God is a sinner
and Jesus confirms it.
Throughout his own literary works, the god of Jews, Christians and Muslims repeatedly makes it clear that he is full of sin. The nature and number of this god varies according to each of the fore mentioned Abrahamic religions. To Christians, god is also a human being known as the poor illiterate heathen Jesus. Many Christians have no problem admitting that their god (or gods) is a sinner, but for some reason many other Christians vehemently deny this. This seems odd, as god’s own words tell us in his very own New Testament that he is. Never mind the implications the sinful nature of god has - that is cause for many other discussions. What we are addressing here is the question why so many Christians do not agree with their fellow believers. If you are a Christian and believe that the New Testament are god’s words and are the truth, then you really cannot maintain the position that god is free of sin. Let’s take a look at some of god’s own statements.
In the second letter to the Corinthians, god tells us: "God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God" [2 Corinthians 5: 21].
God has not only been sinning since his first lie to Adam, he became sin itself and thus, the biggest sinner of all eternity in a way no human could ever be. Admittedly, the verse in Corinthians is seemingly contradicted by other verses in other parts of god’s words. God contradicts himself on many occasions throughout his biography, but at least with regards to his sinful nature, he is a tad more consistent in what for Christians is the sequel to the Old Testament. In spite of what their god tells them some Christians keep denying this sinful nature of god. An example of the latter is Aaron Armstrong, who is the brand manager of “the Gospel Project”. In his article “Did Jesus ever sin?”(*) he refers to Corinthians 5:21 as if that would support his view. A better reference to his defense seems to be Hebrews 9:14 which says: “How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God…” The epistle to the Hebrews has already been firmly established as a forgery, but in spite thereof the letter is still considered god’s word and part of the canon. Even if you would argue that it is an authentic letter of Paul, it doesn’t advance your case. If we put the quoted verse into context, then it only confirms that god was a sinner.
When pseudo-Paul says “through the eternal Spirit”, he is referring to the baptism of Jesus (whether in spirit only or the baptism with water). He is thus confirming that the anointed only became unblemished through baptism and wasn’t before. The ritual of baptism precisely served to purify oneself of sin and thus enable a would-be follower of god to come closer to god or part of his favorite humans [although in practice being among the chosen people of god has only proven to be a bad deal for the humans].
Another defender of the sinless god is Bill Kochman (**), who cites a few other verses: "For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin." - Hebrews 4:15, KJV "So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation." - Hebrews 9:28, KJV "Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth…" - 1 Peter 2:22, KJV "And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin." - 1 John 3:5, KJV.
None of these verses negate Jesus’ baptism. John's gospel refers to John the Baptist yet doesn't explicitly mention Jesus' baptism. Excluding the possibility that Jesus was baptized would put this version of god's word once again in conflict with the other three words of god. The author of the gospel according to John was likely one of the first Christians who denied that god was a sinner. This pushed him to recognize the fame John the Baptist enjoyed throughout Judea, but he was careful enough in his wording to not have him baptize Jesus. It is but one example of how the gospel writers would write whatever suited them to fit their own ideas of what their god should be like or do and say.
So who do you have to believe if god tells you three times that he was baptized (in Mark, Matthew and Luke) and doesn’t say that he was in John? In any case you would find very few Christians denying that Jesus was baptized by John, specifically because it is one of the most important elements that possibly links god to an actual historical figure.
To not leave any doubt as to what the baptism was about, we will quote god’s words in the gospel of Mark, chapter 1:
"4 And so John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. 5 The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River. […] 9 At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10 Just as Jesus was coming up out of the water, he saw heaven being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove."
This clearly sums it up. God confessed his sins to John the Baptist, repented them and being subsequently absolved by the human baptizer, god was able to receive his Holy Spirit through which he could offer himself up to himself as the traditional Jewish sin offer, albeit a human sacrifice instead of the usual animal sacrifice (***). To be acceptable to god, an animal (including humans) had to be without blemish. This principle was already prescribed in the Torah and referred to in Exodus, Deuteronomy and Leviticus (****). If god therefore wanted to follow his own laws and offer himself up to himself as a sin offer, he had to become without blemish. This is why he let himself be baptized and absolved from sin by the authority of a human being. Only upon his baptism was god then able to receive his Holy Spirit, through which god the human could once again become god.
God’s baptism is a clear indication that god is no better than the rest of us humans. It seems only appropriate that god confessed his sins to John the Baptist and repented all the evil he inflicted upon the living beings in his creation. Whether his repentance was sincere and his confession of sins therefore worthy of absolution is another matter. The question that each and every "Abrahamic theist" will have to answer for themselves is whether a being that is no better than the random human serial killer or the Canaanite god Baal deserves to be worshiped as a god…assuming this inherently contradictory being is real at all.
Charles Dalet PHD, June 23, 2021
Notes, sources, references:
(*) Aaron Armstrong, “Did Jesus ever sin?”, August 19, 2020, the Gospel Project, https://www.gospelproject.com/did-jesus-sin/
(**) Bill Kochman, “Jesus was and is without sin”, Bill’s Bible Basics, Last updated March 16, 2011, https://www.billkochman.com/VerseLists/verse230.html
(***) Although the bible rarely mentions human sacrifice to god, it is clear that the deity described in it has no problem accepting them. See for instance Judges 11. Christianity as a belief system is of course completely dependent on human sacrifice as the acceptable means of redemption and many devout Catholics regularly eat human flesh when participating in their magic rituals.
“Authorship of the Pauline epistles”, Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Authorship_of_the_Pauline_epistles
“Authorship of the Petrine epistles”, Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Authorship_of_the_Petrine_epistles
(****) See for instance: Exodus 12:5; Leviticus 21:17; Leviticus 22:20; Deuteronomy 17:1
Photograph painting: 'the Baptism of Christ' by A. Verrocchio and L. Da Vinci, ca. 1475 retrieved from Wikimedia Commons