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Deicide: the murder of God;
Ab
out Jesus' execution

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Various groups have been blamed for Jesus' execution:

These have included blaming:

bulletTwo generations of Jews in Judea and Galilee -- those who took part in the mob action before Pilate and their children. This belief was based on a literal interpretation of Matthew 27:25. However, responsibility did not extend to their grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc.
bulletAll Jews including:
bulletThe Jerusalem mob who demanded Jesus' execution
bulletAll other Jews in Judea,
bulletAll other Jews in the Roman Empire,
bulletTheir children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc.
bulletEven Jews born over a thousand years after Jesus' death who lived thousands of miles away from Jerusalem.

Jews as a whole were called "Christ killers." This belief justified centuries of Jewish persecution and mass murder.

bulletA few Jews: Just those present in the mob before Pilate.
bulletEvery individual who has ever committed a sin, from Adam and Eve to the present time. That of course, means every human who has ever lived. That is because most Christians believe that Jesus died for the sins of some or all humans.
bulletThe Roman Army and their methods of controlling Judea and Galilee. The army executed anyone committing an act of insurrection or terrorism, such as aggravated assault and inducing a riot in the Temple at Jerusalem at the time of Passover.
bulletJesus himself. He would have known that the penalty for insurrection was death, but committed the aggravated assault anyway.
bulletGod, because he required Jesus' death --the only mechanism by which he would or could  forgive individual humans for their sins.

These various conflicting belief systems will be described in this section -- in essays already online, or in essays planned to be posted in the future.

Topics covered in this section:

bulletOverview concerning deicide. Why study the assessment of blame?
 
bulletHow, when, where, why and by whom was Jesus executed?
 
bulletChristian groups' assessment of blame for Jesus' execution:
bulletPrior to the 20th century
 
bulletDuring the 20th century:
bulletBy modern-day liberals
bulletBy the Roman Catholic church

Other essays in this website associated with this topic:

bulletTheories of the atonement;  This is the Christian belief that Jesus life, and particularly his death, made it possible to heal the gulf between God and humanity.
bulletThe concept of transferability of sin: Punishing the innocent for the sins of the guilty. This is considered immoral by most religious and philosophical systems in the world, but forms a vital part of Christianity. 

Reference used:

  1. Eric J. Greenberg, "Jews Horrified By Gibson's Jesus Film: First mainstream group to see movie says it could foment anti-Semitism," The Jewish Week, 2003-AUG-15, at: http://www.thejewishweek.com/

Site navigation:

 Home > World religions > Judaism > here

or Home > Christianity > Personalities > Jesus > here

or Home > Christianity > Relations with other religions > here

Copyright 1998 to 2007 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally written: 1998-JUN-23
Last update: 2007-JUL-28
Author: B.A. Robinson

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