The Life of Jesus

The Life of Jesus

History’s Great Love Story

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The Life of Jesus: History’s Great Love Story
Renewal Journal – a chronicle of renewal and revival: www.renewaljournal.com
Geoff Waugh founding editor of the Renewal Journal
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The Life of Jesus provides a brief overview of history’s great love story. It gives a summary of the birth and boyhood of Jesus and describes his ministry through three Passover Festivals.
The book includes a detailed chart of a chronology of Jesus’ life and ministry and examines why such a popular, loving, and compassionate young leader would encounter intense hostility and opposition causing his crucifixion.
The mystery and wonder deepen because his resurrection transformed his followers and millions of lives. We date our diaries and calendars from the time of his birth.

Contents

Preface
Introduction
1 Birth and Boyhood
2 Ministry Begins
3 First to Second Passover
4 Second to Third Passover
5 Passover to Pentecost
Conclusion
Appendix 1: Chronology Chart
Appendix 2: The Feast Days
Appendix 3: The Gospels
Appendix 4: Alternate Chronology 
Appendix 5: The Shroud of Turin 
Appendix 6: Publications   

Model of Jerusalem in Jesus’ time

Preface

Why would such a good man who loved so profoundly and helped so many people be killed? Why did he provoke opposition?

If God walked among us in the person of his Son, why would people want to kill him? Why did so many vehemently oppose him?

That puzzled me as a boy. It still does.

The greatest love story the world has ever seen led to the excruciating death of crucifixion.

Many people have given their lives for other people as soldiers do in war. They die for others, defending home and country. But Jesus’ death was different. God’s Son chose to die for us because of his immense love for us. He took our place. His death gives us life. He is the perfect, sinless, eternal sacrifice for us. His blood cleanses us from all our sin as we trust in him. We are forgiven.

But why did so many good people, good religious people, hate him? That puzzled and fascinated me, so I explore that mystery in this book. I wanted to write a summary overview that people of all ages could read.

I always believed in Jesus. Even as a small boy I loved to hear and then read stories about him. He was so unique, so different. I believed his story as a boy and trusted in him. I still do and I hope you do too.

Jesus did what was good. He healed the sick, fed the hungry, set people free from addictions and evil, performed miracles, and even raised dead people. Huge crowds followed him and wanted him to be their king.

Now billions follow him, captivated by his love, the greatest love story of all. You can do that also. I invite you to simply pray something like this: Thank you Lord for all you’ve done. Forgive me for any wrong in my life. I trust in you and give my life to you.

Introduction

The year on our calendar or diary reminds us of when Jesus was born, approximately. We count the years from his arrival. So when you look at your diary or calendar you can be reminded again of Jesus.

They called him Yeshua (Joshua/Jesus) of Nazareth, the same name as Moses’ famous general who led God’s people into their Promised Land. Yeshua means God saves, or God is salvation.

That name comes to us in English through many translations from Yeshua or Y’shua in Hebrew and Aramaic, then translated into Iesous in Greek, then to IESVS in Latin and later as IESUS as printed in the first edition of the King James Bible in 1611. Later that century ‘J’ replaced the ‘I’ so the English name became Jesu (vocative) and Jesus (nominative) but eventually just Jesus in English. Other languages have translations such as Jesu, Yesu, and Isa.

English translations of the Bible used the name Jesus for Joshua/Jesus of Nazareth, and the name Joshua for others with that same name.[1]  So in English, the name Jesus became unique and sacred for Jesus of Nazareth, the Son of God, the Saviour of the world. The angel Gabriel announced his name before his birth to both Mary his mother and to Joseph who married Mary.[2] Gabriel explained that Yeshua (Joshua/Jesus) had that name because he would save his people from their sins.

The great love story had begun. Jesus came to save us and give us eternal life.

His followers recorded that story of his life and his love in the good news of the four Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. The rest of the New Testament explores the mystery and wonder of that amazing life and love.

Scholars have a bewildering array of theories about the Bible and about who wrote what, and when, and where, and why. I’m content to run with traditional explanations that have been used throughout most of history.

Jesus’ unique and wonderful life, his brutal death for us, and his powerful resurrection, all reveal his and God’s eternal love for us all. You could pause and thank him right now even as you read this.

