No doubt, everyone is familiar with the allegation that the Romans crucified Jesus (as). As the allegation goes, the Romans and the Jewish rabbis arrested Jesus (as) and crucified him. Indeed, the whole Christian world embraces the belief that Jesus (as) died but then came to life again and ascended to heaven. However, when we refer to the Qur'an, we see that what really happened is not as believed:
And (on account of) their saying, "We killed the Messiah, ‘Isa son of Maryam, Messenger of Allah." They did not kill him and they did not crucify him but it was made to seem so to them. Those who argue about him are in doubt about it. They have no real knowledge of it, just conjecture. But they certainly did not kill him. Allah raised him up to Himself. Allah is Almighty, All-Wise. (Surat an-Nisa': 157-158)
The fact the Qur'an reveals to us is obvious. The attempts of the Romans, provoked by the Jews to murder Jesus (as), proved unsuccessful. The expression quoted from the above verse "…but it was made to seem so to them" explains the real nature of this event. Jesus (as) was not murdered but he was raised up to Allah's presence. Furthermore, Allah draws our attention to the fact that those making this claim know nothing about the truth. Again in another verse, Allah said He, Himself, would take Jesus (as) back and He would raise him up to Him.
When Allah said, "‘Isa, I will take you back and raise you up to Me and purify you of those who are disbelievers. And I will place the people who follow you above those who are disbelievers until the Day of Rising. Then you will all return to Me, and I will judge between you regarding the things about which you differed." (Surah Al ‘Imran: 55)
We will analyse the actual meaning of the word "take back" in the next chapter. Other important pieces of evidence the Qur'an provides on this subject are the general expressions used for the death of other prophets. The expressions used for the death or killing of prophets in the Qur'an are very clear. For instance in Surat an-Nisa 155 there is an explicit example. The verse follows: "Because of the fact that they broke their covenant, and rejected Allah's signs, and killed the Prophets without any right to do so and said, Our hearts are uncircumcised, Allah has stamped them with disbelief,…" The expression used for Jesus (as) in the Qur'an is very clear: "They did not kill him and they did not crucify him but it was made to seem so to them." This statement stresses that Jesus (as) was not killed, no matter which method was employed for this end.