Baker Academic

Monday, June 24, 2013

Child Sacrifice: Our Latest Poll

Feel free to vote above. You are also welcome to provide your rationale by way of comment to this post.  Do please keep in mind that Christians hold that Jesus is the Son of God and most interpret his death on the cross to be sacrificial in some way. With this in mind, I would ask that you keep your comments civil and respectful.



  1. Replies
    1. I am against child sacrifice. I know that this may be an unpopular position, but I myself have never courted popularity.

      But if we're going to dabble in human sacrifice, shouldn't we start with, say, telemarketers, and see how that goes?

    2. We could also run a pilot program with people who leave their blinkers on while driving down the highway for miles and miles, Larry.

    3. I'm with Ralph Malph on this...I want to see it first, on "You Wanted to See It"!!! "A Human Sacrifice!"

  2. Wow, at the moment, 4 out of 9 voted "depends." I voted "against," because, you know, MORALITY. Quite interested to hear how people got to "depends."


  3. Sometimes kids are just awful.

  4. "Do please keep in mind that Christians hold that Jesus is the Son of God and most interpret his death on the cross to be sacrificial in some way. "

    Sometimes Christians are remarkably and frighteningly ignorant concerning the details of their own religion.

    Christianity does not hold that God, the Father, sacrificed His Son in a manner that we would mean if we used the phrase, "child sacrifice."

    Christianity holds that the Son willingly, understanding what was at stake and what it cost, volunteered to allow Himself to be murdered by wicked men in order to atone for the sins of humankind.

    The words "willingly" and "volunteered" make all the difference in the universe, and in fact, in all possible universes.

    1. Of course, I wrote those words tongue in cheek... but this brings up an interesting question:

      If the son doesn't struggle against being bound as a sacrifice (e.g. Isaac) does this change the way we credit/blame the actions of the father?

    2. phil, I'm not Christian and I am remarkably (if not frighteningly) ignorant concerning the details of your religion. But does not Hebrews 10:10 state that "we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all"? Actually, I know the answer to that question. It is "yes", at least in the NIV. And the point of Hebrews 10 (is it not?) is that Christ's sacrifice is superior to that of all others. If Hebrews compares Jesus' death to the sacrifices found in Judaism, then the comparison is (pardon my expression) kosher.

      If you read Levenson's book "The Death and Resurrection of the Beloved Son: The Transformation of Child Sacrifice in Judaism and Christianity", you'll find many examples of voluntary child sacrifice. A good example is the near-sacrifice of Isaac. According to Jewish reckoning, Isaac was 37 at the time of the Akedah. Do the math: Sarah was 90 when Isaac was born, and she died shortly after the Akedah at the age of 127. Isaac must have gone willingly to his near-death -- a 137-year old Abraham could hardly have dragged him up the mountain against his will.

      BTW phil, I should leave it to another Christian to point out to you Romans 12:3 and Ephesians 4:2. But I guess I won't.

  5. Ooh, that raises a good theological question: if the infant Jesus had been slaughtered by Herod, would his death have still redeemed humanity?

  6. I think child sacrifice falls into the category of "don't try this at home". If you are not God, then it is not an option for you.

  7. People who vote "against" don't have kids of their own. People who vote "for" don't have kids of their own anymore.

  8. If Jesus volunteered his life to save humanity from their sins than I am definitely for (a certain form) of child sacrifice!