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If the Father and Son are both God, and the Son sacrificed himself to the Father, wouldn't that conclude that God sent himself inside of Mary and then sacrificed himself to himself? Now God saving us from himself is logically sound, but as for the previous sentence I have a hard time understanding the sacrifice issue. Thanks.

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    The Son sacrificed himself on behalf of fallen humans, not merely as an offering to God.
    – mojo
    Feb 24, 2015 at 18:15
  • 2
    Help me understand your question better. Are you asking for a better explanation of Sacrificial Atonement than your current understanding?
    – fгedsbend
    Feb 24, 2015 at 19:26
  • If you comprehend trinity, then it should not be problem to understand it.
    – shakAttack
    Feb 24, 2015 at 19:53
  • @shakAttack I understand the Trinity doctrine plenty, yet I still do not know what exactly the question is asking.
    – fгedsbend
    Feb 25, 2015 at 1:36
  • 1
    @shakAttack - Isn't the Trinity supposed to be Incomprehensible?
    – ShemSeger
    Feb 25, 2015 at 4:12

2 Answers 2

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Christian theology has long distinguished 'being' and 'person' God is 'one being' but there are three three persons who are that one God. Take for example the Nicene Creed:

I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all worlds; God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God; begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father, by whom all things were made.

Who, for us men for our salvation, came down from heaven, and was incarnate by the Holy Spirit of the virgin Mary, and was made man; and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate; He suffered and was buried; and the third day He rose again, according to the Scriptures; and ascended into heaven, and sits on the right hand of the Father; and He shall come again, with glory, to judge the quick and the dead; whose kingdom shall have no end.

And I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of Life; who proceeds from the Father [and the Son]; who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified; who spoke by the prophets.

And I believe one holy catholic and apostolic Church. I acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins; and I look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.

Notice how it express a belief in one God, but also that there are three persons (Father, Son and Spirit) who are that one God.

When it comes to the incarnation, the father sent the son.

When it comes to the cross the son died to satisfy the wrath of the father.

So, whilst in one sense it is true to say God sacrificed himself to appease his wrath - that action was possible because God is trinity.

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  • Welcome to the site. We are glad you decided to participate. Here are some meta posts about this site to help you learn how we do it here: What Christianity.StackExchange is (and more importantly, what it isn't) and How we are different than other sites I hope to see you post again soon. Please also keep in mind that I and other users are willing to help you, so ask us anything if you need help.
    – fгedsbend
    Feb 24, 2015 at 19:28
  • Personally, I would have waited to answer this question because I don't think it's particularly clear, but you did a good job nonetheless, considering the circumstances.
    – fгedsbend
    Feb 24, 2015 at 19:29
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The Father and the Son are two distinct persons who are con-substantial -- of same nature ( John 10:28-30;Hebrews 1:2-8).

John 10:30 (NIV) I and my Father are one.

The Father gave his only begotten Son to the world whom he so loved ( John 3:16) while the Son gave himself for us because he loved us ( 1 John 3:16). This is both an atonement and sacrifice.

John 3:16 ( KJV) For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son so that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life.

The Father is not the Son. The Son is not the Father. The Father sent the Son. The Son is sent by the Father ( 1 John 4:9). Both are the same God because both have the same nature.

John 1:1 is helpful on this. It says that the Word was God with God in the beginning.

John 1:1 (KJV) In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God.

The Father himself did not die on the cross but His Son did ( Philippians 2:6-11).

What this shows is the Triune nature of God, that there are three persons in one Godhead: Father, Son and Spirit( Matthew 28:19).

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  • Since my tone was a bit harsh, I shall ask politely. Please prove that Matthew 28: 19 refers to the Trinity and not three separate entities, specify that it is your personal interpretation or remove the statement. Feb 25, 2015 at 19:16
  • @gideonmarx, Matthew 28:19 speaks of three distinct persons who have one and same name YHWH. God's name is expressive of his eternal nature ( Exodus 3:14). So by having one name, the three persons possess one nature. This one nature is spiritual [i.e. immaterial,indivisible](John 4:24)that is why the three persons are not three gods but one.
    – R. Brown
    Feb 26, 2015 at 3:16
  • My apologies my Bible says, "baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit." I will try to find a translation that says, "in the name of YHWH the Father, YHWH the Son and YHWH the Holy Spirit." What translation have you got and where did you get it? Feb 26, 2015 at 7:19
  • @gideon, May i ask you what is the name of God the Father?
    – R. Brown
    Feb 27, 2015 at 17:19