Jesus Kills

It took a while for Jesus to comprehend his significance.

He just couldn’t catch on to the idea that he was the intersection of ages.

He felt the urge to sacrifice, sacrifice, sacrifice. Sheep scattered. Lambs languished.

Then, as he grew up, the horrible realization began to dawn on him: he was the sacrifice, and he was the one to make it.

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  • Not sure I follow where you are going with this cartoon, NP. Jesus, washing himself in the blood of the lambs? Did he ever describe himself as “the intersection of the ages?” To make sacred. A sacramentality. Your vision here eludes me. “The violent bears IT away?” I don’t get it (as you have sometimes characterized me.) I await a variety of religious response. Help.

  • We’re poor little lambs who have lost our way
    Baa, baa, baa
    We’re little black sheep who have gone astray
    Baa, baa, baa

    Gentleman songsters off on a spree
    Doomed from here to eternity
    Lord have mercy on such as we
    Baa, baa, baa

  • sheila

    Interesting….you’re right, I’m sure he didn’t realize the significance of himself till near the end and the sacrifice he had to make. However, I think he was sacrificing himself for political reasons. To bring about justice in the world he lived in.

  • The dichotomy of the Hebrew scripture God as being violent and demanding sacrifice and the New Covenant scripture God as demanding only one sacrifice, that of God’s son, is not helpful. (This cartoon also reminds me of a story in the Infancy Gospel of Thomas in which the boy Jesus curses another boy and he dies. Yikes.)

    In Micah we are given good news: “With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before God on high? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?” He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”

    Surely as an observant and knowledgeable Jew such as Jesus would have known this.

    I see what you’re getting at; perhaps there might have been a better way to depict it.

  • Elderyl

    I think the purpose of all the stories and imagery of sacrifice in the OT are meant to underscore and point to Christ’s sacrifice and its significance. For me, there is no dichotomy. I read the OT and try to visualize who the original audience was for it and for, in my opinion, its purpose as a prelude. The bottom line for me is that I am wretched and in need of redemption, but in the truth that seems to be present in paradox, God values me enough to have sacrificed to provide that redemption. I think the problem in the Church, and what lead me to this blog a few years ago, is that we continue to focus on the one side, the sacrifice, and not balance it with the value and love God gives us and wants us to give others. That its why we continue to sacrifice ourselves and others.

  • Rene

    I like your drawing of Jesus doing the sacrificing but I think that the new Testament time started with the resurrection. Jesus’s time on earth was still in the OT times and to read the Gospels as if they were in the NT times leads to misunderstanding them. We always use the Lord’s Prayer as a example of how to pray but the prayer was a response to the disciples request for how to pray about what Jesus had been talking about and he had been talking about his coming death. The Lord’s Prayer includes a request for Christ kingdom to come and that came when his sacrifice was complete. I am not being critical just commenting. I enjoy your writing and drawing.

  • James

    A very effective rendering of the two gods of the bible; this first god being the god that people expected, and the second, the God that Jesus revealed. Kudos.

  • I was just thinking of OT sacrifice this morning before I got up. Of course sacrifices were made to the g(G)od(s). That’s what was done, whether by Babylon or Israel. But the sacrifice was eaten by the priests. (We are a royal priesthood, as God’s people.) We are the body of Christ. Have we finished with sacrifice? Or do we seasonally still lead Isaac to the high place? And to what g(G)od(s) are we making that sacrifice?

  • Tom Wallek

    The sacrifices continue. The blood of his sheep covers the earth to this day. His sheep hear his voice and they follow him, learn of Him, and take up their cross. They will be known as they are known through their love.

  • Ever brave, David.

    Keep up your all-too-important work.


  • Brigitte

    The sacrifices were also eaten by the families. A celebration of forgiveness by all together. Something like turkey Christmas dinner.

    Hitchens will tell you that this is the most despicable religion he has ever heard about, how terrible and barbarian it is. (Butchering, eating meat, death, and sacrificing is something that goes on everywhere, all of the time, except perhaps among vegetarians. It is human beings who actually nailed Jesus to the cross for doing nothing wrong.)

    Hitchens’ sins are obviously not so scarlet that they require such drastic actions or illustrations.

  • “Strumming my pain with his fingers
    Singing my life with his words
    Killing me softly with his song
    Killing me softly with his song
    Telling my whole life with his words
    Killing me softly with his song

    killing me softly.”

  • LouiseM

    What I saw first was carnage. Then a little child being told something by an adult.

  • duffster

    Love your ability to show us something provokative and help us think more deeply. Thank you

  • Norm Donnan

    i remember Jesus turning water into wine, nothing about sheep into chops? i think ^james is right ,its more a picture of how the jews would have liked the messiah to act

  • Complete the sentence:

    ‘Jesus kills (actually God’s law kills), __________________________.’

    ( , but then He raises the dead to new and everlasting life, with Himself.)

  • You are just amazing.
    Always a surprise and thought-provoking cartoon.

    Little Lamb, who made thee?
    Dost thou know who made thee?…

    Little Lamb, I’ll tell thee,
    Little Lamb, I’ll tell thee.
    He is called by thy name,
    For He calls Himself a Lamb…

  • This was about as unexpected as the lyrics of Pumped Up Kicks (never trust a song with whistling in it)

    Kudos on a shocking theme, NP

  • lets go to peace…. to make smile our world

  • Nathan

    Church = Body of Christ = still slaughtering the innocent.