Saturday, June 30, 2007

Introduction to my The Shroud of Turin (TSoT) blog!

My name is Stephen E. Jones. I am an Australian evangelical Christian in my early 60s. I have another blog CreationEvolutionDesign, where I have been posting a series, "Bogus Shroud of Turin?," defending

[Above (enlarge): The front body image on the Shroud of Turin, Fortean Picture Library (no longer online).]

the Shroud of Turin from the charge (by a Christian) that it is "bogus."

My interest in the Shroud of Turin began in January 2005 when, as I posted to my then Yahoo group, after reading Stevenson & Habermas' "Verdict on the Shroud" (1981), I accepted (then provisionally but now fully) that the Shroud of Turin is the actual burial sheet of Jesus Christ and therefore extrabiblical evidence of His death and resurrection. Before then I knew very little about the Shroud and, to the extent that I thought about it at all, I assumed it was just another medieval fake relic.

I created this blog because I have become increasingly interested in the Shroud as empirical evidence that Christianity is true and therefore that Naturalism (i.e. the philosophy that nature is all there is = there is no supernatural = there is no God, which dominates science and our secular Western society generally), is false.

The authenticity of the Shroud of Turin has therefore the highest relevance to the creation/evolution/design controversy because "evolution," in the all-important "standard scientific theory" sense of the word, assumes that Naturalism is true, that is, "God had no part in this process" (my emphasis) of bringing human beings (and everything else) into existence:

"Facing such a reality, perhaps we should not be surprised at the results of a 2001 Gallup poll confirming that 45 percent of Americans believe `God created human beings pretty much in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years or so'; 37 percent prefer a blended belief that `human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God guided this process'; and a paltry 12 percent accept the standard scientific theory that `human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God had no part in this process.'" (Shermer, M.B., "The Gradual Illumination of the Mind," Scientific American, February 2002. My emphasis).

However, I felt that posting on the Shroud to my CreationEvolutionDesign blog is tangential to that blog and would be better posted to a blog dedicated to the Shroud of Turin. I assume that while there is some overlap (like me), many of those interested in creation, evolution and intelligent design, may not be as interested in the Shroud of Turin, and vice-versa.

Then in checking out blogspot, I found that the names ShroudofTurin and TurinShroud were already taken (albeit not being used), so I had better create a blog with the name TheShroudofTurin (TSoT) without delay!

I will in future post all my blog posts on Shroud-related matters only here. I will therefore continue posting only here my series "Bogus Shroud of Turin?" (see parts #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6, #7, #8 & #9) from the next part #10: "The Shroud's blood and pollen closely matches the Sudarium of Oviedo's." I hope to also post a new series on the evidence for the Shroud of Turin being the actual burial sheet of Jesus Christ. But at present most of my time is being taken up writing a paper, "A proposal to radiocarbon-date the pollen of the Shroud of Turin" for a leading sindonology journal.

Comments are welcome, but the same policies will apply as for my other blog: 1) sub-standard comments will simply not appear; and 2) because I have neither the time, nor the inclination, for extended debate, any response by me will usually be only once to each individual on that comment.

Stephen E. Jones, BSc. (Biology).


"Only this much is certain: The Shroud of Turin is either the most awesome and instructive relic of Jesus Christ in existence-showing us in its dark simplicity how He appeared to men-or it is one of the most ingenious, most unbelievably clever, products of the human mind and hand on record. It is one or the other; there is no middle ground." (Walsh, J.E., "The Shroud," Random House: New York NY, 1963, pp.xi-xii)

Posted: 30 June 2007. Updated: 19 June 2016.