ON WHICH DAYS WERE THE CRUCIFIXION AND RESURRECTION OF CHRIST?
What are the recorded facts of the crucifixion and resurrection?
There is but only one dependable and historical record on this, the Bible,
and any tradition that conflicts with Gods word must be dismissed.
Jesus gave us a sign as proof of his Messiahship:
"An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign; and there will be
no sign 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 will the Son of Man be three days
AND three nights in the heart of the earth" (Matt 12:39-40)
I will rise again." (Matt 27:63)
"And he began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things,
and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and AFTER
three days rise again
(from the grave)." (Mark 8:31)
"...they will kill him, and after that he is killed, he will rise the third
day." (Mark 9:31)
"Jesus said to them, 'Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise
it up'...But he was speaking of the temple of his body." (John 2:19-21)
"For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how
that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was
buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures."
(1 COR 15:3-4)
The Pharisees demanded proof and Jesus offered only one, his length of time
in the grave, THREE DAYS AND THREE NIGHTS.
Now of course, if Jesus did not fulfill that sign, he was an impostor and
there is no Savior.
Satan has caused people to ridicule the story of Jonas, and set up their own
tradition that denies that Christ is the Messiah. Theologians and scholars claim
that Christ was only in the grave one-day and two nights, only half as long as he
said he would be. In doing this they deny the only proof that he is our Savior.
They claim that he was placed in the tomb shortly before sunset Friday and rose
at sunrise Sunday, only two nights and one day. To follow in this tradition is
to reject the scriptures and Christ.
It was not until after the last of the twelve apostles had died that the
Good-Friday Easter-Sunday tradition began, and spread through the church, this
tradition has continued unto this day deceiving a great deal of people.
A Day According to Scripture
"And God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light
Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening (Darkness)
and the morning [Light) were the first day.... And the evening and the morning
were the second day.... And the evening and the morning were the third day"
Did you get that? A period of darkness and light equal one
day, three periods of darkness
and three periods of light equal three days.
Jesus knew exactly how many hours are in a "day" and in a
"night", for Jesus said,
"Are there not twelve hours in a day ...
but if a man walks in the night, he stumbles" (John 11:910),
that there are 12 hours of day and 12 hours of night.
Jesus had to be in the grave exactly 72 hours (36 hours of day
+ 36 hours of night), and rising at the time of
day that he was buried or he would have been a liar.
For a division of time based upon time separation back then, see this Chart.
Jesus ate the Passover meal with His disciples at the beginning of the 14th.
Jesus was then betrayed by Judas, arrested and during the night brought before
the high priest.
Jesus was crucified and died around 3 p.m. This was the preparation day for the
annual —not weekly—Sabbath. Jesus body was placed in the tomb just before
This was a high annual Sabbath day, the first day of the Feast of Unleavened
Bread. It is described as the day after the “Day of Preparation”. Wednesday
night and the daylight portion of Thursday were the first of three days and
nights in the tomb.
The high annual Sabbath day was now past and the women bought and prepared
spices for anointing Jesus body before the start of the weekly Sabbath day,
which begins Friday at sunset. Thursday night and the daylight portion of Friday
was the second of three days and nights.
The women rested on the weekly Sabbath. Jesus rose near sunset, exactly three
days and three nights after he was placed in the tomb.
The women brought the prepared spices early in the morning while it was still
dark. Jesus had already risen. He did not rise on Sunday morning, but near
sunset the day before, three days and three nights after being put in the tomb.
So which day was the crucifixion on, and does the Bible back it up? Lets look at
what the Bible has to say.
"You know that after two days is the Passover, and the Son of Man is to
be betrayed and crucified". (Matt 26:2)
"Now at that feast he released unto them one prisoner," (feast of
unleavened bread/Passover). (Mark 15:6)
"Now the feast of unleavened bread drew near, which is called the
Passover". (Luke 22:1)
"Then they led Jesus from Caiaphas into the judgment hall: and it was
early; and they themselves went not into the judgment hall, lest they should be
defiled; but that they might eat the Passover." (John 18:28)
"And it was the preparation of the Passover, and about the sixth
hour:" (John 19:14)
"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
a high day, besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they
might be taken away." (John 19:31)
According to scripture, Jesus was crucified on Passover,
Passover was the day before the
annual high Sabbath day of unleavened bread. The preparation for the feast of
unleavened bread, a annual high Sabbath, was the day before placing it on
To verify what a high Sabbath day is, turn to Leviticus 23, you will notice
that the annual holy days were also called Sabbath days.
