According to Christianity, Jesus was God made flesh. He came onto Earth in order to lead a life of pain so that humans who accepted him could go to heaven instead of hell in the afterlife.
Since Adam and Eve disobeyed God, they had become sinners. Their punishment was infinite suffering carrying on for generations, death and hell. Sin became human nature, ingrained into the human condition (natural sin). All of creation became marred by sin. Jesus came to suffer immense pain although he was guiltless, in order to pay the price of human sin – a karmic exchange of sorts, he paid the balance. Humanity became indebted to him, and by accepting him Christians say we are freed from our debts to enjoy heaven after the Day of Judgement.
I do not believe this story word for word. I see it as a metaphor about knowledge and experience.
Human beings are born in a state of ignorance about their very nature (‘who am I?’) and they enter into an experiment with opposite forces (good vs. bad) in order to understand themselves. They finally come to see themselves beyond dualities, come to identify their inherent nature in connection with God (source of consciousness). All creation goes through this journey in some way, and it is its own kind of struggle. BEING IGNORANT TO OUR OWN IDENTITY YET HAVING THE ABILITY TO QUESTION IT is hard. But we choose this suffering in order to experience the reward of reuniting with God and realising ourselves. This happens cyclically over and over again, perhaps through lifetimes.
Jesus was a good man who understood God. He was innocent yet he was punished – he therefore took on pain that was undeserved, which goes against the law of karma (you reap what you sow, what goes around comes around etc.) As a result, the world owes him for his pain. How the world balances this karma is unclear, because it’s very hard to see exactly how karma works. Perhaps to respect and understand Jesus’s teachings is the answer.
I don’t believe all the things about heaven and hell. Heaven and hell are all here on Earth as an experience of duality which we subject ourselves to. I only believe in knowledge versus ignorance. Jesus shed some light on the knowledge of who we are, but then a lot of interpretations were made about what he said which are not necessarily what he intended. Nevertheless, it’s up to us to create and understand what we can on this Earth, and the words of spirtual leaders can guide us in our personal (not political or social) search.