April 02, 2006

Crucifixion Medical Study Followup

Matthew Maslen, one of the authors a study called “Medical theories on the cause of death in crucifixion” commented on my earlier post about the study. After re-reading my comments I realize I came off a bit hard on his cohort Dr. Mitchell --- when really my annoyance was mostly centered on the press coverage. The quotes picked, and some of the content of the quotes were in my mind beyond the scope of the study.

This was based by the apparent focus of the study, the cause of death, not the method. However I’m basing on the press release and the title of the study, so in all fairness --- I may have misconceptions about it, as Matthew pointed out.

That said, if what is in question is the “typical” painting or sculpture of Christ on the cross --- well then I might be in agreement, there is no actual evidence that those icons are in any way accurate (the Gospel accounts simply aren't that detailed --- why would they need to be the readers saw crucifixions all the time.) If however, you are talking about the general concept of crucifixion and the Gospel account --- well then I have a bone to pick. It was therefore the wording and phrasing on the press coverage that irked me, this was not clearly defined.

Have you ever gone back and read something you wrote and thought --- perhaps I could have said that a little better, or in a more generous way? Well I feel that way about what I wrote earlier --- at least in respect to the authors of the study --- but in no way to the press coverage in general. I still feel that was rubbish.

Lastly, I’m glad this sort of study is being done, and I do think it was useful --- I wish more seriousness was paid to the subject --- just without all the questionable press converge.

An article to go along with the image above can be found here.


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