John’s Gospel emphasizes God’s eternal love revealed in Jesus. It includes the most famous passage in the Bible:

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 

For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. (John 3:16-17, NKJV).

That love, powerfully shown on the cross, has transformed billions of lives, restoring believers to an intimate and eternal relationship with God and with others.

Three physical metaphors help me to be constantly aware of, and grateful for, God’s presence with us always:

(1) Light surrounds you. By it you can read this. The sun always shines, even when it’s hidden from us. Light shines around us though we may be unaware of it. God is light and in him there is no darkness at all. We can live in his light.

(2) Blood pumps through your body right now, cleansing and healing. We may be unaware of it until reactions like alarm alert us to our beating heart. Jesus’ blood cleanses from all sin, always. We can trust him for he is with us.

(3) We may breathe without being aware of it, or we can be aware and take deep breaths, as you may have done just now! Breath purifies our lungs and body. God is Spirit and like breath or fresh breeze, he can purify us.

May the light of God’s love breathe life in you right now.

We’ve been made in God’s image to have an eternal, loving relationship with him that even transcends death. We can know and experience God’s unconditional love no matter how far we stray from him. Those who stray most are often the most grateful for his forgiveness and love. We all stray in many ways and we all need forgiveness and we can and should be truly grateful.

God knows and loves us as we are. That makes praying or talking to him easy because he already knows our failures and struggles and welcomes us just as we are. The more honestly we come to him the more he can transform us.

If we have trouble believing we can at least say, “God if you’re there, help me.”

Some thoughts may get in the way when we pray or want to talk to God. Just give him those thoughts. He already knows all about it and loves us as we are.

If we reject God’s love and mercy by ignoring him and going our own way, we condemn ourselves to eternal darkness away from his light and love.

If we accept his love and forgiveness by believing in him, by trusting him, he gives us life, his eternal life. That makes us new. We are transformed.

Vast numbers of people worldwide of all faiths, and of none, have prayed the prayer in the popular hymn by Charlotte Elliot, ‘Just as I am’ which includes these adapted verses:

Just as I am, without one plea
But that Your blood was shed for me
And that You bid me come to Thee,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Just as I am, though tossed about
With many a conflict, many a doubt,
Fighting and fears within, without,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

God welcomes us and we can all pray that prayer. A title for Jesus, as in that song, is the sacrificial Lamb of God who takes away our sin.

The Life of Jesus is a vast topic with millions of books written about it. I hope my small contribution gives you a helpful overview. I quote from the New Revised Standard Version unless indicated otherwise, and include many footnotes that you can explore to discover more.

Best of all, of course, are the inspired Gospels now in over 700 different languages in Bible translations and a further 3,500 languages have Bible portions, especially the Gospels. Read and respond to those Gospels.

[1] Iesous (Yeshua) is translated as Joshua in these verses: Luke 3:29; Acts 7:45; Hebrews 4:8.

[2] Luke 1:31; Matthew 1:21.

Start of Chapter 1

It began at the beginning, this great love story, for “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”[1]

Why did he do that? For us.

He did it for you. He loved you so much he created you to know and enjoy him now as you read this, and forever. He offers you intimate, infinite love. He created you through the wondrous union of your parents’ ecstasy.

He made the earth for us to inhabit and care for and rule. He made the heavens (plural) for us to inherit, the physical firmament and also the realms of vast, eternal glory prepared especially for us.[2]

He created us free to accept or reject his astounding love. Sadly we went our own way. We all, like sheep, went astray. We all turned to our own way. So God laid on his Servant, his Son, all our iniquity.[3] God saves us through his Son in their great love for us all. You could pause and thank him now as you read this.

In the beginning, Adam and Eve enjoyed intimate, unashamed relationship with God and each other. Then, like us, they believed lies and went their own way, losing Paradise. But God still blessed and sustained them and their descendants who chose to love him and live for him. Sadly only a few did.

Noah and his family loved and obeyed God and he rescued them from the great flood. People ridiculed him for obeying God and building a huge boat on dry ground – not even in a dry dock. The rainbow became the sign of God’s covenant to Noah and his descendants including us.

