Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Folly of the Cross

Doing some research for an upcoming sermon on the crucifixion narratives in the gospels I was reminded of this well-known quote from Origen's sparring partner, Celsus, critiquing the folly of Christian confidence in the crucifixion of a carpenter as the means of salvation:
"Now what drunk old woman would not be ashamed to utter such things in a whisper, even when making stories to lull an infant to sleep?" (Contra Celsum, 6.34)
No doubt, contemporary fascination with the crucifix as a decorative ornament makes it easy to forget that the cross was intended as a torturous, humiliating means of political execution. 

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