St. Athanasius On How Jesus Turns Everything Upside Down

In St. Athanasius’ On the Incarnation of the Word (296-373 AD), he says,


Now, Macarius, true lover of Christ, we must take a step further in the faith of our holy religion, and consider also the Word’s becoming Man and His divine Appearing in our midst. That mystery the Jews traduce, the Greeks deride, but we adore; and your own love and devotion to the Word also will be the greater, because in His Manhood He seems so little worth. For it is a fact that the more unbelievers pour scorn on Him, so much the more does He make His Godhead evident. The things which they, as men, rule out as impossible, He plainly shows to be possible; that which they deride as unfitting, His goodness makes most fit; and things which these wiseacres laugh at as “human” He by His inherent might declares divine. Thus by what seems His utter poverty and weakness on the cross He overturns the pomp and parade of idols, and quietly and hiddenly wins over the mockers and unbelievers to recognize Him as God.

It is interesting that in every generation, Jesus has been mocked and ridiculed as out-dated and out of step with current trends and beliefs. Yet, He remains and persists as the most powerful figure in world history. Today, we have the enlightened telling us that belief in God is a farce and that Jesus was just a man. Yet, His message and power remain and He keeps working through society like yeast works through the dough.


Reminds me of 1 Corinthians 1:20-25:


Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.


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