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Proof from the Ante-Nicean Fathers that
Jesus Survived the Crucifixion

They are Irenaeus (c.180 AD), and Eusebius (326 AD) who quotes from Papias of Hierapolis (c.60-135).
Since these are the preeminent Fathers of the Early Church, their words are hard to ignore.

Irenaeus: "Against Heresies" (c. 180 AD) (link to pdf)

(The Ante-Nicene Fathers. translations of the writings of the fathers down to A.D. 325 Vol 1 edited by Roberts and Donaldson)

Irenaeus was Bishop of Lugdunum in Gaul (Lyon, France). He was an early Church Father and apologist, and his writings were formative in the early development of Christian theology. Irenaeus is recognized as a saint in both Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy. His most famous of his writings is 'Against Heresies', which was aimed against the Gnostics. He considered himself to be superior to them because as a student of Polycarp, who was in touch with John the Evangelist (son of John, the brother of James therefore John II), he had a direct connection with Jesus. He is one of the preeminent early Christian Fathers, venerated in the following Churches: Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox Church, Anglican Communion, Assyrian Church of the East, Lutheran Church, and Oriental Orthodox Church.


4. Jesus, being thirty years old ("Now Jesus was, as it were, beginning to be thirty years old" - Luke 3:23) when He came to be baptized (by John the Baptist ) , and then possessing the full age of a Master, He came to Jerusalem, so that He might be properly acknowledged by all as a Master ...

For He came to save all through means of Himself - all, I say, who through Him are born again to God - infants, and children, and boys, and youths, and old men. He therefore passed through every age,

  • becoming an infant for infants, thus sanctifying infants;
  • a child for children, thus sanctifying those who are of this age, being at the same time made to them an example of piety, righteousness, and submission;
  • a youth for youths, becoming an example to youths, and thus sanctifying them for the Lord.
  • So likewise He was an old man for old men, that He might be a perfect Master for all, not merely as respects the setting forth of the truth, but also as regards age, sanctifying at the same time the aged also, and becoming an example to them likewise.
  • Then, at last. He came on to death itself, that He might be "the first-born from the dead, that in all things He might have the pre-eminence" (Colossians 1:18) "the Prince of life" (Acts 3:15), existing before all, and going before all.

5 . They, however, that may establish their false opinion regarding that which is written, "to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord", maintain that He preached for one year only, and then suffered in the twelfth month (so say the Synoptics: Mathew, Mark & Luke or John: 3 years as Ireneaus advocates). In speaking thus, they are forgetful to their own disadvantage, destroying His whole work, and robbing Him of that age which is both more necessary and more honorable than any other; that more advanced age, I mean, during which also as a teacher He excelled all others. For how could He have had disciples, if He did not teach? ...

On completing His thirtieth year (or thirty-third), He suffered, being in fact still a young man, and who had by no means attained to advanced age.
Now, that the first stage of early life embraces thirty years, and that this extends onwards to the fortieth year, everyone will admit;
but from the fortieth and fiftieth year a man begins to decline towards old age, which our Lord possessed while He still fulfilled the office of a Teacher,
as the Gospel and all the elders testify. Those elders who were conversant in Asia with John, the disciple of the Lord, affirming that John conveyed to them that information. And he remained among them up to the times of Trajan. (98AD)

Some of them, moreover, saw not only John, but the other apostles also, and heard the very same account from them, and bear testimony as to the validity of the statement. Whom then should we rather believe ? Whether such men as these, or Ptolemaeus, who never saw the apostles, and who never even in his dreams attained to the slightest trace of an apostle?

(John would be too old and therefore this John is more likely to be John's son: the son of Aquila and Priscilla - See Aquila in the Clementines and John II in Revelation 18:01.).

6. But, besides this, those very Jews who then disputed with the Lord Jesus Christ have most clearly indicated the same thing. For when the Lord said to them, "Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day; and he saw it, and was glad," they answered Him, "Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast Thou seen Abraham?" (John 8 56,57)

Now, such language is fittingly applied to one who has already passed the age of forty, without having as yet reached his fiftieth year, yet is not far from this latter period. But to one who is only thirty years old it would unquestionably be said, "Thou art not yet forty years old."

