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Is the Shroud of Turin the burial cloth of Jesus?

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Is the Shroud of Turin the burial cloth of Jesus

The Shroud of Turin has been the center of controversy since 1898. We will discuss its history soon, but let’s first state the obvious. Those who believe it is authentically the burial shroud of Jesus Christ are unlikely to be dissuaded. Conversely, those who think it’s a fake will almost certainly maintain their skepticism despite evidence or faith.

Before we get into research regarding the shroud, it’s important to have the right mindset. Science cannot prove or disprove the divinity of Jesus Christ. Our Father has put all of the evidence we need in our hearts, through His teachings in the Bible, and within the clear cross-referencing of prophecies that have come true. If you are searching for truth, the Shroud of Turin can do little to persuade you in one direction or the other at this time because the individual can either have faith in the teachings of our Lord or the individual can adopt a worldview that excludes the Messiah. All the shroud can currently do is reinforce one’s faith or create a mystery in the secular mind.

Let’s explore some commentary about the shroud to see where it stands in today’s fight for the faith.

Clearing the biggest obstacle of authenticity

There is a way that many doubts could be taken away about the authenticity of the shroud. While it would not demonstrate clear proof that He is the Messiah who was resurrected as the first fruits, it could come very close to proving that the man who died on the cross in Jerusalem was wrapped in the shroud. The blood from the Sudarium of Oviedo can be compared to the blood on the shroud. This artifact is most likely the head covering that was used when Yeshua’s body was transported to the tomb and left there. Jewish tradition says that blood is part of the body and must be buried with it. Since the cloth had Yeshua’s blood, it would have been kept in the tomb.

6 Then cometh Simon Peter following him, and went into the sepulchre, and seeth the linen clothes lie,
7 And the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but wrapped together in a place by itself.

– John 20:6-7 (KJV)

Since the cloth has been tracked historically since the 7th century, it would be a clear debunking of the 1988 carbon-14 dating tests that The Telegraph and USA Today reported as being potentially reversed. Studies comparing the blood stain positioning between the two artifacts show the likelihood that they wrapped the same head. If the blood on the sudarium, which has been confirmed to be at least as old as the 7th century, is the same blood that’s on the shroud, it would leave no doubt that the carbon-14 dating placing the shroud between 1260-1390 AD is inaccurate.

One might ask why it’s so important to debunk the debunking. If, as I stated, the shroud is not a path to faith, why would we want it to be authenticated in the minds of the masses? To understand this, one must understand the tools and characteristics of the enemy. Today, so many people have used science as a reason to deny their faith and decry the teachings of the Bible. It is written on our hearts, solidified in our minds, and authenticated by the wonders of the world that we are created beings and that God is our Creator. Secular science has at its core the desire to explain the universe in terms that separate the creation from its Creator.

The shroud can be a powerful gateway into inquiry. Its presence, while proof of nothing, has a compelling story that could open up the minds of those seeking the truth to explore the Word and learn of God and Yeshua. The adversary does not need to disprove God. He simply needs to nurture the seeds of doubt that prevent us from exploring more deeply. This is why the carbon-14 dating results were tainted and its why an untold number of people have dismissed it as a fake. If the debunking of the shroud can itself be debunked, there’s an opportunity to plant a seed of curiosity in some people that can grow to a deeper exploration of the truth.

The only feasible explanation

To those who view the shroud as authentic, it’s a very clear indication of the resurrection. A deep dive into the scientific research and the faith that makes many believe it to be real tells an incredible story of mysteries that point to one feasible conclusion.

Scientists have spent a great deal of time trying to determine how it was created. One of the researchers, Barrie Schwortz, claims that their team spent hundreds of thousands of man hours with the goal of determining the way that the shroud was produced. He was skeptical at first, feeling that the mystery would be simple to solve once they applied modern science to it.

“Our team spent hundreds of thousand of hours and after that period of time, remembering that our primary goal was to determine how the image was formed, came back with nothing,” said Schwortz. “We could not answer that question, so in essence we can tell you what it’s not. We cannot tell you what it is.”

