Did Jesus Die On A Cross Or A Torture Stake?

Apr 23, 2012 by

You know the Watchtower claims that Christ wasn’t hung on a cross but on a pole. They throw rocks at all the other Christian religions for teaching that Jesus was crucified.

The Watchtower claims this because the Greek words used when referring to this instrument of death were “stauros” and “xylon”. “Stauros” meaning upright pole and “xylon” being literally “wood”.

At first blush this might make one actually consider their argument.

Yet the use of these two words does not rule out the use of a cross member in the execution of Christ.

Another thing that the Watchtower doesn’t want you to think about is that this was the standard execution procedure for the Roman empire.

You know if you think of Jews executing someone then you’d be correct in assuming the standard Jewish method of stoning. If you think of someone being executed in the United States during the mid 1800’s you’d think of hanging. If you think of execution in France during the French revolution then it is hard not to think of the infamous guillotine as their preferred method of execution. These are all matters of historical record.

Why fly directly in the face of historical record and claim that somehow the Romans made an exception when they hung Jesus on a “torture stake” or pole?

Because the Watchtower again, seeks to differentiate itself from all other religions. By making themselves different they can claim (under delusion of course!) that they are the only true religion because they are the only ones that have all of these odd, quirky, historically inaccurate beliefs.

Let’s get back to the basic argument:

Because the Greek word “Stauros” meaning “upright pole” is used then the Watchtower completely rules out the possibility (in the face of overwhelming historical evidence to the contrary) of a cross being used to execute Jesus.

I have but one question:

When one is referring to a TELEPHONE POLE does that prevent a cross member from being used?

We have them all across our country in cities, towns and rural communities. They decorate our entire national landscape with the familiar CROSSES that they are. Yet nobody calls them TELEPHONE CROSSES do they? Have you ever seen a telephone pole without a cross member? I haven’t.

Perhaps a thousand years from now some idiot will begin teaching that we used straight poles to carry the wires of communication across the country, not because of established historical record, or even the physical necessity for such a cross member but based merely upon the word used to describe it!

Ridiculous? You bet!

It is interesting that this “torture stake” theory was introduced not by Charles Taze Russell but by none other than the trial lawyer, “Judge” Rutherford. Trial lawyers make their living by manipulating words. They can shade and change the meaning of words and testimony in order to change opinion or even question established fact.

Rutherford made his living doing this in court and he continued his assault when he seized control of the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society. He was a master at establishing doubt in the minds of his followers and he used it to great advantage while building a worldwide organization of followers who do nothing but parrot his failed and flawed theology.

The Watchtower has again introduced a “paper tiger”. Saying that Jesus wasn’t crucified has absolutely no basis in reality or the historical record. Yet some people fall for their flawed arguments because they fail to think critically for themselves.

As I wrote in a prior post: “There’s a sucker born every minute!”

Yours in Christ,

Doug Shields
www.thewatchtowerfiles.com

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Another interesting question for you to ponder if you haven’t. Of course it is not too relevant to JW or Jesus etc…but do you ever wonder why the Bible does not speak of dinosaurs/life else where in the universe? Thanks for your reply earlier and your great blog!

Feb 27, 2012 by

No it really doesn’t. We can make a leap and say that the reference to “Leviathan” was a sea monster or something but that is a bit of a stretch.

I believe the bible was written post period for dinosaurs. They weren’t around at the time of the biblical writing or they probably would have been included in the descriptions of some of the animals.

They existed millions of years prior to our walk on this earth and I know, a lot of literal creationists would have a fit if they heard me say it but the facts are the facts.

I also believe in evolution as a concept and as it plays out in our various life forms here. It is obvious that evolution happens on our earth to all but the hopelessly obtuse.

I also believe that man is the only being on this planet with god like cognitive powers. I believe that man was directly created by God and that our walk as a race began fairly recently i.e. 6,000 or so years ago.

My point is that I believe that the concept of dinosaurs, evolution and creationism can coexist peacefully. I also believe that there very well could be life on other planets.

If Dr. Stephen Hawking believes it is possible then I’m safe in saying it myself.

My pleasure NN!

Yours in Christ,

Doug Shields
www.thewatchtowerfiles.com

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Romans 10:9 – how would you define “exercising faith” then? For doesn’t the bible state that “faith without works is dead”? Why does Jesus tell his people to preach the good news and make disciples throughout Matthew? I’m not trying to antagonize you. Just curious how you’d explain that bit. In James 1:27 “orphans” translates also to “bereaved ones.” This scripture means to be generous and helpful. There have been plenty of events to help the elderly, and many do let those in need stay at…

Feb 27, 2012 by

Well let’s take that phrase “exercising faith” that is apparently found in Romans 10:9 since the Greek is so important in determining the meaning of scripture. Did you know that not ONE other translation words this scripture in that way. I’ll go one further for you. Did you know that your Greek Interlinear doesn’t translate it that way either?

When you look into the actual translation side instead of reading what the Watchtower WANTS you to read you’ll see the true meaning of the scripture. Let me tell you what the Greek Interlinear says and you can also see the scan of the scripture below.

It states plainly that you should “believe in the heart”. It doesn’t say “exercise faith”.

This is just another example of how the Watchtower leadership puts an interesting “spin” on scriptures that they wish to use as “touchstones” of their faith. They want it to say something different in order to load other ideas into the meaning of the scripture. This is just one small instance where the original intended meaning of the scripture is subverted and a new interpretation is resulted from the “spin doctored” version.

