Saturday, March 22, 2008

Why The Demand For Crucifixion? - an online essay by Arthur Custance

As devotional reading for Easter week I would recommend not only this chapter (29.) from his book 'Seed of the woman' but all of part IV (The triumph over death)

Quotes and comments;

Page 12. 'Certainly in early Christian times, the cruciform as we now know it, was not commonly used as a symbol among Christians. In fact, during the first few centuries there is actually no evidence that it was used at all.

Page 13. "We have grown so used to the idea that the crucifixion is the supreme symbol of Christianity that it is a shock to realize how late in the history of Christian art its power was recognized. In the first Art of Christianity it hardly appears; and the earliest example on the doors of Santa Sabina (425 A.D.) in Rome is stuck away in a corner almost out of sight. . . . Early Christian art is concerned with miracles, healings, and with hopeful aspects of the faith like the Ascension and Resurrection.'' - Kenneth Clark

1. The late Arthur Custance is one of my favorite writers. I find him the one most helpful in explaining Christianity. I think the reason for this is simple; he's not just trying to relate something he was taught, but was trying hard to understand things... and to then to make them clear to others. I've read most of his books now, and recommend them all. (NOt that I agree with all he had to say.) I only wish there were more than a couple left I haven't read.


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