NO WORSHIP WITHOUT SACRIFICE (Skin in the Game)
This is a picture of a church altar in Maaloula (St Sergius/Mar Sarkis) I saw a few decades ago, with a striking feature: it has a drain for blood. This altar came from a reconverted pagan temple used by early Christians. Pre Nicea (4th C) Christians recycled altars. Altar in Arabic/Aramaic is still Mazba7 from “DB7=ritual slaying by cutting the guttural vein”. And Korban is still used for sacrament (the Semitic word for sacrifice).
Well, in the Mediterranean pagan world, no worship without sacrifice. The gods did not accept cheap talk. This also applied to the Temple of Jerusalem.
Somehow Christianity removed the idea of such sacrifice under the notion that the Christ sacrificed himself for others; but there is still a simulacrum with wine representing blood, at the close of the ceremony flushed in the piscina (the drain).
So in a Judeo-Christian place of worship, the focal point, where the priest stands, symbolizes Skin in the Game. The notion of belief without tangible proof is not existent in history.
Hebrews 9:22 ” And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.” (et omnia paene in sanguine mundantur secundum legem et sine sanguinis fusione non fit remissio)
(Credit Elisabeth Thoburn)
NO WORSHIP WITHOUT SACRIFICE (Skin in the Game), Posted to Facebook by Nassim Nicholas Taleb on Sunday, August 9, 2015