At the cross, did Christ expose and put to shame the scapegoat mechanism that the human communities have always been looking for to solidify their sense of identity – by becoming the innocent sacrifice himself?
Vs 14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;
Vs15 And having spoiled principalities and powers, HE MADE A SHEW OF THEM OPENLY, triumphing over them in it.
1 Corinthians 2 also talked about the “rulers of this age” crucifiying Jesus, which may refer to the ruling class of the first century Israel. Ephesians 6 described the wrestling against the principalities and powers, which may also refer to the ruling authorities of that day, who were operating under the scapegoat mechanism.
Do you see that scapegoating, ostracizing and slaughtering don’t work anymore?
Is the human race ready to renounce violence?
See this video below.
Interview with Rene Girard, speaking on Mimetic Desire and Conflict
I think the perspective presented in the question is important to help people understand why Christ died on the cross because his sacrifice is not meant to be a so-called payment for people’s debts to God (which makes no sense since God is Love and Love keeps no records of wrongs) but rather meant to forgive the debts people have towards themselves and one another. These debts did not exist in reality but rather in people’s consciousness because they were living under the mindset of separation and duality. As long as they live under this mindset, they will tend to live in guilt and fear, and resort to scapegoating to put blame on others because they do not see themselves as one and they keep records of their own wrongs and others’ wrongs.
Hence, the cross can be seen as a demonstration of how Christ came to destroy the works of the devil (which symbolises the false self that operates on guilt, shame and blame). Christ chose to become the final scapegoat and nailed the law to the cross, cancelling the “charge of our legal indebtedness”, not to God but to one another, so that people will no longer need to find another scapegoat to blame for their situations. The law was given by Moses, not God, as stated in John 1:17.
Yes, Jesus also disarmed the principalities and powers (ruling authorities who operated under the scapegoat mechanism) at the cross, and He did do by becoming the innocent sacrifice, co-identifying with our innate innocence and forgiving us of all trespasses that we did to him (our true self) and to one another, so that we all can experience his forgiveness and live peacefully without any more debt consciousness. As mentioned earlier, there is already no debt since we are already made in Love’s image and are blameless and perfect (complete) but not everyone knows that. So the gospel can be a means to help people realise there is no debt and they can all live in peace and harmony with themselves and others.
Last but not least, the exhortation to the Ephesians could be for them to continue to believe the gospel or good news of their true identity and experience the power of peace and love.
- Did Jesus come to help humanity break free from the cycle of mimetic desire that is marked by violence? (themysteryofchrist.wordpress.com)
- Exploring perspectives on why Jesus became the perfect scapegoat (themysteryofchrist.wordpress.com)
- Progressive thoughts on why Jesus died on the cross and whether God is retributive or restorative (themysteryofchrist.wordpress.com)
- Identity politics and “crucified identities” (realrest.wordpress.com)
- Peter Rollins – We are a fiction (themysteryofchrist.wordpress.com)