Jesus did not die on cross, says scholar
Theologian Gunnar Samuelssons comments appear in an article in The Daily Telegraph (UK) and the text at left is taken from there to set the scene and allow readers to understand the inspiration for this hub.
You can read the full article at:
The legend of his execution is based on the traditions of the Christian church and artistic illustrations rather than antique texts, according to theologian Gunnar Samuelsson.
He claims the Bible has been misinterpreted as there are no explicit references the use of nails or to crucifixion - only that Jesus bore a "staurus" towards Calvary which is not necessarily a cross but can also mean a "pole".
Theologian Gunnar Samuelsson has written a 400-page thesis after studying the original texts, said:
"The problem is descriptions of crucifixions are remarkably absent in the antique literature. The sources where you would expect to find support for the established understanding of the event really don't say anything. "
The ancient Greek, Latin and Hebrew literature from Homer to the first century AD describe an arsenal of suspension punishments but none mention "crosses" or "crucifixion."
Mr Samuelsson, of Gothenburg University, said: "Consequently, the contemporary understanding of crucifixion as a punishment is severely challenged.
"And what's even more challenging is the same can be concluded about the accounts of the crucifixion of Jesus.
The New Testament doesn't say as much as we'd like to believe ."
End of quote
But does this matter, if it is true?
No doubt, if our atheist friends have spotted this they will be busy in the forums, maybe some more devout believers will be outraged that anyone challenges what their bibles state.
Secular humanity will just relax in their disbelief.
Those who have a daily relationship with Christ through the Holy Spirit will hopefully take the time to re examine where they stand in this issue.
Speaking personally I believe that God has ensured that any believer can find sufficient evidence in the bible, for them to approach the 'cross ' that Christ informs us we need to pick up daily, in His word.
I have no doubt that man in his attempts to reinterpret the words of God to fit into his motives, will have interpreted things to suit, and our understanding of our bibles can have been corrupted in part by successive generations of Popes and rulers.
But the TRUTH is still in there to be found, and the book is sufficient for all who seek to find it.
Every word of God is tried and purified; He is a shield to those who trust and take refuge in Him.
Proverbs 30:5 (Amplified Bible)
I have found many folk who have embraced Christianity.... but failed to embrace Christ .... people who have found a religion, and perhaps attained a place of leadership in their religion, who have not actually entered into a spirit filled existence with God through His Holy Spirit.
I do not say that you are not a true believer if you have not experienced an infilling of the Holy Spirit, that is far too narrow a view to hold, and in any case someone can be fully saved and not spirit filled.
But I do say that ONCE someone has experienced the daily outworking of Christ through His Holy Spirit in their lives, they cannot fall away from the faith and belief in Christ that they have attained and experienced.
People who have not experience this can be disabled by the fiery darts and arrows of the enemy.
Not everyone in an army needs to be dressed in full armour and ride into battle, the foot soldiers wear no such protection, their safety comes from their shield, and they follow the cavalry into the battle.
In Medieval times the 'knights ' needed to practise daily standing and fighting in full armour, and they still do today.
Not many folk are prepared to do this strenuous task in order to be ready for an encounter with the enemy, at the front of the charge.
Not in the way of eye-service [as if they were watching you] and only to please men, but as servants (slaves) of Christ, doing the will of God heartily and with your whole soul;
Rendering service readily with goodwill, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that for whatever good anyone does, he will receive his reward from the Lord, whether he is slave or free.
You masters, act on the same [principle] toward them and give up threatening and using violent and abusive words, knowing that He Who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and that there is no respect of persons (no partiality) with Him.
In conclusion, be strong in the Lord [be empowered through your union with Him]; draw your strength from Him [that strength which His boundless might provides].
Put on God's whole armor [the armor of a heavy-armed soldier which God supplies], that you may be able successfully to stand up against [all] the strategies and the deceits of the devil.
For we are not wrestling with flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the despotisms, against the powers, against [the master spirits who are] the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spirit forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) sphere.
Therefore put on God's complete armor, that you may be able to resist and stand your ground on the evil day [of danger], and, having done all [the crisis demands], to stand [firmly in your place].
Stand therefore [hold your ground], having tightened the belt of truth around your loins and having put on the breastplate of integrity and of moral rectitude and right standing with God,
And having shod your feet in preparation [to face the enemy with the firm-footed stability, the promptness, and the readiness produced by the good news] of the Gospel of peace.
Lift up over all the [covering] shield of saving faith, upon which you can quench all the flaming missiles of the wicked [one].
And take the helmet of salvation and the sword that the Spirit wields, which is the Word of God.
Pray at all times (on every occasion, in every season) in the Spirit, with all [manner of] prayer and entreaty. To that end keep alert and watch with strong purpose and perseverance, interceding in behalf of all the saints (God's consecrated people).
And [pray] also for me, that [freedom of] utterance may be given me, that I may open my mouth to proclaim boldly the mystery of the good news (the Gospel),
So it is with Christians.
I realise that analogies about medieval knights draw comparisons with the Crusades, and am aware that those Crusades were ill informed and non Christian activities, our battle is against dark spiritual forces in the 'heavenlies ', NOT against flesh and blood.
The foot soldier can be forgiven if they hear their enemy calling that their King is dead and the battle is lost, they have viewed their King from a distance, heard of him from their leaders, they have not met with him personally.
That's why we need to re-evaluate our relationship daily, and strive to get more of Christ, to get into that full Holy Spirit filled relationship, to put our armour on DAILY and stand ready to fight the 'enemy' wherever he raises his ugly head to attack the 'brethren ', to pray incessantly for the saints, all those things we are told to do in Ephesians, yet which many simply get too busy to practise daily, or even more than once a week at their church meeting.
Wake up church!
Time is short and daily we see more attacks apon our faith from a secular world that has progessed from tentative probing to full blown attacks on what for years the body of Christ had full reign over.
Morality has become an arbitrary subject, self justification is the norm for our society, good has become bad, and nobody is allowed to challenge how anybody else wishes to behave inside or outside the law.
This is no surprise, our Lord told us that this will happen during the end days, and even that concept is challenged daily!
Someone wrote in another hub that they doubted that Revelation was scriptural! - that the whole book should be dropped from the canon of scripture. That it was not relevant for our lives today!
God gave us exactly what He wanted us to have, man may have interpreted is somewhat; to fit their desires or settle their confusions, but the bible also tells us to study to be approved, to be Bereans and examine the word daily to improve our lives and be edified.
To bring each other to the 'fullness ' of Christ, to correct error where we find it, to admonish those who are in danger of losing their eternal lives in their sinfullness.
At the end of the day, a believers life does NOT belong to them, they have been bought and paid for by Christ.
I do not doubt that Christ died to pay for our sins, ONCE and FOR ALL , and therefore someone questioning the manner of his execution is of little concern for me.
I definitely KNOW that Christ rose again and lives today, He's here with me now as I write, and He's there with you now as you read.