The High Sabbath of Passover Week

September 9th, 2019


John 19:14 says, “It was the Day of Preparation for Passover Week, about the sixth hour. ‘Here is your King’, Pilate said to the Jews.”  Per other Gospels, on that day and that hour, Jesus was having His Last Supper with his disciples. Could you please shed some light and insight about this time ‘contradiction?’ 

Thank you for your question. It entails several things that most believers are not aware of.

Few Christians know that the Jewish Passover is currently a seven-day period in Israel and eight days for the Jews who live outside of Israel. At the time of Christ, the Jews had two names for the same festival; it was called the Feast of the Passover or the Feast of the Unleavened Bread.

The first month in the Jewish calendar is Nissan (also spelled “Nisan”), and it occurs during the months of March thru April in the Roman calendar. Nissan is the month in which the Passover is observed.

The 13th day (Tuesday) of Nissan is called the preparation day for the Passover. The Passover meal is eaten after 6:00 PM, which means that it is really eaten on the 14th day of Nissan. From the New Testament we know that Jesus and his disciples ate the Passover meal on a Tuesday night (Matt.26:17-19; Luke 22:13-20).

The 14th day (Wednesday) of Nissan was called the first day of the Passover and people still worked on this day. This was the day that Jesus was brought to Pilate at 6:00 AM,  (Matt.27:1-2) and was crucified the sixth hour (12:00 PM).

The 15th day (Thursday) of Nissan was the Feast of the Unleavened Bread and also known as the high Sabbath.

The Jews therefore felt, because it was the preparation day, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the sabbath day (for that sabbath day was a high day). They besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. (John 19:31)

This is not to be confused with the regular Sabbath. The high Sabbath was a holy day for the Jews and no work could be done on this day. All roads and bridges leading to Jerusalem had been cleaned the day before from garbage and the corpses of dead animals were removed. Furthermore, all graves had been whitewashed so that the pilgrims coming to Jerusalem would not be defiled. This was the reason the Jewish leadership did not want to have anyone hanging on a cross on the high Sabbath.

The 16th day (Friday) of Nissan was called “The Morrow After” the Sabbath and this was the day of the cutting of barley sheaves.

The 17th day (Saturday) of Nissan in the year Jesus was crucified was the regular Sabbath. Jesus rose from the dead sometime between 6:00 PM Saturday night and 6:00 AM on the first day of the week (Sunday morning). This timeline is consistent with Jesus’ words that he would be dead for three days and three nights:

“Then certain of the scribes and of the Pharisees answered, saying, Master, we would see a sign from thee. But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas: 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.” (Matthew 12:38-40)

Jesus was dead and in the grave at the beginning of the 15th day (Thursday) of Nissan. Using the timeline Jesus provided of three full days and nights, Thursday night was the first complete day, Friday night was the second complete day and Saturday night was the third complete day. If we correctly interpret the timeline provided by the four gospels, it is not possible for Jesus to have been crucified on Friday as commonly thought, but He was crucified and buried on Wednesday. Please refer to the Scripture citations of the Passover week timeline for the specifics of that week.

The period from the 17th day to the 20th day of Nissan was called The Lesser Festival.

The Fall of the Roman Empire (& the USA)

August 27th, 2019

Historians have given us five basic reasons historically that the magnificent Roman Empire fell, and each of these is an area of moral breakdown.  To see how the United States is following that same model, please click here.

Marianne Williamson’s Department of (Some) Children

August 21st, 2019

Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson has proposed a plan for a Department of Peace.  The plan mentions a follow-up agency called the “Department of Children and Youth” that the Department of Peace would work with, but it doesn’t go into details of that program. Williamson puts a heavy focus on early childhood intervention. Her plan seeks to “teach violence prevention and conflict resolution” in public schools, along with treating gang psychology.

I think she needs to rename the”Department of Children and Youth” to the “Department of Some Children.” She’s missing a whole segment of our population–the one million children that we intentionally kill by abortion each year.  Talk about early childhood intervention:  how about the “earliest” childhood intervention–when the child is still in the womb?  If she would adopt a pro-life position, she could start out by saving those million lives from violent abortions, and then she would have one million more kids to “teach violence prevention” to.

