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How did the early Christians cope with the shame of the crucifixion? This intriguing book says that the only way possible was to transform the shame into the glory of the resurrection. The author, a lawyer with a degree in theology, traces how Jesus' followers handled the repeated traumas of the crucifixion, the destruction of the temple, the great fire of Rome, and the expulsion from the synagogue. Their response was to gloss over the horrors of reality and to rewrite the Old Testament into the New to make the crucifixion a fulfillment of prophecy. In addition, only when the actual punishment was banned by Constantine was depiction of the crucifixion conceivable as art. Engaging and well written, the book incorporates modern scholarship in an accessible way. An appendix looks at the parallels between Aeschylus' Prometheus Bound and the passion narrative. In all, this is a title meant for the thinking person, especially during Lent. It will also provoke lively discussion in Bible study or prayer groups.
Buy The Trauma of the Cross: How the Followers of Jesus Came to Understand the Crucifixion by Damian Barry Smyth from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9780809139088 & 0809139081
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