I have always wonderd why so many people think Jesus died on a cross. Ive been brought up to beleive that he died on a stake. Where did it come from about the cross? Im only just 15 years and I know I should know this since Ive been brought up to be a JW but Im still confused. :-/
why do people think jesus died on a cross?
People think he died on a cross because that's what they are told. It's the same for witnesses and their belief that Christ died on a stake. People don't do any research, they just believe their religious leaders cause it's easy to believe.
When I was a regular meeting attender I used to think each meeting was a bible study. But the truth is the meetings are a watchtower publication study.
People think that Jesus died on a cross because crucifiction -- execution on a stake with a crossbeam -- was the way Romans executed people. That it was a cross is well documented through historical evidence. The WTS denied that Jesus died on a cross for political reasons: to distance themselves from the rest of Christianity. There has never been any serious suggestion by any half-credible historian that the instrument used for execution by Romans is anything but a cross.
The proof positive for me that Jesus dies on a cross is that no-one could ever drag a whole tree with them while being paraded throught the streets of Jerusalem, after just having had the crap beaten out of you for hours and hours. Have you ever tried to lift a tree?
Of course, what really happened is the prisoners were made to carry the crossbeam to the place of execution, where the upright trees were already waiting. Then the crossbeam was attached on site.
The crossbeams were small and able to be carried by a person.
And I should know because I am a Pope.
Of course, what really happened is the prisoners were made to carry the crossbeam to the place of execution,
Right you are, pope. You must be infallable. Anyway, de cruce liber has pics of that type of thing as well. He shows a crossbeam tied across someones shoulders, his arms tied to it as well. In this way the person is chased through the streets by someone w a whip. I went to the catholic seminary, here in montreal. I photocopied all the pictures from that book. I just can't find the complete set on the net. It seems that the romans were quite inventive in ways of killing people slowly to entertain the masses.
Aside from historical evidence, nothing else fits. Christ is where all things meet, north, south, east and west. Paul speaks of the breadth of His love. In short, the cross is not just history, but properly symbolic of Christianity. I also think that the stake is an appropriate symbol for the wt society.
Didn't the wt come up with some strange reasoning about a nail through two hands or something?
My God has his arms open, even though I were to kill Him.
Edited by - Bang on 1 August 2002 22:56:59
Here is an interesting link for a sidenote on this
Also there are quite a few descriptions in early Christian texts.
The Christian apologist Justin, writing about 160 CE made mention of the shape of the cross at least twice:
"And the human form differs from that of the irrational animals in nothing
else than in its being erect and having its hands extended . .. and this
shows no other form than that of the cross." (Justin Martyr: "First Apology"
in Roberts & Donaldson (ed): Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol I, Eerdmans
1969, p. 181) "For the one beam is placed upright, from which the highest extremity is
raised up into a horn, when the other beam is fitted on to it, and the ends
appear on both sides as horns joined on to the one horn." (Justin's
"Dialogue With Trypho", Chap XC in ANF, p. 245)
A few decades later Irenaeus wrote:
"The very form of the cross, too, has five extremities, two in length, two
in bredth, and one in the middle, on which [last] the person rests who is
fixed by the nails." (Irenaeus' "Against Heresies", Chap XXIV in ANF p. 395)
In 197 AD the Christian writer Tertullian wrote:
"Every piece of timber which is fixed in the ground in an erect position is
a part of a cross, and indeed the greater portion of its mass. But an entire
cross is attributed to us, with its transverse beam, of course, and its
projecting seat." (Tertullian in "Ad Nationes" Chap XI in ANF, Vol III, p.
Note that these writers lived in a period when Crucifixions were still
carried out, and could see these horribly executions firsthand. Both Justin
and Tertullian referred to cases where Christians were crucified.(See ANF,
Vol I, p. 254; Vol III, p. 28).
We even find testimony about the form of the cross by early non-Christian
writers. The Greek writer Lukianos (c. 120-180 AD) wrote that the letter T
had received its "evil meaning" because of the "evil instrument tyrants put
up to hang people upon them. (Lukianos in "Iudicium Vocalium 12", in Martin
Hengel in Crucifixion, Fortress Press, 1982, pp. 8,9)
Edited by - BugParadise on 2 August 2002 3:53:30
People think Jesus died on a cross, because the cross icon has permeated most of the Globe. It's most everywhere you go, Plus Madonna wears one.
Edited by - Dismembered on 2 August 2002 7:11:27
I have never seen the WT dispute that Spartacus died on a cross, or dispute that crucifiction was a common torture of the time, just that Jesus died on one. It would be quite easy to denounce the idolasation of the cross without pretending that it was not used
incidentally Song 205 always makes me cringe when it says
"He died upon a tree" presumably to rhyme with "To set all manknf free"