Keith Hunt - Three Days and Three Nights - Mat.12:40   Restitution of All Things
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Three Days and Three Nights - Mat.12:40

Dr. Samuele Bacciocchi (an SDA minister) says Jesus was not in the tomb for 72 hours. His arguments are answered

                        Part Three

Over the past 25 years I have encountered a number of arguments
trying to uphold a Friday Crucifixion and Sunday morning
Resurrection. Probably the Seventh Day Adventist organization has
written more articles and booklets than any other Christian group
to defend this popular tradition.  I maintain that they have done
so in order to uphold their teaching that ELLEN WHITE was an
infallible Prophetess - to prove her wrong on one point (there
are many other things she wrote that are contrary to Scripture
besides the Friday Crucifixion/Sunday Resurrection) would smash
the Adventists theological foundation.


Dr. Samuele Bacchiocchi has perhaps presented us with some of the
most scholastic arguments in parts of his book, that I have seen
to date. But his Adventistism did shine through loud and clear,
in the last half of his thesis, and especially in concluding with
a quote from Ellen White. A colleague of Dr. B. by the name of
Harry Lowe wrote on the same subject back in 1970.  He found
another problem with believing Jesus to have been 3 days and 3
nights in the tomb - he wrote, "To keep an unembalmed body for
over seventy-two hours, from Wednesday afternoon until after
Saturday night, was not possible in a climate where decomposition
would have set in before that."

My answer to this argument is:

1) Jesus was embalmed - see JN 19:38-40.
"ALOES....... a substance which dissolved in water and added to
myrrh, was used by the ancients in their highly perfected art of
embalming (JN 19:38-40)."  Pictorial Bible Dic. p.661.

2)  The coldness of a hillside tomb (much like a cave) even in a
hot climate as Palestine, has a preservation quality to it to
some degree.
3)  Jesus had lost all His blood through the scourging He
underwent and having a spear thrust in His side (JN 19:33,34),
hence He would not decompose as quickly as Lazarus was doing
after being dead for four days (JN 11:17). About a hundred pounds
of myrrh and aloes was used on Jesus (JN 19:39).

4)  Besides all these physical facts, we have the sure promise
and miracle power of God the Father that, "neither wilt Thou
suffer Thine Holy One to see corruption" (PS. 16:10). Jesus
was foreordained to be resurrected and not to decompose at any
time before that event.


Some have claimed that the rolling back of the stone (more like a
"boulder") over the entrance to the tomb, was so the women could
witness the Resurrection and Jesus could come out.

My answer:

1)  Jesus did not need the entrance opened as He could after His
resurrection PASS THROUGH physical matter - see JN. 20:18-20.

2)  The stone was rolled away so the women and disciples could
enter the tomb and see that Jesus was NOT THERE - see MRK.
16:1-4; LK. 24:1-12; JN. 20:1-10.

3)  The disciples on entering and seeing the angels were told
Jesus HAD RISEN (LK. 24:6; MRK. 16:6; MT. 28:6 - AORIST tense,
i.e. "has risen") already. The "aorist" is single action
done in the past.


You can use PORTIONS of the day rather than 24 hrs.  You can use
the day you are speaking on as a full day, the morrow would be
the 2nd day, part of the next day would be the 3rd day.  This can
prove INCLUSIVE counting and less than 72 hrs.

This may be true within a certain CONTEXT as Luke 13:32,33.  I
have said that the Bible does use INclusive counting AT TIMES! 
But, I have also proved the Bible uses EXclusive counting also at

The phrase "the third day" is used in Gen.1:13 to add up to 72
hours as shown by reading verses 3 - 13.  John 11:9 shows us:  12
hours in a  day, obviously meaning the daylight portion of a 24
hour day, hence also 12 hours in the night portion of a whole 24
hours day.

MATTHEW 12:40  is VERY SPECIFIC!  Jesus was being very specific.
At other times He just said He would rise the "third day" or
"after three days" or "in three days" but here in Matthew 12:40
He nailed it down to specifics. He said He would be in the heart
of the earth(the tomb) for three days AND three night - for 72


As Jesus was typified by the sheaf of the firstfruits and as this
sheaf was waved on the morning of the first day then it is
argued, Jesus rose on the morning of the first day.