You can’t promote both violence prevention and (violent) abortions.

The Genealogy of Christ -Matthew 1 / Luke 3

July 18th, 2019

In Matthew chapter one it gives the ancestry of Jesus. In Luke chapter 3 it gives the ancestry again but it is different. I have been told that Luke is actually Mary’s ancestry and Matthew is Joseph’s ancestry. If this is true, then why does it say in Luke at the start of the ancestry that Joseph was the son of Heli and in Matthew it says Joseph was the son of Jacob? Are they skipping generations? We’re Joseph and Mary related? Why doesn’t it say this is the Mary’s ancestors?

Thank you for your question. You have hit upon some questions that are sort of complex to explain:

Both Matthew 1 and Luke 3 contain genealogies of Jesus. But as you noted, they are different. Luke’s genealogy starts at Adam and goes to David. Matthew’s genealogy starts at Abraham and goes to David. When the genealogies get to David, they split with David’s sons: Solomon (Joseph’s side); and, Nathan (Mary’s side). The genealogy in Matthew is for Joseph (his legal father), and the one in Luke is for Mary (who was also of the royal Davidic line). It was customary to mention the genealogy through the father even though it was clearly known that it was through Mary. Thus by both His mother and His earthly father, Jesus had a right to the throne of Israel. You can think of this as though the genealogy in Luke is Christ’s real line, while the one in Matthew is His reputed line.

As you noted, Matthew says that Joseph’s father was Jacob, but Luke says that Joseph’s father was Heli. Mary’s father was Heli, but men in ancient times often regarded their sons-in-law as their own sons. So, we can interpret that Joseph was “the son of Heli” to mean that he was his son-in-law, as the husband of his daughter Mary (as in Ruth 1:11, 12). Joseph’s name is only introduced instead of Mary’s, in conformity with the Jewish custom in such tables.

This also has to be considered in light of the fact that Matthew gives the descendants of David down the royal line (i.e. who was heir to the throne at any given time), but Luke gives the particular line to which Joseph belonged. Actually, these two passages and explanations complement each other:

Matthew 1 clearly explains that Joseph is Mary’s husband. Matthew recorded this for legal purposes, to show the Jews that Christ was the Messiah. It was the custom of the Jews to trace and record the father’s descent. The Jews simply saw Christ as legally Joseph’s Son (John 6:42).

Joseph’s lineage was also given to show that Jesus was, in fact, born of a virgin. If Joseph had been Christ’s natural father, then Christ could never have sat on the throne of David, because of a curse God placed on one of Joseph’s ancestors. This ancestor, Jechonias, is mentioned in Matthew 1:11-12. He is also referred to as Coniah in Jeremiah 22:24-30. Verse 30 states, “Thus says the LORD, Write you this man childless, a man that shall not prosper in his days: for no man of his seed shall prosper, sitting upon the throne of David, and ruling any more in Judah.” This man was so evil, that God cursed him and his descendants. Jeconiah (as his name is spelled in the Old Testament) did go on to have children (I Chronicles 3:17). But, this curse was fulfilled because none of his children went on to rule from the throne of David.

So how could Christ, a descendant of David, qualify to rule from the throne? This is how Luke 3 complements the Matthew account. Mary’s lineage did not have this curse as Joseph’s did. And Mary descended from Nathan—one of David’s sons! (see Luke 3:31). God honored Nathan, and made him the ancestor to the promised King—Jesus Christ—who would sit on David’s throne forever (Luke 1:31-33). This fulfills God’s promise of establishing David’s throne for eternity!

According to Israel’s law, if a daughter were the only heir to the father, she would inherit all his possessions, inheritance and rights—but only if she married within her tribe (Numbers 27:1-8; 36:6-8). Since Mary had no brothers who could be heirs to her father, she was able to transmit David’s royal inheritance—and the right to the throne—to her husband upon marriage. This made Joseph heir to Heli, giving him the right to David’s throne. This inheritance was then passed to Christ.

