Dispute about Jesus' execution method  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Jehovah's Witnesses teach that Jesus died on an upright pole: "The Gospel accounts of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John use the Greek word stau·ros′ when referring to the instrument of execution on which Jesus died. (Matthew 27:40; Mark 15:30; Luke 23:26) The word stau·ros′ refers to an upright pole, stake, or post."[1] In their own translation of the Bible, they use the phrase "torture stake" to translate the Greek word σταυρός (stauros) in the three passages cited: Matthew 27:40, Mark 15:30 and Luke 23:26.

They also say: "It was not until about 300 years after Jesus’ death that some professed Christians promoted the idea that Jesus was put to death on a two-beamed cross. However, this view was based on tradition and a misuse of the Greek word stau·ros′.[1]

Both these claims are disputed by other scholars, who say that at the time they were written, the words by which the Gospels referred to the gibbet on which Jesus died did not necessarily mean a stake, and Christian writers are cited who long before AD 300 specifically spoke of that gibbet as cross-shaped.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Dispute about Jesus' execution method" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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