Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Good Wednesday - The Day Jesus was Crucified

Have you ever been puzzled how the Lord could have been crucified and buried on a Friday and then rose on a Sunday- if He was to have been in the heart of the earth for 3 days and 3 nights?

I believe that He was crucified and buried on a Wednesday. Below are Biblical reason to my belief. The notes are a dictated from my pastor's Sermon "Good Wednesday."

What day of a week was Jesus Crucified and put in the tomb?

Matt. 12:38-40 "Then certain of the scribes and of the Pharisees answered, saying, Master, we would see a sign from thee. But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous (adulterous implies unfaithfulness to God) generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas: For 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."

These are words that are pertaining to the death, burial & resurrection. These 3 days and 3 nights were exactly what the Lord meant to say. Three full days and three full nights.

What was the length of the day? John 11:9 "
Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day?..." If there are 12 hours in a day, then there must be 12 hours in a night.

Any day of the week is a good day to worship the Lord. Colossians 2:16 "Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days:"

No where does the Bible say that Jesus was crucified and died on the cross on Fri.

Mark 15:42 "And now when the even was come, because it was the preparation, that is, the day before the sabbath," Because the Jewish weekly Sabbath was always observed on Saturday, the 7th day of the week. The conclusion is naturally drawn that because Jesus was crucified on the day before the Sabbath that He must have been crucified on Fri.

It's a well know fact that Israel had many other many Sabbathdays to observe. More than just the weekly sabbath that fell on the 7th day of the week.

For example, The Lord's passover - which occured yearly, was always a Sabbath day which was to be observed by the nation of Israel. It always to be observed an an exact time. The old testiment tells us that God gave them the specific instructions that they were to observe the passover on the 14th day of the first month of the Jewish calendar. The month of Nisan. No matter which day of the week it fell, it was to be a Sabbath day or a day of rest and worship to God. Like the weekly Sabbath, they were to stop all labor and physical activity on this day.

When Mark 15:42 tells us that Jesus was crucified on the day before the Sabbath, was it referring to the weekly Sabbath, Saturday, or could it have been referring to the yearly Passover Sabbath? The Bible doesn't leave us to speculate such a question.

(This is dealing with the events surrounding the crucifiction surrounding our Lord. He's standing before Pilate.)

In John 19:12-15
"And from thenceforth Pilate sought to release him: but the Jews cried out, saying, If thou let this man go, thou art not Caesar's friend: whosoever maketh himself a king speaketh against Caesar.
When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he brought Jesus forth, and sat down in the judgment seat in a place that is called the Pavement, but in the Hebrew, Gabbatha.
And it was the preparation of the passover, and about the sixth hour: and he saith unto the Jews, Behold your King!
But they cried out, Away with him, away with him, crucify him. Pilate saith unto them, Shall I crucify your King? The chief priests answered, We have no king but Caesar."

Notice that vs. 14 clearly tells us that our Lord's trial and crucifiction occured on the day of preparation before the Passover Sabbath. The preparation day was a day for the people of God to make preparations for that yearly and special day know as the Passover. There were a lot of activities involved in that. (The Passover Lamb and the meal they were to eat- all spiritual truth. To remind them of what God did for them during that special event known as Passover.) This was the day that always proceeded the Sabbath day known as the Passover. On the Passover Sabbath, all work had to cease. There could be no activity other than which was outline.

John 19:31 "The Jews therefore, 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,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away."

A High Day - was one of the annual Feasts Days or yearly Sabbath Days observed by the nation of Isreal. It was a special yearly observance. Also called Holy Convocation (Lev.23:2). Some would say that a solution to all of this is that the Passover Sabbath, in the year that our Lord died, occured on Saturday or that it fell on the same day as the weekly Sabbath. Therefore, they believed that being the order of events and the way that the calender fell that year, that Jesus was crucified and buried on Friday.

Look at Leviticus 23: 1-8
(Notice how God specifically gave instructions to the nation of Israel concerning there Sabbath day.)

"And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of the LORD, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my feasts.
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.
These are the feasts of the LORD, even holy convocations, which ye shall proclaim in their seasons.
In the fourteenth day of the first month at even is the LORD's passover.
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.
In the first day ye shall have an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein.
But ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD seven days: in the seventh day is an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein."

If the Passover would have fallen on Saturday, or the 7th day of the week, in the year that our Lord was crucified, that it required that the next day being Sunday or the 1st day of the week would have also had to have been a Sabbath day. The Passover Sabbath Day, which always fell (even to this day) on the 14 day of the month of Nisan, but following that special Sabbath day, was another Sabbath Day called the Feast of the Unleavened Bread. It always occurs on the 15th day of Nisan. Every year, regardless of which days of the week they fell in the calendar, Israel observed the Passover Sabbath on the 14th day of the first month & the Feast of the Unleavened Bread on the 15th day of the first month. They were back to back Sabbath days. They were always required by God, of His people, to incorporate into their yearly observances.
We know that Sunday, the day the Lord arose, was not a Sabbath day.

(The ladies are now on their way to the tomb to prepare our Lord's body for burial)
Mark 16:1-2 "
And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him."

(Let's don't skim over words & statements. They are not here to just fill up space. That 1st part is there for a reason. And when the sabbath was past)

"And very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun. "

The conclusion is: Sunday, which is the 1st day of the week, is the day that our Lord arose from the tomb. If the yearly Passover fell on Saturday of the same week that our Lord was crucified and buried, then Sunday had to also be a Sabbath day. Because the 14th day and the 15th day, the day following the Passover day, also had to be observed as a Sabbath day. Had Sunday been a Sabbath day, the Feast of the Unleavened Bread Sabbath, then these ladies would not have been permitted to go to the tomb to finish preparing our Lord's body for burial.

For the Lord to be in the heart of the earth for 3 days and 3 nights like He said He would when He gave the sign of Jonas, there isn't any other way other than to have a Wednesday crucifiction and burial. Some say that part of a day constitutes a whole day and a part of a night constitutes a whole night. The Lord said that a day has 12 hours in it. (John 11:9) So that dismisses that.

Let's say hypothetically that Jesus was crucified on Friday, has it ever crossed your mind and puzzled you how you still get 3 days and 3 nights out of that? Even if a portion of a day can be concluded as an entire day. If He was crucified on Friday, a couple of ours before 6 o'clock, which is the beginning of a new day for the Jews. The Passover began at 6 o'clock, that evening. If He was crucified on Friday, let's say we'll take a couple of hours there on Friday, to constitute a day. All day Saturday. Then if we want to say, hypothetically, that Jesus didn't arise till Sunday morning, daylight. That would constitute, hypothetically, the 3rd day. You still can't get 3 nights out of that. That's Friday & Saturday- only.

Thursday- was the Passover Sabbath
Friday- The Feast of Unleavened Bread Sabbath
Saturday- The 7th day of the week Sabbath

Then Sunday, the 1st day of the week, which began at sundown on Saturday evening. (remember that the Jewish day started at 6 o'clock in the evening - of the previous day.)

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