Skip to main content

On what day was Jesus crucified?

Every year as we make our way toward Easter many people wonder what day of the week Jesus actually died on. The reason being is that Jesus said that He would spend three days & three nights in the grave before rising (Matt. 12:40) but we celebrate His crucifixion on Friday and His resurrection on Sunday, which adds up to only 1 and 1/2 days.

People who support the view that says Jesus was crucified on Friday cite Mark 15:42 which says that Jesus was crucified on "the day before the Sabbath," and the Jewish Sabbath has always been on Saturday. But this still leaves the problem of Jesus saying He would spend 3 days and 3 nights in the grave. The key to understanding what day Jesus was crucified on is to understand that "High Holy Days" were considered Sabbath days also.

John 19:31 tells us that Jesus was crucified on the day leading up to Passover which was a "High Holy Day (Sabbath)." Based on the 3 days and 3 nights time table that Jesus gave us we can calculate that Jesus died on Wednesday evening leading into Passover which fell on Thursday that year. This would mean that Jesus was crucified the day before the Sabbath of that year's Passover. He spent Wednesday night Thursday day- Thursday night Friday day- Friday night and Saturday day- in the grave rising on Saturday evening (3 days and 3 nights). Thus, the women who visited the tomb on Sunday morning found the tomb empty.

Scripture further substantiates this timeline in Mark 16:1 which tells us that Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices for Jesus body after the "Sabbath" and then in Luke 23:56 it says that after they returned from preparing the spices they rested on the Sabbath. Therefore, the only way for it to be possible for the women to purchase spices after the Sabbath AND rest on the Sabbath afterward is if there were two Sabbaths that week. The first being the Passover Sabbath on Thursday, the second being the weekly Sabbath on Saturday. So the women would have most likely purchased the spices on Friday.

As you can see this timeline fits very well with the Biblical events which are mentioned surrounding the days during which Jesus was crucified, buried, and risen from the dead. Tradition has dictated that we celebrate the 3 day timeline from Friday to Sunday instead of Wednesday to Sunday. This does not mean that we should disengage in celebrating Easter the way our modern culture does. In the grand scheme of things it makes little difference as to which timeline you subscribe to. I hope this article has shed some light on this perplexing question that many have wondered about. God bless and happy resurrection day!(see below for a chart that illustrates this timeline)



Photo credit: http://www.rapturechrist.com/twosabbaths.htm

Written by: Kyle Bailey, M.Th.

For more inspirational content SUBSCRIBE to my YouTube channel.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Is it ok to let your kids believe in Santa Claus?

"A wink of his eye, and a twist of his head, soon led me to know I had nothing to dread."- Twas' the Night Before Christmas, Clement C. Moore As a kid I was taught that Santa Claus was going to bring me the presents I wished for on Christmas morning. I watched movies and cartoons about Santa riding his sleigh with gifts to give to all of the children around the world. Some of the stories depicted Santa as giving coal to bad kids and toys to good kids and I was told jokingly by my parents that I would "receive coal if I was bad," but it was never made to be a serious threat. Up until around the age of seven I really believed that Santa magically came down the chimney and left presents for my brothers and I, and it never caused me to have any resentment toward my parents for telling me he was real. I saw it as my parents wanting to give me a fun Christmas adventure, a magical experience that my brothers and I could use our imagination with. As I learned

How did Christians respond to Plagues throughout History?

For the video version of this article click here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bqJevPWIxGU The recent COVID-19 outbreak has brought our attention to the unavoidable reality of plague that has frequently been a part of human history. Starting in Wuhan China COVID-19 spread rapidly throughout every major continent in the world leading to panic buying, government mandated quarantines, social distancing, and higher awareness of hygiene practices. With the Center for Disease Control in the United States issuing guidelines asking for gatherings of no more than 10 people to be cancelled, churches across the nation have wondered what God is calling them to do in response.  As with many events in the modern world it’s important to let history be our ultimate teacher in this regard. We need to take a close look at how the Christian church has responded to plague and outbreak throughout history and learn from what they did, both good and bad. The amazing reality that we begin t

Did Ben Shapiro debunk the resurrection of Jesus???

In Ben Shapiro's recent interview with Christian apologist and philosopher Dr. William Lane Craig we find him presenting 3 major objections to the resurrection of Jesus Christ. In this article we will be analyzing these objections in detail. For the video version of this interview clip and analysis you can simply click THIS LINK . Objection #1: Many resurrections have happened in the Bible, why is Jesus’ resurrection unique? The resurrection of Jesus is unique to other Biblical resurrections in a few different ways. Dr. Craig correctly pointed out that the religio-historical context of Jesus being tried and condemned as a blasphemer and then subsequently raised from the dead, sends a message that God approved of Jesus’ claims about Himself. Also, other resurrections in the Bible were performed by a human conduit, in the case of Jesus we find God Himself raising Jesus from the dead, confirming His unique status as the Son of God. Lastly, other resurrections from the dead only