Christians from all over the world unanimously accept that Jesus, the Son of Man, was crucified, died, and was buried on a Friday and call that day of the year as Good Friday. However, Jesus Christ said that he will be on the heart of earth for three days and three nights. "Matt 12:40 as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth." It does not match if Jesus was buried at the sunset of Friday and resurrected at the dawn of Sunday that makes only two nights and one day, which is just half the time. Just to know the truth, let us look into the Bible.
In order to point out the time of resurrection from his burial, the Bible uses four phrases. Since the word of God has no contradictions in its doctrines, the four phrases must denote one thing. What is that thing? The four phrases are: three days and three nights, the third day, in three days, and after three days. Even though they appear to be different, they all say the same thing. In common use; one day is a package of a day and a night. Let us see the four phrases. First one is: three days and three nights- it is as is. The second phrase is: the third day- The very end of the third day will give three days and three nights. So, it is the same as the first. The third phrase is: in three days- Here also if we give the full third day, it will give three days and three nights. The fourth phrase is: after three days- Here, if we are cautious not to go into the fourth day but give the full third day, it means the phrase three days and three nights. The word of God requires from us the understanding of the wholesome word to teach the word. If we look into the wholesome word in this context, the phrase means three days and three nights.
The scripture Reference follows:
In three days: John 2:19 Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. 20 Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days? 21 But he spake of the temple of his body.
The third day: Matt 16:21 From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day.
Matt 17:22 … Jesus said unto them, The Son of man shall be betrayed into the hands of men: 23 And they shall kill him, and the third day he shall be raised again. …
Matt 20:19 And shall deliver him to the Gentiles to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify him: and the third day he shall rise again.
Mark 9:31 … and said unto them, The Son of man is delivered into the hands of men, and they shall kill him; and after that he is killed, he shall rise the third day.
Luke 24:7 Saying, The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.
1 Cor 15:4. he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
After three days: Matt 27:63 Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again.
Mark 8:31 … the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.
3 days and 3 nights: "Matt 12:40 as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth."
Jesus Christ was crucified on a Passover day. The next day to Passover day is the first day of the feast of the unleavened bread, which is a Sabbath day. In other words, the Passover day is a day of preparation for the Sabbath day, which is the first day of the feast of the unleavened bread. Somehow being ignorant, the top council decided that this Sabbath was a seventh day Sabbath, which made them think that Jesus was crucified on a Friday, in spite of the fact this Sabbath day is differentiated as a high day, but not as the seventh day. "1 Cor 5:7 … Christ our passover is sacrificed for us: John 19:31 … because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the sabbath day, for that sabbath day was an high day, Lev 23:3 Six days shall work be done: but the seventh day is the sabbath of rest, an holy convocation; ye shall do no work therein: it is the sabbath of the LORD in all your dwellings …… 5 In the fourteenth day of the first month at even is the LORD'S passover. 6 And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the feast of unleavened bread unto the LORD: seven days ye must eat unleavened bread. 7 In the first day ye shall have an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein."
Jesus Christ, being the Passover Lamb, was crucified on the Passover day at 9:00 am. The land was covered with darkness from 12:00 am to 3:00 pm. Jesus Christ died at 3:00 pm. "Mark 15:25 And it was the third hour, and they crucified him. 33 And when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. 34 And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? … 37 And Jesus cried with a loud voice, and gave up the ghost."
A Jewish day starts at the sunset and ends at the sunset. The Passover day ends at sunset and the Sabbath for the feast of the unleavened bread starts at the sunset. So, they were in a hurry to bury the body before the Sabbath that is the sunset. "Luke 23:54.. that day was the preparation, and the sabbath drew on. Matt 27:57 When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, … 58 He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered. John 19:41. in the place where he was crucified there was a garden; and in the garden a new sepulchre, wherein was never man yet laid. 42 There laid they Jesus therefore because of the Jews' preparation day; for the sepulchre was nigh at hand." Jesus was buried on the Passover day at sunset.
They gave him a quick burial since at sunset begins a Sabbath day. They can do nothing on that day since that was a Sabbath day, now one day is gone. Then they prepared spices and ointments on the second day. Then they had to rest one more day since it was also a Sabbath day, which was the seventh day Sabbath. This is the third day that ends at sunset. At night the women cannot embalm the body and so they came early in the morning even before sunrise. "Luke 23:55 women also, ... and beheld the sepulcher, and how his body was laid. 56 And they returned, and prepared spices and ointments; and rested the sabbath day according to the commandment. Luke 24:1 Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them. 2 And they found the stone rolled away from the sepulchre. 3 And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus." The body of Jesus was not there even before the day was dawn that is; even at the night the body was not there. That is, Jesus Christ was raised from the dead at the end of the seventh day Sabbath. That is, he was raised at the sunset of Saturday and the people found that out at the early morning before the dawn of Sunday morning. So, he was in the tomb, at the heart of the earth, only for three days and three nights.
Jesus was crucified on a Passover day, which was the preparation day, and was buried at the sunset. Then, there were an unleavened feast Sabbath day, a regular day and a seventh day Sabbath before resurrection. The seventh day Sabbath was Saturday, the regular day must have been Friday, the unleavened feast Sabbath must have been on Thursday, and Wednesday must have been the day that Jesus was crucified. In the same way we can also see that his resurrection was also immediately after the sunset on Saturday Sabbath, even though people found that out before early dawn, which was still night.
The purpose of this article is not to revoke the long held tradition of Good Friday. But, if someone ask a question because of curiosity, we may be able to answer. Further, to know the truth is always better than ignorance.
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