Abram, a wealthy sheik from the wide fertile Tigris and Euphrates valleys in western Asia, north-west of the Arabian Peninsula (now Iraq), loved and obeyed God. Renamed Abraham (God’s friend) he journeyed to the Promised Land, now called Israel, from the name given to his grandson who wrestled with an angel or with the Lord.[4] Circumcision became the covenant sign for them and for their descendants through whom God would provide his salvation for us all.

Abraham and his descendants walked that verdant Promised Land, as did Jesus and his followers. So did our family for a month in December-January, 1981-82.[5]

[1] Genesis 1:1.

[2] John 14:1-6; 1 Corinthians 2:9.

[3] Isaiah 53:6. See Isaiah 52:13-53:12, the fourth Servant Song, along with Isaiah 42:1-4; 49:1-6; 50:4-7.

[4] Genesis 17:5; 32:28; 35:9-10.

[5] See Exploring Israel in General Books and Biography on renewaljournal.com

 

        

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The Life of Jesus: History’s Great Love Story
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MEDICAL-FORENSIC EXPLANATION OF THE SHROUD OF TURIN

MEDICAL-FORENSIC EXPLANATION OF THE MAN OF THE SYNDONE

Juan Manuel Miñarro López

Google English translation of http://www.lahornacina.com/articulosminarro.htm
See also The Shroud of Turin


INTRODUCTION

The following text, illustrated with drawings and photographs, represents the conclusion of six years of personal work and research on the Shroud of Turin (Italy) and the Holy Shroud of Oviedo (Spain), as a member of the EDICES (International Research Team of the Centro Español de Sindonología), but it also represents the most complete compilation of the most complete legal medical research that has ever been carried out on an object closely related to the Passion of Christ.

The work of eminent specialists in the field of legal and forensic medicine, from the beginning of the 20th century to the present day, has been fundamental to understanding the Shroud and the Shroud; but also thanks to the contribution of other specialists belonging to different fields of science, such as anthropologists, archaeologists, historians, physicists, chemists and artists.

Never has an ancient object brought together such a complete multidisciplinary team. Science does not currently have a satisfactory answer to explain the formation of the image of the Shroud, and no one for or against has been able to present science with definitive evidence that will withstand relevant scientific analysis.

REPRESENTATION OF THE MAN’S BODY OF THE HOLY SHEET

The body that we have represented, in its general and particular aspect, obeys the studies contributed by physical and forensic anthropology: the image or imprint present in the Shroud corresponds exactly to the appearance of a recent corpse, of about five or six hours , in a state of intense rigidity established instantaneously or very early, characteristic of cases due to violent deaths, extremely tiring, painful and accompanied by severe dehydration aggravated by a sustained state of fever.

In the anatomical areas of slopes, referring to the position of the body on the withers, and due to the action of gravity after death, hemostatic or cadaveric spots have been represented, with the tonality that can be expected in a corpse of a few hours. These spots are formed by the accumulation of blood due to gravity, so it is a clear indication of the position in which a body remains at the time of death.

The morphology of the trauma, color and texture of the blood, has been carried out thanks to the forensic advice of Dr. Alfonso Sánchez Hermosilla and by the medical analyst Dr. Antonio Petit Gancedo. Thanks to their contributions, I have been able to represent the hematic morphology according to the different types: venous, arterial and post-mortem hemorrhage. Likewise, fluids due to serum and fluids of origin in cadaveric pulmonary edema have been distinguished.

The somatic constitution, according to Judica Cordiglia, could be described as that of a tall man of stature (between 178 and 180 cm), keeping the lines of his trunk and extremities a harmony and sculptural proportion; balanced in both width and length. Reason why the man of the Shroud can be defined as a normotype; that is to say: it presents a completely peculiar somatic structure, being outside and above any type of ethnic classification.

