Keith Hunt - Passover Study #12 Restitution of All Things

                    Part Eight

            NT Proof the Passover lambs
          were being slain at the Beginning
                    of the 14th

     This study is going to get quite technical. I will try to
make it as clear and as plain as I can.

     Turn to Mark 14:12. The Greek in Berry's Interlinear reads:
"And on the first day of unleavened, when the passover they
killed........"  In our last study we saw all about the phrase
"And on the first of unleavened."  This time I want to focus on
the phrase "when the passover they killed"  and especially the
words "they killed."  Actually in the Greek it is only ONE word
for "they killed" - it is ETHUON.
     This word is most revealing when we look at the Greek TENSE!

     As Fred Coulter in his book THE CHRISTIAN PASSOVER points
out(page 197), "The verb ethuon reflects the following case and
action: 3rd person plural - they; imperfect - meaning an action
not yet completed but taking place at that very moment - were
killing; active indicative - being done personally at the moment
by the subject - they. A literal translation of the Greek would


     "Who were 'they'?  The word 'they' in this verse can only
refer to those who were killing the Passover lambs at that moment
on the 14th.........who were killing the Passover lambs at the
houses and inns........The lambs were being killed at the
beginning of the 14th........This was the exact moment that Jesus
sent His disciples into Jerusalem - '.....when they were killing
the Passover.....'

     "Properly translated, this verse in the Gospel of Mark has
profound meaning! When Mark's account is combined with Luke's
account, the impact is even greater! Here are Mark 14:12 and Luke
22:7 combined in a literal translation: ' On the first day of the
unleaveneds, in which it was obligatory for the Passover to be
killed, when they were killing the Passover, His disciples asked
Him, Where do You desire that we should go and prepare the
Passover that You may eat?' "

End quote.

     Back to the word "Ethuon" - they killed.  The ANALYTICAL
GREEK LEXICON, page 116 gives the sense as: "3 person, plural,
IMPERFECT, active.
     The same Lexicon under section 39 THE USE OF THE TENSES says
this about the "imperfect" tense: "The imperfect expresses a

Summers, page 55, we read this:  "The imperfect tense indicates
continuous action in past time. Contrast 'I am loosing' (present)
with 'I was loosing' (imperfect) and the significance is clear.
     There are several varieties of expression in the imperfect.
repeated or iterative imperfect shows action repeated in past
time. It would be represented by a broken line (------) rather
than a continuous line (_____) which would represent the
descriptive imperfect.  A good ILLUSTRATION is found in Acts 1:6, 
' They WERE ASKING HIM, Lord, art thou at this time restoring the
kingdom to Israel? '   This could well be translated ' They kept
on asking him.'  The context indicates that the same question was
asked Jesus frequently by the disciples..........."

     Now that reading was taken from Lesson 13 and the section

     Turning to the ANALYTICAL GREEK LEXICON for the tense of the
Geek word used in Acts 1:6 (eperootoon - number 1905 in
Strong's), we find this on page 153, " 3 person, plural,
imperfect, active. "

     The Greek Tense for BOTH Acts 1:6 "asked" and Mark 14:12
"they killed" IS THE EXACT SAME!!

     Hang on to that, hold it firm. BOTH are in the same Greek
tense - the third person, plural, imperfect, active.

     The disciples in THE PAST from when Luke was writing the
book of Acts, did not just ask Jesus ONCE about if the time was
now that the kingdom would be restored to Israel, but they asked
Him REPEATEDLY - action many times on a continuous basis in
past time. So Luke really recorded that the disciples WERE ASKING

     Now let's put ourselves in Mark's shoes. He knew the truth.
He knew what exactly was going on when the disciples at the very
beginning of the 14th day, the Passover day, the day they were
obliged to sacrifice the Passover lambs. He knew the truth about
groups of people being able to get together and sacrifice the
Passover lambs themselves, not having to have priests in the
Temple or anywhere, doing it for them. He knew the Passover lambs
were to be slain and eaten that NIGHT of the 14th, the BEGINNING
of the 14th, at DUSK, between the two evenings, over a period of
about 1 HOUR or slightly more.
     He knew the disciples were coming to Jesus quite concerned
that it was NOW the beginning of the 14th, and Jesus had not TOLD
     He knew it was the time of day as they came to Jesus, when
the Passover lambs were beginning to be slain among the various
groups within the city limits of Jerusalem. It would be a
REPEATED CONTINUOUS ACTION for an hour or more. One group would
slay their lamb at the stroke of sunset, another group would slay
their lamb a few seconds later, another group a few minutes
later, and still others later, and so on until DUSK was over, and
the NIGHT had come in its full moon blackness.
     Obviously the two disciples Jesus sent to prepare the
Passover for themselves(the 13 of them), it would be towards the
END of the two evenings, or dusk, when they would arrive at the
place Jesus said was waiting and ready for them.
     In that context, as Mark knew it, he wrote: "And the first
day of the unleaveneds, when they WERE REPEATEDLY(and
continuously)  KILLING(imperfect active tense)  THE PASSOVER, 
His disciples said unto Him, Where will you that we go and
prepare that you may eat the Passover?"

