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Author Topic: Why Crucifixion?  (Read 6583 times)
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« on: May 11, 2003, 09:45:28 PM »

I was just thinking the other night; why did the Romans use crucifixion as a method of execution?

I mean, yes, it'll kill people, but so does hanging, hemlock and having your head chopped off. Each of those were used as means of execution elsewhere - and hemlock was known at the time.

So why did they go for crucifixion? As far as a degrading death goes, hanging has much the same purpose. And people die in the same way - asphixiation - then too. I mean, with the amount of wood used to make a cross, you'd think it'd be quite a wasteful way to execute people.

 Huh

Any ideas? The only thing I could come up with is that maybe its a bit more dramatic as a public form of execution?
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Depart from me I never knew you!
I never knew you!
Never.
 

Man disavows, and Deity disowns me:
Hell might afford my miseries a shelter;
Therefore Hell keeps her ever-hungry mouths all
Bolted against me.
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« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2003, 01:19:43 AM »

I have wondered this myself,

The crucifixcion of Jesus, is also referred to as: hanging on a tree (Acts 5:30, 10:39) in the NT.

The first mention of a "hanging on a tree" is found in Gen 40:19; so apparently it was,  a custom, in use as early as the times of  Joseph the son of Jacob..

And in the book of Deut. while Moses is recounting the law and its observance in the promise land, states at;

Deut 21
22  And if a man have committed a sin worthy of death, and he be to be put to death, and thou hang him on a tree:
23  His body shall not remain all night upon the tree, but thou shalt in any wise bury him that day; (for he that is hanged is accursed of God;) that thy land be not defiled, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.

So, hanging on a tree, is what apparently became, the crucifixcion spoken of in the NT, concerning the manner of death, which Jesus, was to endure;

He even spoke of it;

Jhn 12
30  ........................... This voice came not because of me, but for your sakes.
31 color=Red] Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.  

32  color=Red] And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.  [/color]
33 color=Red] he said, signifying what death he should die. [/color]

This language, causes me to recall, the brazen serpent, which God commanded Moses to make, so that anyone who was bitten by one of the fiery serpents, that was set on a pole in the middle of the camp, could look upon it an live;  (Num 21:8-9)

So this form of torture was in pratice, for thousands of years, before the Romans.

But recently, while reflecting on  a study, I remembered this verse, which I shared elsewhere in another thread herein, while speaking of Gods sovereignty, that God ordained this manner of death, upon His sacrificiasl Lamb;  it was not by chance that Jesus was cricified, note the wording of the following verse;

Acts 2  Peter speaking;
22  Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know:
23  Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:
24  Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.

And the apostle Paul, says;

1 Cor 2
7  But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:
8  Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

That God preordained it, is very clear by the following verse;

Gal 3
10  For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.
11  But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.
12  And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them.
13  Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:

And the passage goes on to tell us;

16  Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.
17  And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect.
18  For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise.

Many so called christian denominations, reject the cross as the instrument used to crucify Jesus, they rather depict the idea it was a stake or a pole;

1st Century depictions of the cross, would agree with the concept, of a cross, the greek word "stauros" pronounced;  stow-ros  is not clear; as it defines the word as a; stake or pole (upright), while  the Latin word  'cru-ci' refers to principly a "cross",   but in the illustrated Dictionary of the Bible, authored by  Herbert Lockyer, Sr - Editor, published by  Thomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville;  there is reference to the remains of an individual crucified from the first century A.D., discovered in a cave in Jerusalem, both feet were pierced with a spike just below the heels., and in explaining this they depict the position of the remains on a cross.

Either way, the symbol of the cross, symbolizes the glory of the Christian Gosple..

Praise ther Lord..

Blessings

Petro
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« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2003, 10:33:46 AM »

Excellent answer, Petro. I only wish I would have gotten to it first, lol  Grin
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« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2003, 08:03:18 PM »

Hey Petro,
Thanks for responding Smiley

I wasn't so much wondering why Jesus was crucified - I know that the Bible says he had to be hung on a tree (though that tends to make me think of hanging, the gallows tree rather than crucifixion, as it happens), but why the Romans chose to use crucifixion to execute criminals.

It just seems a bit wasteful, I would have thought that hanging was more efficient a means of execution of criminals. Obviously there must have been a reason for them to use crosses, as we know they did use them, what I'm puzzled by is why?
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And God will say:
Depart from me I never knew you!
I never knew you!
Never.
 

Man disavows, and Deity disowns me:
Hell might afford my miseries a shelter;
Therefore Hell keeps her ever-hungry mouths all
Bolted against me.
-Cowper
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« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2003, 11:39:34 PM »


Spectacle.  Crucifixion was used because of the spectacle aspect.  And lasting one--slow, painful death.  

And, spectacle would demonstrate power.

All of the "great" nations up to the British parliamentary government were slave states.   Arguably so was even Britain, but obviously not to such a degree.  But all the great nation up til then were built on the blood and sweat of slaves.

That means authority and raw power were always needed to keep the slaves, and the general populace at a distance, and in fear.  Crucifixion communicates raw, fearful power.  

