Exploding the Myth of "Good Friday"

Matthew 27:63 "...Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again"

Mark 8:31 "And he began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed. and after three days rise again."

I Corinthians 15:4 "And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:..."

Matthew 12:40 "For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth."

Over and over again we are reminded that our LORD was going to be killed and then be in the grave three days and three nights. Therefore it is impossible for Jesus to have been crucified on Friday. There is just no way for there to be 3 days and 3 nights in between Friday and Sunday morning. Unbelievers, traditionalists and the unsuspecting have for many years celebrated the myth of "Good Friday."

  1. Understand the way the Jewish day is reckoned.
    1. Genesis 1:5 - Sundown to Sundown. (Or we might say, Moonrise to Moonrise) Or approximately 18:00 (6 PM) to 18:00 the next day.
      Matthew 28:1 – "In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first part of the week came Mary Magdalene ..."
    2. Note also Mark 16:2, Luke 24:1 and John 20:1 Also, note that Jesus was already gone from the tomb. Before dawn the tomb was empty.
    3. Chronology of the events:
      1. Mark 11:1-11 - Palm Sunday
      2. Mark 11:12-19 - Monday
      3. Mark 11:20-14:12-17 -Tuesday
    4. Then starting about 6:00pm (1800) Tuesday evening or the beginning of Wednesday for the Jew.
      1. Luke 22:14-20 - From Bethany to Jerusalem and the Last Supper
      2. Matthew 26:36 - To Gethsemane.
      3. Matthew 26:57 - To the Palace of the High Priest, Caiaphas.
      4. Luke 23:1 - To Pilate's Judgment Hall.
      5. Luke 23:7 - To Herod.
      6. Luke 23:11 - Back to Pilate. It is now morning on Wednesday.
      7. Luke 23:33 - Pilate sentences Jesus to the Cross.
      8. Luke 23:33 - Mark 15:24,25 - Jesus is nailed to the Cross ("third hour" =0900)
      9. Mark 15:33 - The "sixth hour." Darkness falls for three hours.
      10. Mark 15:34 - 38 - Jesus dies at the "ninth hour."
      11. Mark 15:42-47 - Jesus is laid in the tomb before 18:00 or the beginning of Thursday (an high day, a special Sabbath day, John 19:31) for the Jew
  2. Bible definitions of the word "day."
    1. Genesis 1:4,5,8,13,19, and 23.
    2. Night (evening) and day (morning). John 11:9-Two 12 hour periods. The light and dark periods of the 24 hour day. Sec also Exodus 13:21
  3. Why the Error?
    1. Probably because of a misunderstanding of the word "sabbath". Sabbatarians think that everytime the word "sabbath" is mentioned in the Bible it refer to Saturday.
      1. Luke 23:54 "And that day was the preparation, and the sabbath drew on."
      2. Mark 15:42 "And now when the even was come, because it was the preparation, that is, the day before the sabbath,..."
    2. However, we find many "sabbath days" in the Scriptures
      1. Seven "sabbaths" in Leviticus 23 alone.
      2. A "sabbath" could fall on any day of the week.
      3. John 19:14,31 – The day following Jesus’ Crucifixion was the Passover Sabbath
        1. It was the 14th of Nisan – Lev. 23:5
        2. The next day, the 15th of Nisan, was the Feast of Unleavened Bread – Lev 23:6
        3. The next day, the 16th of Nisa, was the Saturday Sabbath. – Lev. 23:3
        4. In this particular year, these three sabbaths occurred on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
    3. The Passover date was always the 14th day of the first month (Nisan). However, the month would not always start on the same day of the week each year. "God’s calendar is a lunar calendar based upon the phases of the moon rather than the earth’s rotation around the sun. Each month started with a new moon, reaching a full moon in the midst of the cycle. The Passover always falls on a full moon – the first full moon of spring … The almond tree blooms at the end of winter with a most noticeable flowering of white blossoms… The next full moon was the first feast, the Passover Feast.” (Zola Levitt)
    4. Jesus became our Passover Lamb. Exodus 12:3-10 He was crucified on the day before the Passover Sabbath.
    5. Jesus presented Himself to the Nation of Israel on Sunday. On Wednesday He was killed. 4 days. Then He was placed in the tomb before the Passover Sabbath began with the rising of the full moon.
    6. Our
      6:00 am
      Wednesday
      Thursday
      Friday
      Saturday
      Sunday
      Day


      6:00 pm
      Jesus put in the grave before 6:00 pm In the Tomb
      First day.
      Passover ends.
      In the Tomb
      2nd day. Feast of Unleavened Bread continues.
      In the Tomb.
      3rd day. Jewish Saturday
      In the morning when they arrived, He was Risen!
      Night


      6:00 am
      Thursday begins. In the tomb.
      First night
      Passover begins
      In the Tomb.
      2nd night.
      Feast of Unleavened Bread begins.
      In the Tomb.
      3rd night.
      Jewish Saturday begins
      Jewish Sunday begins. Jesus rose from the tomb sometime after 6:00 pm.  

  4. What Spiritual Lessons may we learn from this?
    1. Ephesians 2:15 – The Sabbaths were a part of the ceremonial Law and Jesus fulfilled all of the Requirements of the Law. See also Colossians 2:14-15.
    2. Galatians 2:19 - We who are in Jesus Christ are dead to the law.
    3. Galatians 2:16, 17 – We are not to turn back to keeping the Law for Salvation.
    4. Ephesians 2:8-9 Many are trying to achieve a right relationship with God through keeping the Sabbath Day and other religious trappings. What legalistic nonsense! We are saved by grace not by the works of the Law.

This document may be download in PDF format good-friday-myth.pdf

Prepared by Dr. Robert E. Bliss
Old Paths Baptist Ministry

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