My answer:  

1. The passage in Lev. says nothing about WHEN the wave sheaf was
cut.  The instruction there has to do with WHAT must be done with
the wave sheaf, before WHOM and WHEN.  
Jesus fulfilled this symbolism when He presented Himself before
the Lord(Father) of heaven on the first day (John 20:1-18).  This
wave sheaf represented the RISEN Christ and the work He had to do
on the first day before the Father, NOT when He rose.

2. There is some evidence from Jewish historical writings to show
that the wave sheaf was cut on the evening that we call Saturday
evening. The evening after sunset on Saturday.
Actually the Pharisees we know from history cut the "wave sheaf"
just after the Sabbath of the 15th of the first month, just after
the first day of the feast of Unleavened Bread had ended, and
waved it before the Lord the morning of the 16th day.  The
Sadducees, who were the official Temple priests during the time
Christ lived, DISAGREED with the Pharisees over this matter of
WHEN to cut and wave the firstfruit sheaf before the Lord. They
waved it during the morning of the first day of the week that
usually fell during the Unleavened Bread feast.
The CUTTING of the firstfruit sheaf is probably what typified the
time of Christ's RESURRECTION, and it was from what we can gather
from Jewish history, cut just shortly AFTER the Sabbath. It was
NEVER cut ON the Sabbath! 


It is argued that the third day from Wednesday could not be a
Sunday, but the third day from Friday would be a Sunday.

My answer:

The third day from Friday would be a Sunday IF and only if Luke
was using inclusive reckoning. If Luke was using exclusive
counting then MONDAY and not Sunday would be the third day from

The men talked about "all these things which had happened" (verse
14).  All these things would include the making sure the
disciples could not roll away the stone and steal the body
of Jesus. This was made impossible by the sealing of the tomb and
placing guards at the entrance for three days (see Mat.27:62-66).
This being done as we believe on a THURSDAY,
Jesus' death and burial was now as far as these chief priests and
Pharisees were concerned - sealed tight and sure. And the
disciples probably thought it was all over as well.  As they
would talk about all these things that were done to their Lord,
to cut them off from His life and body, it would have to include
the sealing and guarding the tomb on the Thursday.  The third day
from when all these things were done on a Thursday is a SUNDAY!!


As day is given first before night it is argued Jesus did not
fulfill this saying of His in a literal sense, because the night
came first as He was buried just before sunset.

My answer:

To answer this please note Gen.1:3-5.  God puts the name of light
first and the name of night second. Darkness was already on the
earth, but nevertheless as a speach pattern God says He
"called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night."
Jesus said, "are there not twelve hours in a day" but because He
did not mention the night in relation to hours, did not mean it
had less hours than the day time part of a full day.  By His
mentioning the day (or light) part before the night part did not
mean that a day had less than two egual parts of 12 hours each,
nor did it mean that we should start the day at sunrise -
counting the first hour of the day at sunrise. FOR when God in
Gen.1:5 was instructing us on when to start counting the hours of
the day He said, "the evening and the morning were the first
On keeping the Sabbath God says, "from even unto even shall you
celebrate your Sabbath"(Lev.23:32).

The phrase "three days and three nights" is a figure of speach
that conveys a length of time ONLY.  It is not designed by Bible
writers to tell you to count the hours of a day from sunrise, but
ONLY to give you a length of time - length of hours. It is a
FIGURE of speech as far as which comes first, the word day or the
word night. It is not a figure of speech as to the specific
LENGTH of time the phrase is meant to convey to the mind.

It is said that Jonah was "three days and three nights" in the
belly of the great fish. But we are not told WHEN Jonah was cast
into the sea.  He was fast asleep when the storm came and they
had to awake him. Could this have been at night when the storm
hit? Maybe and maybe not - we are not told, nor does it matter. 
The point the writer wants you to get is not WHEN - at what time
of day or night Jonah was cast into the sea and swallowed by the
fish, but HOW LONG he was in the fish's belly - three days and
three nights . Whether Jonah was swallowed at sunset, sunrise, 
10 a.m. or 3 p.m. is immaterial to the massage that the writer
wants you to understand. The length of time is what he wants you
to get - 72 hours in Jonah's case.  He is not concerned with his
use of such a phrase for you to understand WHEN to start counting
the first hour of a 24 hour day. That is not his point or
teaching he is trying to convey to you. His teaching is length of
time irregardless as to when that time begins.
In Jonah's case he was "three days and three nights" - 72 hours -
in the fish's belly from the time he was swallowed. In Jesus'
case He was "three days and three nights" in the grave from
the time He was put into the tomb.
We do not know when Jonah was swallowed by the great fish - the
Bible does not tell us. But we do know from the Scriptures of the
NT that Jesus  died between 3 and 4 p.m.(the third hour, which
last for....yes, an hour) and placed into the tomb shortly AFTER
sunset (see my later comments proving Jesus was not placed in the
tomb before sunset as many believe).
And three days and three nights later He was resurrected from the
dead to immortality and glory.

