Atonement (Part 4)

The Light (Pakistan), 16th July 1922 Issue (Vol. 1, No. 15, p. 2)

[Related: Parts: 1, 2, 3 and 5]

Thus, from what has been said in the previous instalments of this article, it is evident that Jesus [AS] did not expire on the cross. As a matter of fact, he was in a state of swoon when he was taken down, and the soldiers either by mistake or through sympathy with him announced that he was already dead.

The two malefactors who were hanged with him were not dead by that time and hence their legs were broken to finish their lives; but the breaking of legs was dispensed with in the case of Jesus [AS], which establishes the fact that he did not die on the cross.

The piercing of the side and the gushing forth of blood and water are another sure sign of life. The Ency­clopaedia Biblica, writing on the death of Jesus [AS], observes:

“The hypothesis is based on John, 19:34, where we read that one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith there came out blood and water. From a critical point of view, we can hardly say that Jesus received this wound after he breathed his last is well established.”

Thus, it is clear that Jesus [AS] did not expire on the cross, and that is why

“the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate, […. ] saying: […. ] Com­mand that the sepulchre be made sure lest his disciples come by night and take him away.” [Matthew, 62, 63 and 64]

If Jesus [AS] was really dead there was no fear of his being stolen away, as nobody will choose to steal a dead body. In short, the Jews themselves were not certain of Jesus’ [AS] death on the cross, and were therefore anxious to take further steps.

It is simply wonderful to note that the Holy Quran has exactly passed the same verdict and has plainly said that the assertion of the Jews with regard to the crucifixion of Jesus [AS] is not based upon a reality, and that they are not sure of it. The Holy Quran says:

“And their saying: Surely, we have killed the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, the apostle of Allah, and they did not kill him nor did they crucify him, but the matter was made dubious to them. And most surely those who differ therein are only in a doubt about it. They have no knowledge respecting it; but only follow a conjecture, and they did not kill him for certain” (The Holy Quran, 4:157). (Italics are mine.)

[Read the next part: ‘Part 5’]