For those who wished to convict Him of falsehood would certainly not extend the number of His years far beyond the age which they saw He had attained; but they mentioned a period near His real age, whether they had truly ascertained this out of the entry in the public register, or simply made a conjecture from what they observed that He was above forty years old, and that He certainly was not one of only thirty years of age.

For it is altogether unreasonable to suppose that they were mistaken by twenty years, when they wished to prove Him younger than the times of Abraham. For what they saw, that they also expressed; and He whom they beheld was not a mere phantasm, but an actual being of flesh and blood. He did not then want much of being fifty years old;

And, in accordance with that fact, they said to Him, "Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast Thou seen Abraham?" He did not therefore preach only for one year, nor did He suffer in the twelfth month of the year. For the period included between the thirtieth and the fiftieth year can never be regarded as one year, unless indeed, among their eons, there be so long years assigned to those who sit in their ranks with Bythus in the Pleroma; of which beings Homer the poet, too, has spoken, doubtless being inspired by the Mother of their system of error:
"The gods sat round, while Jove presided o'er, And converse held upon the golden floor." (Iliad 4:1)

Eusebius, Historia Ecclesiastica (Church History) quoting Papias

Eusebius (260/265AD – 339/340AD) succeeded Agapius as Bishop of Caesarea soon after 313AD. Being a learned man and famous author, and thus enjoying the favor of the Emperor Constantine, he played a prominent role at the Council of Nicaea in 325AD. When he wrote his Church History, he must of had the works of Papias before him, but they have since been lost.

Papias of Hierapolis (died c. 100AD) is described by Irenaeus (previously quoted above) as "an ancient man who was a hearer of John and a companion of Polycarp. Polycarp (69AD – 155AD) was a Christian bishop of Smyrna, one of the Seven Churches of Revelation in 48AD. With Clement of Rome (the first Pope) and Ignatius of Antioch, Polycarp is regarded as one of three chief Apostolic Fathers. His sole surviving work attributed to his authorship is his Letter to the Philippians (first recorded by Irenaeus). Polycarp must have had strong connections with Papias at Hierapolis which is where the Apostle Philip lived and whose bones are said to be buried there. Philip is also connected with Mary Magdalene (virgin daughter at level 4) when Paul stops at Caesarea at Philip's Church . Mary Magdalene in her later years after her divorce of Jesus must have lived in Hierapolis and died there. In fact Mary Magdalene is is most likely the teller of the story, having been present at the Crucifixion and "Resurrection".

Eusebius, Fragments Of Papias, Church History XXXIX 8-10)
Eusebius records the fragmented words of Papias that tell of wonderful events that have come down to him by tradition. Papias was a contemporary of Philip the Apostle who resided in Hierapolis with his daughters (Acts 21:08). He relates a marvellous tale from the daughters of Philip:
"that in his time a man rose from the dead1, and again how Justus2 who was surnamed Barsabbas3 drank a deadly poison, and yet, by the grace of the Lord, suffered no serious harm."

(1) This is obviously Lazarus (shown to be Simon Magus)
(2) This is Jesus, although Eusebius has mistaken him for James the Just in the next phrase from Papias: "And they put forward two, Joseph, called Barsabbas, who was surnamed Justus, and Mathias." (James the Just was stoned in 62AD.) Justus means crown prince used by James, younger brother of Jesus, and latter by Jesus' son: Jesus Justus, the true crown prince (Colossians 4:11).
(3) The prefix 'Bar' in Barsabbas means "son of", thus "son of Sabbas." It is used in Acts 1:23 for James (Joseph Barsabas), in Acts 4:36 Joses (called by the corrupted Bar-nabas) and in Acts 15:22 for Judas (Judas called Barsabas) with Silas (Simon). (Brothers of Jesus: Mark 06:03 'Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, and brother of James, and Joses, and Judas, and Simon?'). Also in Mark 15:7 for Jesus' uncle Barabbas (corrupted Bar-abbas) thus it applies to Jesus being the son of Joseph Sabbas and Mary.
In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus is being given a choice: to take the poison and to avoid Crucifixion or to take it later at the ninth hour as planned