It is only when one goes in with the assumption that the Shroud of Turin is likely the cloth covering of the body of Yeshua after His crucifixion can they see the evidence as clearly pointing in that direction. To me, it’s compelling. To others, it’s simply beyond science’s ability to discern at this moment. The videos below go into greater detail about the evidence, but here’s a quick recap of some of the things that demonstrate its potential authenticity:

  • Rare Damascus Gate Dirt Found on Shroud: In 1978, a sample of dirt taken from the foot region of the shroud was examined at the Hercules Aerospace Laboratory in Salt Lake City, Utah. The calcite in the dirt is rare, though it is in abundance around the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem. This does nothing to prove authenticity but does point to the detail that would have had been put into its creation if it were a fake since there would be no reason in medieval times to believe that future generations would be able to tell the difference in dirt types from different regions.
  • Photo-Negative Nature of the Image: The controversy behind the shroud started in 1898 when amateur Italian photographer Secondo Pia photographed it. While processing the film, he was shocked to see that the negative established a much clearer image of a face than the positive itself. This means that whatever created the image did so in a way that was extremely improbable when producing a hoax but makes perfect sense from an authentic perspective, something we’ll talk about below.
  • AB Blood and Bilirubin: If we stay true to the scientific study, then we can draw a couple of conclusions. First, it’s definitely blood on the shroud as well as on the sudarium. Even skeptical scientists admit that ancient blood is present in the right areas. The presence of bilirubin makes it very likely that severe bruising and lacerations were present on the body when it was covered. These facts alone mean that it must be either an extremely elaborate hoax or a real burial cloth of a harshly scourged man.  Second, a close look at the debunking of the presence of blood demonstrates the uncanny depth to which the adversary will go to delude people. One, for example, says that a particular plant could be used to create a paint that mimics the characteristics of blood. That’s a pretty amazing coincidence if it was created in medieval times to fool the ages – they were very lucky to have selected the exact right flower that could stand up to 21st century microbiological scrutiny.
  • The Blood Goes Through the Shroud while the Image does Not: As they discovered when shining a light through the cloth and cataloging the other side, the blood stains go all the way through while the image on the front side does not. In fact, the image itself is only on the microscopic surface of the shroud, two microfibers deep. It’s either real or the artist was trying for an epic level of hyper-realism. Skeptics have suggested that, in order to produce a viable fake that could stand up to scrutiny, that they used real human blood to produce the effect. This is absurd, of course, because the blood soaks through in a way that shows it was truly lain over a body and not manually placed on a piece of linen for effect.
  • The Image Has Depth: This is one of the toughest pieces of evidence to explain. One of the videos below does a pretty good job at it, but here’s the quick layman’s version. Paintings and pictures do not have appropriate depth that can be measured with modern equipment such as the VP8 Image Analyzer. They become distorted. When the shroud was analyzed in this manner, it created a 3D image that corresponded with the face of a man as if the shroud image was created while draped over a man.
  • Pollen and Flowers: 58 pollen types are on the shroud and nearly half of them can only be found in the Middle East. One in particular pollen from a plant called gundelia tournefortii, is found in abundance near the head region of the shroud. It is a very thorny plant that could have been used as the crown of thorns. Many flower images can be found on the shroud, including Zygophyllum dumosum. This is an important discovery because it is only found in one place – near Jerusalem.

There are plenty of other points that could be covered, but perhaps the most compelling is the form of the image itself. It shows a man with wounds that match what would have been seen from a scourging with a Roman flagrum. There is a also wound on the wrist where a crucified man would have been held to the cross. There are blood spots that surround the head in a way that would have come from wounds caused by a crown of thorns. Lastly, there is an area near the 5th rib where a lot of blood gathered that matches what a spear wound would have yielded.

This last piece of evidence demonstrates that this is definitely not another crucified man. The similarities to the story of Yeshua’s crucifixion are too perfect.

Authentic or not, it points to one conclusion

There are only two ways that the Shroud of Turin could have been formed.

It’s Real

If you believe the shroud is authentic, then you will probably believe that Joseph of Arimathea purchased a linen cloth to use as the burial shroud for the crucified Yeshua. At the time of resurrection, our best guess from a scientific perspective is that the body dematerialized and the burst of energy that resulted created the image on the shroud. This is backed up by the fact that the image is present, though lighter, at points where the shroud is not touching the body.

The pristine nature of the blood wounds indicates the shroud was not removed. For them to appear as they do, the points on the body where blood is touching the cloth would need to suddenly disappear or there would have been clear smudging.

