Sunday, October 21, 2018

Hanby on the disastrous de-Hellenization of Christianity

"Christianity cannot be de-Hellenized . . . without being de-Christianized at the same time, and Christianity cannot be de-Christianized without an eclipse of the sense of God and man casting its dark shadow over the whole of our thought and life."

     Michael Hanby, "A false paradigm," First things no. 287 (November 2018):  24 (19-24).  And further on down that same page,
     At the head of the Cross of Christ, the Gospels tell us, was an inscription which read 'Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.'  According to St. John, it was written in Hebrew, Latin, and Greek.  What could this detail even mean to our de-Hellenized minds, except perhaps to indicate an early example of sociological 'inculturation'?  But for the traditional Christian, on whom the ends of the ages had come, and for whom the universe itself is a symbol crying out to us to recognize its Creator, it would have meant much more.  It would signify that the whole world was united in judgement under the Cross of Christ in the fullness of time, and that it was precisely in this Kairos—which unites the language of true worship, the language of power, and the language of the wise—that God chose to reveal himself.  The wisdom of the Greeks could not therefore be adventitious to the meaning of the gospel and to the articulation of Christian faith, as indeed they have never been up till now.