To the editor:
Let's be careful not to lump all "blood sacrifice" together as one writer recently did (DMG 6-11-13). In actuality, this was instituted by God in Genesis. Also, we're talking animal sacrifice, not human, as pagans practiced.
You may recall that God rejected tiller-of-the-ground Cain's offering. Why was only sheep-tender Abel's offering acceptable? Because a sacrifice to God required the blood of an animal. And not just any animal. It had to be perfect and without blemish.
So enraged by God's rejection of his offering, Cain killed his brother. This is the first act of murder recorded in the bible (read Genesis 4). Ah, but I'm getting off topic.
Keep in mind that Jesus' death on the cross was not an act of human sacrifice. No! It was the outright killing of a person thought to be a threat to Rome. Turns out it was the execution of an innocent person, but Jesus went willingly to his death for you and me. In this once-for-all event, God did require human perfect blood as an atonement for all of mankind's sin past, present and future. No more animal sacrifices.
Forget "apotheosis." Jesus was no mere mortal man. Mankind didn't deify Christ. Jesus was born of the Holy Spirit. He is and was God-man.
Out of the "sad and brutal...sacrificial crucifixion of Jesus 2000 years ago," came a risen and living Christ who will be coming back again. And soon.
Just as in Cain and Abel's time, Jesus Christ was the perfect human sacrifice without blemish that a Holy God required.