"they gave him to drink vinegar mixed with gall" (Matt 27:34)
(here is revealed the poison --Strong's Lexicon 5521 χολή - gall" or bile, i.e. (by analogy) poison or an anodyne (wormwood, poppy, etc., being feminine suggesting the greenish hue. In all the other references, it is merely called vinegar with the added gall implied.)
"and having tasted, he would not drink."
(Jesus was now being given a choice: to take the poison now and to avoid crucifixion or to take it later at the ninth hour as planned and attempt the rescue plan to again save Simon Magus --his friend -- father-in-law--step-father of Mary Magdalene --Lazarus. In the Garden of Gethsemane, he had struggled with the possibility of being placed on the cross, in spite of his innocence, to replace the aging Thaddeus-Theudas-Barabbas, who was guilty. Having accepted the plan of taking the cup of poison, it was now growing clearer and clearer that every event was being fulfilled in each verse in Psalms 22:1-31 that would point to him as the prophesied Messiah. He thought about it ("tasted it"), but decided to proceed with the plan.)

In the Gospel of Mark, Jesus is being given a choice: to take the poison and to avoid Crucifixion or to take it later at the ninth hour as planned
"And they were giving him to drink wine mingled with myrrh, and he did not receive." (Mark 15:23)
(Peter who was not present at the crucifixion has assumed that Jesus was given myrrh, but this is what was used later by Nicodemus. The "wine" is really spoiled wine: vinegar, later, Mark has the correct vinegar, but missing the gall.)

In the four Gospels, Jesus gives the signal and He is given the poison

"And immediately, one of them having run, and having taken a sponge, having filled it with vinegar and having put it on a reed, was giving him to drink, but the rest said, 'Let alone, let us see if Elijah'
(Jonathan Annas as the leader of John the Baptist's 30 representatives -- See Elijah-Dositheus)
'does come -- about to save him' And Jesus having again cried with a great voice, yielded the spirit; (Matt 27:48-50)

"And one having run, and having filled a sponge with vinegar, having put it also on a reed, was giving him to drink, saying, 'Let alone, let us see if Elijah does come to take him down.' And Jesus having uttered a loud cry, yielded the spirit," (Mark 15:36,37)
(The signal having been given, it is most likely Merari-Ananus the Younger who runs up and with a sponge on a stick which he dips it into the poison and places it in Jesus' mouth. The poison takes effect immediately.)

"[And mocking him also were ] the soldiers, coming near and offering vinegar to him, (Luke 23:36b)
(This is from the group mocking section, but it does confirm the giving of vinegar also in Luke.)

"and these things having said, he breathed forth the spirit. ( Luke 23:46b)

"A vessel, therefore, was placed full of vinegar, and they having filled a sponge with vinegar, and having put [it] around a hyssop stalk, did put [it] to his mouth;"
(It is significant that the the vessel is emphasized in detail up front in the verse as this shows the importance of the mixture of "vinegar and poison".)
"when, therefore, Jesus received the vinegar,
he said, 'It has been finished;'"

(This parallels the last line of Psalms 22:31: "he has wrought it.")
"and having bowed the head, gave up the spirit." (John 19:29,30)
(The poison's effect is to make Jesus appear to be dead.)

In the Gospel of Peter, Jesus gives the signal and He is given the poison

"And one of them said, Give him to drink gall with vinegar. And they mixed and gave him to drink, and fulfilled all things, and accomplished their sins against their own head. And when he had said it he was taken up." (GP 16,17,19b)
(Confirming that poison (gall) was given and that he was taken off the cross.)

Other proofs that Jesus survived the Crucifixion and that his Resurrection was a lie