The genealogies in Matthew and Luke were both recorded to show Christ’s right to the throne. Matthew’s account showed that through Joseph’s genealogy, Christ was a legal descendant of Jeconiah (Coniah), but could not sit on and rule from the throne because of the curse. This account also proved how Christ was born of a virgin woman, because the curse would have passed onto Christ if Joseph were, in fact, His natural father. Of course, Christ was really the Son of God—begotten by the Holy Spirit!

Luke’s account showed that through Mary’s genealogy, Jesus was a descendant of Nathan—David’s son. This allowed the inheritance to pass to Joseph, who in turn passed it onto Christ. This firmly shows Christ to be completely human, yet a true descendant of David. This allows Him to claim the throne legitimately as a true human descendant of David, and as the adopted heir of the kingly line of Joseph.

I hope this helps.



Climate Change for our Kids

July 5th, 2019

Ann Carlton of UCLA argues that our U. S. government needs to take some radical measures in order to resolve the climate change problem. She recently said, “It’s not radical to ask the government to protect the health and the lives and the property of this current generation of kids.” I agree with her statement relative to both climate change and abortion. It’s not radical to ask the government to protect the lives of this current generation of kids, whether they are inside or outside of the womb. How can we protect their health and property when we don’t protect their lives?

She also said, “If you can’t have your life protected by government policy that saves the planet, then what’s the point of having a constitution?” Again, we need to have our lives protected by government policy–all of our lives, not just those deemed worthy by
a parent or a doctor.

Our Declaration refers to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness as three examples of the “unalienable rights” which the Declaration says have been given to all humans by their creator, and which governments are created to protect. How does one possess the unalienable rights to liberty and the pursuit of happiness without that of life? How does abortion not violate this concept?

Viewing the Earth

June 8th, 2019

Can the Whole Earth Be Viewed From a Mountain Top? 

Matthew 4:8 says, “Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor.” This passage implies neither a flat earth nor a mountain large enough to oversee the earth. Even on a flat earth, a high mountain would be a very poor place to observe the kingdoms of the world “in their glory.” Furthermore, if Matthew was implying that a mountain existed from which all the world was visible, then obviously, the mountain would be visible from all parts of the world. It is invalid to suggest that Matthew believed that such a mountain existed. Incidentally, the mountain in question was probably Mt. Quarantania, and it commands an incredible view of the Jordan Valley, which may be used in this passage to symbolize “all the kingdoms of the world.”

37 Things God Did at Salvation

May 16th, 2019

God did 37 specific things for you at salvation:  Click here.

The Analysis of Scripture

April 25th, 2019

Advanced Bible Doctrine – The Analysis of Scripture


Isagogics (Introduction to Philippians)

Exegesis of the Koine Greek Language

The Greek Verb

Greek Nouns, Pronouns, and Prepositions

Hermeneutics and Etymology

Categories of Doctrine

The Pastor-Teacher

Basic Bible Doctrine       The Techniques of the Christian Life       Prophecy       All Series

The Ends of the Earth

April 25th, 2019

What are The Ends of the Earth?

Psalm 135:7, Job 37:3, and Daniel 4:11 reference “the ends of the earth.” Another way of saying the “ends of the earth” is to refer to the “extremities of the earth.” In this case, as is also the case for “the four corners of the earth,” the word “earth” refers to the land mass, country, or continents, as opposed to the globe (Exodus 10:12-15). Since the word “earth” can be used as synonymous with “land,” the “ends of the earth” thus refer to the points of land most distant from some a central point.

For the Bible, this central point is the land of Israel. On a globe, a great circle passing through Jerusalem and the north and south poles very nearly cuts the Pacific Ocean in half and leaves four continental “corners” or “ends,” namely the Chukchi Peninsula of the Soviet Union (opposite the Bering Straits of Alaska), Alaska, the southeastern tip of Australia, and the Cape Horn of South America. These four geographical locations can account for the four corners of the earth. Alternatively, since there was probably a land-link between Siberia and Alaska at the time the Bible was written, the four corners of the earth could be Norway, Newfoundland, Cape Horn and the Cape of Good Hope.

The Doctrine of the Dispensations

April 5th, 2019

The Dispensations


A Summary of the Dispensations

The Age of the Gentiles

The Age of the Jews

The Age of the Church

The Age of the Kingdom

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