Light is the most popular theory for the creation of the image. Heat or other sorts of radiation are less likely, but light of some sort has been shown to work to produce the effect. In a recent study, scientists created similar results using UV laser pulses. Lastly, if the origin of the light was within the shroud (within the body, perhaps) then the effect could have produced the negative image.

Those who believe that the Shroud of Turin is the burial cloth of Yeshua can latch onto the scientific data that hypothesizes His resurrection as the moment that the image was imprinted onto the shroud.

It’s a Tool of Deception

With all that we now know, this cannot be an artist’s rendition. It is extremely unlikely that it could be another man who happened to be killed in the same manner. Does this mean that it must be authentic?

The evidence points to a supernatural origin, which means that if it is a fake, then it was created through forces and with knowledge that greatly exceeds science today, let alone in medieval times. This would mean that demonic forces have gone through a ton of trouble over the centuries to make it stand up against all scrutiny. The presence of the Catholic Church makes this a possibility as well. It’s not that the Catholic Church is universally bent towards evil – not by any means. However, the deceptions that have been promoted by evil through the Catholic Church could bring into question whether this is an artifact of reality or deception.

This is all possible, but there is one event that points away from this possibility. There are many reasons, some discussed above, that the carbon dating was flawed. One in particular points to a last minute decision regarding the area of the shroud where the carbon dating sample would be taken. Originally, samples from different sections were supposed to be used, but the decision was made under guidance of the Catholic Church to pull from a single location. That location has been shown to be a place where the shroud was repaired, meaning that the cloth was an interwoven area mixing the original shroud cloth with newer cloth.

I do not believe that the shroud is a tool of deception, but the possibility is there so it must be stated.

Either Way…

It doesn’t really matter which is true. We know that in either scenario, the shroud was clearly created through means that could not exist in a world that does not have heavenly forces of good or demonic forces of evil. Human hands could not have created the shroud, not today and definitely not 700 years ago.

The Shroud of Turin is an interesting study of the resurrection. Today, it is a small piece of the bigger puzzle. In the future, it may come into play more prevalently in the fight between good and evil.

Here are three videos that we recommend for further research on the subject:

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Culture and Religion

The false narratives behind Portland’s Antifa versus Proud Boys

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The false narratives behind Portlands Antifa versus Proud Boys

Depending on which news outlets you use, there are two primary narratives that are being pushed. Narrative one is, “Far-right group and Antifa clash in Portland.” Narrative two is, “Antifa gets violent. Again.”

The first narrative is what you’ll get from progressive legacy media outlets as they offer cover for the violence being perpetrated almost exclusively by Antifa as they clash with the Proud Boys. The latter is being classified as a “far-right” group, but they’re actually more of an “alt-right” group that does not believe in true conservative principles. Nevertheless, anything “right” is painted by the media as part of the conservative movement, the GOP, and President Trump’s base. This is important to understand because in the narrative the left is painting, their goal is to make the Proud Boys appear to be white supremacist and therefore attached to President Trump because according to their latest agenda, they have to portray him as a racist at every turn.

The second narrative is the reality, and you won’t find it reported this way by many news outlets, even on the right. There’s a disassociation some publications are actively engaged in where they believe reporting that seems to favor the Proud Boys makes the news outlet seem like it’s supporting white supremacy. This is the progressive propaganda machine at work; even conservative journalists are hesitant to lose credibility over perceptions.

Quillette journalist Angy Ngo is reporting live on Twitter. We’ll try to update it as he adds more:

As you can see from Ngo’s reporting, the violence seems to be undertaken exclusively by Antifa. But legacy media will only report it as clashes “between” the two groups and not as violence instigated solely by the side that holds the left’s progressive mantle. All of this is secondary to the overarching narrative they’re driving, that the Proud Boys represent the right and their white supremacy beliefs are defended by the President.

On cue, the President chimed in:

The left pounced, as they’re wont to do, by saying this is evidence the President is sympathetic to the Proud Boys because he singled out Antifa in a “mutual” conflict. What they won’t tell you is Antifa is starting the fights. They’re bringing the weapons. They’re pepper-spraying people. They’re attacking buses. One does not have to believe in the Proud Boys’ rhetoric to realize Antifa is instigating violence here.

