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“YOUR BIBLE SAYS JESUS WAS IN THE GRAVE FOR ONLY TWO NIGHTS AND ONE DAY”
I recently had an encounter with a Muslim, who asked some perfectly legitimate questions concerning some Bible Scriptures, which seem to contradict one another and even the truth from Jesus’ own mouth! Even Christians get very confused when trying to interpret the Roman Catholic/Protestant, Good Friday/Easter Monday Feast in the light of the following verses without considering the contextual truth of all four Gospels and the Old Testament, Hebraic Levitical law.
“In Matthew 27 and 28:1, Jesus died on Friday, right? If Mary Magdalene visits the sepulcher on Sunday morning to find it empty... that only counts as two nights (24 hours) and one (12 hour) day, which is 36 hours. But Jesus said he will rise after three whole days and three whole nights, which is at least 72 hours? Someone must be lying, right?”
I am only interested in believing and telling the whole contextual truth of Scripture. The four Gospels, as all Scripture, must be interpreted as a whole. To focus on certain verses of only one Gospel will always be confusing.
Ž Jesus Himself said He would be in the grave for three nights and three days — that is a literal 72-hour period. Anyone who denies this truth, dares to make Jesus a liar! One 12-hour night, one 12-hour day, and another 12-hour night can never and will never constitute what Jesus unmistakably declared. He said, “...As Jonah was three days and three nights [a 72-hour period] in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights [a 72-hour period] in the heart of the earth…” (Mt. 12:38-40; Jonah 1:17; Jn. 19:13-36; 31:33.)
Ž Creator God Himself, (and the Hebrews who wrote the Old Testament,) knew very well that 24 hours account for one day and one night, or one night and one day — which is a whole ‘day.’ God Himself created time on earth in Gen. 1:5, “God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening [night] AND morning [day] were the first day” — a 24 hour period.
Ž Where God says, “One day is like a thousand years and a thousand years are like one day,” He was speaking metaphorically; referring to heaven, the afterlife or eternity, not to literal time here on earth! Twelve hours of a day can never account for a full 24-hour day as twisters of the Scriptures allege — and Hebrews never saw a ‘day’ as a 12-hour period, but as a night and a day, (a 24-hour period,) just like Jesus said.
Ž Many Christians also reject the declaration “after [not during or before] three days and three nights He will rise.” They use the phrase, “on the third day He will rise,” in an attempt to fit Jesus’ ‘three nights and three days in the grave’ into the Roman Catholic Church's Good Friday/Easter Monday feast. According to this interpretation, written into the Bible by Catholic priests we may assume, they changed three 24-hour days into “two 12-hour nights and one 12-hour day.” However, this only makes for 36 hours and not 72 hours as Jesus said!
Ž Adherents of this deception even use references from the book of Ester uncontextually to substantiate their claim. However, a 72-hour period does not end ‘on’ (interpreted as ‘while the time is still running,’) but ‘after’ the period is over!
Ž Why so many different interpretations and illogic wordplay on such an important event? Jesus is not a man that He should lie. If we find ‘discrepancies’ in Scripture, we headstrong humans are always at fault! In the context of “all” Scripture, everything we need to know about Jesus’ time in the grave was written for us in the ‘all truth’ of Scripture.
THE 8-DAY PASSOVER FEAST ITSELF, AND ALL FOUR GOSPELS TOGETHER, HOLD THE KEY TO THIS ‘MYSTERY’
Ø John declared in 19:14-16, 31, [Jesus died on the cross at 3 o’clock p.m., the Jewish ninth hour.] “Because it was the Preparation Day, that the bodies should not had to remain on the cross on the high Sabbath Day, [which began 3 hours later at sunset,] the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away [before dark or the beginning of the “High” Sabbath Day, which was the first day of the 7-day Feast of Unleavened Bread.]”
· It is a fact that this High Sabbath, which followed Jesus’ death, was not the usual Saturday Sabbath. Wikipedia Encyclopedia explains, “High Sabbaths, in Christian and Messianic Jewish usage, are seven annual festivals and [Sabbath] rest days, recorded in the books of Leviticus and Deuteronomy…”
· “Preparation Day” means, (Holman’s Bible Dictionary,) “The day of the week in which Jews prepared necessities to avoid work on the [or a] Sabbath, (compare Ex. 20:8-11; Mat. 12:1-14; John 9:14-16 )...”
