I remember one of my mentors, now in Heaven with Jesus, who used to discipline her children thusly: "I'm going to count to three. One....two...." And, if she got to "three", they had had it! Well, that is not what I'm referring to in the title of this morning's meditation.
Let me warn you: this is one for Bible Nerds. This is not a quick morning meditation and then "on with the day". This is one that you will want to ponder. And, it is entirely borrowed.
As a child, I had a lot of trouble figuring out how Jesus could have been crucified on a Friday, risen on a Sunday and there have been 3 days in between these events. Even as a child I could count to three. Jesus said this: (Matthew 12:40)
Friday night....Saturday night.....1....2.....Sunday morning?
You may know that the Jewish calendar, the one which most certainly Jesus would have followed, stipulates "daytime" and "nighttime" differently than do we with our Gregorian, solar calendar. (The Jewish calendar is a lunar calendar.) Even so, with a Friday crucifixion, you still can't get "three days and three nights" out of that. So, if this has puzzled you too, I submit for your consideration the study done by Shari Abbott, as presented on her blog.
What amazes me about this study is how beautifully the final days of Jesus and His bearing our sins fits with the Jewish feasts of Unleavened Bread, Passover and First Fruits, all of which were celebrated during the days in question.
In a follow-up blog post, two more reasons for a Thursday crucifixion are presented:
Some of you will not even go to these sites and consider a Thursday crucifixion because you are convinced that a Sabbath can only be a Saturday (See Mark 15:42). So, let me give you a teaser regarding this position: Any "high, holy day" during a Jewish feast/convocation is referred to as a Sabbath. (See John 19:31). And, that is what is at play here. The "high, holy day" Sabbath could fall on ANY day of the week. In the case of Jesus' Passion Week, there was a "high, holy day" Sabbath on Friday (Feast of Unleavened Bread) and a weekly Sabbath the very next day, on Saturday.
Check it out at the links above. Feel free to disagree. I'm not trying to start an argument. As the blog author says, search the Scriptures and come to your own conclusion.
Good morning, Father! Thank you for the marvelous mysteries of Your Word, which instruct us in matters of living and following hard after You. Thank you for this new day and the beauty of it. Draw us close to You and teach us Your ways, as we continue to meditate this week on Your Precious Son's amazing sacrifice for us. In Jesus' name, amen.