My childhood Bible teachers wouldn’t like the wording of this question, but they would have to answer YES. If I break the rules, God has to kill me. Because God is very fond of his rules and gets extremely offended when they get broken. Wrath and furious anger and all that. But luckily, Jesus took the bullet for us. God got to kill Jesus on the cross, so he feels better now, and no longer needs to kill me.
A friend asked an insightful question: What did Jesus accomplish on the cross that we couldn’t accomplish for ourselves? If he wasn’t appeasing some angry deity, what WAS he doing?
My short answer: He was entering the grave to find the lost human race and bring them home to Papa. He had spent 33 years getting himself deep into the fantastic crap-fest that is the human species, weaving his own relationship with God into the very fabric of humanity’s soul. And because death is part of human life, he entered into it so that even THAT would be redeemed. Because you can’t rescue someone if you don’t first go ALL the way down to where they are. But on the third day He rose again and ascended to the right hand of the Father.
And the aforementioned human crap-fest? It rose with him.
Why is this idea jarring to us? Christians have little trouble believing that Adam could doom the human race to death. Why is it so hard to think that Jesus could doom us to life? Is Adam a bigger player in the universe than Jesus?
FOR FURTHER READING: http://baxterkruger.blogspot.com/2008/03/on-death-of-jesus.html