Page by page, paragraph by paragraph, Fleming Rutledge’s dynamic work, The Crucifixion, works deeper into my mind and spirit. The work of the cross is being deepened by her incredible research and insight.
This particular quote needs unpacking at some point, but I can only take it in as I sit back after a chapter on Christ’s descent into hell and think, “WOW!”
Rutledge goes deep into the exploration of human evil and the existence of evil. I have a true fear of horror movies. I just don’t like that genre. I couldn’t avoid it in this chapter. It was horror. And it was real.
And then, LIFE. This quote:
The theme of Christ’s descent into hell signifies the impossibility of any human response adequate to the power of evil. The horrors are too great, the suffering is too terrible, the “heart of darkness” too intractable for any “religious” answers to be of any avail. In all religion, it is only the story of the crucified God that can stand up to the challenge of the long history of human wickedness. Christianity is unique. This is the claim with which we began; this is the claim we now repeat… (p. 461-2)
Evil exists. Evil is too great for any human answers. This is the need of the cross. This is the proclamation of the Church. Christ is greater. ONLY Christ.