According to the Hebrew calendar, Passover fell on Wednesday in the year 31
AD, and that would place the crucifixion on Wednesday, the preparation day for
the feast of unleavened bread.
One should also note that Mary Magdalene did not buy spices to anoint the
body of Jesus until after the Sabbath was past, yet after preparing the spices
they rested the Sabbath day. Luke 23:56
Christ was in the grave three days, that would make
the crucifixion on a Wednesday.
The Time of Day
We have now seen that the day of Christ's crucifixion was on Wednesday,
but does the Bible tell us of the time of day?
Jesus was raised on the cross at the third hour (9a.m.) (Mark 15:25) and
breathed his last breath at approximately 3p.m. "And about the ninth hour
(3p.m.) Jesus cried with a loud voice....
Jesus, when he cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost." (Matt
27:46-50) also Mark 15:34-37 and Luke 23:32. Jesus had spent approximately six
hours on the cross.
Hence Christ died approximately 3p.m. and was buried before sunset because of
the preparation day, he was buried late in the day.
There should be no doubt that Jesus was NOT crucified on a Friday, but that he was crucified on a
becoming our Passover sacrifice.
One last note here, in Daniel's prophecy of the seventy weeks, Jesus was to
be cut of in the middle of the week. This prophecy speaks of his being cut off
three and a half years into his ministry, yet it is significant that he was also
cut off literally in the middle of a week.
Which Day Was the Resurrection?
Now, before determining the day of his crucifixion, let us determine his day
of resurrection, this in turn will give us what we need to determine the
"In the end of the Sabbath (Saturday), as it BEGAN
to dawn toward
the first day of the week (Sunday), came Magdalene and the other Mary to see the
sepulcher.... for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven...And the angel
said unto the women, fear not for I know that you seek Jesus, which was
crucified. He is not here, for he is risen, (he had risen prior to dawn) (Matt
"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
(Jesus). And VERY EARLY in the morning the first day of the week, they
came to the sepulcher at the rising of the sun.... And entering the sepulcher
they saw a young man ... And he said to them, be not afraid, you seek Jesus of
Nazareth which was crucified: he is risen; (past tense, has already risen)"
"Now when Jesus had risen EARLY, on the first day of the week he appeared
first to Mary Magdalene (his first appearance was on the next day after rising)" (Mark 16:9).
"Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning,
they came unto the sepulcher...He is not here, but is (has) risen:...
It was Mary Magdalene, and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James, and other women that were with them, which told these things unto the apostles.
"The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet
dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre....
Then the disciples went away again unto their own home. But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the
sepulchre, And seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain. And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him. And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus. Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away. Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master. Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God. Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord, and that he had spoken these things unto her."
Most people suppose that these texts state a Sunday sunrise resurrection, but
they do not say that, it was
very early, the sun was beginning to rise, and Jesus had already risen before
they got there. They arrived just before dawn of
the first day of the week (Sunday), scripture does not tell us the exact moment
he rose, but we know it was some time between his being placed in the tomb and
prior to the the Mary's showing up at the grave. Christ died at 3pm, it most
likely that it took at least an hour to get permission to take the body and bury it. So
some time after 4pm he rose, a time when there were no witnesses to record it.
The accounts appear to support that there was more than one
visit to the tomb by different visitors.
Mary Magdalene and the other Mary (Matt 28:1)
Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James, and Salome
Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and
others with them (Luke 24:10)
An Angel of the Lord sitting on the rolled away stone (Matt
A young man dressed in a white rob sitting on the right
side (Mark 16:5)
Two men in bright clothing standing beside the women inside
the tomb (Luke 24:4)
two angels in white, seated where Christ's body had been
The evidence is that there were different
visiting the tomb, and differing numbers of angels/men at the tomb supporting
multiple visits and differing times.
It is now up to you to choose whether to worship in truth or fantasy, only
you can make the right choice.