April 3, 2015

The Strangest Story in the World: "It was the end of a very great thing called human history...."


"They took the body down from the cross and one of the few rich men among the first Christians obtained permission to bury it in a rock tomb in his garden; the Romans setting a military guard lest there should be some riot and attempt to recover the body. There was once more a natural symbolism in these natural proceedings; it was well that the tomb should be sealed with all the secrecy of ancient eastern sepulcher and guarded by the authority of the Caesars. For in that second cavern the whole of that great and glorious humanity which we call antiquity was gathered up and covered over; and in that place it was buried. It was the end of a very great thing called human history; the history that was merely human. The mythologies and the philosophies were buried there, the gods and the heroes and the sages. In the great Roman phrase, they had lived. But as they could only live, so they could only die; and they were dead.

"On the third day the friends of Christ coming at daybreak to the place found the grave empty and the stone rolled away. In varying ways they realized the new wonder; but even they hardly realized that the world had died in the night. What they were looking at was the first day of a new creation, with a new heaven and a new earth; and in a semblance of the gardener God walked again in the garden, in the cool not of the evening but the dawn."


From G.K. CHESTERTON: THE EVERLASTING MAN HT: The Day the Ancient World Ended ォ The Thinking Housewife

Posted by gerardvanderleun at April 3, 2015 3:06 PM
Bookmark and Share



"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

So much context here....but first of all, that heading should read "G.K." for Gilbert Keith Chesterton, not "C.K."

The "rich man" referred to was apparently Joseph of Arimathea, a merchant who is in some tellings also the uncle of Jesus, who once went with him on a trading voyage to Great Britain. This legend is the source of the William Blake poem

And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England's mountains green;
And was the holy Lamb of God
On England's pleasant pastures seen!

Set to the stirring music of Sir C.H.H.Parry, this tune, "Jerusalem," is now proposed by a growing number of Britons as the new National Anthem.



Posted by: Rob De Witt at April 3, 2015 5:31 PM