Regarding the disposition and composition of the body, the head is slightly bent forward (approximately 40º angle) and the nape is elevated and tense, with marked cervical kyphosis; the sternocleidomastoid, trapezius and inspiratory muscles appear stiff, as do the deltoids, and supinator muscles of the arms; the thorax is dilated, as in a forced inspiration; the pectoralis major muscles are contracted and protruding; the scapular muscles are also contracted and attached to the ribs; the sunken epigastrium; the prominent hypogastrium; the dorsal-lumbar muscles very tense, with accentuated lumbar lordosis; the belly is swollen, a characteristic symptom of a suffocating death; the legs are represented bent: the right at an angle of 64 degrees and the left at an angle of 77 degrees; the nail wound in the feet has been located according to Dr. Smith’s theory, at the point of confluence of the calcaneus, talus, navicular and cuboid, a space that leads to the sinus tarsi; the left foot is flexed 90º and the right is hyperextended 155º, a position called by Palacio Carvajal “standing equine”; the arms are less rigid than the rest of the muscles of the body and are placed crossed over the pubis, but in such a way that a clearly forced pose results from the fact that they had to overcome the rigor mortis set by the cross position; the hands appear with the thumbs folded over the palms, due to a possible injury to the palmar nerve arch caused by the nails;

FACE AND HEAD: GAPS AND CROWN OF THORNS

The studies carried out reveal a swollen face, typical of a man who has been very mistreated and who at the same time received the placement of a lacerating object on his head, like a crown or helmet of thorns.

More than fifty puncture wounds are seen over the visible regions of the head. The crushing of the nose and the swelling of the eye and right cheekbone reveal the type of injuries that could have caused a blow from the stick; cylindrical object about 4.5 cm in diameter. You can also see the lack of hair in the beard, as if pieces had been deliberately pulled out.

By its appearance, the face reveals traces of an intense beating. Presents injuries caused by both direct and indirect blows, perhaps due to falls: swelling in the forehead area, region of both superciliary arches and mid-frontal area; tumescence continues in the arch of the right eyebrow, more pronounced in the outer part of the eye, which should condition its partial closure; abundant clots of vital blood on the forehead, temples, neck and scalp; profusion of arterial or venous hemorrhages, compatible with wounds caused by sharp objects, arranged peripherally on the skull ( cap of spines of ziziphus jujuba); large contusion under the right zygomatic region (right cheek) in the shape of a triangle, the most elongated vertex of which is directed towards the crest of the nose; at the level of the left vertex of the nasal dorsum, there is a bruised and bruised area caused by a blow that must have fractured the nasal cartilage, causing the nose to deviate to the left; the nose has a flattened and flattened left wing; the lips, mustache, chin and beard are impregnated with blood; abundant streams of blood mixed with saliva and fluid from pulmonary edema, coming out of the right corner of the mouth; very bruised chin, and abundant streams of blood coming out of the nostrils, forming two jets that cross the right side of the mouth and the center of the lower lip.

ROMAN FLAGELLATION FOOTPRINTS

Practically the entire body is covered with small wounds, equal to and similar to small dumbbells of about 3 cm in length. The marks, paired and pinpoint, are formed by small circles of about 12 mm in diameter, somewhat separated from each other but joined by a transverse line, in many cases visible. Some of these marks are not very visible on the Shroud with the naked eye, but are clearly revealed by ultraviolet light photographs. They are undoubtedly those that would be left by the Roman torture instrument, known by the name of “flagellum taxillatum”, named for the balls or “taxilli” that finished off its three straps formed by nerves obtained from animals.

The representation of these lesions is located throughout the body: back, legs, chest, belly, gluteal area and, possibly, even on the genitals. Obviously, we think that the man must have been totally naked when he received this brutal and systematic punishment.

The study of the syndonic image reveals some characteristics that should be highlighted, and that have been applied in the realization of the body: the punishment was applied by two executioners or lictorsright-handed, located on each flank of the inmate, approximately 1 meter away, distributing the blows in a fan shape throughout the victim’s body, systematically and viciously; the number of blows amounted to about 120, not counting those that we have not been able to study due to the lack of traces of a large part of the arms, an area of ​​the image lost due to the 1532 fire in Chamberí (France), in addition to the no side or side image of the man’s body in the Shroud (aspect not yet satisfactorily explained); During the flagellation, the posture of our man must have been hunched, which is deduced from the studies carried out by computer on ultraviolet photographs obtained from the Shroud, By means of which the cancellation of the blood and serum streams in the different parts of the body can be verified; in the stooped position, the spurs of the upper dorsal part fell to the sides with an angulation of 100º, 90º and 70º, during the application of the punishment, later, already in an upright position or sitting, the spurs fell downwards following the action due to gravity, something similar happened in the gluteal areas, and in the lower extremities the streaks are clear and are directed, almost always, downwards; The great clarity with which many of these trails are appreciated can be explained by the time that passed from the flogging until they were dressed again, the time necessary for them to dry and not be absorbed by the tunic, remaining in the body and then passing to the shroud through a process that cannot be explained only by contact; In the upper part of the back, the tracks and the marks of the “taxilli” have disappeared, being seen to be blurred and compact, in addition the area is very abraded, as if the wounded skin were scorched by friction against some type of rough surface (The patibulum?); Finally, the knees are also heavily injured: the right one presents numerous excoriations of different sizes at the level of the patella, and a loss of substance is sensed in the same place, while the left one presents less extensive wounds. The explanation for these injuries is obvious: on the way to the torture, the man must have fallen, and perhaps on several occasions.

