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How Did Jesus Really Die? – Suffering Servant

How Did Jesus Really Die?

Note: The following Post is taken from the book by Joseph Lenard entitled Mysteries of Jesus’ Life Revealed—His Birth, Death,  Resurrection, and Ascensions. For an overview and complete chapter listing of this fascinating study, click here.

In this third puzzle piece in the case to establish the true cause of the death of Jesus, we will look at several Scripture passages that have frequently been overlooked by those studying His crucifixion. Key among these Scriptures is Isaiah’s prophecy concerning the Suffering Servant – Isaiah 52:13 to 53:12, particularly Isaiah 52:14. We will also look at Psalm 22, especially Psalm 22:6–7 and 17.

Ask most Christians whether they believe that Jesus either fulfilled or will fulfill all prophecies related to Him in the Old Testament, and you will likely get a fast response: “Yes, of course.” Well, like other Old Testament prophesies, it is my position that the Suffering Servant prophecies were among those that were precisely fulfilled. This makes all the difference in our understanding of how Jesus really died.

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How Did Jesus Really Die? – Jewish vs Roman Law

How Did Jesus Really Die?

Note: The following Post is taken from the book by Joseph Lenard entitled Mysteries of Jesus’ Life Revealed—His Birth, Death, Resurrection, and Ascensions. For an overview and complete chapter listing of this fascinating study, click here.

In this second puzzle piece in the case to determine How Did Jesus Really Die?, we will look at how the Jewish and Roman laws in existence at the time of Jesus impacted decisions regarding whether Jesus would be killed, why He would be killed, and how He would be killed.

We know that the Apostle Judas Iscariot was paid off by the Temple authorities to betray Jesus into their hands. Then, on the night before Jesus’ execution, Judas guided a detachment of Temple soldiers and some officials from the Chief Priests and Pharisees to a grove in the Garden of Gethsemane on the Mount of Olives. They went to arrest Jesus.

To identify Jesus to the authorities, Judas gave Jesus the now infamous kiss. After a small altercation, during which the Apostle Peter severed an ear from the High Priest’s servant, Malchus (which Jesus immediately restored), Jesus was bound and taken away.

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How Did Jesus Really Die? – Jewish Stoning

How Did Jesus Really Die?

Note: The following Post is taken from the book by Joseph Lenard entitled Mysteries of Jesus’ Life Revealed—His Birth, Death, Resurrection, and Ascensions. For an overview and complete chapter listing of this fascinating study, click here.

This first puzzle piece in our new case study entitled How Did Jesus Really Die? looks at the argument that Jesus actually died as a result of the stoning inflicted upon him by the Jews. Now you might be thinking, “Surely Jesus could not have been stoned to death! The Bible clearly states that He was crucified!”

If this prospect is bothersome to you, you are not alone.  For centuries Christians have rigorously rebuffed every attempt to offer new testimony, put forth new perspectives, or present any evidence which contradicts tradition. Of course Jesus was crucified.  We cannot argue that.  There is too much evidence, both from Scripture and from the historical writings and near-biblical testimony of those closest to the event. But, in truth, there is so much more to be told, so much more that can be added to the historical truths related to the death of Jesus.

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How Did Jesus Really Die? – Traditional vs Actual Cause

How Did Jesus Really Die?

Note: The following Post is taken from the book by Joseph Lenard entitled Mysteries of Jesus’ Life Revealed—His Birth, Death,  Resurrection, and Ascensions. For an overview and complete chapter listing of this fascinating study, click here.

This is the first Post in a new case study entitled How Did Jesus Really Die? Now this might seem like a ridiculous question; every Sunday School child is taught that Jesus was crucified on a Roman cross. But things are not always as they seem. As we investigate this topic and consider an immensely intriguing set of historical, religious and political circumstances set amid the tensions of Judeo-Roman Jerusalem in 30 AD, I ask only that you keep an open mind.

As tradition would have it, there is little disagreement among theologians, scholars, and archaeologists that Jesus’ death was caused by crucifixion, on a Roman-style cross, in accordance with Roman law. Nor is there disagreement that prior to crucifixion Jesus was whipped repeatedly – scourged – by Roman soldiers; in fact, in this traditional view, he was beaten so severely that the scourging alone played a significant role in His death.

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Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection? – Conclusion

Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection?

Note: The following Post is taken from the book by Joseph Lenard entitled Mysteries of Jesus’ Life Revealed—His Birth, Death, Resurrection, and Ascensions. For an overview and complete chapter listing of this fascinating study, click here.

I have now examined the evidence representing eight different puzzle pieces in my topic Where Were Jesus’ Death, Resurrection, and Ascensions and believe the evidence strongly supports that Jesus was crucified and buried on the Mount of Olives, rather than at one of several more traditional sites elsewhere in and around Jerusalem. The primary evidence for my case is found in the Biblical account of the crucifixion in the Gospel of Matthew, in the records of first century historians, and in certain extra-biblical writings.

In addition, an understanding of the Hebrew roots of the Christian faith – including an understanding of the details of the Temple and of the Feasts of the Lord – assisted me in building my case for the location of what were arguably the most significant events in the history of the world.

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Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection? – Temple Location

Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection?

Note: The following Post is taken from the book by Joseph Lenard entitled Mysteries of Jesus’ Life Revealed—His Birth, Death, Resurrection, and Ascensions. For an overview and complete chapter listing of this fascinating study, click here.