Crucifixion of Jesus: Jesus is pierced with a lancet as test for death; that Jesus is alive is kept secret
John 19:34 but one of the soldiers with a spear (lancet) did pierce his side, and immediately there came forth blood and water;
John 19:35 and he who has seen has testified, and his testimony is true, and that one has known that true things he speaks, that you also may believe.
Wikipedia: Clinical death: "Prior to the invention of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), defibrillation, epinephrine injection, and other treatments in the 20th century, the absence of blood circulation (and vital functions related to blood circulation) was historically considered the official definition of death.
After Jesus is taken down from the cross Nicodemus arrived with myrrh and aloes
John 19:39 And Nicodemus also came -- who came unto Jesus by night at the first -- bearing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, as it were, a hundred pounds.
The hundred pounds is probably not of its weight, but rather it cost, their expense is indicated by the fact that myrrh and frankincense were given with gold to the baby Jesus. The combination of myrrh and frankincense are used in Chinese medicine for "traumatic injuries with pain, swelling, and redness due to qi stagnation and blood stasis". Theophrastus, the successor to Aristotle in his 'Enquiry of Plants IX.xx.2' states "Pepper is a fruit, ... both however are heating : wherefore these, as well as frankincense, are used as antidotes for poisoning by hemlock." Clearly whatever the medicines, the goal was to vomit the poison that was given on the cross and administer an antidote for it.
Resurrection: Mary Magdalene mistakes Jesus for James "the Gardener" John 20:11 And Mary was standing near the tomb, weeping ...
John 20:16 Jesus said to her, "Mary!"; having turned, she said to him, "Rabboni;" that is to say, "Teacher."
That Magdalene initially mistook Jesus for his brother James does not support the concept that it was his ghost or not yet formed into a spirit body. It was after all still dark. That Jesus tells her not to touch him makes sense as he was covered with blood and vomit. The more important reasons was the he did not want to contaminate his baby in her womb and, being spiritually impure, he needed for the Church Father to sprinkle holy water on him. All he is saying that he intends to go back to the monastery where he will remain under Jonathan Annas. In Essene terms he will be ascending from the material world.
Resurrection: Mary Magdalene visits the tomb and gets Peter and John Mark
GP 35 And in the night in which the Lord's day was drawing on, as the soldiers kept guard two by two in a watch, there was a great voice in the heaven;
GP 36 And they saw the heavens opened, and two men descend from thence with great light and approach the tomb.
GP 37 And that stone which was put at the door rolled of itself and made way in part ; and the tomb was opened, and both the young men entered in.
GP 38 When therefore those soldiers saw it, they awakened the centurion (Cornelius -Luke) and the elders, — for they too were hard by keeping guard ;
GP 39 And, as they (the soldiers) declared what things they had seen, again they see three men coming forth from the tomb, and two of them supporting one, and a cross following them.
GP 40 And of the two the head reached unto the heaven, but the head of him that was led by them overpassed the heavens.
GP 41 And they heard a voice from the heavens, saying. 'Hast thou preached to them that sleep?'
GP 42 And a response was heard from the cross, 'Yea.'
The Gospel of Peter shows two men going down to the cave and three men going forth. Mary Magdalene goes to the tomb and "she runs, therefore, and comes unto Simon Peter, and unto the other disciple whom Jesus was loving," (John 20:02). Thus it is Peter and John Mark who go down into the tomb and who then come down the hill with Jesus between them.
In Acts 1:20 Peter says, 'for it has been written in the book of Psalms: "Let his lodging-place become desolate, and let no one be dwelling in it," and "his oversight let another take." This verse is from Psalm 69:25.
It is more likely that he quoted all of Psalm 69 since it relates to Jesus as the Messiah (though imperfect) and especially verse Psalms 69:21 "They also gave me gall for my food, and for my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink." This verse shows the poison that had been given to Jesus on the cross in exactly the same way as in the Gospels. One can surmise that when Acts was canonized, it was decided not to emphasize the fact that Jesus was poisoned on the cross as it would detract from his Messianic stature.
Crucifixion story in Gnostic Codex VII of the Nag Hammadi library: The Second Treatise of the Great Seth says that Jesus (Seth) is not being crucified, but that Simon (the one who carried the cross) is in his place:
"For my death, which they think happened, (happened) to them in their error and blindness, since they nailed their man unto their death... It was another, their father, who drank the gall and the vinegar; it was not I. They struck me with the reed; it was another, Simon, who bore the cross on his shoulder. I[t] was another upon Whom they placed the crown of thorns... And I was laughing at their ignorance."
Though ignores as just a Gnostic story, there is an uncanny similarity to Simon of Cyrene who is implied to have carried Jesus' cross when in fact this is Jesus' superior Simon Magus who, being crucified with Jesus was carrying his own cross. So, although Jesus was on the cross, he was And I was laughing at their ignorance." because he did survive.
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