FOOTPRINTS OF THE CRUCIFIXION

The first thing that catches our attention in the Shroud, when we look at the crossed arms (left over right), is the existing wound at the level of the left wrist (and not in the palm of the hand, as is always represented in sacred art) . Dr. Pier Barbet carried out experiments with recently amputated arms, still alive, and confirmed that the most suitable area to insert a nail was through the carpus, and not in the palms. In these areas the tissues do not have structures to support the weight of a body.

We calculated a weight of about 80 kg for the man from the Shroud, hanging in a vertical position and with the arms forming an angle of approximately 65 degrees. It is easy to deduce the weight that each arm would support depending on the mentioned angle, applying the following mathematical formula: 40 kg / cosine of 65º = 95 kg. The palms could not bear this weight; however, the wrists can withstand up to 200 kg of traction. Therefore, according to Barbet and many other specialists, the nail had to penetrate through a space between the carpal bones, called the “destot point”, a space that Barbet, and later other syndonologists, had placed between the large bone and the lunate. . In turn, Barbet maintained that this injury caused the injury of the median nerve and the abduction of the thumbs. However, according to recent studies by Dr.

For Palacios Carvajal, a specialist in traumatology, there are two possible spaces in the carpal area, in this case absolutely certain, where the nail could penetrate. Although he also considers that Barbet’s other theory about the supposed lesion of the median nerve, to explain the absence of traces of both thumbs in the syndonic image, does not seem true or plausible either, and maintains that the thumbs may not be seen because they are simply retracted, as is almost normal in every hand in an attitude of relaxation.

From all the above, what seems at least plausible is that the nail penetrated through the carpal area and not through the ulnar radial space. Although this is another anatomical area, it must also be considered feasible to achieve a stable suspension. Furthermore, it is relatively so close to the carpal region, difficult to see clearly enough in the Shroud, that we cannot at the moment make an absolute judgment.

The nail wound in the feet has been located according to Dr. Smith’s theory: at the point of confluence of the calcaneus, talus, navicular and cuboid, the space that leads to the sinus tarsi.

In the dorsal image the feet appear somewhat crossed: converging toes and separate heels. The right foot presents all its marked sole, which indicates the most flexed disposition of the right knee. Of the left foot we only see the heel and the central part. The heel of the left foot, profusely stained with blood, has marks that appear to be caused by the fingers of one hand.

With complete security, the left foot was nailed on the right, pressing the wound on that side, in such a way that the blood that flowed was slowed by the pressure, forming a trapezoidal and irregular stain that extends to the left in a trail oblique. This would happen when the blood does not flow freely due to the pressure of the left foot already mentioned. However, the entry point of the nail is clearly visible on the left foot, as well as some free-flowing trails of blood.

LAUNCHED ON THE SIDE

The wound in the side is located between the fifth and sixth rib. It may be an evident proof of the practice of “exactus mortis”, a mere verification of death effected with an accurate blow of the spear. We know that the crucified were normally practiced the “crurifagium”, a violent blow with the mace with which their legs were broken to accelerate their death. We know from the Gospels that such a technique was not necessary for Jesus, since he died relatively quickly. It was only necessary, by order of the Roman attorney Pontius Pilate, to verify the reality of his death.

