Lamb of the Free (7)

In this section, we finnish up Rillera’s thoughts on what the Levitical sacrifices are not.

There is no connection between the suffering of the animal and the sacrifice, because an animal is killed quickly and humanely, because if an animal is blemished it is no longer fit for sacrifice. The focal point is on the ritual performed transforming the death of the animal to non-killing, not the animal as an object of wrath.

Death of the animal is never seen as substituting, neither is it taking on the suffering others deserve. Rillera notes:

  • This is significant because we can now see that when it comes to sacrificial understandings of Jesus’s death in the NT , these never occur in the context of Jesus’s sufferings and passion . Put another way : when Jesus’s sufferings and / or death qua death are the topic , then sacrificial metaphors are avoided (40, see also note 69 on pg 46 on Hebrews)

One thing I’ll be interested to see is if Rillera brings into focus the brutal death of the scapegoat and how this may reflect making conspicuous the effects of our sins and hence opening our eyes and being a catalyst for changing our path (metanoia).