When Paul was shipwrecked at some time he said he was, "a night
and a day" in the deep (2 Cor.11:25).  He mentions night first
and day second, for what reason? To tell us he entered the sea at
the beginning of the night or sunset ? Maybe, but not
necessarily. If Paul had wanted us to know the very hour he was
cast into the sea he could have easily used such language as,
"the sixth hour" -  "the tenth hour" - or  " the second hour of
the third watch" etc.  It was not the hour that he was cast into
the sea that Paul was concerned with his readers knowing , as to
the length of time - the number of hours that he suffered
floating about in the sea. And in this case Paul chose to use the
phrase "a night and a day" as opposed to "a day and a night" to
express to the readers that he was 24 hours adrift in the sea.
As there are 12 hours to the daylight part of a day and 12 hours
to a night part of a day, what does it matter if one says "day
and night" or "night and day" - both convey the same message
in length of time.

We today have phrases that are slightly different but mean the
same thing!  We may say "it's two forty-five" or we may say "it's
fifteen till three" or even "it's quarter to three."   Some
people always use the first type of expression while other always
the second, and still others the third way of saying the same
thing.  Then some use both ways to relate the time to others
- interchanging the expressions. I am of the later - I may say, 
"it's two forty-five" to one person and say,  "it's fifteen till
three" to the next person who asks me the time.

The expressions "three days, night and day" (Esther 4:16) and
"three days and three nights" (Jonah 1:17; Mat.12:40) are
different expressions that both add up to 72 hours. They
are expressions to convey length of time NOT start of time.

Taking the expression "three days and three nights" as literal we
have this argument:

Jonah was an Israelite who preached to the people of Israel. He
was swallowed by the fish for three days and three nights, after
which he was resurrected to life again outside the belly of
the fish to go and preach to the Gentiles in the city of Nineveh.
Likewise Jesus was an Israelite who preached to the Jews of
Israel. He stopped His preaching to Israel on Thursday
of Passion week, was put to death on Friday and resurrected
Sunday morning. The reasoning continues like this. As Jonah did
not preach for three days and three nights and then continued his
preaching to Gentiles, so Jesus did not preach from Thursday to
Sunday - three days and three nights - then continued to preach
to Gentiles.

My answer:

This argument for explaining the "three days and three nights" of
Mat.12:40 is made invalid for the following reasons:

1. Although Jonah was an Israelite there is absolutely NOTHING in
the book of Jonah to show that he ever preached ONE WORD to the
peoples of Israel. Jonah was called to go and preach to the
Gentile people of the city of Nineveh - to no other people but
those dwelling in the town of Nineveh!!

2. Jesus preached to Israelites and some Gentiles before His
death. After His resurrection we see Him appearing to His
disciples - talking to them - preaching to them - but there is
not one word about Him preaching or talking to any Gentile.

3. Not only can we not find any word about Jesus preaching to
Gentiles after His resur- rection, but the disciples themselves
did not preach the Gospel to the Gentiles until a number
of years after the New Testament Church was started. This can be
seen by reading Acts chapter one to chapter eleven, verse

The Bible is the most wonderful book ever written. One of its
many wonders is that you can take all your life time reading and
studying its pages, and still you will not have found all its
various little truths hidden here and there.  It is of course THE
WORD of the Eternal God of the universe. That word tells us to
study, to prove all things, to love the truth, to hunger and
thirst after righteousness, to grow in knowledge, to be willing
to be humble and to be willing to to corrected. All this is a
life long process, to the very day we fall asleep in death.

