In fact he was sentenced to death, as were the two thieves who are reported to have been punished beside him. They stole, he blasphemed and the result was execution. None of them sacrificed themselves: they suffered the consequences of their actions.tam wrote:
Christ is the (high) priest, and He sacrificed Himself.
The association of Christ's execution with religious ceremony is a poor metaphor. There is no connection whatsoever between Christ's making bold statements and humans through the world doing wrong. The theory of redemption by effectively putting one's tongue out to authority and getting smacked for it is certainly an interesting product of creative minds, as is the apotheosis of Christ and the Holy Spirit into a trinity with Yahweh. In short there is absolutely no sense in "he sacrificed himself for sins." He may well have had some glorious idea of a singular messianic role, but he was a child of his time, in a world of many gods. His ideas were learned from Scripture, which he dutifully imbibed.
Well "take away" doesn't mean what you say but I suppose we can attach whatever meaning we want if we convert it into religious theory. Pirates were often pardoned, and even raised to high positions, so I suppose sinners could be forgiven if God wanted to be merciful. Of course it is ludicrous that this forgiveness by God should involve the fatal intercession of some man. God forgives, regardless of what happens in London or Rome or Jerusalem.tam wrote:
"Take away" as in gain forgiveness for; in which case there would be no judgment for those who are in Christ; their sins are 'covered over' by Him (and His blood).
But I suspect that "church" carries a private meaning here and has nothing to do with the Church that gave us Christmas and Immaculate Conceptions, the one that Jesus referred to in Matthew 16: 18.tam wrote:
Just as love can also cover over a multitude of sin; those who are in Christ have Him (and His blood) as their covering.
Do you like the metaphor "covered in blood"? I used to find "washed in the blood of the lamb" both unpleasant and silly when I spoke as a child. Later the unpleasantness passed. Go well.