something - this something is the sin of Adam and Eve and whatever sin is committed after baptism - because the only thing God can take offence to is sin - it is the only real evil - perhaps you will tell me that the scripture quote doesn't say that.
I answer that interpretations of scripture rarely stand completely and totally on their own - they usually must be understood in conjunction with the entirety of doctrine and the interpretation of the bible through tradition. This is why the Catholic Church is not sola scriptura.
Moving on... "Because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only son." What does it mean to believe in the name of Christ? If one believes in His Name, one also believes that He is what He says He is, and will also believe in Him. Had the unbeliever believed in the name of Christ, the ability of Christ's name to save the world, he would not be condemned. Thus, by our association with Christ we are saved. John 3:14-15 states
"And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of man be lifted up [referring to the pole upon which the serpent was hung, so Our Lord will also be raised up on the pole of the cross]: 15 That whosoever believeth in him may not perish, but may have life everlasting."
The association is through the sacrifice of Christ - we were condemned for commiting an offence to an infinite God, thus, for committing an infinte offence. God became man and offered Himself on our behalf ("For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life) - keep in mind the doctrine of the Holy Trinity - and thus, by His infinite offering, for He is God, our infinite offence was wiped out as well as the temporal punishment owed to it.
What is the reason for Jesus Christ, God made man - why would an Infinite God so lower Himself as to become man? Evidently as He Himself claimed, to save the world. From what? From sin. How? By taking the sin onto Himself, thus, sacrificing Himself for the world. How do we avail ourselves of His sacrifice? By believing in His Name, and thus, in everything He says and by following everything He tells us to do.
However, that is all I have to say. It is not worthwhile to continue after this. I believe that I have answered as best I could your question. I'm sorry if you think it insufficient, I'm only human.:)
This message has been edited by AdminPhat, 03-17-2005 12:39 AM