Often, we come across more truth somewhat accidentlyin a sense,
and the sense I mean is that we may be studying a certain subject
and find a truth we were not expecting or looking for. I have
experienced that a number of times over my 55 years of life to
date (editing this study in 1998). 
The most recent time to experience this blessing was this past
year of 1998. I was doing a full and indepth study on how the NT
uses the word "evening."  I had never undertaken such a study 
before, not so complete from the NT. I was looking up every place
in the NT where the word "evening" was used and letting the
Scriptures interpret themsleves as to how it it used by that
section of the Bible. It was a rewarding study indeed. I have
that study in my PC and can send it to anyone who requests via

Briefly, the study shows a four way use of this word. 1) Evening
= sunset.  2) Evening = period of time from after 6 p.m. or as
the NT puts it, from the 12th hour on.  3) Evening = a time
after sunset on into an amount of time (not specified in any
specific way) covered by darkness.  4) Evening, can be part of
the day that preceeds it.
As I was studying this topic concerning "evening" I was also
studying the last 24 hours of the life and death of Jesus.  I
came across a verse that hit me like a ton of bricks.  Actually
two of the Gospel writers bring it out (Matthew and Mark).  In
Matthew the verse is 57 of chapter 27.
In Mark we find it in chapter 15 verse 42.

These two men tell us very plainly that Joseph of Arimathaea did
not come to Pilate UNTIL EVENING!  Putting aside all ideas of men
or  traditions of men and societies and only using the NT to
interpret the use of the word "evening" for us, Joseph did not
come to Pilate until at least 6 p.m. As the Passover was in the
Spring of the year (our late March or April), sunset in
Jerusalem, Palestine, at that time would also be around 6 p.m. 
When we understand that the word "even" or "evening" can be
connected with the previous daylight portion of the day just
preceeding that evening, we can understand why Mark says it was
preparation before Sabbath (chapter 15 verse 42). 
When we understand that no Gospel writer tells us the exact time,
down to the minute, when Jesus died, and that from what is given
it was sometime between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m.  
When we understand that although the Jewish leaders wanted the
three men dead before the Sabbath came, they certainly had no
intentions to remove and bury Jesus themsleves. 
When we understand that those Jewish leaders would have been too
busy with the utter confusion that would have errupted in the
Temple when the curtain that devided off the "most holy place"
was split assunder, to worry about who would take down the body
and this Christ and bury it.
When we understand that none of the physical brothers and sisters
of Christ (half brothers and sisters that is) came to take care
of the body of Jesus. 
When we see and understand that not even one of the twelve
disciples came to take down the body of their leader.  
When we understand that everyone close to Christ was thinking
that someone else but themsleves was surely looking after the job
of taking Jesus down from the cross and burying Him somewhere. 
When we understand all this, then we can see why it took a few
hours from Christ's death for Joseph to finally realize NOBODY
was going to remove Jesus and bury Him.  And by the time he
realized this it was "even." The sun had set. He made a fast move
to Pilate and begged for the body of Christ.  
How long would it have taken to then go and take Christ down from
the stake, use the 100 pounds or so of aloes that Nicodemus
brought (as John tells us),  wrap the body and take it to
the tomb?  We know the tomb was close at hand, as that is told
us.  All of this probably would have taken at least an hour and a
half, if not two hours.

It is now dark, oh, yes, maybe still could be classified as
"evening" by the way the NT uses the word.  Maybe could use the
word "even" as belonging to the previous day, as the Bible
does use that concept from time to time (as I show in my study
article on the word "evening"), yet, as used in the Bible, and in
the NT, it is now the evening of the Sabbath, it is now the
beginning of the Sabbath of the 15th day of the first month - the
first day and first Sabbath of the feast of Unleavened Bread.
Jesus was put in the tomb at the beginning, during the first few
hours of the Sabbath of the 15th day of Nisan.  The women (a few
of them) we are told watched as Joseph and Nicodemus performed
all this and they saw where they laid Him. A job had to be done,
this was an ox in the ditch situation, no matter the work
involved, and the Sabbath having come, the task of putting Jesus
to rest in the tomb in the correct Jewish manner had to be

Now, there is one verse left to explain.  On the surface it would
be thought that this verse would clealy demolish all I have said
above. But, to the contrary, when we understand the Greek tense
used for the critical words in this verse, it becomes another
huge proof to what I have stated.  The verse is Luke 23:54. 
It would seem to say (according to the KJV) that the Sabbath
"drew on" - was yet to arrive, and Joseph had already laid Jesus
in the tomb.
Someone whose native tongue was Greek, would have had little
trouble understanding what Luke REALLY said. The word "drew on"
as in the KJV, is in the Greek, in the IMPERFECT tense, not the
FUTURE tense, but the IMPERFECT tense.  What does the imperfect
tense signify?
The book "Essentials of New Testament Greek" by Ray Summers,
lesson 13, pages 55,56 has this to say: 
".......The imperfect tense indicates CONTINUOUS action in PAST
time. Contrast 'I am loosing' (present) with 'I was loosing'
(imperfect) and the significance is clear......Always it
represents CONTINUOUS action in PAST time.......The 'repeated' or
'iterative' imperfect shows action repeated in past time. It
would be represented by a broken line (- - - - - ) rather than a
continous line (______) which would represent the descriptive

