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Leonardo Da Vinci and the Shroud of Turin

QUESTION: Leonardo Da Vinci and the Shroud of Turin - Did Da Vinci produce the image?


Leonardo Da Vinci is one of the most celebrated artists of the 14th century. His workmanship of "The Last Supper" is known as one of the most extraordinary paintings of his time, and many people from the 21st century display this notable work of art in their homes. There is now much controversy that he is the painter or photographer of the man called "Jesus" on the Shroud of Turin, thereby claiming this shroud is a hoax. It is said that Mr. Da Vinci used his own image for the shroud. Let us look at this and decide for ourselves if the work of Leonardo Da Vinci and the Shroud of Turin are one in the same.

First of all, the image could NOT have been painted. There are no pigments and no brush strokes to be found. If it had been painted, there would be an outline on the image, and there is none. Also, a fire damaged the Shroud in 1532 so the flames would have made the paint crack if the image had been painted. There is no sign of any cracked paint.

A scientific discovery also proves the image was not painted. Let us look at how the cloth was placed around the man on the cloth. The cloth was placed on flat stone, and the body was placed on top of it with the other half brought over the head and down to the feet. It was then tucked around the body using bags of spices. The image is made up of many diffused smudges. Upon looking at the smudges, there is revealed, a body. The image can only be seen on one side, while the backside shows no image even when light is shown through the Shroud. The only marks shown are blood marks, which soaked through the cloth. When the first photographs were taken of the Shroud, it was found that the negative image showed positive coloration, and additionally, there was enough detail to show small to one inch lash marks. This kind of detail is invisible to the naked eye so the fact of this negative image alone is enough evidence to prove that the shroud is not a painted forgery.

Also, Leonardo Da Vinci would have had to ask for permission from the Savoy family in Chambery, England to release the shroud to him in or around 1492. Then, in one single attempt, he would have had to produce his own photographic image without making a mistake. The Savoy family paid 50 gold franks to claim their ownership of the Shroud and were busy at that time renovating the Church of Chambery for the purpose of housing the Shroud, so it would be difficult to imagine they would relinquish the Shroud to an artist living in Milan, Italy to tamper with their prized possession.

Another detail regarding Leonardo Da Vinci and the Shroud of Turin is that he was born in 1452, which is 100 years after what is supposedly the time the Shroud originated. There is also no evidence that any other photographic negative from that time in history was ever produced. As studies on the Shroud continue, there is evidence of much plant life as well as accurate detail of bodily injuries, pollen and dirt from Palestine which primitive photography or painting could not have produced.

So, we continue to ask ourselves, "Where did the man on the cloth come from?"

The most popular theory is the "scorch" or "thermonuclear radiation" theory. Advocates of this idea suggest that the intense light and heat generated by Christ's body at the moment of resurrection might have burned his image into the cloth, much as "permanent shadows" of men in Hiroshima were burned into walls and other surfaces by the atomic explosion in 1945.

The Apostle Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 15:35-38 -"But someone may ask, 'How are the dead raised? With what kind of body will they come?' How foolish! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies. When you sow you do not plant the body that will be, but just a seed, perhaps of wheat or of something else. But God gives it a body as he has determined, and to each kind of seed he gives its own body."

This article is also available in Spanish.

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What do you think?
We have all sinned and deserve God’s judgment. God, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him. Jesus, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He died for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was buried, and rose from the dead according to the Bible. If you truly believe and trust this in your heart, receiving Jesus alone as your Savior, declaring, "Jesus is Lord," you will be saved from judgment and spend eternity with God in heaven.

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