Did Jesus 'Sleep' Rather Than Die On The Cross?

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(This and the following post have been copied from the 'Jesus: Truth Or Myth?' thread.)
RE: Jesus


I read a book about how he was probably a member of this sect of healers. I can't remember the name sadly. ... I also imagine the ressurection thing could have been caused by tetrodoxin or so. It would be a good way to get down from the cross.
 
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rynner2

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... And one theory for the 'resurrection' is that it was a deliberately planned rescue by Joseph of Aramathea (who according to yet another story was in fact Jesus's father!). The vinegar on the sponge was drugged, as suggested by Xanatic, to induce death-like symptoms, even though JC had only been on the cross for 3 hours (crucifiction usually took days to kill). ...
 
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Mattattattatt

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(This and the following posts have been copied from the 'Jesus Christ: The Only Son Of God?' thread.)

No wonder the ancient Astronaut thing popped up. Is there any miracle in the Bible that couldn't be faked now, or just done? Especially to primitive people? Oh except the thing with the three-day-dead people...
 
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JackSkellington said:
Oh except the thing with the three-day-dead people...
That was probably the easiest one! Before the advent of modern medical technology, not to mention modern embalming, people were buried alive all the time. It's not that hard to resurrect somebody who wasn't really dead in the first place.

Nonny
 

rynner2

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JackSkellington said:
...the thing with the three-day-dead people...
Which people were these?

In the case of JC, he was supposed to have died late Friday afternoon, and was 'resurrected' very early on Sunday. By my reckoning, that's well under two days. (Which just goes to show that Christians can't count.)
 

Mattattattatt

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Lazarus had been dead 3 days, I believe, and he did stinketh.

Jesus never got to the stinkething stage, as he died on the cross and was taken down and away within a day (Good Friday). On sunday morning, if my memory serves correct he was found missing from the tomb by some of the women, and appeared in the Garden of Gethsemone. He then kept appearing and disappearing until the ascension 40 days later.

Jesus spent comparatively little time on the cross, and his body was removed straight away, where I believe he was attended to by monks. I'm sure everyone's familiar with the theories that Christ actually slept (was drugged by the "vinegar" on the sponge) and that the spear that pierced his side was used to release fluid that would otherwise had drowned his lungs. He was then supposedly healed using the much speculated secret medical know-how of the Essen monks, with whom Jesus studied in the desert. I believe the relevant FT article's recently been added to the site.

So we can see our way around that one, too...
 
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dot23

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... It's funny, but I posited the 'sleep drug' > resurrection link years ago at Uni, without any knowledge of the essenes. My theory was the 20 odd years where J has no recorded history were spent in the company of fakirs in India, who knew of herbal / meditational ways to induce death-like symptoms. one has to remember that the roman military had very little medical knowhow (if any) and wouldn't have been able to distinguish between extreme shallow breathing, slow heart rate etc and actual death.
 
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rynner2

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There is a theory that Joseph of Arimathea actually masterminded the recue of Jesus. The drugged vinegar has already been mentioned, and a bribed Roman soldier (Joseph was a rich man) could have given Jesus just a superficial wound with the spear.

Hence the 'early death', and the recovery of the 'body' in time to carry out healing.

If so, and Jesus did survive, he took great care to keep out of the hands of the Romans afterwards. Hence his low profile and the possibly disguised visits to the disciples, who sometimes failed to recognise him.
 

EnolaGaia

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... I believe the relevant FT article's recently been added to the site. ...
The FT article on this subject can still be accessed via the Wayback Machine. Here are the most relevant excerpts and a link to the full article.
Jesus Slept!
Did Jesus dies in a narcotic trance?
By Gloria Moss, June 2001

The idea that Jesus might not have died on the Cross, but was buried alive in some kind of narcotic trance, would have been a fatal heresy in the 12th century. But Gloria Moss has found some literary and herbal hints of this ‘secret’ among mediæval writers of classical romances.

Mysteries turn up in the strangest places. Buried in a story by the 12th-century writer Chrétien de Troyes is the tale of a beautiful woman who decides to escape an arranged marriage and elope with a young, handsome knight. Her motives are understandable enough, but the way she sets about it is strange indeed. Instead of simply eloping – an act that would tarnish her reputation – she decides to feign death and then run off in secret with her lover. To simulate her own death, she takes a narcotic potion and, three days after burial in a new tomb, is resurrected.

Parts of Chrétien’s story are strikingly familiar. There are elements not only of Romeo and Juliet – the potion, the tomb and the awakening – but also of the crucifixion story. Consider the parallels. The woman, like Jesus and Juliet, dies after taking a drink; she, like Jesus, is buried in a new tomb and restored to life three days later; even the heroine’s name, Fénice – the French for phœnix – serves as a reminder of Jesus, since the phœnix was used as a symbol of Christ and his resurrection in mediæval times. These and other allusions to the New Testament crucifixion story suggested that Chrétien was making a point. He was getting as near as he could to questioning a fundamental tenet of Christianity – Jesus’ resurrection. ...

