CRUCIFIXION OF JESUS, THE by Gerard S. Sloyan ($21)*

AUGS: 0-8006-2930-2

Jesus of Nazareth died on a cross at the hands of Roman justice around the year 30 A.D. Thousands of others perished in the same way, and many people before and since have suffered far more gruesome torments. Why then is Jesus, Gerard Sloyan asks, uniquely and universally remembered for his suffering death? How has his death brought solace to many millions?

To answer this question, Gerard Sloyan in this powerful historical tour de force tracks the legacy of the cross across two millennia of Christian reminiscences, piety, art, speculation, and mythicizing. Beginning with New Testament accounts, he shows how Jesus’ death came to be seen as sacrificial. He then plots the emergence and development— in theology, liturgy, literature, art—of the conviction that Jesus’ death was redemptive, as seen both in soteriological theory from Tertullian to Anselm, in the Reformation and modern eras, and in more popular religious responses to the crucifixion.

Sloyan’s impressive scholarship and keen theological insights bring to light both the historical realities of Jesus’ death and the many and profound ways in which the cross has been received in the hearts and minds of those who profess Jesus’ name.

Table of Contents


1. What It Was to Be Crucified and Why Jesus Was Sentenced to It

2. How Jesus' Death Came to Be Seen as Sacrificial and Redemptive

3. The Attribution of Jesus' Death to the Jews in the Writings of the Church Fathers (C.E. 100-600)

4. Theories of Expiation and Satisfaction: From Tertullian to Anselm and Beyond

5. The Poplar Passion Piety of the Catholic West

6. Modern Soteriological Thinking: The Cross and Resurrection in the Framework of Creation and Universal Redemption

7. Piety Centered on Jesus' Sufferings and Some Eccentric Christian Understandings of the Mystery of Calvary

8. A Variety of Responses to a Crucified Redeemer

About the Author: Gerard S. Sloyan is Professor Emeritus of Religion at Temple University and currently Visiting Professor of Religion and Religious Education at the Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C. Past President of the Catholic Theological Society of America, he is also the author of many books.

Hardcover edition.

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