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Shroud Of Turin: A Miraculous Fake?
by Wayne Blank
Jesus Christ Was Buried In Cloths, Not A Cloth
The Jews had a specific manner of burying people at that time, which included the body being wrapped in strips of cloth, usually linen. A number of pieces were routinely used, not just one big piece. For example, Lazarus when he was resurrected:
"The dead man came out, his hands and feet bound with bandages, and his face wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, "Unbind him, and let him go." (John 11:43-44 KJV)
Lazarus didn't just throw off a big sheet, he had to be unbound, like a "mummy." The Christ was buried exactly the same way, according to Jewish burial customs of the time, wrapped in strips of cloth (i.e. cloths, not a cloth), not in a single sheet.
All 4 gospel books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John state that the burial of Jesus Christ was done by Joseph Of Arimathea and Nicodemus by wrapping the body in strips, not a single large sheet. Matthew 27:59, Mark 15:46, and Luke 23:53 describe Jesus' body being wrapped "in linen cloth," not "in a linen cloth." John 19:40 is much more specific, describing strips of linen cloth, not a single sheet, as is the Shroud of Turin. All of the actual eyewitnesses to the burial of the Christ would say that the "Shroud of Turin" could not be the burial cloth of Christ because He was buried in a number of strips of cloth, not a single cloth.
"Then took they the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes with the spices, as the manner of the Jews is to bury" (John 19:40 KJV)
When they entered the empty tomb after Christ's resurrection, what is described as being there was not a single-sheet shroud that became the Shroud of Turin, but strips of cloth, plural, "laid by themselves":
"Then arose Peter, and ran unto the sepulchre; and stooping down, he beheld the linen clothes laid by themselves" (Luke 24:12 KJV)
Jesus Christ Would Not Violate The Second Commandment
There were no cameras in ancient times, and yet we know what many people from the time of Christ looked like, from coins, statues and etchings. But not a single image of Christ was made by the thousands of people who knew exactly what He looked like. Why? Because they would not violate the Second Commandment - and neither would the Son of God by having His image produced on a cloth for millions to idolize as they do with that shroud. The Shroud of Turin, when it is used to worship, is a blatant violation of the Second Commandment against making religious images.
"You shall not make for yourself a graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth" (Exodus 20:4 KJV)
The Christ Was Horribly Beaten
Jesus Christ suffered a horrendous physical beating before He was crucified. His face wasn't just slightly swollen, as portrayed, if at all, by the man in the Shroud of Turin. Christ's face was horribly mutilated from punches, kicks and scourging (in that regard, Mel Gibson's film The Passion Of The Christ is somewhat accurate), as a fulfillment of another prophecy:
"His visage was so marred more than any man" (Isaiah 52:14 KJV)
The image in the Shroud of Turin does not show a "visage was so marred more than any man."
The Apostle Paul Would Not Call Christ "A Shame"
The apostle Paul (see Paul's Ministry) actually saw Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 9:1). Paul knew exactly what The Lord looked like. While styles of hair-length have changed back and forth over the centuries, in the time of Christ most men wore short hair. In 1 Corinthians 11:14, Paul wrote, "Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him?" Would Paul have made such a statement if the long-haired man in the shroud were Jesus Christ? Absolutely not. That would be blasphemous. Like Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, the apostle Paul would also say that the Shroud of Turin is not the burial cloth of Christ.
A Miraculous Fake?
As you have seen from the Scriptures, the Shroud of Turin cannot be Christ's burial cloth. There is much that remains unexplained about the mysterious Shroud of Turin however, including the question of how the image was made on the cloth. In that regard, it might have been "miraculously" produced, but not by God. For who it is that promotes idolatry and has the power to produce "miraculous" fakes, see the Fact Finder question below.
Fact Finder: Does Satan have the power to produce "lying wonders" for the purpose of diverting people away from the Truth found in the Word of God?