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- Obviously “the man of the cloth” was a criminal found guilty of a capital offense who was unusually both severely scourged and crucified. Under Jewish law the body should have been buried before sundown, probably in one of the two plots specifically reserved for criminals.
- As a criminal, this man had been buried making use of a rare and very expensive cloth of fine linen with a unique, herringbone weave—a type of cloth not manufactured during the Middle Ages. The cloth fits the Biblical description of a high-priestly undergarment (tunic).
- The image is of a real man—approximately 5' 11", 175 lbs., 30-35 years of age, with distinctive Jewish traits (e.g., hair in a pigtail)—who had undergone a unique crucifixion, matching the crucifixion of Jesus in the Biblical record. In that regard, one should take note of the fact that the emperor, Constantine, outlawed crucifixion in the early fourth century.
- Pollen and floral images found on the cloth provide forensic evidence for a likely Jerusalem presence and for some key locations on what was likely the historical trail the Shroud traveled before residing in Turin, Italy over the past several centuries.
- The depiction of a Jewish burial and a Roman crucifixion found on this image is “not what any forger with medieval or modern presuppositions would have thought of; but it makes complete sense of the texts and comforts with the other ancient evidence." — John T. Robinson (New Testament Scholar)
- The incredible, faint, full-body image of a crucified man on the cloth was not the work of an artist.
(This was the primary conclusion reached by a team of 33 scientists who were permitted special access to examine the cloth and performed the most extensive study of the artifact.)
- No one has been able to explain how the image could have formed by natural causes, nor has anyone been able to fully replicate it!
- Why, if a forgery, is the image a negative? Why would a medieval forger produce such an image when neither he nor any of his contemporaries could have seen the positive details? Those striking details were first made visible with the work of a photographer in the year 1898.
- How could a medieval ‘artist’ make or take a photo negative when photography was not introduced to the world until 500 years later in 1839?
- The infamous C-14 experiment in 1988 that dated the cloth from 1260-1390 AD has been discredited by more than a dozen peer-reviewed papers published in professional journals in recent years.
- Several historical witnesses exist providing testimony to the burial cloth being much older than the date determined by the infamous C-14 experiment. Such witnesses include artifacts like the iconic 6th-century painting of the Christ Pantocrator in St. Catherine's Monastery, the 7th-century Justinian II Solidus gold coin, the Sudarium of Oviedo face cloth that has been in Spain since the early 7th century, and the Pray Manuscript, a codex dated to 1192-1195 AD.
Either the image is “the riddle of the ages” (TIME Magazine), or it is "the Father’s witness" to the Gospel story(cf. 1 John 5:5-13) and His miraculous, gracious gift to every believer and to every doubting Thomas.
- The inexplicable characteristics of the image, along with the amazing facts presented above, when taken together, causes me to conclude that, next to love (cf. John 13:35) and the transforming power of the Holy Spirit working in the lives of believers (cf. 1 John 10.5a; 2 Cor 3.2-3, 12-18; Gal 5.22-24), the Shroud of Turin (with its miraculous image) is the greatest apologetic (i.e., defense) believers have for the truthfulness of the Christian Faith! Personally, I know agnostics and even atheists who have come to faith due largely to the evidence of the Shroud's testimony (cf. 1 John 5:8-9). What is your conclusion about this amazing image, dear reader?
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