If God is perfect and needs nothing from us, then why would he demand a human sacrifice to pay for human sins?

By December 24, 2014 10 Comments

Full Question

If God is perfect and needs nothing from us, then why would he demand a human sacrifice to pay for human sins? Isn’t the very definition of forgiveness not to ask for a payment?


If the sacrifice of Jesus were merely a human sacrifice, it wouldn’t have meant much. But Jesus was not just a man; he redeemed us as God. We have to think outside of the box here—the human box. We are inclined to think that eating a piece of fruit is not all that bad. But the sin of Adam was a sin against an infinitely good God. God is not just a bigger version of us. So the sin was a great offense. Nevertheless, Jesus could have simply willed our Redemption and all would have been fine. He is God, after all. While it was the Father’s will that Jesus suffer and die for us, Jesus concurred with him: “No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord” (John 10:18). He chose to suffer and die to show us something of what his infinite love means. Since we have no experience of anything infinite in our lives, the word infinite is just an abstraction. But the death of God on a cross is no abstraction. Good Friday demonstrates for us something of how unfathomable his love is. That God would choose to undergo such an experience on our behalf shows us how beyond the range of our feeble intellects his love actually is. Forgiveness is not to ask for payment. We could never pay him for such love.


  • solamente del valle says:

    That response did not answer the question. I never thought of that till now. Why would God want us to sacrafice a living being when one of the commandments is thou shalt not kill. Or does that mean only for humans

  • Noel David says:

    The question itself is unfair on God. In no way did God ever DEMAND a human sacrifice from any of us mortals to atone for our sins/wrongdoings…. And there is NO MORTAL in the whole universe who is fit to atone for the enormous sins/wrongs/injustices/wickedness/killings etc. etc. that we have been continuously committing from the days of Adam/Eve/Cain etc. etc….
    God in His own gracious manner decides to save the very people who disobeyed Him (went against Him or whom He banished from Paradise for their disobedience) by laying down His (Jesus is God who became Man) life to save us from eternal damnation…. That’s His way of showing how much HE loves us and how much He desires to save us from the punishment that awaits us for continuously sinning and commiting all sorts of injustices, crimes, evil deeds and bloodshed etc. etc…. Now, how many leaders or parents or employers or couples or individuals would do so to save those who hurt them, went against them or disobeyed them? God’s love for us sinful or unfaithful people is beyond compare….

  • I think it is important to remember that our Lord’s death on the cross is a sacrifice, yes, but more importantly is the establishment of a new covenant. a transformation or renewal of the Jewish Passover into the Eucharist from which sins can be forgiven, and which was given to us by Him to allow us to be in communion with the Father. The Eucharist and the other Sacraments allow us to “partake in the divine nature” and this is the will of God for us. These could not be without the crucifixion.

  • Nidal says:

    The sacrifice of Lord Jesus christ on the cross is the only way to combine mercy with just, he paid for our sins and died on our behalf which is just and released us through his mercy to give us eternal life. God would accept the sacrifice of a holy person with no sin and that can be no one except Jesus. Thank you Lord.

  • Mary Frances says:

    God did NOT require the SACRIFICE. We did as proof of the love of God.

    • Eric says:

      Amen. From Christopher West’s “Theology of the Body for Beginners”:
      Christ’s life proclaims: “You don’t believe God loves you? Let me show you how much God loves you. You don’t believe that God is ‘gift’? This is my body given for you (cf Luke 22:19). You think God wants to keep you from life? I will offer myself so that my life’s blood can give you life to the full (cf John 10:10). You thought God was a tyrant, a slave-driver? I will take the form of a slave (cf Phil 2:7); I will let you ‘lord it over’ me to demonstrate that God has not desire to ‘lord it over’ you (cf Matt 20:28). You thought God would whip your back if you gave him the chance? I will let you whip my back to demonstrate that God has no desire to whip yours. I have not come to condemn you but to save you (cf John 3:17). I have not come to enslave you but to set you free (cf Gal 5:1). Stop persisting in your unbelief. Repent and believe in the good news (cf Mark 1:15)”.

  • jun sayson says:

    For every sin justice must be serve to attain genuine reconciliation. Without Christ sacrifice the injustice done by Adam, Eve and by us will forever lingers, thus we will be forever away from God. Away from God means…

  • kokoaung says:

    l try my best for perseverence in my in hope in God

  • Joe Mwangi says:

    This question is at the heart of the Gospel , let me answer your question from a protestant understanding of scripture.
    Since God is Holy , righteous and just He CANNOT forgive sin until an atonement for sin is made (Hebrews 9 :22).God’s justice and the full penalty for sin must be satisfied so that God is “just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus” Romans 3:26.Only our Lord was able to save us because He had no sin (2 Cor 5:21) and therefore fulfilled the requirements of God’s law.

  • (Yeratel) Harrison K. says:

    Why don’t just asking this question directly to GOD? As HE is holding the key of answers to every questions To me is, GOD knew what is HE doing and I prefer not to know. Doesn’t mean that I don’t care what is HIS plan for the universe but it is because it is HIS rights. All I need to do for my own part is, to pray to HIM & hoping that HE may always protect me from any such evilness & provide me a place where I can be always being nearby HIM whereby it is in HEAVEN. Just believe that all HE is doing or planning for those human race are all to turn us to be mature & to approach HIM closer. Oh my HEAVENLY FATHER, WE LOVE YOU. Please show us the way that we can serve you just as the way our LORD JESUS CHRIST did. AMEN!

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