was jesus ‘hanged’ or ‘hung’ on the cross?

now this story is hard to pass up.

the english language can be quite difficult. for instance, many people have particular difficulty with the past tense of the verb ‘to hang.’ the general rule of thumb is that objects are ‘hung,’ as in, ‘we hung the ornaments on the christmas tree.’ however, human beings are ‘hanged,’ as in, ‘the bandit was hanged by the neck until dead.’ then, of course, there is the slang term ‘he is hung’ meaning a man is particularly well endowed.

well, one church in warr acres, oklahoma wants to take all the confusion out of the word by combining all three forms into one glorious painting.

imagine if you will a painting of jesus hanging on the cross. imagine that painting is the famed san damiano cross from the san damiano chapel in asisi, italy, which according to legend, is the very cross that spoke to st. francis of asisi in the year 1205. remember that st. francis of asisi was famous for his acts of poverty, humility and charity to the world. now, imagine a local church, st. charles church in warr acres, oklahoma, commissions a local artist, janet jaime, to produce a replica of the famed painting, seen below in various forms. now imagine that the artist forgets a brush stroke or two. the result is the painting below on the bottom right.

San Damiano's Crucifix San Damiano Crucifix
San Damiano's Crucifix San Damiano's Crucifix

jesus either works out a lot or is really happy to see you in church. i’m not saying that it’s obvious… but, well… who am i kidding? of course it’s obvious! look at that. honestly! how hard is it to draw abs that don’t look like a crotch rocket? seriously. of all the crosses that could have spoken to and inspired st. francis, this is the one?

the presence of this oversized painting in a house of worship is hard to swallow for some and resistance has stiffened. recently, some parishioners of the church where this painting was erected have left because of the prolonged controversy. and can you blame them? how can one worship with that hanging over the altar?

it seems, however, this crisis of faith will soon come to an end. reports today are that the head of the congregation has asked the local artist who was commissioned to paint the crucifix, to add a few strokes to the masterpiece in order to delineate jesus’ six-pack abs. that way, no one will be offended, but christians throughout warr acres, oklahoma can still proudly proclaim that jesus was indeed hung on a cross.

i promise you this: this is the last time i model for a painting!

(with thanx and a hat tip to scott bailey.)


10 Responses

  1. Did anyone think to consult the koine Greek in all of this? The word stauro (verb) would resolve this, especially if confined to its usage and meaning in the 1st century…even in its common usage related to non-punishment, objects were fastened, not ‘hanged’.

  2. lol. good stuff… “where the painting was erected” ha! well played.

  3. I had to laugh in class today when you mixed up “drank” and “drunk.”

  4. the past tense is difficult. :)

  5. Artist goes “Whoops…”

    Hilarity Ensues.

  6. mr./dr. crgill,
    i do not see your humor on this topic. not that it meant to be funny to you, but, by the first sentence of your article, “now this story is hard to pass up” and just the title.
    are you a christian?
    do you believe jesus was born to mary/virgin?
    with all your education, i am puzzled with your comments and blog.

  7. john,
    you may not see the humor, or the controversy at the local church, but everyone else does. that painting looks a bit off, certainly different than the one that inspired it.
    the pun piece is designed to bring some humor to a delicate subject.
    btw – ‘are you a xn’ and ‘do you believe jesus was born to mary/virgin’ are two different questions.
    and there really is a consistent theme running through both my posts and my comments, it’s just not in a particular ‘camp’ or denominational orthodoxy.

  8. you did not answer the questions i asked.

    and your theme sounds to be sarcasm.

    blessings to you.

  9. i try to limit sarcasm to stories i file in the humor, satire, or ‘i’m not making this up’ files.
    as to your questions, i answer yes, yes, and no.

  10. he was hanged on a tree see the KJV Acts 5:30 and Acts 10:39

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