A Sphere or a Flat Disk ?
In regards to the images on the right it has been argued that
Jesus was not sitting on a spherical globe, but rather a flat
John, this image looks a WHOLE LOT like the still,
flat-earth images, and not anything like the racing
whirling sphere (which we all know illustrated in
stop-motion). This picture looks like a nice circular
flat plate. A still one, at that.
So I don't think it will support the common ball-earth
theory. There is Catholic art to support
ball-earth. But this image belongs to the flat-earth
A Sphere Not a flat Disk
Jesus is dressed in purple garments. Purple
dye was very expensive in ancient times. Only royalty were
allowed to wear it. Thus, the artist was clearly stating that
his was an image of Christ, the King of the World, which was
represented by Planet Earth. A person cannot sit on the edge of
a disk as it is balanced in an upright position. The only way
to sit on it would be to lay the disk flat on the ground.
However in that case, Jesus’ head would be at best only waist
high next to those who are clearly standing on their feet. Yet,
Jesus is at eye level with those standing. Therefore, Jesus,
King of World, must be sitting on a sphere, and not a flat
It is a flat disk that is suspended up in the air upon which
Jesus sits making them all at eye level.
However, if the “disk” was floating Jesus
would have seated himself in the center with his legs over the
edge. However, in the upper image, if it were a “disk”, Jesus is
seated on the very edge and about to fall off. And
besides, if it were a flat disk Jesus' body would be at a 90
degree angle or less at the hips and his knees would in that
case have to be much closer to his chest. Therefore, it is
a sphere and not a disk.
Just as science develops so does artistic technique. You cannot
expect someone from the 6th century to use modern technique to
show spherical shape.
And if you look closely, both of the two different images
located in two different cities shows gradations of blue from
the center to the edge, thus showing a somewhat 3D effect. The
complaint that the artist did not make use of modern NASA type
images is not realistic. This image was created more than 900
Nicolaus Copernicus was even born.
Only by his theories and discoveries did we eventually come to
learn the earth was whirling around is axis and “racing” around
the sun. The point here is that the earth was
spherical, not whether or not it was “whirling” or “racing.”
Second, there was no real debate about
whether the Earth was flat. All the reasonably educated people
in the sixth century, just as today, knew the earth had a
globular or spherical shape, more or less. So, the artist could
assume the people would have known the image under Jesus was
spherical, not flat. See Easy Proof below. If the artists in
the sixth century, according to the above objector’s ill
reasoned opinion, and these artists were wanting to represent
the earth as flat, they would have more likely used a rectangle
“He will … gather the dispersed of Judah from the four corners
of the earth.”
It was, and still is, common jargon to
speak of the earth this way, as having four corners, because on
the earth we describe the earth as having four directions,
North, East, South , and West. In Jewish thought and language
the earth and the altar represent each other. Everything is
described in its relationship with God. The Altar is a
microcosm of the earth. Therefore, it was common to speak of
each as having “four corners” because the Altar was described as
having “four corners.” Scott Hahn, Ph.D., explains this well.
“He made the altar of … and … He made horns for it on its four
Therefore, the image under Christ is not a
circle (or a rectangle) but a sphere. The artist knew people
would understand it as such. Unlike some uneducated people
today who enjoy endless debates on meaningless issues, it was
common knowledge among the reasonably educated people of the
sixth century that the earth has, more or less, a spherical
Proof : Earth
Spherical Not Flat
There are several ways to prove that the
earth, more or less, has a globular or spherical shape. You can
look at pictures or even videos from orbiting satellites.
However, there is a much easier method to prove that the earth
is not flat. And this method was well known for centuries
before Christopher Columbus.
The easiest way to prove that the earth has
a spherical shape (more or less) is to use the flattest thing on
All you need is a descent size boat, a
twenty foot high landmark, and a good size lake. Water always
seeks its own level. Therefore, it lays as flat as possible.
On a calm day even the oceans waves are less than six feet
high. Embark on the boat away from the landmark that is taller
than the waves. A twenty foot high building well exceeds the
height of waves on your average day. On the boat stand on a
deck that is ten feet above the water. You will notice the
landmark sink below horizon because the earth is NOT flat. The
earth has a more or less spherical shape. It you sail at night
use a light emitting from the top floor of the building, or make
use of a lighthouse. This experiment will prove beyond any
shadow of a doubt that the earth is spherical because an
unobstructed light can be seen for miles away in the darkness.
Many people have been on cruises and seen this for themselves.
And perhaps an even easier way to prove the
earth’s shape is to do the following. Observe a night view
across a big lake from the second floor of a building. You
would easily see light coming from the other side of the lake
from a similar second story building which also had its lights
on. For example, look from Chicago across Lake Michigan to the
Michigan state side at night. The fact is, all you see is
darkness because the curvature of the earth obstructs the
light. Therefore, the earth is not flat.
The ancient mariners knew their life was on
the line and they were no fools. They knew this too.
The flattest thing on earth proved the earth was
round - water. From the Middle Ages onward the sailors new
that the view from the "crow's nest" on the ship's mast provided
the best vantage point for distant objects because they knew the
earth was spherical in shape.