The annual commemoration of the greatest and most heroic feat in history is fast approaching. Most folks call it "Easter".
As such, I'd like to share something about that holiest of weeks you might not know - beginning with this startling absolute:
"Good Friday" doesn't really exist.
Now I know that one of two things likely just occurred. Either this article was closed or passed over as utter nonsense, or I've stirred curiosity to the point that you are willing to grant me enough grace to explain my comment. Since you seem to fall into this 2nd demographic (thank you, BTW), please indulge me the following:
It's really all in the math - and math never lies.
Jesus told His disciples that He would be in the grave three days and three nights (3 & 3) - and all the Gospels confirm that this indeed was the case.
So track with me:
a. We know from scripture that Jesus was crucified at 9am and died at 3pm - at which point the temple veil was rent at the cry of "It is Finished!".
b. We know that Nicodemus and Joseph performed a hurried burial of His body so that He would not be on the cross when the Sabbath began. In Hebrew tradition, this would begin at nightfall - which means that by 6pm (or so) The Lord's body was in the grave.
c. We also know that Jesus rose from the grave on the first day of the week, before dawn on the day that we now know as Sunday.
Quick summation: On the day that our Lord was crucified, He was out of His body by 3pm - and His Body was in the grave by sundown...
And here is where simple math reveals the lie...
There is NO WAY Friday Sundown to Sunday Sunrise can (or ever will) equate to 3 days and 3 nights. It doesn't come close to adding up, and there's no way to stretch time in order to make it so. Either scripture is correct or it is false - but it cannot be both.
So if Jesus said that He would be in the grave for a certain integer of time (and He did), and if scripture would later attest that this was so (and it does) - then something is WAY OFF in the tradition that was forged by our church fathers over the centuries that followed. History is not always a pretty thing, and church history is no exception.
Here is the sad truth, and it is easily confirmed through many sources:
Church leaders (of the 4th century) had such well-documented vitriol toward Jews that parishioners were literally forbidden to adopt any tradition derived from Jewish sources. It was under this paradigm that Passover week was "broomed" in favor of "Good Friday" and "Easter". A new church tradition (replacement theology) was formulated as though cut out of whole cloth. It is a testament to the power of the "bully pulpit" - that so many would go for so long without questioning the simple math (or lack thereof) involved.
So here is where this all leads, and I urge you to thoroughly research the matter in order to equip yourself with the truth of this Holy Week:
"Good Friday" never existed. Instead, we should be acknowledging "Good Wednesday" - since (according to reliable Hebraic sources) the week of our Savior's great atoning sacrifice actually breaks-down as follows:
1. Tuesday evening at Sundown - The Last Supper in the Upper Room.
2. Tuesday night - Judas betrays Jesus and our Lord is arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane.
3. Wednesday Morning - After a grueling night of beatings and trials, Pilot condemns The Lord to die by crucifixion. At 9am The Lord is crucified.
4. Wednesday Afternoon - The Lord completes His work at 3pm and dies.
5. Wednesday Evening - Sundown - The Lord's body is in the tomb. This begins NIGHT #1. The once-yearly SPECIAL SABBATH (which is a part of Passover week since antiquity) begins.
6. Thursday - Special Passover Sabbath - DAY #1
7. Thursday Evening - Special Sabbath ends at Sundown - NIGHT #2 begins.
8. Friday - DAY #2
9. Friday Evening - The normal weekly Sabbath begins at sundown (the 2nd Sabbath of this holy week) - NIGHT #3 begins.
10. Saturday - Weekly Sabbath - DAY #3
11. Saturday Sundown - DAY #1 of the new week begins as The Lord's 3rd day in the tomb concludes. Jesus Rises from The grave. Praise The Lord!
Bear in mind that the Hebrew day (from the time of creation) has always begun on the evening before the day in question. So when scripture accurately reports that The Lord was raised on the first day, it is technically speaking of Saturday evening - NOT what we would call Sunday morning.
All Gospels are clear that the women who went to attend to Yeshua's body found that the grave was already open and empty when they arrived. John went so far as to state that Mary went to do this work while it was still dark - and found that it was empty.
Thus I have been directed to celebrate "Good Wednesday" and "Resurrection Sunday" as a part of Passover week, commemorating the final hours of our Lord's horrific exertions and His glorious triumph. The Lord gave up His Spirit at the exact hour when the sacrificial lamb was to be slain for the sins of the Nation (3pm by tradition) - thus making atonement for once, for all, and for all eternity.
I am grateful to our Holy Father and to our Lord and Savior Jesus for the unspeakable wonder of Passover week and (what I call) Resurrection Sunday. Whatever you call it, I hope you all have a glorious week in remembrance of all that Jesus did for His little ones in making this atoning sacrifice for every human soul. By His blood we are saved, and by His stripes we are healed.
Hallelujah to Lamb of God - slain for the sins of the world.
Your brother and servant in Christ Jesus our Lord,
Mark Scott Grimmett