According to what we see in the Shroud, the wound on the side can be irrefutable proof of death, especially because of its appearance and morphology. Different forensic authors describe characteristics of a post-mortem hemorrhage, showing how the blood mass is already separated from the plasma or liquid medium in which the red blood cells float. In addition, the halos formed by serous liquids are clearly visible in the entire periphery of the clots, especially if we apply ultraviolet light. Also, the edges of the wound remain open: there is no retraction in the skin, there is no life.

On the other hand, these blood serum or serous fluids probably come from a severe pulmonary edema caused by the flogging and aggravated by the asphyctic death of the prisoner. This same effect and type of stain can be seen in the central part of the Shroud of Oviedo. In the case of the spear, these liquids were perhaps the cause of the phenomenon described to us by Saint John the Evangelist, a witness to the “exactus mortis”, explaining it in the Gospel passage as an emanation of blood and water that gushed out from the side of Jesus.

The haemorrhage from the side continues on the back through compact, cadaveric-type streaks, which in this case are in a transverse direction with respect to the vertical, so it must have occurred when the body was no longer on the withers. In the Shroud we call it the “lumbar belt” and we think that it is blood from the wound on the side, caused when the corpse moved, which caused drainage of the inferior vena cava and traces of fluid from pulmonary edema, serum and pleural fluid.

Recent studies have discovered an exit hole for the spear on the left side of the back, below the scapula. If this is true, the prophetic phrase “look at the one they pierced” would be real and literal.

Reconstruction of the way he was shrouded in the linen sheet
Note from La Hornacina : this Reclining Syndicate by the Sevillian sculptor Juan Manuel Miñarro, carved in polychrome cedar wood (approximately 178 cm high), is the main axis of the traveling exhibition on the Shroud that has been seen this year in Malaga and next 2013 it will be seen in Seville (Sala Antiquarium), as well as in other Spanish cities such as Toledo, Zaragoza, Santiago de Compostela or Alcalá de Henares.

www.lahornacina.com

Google English translation of http://www.lahornacina.com/articulosminarro.htm
See also The Shroud of Turin

See also:

Crucified and Risen


Crucified and Risen – Blog
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Alternate Chronology – 3 days & nights

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BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH(CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

BLOGS INDEX 7: IMAGES (PHOTOS AND ALBUMS)

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Alternate Chronology of the Crucifixion of Jesus

The Greatest Gift of all

“For God loved the world so much that He gave His One and Only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16) 

Alternate Chronology of the Crucifixion of Jesus

Like Christmas, celebrating Jesus’ birth, we may celebrate these events of the crucifixion on symbolic days which remind us of the literal events, even though we may not be following their exact chronology or dates.

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Alternate chronology of the crucifixion of Jesus:
https://renewaljournal.com/2020/12/18/alternate-chronology-of-the-crucifixion-of-jesus/
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Some scholars argue for a crucifixion on the Thursday of Holy Week followed by two Sabbath days, the Passover Sabbath on Friday and the regular Sabbath on the Saturday of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Passover is one day while the Feast of Unleavened Bread lasts for seven days.

Jesus led the Last Supper with his disciples on the same Jewish day, after sunset, that he died, the day the Passover lambs were killed, to be eaten that night on the special Passover Sabbath (the next Jewish day, as the day ended at sunset).

A literal translation of Matthew 28:1 has Sabbaths in the plural (in Greek), allowing for two:  After the Sabbaths, around dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to take a look at the burial site. (International Standard Version© 1995-2014 by ISV Foundation.)

John also allows for this: Now it was the day of Preparation, and the next day was to be a special Sabbath (John 19:31, see also John 13:1).

This chronology correlates with Jesus’ predictions:

For just as Jonah was for three days and three nights in the belly of the sea monster, so for three days and three nights the Son of Man will be in the heart of the earth (Matthew 12:40).

Then he took the twelve aside and said to them, ‘See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written about the Son of Man by the prophets will be accomplished. 32  For he will be handed over to the Gentiles; and he will be mocked and insulted and spat upon. 33  After they have flogged him, they will kill him, and on the third day he will rise again’ (Luke 18:31-33).