Ž The Passover Feast is actually an 8-day Feast. In Ex. 12, God said to the Hebrews in Egypt, “On the 14th of Nisan, [the first month of the Hebrew year…] the assembly… shall kill [the lamb] at twilight… and eat the flesh on that night…” [On that same night, sometime after midnight, the Hebrews left Egypt.] Lev. 23:5-7 continues, "On the 14th day of the 1st month Nisan at twilight is the Lord's Passover. The 15th day of the same month is the Feast of Unleavened Bread to the Lord…” Ex. 12:14-18, “Seven days [after Passover day] you shall eat unleavened bread… On the first… and seventh day there shall be a holy convocation. No manner of work shall be done on them…”
Ž From the context of all four Gospels and the Levitical law, it is absolutely clear that there were two Sabbath days that week when Jesus was crucified.
1. In Lu. 22:1,7-8,15-20, Mt. 26:17-54, Jn. 13, and Mark 14, (at the beginning of 14th Nissan at sunset,) Jesus ate the Passover Feast with His disciples and instituted the Lord’s Supper. That same Passover night, He was arrested in Gethsemane and put on trial. That morning of Passover day, 14th Nissan, He was brought before Pilate and crucified on the cross. He died at 3 o’clock p.m. out time; the Jewish ninth hour. This fits perfectly in the Hebrews flight from Egypt!
2. The First day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, 15th Nissan, is a High Sabbath and thus, no one was able to work. Holman’s Bible Dictionary, “The Feast of Passover was immediately followed by the holy convocation of the Feast of Unleavened Bread (Leviticus 23:1-7.) No one worked on [any of the different Sabbaths,] so a Day of Preparation, [which was also Passover Day,] was set aside to prepare for this [High Sabbath] (John 19:14.) John identified The day of Preparation as Passover Day, the day of Jesus' execution (John 19:14, John 19:31, John 19:42,) and then he placed the Last Supper before Passover, (John 13:1). However, the Synoptic Gospels dated the Last Supper on the day of Passover (Luke 22:7, Matthew 26:1-2; Mark 14:12)...”
3. Fact remains, all four Gospels agree that Jesus died on Preparation Day, not because this day was the Roman Catholic ‘Good Friday,’ but because it was Passover Day, the day before the High Sabbath of the 7-day Feast of Unleavened Bread, which began at sunset. According to the Levitical law, Jesus was slain on Passover Day as the Ultimate Lamb of God.
4. Jesus died at three in the afternoon (our time) on Passover Day.
5. He was buried before sunset on Passover Day.
6. The first High Sabbath of the 7-day Feast of Unleavened Bread began that sunset until sunset the next day.
7. Jesus was in the grave since sunset (6 p.m.) on Wednesday, when the High Sabbath of Unleavened Bread began.
8. Jesus rose from the grave some time “after” sunset on Saturday, when the Jewish new week began.
Ž It is sound Scriptural fact that the weekly Hebrew Sabbath (Saturday) was not the only Sabbath Day during the Passover feast. Jesus was not crucified on a Friday as the Roman Catholic Church and her protestant daughters teach. They twisted Scripture, the Levitical Law, historical fact, and the Hebrew timeline to justify their ungodly Good Friday/Easter Monday feast. Jesus died on Wednesday that week, not on Friday as they twisted the Scriptures to say.
Here follows the Scriptural and logic Hebrew timeline of the week when Jesus died, was buried for 72 hours, and was risen from the grave:
“YOU HAVE CORRUPTED THE BIBLE; YOU HAVE NO GROUND TO STAND ON”
The Qur’an’s Surah 5:65-75 proclaim, “If only the People of the [Bible] Book had believed [in the Muslim message] and been righteous [through following the Islamic path,] we, [not the God of the Bible,] should have blotted out their iniquities and Verse 66: “If only they had stood fast by the Law, [the Jewish Torah, or Pentateuch, the 5 books of Moses,] the Gospel, [the historical Books which describe the life of Jesus; not the epistles…] and all the revelation that was sent to them from Verse 67: “O [Muslim] Messenger! Proclaim the Message, which has been sent to you from your Lord… And Allah will defend you from men who mean mischief. For Allah guides not those who reject [Muslim] Faith.
