Marion Christina Hauck

»… hinaufgezogen in die Höhe durch die μηχανή Jesu Christi«

Zur soteriologischen Deutung des Todes Jesu im Brief des Ignatius an die Epheser (9,1) vor dem Hintergrund griechisch-römischer Bautechnik

Section: Articles
Early Christianity (EC)

Volume 11 () / Issue 4, pp. 452-474 (23)
Published 14.12.2020

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In Eph.9:1, Ignatius of Antioch refers to the cross (ὁ σταυρός) of Jesus Christ by identifying it figuratively with a lifting device (μηχανή) for hoisting up stones to a high level during the construction of a building, namely the temple of God. But what kind of (wooden) lifting device does Ignatius have in view here? The following examination tries to answer that question by consulting the texts of Heron of Alexandria (1st cent. AD), who informs in his opus Mechanics about lifting (ἕλκειν) and the use of lifting devices with reference to the contemporary business of building. Read in the light of Heron's texts, the Ignatian imagery of building a temple and lifting stones by means of a special device becomes evident: By designating the cross as the μηχανή of Jesus Christ in an overall framework of building, Ignatius may refer to a (wooden) lifting device with one stem which Heron calls a μονόκωλος μηχανή. Against this backdrop, the soteriological implications of the Ignatian image of the cross of Christ as a lifting device require further and deeper analysis.

Marion Christina Hauck No current data available.