Hidden Treasures

The Bible is much more than a book of religion.

Jesus, Our Passover Lamb

There are two facts we know for certain concerning the time line of Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection. These are uncontestable facts. 

First Fact

In Matthew 12:38-40  Jesus plainly announced that He would be buried in the heart of the earth for three days and three nights.  This would be impossible  if Jesus died on “Good Friday”.and rose early Sunday morning.  A careful study of the Scriptures will show that Jesus died on Wednesday. This is something I would never argue. It simply makes sense to me and allows me to accept Jesus’ statment in Matthew 12:38-40 without having to try to defend  an illogical Friday crucifixion.  Keep in mind that the Jewish day begins at sunset. 

Second Fact

No one questions that Jesus rose the first day of the week. John 20:1 makes a positive statement that Jesus rose on the first day of the week.   

Since this is true, Jesus had to die on Wednesday and had to be in the grave three days and three nights:   Thursday night and Thursday,  Friday night and Friday and Saturday night and Saturday. Jesus  rose from the tomb early Sunday morning. The stone was rolled away so His friends could discover the empty tomb. 

An apparent Problem to a Wednesday Crucifixion

However, this idea of a Wednesday crucifixion poses an apparent problem. The Bible teaches that Jesus’ body had to be taken down from the cross and buried before the Sabbath which was approaching. This leads most Christians to believe that Jesus died on Friday before the weekly Sabbath on Saturday.  The solution to this problem is that the Sabbath Day spoken of here was not the weekly Sabbath; rather the annual Feast of Unleavened Bread Sabbath.  John 19:31 

Jesus, Our Passover Lamb 

Let us examine the Passover briefly. It was first mentioned in Exodus 12:2-6.  From this passage we learn that it was to be observed the first month of the Jewish year, Abib. After the Exile the name of the month was changed to Nisan.   This would be April for us.   The Passover  lambs were  to be slain on the 14th day with nothing remaining on the 15th day. 

In Lev. 23:5-7 we learn further that on the 15th day, following the Passover slaying on the 14th day, there was to be a special  week-long celebration, The Feast of Unleavened Bread. The first and last days of this feast were special Sabbaths.  This was the Sabbath referred to in the crucifixion account.  Jesus body had to be buried before sundown, the beginning of this Feast of Unleavened Bread.  

With this in mind think how beautifully Jesus fulfills the type of  our Passover Lamb; slain on the 14th day of  Nisan just when lambs were being slain all over the land. See John 19:14.  Could a more perfect Lamb be found?  Could a more perfect day be chosen on which to slay The Lamb of God?

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March 2, 2006 - Posted by | Passion Week, Resurrection

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