Was Jesus in the grave three days, or is that just a biblical fallacy? I say this because as Jesus prophesied in Matthew 12:40, “…so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth,” however, in the grave Friday, Saturday, and then He resurrects on Sunday, this doesn’t equate three days in the grave! So, is the Bible lying?
No, we need to remember that Jesus was a Jew, everything He said and did revolved around the Jewish calendar and timeframe. The Jewish calendar is a Lunar calendar, everything revolves around the moon and not the sun; the next day begins at sundown of the present day instead of midnight like the gregorian calendar. This being said, lets delve into the facts of Passover week (known to non Jews as Easter week).
1. Sunday – Palm Sunday – Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem on a donkey. This happened on the Sunday prior to Resurrection Sunday: this fact the gregorian calendar has correctly.
2. Monday – Jesus Teaches/Jesus is Anointed
3. Tuesday – Passover Supper – The passover supper took place on Tuesday following Palm Sunday. So Tuesday evening, prior to sundown, Jesus and his disciples sat down to eat the Passover supper (aka The Last Supper). Succeeding this, early Wednesday morning (maybe around 10-11pm Tuesday night according to gregorian time) Jesus and His disciples went to the Garden of Gethsemane where Jesus prayed and sweat drops of blood.
4. Wednesday – Jesus’ Death – This took place later Wednesday morning after multiple trials, flogging, and beatings at the Third Hour, or around 9am, Jesus finally died at the Ninth Hour, or about 3pm in the afternoon. This is when He was prepared for burial and then buried in tomb. Night 1 in the grave.
5. Thursday – Sundown to sundown – Day 1, Night 2 in the grave.
6. Friday – Sundown to sundown – Day 2, Night 3 in the grave.
7. Saturday Sundown to sundown – Day 3 in the grave. However, at sundown it began Sunday, or the first day of the week. This is when Jesus gloriously resurrected from the grave defeating death and hell and this is why, #GODisHOPE.