Under the Whirling Sword, Under the Cross

Posted: April 20, 2012 in books, creation, gospel, grace, history, Jesus, quotes

The end of Cain’s history, and so the end of all history, is Christ on the cross, the murdered Son of God.  That is the last desperate assault on the gate of paradise.  And under the whirling sword, under the cross, the human race dies.  But Christ lives.  The trunk of the cross becomes the wood of life, and now in the midst of the world, on the accursed ground itself, life is raised up anew. …

What a strange paradise is this hill of Golgotha, this cross, this blood, this broken body.  What a strange tree of life, this trunk on which the very God had to suffer and die.  Yet it is the very kingdom of life and of the resurrection, which by grace God grants us again.  It is the gate of imperishable hope now opened, the gate of waiting and of patience.  The tree of life, the cross of Christ, the center of God’s world that is fallen but upheld and preserved – that is what the end of the story about paradise is for us.

– Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Creation and Fall: A Theological Exposition of Genesis 1-3Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works, vol. 3 (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1997), 146.


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