As Beth Baumann reported, even journalists are being targeted:

So Much For Being ‘Peaceful’: Antifa Attacks Reporters And Conservatives In Portland (Again)

Not quite seven weeks ago, conservative journalist Andy Ngo was attacked while covering an Antifa protest in Portland, Oregon. Mayor Tom Wheeler ordered police to stand down at the time and received backlash for doing so. The city prepared for the Proud Boys to hold a rally on Saturday, with Antifa showing up to counter protest. Wheeler made it clear that Portland is taking a “zero tolerance” policy during Saturday’s activities.

Despite the warning, Antifa, once again, became violent.

At one point, Antifa protestors had The Washington Examiner‘s Julio Rosas surrounded. They wanted him to report on what was taking place from the other side of the street because he “wasn’t with” them.

Rosas attempted to explain that he was simply reporting on the events for his job but Antifa didn’t care. They thought he was “spying” on them.

The irony in all of this has become a recurring theme between Antifa and their supporters in progressive media and the Democratic Party. They claim Antifa is simply “anti-fascist” while ignoring the fact that they’re the ones using fascism to promote their ideas and to quash opposing ideas. Reports on the ground in Portland demonstrate this clearly.

Here are Rosas’s Twitter reports:

The left’s narratives: (1) Proud Boys and Antifa are equally to blame, (2) Proud Boys are white supremacists while Antifa are anti-fascists, and (3) President Trump support white supremacists. Don’t believe the lies.

We are currently forming the American Conservative Movement. If you are interested in learning more, we will be sending out information in a few weeks.

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Culture and Religion

Romans 3:23 – all have sinned

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Romans 323 for all have sinned

For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; – Romans 3:23

Our Father wants obedient children but we have proven time and time again since the beginning of our existence that we are not obedient. Rather than let us destroy any chance of salvation, He gave us a final hope: Jesus Christ, our Lord, our Messiah, our Savior.

We are currently forming the American Conservative Movement. If you are interested in learning more, we will be sending out information in a few weeks.

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Conspiracy Theory

Alleged Philadelphia shooter Maurice Hill attended radical Wahhabi Islam mosque: report

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Alleged Philadelphia shooter Maurice Hill attended radical Wahhabi Islam mosque report

Wahhabism, the anti-American fundamentalist Islamic sect that drives the religious culture in Saudi Arabia, has as one of its stated goals to spread their beliefs around the world through any means necessary. Mosques promoting their radical ideology have been popping up across America over the last few years, including in Philadelphia. Alleged cop-shooter Maurice Hill attended one of them.

According to Clarion Project:

The mosque, called Masjid Ahlil Hadith Wal Athar, is known for preaching the Islamist ideology promoted by Saudi Arabia referred to as “Wahhabism.”

Clarion Intelligence Network has been aware through its sources that the area where the shootings took place is known for trafficking in guns, drugs and counterfeit items. This criminal market has a strong Islamist element that includes extremist gangs.

Hill’s older sister said he “occasionally attended” an unnamed mosque, confirming initial reports from our sources that Hill is a Muslim. The sources do not yet have first-hand evidence of the shooter being personally involved in Islamist extremism.

Clarion Intel’s sources report that Masjid Ahlil Hadith Wal Athar is a Salafi mosque which follows the theocratic teachings of Saudi Arabia’s top Wahhabist scholars.

At this point, there is no indication that Hill’s shooting of police officers was motivated by Islamism or anything other than a desire to resist arrest.

Today, a march was scheduled to “Free Maurice Hill” by Black Community Control of Police, a group adamantly opposed to law enforcement. There are no indications the group is aligned with Masjid Ahlil Hadeeth Wal Athar, but it is a common practice among radical Islamic groups to disguise their associations and operate apparently independent from one another.

The details surrounding the gunfight seem to indicate it was not prompted by Wahhabism as Hill was apparently approached as a result of a separate warrant enforced against a neighbor. But the clear disregard for police authority and the willingness to attempt to murder multiple law enforcement officers indicates an ideology that is prepared to kill and die. Was this ideology sparked at the radical mosque Hill attended?

As expected, the appetite of legacy media to cover Maurice Hill died down quickly despite the rampant calls for gun control. His story has too many things that go against the progressive media’s narrative.

Any connections to Islam in situations like these are automatically dismissed as Islamophobia. But it’s highly unlikely Maurice Hill’s alleged actions were completely disparate from the radical teachings of the mosque he attended.

We are currently forming the American Conservative Movement. If you are interested in learning more, we will be sending out information in a few weeks.

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