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Responses to Cross Survey


The original languages refer to the device that killed Jesus as a tree, stake, or pole - but no one wants to change their traditions.


The cross has become a symbol to Christians for the sacrifice of Jesus.


"Cross or Pole?"

    Survey Responses: (See Yellow Viewpoint)

Response to Survey Response

While we understand the need to protect the beloved symbols of times current and past, when those symbols become more important than the truth, we must be careful.

The response ignores:

1. The Greek definition of the term that is incorrectly interpreted as "cross" where the Greek word is "stauroo" meaning "stake, or pale". That it could have been a cross ignores the history that the punishment use of the cross by the Romans started well after (hundreds of years) the death of Christ. "Stake" is also used in the Complete Jewish Study Bible, the Scriptures (ISR), and the Sacred Scriptures Bethel Edition. The King James version uses the word "tree" for verses like Acts 5:30 and 1 Peter 2:24.

2. Regarding traditional interpretations of the Bible, traditions are what got the Pharisees and Sadducees in hot water with Jesus. Just because we have been doing something for a long time doesn't mean it is correct or true. I have a Hebrew/Greek/English Interlinear volume published in 1976 that interprets Acts 5:30, 10:39, and a host of other verses use the word "tree". There is a verse in Matthew 27:40 in which the same Interlinear translates the Greek word "staurou" as "cross", when the Greek Interlinear online clearly defines the word "stauroo" as stake. I hasten to add that just because "most people do it" does not make it true or right - just common (think Sunday instead of Sabbath, Easter and Christmas).

3. See the alternate possibilities of the stake execution below. Not necessarily a fact, but shows how easy it is for an idea to get implanted and become "truth". The first alternate below is from De Cruce by Justus Lipsius in 1595. Some say that this one cannot be used because Thomas spoke of the holes from the "nails" (plural) in His hands, so after hours of painstaking..., OK, minutes of creation, I added the second alternate. Note that the sign is above His head in both cases.

Also, though I have not been able to find a picture or image of any kind that shows alternate 2 below, how hard is it to imagine this as the alternative:

Stake of Christ

4. The word origin is of c. 1300 A.D. for the word "crucify", yet it is used to describe first century events in the modern Bibles. Granted, many articles state that the Romans used the cross starting several hundred years after Christ's death, so the concept was likely there before the word came around. I have a problem with much of the theology and practices of the JWs, but also with the Catholics, most Protestants, and others as well, but they all get some things right.

5. The original meaning of the cross was to identify association with the pagan god Tammuz, evidently started back between 1000 B.C. and 550 B.C. Are we adopting that as well? Remember warnings about images and worshiping our God as the pagans do theirs.

As for the side note, didn't the OT builders have to send to Lebanon for cedars with which to build? Sure they had olive trees, but I wouldn't want to build with them or try to get a stake from one tall enough to plant in the ground and then crucify a man. Not necessarily facts of practice, just other possibilities...

My point on this entire discussion is not for just today, but for the period during the times of the Antichrist. If the sign of the "cross" is actually a sign of the god Tammuz where the image of the cross may have begun, and not used for the death of Jesus, then how hard will it be for the Antichrist to get us to take it as his sign? Not that this exact thing will happen, but if we are already ignoring God's day, and worshiping Him on pagan Holidays, and trashing His law, how hard will the Antichrist have to work to get us to accept just one more thing that we may already be doing...?

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Cross Discussions ::

Responses to Cross Survey



Reader response to the Cross or Pole (Stake) discussion

I disagree with the Jehovah's Witnesses argument that Christ was crucified on a stake for the following reasons:

1) The literal translation does not exclude the possibility of a cross. It's most common definition is wood. It could have been a stake or a cross.

2) Traditionally it has been accepted as a cross and most scholars that establish the NASB, KJV, NKJV, NIV versions of the Bible seem to agree on this. "Stake" is not used except for in the JW bible - New World Translation.

3) Matthew 27:37 states and they put up above his head the charge against Him which read,"THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS." (Above His head, not hands. There are other indications throughout the Bible that indicate it was a cross as well.)

4) And mostly; with the majority of the conversations that I have had with Jehovah's Witnesses , if not all, it was my belief that it was their intention for me to doubt the Bible I read from. (NASB, KJV, NKJV, NIV.) Their approach is to use DOUBT to win the argument, so that their bible - the New World Translation, which has been clearly altered from original text in many places - becomes authoritative.

5) And in congruence to 4; I don't see how it would make a difference if it was a stake. Christ was crucified and because of His death we all have the opportunity to have our sins forgiven.

On a side note, the statement in the argument for for a stake about Das Kreuz und die Kreuzigung (The Cross and the Crucifixion), by Hermann Fulda, states: "Trees were not everywhere available at the places chosen for public execution..." Was he there? How does he know if there were no trees around?