     Now we need to look at Luke 22:7 and the phrase "must be
killed."  First I will give it as it is in the Greek/English
Interlinear by Berry.  "And came the day of unleavened in
which was needful to be killed the passover."
     The word "needful" (edei in Greek) means "mandatory,
compulsory, obligatory, one must, or has to, is required to,
compulsion of duty and compulsion of law" (Arndt and Gingrich, A
Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament).
     The phrase "to be killed" is the Greek word "Thuesthai" and
the TENSE from the ANALYTICAL GREEK LEXICON, page 197, is:
     The ending to this word is ESTHAI, please keep that in mind. 
Now once more we shall go to the book ESSENTIALS OF NEW TESTAMENT
GREEK by Summers. Lesson 3 under, Verbs: Present Active
Indicative, we learn this about the present tense: "The
present tense indicates progressive action at the present time -
' he is loosing.'  "   
     That is the BASIC meaning of the Present tense. There can be
more to it as we learn from The Analytical Greek Lexicon. Under
section 29 (The Use of the Tenses) we read: "The use of the
present and future tenses is sufficiently explained by their
names. But the present is sometimes used as a lively expression
of a past action as.....John 9:13......"
     In John 9:13 Berry translates it as: "They bring him to the
Pharisees...."  The word for "they bring"(Agousi) is Present,
Indicative, Active (Analytical Greek Lex. page 5).  Here
we have a Present tense used as a lively expression of a past
action - "They bring (as if present time but really an action of
the past) him to the Pharisees."
     John was writing some years AFTER the event. He is relating
it to us, and he takes himself back in time as if he was writing
it at the PRESENT time of it happening. Writing as if he was
standing there as a reporter writing it down as it happened , in
the present time of it happening. So then he uses a PRESENT tense
- " And presently they are bringing him to the Pharisees, the one
who was once blind."

     Back to our phrase "to be killed" or "be killed" in Luke
22:7.  We have seen the basic use of the Present tense. This
Greek is also PASSIVE.  From Lesson 6 by Summers, page 35, we
learn: "......Present active...' I am loosing ' ; present
passive...' I am being loosed. '  Thus the present passive
pictures continued action received by the subject in the present
     This Greek word is also INFINITIVE.  Lesson 12, page 51, 52,
by Summers  we read: ".......(4) Present Infinitive: The
infinitive is a verbal noun. This means that it partakes of the
nature of a verb and the nature of a noun in its function....The
Present middle and passive infinitive ending is - esthai.  Thus
the middle and passive infinitives will be Luesthai, Blepesthai,
ginoskesthai, etc..........The passive voice indicates that the
subject is being acted upon........' I am beginning to be loosed
by the man.' ........."

     Oh, I've probably lost most of you, but I will try to put it
all together for you in simple language.

     The subject of  the Greek word "to be killed" is the
Passover, of Luke 22:7.  The subject is being acted upon. 
Something is being done to it.  The word "be killed" or "to
be killed" is a verbal noun. We know a verb is a doing word, an
action word. We have ACTION here upon the SUBJECT, which is the
Passover.  This action is also in the PRESENT tense - a
progressive action in the present time.  But was this action
going on while Luke was writing these words many years AFTER the
actual day he was writing about?  No, of course not! 

     We will remember what we also learned. Present tense can
also be used, is sometimes used as a lively expression of a PAST
action as in John 9:13.

     Luke puts himself at the scene of the day, as if he was
standing there, reporting it WHILE IT HAPPENED!  He did not
choose to do as Mark did, use the IMPERFECT TENSE,  report about
a recurrent action in past time. Luke takes himself back as if
there at the time all this was happening and gives it to us in
the PRESENT PROGRESSIVE action as the subject, the Passover was

     So to try to put all this into English for you, it would be
like this:  "And came the day of unleavened in which it was
obligatory(mandatory, compulsory) TO BE BEGINNING AT THE PRESENT

     Luke as if standing there right on the spot, right at the
beginning of the 14th day, when it had arrived, and the time had
come to START AND CONTINUE KILLING the Passover lambs until it
was over, until DUSK had turned into NIGHT, when "between the
two evenings" had ended and it was now full moon blackness. He
writes as IF IN THE PRESENT continuous action upon the
subject(the Passover) was taking place as he was writing it all

