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Bible Questions
Letters Table of Contents | Bible Questions

Paul wrote:

I would like to know what your proof is about changing Sabbath Worship to Sunday. Where in your Bible does it say he was resurrected on Sunday. He was to be three days and three nights in the tomb. How do you count three days and three nights from Friday to Sunday.

Our Answer:

Hi Paul:

Thank you for your question. You've asked a good question.

Why Sunday?

The Old Testament Hebrew word we translate as Sabbath, is "shabbathon". A literal translation into English would be "intermission". It means to take a break, and rest. The word itself does not specify any specific day of the week.

The New Testament Greek word we translate as Sabbath, is "sabbaton". It literally means a day of repose from secular avocations, or simply a day of rest from our normal work. The word itself does not specify a day of the week.

The Bible does not specify a specific name for the day of week on which we rest. All it says is that there are six days for work, then a seventh day for rest.

Christians have chosen to have their Sabbath on Sunday to celebrate the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Was Jesus Resurrected On Sunday?

Let's look at the book of Luke. Jesus has been crucified and Joseph from Arimathea is asking Pilate if he can bury Jesus:

"this man went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. And he took it down and wrapped it in linen cloth, and laid Him in a tomb cut into rock, where no one had ever lain. It was the preparation day, and the Sabbath was about to begin." - Luke 23:52-54

New Day Starts At Sundown: One thing that makes it confusing for us is that for first century Jews a new day started at sundown. Also, they considered any part of a day, to be a day. (This is important later.)

Joseph wanted to get Jesus buried before the Sabbath day started, because Jews could not do work, such as burying someone, on the Sabbath. So Jesus was buried before sundown on Friday.

Thus Jesus was in the tomb on Friday, Saturday and Sunday -- three days. Remember, for a Jew any part of a day is considered a day. This is very different from how we now think of time.

Here's Something Important To Notice:

"Now the women who had come with Him out of Galilee followed, and saw the tomb and how His body was laid. Then they returned and prepared spices and perfumes. And on the Sabbath they rested according to the commandment." - Luke 23:55-56

The women went to the tomb when Jesus was buried on Friday. They had prepared spices and perfumes, but there was not enough time to apply them to the body before the Sabbath started. So they honored the Sabbath for one day, Friday evening until Saturday evening. Then on Sunday morning they went to the tomb.

Luke 24:1 reads - "But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb..."

This is describing when the women who discovered the empty tomb came to the tomb. The first day of the week was Sunday. So it is Sunday morning.

Passover can be on different days of the week in our modern calendar. But, in the case of this Passover, the Passover meal was Thursday evening (The Last Supper); Jesus was crucified and buried on Friday (1 day); people did nothing on Saturday (2nd day), the Sabbath; then Jesus was resurrected on Sunday (3rd day) and the tomb was found empty.

Here's Another Way To Look At It:

Concerning the Passover, there can be up to three Sabbaths associated with the Passover. Two are a part of the Feast of Tabernacles, and then there would be the normal Saturday Sabbath. The actual Passover day varies each year.

What specific day did Passover fall on when Jesus was crucified? Here is a way to tell based on the Bible:

The Jewish Day of Preparation is the name given to Friday. It is named that in order to remind Jews that they need to prepare for the weekly Sabbath on Saturday. That is why it is called "THE" preparation day, not "a" preparation day -- it is a specific day of the week, Friday.

Luke 23:54 says, "It was the preparation day, and the Sabbath was about to begin."

This specifically identifies the day of Jesus' death as Friday.

The Scripture then counts off the days: verse 56 identifies the next day as the Sabbath. Luke 24:1 then identifies the day after that as the first day of the week, Sunday -- when Jesus rose.

I hope I've answered you're question.

Yours in the Love of Christ,
Move To Assurance


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