Verse 68: “Say: ‘O People of the Book! [Christians!] You have no ground to stand on unless you stand fast by the Law, the Gospel, and all the revelation that has come to you from your Lord.’ [Next, the scene changes abruptly:] It is the revelation that comes to you [Muslims] from your Lord, [Allah,] that increases in most of them [the Christians] their obstinate rebellion and blasphemy… [against Islam.] But you do not grieve over these people without Faith [in Allah.]
Verse 69: “Those who believe in the Qur’an, those who follow the Jewish scriptures, and the Sabians and the Christians – any who believe in Allah and in the [Islamic] Last Day, and work [Islamic] righteousness, on them shall be no fear…
Verse 70: “We took the Covenant of the Children of Israel and sent them [Muslim] Messengers. Every time there came to them a Messenger with what they themselves did not desire [Qur’anic teaching] – some of these they called impostors, and some they go so far as to slay…
Verse 72: “They do blaspheme who say: ‘God is Christ the son of Mary…’ But Christ said: ‘O Children of Israel! Worship God, [Allah,] my Lord and your Lord.’ Whoever joins other gods with Allah, [Jesus is God!] Allah will forbid him the Garden, and the Fire will be his abode…
Verse 73: “They do blaspheme who say: ‘God is one of three in a trinity,’ for there is no god except one God, Allah. If they do not desist from their word of blasphemy, verily a grievous penalty will befall… them.
Verse 74: “Why do they not turn to Allah and seek his forgiveness…
Verse 75: “Christ the son of Mary was no more than a [Muslim] Messenger; many were the [Muslim] Messengers that passed away before him… See how Allah makes His Signs clear to them; yet see in what ways they are deluded away from the [Muslim] truth!
Verse 76: “Say: ‘Will you worship, besides Allah, something [not even ‘Someone,’ the Lord Jesus Christ] which has no power either to harm or benefit you? But Allah – He it is that hears and knows all things.”
“Some Muslims say they believe in the Hebrew Torah, but not in the Bible:”
Some Muslims allege, "We believe in the Torah [Old Testament Law] and the Gospel, but there are all these other books in the Bible and we do not believe that those are from God.”
These Muslims are merely following Qur’anic instruction. Surah 5.68 decrees, “[Christians] have no ground to stand on unless you stand fast by the Law, the Gospel… [But] it is the [added] revelation that comes to you from your Lord, [the True Gospel of Jesus Christ,] that increases in most of them their obstinate rebellion and blasphemy… [against Islam.]”
Muslims teach that there was no other ‘messenger’ or ‘prophet’ between Jesus in the 1st century A.D. and Mohammed in the 7th century A.D. As a result, they believe that the epistles of the New Testament are fakes. Essentially, they believe that the Qur’an is the only truth and thus remained unadulterated, while the whole Bible, (even the Torah and the Gospel-Books, but especially the epistles,) were changed, corrupted, and added not to fit into the ‘truth’ of Mohammed’s Qur’anic revelations.
When Mohammed wrote in Surah 6:115; 10:64, “The words of Allah are perfect in truth and justice; there is none who can change His words,” he was definitely not referring Muslims to the authenticity of the Bible, as Greeson and his followers allege! As we will see, it would be impossible to prove from the Qur’an that Allah is the God of the Bible, which he is not, of course! Secondly, Greeson missed the context of these verses which states, (S. 5:69,) “Those who believe in the Qur’an, those who follow the Jewish Scriptures, and the… Christians – any who believe in Allah and the Last Day, and work [Islamic] righteousness, on them shall be no fear…”
Fact remains, devout Muslims, as other all other devout religionists, always find excuses to reject Biblical Truth to show people to the ‘glorious’ Qur’an, or to their ‘glorious’ church doctrines!
MUSLIM’S SAY, “PAUL, NOT JESUS, FOUNDED CHRISTIANITY”
“Paul corrupted the [Muslim] message of Jesus and also invented continual sinning. Jesus never taught His blood-atonement, Paul thought it up. So, which gospel do you believe - the gospel of Jesus, or the gospel of Paul?”
