We know for certain that Jesus and two other men who were convicted of crimes were crucified on the same hill. Is there any basis for believing that there may have been other convicts?

2 Answers 2


It is recorded in all four gospels that there were two, and only two, other men crucified with our Lord Jesus:

At that time two rebels were being crucified with Him, one on the right and one on the left. (Matthew 27:38)

And with him they crucified two robbers, one on his right and one on his left. (Mark 15:27)

Two others, who were criminals, were also led away to be executed with Jesus. (Luke 23:32)

So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who had been crucified with him. (John 19:32)

I don't know how it could be any clearer.

  • Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. None of those quotes explicitly rules out that no one else was executed on that day at that time and on that same hill. They suggest to varying degrees that there were only 2, but it's also not unheard of Scripture to mention what was relevant and ignore other aspects.
    – eques
    Jan 18, 2021 at 13:28
  • @Andrews +1 for solid answer and citing the scriptures. You're also spot on, brother- it couldn't be any clearer.
    – Tennman7
    Jan 18, 2021 at 13:41
  • @Eques, the Matthew and Mark accounts both say "two other". One of the most important rules of Bible interpretation- "If at first the text seems to make literal sense , seek no other sense, or it will be nonsense." Reading something into the text that is not there is eisegesis. It's like suggesting that really there were 15 apostles or that the days of creation were each 1 million years.
    – Tennman7
    Jan 18, 2021 at 13:49
  • @Tennman7 You are correct that literal cannot be ignored to justify higher senses, but not entirely relevant here in that we aren't discussing moral or mystical interpretations of exactly 2 thieves being crucified. Your examples are interesting, but not sufficient counterexamples. For example, Mark's account (6:41-45) only mentions 5000 men. Surely from that you wouldn't conclude that no women or children were present despite not being mentioned?
    – eques
    Jan 18, 2021 at 14:05
  • 1
    I'm not specifically arguing that there were more than 2, only that reading "only" into the verses is a stretch ("eisegesis").
    – eques
    Jan 18, 2021 at 14:07

Not within the Biblical accounts, which is the only recorded history of that particular day/location.

There's no reason to dogmatically state that there were only two others with Christ. It's certainly possible that others were there, but they aren't recorded as being there. Other than pure speculation, there's no reason to believe there were others there, and there's no reason to say that there weren't others there. The Scriptural accounts may only record these two because they were the only two right next to Him, and the only two that the writers bothered to mention. Or it could be that there were only two.

  • This is pretty much where I stand, but I'll give the question some time to give some others an opportunity to make a case if they have one before accepting an answer. Jan 9, 2013 at 3:09

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