James Tabor examines the gospel accounts of the last supper in his article ‘The Last Days of Jesus: A Final “Messianic” Meal’, reproduced by the Biblical Archaeology Society (https://www.biblicalarchaeology.org/daily/people-cultures-in-the-bible/jesus-historical-jesus/the-last-days-of-jesus-a-final-messianic-meal/). He writes:

The confusion arose because all the gospels say that there was a rush to get his body off the cross and buried before sundown because the “Sabbath” was near. Everyone assumed the reference to “the Sabbath” had to be Saturday so the crucifixion must have been on a Friday. However, as Jews know, the day of Passover itself is also a “Sabbath” or rest day no matter what weekday it falls on. In the year 30 AD Friday, the 15th of the Jewish month Nisan was also a Sabbath so two Sabbaths occurred back to back Friday and Saturday. Matthew seems to know this as he says that the women who visited Jesus’ tomb came early Sunday morning “after the Sabbaths” (Matthew 28:1).

As is often the case, the gospel of John preserves a more accurate chronology of what went on. John specifies that the Wednesday night “last supper” was “before the festival of Passover.” He also notes that when Jesus’ accusers delivered him to be crucified on Thursday morning they would not enter Pilate’s courtyard because they would be defiled and would not be able to eat the Passover that evening (John 18:28). John knows that the Jews would be eating their traditional Seder meal Thursday evening.

That discussion sent me checking the plural Sabbaths in Matthew 28:1. It is plural and can be used for either Sabbaths or Sabbath, as also in Matthew 12:1. Most translators opt for singular, but a few retain the literal plural, such as these for Matthew 12:1 and 28:1.

At that time Jesus went through the grain on the Sabbath days. And his disciples were hungry, and began to pluck the ears of grain and to eat.
(New Matthew Bible,© 2016 by Ruth Magnusson (Davis))

At that time did Jesus go on the sabbaths through the corn, and his disciples were hungry, and they began to pluck ears, and to eat,
(Young’s Literal Translation, by Robert Young who compiled Young’s Analytical Concordance.)

After the Sabbaths, around dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to take a look at the burial site.
(International Standard Version, © 1995-2014 by ISV Foundation.)

The Bible passages allow for a crucifixion on the Thursday of Holy Week, and even where Sabbath is used in the singular it does indicate that they found the stone rolled away on the first day of the week after that Sabbath. The first day of the week had begun at the previous sunset.

That Friday may have been a special Passover Sabbath, not just the Saturday. Now it was the day of Preparation, and the next day was to be a special Sabbath. Because the Jewish leaders did not want the bodies left on the crosses during the Sabbath, they asked Pilate to have the legs broken and the bodies taken down (John 19:31).

Irrespective of the day, the great significance is that the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world was crucified on the Day of Preparation for the Passover, the day on which the Passover lamb was killed so that after sunset the Passover could be celebrated on the next Jewish day beginning after sunset.

John suggests this:  Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that His hour had come that He should depart from this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end.  And supper being ended, the devil having already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray Him, Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come from God and was going to God, rose from supper and laid aside His garments, took a towel and girded Himself. After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded. (John 13:1-5)

However, most scholars see the special Passover Sabbath on the Saturday. Many point out that there is no Nisan 14 on a Thursday, and that from the celestial calendars Nisan 14 fell on Friday April 7 in AD 30, and Friday April 3 in AD 33, the most likely dates for the crucifixion, based on the dates from the new moon of those years.

Irrespective of the day, the great significance is that the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world was crucified on the Day of Preparation for the Passover, the day on which the Passover lamb was killed so that after sunset the Passover could be celebrated on the next Jewish day beginning after sunset.

The synoptic Gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke) describe how the meal with Jesus was celebrated as a Passover meal and Jesus gave it new meaning, telling us to “do this in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19; 1 Corinthians 11:23-25).

Like Christmas, celebrating Jesus’ birth, we may celebrate these events of the crucifixion on symbolic days which remind us of the literal events, even though we are not following their exact chronology or dates.

I’m content to follow the traditional chronology and dates, as in our diaries, as symbolic and liturgical reminders of the greatest events in human history.

