Christ’s Crucifixion: The Passover Lamb

It has lengthy been held within the Christian Church that Christ become crucified on the 6th day of the week, the day that we now call Friday – subsequently the time period “Good Friday.”

This is a misunderstanding: Christ turned into in fact crucified at the 5th day of the week, the day that we now name Thursday. Proof of this statement will follow under, but that evidence isn’t always the vital point of this essay: no person can be admitted into the kingdom of heaven, nor will absolutely everyone be denied admittance due to his or her belief or coaching in this point. What is crucial to recognize is that there was handiest one day on God’s calendar on which Christ might have been crucified. We will deal first with the misconception regarding the day of the week on which the Lord become crucified, and could then pass on to the extra importance of the overall timing of His crucifixion.

How become it determined by the early Church fathers that Jesus need to have been crucified on a Friday? This false impression arises from the subsequent passages (and related passages from the opposite gospels): whilst Jesus was introduced earlier than Pilate, the gospel of Mark reviews: “It become Preparation Day (that is, the day before the Sabbath). So as evening approached, Joseph of Arimathea, a distinguished member Christian Bible studies of the Council, who become himself watching for the kingdom of God, went boldly to Pilate and requested for Jesus’ frame.” (Mark 15:42, 43 NIV).

What is “the sabbath” but the seventh day of the week, and what then might be “the day earlier than the sabbath” however Friday? It is consequently smooth to finish that Jesus was crucified on Friday. This is an wrong end, however — however handiest the gospel account of John gives the facts vital to attain the ideal conclusion. But before we take a look at the clarifying passage in John, we should first have a higher knowledge of the time period “sabbath.” For this we flip to the twenty third chapter of the book of Leviticus.

In Leviticus 23:3 we read, “There are six days whilst you could paintings, however the 7th day is a day of sabbath relaxation, an afternoon of sacred meeting. You are not to do any paintings; wherever you stay, it’s far a sabbath to the LORD.” This, of course, is the which means this is usually intended and understood by way of the time period “sabbath” — the 7th day of the week, the day which the Lord commanded the Israelites to have a look at every week as a day of holy relaxation. But the term way greater. Let’s study similarly on this bankruptcy.

In Leviticus 23:5-8 we read, “The LORD’s Passover begins at twilight at the fourteenth day of the first month. On the 15th day of that month the LORD’s Festival of Unleavened Bread starts; for seven days you should eat bread made without yeast. On the first day preserve a sacred meeting and do no normal work. For seven days present a food offering to the LORD. And on the 7th day maintain a sacred meeting and do no ordinary paintings.” Compare the language from verse 3 (concerning the weekly seventh day sabbath) with the language of verse 7 (regarding the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread). Both are “a sacred meeting”; on both the Israelites are commanded to “do no (servile) paintings therein.” We see then that the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread fits the definition of the phrase “sabbath,” even though there’s no unique definition of these days as a “sabbath.” Now allow’s maintain explore further inside the chapter.

Regarding the Feast of Weeks, these days typically known as Pentecost, we study, “From the day after the Sabbath, the day you delivered the sheaf of the wave offering, count number off seven full weeks. Count off fifty days as much as the day after the 7th Sabbath, after which present an presenting of latest grain to the LORD” (Leviticus 23:15, sixteen). Skipping over verses 17-20, which describe the services to be made on this ceremonial dinner day, we read in verse 21, “On that same day you are to proclaim a sacred assembly and do no regular work. This is to be an enduring ordinance for the generations to return, anyplace you live.” Note once more that this day is described as “a sacred assembly,” and the Israelites are commanded to “do no servile paintings therein” – once more the definition of a “sabbath.” But we still haven’t visible the real word “sabbath” used in connection with any day aside from the 7th day of every week, so there could stay a no doubt. We will now eliminate that doubt with the aid of inspecting the commands for the Feast of Trumpets.

In verses 24 and 25 we study, “Say to the Israelites: ‘On the primary day of the seventh month you are to have a day of sabbath relaxation, a sacred meeting venerated with trumpet blasts. Do no normal work, but present a meals supplying to the LORD.” Here we’ve got a clear connection past any doubt: the Lord is instructing the Israelites to take a look at every of these ceremonial dinner days as a “sabbath” – a phrase which He right here defines Himself as “a sacred meeting,” a day wherein the Israelites are to “do no (servile) paintings.” (I placed the phrase “servile” in parentheses as it seems in a number of these passages but now not in others.)

I will no longer cite the descriptions of the Day of Atonement and the banquet of Tabernacles, however through reading the the rest of the 23rd chapter of Leviticus, you can actually easily verify that these days have been also Sabbaths inside the very strictest feel of the word. So we see that after the time period “sabbath” is used within the gospels, in addition to some place else, it could discuss with a weekly 7th day sabbath or to any of the seven high feast days which the Lord informed the Israelites to examine for the duration of the year.

Returning now to the gospel of John, we study in 19:31 the passage regarding the same factor of time that become the problem of the passage noted above from Mark 15: “Now it become the day of Preparation, and day after today become to be a unique Sabbath. Because the Jewish leaders did no longer want the bodies left on the crosses during the Sabbath, they requested Pilate to have the legs broken and the bodies taken down.” Only John tells us this vital element: day after today become now not an regular seventh-day sabbath, but instead “a unique sabbath (or inside the King James version, a “high day”).” “A special sabbath” method that the imminent day changed into a sabbath as it was a dinner party day — one of the seven high banquet days ordained via God — and not as it changed into the seventh day of the week. It could also have been a Saturday, because the Passover (14 Nisan) and the Feast of Unleavened Bread (15 Nisan) could fall on any sequential days of the week – they had been scheduled in line with the day of the month, no longer the day of the week. But by way of exploring similarly we can see how we may be certain that in this yr the “special sabbath,” the sabbath of the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, did now not fall on a Saturday, and that the upcoming sabbath day noted right here must in reality have been the 6th day of the week, which we now call Friday — meaning that the day prior to this, on which Jesus should had been crucified, turned into a Thursday.