Augustine, On the Trinity

“The truth is, men were more inclined to avoid the death of the flesh which they could not avoid, than the death of the spirit; that is, they shrank more from the punishment than from what deserved the punishment. Few, after all, care— or care very much— abou not sinning; but they make a great fuss about not dying, though it is in fact unobtainable. So then, in order that as by one man came death so by one man there might come the resurrection of the dead, the mediator of life came to show us how little we should really fear death, which in our human condition cannot now be avoided anyway, and how we should rather fear ungodliness which can be warded off by faith. And to do this he came to meet us at the end to which we had come, but not by the way we had come. We came to death by sin, but he came by justice; and so while our death is the punishment of sin, his death became a sacrifice for sin.”

Augustine, On the Trinity, Book IV, 13

By the Cross of Christ, a hymn

By the cross of Christ which brought us nigh
to God that we might see,
the coming fullness of all hope,
we know this joy will be.

By the love of God who did not withhold
such gift of life to those
who suffered long the death they chose,
this faith we’ve come to know.

Now all the power manifest to worldly eyes and hearts,
turned some to flesh, led dark to light;
God himself new life imparts.

Those he offended, Christ will shame
when in pow’r he returns,
but you who hope, abide in love;
His child he will not spurn.