Jehovah Witnesses : can you explain John 20: 24-25?

JW do not believe our Lord Jesus Christ died on a Cross , They believe he was hung on a post or something similar to than , with his hands upwards . The watchtower several times has shown Jesus hung with ONE nail hammered in between both his hands . However Thomas says some thing i find to contradict the watchtower on John 20 : 24-25 and this is straight from the NWT version witch is the JW bible . it reads 24 But Thomas, one of the twelve, who was called The Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 Consequently the other disciples would say to him: “We have seen the Lord!” But he said to them: “Unless I see in his hands the print of the nails and stick my finger into the print of the nails and stick my hand into his side, I will certainly not believe.” notice thomas is referring to Nails , witch means 2 or more , again JW , explain why the WT only shows Jesus with ONE nail ?

20 Answers

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago
    Favorite Answer


    Some have tried to use the plural "nails" in Jn 20:25 as evidence that Jesus was hung on a cross. Yet to do this they must completely ignore all logical alternatives and more importantly they must ignore the explicit statements of Scripture.

    First, the Bible explicitly states that Jesus was hung on a STAUROS or XYLON. According to Greek dictionaries these words denote a stake or pole:

    Vines Expository Dictionary says: "STAUROS....denotes, primarily, an upright pale or stake. ...originally to be distinguished from the ecclesiastical form of a two beamed cross...By the middle of the 3rd cent. A.D. the churches had either DEPARTED FROM, OR HAD TRAVESTIED, certain doctrines of the Christian faith...pagans were permitted largely to retain their pagan signs and symbols."

    So, using the plural "nails" to claim that Jesus was hung on a cross would be to contradict the explicit teaching of the bible. Teaching that he was hung on a cross is absolutely unbiblical.

    Also, Witnesses are not dogmatic about how many nails were used in the arms. In fact, there is actually archeological evidence that four nails could have been used, two in the hands placed on both sides of a stake and two similarly in the feet. This was pointed out in a WT article: w87 8/15 (The archaeological evidence was of an leg bone with one nail stuck *sideways* into the ankle. Israel Exploration Journal 1985, v. 35, pgs 22-7). Historical facts show that the Romans often put individuals to death on posts having no crossbars.

    Thomas' use of the plural "nails" does not have to be understood as a precise description indicating that each of Jesus' hands was pierced by a separate nail. Luke 24:39 suggests that Christ's feet also were nailed. Since Thomas made no mention of nail prints in Jesus' feet, his use of the plural "nail's" could have been a general reference to multiple nails used in impaling Jesus. So, grammatically the plural "nails" could have meant a nail through each hand, or might have simply included both nail prints in ‘his hands and his feet.'

    Claiming that two nails in the arms MUST mean crucifixion on a cross is to illogically force our favored interpretation while ignoring the evidence for other conclusions. This is a fallacious form of reasoning and eisogesis.

    So, Thomas' statement cannot be used to show the Jesus was executed upon a cross since it is just as reasonable to believe Christ was impaled to a stake with a separate nail in each arm.

    What is the most important thing for Christians is how the Cross was introduced into Christianity. Notice the above quote from Vine's Dictionary says that the cross was adopted after the church had "either DEPARTED FROM, OR HAD TRAVESTIED, certain doctrines of the Christian faith...pagans were permitted largely to retain their pagan signs and symbols."

    The cross had been used in paganism for centuries. The adoption of the cross into Christianity can be traced directly to the Emperor Constantine three hundred years after Christ. Constantine was still a Sun-God worshiper when he saw a vision of a cross which he adopted as his victory sign.

    So the use of the cross was a corruption of true Christianity. This is proven by solid evidence from history and archaeology:

    Two hundred years after Christ Minucius Felix revealed the attitude that early Christians had toward the cross: "Crosses, moreover, we neither worship nor wish for. You, indeed, who consecrate gods of wood, adore wooden crosses perhaps as parts of your gods. . . . Your victorious trophies not only imitate the appearance of a simple cross, but also that of a man affixed to it." (The Ante-Nicene Fathers, v. 4, p. 191)

    Notice, that this early church father said that Christians did not have crosses and never thought of having one. Only pagans at that time used it.

    The apostate Christianity that arose several hundred years after Christ decided to adopt the pagan symbol for the god Tammuz and use it for worship in their religion. When the Bible was translated into modern languages the mistranslation of "cross" was inserted because of Roman Catholic tradition.

    Should Christians venerate such a symbol as pagans have in the past? The Scriptures are clear as to what True worshipers are to do with sacred objects from false religion. I does NOT say: "Adopt them and change their meaning"!

