ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Similarities Between Socrates and Jesus Christ

Updated on February 26, 2014
A statue of Socrates.
A statue of Socrates. | Source

In “Phaedo Death Scene” in The Trials of Socrates, Plato depicts Socrates’ last moments before his death. This scene is strikingly similar to the Last Supper and crucifixion of Jesus Christ in The Bible. This is especially significant because Plato lived and wrote before the time of Christianity and Jesus. One explanation for the similarities is that disciples of both men write about the death of their heroes in similar ways, depicting ideal characteristics, regardless of reality.

Jesus and Socrates share several traits during their last living moments. Both men are calm, confident, and accepting of their fate: “‘I’ll no longer stay put, but will take my leave of you and depart for certain happy conditions of the blessed’” (Plato 79). Socrates seems certain of a heaven, and even says a prayer to the gods after drinking the poison: “‘One is, I suppose, permitted to utter a prayer to the gods – and one should do so – that one’s journey from this world to the next will prove fortunate’” (Plato 82). In the Gospel passages concerning Jesus’ crucifixion, he is obviously certain of a heaven and refers to God as his father. In addition, Socrates urges his followers to continue his work:

“If you don’t take care of your own selves and are unwilling to live following the tracks, as it were, of our present and past discussions, then however much you may agree to do at this moment, and however earnestly, you’ll accomplish nothing.” (Plato 79)

This is similar to the Gospels about Jesus, whom encourages his disciples to live out the life he has taught them in many of the passages. Lastly, Socrates takes a bath so that he is clean and the women do not have to tend to him. During the Last Supper, Jesus washes the feet of his guests. This act of cleansing may be symbolic of a cleansing of the soul. Clearly, there are many parallels between Plato’s account of Socrates’ death and the Gospel accounts of Jesus’ death.

Such uncanny similarities beg the question of whether the writers of the Gospel had read the work of Plato before writing their accounts of Jesus’ death. Otherwise, it seems extraordinary that such comparable styles and details would be found in both accounts of their respective hero’s death. Perhaps there are certain qualities one looks for, and therefore finds, as a comfort in their mentor’s last hours. Such traits would include composure, faith in a happy afterlife, confidence in their teachings, and cleansing of the soul. Regardless of whether either account is factual, they serve as the method by which the heroes are remembered. For this reason, it would make sense to boost the image of the hero, therefore glorifying him to future followers and increasing the likelihood that his teachings will be passed on to a large group of supporters.

Your Turn

How would you explain the similarities between Socrates and Jesus Christ?

See results


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • profile image


      2 years ago

      Socrates was sentimental.

    • profile image

      Not buying Jesus 

      4 years ago

      Could you do a poll to see how many people think a government would kill a guy for teaching people how to think for them self rather than kill a guy for preaching to love one another. Still today people are tortured and killed for trying to open peoples mind's mean while corporations push products that make love, an ideal, seem like it's a cure all. I would say Jesus is the k mart version of Socrates.

    • Bernadette Harris profile image

      Book Bug 

      4 years ago

      I've actually seen this parallel myself. Interesting, isn't it? I think they both showed similar traits simply because most great leaders display a series of traits that we all naturally admire--calm in the face of adversity, a strong sense of justice, etc. I do think it's unlikely that the Gospel writers would have read Plato's account, though, just because I don't think most people at the time would have had access to such books on a wide scale. Granted, some of the Gospel writers clearly knew Greek, but heavy books like that just weren't so readily available as they are to us today. Still, it's interesting. Thanks for the post!

    • ReverieMarie profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from Tuscaloosa, Alabama

      gh - Thank you for reading and commenting! I think that is definitely a possibility -- I would love to discuss it further with you!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I believe both the accounts of Socrates and Christ are correct.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)