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Chapter XII.

Christ crucified is an offence and foolishness to those who declare that He was a mere man.

The shock then to your hearing and ears is that God was born, and God suffered. And where is that saying of yours, O Apostle Paul: “But we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews indeed a stumbling block, but to the Gentiles foolishness: but to them that are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the Power of God and the Wisdom of God.”25612561    1 Cor. i. 23, 24. What is the Wisdom and Power of God? Certainly it is God. But he preaches Christ who was crucified, as the Power and Wisdom of God. If then Christ is without any doubt the Wisdom of God, He is therefore without any doubt God. “We,” then, he says, “preach Christ crucified, to the Jews indeed a stumbling block, but to the Gentiles foolishness.” And so the Lord’s cross, which was foolishness to the Gentiles and a stumbling block to the Jews is both together to you. Nor indeed is there any greater foolishness than not to believe, or any greater stumbling block than to refuse to listen. Their ears were wounded then by the preaching and the passion of God, just as yours are wounded now. They thought as you think that this shocked their ears. And hence it was that when the Apostle was preaching Christ as God, at the name of our God and Lord Jesus Christ, they stopped the ears in their head, as you stop the ears of your understanding. The sin of both of you in this matter might seem to be equal, were it not that your fault is the greater, because they denied Him, in whom the passion still showed the manhood,25622562    Homo. while you deny Him, whom the resurrection has already proved to be God. And so they were persecuting Him on the earth, whom you are persecuting even in heaven. And not only so, but this is more cruel and wicked, because they denied Him in ignorance, you deny Him after having received the faith: they not knowing the Lord, you when you have confessed Him as God: they under cover of zeal for the law, you under the cloke of your Bishopric: they denied Him to whom they thought that they were strangers, you deny Him whose priest you are. O unworthy act, and one never heard of before! You persecute and attack the very One, whose office you are still holding.


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