i don't even think he ever lived. and if he did, he may have been a cool guy, but, i agree with 5go, finally. lol the whole story is sketchy to me. well, the whole bible is.
Why is the "Cross" an issue?
Maybe because making an issue of it diverts attention from the message?
2. Make their translation of the NT appear “superior”.
The NWT says that Jesus was impaled on a torture stake.
Help, I impaled myself on a 2x4. Are you alright. Ya I'm ok, hurts a bit I used small finishing nails to attach it.
Impaled on a stake was when armies who won battles took the dead and stuck them on a stake up into
their rib cages and left them there, this was done to strike fear into their enemies.
Also to distance themselves from any other christian religion in the world, thereby making them almost unique.
I believe he died on the cross, the evidence is staggering.
Didnt a few years ago the Watchtower hint that he may have died on the cross afterall? I remember something to this effect.
I think all four reasons apply to varying extents -
5go - Are you 'looking' for a cross-shaped cross? It won't happen. As you rightly say, wood was in short supply so it's more likely that the upright section would be a 'permanent' fixture at the execution site, with the crossbeam plus victim being added later! This is more likely to be what Jesus carried - hence the use of 'stake' The crossbeam could also be recycled for further executions. It is Christian art which has commonly portrayed Jesus carrying an entire cross, and yes, I might go as far as saying they mistranslated it in Scripture too, maybe 'stake' is a better translation - which has caused the misunderstanding. Nails were rarely used as far as I know - but they were used on occasions, perhaps if the executioners happened to gain possession of some and were sufficiently bored and/or callous to want to inflict extra pain on their victim (although maybe it might have been a mercy in hastening death too) - again, these could easily be recycled.
wood was in short supply so it's more likely that the upright section would be a 'permanent' fixture at the execution site, with the crossbeam plus victim being added later! This is more likely to be what Jesus carried - hence the use of 'stake' The crossbeam could also be recycled for further executions. It is Christian art which has commonly portrayed Jesus carrying an entire cross, and yes, I might go as far as saying they mistranslated it in Scripture too, maybe 'stake' is a better translation - which has caused the misunderstanding.
Sad emo - I have never heard of that idea before but it does make perfect sense - will look it up.
Doug - I think they make an issue of it to make themselves different too. Rutherford putting his own stamp on things.
Here's a link to Leolaia's fantastic thread on the topic:
Short of anyone pulling out a Polaroid, no one knows for sure. The real issue isn't what the cross represents (a penis? Give me a break) but what the WT does with it.
If you will go by the old maxim "The only bad publicity is no publicity" then all the GB wants is to stir things up. They know most believers won't go for it. And they also continue to need to promote themselves as "different and distinct" from any other religion out there. So make it a big deal if Jesus hands were supposedly over his head or at shoulder length.
From a purely theological point of view, JW's always had a much better arguement about the use of the cross as an idol, which both OT and NT condemn. I recall several times preaching that I pulled out the "Reasoning" book and showed them the JW stand that it represents a penis. As you can imagine, that doesn't work to well, esp with women at the door.. lol!
Not to be offensive to thiests, but no one knows for sure how he really died. The only thing likely is that the historical Jesus's life was somehow ended prematurly.
1. Create a distraction from significant issues.
2. Make their translation of the NT appear “superior”.
3. Provides a sign of differentiation (“them” and “us”).
4. Make it difficult for a shaky JW to return to a church where the symbol is used.
3. Very Yes
WTS wants to appear as if they know more than the rest of Christianity. They
tell their followers that this is a fact (when it really is not a fact) to give the group,
not just their translation, the appearance of superiority. It causes the members
to think that "Christendom" is all heaped in idolatry.
The cross can be over-used similarly to the flag of one's country, but I have
analyzed the data. IMO, It seems that the cross was the instrument recorded in the
Bible, and that many religions are not using it inappropriately. They are using it
as a reminder of the sacrifice of Christ. Still, it seems like a personal decision for
Christians whether it is appropriate to wear one or hang it on their wall. It is
definitely wrong to tell other Christians, though, that it is idolotry to do so.
I agree it is wrong to tell someone that they are idolotrous on anything. That is a common bullshit argument that the GB uses on a lot of things. How can anyone know what someone worships anyway? And if the cross is merely a reminder to believers, I would be offended by someone telling me I was worshiping something I wasn't worshiping at all!
This is JW making up the arguement, framing the arguement, answering their own made up questions, and then saying everyone else just lost the arguement. Typical.