Undoubtedly, only the Lord Jesus Christ can be the Author and Foundation of the New Testament Gospel, as this Gospel in Christ is the New Covenant in which all true believers now stand. Heb. 8:13, “By calling it a ‘New Covenant’ He made the first [Old Testament Covenant] obsolete…” The entire context and ‘unfolding’ of this New Covenant Gospel are described in the Gospel according to Matthew, Mark, Luke and John – and in the epistles of Paul, Peter, James, Jude, and John.
During the 2,000 years since Jesus Christ walked the earth, the Salvation-Message of all four Gospels, as well as the epistles, remained exactly the same. It was prophesied in the Old Testament dispensation, and was manifested by Jesus in the New Testament dispensation. The essence of Jesus’ New Covenant Gospel is as follows, “God so loved the whole world that He gave His only begotten Son, so that everyone who [personally] believes in Him, will not perish, but have eternal life,” (Jn. 3:16-17; Rom. 5:8-9.) The Lord Jesus Christ became flesh, became a mere human being, to atone for the sin of all humankind through His own broken body and blood, (Isa. 53:10-11; Mt. 20:28; Eph. 1:7.) Everyone who chooses to accept Him as his or her personal Lord and Savior, “to them He gave the power/authority to become the [born again] children of God…” (Jn. 1:12-13; Jn. 3:3-5; Gal. 3:26-29; 1 Jn. 4:7; 5:1-4.)
Contrary to the god of religion, The Lord Jesus did not merely love us from afar without making a way to deliver us from Eden’s cursed, sinful state. Jesus Himself said in Mt. 20:28, “The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”
Sadly, the Catholic Church deified Peter, Paul, and some of the other disciples to the status of godfathers and ‘popes,’ calling them “infallible apostles.” To this day, even Protestant churches disseminate the infallible-apostle dogma, (note how the King James Version of the Bible still refers to these disciples as Catholic (godfather) ‘saints’ in ‘The Gospel according to Saint Matthew…’ etc.)
However, none of Jesus’ true disciples ever laid claim to such blasphemy; they knew very well that only God Himself is infallible. Paul suffered tremendously for the truth of Jesus’ Gospel until that evil emperor Nero martyred him by beheading. As Jesus’ born again disciple, Paul waged a full-out spiritual war to keep the non-legalistic teaching of Jesus pure. He fiercely opposed false teachers and the lack of Scriptural knowledge, which infiltrated Jesus’ early assemblies. Paul neither invented nor condoned any form of moral sin either. Just like Jesus, Paul and the other disciples preached God’s judgment against unrepentant sinners and unrepentant believers alike. The writers of the New Testament epistles merely became God’s instruments to bring a better understanding of Jesus’ Gospel truth, as well as to define the form and function of the body of Christ or the ecclesia, that called-out assembly of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Continuation — Muslims For Christ
ON THIS PAGE:
Ž Muslims say, “Your Bible says Jesus was in the grave for only 1 day and 2 nights!” It’s true, but this is what Catholicism and Protestantism, not Jesus, teach. Not only Muslims, but many Christians also find so-called ‘proof’ of this sacrilegious statement in Scripture, which is the basis of their Easter Weekend!
Ž Christians say, “Unlike Western time, a Hebrew day begins at sunset and ends at sunset.” True, but it still consists of a 24-hour period. Hebrews knew that “it was evening and it was morning… and evening and morning…” (Gen. 1:5, 14,) count for 24-hour days, not 12-hour days. Yet, Catholic and Protestant church fathers pushed their Easter Weekend story into this strange twisting of God’s creation of days and nights.
Ž Some even abuse the book of Ester to ‘change’ 1 day and 2 nights (36 hours) into 3 days and 3 nights (72 hours)!
Ž Find the untwisted Scriptural truth of this debate in contextual Scripture as illustrated in the graph at the end of this discussion!
Ž “After three days and three nights,” is definitely not a “4-day account of Jesus in the grave!”
Ž The “Easter Weekend” feast is a Roman Catholic, pagan fallacy, which Protestants inherited from the church of Rome.