Q: Please explain why Christ died for our sins. I have a difficult time explaining to my friends what real sins are and that Jesus didn’t die for our sins, he died of our sins.

A: Thanks so much for this note to us here at TruthBook.com. It is an important question that you’re asking.

One of the great gifts of The Urantia Book is the revelatory information that we are given regarding the true mission of Christ Michael of Nebadon—Jesus of Nazareth—to our lonely little planet. Most of the world—at least the Christian world—believes that Jesus died as an atonement for the sins of humanity. The Urantia Book has this to say about the atonement doctrine:

2:6.5 …The erroneous supposition that the righteousness of God was irreconcilable with the selfless love of the heavenly Father, presupposed absence of unity in the nature of Deity and led directly to the elaboration of the atonement doctrine, which is a philosophic assault upon both the unity and the free-willness of God.

98:7.1 A Creator Son did not incarnate in the likeness of mortal flesh and bestow himself upon the humanity of Urantia to reconcile an angry God but rather to win all mankind to the recognition of the Father’s love and to the realization of their sonship with God. After all, even the great advocate of the atonement doctrine realized something of this truth, for he declared that “God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself.”

Please see more about the Atonement Doctrine HERE

So, for starters, we have to understand that atonement for sin was not the purpose of Christ’s appearance and life on our planet. As you have put it, to say that Jesus “died of our sins” may be closer to the truth, as it was a result of certain sinful individuals’ decisions that the unlawful prosecution and murder of the Master was brought about. But this death of Jesus was in no way planned by God as a means of atonement…it was however, accepted by Jesus as the means by which his life would be ended, and in this acceptance, we see Jesus as the selfless, loving and forgiving person that he really is—not a passive, sacrificial lamb, but a dynamic, courageous and determined son of man and Son of God, who lived according to his belief in the righteousness of seeking and doing the will of God. And as he saw it, the will of God was to live—and to die—as a mortal of the realm. He could have escaped the horror of the death on the cross, but he chose to carry out his life—and death—as any other human being would have to do in the same circumstance. Jesus was truly a man among men, as well as a divine Son of God.

This idea is greatly expanded in “Meaning of the Death on the Cross” HERE

Incidentally, the emphasis on the death of Jesus has pretty much eclipsed the LIFE of Jesus, and this is a most unfortunate development. This is another reason that the revelation of The Urantia Book—and most especially the Life and Teachings of Jesus—is such an important revelation to humanity. The Urantia Book states (emphasis mine):

196:1.3 To “follow Jesus” means to personally share his religious faith and to enter into the spirit of the Master’s life of unselfish service for man. One of the most important things in human living is to find out what Jesus believed, to discover his ideals, and to strive for the achievement of his exalted life purpose. Of all human knowledge, that which is of greatest value is to know the religious life of Jesus and how he lived it.

This is a planet of sin and darkness—no doubt about that—but the darkness that we see here has been brought about as a result of the Lucifer rebellion and its ensuing consequences, still playing out in 2012. When Jesus came here, he successfully ended the rebellion that day on Mt Hermon…and that is yet another reason that Jesus came here. He came to reclaim the planet for himself, and to assume rulership over it—to wrest control from the archdeceivers who had for so long held sway over humanity.

Jesus himself redefined the words “sin, ” “evil” and “iniquity” for us. And these are important definitions. Please see THIS LINK to read Jesus’ own words to his apostle, Thomas, in reply to Thomas’ question regarding evil.

We see in this passage that individuals have within themselves the ability to use their free will to sin, or not to sin. Sin is an individual decision, not a mysterious, unearned, or inborn condition.

In this passage, Jesus also says:

148:4.7 “You are confused, Thomas, by the doctrines of the Greeks and the errors of the Persians. You do not understand the relationships of evil and sin because you view mankind as beginning on earth with a perfect Adam and rapidly degenerating, through sin, to man’s present deplorable estate.”

I submit that mankind today still labors under such misconceptions…He goes on to say:

148:4.8 “Men are, indeed, by nature evil, but not necessarily sinful. The new birth—the baptism of the spirit—is essential to deliverance from evil and necessary for entrance into the kingdom of heaven, but none of this detracts from the fact that man is the son of God. Neither does this inherent presence of potential evil mean that man is in some mysterious way estranged from the Father in heaven so that, as an alien, foreigner, or stepchild, he must in some manner seek for legal adoption by the Father. All such notions are born, first, of your misunderstanding of the Father and, second, of your ignorance of the origin, nature, and destiny of man.”

As to that last point, it might be helpful to you in your efforts to explain sin to your associates, to tell them about the true story of Adam and Eve, from whom most Christians believe the concept of Original sin came about—the very sin that Jesus is supposed to have atoned for.

Adam and Eve were not the first humans—not beings born perfect who ate from a forbidden tree, and then banished from that perfect life—not beings whose sinful legacy has tainted the whole of humanity from that day to the death of Jesus on the cross.

The story of Adam and Eve is a complex saga which comprises the 3rd epochal revelation of God to mankind, and far from the simplistic fable that is contained in the book of Genesis. It is true that Adam and Eve’s downfall was a result of evil, but that evil was not passed on to humanity as a birthmark needing purification by the shedding of the innocent blood of Jesus. True, their mission was interrupted and was not wholly successful, but humanity is not in need of redemption from their sin.

So, to say that “Jesus died for our sins” is not a correct statement. However, The Urantia Book does correctly name Jesus as “savior.”

188:4.7 Though it is hardly proper to speak of Jesus as a sacrificer, a ransomer, or a redeemer, it is wholly correct to refer to him as a savior. He forever made the way of salvation (survival) more clear and certain; he did better and more surely show the way of salvation for all the mortals of all the worlds of the universe of Nebadon.

And in this passage we also see that, while Jesus lived here and died here, his bestowal was not only for the beings of this one planet, but for “all the worlds of the universe of Nebadon.” His mission was a reclamation of his entire universe which had been involved in rebellion. We can be very happy that our insignificant little planet was the arena which Michael chose to reveal the loving personality of God and to establish the Kingdom of Heaven in the hearts of his created beings, but his mission was far larger and far more profound than the erroneous atonement doctrine would have us believe.

I hope you will forgive me for this very long reply, but your question speaks to the very heart of Christianity, and also to the very heart of the truth of Jesus’ true mission to our planet. We here at TruthBook have no grudge against Christianity, as Christianity is pretty much the backbone of the religion ABOUT Jesus, and has served humanity for many centuries. But, since the appearance of The Urantia Book, we have a fuller and far more replete accounting of the activities and purposes of the Son of God, as well as the very inspiring account of the religion OF Jesus, as he lived it. It is that truth that we hope to further…among Christians, and non-Christians alike. The truth of Jesus’ life belongs to all mankind.

Thanks so much for bringing up this very important question. I hope that my reply has been of some help to you today, and that you might be inspired to follow the links that I have placed in it, so that you can know for yourself—and help your associates to know—the real story.

Date published:
Author: Staff