Here is a popular debate: was Jesus nailed through the palm or the wrist? Many believe it had to have been the wrist. I have heard it said that there is no Greek word for “Wrist” so one word means both “palm” and “wrist”. It’s also argued that nailing through the palm wouldn’t be strong enough to hold someone up on a cross, so it is likely that Jesus was nailed through the wrist and not the palm.
Can we put this 2000 year old argument to rest? Is there evidence to prove wrist or palm, one way, or the other? The Truth can always be found, if you are willing to search for it.
First, a quick word about Crucifixion. Although used as a form of execution, the main purpose of crucifixion was not death, but the infliction of pain. Crucifixion was a favourite among the Romans; they were sadists, true examples of barbarians. You can possess infinite knowledge and technology, but the way you behave is what deems you barbaric or civilized. Knowing that inflicting pain is the primary goal, it is perfectly reasonable that a man would be nailed to a cross through his palms, as this will cause maximum damage and pain. Ropes at the wrists do the job of binding the man to the cross, the nails in the palms rip and tear the flesh. This creates a kind of yoyo effect: the nails tear at your palms, but don’t rip straight through because you are tied with the ropes; when your hands start throbbing, you push up with your feet to relieve the pressure; when your feet start throbbing, you lower down again; the tearing and throbbing in your hands and feet (damage caused by the nails) never actually stops, so you do this up and down action as long as you can. And finally (sometimes days later) a guard will come and break your legs. (John 19:31-34) Now you will suffocate under the weight of your body, you can’t push up, you can’t take a breath.
That is the reason why you would crucify someone nailed through the palms. The purpose of the nails is not to hold the person to the cross, it is to torture. With the ropes doing the binding, there is no need to nail through the wrist. Are there crucifixions where the condemned are nailed through the wrist? Yes, there could be. But we are talking about Jesus. Let’s look at what the Bible says about Jesus’ crucifixion.
A Strong’s Concordance is a must have for any serious Truth Seeker. For those of you that don’t know what a Strong’s Concordance is, it is a book which lists every word in the Bible and gives you the meaning of the word in the language it was originally written. Old Testament words are in Hebrew or Chaldee; New Testament words are in Greek. Like a dictionary, look up a word in the Bible, you will see every place in the Bible the word is mentioned; find the Scripture you were reading (because there can be different contexts for the same word, ex: Palm (hand) or Palm (tree); and you will get a number; the number will take you to the Greek (N.Test) or the Hebrew (O.Test); then you find the number and here you will learn the original meaning of the word, and most often you will find other numbers which are also relevant to your search.
The following references are from my Strong’s Concordance:
Old Testament :
PALMS : Isaiah 49:16 – “See I have engraved you on the palms of my hands…”
S.C. Reference #3709=KAPH – from 3721; the hollow hand or palm; hollow, middle. #3721=KAPHAPH – a prim. root; to curve — bow down.
HANDS : Ezekiel 21:14 – “So then, son of man, prophesy and strike your hands together.”
S.C. Reference #3709=KAPH: refer to palms
PALMS: Matthew 26:67 – “…and others smote him with the palms of their hands.”
S.C. Reference #4474=RHAPIZO – from a derivative of a prime RHEPO; to slap, smite (with the palm of the hand) Compare #5180=TUPTO – repeated blows.
PALM: Mark 14:65 – “…and the servants did strike him with the palms of their hands.”
S.C. Reference #4475=RHAPISMA – from 4474; a slap – (strike with the) palm of the hand, smite with the hand.
HANDS: 1) John 20:25 – “…unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my fingers where the nails were…” 2) Luke 24:39 – “Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself!”
S.C. Reference #5495=CHEIR – (through the idea of hollowness for grasping); the hand.
There is much to be learned from the many Greek and Hebrew words which reference Palms and Hands, even more than what I’m writing here. But I think it is clear that the Greeks and the Hebrews have a word clearly defined as “PALM of the hand”. Just because there isn’t a specific word translated as “wrist”, doesn’t mean there isn’t a specific word meaning “palm”. The Strong’s Concordance leaves no doubts, this is not a book by someone writing down what they think words mean, these are the transliterations of words from one language to another.
Many people, even professed Christians, believe that settling this debate is not important; that it doesn’t matter whether Jesus was nailed through the palm or the wrist. I disagree. It is a very important point. Whatever is not the truth is a lie and every lie comes from the devil. When you know for a fact that Jesus was nailed through the palm and not the wrist, you won’t be deceived by things like the Shroud of Turin. It is possible that it is the burial cloth of someone, but there is enough evidence to prove that it is NOT the burial cloth of Jesus. 1) We know Jesus was nailed through the palms; the Shroud shows nail marks at the wrists, and the palms are intact. 2) The Shroud is all one piece from head to toe; John 20:6 – “Then Simon Peter arrived and went into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the burial cloth that had been around Jesus’ head. The cloth was folded up by itself, separate from the linen.” Why is the Bible so specific, explaining that a separate cloth was used to wrap Jesus’ head, unless this was important to know? God said He would protect us from the evil one, the devil, the father of lies. Do not be deceived by things of this world. The Shroud of Turin is not the burial cloth of Jesus. But look at what it has become: a holy relic, a shrine, an idol; people crying, weeping, kissing it, worshipping it even. Do you think that is what God wants? God Himself said, “You shall have no other gods before (besides) me. You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God.” Exodus 20:3.
God did not leave us helpless and stupid. Search for the TRUTH in everything you do, the TRUTH will set you free! Don’t be afraid to ask questions, to do research, find things out for yourself. The majority is not always right, and what you perceive to be the majority is likely not the majority at all. The Bible is perfect, it is our guide. There is nothing that can’t be found in the Word of God. And there are no contradictions. Learn the language, there are two sides to wisdom.
Jesus, nailed through the palms, I have given more evidence which supports this, than others have to deny it. As a matter of fact, there is NO evidence to refute it.
Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.” Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!” Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.