Wednesday, December 21, 2011

3 days and 3 nights

There's countless verses like this one: "As Jonah was 3 days and 3 nights in the heart of the earth, so shall the Son of Man be 3 days and 3 nights in the heart of the earth" (Matthew 12:40) If taken literally to mean 3, 24 hour periods, then Jonah would have been in the belly of the whale 72 hours right? So would the belly of the earth. Tradition has it that Jesus was buried Friday evening and rose Sunday morning, totalling around 30 odd hours, not 72. Mark 15:42..."when the evening was come, because it was the preparation, that is, the day before the Sabbath..." Then, "Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they (the 2 Marys and Salome,) were on their way to the tomb." So, crucified the day before the Sabbath, rested in the tomb all the Sabbath, and rose ON the third day...not AFTER 3 days and 3 nights.

Some say that he was crucified on Wednesday or Thursday, because there's more than one Sabbath in the Passover Week. But Mark 16:2 clearly states that he rose "on the first day of the week." So if the other 3 Sabbaths occurred in the Passover Week, (Thursday, Friday, and Saturday,) He could have died on Wednesday, been 3 days and 3 nights in the earth, and rose Sunday morning-except that he rose ON THE THIRD DAY. (Matt 16:21, Matt 17:22-23, Matt 20:18-19, Mark 9:31, Luke 9:22, John 2:19-21, Acts 10:39-40, I Cor. 15:3-4, and more.) But, again, Mark 8:31 says "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." Either "3 days and 3 nights" was just an idiomatic way of saying" parts of 3 days," or raised the third day," could somehow mean "raised after 3 FULL days and nights," remains well as other options...any ideas??

But, as Calvin says, there are essentials, and not-quite-so essential essentials. The essential point: Christ died for our sins, was buried, and rose again as redeeming Savior. Maybe God deliberately left the exact duration a little fuzzy, so we "don't judge one another with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration, or the Sabbath day. These are a shadow of the things that were to come, the reality, however, is found in Christ." (Colossians 2:16-17)

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