How was Jesus killed

Death on the cross: Jesus really died so painfully

Insurgents were crucified

Crucifixion was a common and common form of execution in ancient times. In the Orient and the Roman Empire, it was primarily imposed on runaway or rebellious slaves. The best-known example are the rebellious slave army leader Spartakus and 6000 of his followers who died in 71 BC. Were executed along the Via Appia. Thereafter, this form of the death penalty was also used against non-Romans in order to humiliate, intimidate and deter observers by this way of dying. The crucifixion was a political punishment to secure and maintain the "Pax Romana".

Not a typical Roman punishment

This form of punishment developed from hanging and was first known by the Phoenicians. This method of execution found its way to Mesopotamia and Persia via the Phoenicians. Here the convict was only tied up, but not yet nailed. Nailing was then widely practiced in the Macedonian Empire. Special execution sites have now also been created for this type of execution - mostly on a mountain or hill. They used their own stakes for this. Thus, in 332 BC, Alexander the Great had Execute about 2,000 people during the conquest of Tire. The Romans then adopted this type of enforcement.

Jesus committed a state crime

The Prefect Pilate, as the highest representative of the Roman occupying power in the province of Judea, saw it differently. For him, Jesus' religious claim to the Messiah was a political claim and thus a state crime: Jesus had sought rule over the Jews and thus attacked the privilege of the Roman emperor that only he was allowed to appoint and remove kings. With the demonstrative execution on Passover, Pilate wanted on the one hand to meet the Messiah expectations of all Jews and on the other hand to deter them from rebellions.

Jesus died on a T-frame

In the beginning, the Romans often used a bar triangle called a furca (fork). It was hung around the convict's neck, then his arms were tied around his thighs and he was whipped in this position. The Furca was then hung from a pile-driven pole. It was later replaced by a simple crossbeam (patibulum), which was attached to the upper end of the stake (stipes) in a notch. In this way, this instrument of torture and execution was given the shape of today's letter "T". There is archaeological evidence that Jesus was executed on such a cross.

Crucifying was extremely bloody

The previous flagellation with 40 blows by a leather whip (flagrum), the ends of which were provided with pieces of bone or iron, had left deep wounds in the shoulders, back and legs. The body of the person to be executed had turned into a mass encrusted with blood and skin, which was also covered with dirt from falling several times. Furthermore, the cross beams were mostly raw and not professionally hewn or even planed.

Jesus only carried the crossbar

Carrying the cross from the prison to the place of execution would have been impossible due to its weight. The condemned man only carried the crossbar, the patibulum, which, after the previous tortures, could only be mastered with the greatest effort. However, this was not done over one of the shoulders, as one carries a post, but tied over both of them. A crude wooden plaque (titulus) or a sign indicating the crime was carried ahead of the procession. It was later nailed with a stick above the head.

One nail for two legs

The nails were not driven through the palms of the hands but between the small bones of the wrists. Nails through the palms of the hands tear out between the fingers as they hold the weight of the body. The palms of the hands were only nailed when the wrists were tied to the beam to cause further pain when moving the hands. In fact, this form of crucifixion of Jesus was also possible; the Passion Reports give no details about it. Most of the time the delinquents were not nailed by the Romans at all. The wounds are only mentioned in the story of the unbelieving Thomas.

The crossed legs could be fastened with a nail through the chip, if an inclined board (suppedaneum) provided additional support. Another method was nailing through the tarsus near the ankle or through the heel bone