     Oh, the tools of written language, vast and intricate,
involved and sophisticated they can be at times. Yet the
wonderful truth they hold is for us to find and search out as
the pearl of great price. And as the sure "word of prophecy
whereunto you do well to take heed, as unto a light that shines
in a dark place......."(2 Pet.1:19).
     Ah, how it all fits so nicely and so perfectly together,
when we forget about Jewish Pharisaical traditions and customs.
Let them alone. Let them follow their late 14th Passover, going
on into the 15th Sabbath day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
Let them alone. By using the Bible ONLY we see that between the
two evenings was DUSK time, the beginning of the new day, from
sunset to the black of night. We see that the lambs in Exodus 12
were slain at the BEGINNING of the 14th. They were up most of the
night of that 14th day. They moved out of Goshen with their herds
and cattle(that do not walk very fast), spoiling the Egyptians
along the way. They arrive some early some later in the city of
Rameses during the day of the 14th, a work day, not a Sabbath
day. They assemble, get organized, ready to leave Rameses at the
beginning of the 15th, the night of the 15th. They travel
probably only a short distance and pitch their tents - Succoth -
meaning tent. There they rest on the Sabbath of the 15th, a rest
they now needed and enjoyed.

     So it was when the Passover day started for Jesus' last
Passover meal and celebration on this earth, until He returns in
     The sun had set and still the disciples had not been told
where they should prepare for the celebration of the Passover.
They could wait no longer as the sun sank behind the horizon.
With urgency they came to Jesus asking Him where the place would
be. He sent two of them to a man in town that had a room all
ready. The home owner did not seemed shocked at all to learn
Jesus and His inner 12 men would celebrate at His home. The hour
came and they were together in the upper room.
     That evening was to be like no other. Jesus was to introduce
something new, in fact a number of new things. First he answered
their argument as to who was the greatest among them, by SERVING
them, in washing their feet, and telling them He had set them an
example that they should do likewise and serve each other. Then
He takes some bread, breaks it, and tells them to eat it, for it
will represent His broken body. He then take the fruit of the
vine, and has them drink it, telling them it will represent His
blood of the New Testament, shed for many.

     After that Passover, well into the night of the 14th, they
go to the garden, where Jesus pours out His heart and soul to the
Father in heaven. He has much work to yet go through. It is not a
Sabbath day, and so much toil, sweat, pain, and suffering, awaits
Him. He knows what the prophets have written. He knows the type
of death He will face before it is finished. Before freedom from
the bondage of sin could be secured.  But it was secured. Jesus
was obedient even unto death, the death of the cross. Even the
Father could not help in the last seconds. Jesus cried " My God,
MY God, why have you forsaken me?"  It was needful. For He had to
take the sins of the world completely on Himself and so die, that
for those who would accept His sacrifice, the Father's Passover
sacrifice, they could be free to live for God and enter the
promised land of the Eternal Kingdom. Free to be led into
righteousness and life everlasting.

     Jesus died close to the end of that 14th day. They hurriedly
took Him from the tree, anointed His body with myrrh and aloes,
wound it in linen clothes, and placed Him in the tomb.

     Christ rested on the 15th day of the month of Abid, as did
Israel after coming out of Egypt from Rameses.  Jesus rested for
two more days, for a total of THREE, the number used by God for
"resurrection" (that is another fascinating subject - the
arithmetic of God - for another study at another time). After he
arose from the dead, the first human ever to be raised to eternal
glorified life, He presented Himself to the Father on the
morning of the first day of the week. It was the first day after
the weekly Sabbath during the feast of Unleavened Bread. The very
day that the wave sheaf was offered in Israel(according to how
the Sadducees read the scriptures, and they were correct in that
particular case). 
     Jesus was accepted officially by the Father as the FIRST OF
THE FIRSTFRUITS, of the first harvest of the land (1
     Those who will heed the calling, who will repent of their
sins, of being sinners, who will accept Jesus as their personal
savior, who will yield to the righteousness of God through the
indwelling of the Holy Spirit. They can be firstfruits and not
only be with Christ at His coming, but also look like Him, for
they shall see Him as He is (1 Cor.15:23; James 1:18; 1 John

     What JOY and what GLORY that will be!!  The Passover Lamb is
sacrificed for us, let us therefore KEEP the feast, not with old
leaven, neither, with the leaven bread of malice and wickedness,
but with the Unleavened  Bread  of sincerity and truth (1 Cor.5:

     " Let a man EXAMINE himself, and so let him eat of that
bread, and drink of that cup" (1 Cor.11:28).

     Here we are ONCE MORE coming to the Passover Day and that
special ceremony. It's time again to start to examine ourselves
for that very sacred service and night of the 14th day of the
first month.


Written March 1997
Keith Hunt

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