Romans 10:9

They do this ALL OVER the New World Translation. For example they have inserted the word “other” in brackets when it is plainly stated that Jesus Christ created all things and without Him no other things were created. This scripture flies directly in the face of Watchtower theology and therefore has to be subverted in their translation.

Colossians 1:16-17 is a textbook example of what the Watchtower does to subvert the originally intended meaning of the bible and twist it, spin it, and otherwise doctor it to match their flawed theology. Notice the Greek and then notice the actual New World Translation in the right hand column and see the differences.

Colossians 1:16-17

This is nothing but fabrication in action. They take the scriptures and they change them to fit their theology and when asked about it they claim they know Greek (when in fact none of those on the NWT translation committee had the credentials to translate Koine’ Greek into English.)

Lastly your scripture at James 1:27 is your own attempt at spin. You want to mitigate my charge that the WT does nothing for widows and orphans and you state that bereaved ones is meant here instead.

Again, not one single translation can I find that translates James 1:27 in that way. You might be able to find one somewhere if you dig long enough, and that is exactly what the Watchtower leadership has done over the years. They search far and wide for any other translation that will support their flawed translation in order to give themselves credence. That is simply the wrong way to go about it.

If you have to comb the world looking for justification for translating a scripture radically differently than anyone else then you’re grasping for straws and you really need to consider whether or not you’re trying to squeeze round pegs into square holes.

I’ll address the rest of your argument on the next post.

Yours in Christ,

Doug Shields
www.thewatchtowerfiles.com

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Sounds like someone lost 20yrs and is quite bitter. Well. I guess so much for displaying a christlike attitude. Remember Jesus didn’t let them rile him up easily.

Jan 29, 2012 by

Start asking the right questions and you’ll find some seriously awesome answers. You’ve completely ignored my retort and chose to attack me and my motivation instead, now that you know your argument is a loser. This is typical of a JW.

Jesus called the scribes and Pharisees the “offspring of vipers” and “whitewashed graves” if you’ll recall. He called Peter “Satan”. I have yet to call you anything but Anonymous. Jesus drove out the moneylenders in the temple with a whip and turned over their tables in righteous anger.

So far I haven’t gotten physical with you.

Peter and Paul had a very sharp disagreement that resulted in a major argument.

Anger and strong feeling is a part of who we are. To deny that is to deny your own humanity. Even Jesus displayed anger when it was justified.

What I’m trying to do is to goad you into questioning your beliefs on a doctrinal level. I was attempting to get you to fume a little and to “bow up” at me and prove me wrong.

Most JW’s, after losing an argument, just fade away into the background. I no longer hear from them. I was asking you, in my own Irish way, to continue the dialogue and start digging into the doctrinal challenges to your faith.

Am I bitter at the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society for their lies and for stealing twenty years of my life as well as my mother and siblings? YOU BET!

Who wouldn’t be bitter?

Yours in Christ,

Doug Shields
www.thewatchtowerfiles.com

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Correction sir, They were a member of the U.N until the U.N. changed its chartership rules to imply a nationalistic stance. they only had a library card sir.Jw’s use lawyers and doctors too because they are in the world and ofcourse need those services from time to time like anyone else. BIg differences being in the world than being part of the world as Jesus himself pointed out.Lets get this story straight.

Jan 29, 2012 by

Well this letter from the UN states something entirely different.

It states in no uncertain terms that their membership in the UN as an NGO meant that they agreed to support and respect the charter of the UN and to help them in their information dissemination to their constituents.

This is more than just a library card SIR!

(By the way…this lie was told to JW’s on private channels. They have yet to give any public statement regarding their affiliation with the UN and they never will. To do so would be admitting this is true and that they are hypocrites. I’ve heard from JW’s that it was a low level WT researcher who obtained a library card at the UN and it got them listed on the NGO list. That isn’t how it works. You have to turn over your financials, something the Watchtower has never done publicly, and have the top officials of your organization sign off on the application in order to even be considered for NGO status. This was premeditated and it was purposeful i.e. they had a very good reason for joining the UN. The Watchtower has the most complete private library in the world. There is no reason that they would need to gain access to the UN’s library. This goes much deeper and is much more insidious than your elders, circuit overseers and district overseers would have you believe.)

This is a complete sellout from their official and public stance in condemning the UN as the Wild Beast.

I believe they established this relationship for the express purpose of gaining credibility in other countries where having a UN status is like a “backstage pass”.

I also find it extremely interesting that their “disaffiliation” from the UN coincided with a story by The Guardian newspaper regarding their affiliation with the UN. The story broke in October 8, 2001 and yes you would be correct if you guessed that was when their disaffiliation from the UN occurred (on October 9, 2001) as stated in the letter from the UN below.

The NEXT DAY? Are you kidding me that you don’t see this? One day after the story breaks and they are officially off the rolls of the UN! Do you really believe the lie that they broke ranks with the UN over some change in their policy? Come on!

I also find it highly suspect that if this were, as you say, “Just a library card.” that they would have gone to such lengths to have themselves removed from the roles of the NGO members of the UN. If this was totally innocent they could have remained and given a public explanation accordingly. Didn’t happen did it?

Original Guardian Article Dated October 8 2001

Follow Up Article Regarding Their Disaffiliation

If you read the articles by the Guardian as well as the official letter from the UN below you can only come to one conclusion: The Watchtower Bible & Tract Society are nothing but hypocrites! They have lied to you about their intent and the circumstances surrounding their joining the Wild Beast.

Perhaps it is YOU who should get your facts straight! Wait I have one better! Why don’t you take your critical thinking and start applying it where it will do the most good: On the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society!

Watchtower was an NGO member of the UN AKA The Wild Beast

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