So crucifixion was used for it's spectacle aspect.  The Romans were intensely "jealous" of any other power, or would-be upstart.

I understand that during the German retreat from the Soviet Union, according to Alexander Solznytzen, I believe, who was an artillery officer in the Soviet army, as the Soviet's advanced, they were particuallary cruel to the German women, in outlying German villages, nailing the women to the sides of barns.

I understand there is some kind of annual event in the Phillipines, members of some sect having themselves literally crucified.
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« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2003, 02:16:33 AM »

I agree with Symphony's spectacle concept.  Keep in mind also that the reason Christ was crucified as far as Rome was concerned, was for sedition.  Rome had a vast empire to control, and Jerusalem was a proverbial hotbed of insurrection.  Interesting, is it not, that Pilate repeated 5 times that he found no fault in Jesus?
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« Reply #6 on: May 13, 2003, 02:46:21 AM »

A vulgar display of power is most definately what they were after.  The romans are known for being masters of torture and extremely cruel.  Think about the gladiator matches, lions feeding on Christians.  The biggest deffinition of gluttony was from the Romans and their seven course meals.  They would eat an entire meal as one course.  After they finished they would go to a desiganted "vomit wall" and slaves would help them to vomit so they could go back and eat again.  They were quite warped people.   Being efficient only mattered in war and production.  If they wanted someone to die instead of wait for them to die they broke their legs so they couldn't push up for air.  Notice in the the gospels were it says "break his legs that He might die" because the sabbath was upon them.  They were just plain brutal disgusting people.
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« Reply #7 on: May 13, 2003, 07:37:49 AM »

Hmmm, I suppose it is a bit more dramatic to have someone asphixiating on a cross rather than on the end of a rope....

Posted by Saved_4Ever:
Quote
The biggest deffinition of gluttony was from the Romans and their seven course meals.  They would eat an entire meal as one course.  After they finished they would go to a desiganted "vomit wall" and slaves would help them to vomit so they could go back and eat again.

There is something about that in the Bible too.

If you are overstuffed with food get up and vomit, and you will have relief (Sirach 31:21)
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And God will say:
Depart from me I never knew you!
I never knew you!
Never.
 

Man disavows, and Deity disowns me:
Hell might afford my miseries a shelter;
Therefore Hell keeps her ever-hungry mouths all
Bolted against me.
-Cowper
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« Reply #8 on: May 13, 2003, 09:17:40 AM »


The word "excruciate" (meaning, ďto cause great agony, tormentĒ) comes from the Latin for "from, or out of, the cross.Ē


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« Reply #9 on: May 13, 2003, 10:50:34 AM »

Posted by Saved_4Ever:
Quote
The biggest deffinition of gluttony was from the Romans and their seven course meals.  They would eat an entire meal as one course.  After they finished they would go to a desiganted "vomit wall" and slaves would help them to vomit so they could go back and eat again.

There is something about that in the Bible too.

If you are overstuffed with food get up and vomit, and you will have relief (Sirach 31:21)


Please Please PLEASE do not confuse the qu'ran or where ever you got that quote from with the bible.  There is no Sirach 31:21 in the bible.
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« Reply #10 on: May 13, 2003, 07:50:22 PM »

Its from one of the deuterocanonical books, Saved_4Ever, The Wisdom of Jesus son of Sirach, aka Ecclesiasticus or Sirach. Smiley Its like a really long Proverbs.
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And God will say:
Depart from me I never knew you!
I never knew you!
Never.
 

Man disavows, and Deity disowns me:
Hell might afford my miseries a shelter;
Therefore Hell keeps her ever-hungry mouths all
Bolted against me.
-Cowper
Tibby
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« Reply #11 on: May 13, 2003, 08:19:25 PM »

Please Please PLEASE do not confuse the qu'ran with the Catholic Bible. There is a Sirach 31:21 in the Bible, the Catholic Bible, which, for your information, if believed by millions of people all over the world to be the True Bible. Please Please PLEASE do not insult your fellow brothers in Christ by dismissing what we believe is the true bible as a pagan holy book without reading so much as one chapter from it!
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« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2003, 10:43:09 PM »

Sorry tibby but the apocrypha is not part of the bible and the cahtolic faith is a pagan faith.  It's got just the slightest bit of truth in it.  That is Jesus Chrsit but most everything else is so unbilical it makes my want to vomit.
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« Reply #13 on: May 13, 2003, 11:39:00 PM »

Didnít see that one coming... Grin Iím truly very sorry you feel that way. I hate to inform your that these are lies by the enemy to keep the Church of God separate. I guess there isnít much I can do to change you opinion, right? Maybe we Catholic on the board here can hopefully change your mind about us, see that we are your brothers, not your enemy.
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« Reply #14 on: May 14, 2003, 10:16:02 AM »

You can stay ignorant all you want.  There's nothing you can say to make me believe outside of the bible.  That's what your paganism is.  Outside the bible.  Good to know the catholic curch finally decided purgatory doesn't exist.  It's good to know we can chnage and make things up at will so long as the pope says so.
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