    2 Cor.6:14-18: "What agreement can we have with idols? That is why the Lord has said, ‘Leave them; separate yourselves from them; DON'T TOUCH THEIR FILTHY THINGS."–NLT (Cf. De.12:30,31; Ex.20:4,5; 1Cor.10:14; Ex.20:4,5.)

    God does not tolerate mixing of idolatrous practices with true worship, as is illustrated by his condemnation of calf worship, even though the Israelites said they were still worshiping the True God. (Ex 32:3-10)


  • durfee
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    John 20 25

  • 9 years ago

    First of all 'Jim' has it all wrong and needs to stop looking at Apostate web-sites that twist everything. Secondly, the way of torture at that time was for the 'criminal' to slowly suffocate. The only way that would happen it for the arms to be above the head, the nail pieced into both hands, which the accused rib cage would give out and so would their lungs from the stress of hanging. Thus, that explains why they would break the person's legs; to speed up death. In Jesus Christ's situation, he was already dead when they went to break his legs. This and many other facts were prophesied in advance.

    Third: The writer choose to use the expression nail verses nails but it doesn't mean there were multiple nails or one nail, we do not know for sure. An interesting note; Ancient nails were quite similar to the larger modern ones, although some kinds had four-sided shanks and a longer taper to the point than those in use today. Ornamental nails have been discovered that were made of bronze overlaid with gold foil, and these are said to date back to about 1300-1200B.C.E. Nails used in the construction of Solomon's temple is said: "The weight for the nails was fifty gold shekels(1.5 lb)--2 Chron. 3:8, 9

    In 1968, in an excavated tom located just NE of Jerusalem, the remains were found of a Jew who was execute in the first century by being attached to a torture stake. As shown by subsequent studies, an iron nail 11.5 cm (4.5in.) long were still piercing the right heel bone. This nail may be similar to the nails employed by the Roman soldiers to impale Jesus Christ. Thus Thomas did not believe Christ was resurrected until after hew saw the print of the nails in Jesus' flesh. John 20:24-29

    Reliving Jesus' Last Days on Earth

  • 9 years ago

    When they had impaled him they distributed his outer garments by casting lots.” Little detail is given, as in Mark, Luke and John. After Jesus’ resurrection, Thomas said: “Unless I see in his hands the print of the nails and stick my finger into the print of the nails and stick my hand into his side, I will certainly not believe.” (John 20:25) So even though criminals sometimes were bound to a stake with ropes, Jesus was nailed. Some have also concluded from John 20:25 that two nails were used, one through each hand. But does Thomas’ use of the plural (nails) have to be understood as a precise description indicating that each of Jesus’ hands was pierced by a separate nail?

    In Luke 24:39 the resurrected Jesus said: “See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself.” This suggests that Christ’s feet also were nailed. Since Thomas made no mention of nailprints in Jesus’ feet, his use of the plural “nails” could have been a general reference to multiple nails used in impaling Jesus.

    Thus, it just is not possible at this point to state with certainty how many nails were used. Any drawings of Jesus on the stake should be understood as artists’ productions that offer merely a representation based on the limited facts that we have. Debate over such an insignificant detail should not be permitted to becloud the all-important truth that “we became reconciled to God through the death of his Son.”—Romans 5:10.

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  • 9 years ago

    It has been scientifically proved that if a person was nailed on a cross their hands would not be able to hold their weight but if their hands were nailed together over their head that they could support their weight, this is why they broke the legs of those who clung on to life because once their legs were broken they could not support their weight so they slowly suffocated which would not happen if their arms were to their side, this is why the Romans tied different ones to a tee because they didn't want them to die right away, it took days to die and that was the purpose for that type of execution but their hands were tied and not nailed because nails would not hold a hand and rip threw the flesh!

    " LOOK IT UP"!

