After reading up on this it seems like Jesus pussed out by taking an afternoon's crucifixion over a week's impalement. Now that's suffering. So why take crucifixion instead? Think about it.

A messiah on a cross with arms wide is a more appealing symbol than a messiah-ke-bob with a spike up his ass. Imagine the statues and symbols of the latter adorning the altars, necklaces, and shrines of the world.

Think of poor Doubting Thomas. What does he do to verify the wounds of the risen impaled Jesus? ("Until I push my fist up his gaping backside, I will not believe.") And just imagine what impalement stigmata would be like. (Padre Pio: "I've been walking funny and shitting jets of blood for a week! Praise his holy name!")

Maybe Jesus wasn't wimping out, so much as engaging in a bit of far-sighted public relations.

In ancient Rome, the term "crucifixion" could also refer to impalement. This derives in part because the term for the one portion of a cross is synonymous with the term for a stake, so that when mentioned in historical sources without specific context, the exact method of execution, whether crucifixion or impalement, can be unclear. [...] The longitudinal penetration could be through the rectum, through the vagina, or through a wound opened specifically for the occasion, such as making a transverse incision to the os sacrum. [...] The survival time on the stake is quite variedly reported, from instantly or to a few minutes to a few hours or 1 to 3 days. The Dutch overlords at Batavia, present day Jakarta, seem to have been particularly proficient in prolonging the lifetime of the impaled, one witnessing a man surviving 6 days on the stake, another hearing from local surgeons that some could survive 8 or more days.

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Well, it means that if Jesus was gay as some speculate, he wasn't a size queen. (j/k)

Some speculate that the Jewish King David was gay, and there is a Bible verse to incite such speculation, but everybody ignores it.

Some speculate that the Jewish King David was gay, and there is a Bible verse to incite such speculation, but everybody ignores it.

“When David had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was bound to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul. Saul took him that day and would not let him return to his father’s house. Then Jonathan made a covenant with David, because he loved him as his own soul. Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that he was wearing, and gave it to David, and his armor, and even his sword and his bow and his belt.” - 1 Samuel 18:1-4

“You son of a perverse, rebellious woman! Do I not know that you have chosen [David] the son of Jesse to your own shame and to the shame of your mother’s nakedness**? For as long as the son of Jesse lives upon the earth, neither you nor your kingdom shall be established.” - 1 Samuel 20:30

“David rose from beside the stone heap and prostrated himself with his face to the ground. He bowed three times and they kissed each other and wept with each other; David wept the more. Then Jonathan said to David, ‘Go in peace, since both of us have sworn in the name of the Lord, saying, “The Lord shall be between me and you, and between my descendants and your descendants, forever.” ’ He got up and left; and Jonathan went into the city.” -1 Samuel 20:41-42

“Saul and Jonathan, beloved and lovely!
In life and in death they were not divided;
they were swifter than eagles,
they were stronger than lions.
How the mighty have fallen in the midst of battle!
Jonathan lies slain upon your high places.
I am distressed for you my brother Jonathan;
Greatly beloved were you to me;
your love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women.”
(2 Samuel 1:23, 26-27)

**A reference to sexual impropriety (as extensively listed in Leviticus). "None of you shall approach to any that is near of kin to him, to uncover their nakedness: I am the Lord. The nakedness of thy father, or the nakedness of thy mother, shalt thou not uncover: she is thy mother; thou shalt not uncover her nakedness. [...]" Leviticus 18:618

Ah so you have found it (or should I say verses).  The first time I uncovered such passages was seven years ago in my Old Testament class in seminary.  When I saw them, I thought: WTF!, and the professor glossed over them. I looked around the room to see if anyone else caught what I had read, and yet no one seemed to notice what was suggested within them.  At best, what was said of them was "David and Johnathan were very close friends," and the love spoken of between them was in a fraternal context, rather than any suggestion that what was revealed was homosexual.

Needless to say, it left me scratching my head as to why no one else saw what I had seen. Of course, I rationalized my way out of the predicament in order to maintain orthodoxy. 

According to a thesis published in 2010 in Sweden, there may not have actually been crucifixion at the time Jesus was alleged to have been killed.  This got buried in a hurry :)  Here's an article about it.

Uh-oh, Christians: a smoking gun!

Ancient Greek, Latin and Hebrew literature from Homer to the first century describe a number of suspension punishments, but none mention "crosses" or "crucifixion." [...] Samuelsson, a committed Christian, alleges the Bible has been misinterpreted, saying there are no explicit references to the use of nails or to crucifixion - only that Jesus bore a "staurus" towards Calvary, which can also mean "pole," his research states.

It's not surprising that although the thesis was never repudiated, it was buried under a mountain of dust.  It was such a bombshell, you'd think if there was a repudiation, that it would have come fast and furious - but no.  Silence and a hope that it would all go away, was the response from the christian organisations.

It's not surprising that although the thesis was never repudiated, it was buried under a mountain of dust.  It was such a bombshell, you'd think if there was a repudiation, that it would have come fast and furious - but no.

Here is the abstract and the complete doctoral thesis document (400 pages, pdf). We can't let something that juicy stay buried now can we?

Silence and a hope that it would all go away, was the response from the christian organisations.

Sounds like someone I know.

What are the implications of the mix-up between crucifixion and impalement for Saint Peter? Is the prominent tush in the painting below meant as a subtle clue? Like a kind of Da Vinci Code indicating Peter's actual method of execution? Could there be a hidden sect somewhere guarding this terrible secret?

The death of St. Peter is attested to by Tertullian at the end of the 2nd century, and by Origen in Eusebius, Church History III.1. Origen wrote: "Peter was crucified at Rome with his head downwards, as he himself had desired to suffer." This is why an upside down cross is generally accepted as a symbol of Peter, who would not have considered himself worthy enough to die the same way as his Savior.

Hanging him upside down would have caused the blood to rush to his head, and he would have passed out quite soon after he was 'posted'.  Not quite as brave, after all...

Hanging him upside down would have caused the blood to rush to his head, and he would have passed out quite soon after he was 'posted'.  Not quite as brave, after all...

Not only that: impaling him upside down would cause the spike to pass first through the vital organs of the upper chest, instead of through the less vital organs of the lower abdomen.

The big chicken.

On a recent edition of “Qi” it was mentioned that the Spanish Inquisition used to impale their victims in such a way that it did take between 5-7 days to die. It entered their anus and gravity took over. It passed up through them, missing vital organs and eventually exited through their shoulder blade. The Inquisition itself lasted a few hundred years. Any Catholics about that would like to comment?

I had a thought once that the Catholic Church had created such a hatred of Jews and murdered so many of them that Hitler remained unchallenged for too long. If the Catholic Church was not so steeped in anti-Jewish pogroms itself it might have acted to halt Hitler’s rise to power. A little off topic….and this is a great topic….thanks Gallup’s Mirror.

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