The scourging made crucifixion more terrible.

I have never heard this pointed out, so I thought I would point it out myself. The scourging made the cruficixion itself more terrible.

While Christ’s physical suffering was nothing compared to his infinite suffering as he wrought the atonement, the physical suffering of the crucifixion was likely significantly worse due to the scourging. We see scouring portrayed in church films as a few stripes that look red in order to play down the gruesome realities for children. But imagine what 39 strokes of a multithonged whip with cutting bits woven into the strands would really do to a man’s back. It would have flayed a great deal of the flesh off of the Savior’s back. It is hard to imagine the pain as multiple layers of flesh were stripped away. It was with that back that he attempted to carry his cross. It was the flayed flesh of that back that would have been hanging firmly against the cross during the crucifixion unless he placed his weight on his pierced hands and feet. The least motion would have moved and scraped his back against the cross. While we do not consider the Savior’s physical suffering to be anything compared to the infinite suffering of his intercession, it was still unimaginably horrible and we still reverence him for his physical suffering and for the agony that it was. The way the scourging would have magnified the suffering of being crucified is part of the tally of pain he endured for our sake.


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John Robertson

I am nothing more than a regular member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

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