Bernie: Russ, I think you are being inconsistent. Either human sacrifice is evil or holy.
If you say it is evil, then god commanded Abraham to do evil. It would be like asking him to rape a woman... it is that bad, only worse, as I think murder of an innocent is worse than rape of an innocent.
If it is good, as in the case of Jesus being a human sacrifice for god, then you can't claim it was evil when Abraham was commanded by god to do it.
Can you see the inconsistency?"
God is omniscient. He knew that Abraham would not kill Isaac.
God is both just and merciful. Sin is transgression of the character and nature of God. The only way that God can be perfectly just to His character and also extend mercy to sinners is for someone (or something) equal to His character to pay for the offense against His character.
If God forgave sin without requiring redemption then He would be unjust and violate His character by showing mercy. On the other hand if God honored His own intrinsic just-ness (fairness) and did not forgive sin, then He would violate His characteristic of being merciful.
Why are you trying to change the subject away from Isaiah 53? Can you or can you not explain all the reasons I gave earlier to prove that the suffering servant could not have been national Israel? Can you or can you not explain why your view of the suffering servant, national Israel, cannot be a substitute for itself.
Are you conceding the I won the debate on Isaiah 53? Do you now want to go elsewhere?
Jesus is very much an exception to the rule for several reasons. (1) Sinners did not offer Jesus in order to appease God and (2) Jesus freely offered Himself to be a kinsman-redeemer when the Godhead decided to create mankind with a freewill. Christianity is the only religion that gives God a reason to be consistent with His own character and also forgive sin.