We may wonder, as modern people, what all the sacrifices in the Old Testament were for? Maybe the blood turns us off. Perhaps we think we don’t need them. In fact, we need an even greater sacrifice.  Sermon by Steve Swan from the 13th of March, 2016.



But it’s no sacrifice, No sacrifice, It’s no sacrifice at all.

Elton John, Sacrifice



Charis herself gave up Christianity a long time ago. For one thing, the Bible is full of meat: animals being sacrificed, lambs, bullocks, doves. Cain was right to offer up the vegetables, God was wrong to refuse them. And there’s too much blood: people in the Bible are always having their blood spilled, blood on their hands, their blood licked up by dogs. There are too many slaughters, too much suffering, too many tears.


She used to think some of the Eastern religions would be more serene; she was a Buddhist for a while, before she discovered how many hells they had. Most religions are so intent on punishment.

Margaret AtwoodThe Robber Bride



And the priest shall make atonement for him before the LORD, and he shall be forgiven for any of the things that one may do and thereby become guilty.

Leviticus 6:7



In the creation, God could say “Let there be light,” and there was light. God could say, “Let there be vegetation,” and there was vegetation. God could say, “Let there be sun, moon, and stars,” and there was sun, moon, and stars. But he couldn’t just say, “Let there be forgiveness.” That’s simply not the way forgiveness works….   Love that really changes things and redeems things is always a substitutionary sacrifice.

Tim Keller, King’s Cross