We are entering the time of the liturgical year when the Scandal of the Cross becomes an important concept. When Jewish criminals were sentenced to death, they were stoned and afterward hung on a cross for they were cursed under the law (Deuteronomy 21.23). This act became known as the Scandal of the Cross when it was applied to Jesus (Galatians 3.13). The crucifixion was an especially important event for Paul, as a practicing Pharisee. He would have understood the death of Jesus as the punishment of a criminal, and in fact, he responded to the followers of Jesus as the Christ as if they too were criminals. He became an ardent persecutor of the early Christians (Acts 8:1). As a result of his Damascus experience (Acts 9:1-9), he came to understand the death of Jesus as a sacrificial act of love (Romans 6:8 and 14:9) which results in our salvation. Paul’s theology was apocalyptic. He believed that we would know our salvation and our resurrection in a very short time. Like many people of his time, he believed that the end of time would be soon.