Many questions suggest themselves. If Chrétien had reason to believe, for example, that Jesus took a narcotic potion on the cross, what could it have been? And are there any other traces in his work of a belief that Jesus survived the crucifixion?

Various people have suggested in the past that Jesus may have survived the crucifixion, citing as proof the fact that blood flowed from the lance wound after he was declared dead. (It is medical opinion that blood cannot flow from a corpse.) Two of the more recent books – The Jesus Conspiracy and The Holy Blood and The Holy Grail – suggest that he owed his survival to a potion containing opium and vinegar. The inclusion of vinegar should come as no surprise, since all the Gospel accounts, except Luke’s, refer to the fact that Jesus’ death followed his being offered a sponge soaked with vinegar.

The idea that the sponge contained opium might appear superficially attractive – even the first-century master of herbalism, Dioscorides (above, c. AD 60–75), refers to the sleep-inducing qualities of opium – but there are several arguments against it. First, the largest component in the opium, morphine, produces rapid breathing, a very different effect from the “giving up of the breath” reported of Jesus. Then, morphine is absorbed only slowly by the body, arguing against the sudden reaction reported after Jesus took the vinegar. Last but not least is the fact that vinegar, according to Dioscorides, counteracts every poison "and in particular opium." This would not be disputed today, since the effect of combining acetic acid (vinegar) with morphine sulphate (the narcotic component of opium) is to produce a substance – morphine acetate – which is less effective as a narcotic than the original morphine sulphate.

The idea that a vinegar-based potion contained opium can therefore be scotched. Ninth- and 12th-century sources point to another possibility. According to the Antidotarium of Nicolai of Salerno, a soporific sponge could be applied to patients’ nostrils to create a state of anæsthesia. He suggests that one of the substances in the sponge was mandrake.

According to Dioscorides, touching or eating the apple-like fruit of the plant could bring on tiredness, and the root and bark were even more potent. Cooked in vinegar, the root could leave a person unconscious for up to three or four hours, leading Dioscorides to recommend its use for “people about to be cut or cauterised (who) wish to become insensible to the pain.” The bark could produce a "dead sleep", and a whiff of it was enough to produce a death-like stupor.

In the 1890s, a doctor, Benjamin Ward Richardson, carried out experiments with mandrake. He administered a mixture of alcohol and mandrake root to pigeons and rabbits, and found that not only did it act as a "general anæsthetic of the most potent quality," but the "animals’ hearts continued to beat after their respiration had ceased." Interestingly, New Testament accounts describe Jesus as having "given up the breath." We now know that mandrake contains a mydriatic alkaloid, mandragorine (C17 H27 O3 N), which interferes with the transmission of nerve impulses across pathways. You only need to block a few pathways to produce a devastating effect and stop all sensation or control of movement.

There are references to mandrake in the Old Testament, showing that it grew in biblical lands (Genesis 30:14; Song of Songs 7:11–13). There also appear to be references to mandrake in the work of the first-century historian Josephus. Josephus refers to a plant ba’ar (a word meaning to burn) as having characteristics which are associated only with mandrake. He also says that it shines brightly at night – a feature of mandrake described elsewhere. Further, the root of mandrake came to be valued as a talisman, believed to confer on people their every wish. ...
FULL ARTICLE: (Wayback Machine):
https://web.archive.org/web/2008100...es.com/features/articles/500/jesus_slept.html
 

Ogdred Weary

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Some people can sleep anywhere, he can't have been very comfortable.
 

AlchoPwn

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What people generally don't realize is that crucifixion was sometimes used not as a method of execution but just as a punishment. While incredibly painful, the process wasn't necessarily lethal, and an individual was sometimes sentenced to crucifixion and to be removed from the cross after half a day, or a day or two days. It is worth noting that people were not always nailed to the cross, but were often merely bound to it. Often the individual had their legs broken, and they were almost always crucified naked to humiliate them. It is mainly due to the humiliation that Roman Citizens were not allowed to be crucified by law.

It is thus possible that an individual who was sentenced to crucifixion might not be sentenced to a public crucifixion and might instead be put thru the punishment in a private space, such as a garden, perhaps in Gethsemane, which was likely a privately owned olive grove. If their legs were not broken they might feasibly be up and about days later. Of course as the expectation was of an execution, then to see the person up and about would be a surprise. In any case, they would need a decent ability to resist pain to manage such a feat.
 
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