  • 9 years ago

    Good point here are 21 more strange beliefs they have

    1. God is not a Trinity; the doctrine is inspired by the Devil

    2. Jesus is not to be worshiped or prayed to-he is only an angel (a.k.a. Michael the archangel)

    3. Jesus Christ is a "created being," who at one time did not exist

    4. The Holy Spirit is not a person but is "God's active force" i.e. gravity, electricity etc.

    5. Heaven is hope only for select Jehovah's Witnesses. The majority of JWs hope to live on "paradise earth"

    6. Heaven is limited only to 144,000 Jehovah's Witnesses.There are only 9,105 alive today (2006 figures)

    7. Jehovah's Witnesses are the only "true Christians." All churches and denominations are considered "false religion"

    8. There is no Hell or eternal judgment ("Hell" is simply the grave)

    9. There is no life after death except for the 144,000 Jehovah's Witnesses

    10. Salvation is earned only by being a loyal Jehovah's Witness

    11. Jesus second coming happened invisibly and secretly in 1914

    12. The "first resurrection" occurred in 1918

    13. Jesus did not rise from the dead bodily but as a spirit being

    14. Jesus was equal to Adam (just a man)

    15. Jesus could have sinned and failed in his mission

    16. Jesus was not born the savior but became the savior at his baptism

    17. God is not omnipresent

    18. God is not omniscient

    19. JWs are not sure of their salvation

    20. All earthly governments are controlled by the Devil

    21. The Holy Spirit is only available to select Jehovah's Witnesses

  • 5 years ago

    1 John 4.2-3 says: "having come in the flesh". The word 'come' is in the perfect tense in the original Greek, which is a completed action in the past, the results of which continue in the present and stresses permanency. In other words, according to John, Jesus ressurection was physical, whatever those who call themselves Jehovah's Witnesses say to the contrary.

  • Brian
    Lv 5
    9 years ago

    Interesting thing about this is that he would be looking for the nail holes in Jesus hands rather than the actual nails.

    You hang somebody on a cross with two nails, you have a hole in each hand.

    You hang somebody on a pole with one nail, you have a hole in each hand.

    Here is what was written about this. Take it or leave it, it is up to you:

    After Jesus’ resurrection he appeared to some of the disciples, but the apostle Thomas was not present. When told what had occurred, Thomas responded: “Unless I see in his hands the print of the nails and stick my finger into the print of the nails and stick my hand into his side, I will certainly not believe.” (John 20:25) Since Thomas mentioned nails (plural), some have wondered whether a nail was hammered through each of Christ’s hands.

    If we read just the Bible accounts of the actual impalement, we would know very little about how Jesus was impaled. The Gospel writers state only that he was impaled or fastened to the stake. They do not say in their accounts of the impaling how this was accomplished, whether by Christ’s being transfixed with the stake forced through part of the body, by being tied to the pole or by being nailed to it.—Matt. 27:35; Mark 15:25; Luke 23:33; John 19:18.

    However, following Jesus’ resurrection, Thomas’ comment in John 20:25 indicates clearly that Jesus’ hands were nailed to the stake. But in what way? We do not know. The Bible does not say whether his hands were nailed one on top of the other with a single nail through them both, or side by side with a separate nail through each. If the latter was the case, Thomas’ remark could be understood as applying only to Jesus’ hands.

    There is, though, another possibility that cannot be ruled out. Many scholars believe that a nail or nails pierced Jesus’ feet, fixing them to the post directly or to a small platform attached to the stake. Jesus himself may have referred to wounds in his hands and his feet on another occasion when he appeared to the disciples. So as to convince them that he really was the resurrected Jesus, he said: “See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself.” (Luke 24:39) Thomas did not specifically mention Jesus’ feet. But his comment about “the print of the nails” may have included Christ’s hands and feet, though only the hands were named.

    Often in the Watch Tower Society’s publications Jesus has been illustrated as being impaled with a single nail through his two hands and another nail piercing his two feet. This is only an artist’s conception, but it is quite possible that this is how Jesus was impaled.

    While such technical matters are of some interest, the major thing to keep in mind about Jesus’ death is what it accomplished. One point is that it ended the obligation to keep the Mosaic law, for God took “it out of the way by nailing it to the torture stake.” (Col. 2:14) By his integrity to God even during the agony and death on the stake, Jesus proved that out of love humans can serve Jehovah faithfully no matter what temptations and pressures Satan brings. And Jesus’ death on the stake provided the ransom, the price to release believing mankind from bondage to sin and death.—1 Tim. 2:5, 6; 2 Cor. 5:14, 15.

  • 9 years ago

    Jim :You need to engage your brain before speaking. J.W.'s believe that Jesus came in the flesh but that he was resurrected as a spirit person according to 1 Corinthians 15:50 which says "Flesh and Blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God." and other scriptures.

  • Jim
    Lv 7
    9 years ago

    JW's do not believe in Jesus in the flesh, therefore they are Antichrists. Quote from their OWN bible NWT: II John: 7= "For many deceivers have come forth into the world, persons not confessing Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the Antichrist". They believe that Jesus died and arose in a "fake" body made by Jehovah. And, that He has been here "invisibly" ruling earth from Heaven since 1914, which is an insult to Christians, considering how terrible things have been since 1914. Also, they reject the Cross and call it "paganistic". C.T.Russell, their founder practiced black Magic, and was a known freemason. His brother was the founder of The Skull And Bones, which is group of rich Satan Worshipers.

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