V RaptureChrist Newsletter
April 1, 2016

Cause of Christ's Death

The evidence from the bible points out that the cause of Jesus' death was heart failure due to Cardiac Tamponade.

Jesus had been whipped severely before He was asked to carry His cross. He had lost a lot of blood and had received severe injuries to His chest. Simon of Cyrene was told by the Roman soldiers to carry Jesus' cross after Christ fell three times in trying to accomplish this feat. Lack of strength to carry the cross is evident; Jesus at the time was suffering hypovolemic shock.

The fast heartbeat resulting from hypovolemic shock will cause fluid to gather in the pericardial sac surrounding the heart. This is known as pericardial effusion. A dehydrated person with pericardial effusion would go into cardiac tamponade if left untreated. The apostle John was a witness to this event. 

John 19:34
Instead, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus' side with a spear, bringing a sudden flow of blood and water.

Pericardial tamponade occurs when someone receives injuries to the chest and loses a lot of blood. As fluid accumulates in the pericardium, it is very difficult for blood to enter into the heart. The fluid-filled pericardium acts as a straight-jacket making it impossible for the heart to normally dilate and be filled with blood. After 6 hours of pericardial effusion leading to cardiac tamponade, Jesus' heart stopped beating, He stopped breathing, and after a Roman soldier thrust him in the side with a spear, He was pronounced dead.

Luke 23:46
Then Jesus shouted, "Father, I entrust my spirit into your hands!" And with those words he breathed his last.

Mark 15:43-45
Joseph of Arimathea, a prominent member of the Council, who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God, went boldly to Pilate and asked for Jesusí body. Pilate was surprised to hear that he was already dead. Summoning the centurion, he asked him if Jesus had already died. When he learned from the centurion that it was so, he gave the body to Joseph.

Christ was dead and came back like in a coma. He could not be dead too long, because the bible states that His body did NOT see corruption. His death was similar to a person who suffers a heart attack and is dead, but is brought back to life again; or to a person who drowns but it resuscitated by medical intervention.

The organs in our body cannot live without oxygen. The brain is the most sensitive of our organs. It usually cannot go without oxygen for more than six minutes without irreparable brain damage.

From two to three hours after death, rigor mortis starts to set in, the body starts to get stiff, as chemical reactions inside the dying cells start to proceed. This is progressive; twelve hours from death, the body cannot be flexed.

This was not the case in Jesus' body. He came back to life from the dead without experiencing rigor mortis.

He gave up His life and took it back again,

John 10:18
No one can take my life from me. I sacrifice it voluntarily. For I have the authority to lay it down when I want to and also to take it up again. For this is what my Father has commanded."

Christ Did Not See Corruption

God tells us that Christ would not see corruption.

Psalm 16:10
For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay. 

Certainly, we need to understand what this means. The Greek word used in the bible for corruption is διαφθοράν "dee-af-thor-Šn", which means physical decay, such as the rotting of a corpse. This does not refer to a spiritual decay, but bodily decay.

We know that Jesus was inside the tomb for 3 days and 3 nights, but that does NOT mean He was dead for 3 days and 3 nights; if that were the case, His body would have rotted out.

Inside that tomb, the angels gave Jesus the necessary care to bring Him back to life from the death He had experienced. 

How do we know that?

Angels helped Jesus after He fasted for 40 days.

Matthew 4:11
Then the devil went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus.

We could compare the tomb to the intensive care unit (ICU) of a hospital., and the angels to the medical staff in that ICU.

The tomb was aseptic due to several reasons:

1. Was made out of rock -- the walls, the floor, and the bed in which they laid the dead body of Jesus.
2. It was a cave, not a tomb. No dead bodies had ever been placed in that tomb before --therefore no germs. The owner, Joseph of Arimathea, had to carve the cave into a tomb and prepare a stone with a groove on the floor to roll the stone back and forth in front of the entrance.
3. Jesus' body was cleaned with water and bandaged with clean strips of cloth and ointments as it is usual in Jewish burials of that period.
3. Nobody else came into the tomb during those 3 days and nights, only the angels (who carried no germs.)

There was oxygen in the tomb, as the tomb had a window.

Obviously, Jesus body had to be given fluids, His heart wounds repaired, His heart and lungs restarted (similar to what they would do to a dead person in a hospital.) These steps had to start immediately after Jesus was inside that tomb. If that did not happen, Jesus brain would start to rot!

Nowadays, medical science has been able to bring back to life people whose hearts have failed and have been diagnosed as dead. Some have been dead for several minutes, others have been brought back to life after longer periods of time. People who fell in cold water have come back to life after several hours.

One of the things that helps the organs from suffering decay is cold. The chemical reactions that would start to occur when the body is deprived of oxygen will slow down in the presence of cold. That is why meat does not decay in a freezer -- it would keep for months. 

Jesus was exposed naked at a temperature close to the 40's while He was hanging on the cross for 6 hours before His death. This would lower His core temperature by as much as 20 degrees. As His burial occurred during the night, there would be cool temperatures while His body was being prepared for burial.

The fact that Jesus, after a week from His death, was still showing the wounds in His hands and body demonstrates that God intervened to help Jesus recover from His trauma and death. This was not anything that would defy the laws of nature. God did nothing of the kind. The day after He was risen, Jesus still was unrecognizable to people who knew Him -- side effects of the trauma; His wounds were still in the process of healing; His healing was at the same rate as it is usual for anybody -- 7 days later he still showed them to doubting Thomas.


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