Where Exactly Was the Temple?

In my previous Posts I have made much of the fact that Jesus’ crucifixion site had to have been directly east of the Temple in Jerusalem in order to meet the requirements of Scripture and the accounts of early historians.  And I have made the case that this site was almost certainly on the Mount of Olives. But exactly where was the crucifixion site east of?  The question we must now ask ourselves is this: Are we certain we know where the Temple was located?

Answering this question has required a fair amount of research – which I share in an upcoming set of Posts. I think you will find this interesting! For now, it is sufficient to recognize that this question becomes the eighth and final puzzle piece in my topic for Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection?

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Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection? – Pattern of Movement

Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection?

Note: The following Post is taken from the book by Joseph Lenard entitled Mysteries of Jesus’ Life Revealed—His Birth, Death, Resurrection, and Ascensions. For an overview and complete chapter listing of this fascinating study, click here.

Which Direction?

Our seventh puzzle piece in this topic area regarding the death and resurrection of Jesus involves a Pattern of West-to-East Movement from Jerusalem toward the Mount of Olives. This involves an interesting observation from Scripture, and it helps to make our case for the crucifixion of Christ having been on the Mount of Olives.

As James Tabor has stated, “The basic case for the Mt. of Olives being the site of Jesus’ crucifixion rests on several interrelated arguments of varying evidential strength.”

This issue of movement which I am about to discuss might arguably be considered among the least of the arguments in a ranking of evidential strength offered in this case. However, I consider it to be yet another link in the chain of corroboration for the crucifixion being on the Mount of Olives. That alone makes it worthy of discussion.

As I will illustrate, what we see is that there is a definite correlation of West-to-East movement from Jerusalem having a negative connotation; and we find just the opposite for East-to-West movement toward Jerusalem, which seems to have a positive connotation. The Biblical evidence is quite remarkable.

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Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection? – First Fruits Barley Sheaf

Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection?

Note: The following Post is taken from the book by Joseph Lenard entitled Mysteries of Jesus’ Life Revealed—His Birth, Death, Resurrection, and Ascensions. For an overview and complete chapter listing of this fascinating study, click here.

First Fruits

The final part of the Feast of Passover is called the “Feast Day of the Sheaf of First Fruits,” which we now discuss as the sixth of eight puzzle pieces in this topic of ”Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection?”

The Feast of First Fruits is referred to in Leviticus 23:9-14. The New Testament also mentions this Feast on seven occasions, and in 1 Corinthians Paul correlates this Feast day to the resurrection of the Messiah:

“But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the First Fruits of those who have fallen asleep” (1 Corinthians 15:20; cf. Revelation 1:5).

In ancient Israel, the day of the Sheaf of First Fruits also observed as a prophecy – and today serves as a reminder – of Jesus’ ascension to heaven and is symbolic of the coming resurrection of all saints during the Last Days. As one author has stated:

“. . . Christ  fulfilled  the  reality  and  spirit  of  it  [Feast  of  First Fruits] in His resurrection and glorified body. The empty tomb testified to the fact that the sheaf of First Fruits had been reaped and waved before the Lord in His heavenly sanctuary.”

Of particular interest to our study is the fact that there is a connection between the ceremony involving the sheaf of First Fruits and the Mount of Olives, which we have proposed as the location of both the crucifixion and the resurrection of Christ.

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Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection? – Executions Outside the Camp

Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection?

Note: The following Post is taken from the book by Joseph Lenard entitled Mysteries of Jesus’ Life Revealed—His Birth, Death, Resurrection, and Ascensions. For an overview and complete chapter listing of this fascinating study, click here.

Outside the Camp

According to Jewish law, as recorded by Moses, the place of executions was required to be “outside the camp.” (Numbers 15:35-36)

Dr. Ernest Martin has stated that according to Jewish tradition, criminals convicted of serious offenses were expected to be their own sin offerings. In this regard, they were required to pay for their sins, without the benefit of an animal sacrifice as a substitute. Furthermore, these sacrifices were to be offered east of the Sanctuary, outside of the camp, in full view of God – who figuratively dwelt in the Temple, in the Holy of Holies.

In Jerusalem, this area east of the Temple that was also “outside the camp” was the Mount of Olives. The investigation of this tradition constitutes the fifth puzzle piece in this topic on the death and resurrection of Jesus.
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Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection? – Execution Area

Where Were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection?

Note: The following Post is taken from the book by Joseph Lenard entitled Mysteries of Jesus’ Life Revealed—His Birth, Death, Resurrection, and Ascensions. For an overview and complete chapter listing of this fascinating study, click here.

Execution Site – Roman Perspective

This is the fourth of eight puzzle pieces in our quest to determine “Where were Jesus’ Death and Resurrection?”

In his website article, “The Place of Jesus’ Crucifixion,” James Tabor makes the following statement regarding the Roman preference for the Mount of Olives for crucifixions:

“Josephus says that during the Jewish revolt (66–70 AD) thousands of Jewish victims were crucified ‘before the wall of the city,’ in order to terrorize the population. This description fits perfectly with the Mt. of Olives, before the main city gate, with the Romans camped just to the north on Mt. Scopus. This was the only location that could be seen by anyone in the city of Jerusalem, thus providing a visible warning to those who might be tempted to sympathize with rebels.”

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