Ancient Jewish and Christian perceptions of crucifixion by David W. Chapman

By David W. Chapman

David W. Chapman examines moment Temple and early rabbinic literature and fabric is still so one can display the diversity of historic Jewish perceptions approximately crucifixion. Early Christian literature is then proven to mirror know-how of, and interplay with, those Jewish perceptions. old Jewish old bills of crucifixion are tested, magical literature is analyzed, and the proverbial use of crucifixion imagery is studied. He will pay distinct realization to Jewish interpretations of key previous testomony texts that point out human physically suspension in organization with execution. prior stories have validated how pervasive in antiquity was once the view of the pass as a poor and shameful dying. during this quantity, the writer offers additional proof of such perspectives in historical Jewish groups. extra confident perceptions may be hooked up to crucifixion insofar because the loss of life should be linked to the blameless patient or martyr in addition to with latent sacrificial photographs. Christian literature, proclaiming a crucified Messiah, betrays information of those a variety of perceptions by means of trying to reject or remodel adverse stereotypes, or by means of embracing a few of these extra optimistic institutions. hence early Christian literature at the pass indicates, to a better measure than is often well-known, a mirrored image upon a number of the Jewish perceptions of the pass in antiquity

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It is unwarranted to claim that Π*7Γ) cannot be used of crucifixion unless it is joined with TI. Rather, some of the examples cited above show that, at least by the Second Temple period, biblical passages using îlbn could be understood to refer to crucifixion. Thus nbn by itself may be understood in certain contexts (and possibly in certain communities) to bear crucifixion associations. 2 Aramaic ZQP An important passage in the Babylonian Talmud records that Rabbi Eleazar ben Simeon, in collusion with the Roman authorities, sent a man to the cross as a thief (b.

7:1 [48c]; b. Git. 70b (a crucified man signals for a writ of divorce); m. Sabb. 6:10; y. Sabb. 6:9 [8c]; b. Sabb. 67a (a nail used in crucifixion); m. Ohol. 3:5; t. Ohol. 4:11; b. Nid. 71b (the dripping blood of a crucified person). To these add some of the Aramaic passages cited earlier in our discussion of Cohn's work; and further passages will arise in later chapters of this book. Fourth, Baumgarten unduly limits his study of the way in which ancient Jewish translations and interpreters rendered the use of Π*7Π in the Hebrew Bible.

Jerusalem: Bialik Institute, 1957— 1977), 2:474, 597, 6 0 9 . " N o t e that the victim must still b e breathing (ΠΕ273 12 2TE? JET *72); also cited with Tannaitic authority in j>. Git. 7:1 [48c]. Especially note the rabbinic w o r k s analysed in chapter five, §§2 and 3 (including Sem. ii. 11, w h i c h assumes that the b o d y decays until it is unrecognizable while being cruci­ fied - using 21*725). Perhaps here it also should b e noted that sade is connected with J e s u s ' crucifixion in the early medieval Midrash ha- Otiot version Β - a fact that Figueras attributes in part to the crucifixion term and in part d u e to the shape of the letter 25; Pau Figueras, " A Midrashic Interpretation of the Cross as a S y m b o l , " Studii Biblici Franciscani Liber Annuus 30 (1980): 1 5 9 - 6 3 (dating the passage to the fourth-seventh centuries).

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