Ah, now we can understand what Luke really was saying in chapter
23:54.  Talking about all the things Joseph and Nicodemus had
done and finished, including the placing of Christ in the
tomb, the Sabbath HAD COME in the past, at a past point of time
and did continue.  It was a kind of period of time that could be
understood as belonging to the previous day, hence still
preparation for the Sabbath (especially under the ox in the ditch
situation), yet was also the time that belonged to the Sabbath,
hence the Sabbath HAD come and was continuing by the time Jesus
was placed in the tomb.
It may sound a little odd and a little contradictory, but when we
look at how the word "evening" was used in the NT and when we see
the truth of the specific Greek tense that Luke chose (under
inspiration) in verse 54, we are left with no other conclusion
but to realize the NT Scriptures tell us that Jesus was not
placed in the tomb until AFTER the "evening" had come, and AFTER
the Sabbath had already arrived.

Three days and three nights later from a few hours into the
evening of the annual Sabbath of the 15th of Nisan, a Wednesday
evening, brings us to a few hours after the weekly Sabbath,
or Saturday evening, for the RESURRECTION of Christ !  Close to
when the Wave Sheaf was cut as the Sadducees (priests of the
Temple) taught and observed (the first of the firstfruits), ready
to be presented to the Lord the next morning, a Sunday morning. 
So the whole typology of the Passover lamb and Wave sheaf was
completely fulfilled in Christ, even to the typology of Jonah
being three days and three nights in in the whales belly, was
fulfilled by Jesus being three days and three nights in the tomb.

Perhaps the number one reason that has been put forth over the
centuries, for keeping Sunday as the Sabbath, has been the
teaching that Jesus was resurrected the morning of the first day
of the week. This teaching is not only unscriptural but contrary
to a number of Historical sorces.

The Didascalia, an early Christian work which is preserved in
Syriac, supports a Wednesday crucifiction day. In this work the
apostles are quoted as saying that it was on Tuesday evening that
they ate the Passover with Jesus, and on Wednesday that He was
taken captive and held in custody in the house of Caiaphas.

Epiphanius, a post-Nicene writer, gives Tuesday evening as the
Last Supper (A.Gilmore, "Date and Signiticance of the Last
Supper," Scottish Journal of Theology, Sept. 1961, pp. 256-259,
264 - 268).

Victorinus of Pettau, worked out a chronology that arrives at the
conclusion that Jesus was arrested on a Wednesday. Loc.cit.

There is a certain amount of evidence found in the writings of
the Early Church Fathers for the Last Supper having taken place
on the 13th of Nisan, i.e., Tuesday evening. Loc.cit.
The Dead Sea Scrolls.  Writing in "Eternity" magazine, its
editor, Donald Grey Barnhouse cited evidence from the scrolls
which would place the Last Supper on Tuesday. He also quoted from
a Roman Catholic journal published in France that "an ancient
Christian tradition, attested to by the Didascalia Apostolorum as
well as by Epiphanius and Victorinus of Pettau (died 304 A. D.)
gives Tuesday evening as the date of the Last Supper and
prescribes a fast for Wednesday to commemorate the capture of
Christ" (Eternity, June, 1958).

Though strongly holding to a Friday crucifixion, The Catholic
Encyclopedia says that not all scholars have believed this way.
Epiphanius, Lactantius, Wescott, Cassiodorus and Gregory of Tours
are mentioned as rejecting Friday as the day of the crucificxion 
(Vol.8, p. 378, art. "Jesus Christ.").

The Companion Bible, published by Oxford University Press, in its
Appendix 156 explains that Christ was crucified on Wednesday.

Dake's Annotated Reference Bible.  Finis Dake has said on his
note on Matthew 12:40: " Christ was dead for three full days and
for three full nights. He was put in the grave Wednesday just
before sunset and was resurrected at the end of Saturday at
sunset.... No statement says that He was buried Friday at sunset.
This would make him in the grave only one day and one night,
proving his own words untrue" (p 13).

The error in believing Jesus was crucified on a Friday has
largely come about by thinking that the Sabbath that followed
"the preparation" of Mt.27:62 and Jn. 19:31 was the weekly
7th day Sabbath instead of the first Passover Sabbath.
The Wycliffe Bible Commentary says, " The day after the
preparation (ASV). Usually explained as Saturday...... However,
this preparation day was the day before the Passover Feast
day (John 19:14,31), which feast may have occurred that year on
Wednesday night. Perhaps this accounts for Matthew's not using
the term 'Sabbath' here, lest it be confused with Saturday.
According to this view, the entombment lasted a full seventy-two
hours, from sundown Wednesday to sundown Saturday. Such a view
gives more reasonable treatment to Mt.12:40. It also explains
'after three days' and 'on the third day' in a way that does
least violence to either" (page 984).

The answer is all resolved when it is understood that there were
TWO SABBATHS in the last week of our Savior's physical life.

Ferrar Fenton (a wealthy Englishman, for about 50 years avoided
reading the BibIe in any but the original languages, that his own
translation of the Bible might not be influenced by other
translations), renders the first part of Mt.28:1 as, " After the
SabbathS.." He states in his foot note that the Greek original is
in the PLURAL.
Fenton translates Lk.24:1 as," But at day-break upon the first
day following the Sabbaths, they proceeded to the tomb......"   
Again in Jn.20:1, " Now on the first day following the
SABBATHS...... " And his footnote says,that this is literally as
the Greek reads.

The Greek is very significant in LK.23:54 - 56.  In verse 54 Luke
was inspired to write, "A preparation day, and A Sabbath " but in
verse 56 the definite article "the" is used with "Sabbath"
showing that this Sabbath was the weekly Sabbath, thus making a
difference between the two Sabbaths, and showing there was indeed
TWO Sabbath days during  that Passover week, leading up to the
first day or Sunday.

Jesus ate the Passover with His desciples on a Tuesday evening.
He was arrested during that night and crucified during the
daytime of Wednesday. At between 3 and 4 p.m. in the after-
noon (the third hour) He died.  His burial was shortly after
sunset. At sunset the high day Sabbath for the feast of
Unleavened Bread began. It lasted till sunset the next day -
This was ONE night and ONE day in the tomb.  Friday, a work day
before the weekly Sabbath, followed. Now we have TWO nights and
TWO days that Jesus lay in the grave. The night of the weekly
Sabbath was the THIRD night, and the daylight part of that
Saturday was the THIRD day. After a full 3 days and 3 nights in
the tomb, the heart of the earth - Jesus rose from the dead, just
after sunset - as the wave sheaf was cut (being the first of the
firstfruits) exactly 72 hours after being put into the tomb. It
was a first day of the week resurrection but not on a Sunday

LUKE and MARK give us the final proof.  Luke tells us, "And the
women also, which came with him from Galilee, followed after, and
beheld the sepulchre, and how his body was laid.
And they returned, and prepared spices and ointments; and rested
the Sabbath day according to the commandment" (Luke 23:55-56).
They. had and prepared these spices BEFORE the Sabbath. But
notice what Mark tells us, "And when the Sabbath was past, Mary
Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought
spices, that they might come and anoint him"(Mark 16:1). They
bought the spices AFTER the Sabbath was past!
Putting the two Gospel accounts together, it would have been
impossible for them to purchase the spices after the Sabbath, and
then to prepare them before the Sabbath, and rest on the same
Sabbath. The conclusion is inescapable. There were two Sabbaths
that week, and when properly harmonized, everything fits in

A note on Mark 16:9.  Someone is bound to say that this verse
plainly says that Jesus rose on the morning (sunrise) of the
first day of the week.
In the Greek the phrase"early the first day of the week" can be
grammatically connected either with the words "having risen" or
with the words "he appeared first to Mary Magdalene." The
Expositor's Greek Testament says the phrase "early the first day
of the week" may be either "connected with (having risen),
indicating the time of the resurrection, or with (appeared),
indicating the time of the first appearance."
We have seen that it could not refer to the time of the
resurrection Mark 16:9 should have been translated, "Now having
risen, early the first day of the week he appeared first to Mary
It is rendered this way in the Montgomery translation.


First written 1986
Edited and revised July 1998

All articles and studies by Keith Hunt may be copied, published,
e-mailed, and distributed as led by the Holy Spirit. Mr. Hunt
trusts nothing will be changed without his consent.

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