See also:


The Life of Jesus: History’s Great Love Story – Blog
The Life of Jesus: History’s Great Love Story – PDF

*
Crucified and Risen – Blog
Crucified & Risen – PDF
The Easter Story

 

A Holy Week, Passover & Resurrection All1
Holy Week, Christian Passover & Resurrection – Blog
Holy Week, Christian Passover & Resurrection – 
PDF
3 books in 1

 

A Holy Week All
Holy Week – Blog
Holy Week – PDF

Summary of the events of Holy Week

 


The Shroud of Turin

Medical-Forensic Explanation of the Shroud of Turin
English translation of Model of the wounded Shroud of Turin image

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The Shroud of Turin

“For God so loved the world that He gave His One and Only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16) 

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We do not base our faith, or hopes, on an artifact but, although controversial, it does provide confirmation of the brutal torture and trauma of crucifixion that Jesus suffered.

The Shroud of Turin


Enhanced positive image

The Shroud of Turin is the most intensely investigated religious artifact in history. Many scholars believe it may be the linen cloth that was wrapped around Jesus’ body. Its faint image shows the horrendous wounds of a crucified man with wounds exactly matching the description of Jesus’ death.

Physicist, and founder of the Shroud of Turin Research Project (STURP), John P. Jackson, has proposed that the image features of the Shroud of Turin were produced by radiation emanating from the body in the Shroud at the moment of resurrection.

The shroud of Turin is a 14.3 foot by 3.7 linen cloth bearing the faint double image (ventral and dorsal) of a naked man who appears to have been crucified (together with burn marks and water stains resulting from fires, one in 1532).

There is a puncture wound on his left wrist (his right wrist is hidden from view), and there are puncture wounds on his feet as if they were pierced by a nail or nails. The back of the man is covered with over 120 scourge marks, apparently imposed by the Roman instrument of torture known as the flagrum (a whip with two or three thongs to which were attached small balls of lead). There is a large puncture wound on the right side between the ribs from which blood and a watery serum have flowed. The image resides only on the top-most fibres of the threads with which the Shroud is woven, and it is a negative image.

Although very faint when viewed as a positive, the image becomes much clearer when darks and lights are reversed.

[Carbon dating in 1988 from a tiny corner of the Shroud dated the sample between 1260 and 1390 AD, but it is argued that the sample came from repaired cloth.]

If the medieval date is right, then this implies that the Shroud is a forgery, when all the scientific evidence we have other than this date implies that it is not a forgery: the image on the Shroud was not drawn or painted (there are no binding agents or particulates on the Shroud in the region of the image); it is a negative created at a time when photography didn’t exist, but it is not a photograph (in contains 3D information and photographs do not), it is not a contact print (parts of the Shroud that were not in contact with the body bear impressions as clear as parts that were in contact with the body); the man in the Shroud has truly been subject to horrific and mortal injuries; he has wounds associated with crucifixion, and the exit wound on the wrist contradicts depictions of the crucifixion in medieval art, but reflects the way in which people were crucified; he is covered with scourge marks clearly inflicted by the Roman instrument of the torture known as the flagrum, and he has puncture wounds on his head consistent with the wearing of a roughly prepared cap of thorns rather than the elegant wreath of thorns depicted by medieval artists; there is a large wound on his right side which matches a spear used by Roman executioners and from which post-mortem blood and a watery serum (visible only by ultraviolet fluorescence photography) have flowed; the blood on the Shroud – that of a real man – contains a high level of bilirubin, a substance associated with severe physical trauma; there are no signs of decomposition, meaning that the body was removed from the Shroud within a few days; the Shroud contains traces of pollen from plants growing only in the area of Jerusalem, some of which are extinct since antiquity, and there are microscopic traces of dirt at the foot of the man in the Shroud that only match limestone found in the area of Jerusalem.

Source: On the Physics of the Shroud of Turin.

See Google for many articles and images from the Shroud of Turin.

Latest on Shroud of Turin: Science Finally Catches Up with Faith

It is the most intriguing and unique relic of its kind and the longstanding irony is – there are legions of professed Christians who have no idea what it is, or that it even exists. The Shroud of Turin is revered as the sacred burial cloth of Jesus Christ and is arguably the most important archaeological artifact ever found. The image on the cloth is like a photographic negative exposed to light that is a detailed portrait of a crucified man. The historical specifics include the multitude of gashes from the scourging, the flow of blood, the presence of Pontius Pilate coins on the eyes, the wounds on the wrists and not the hands, the presence of a pony-tail running down the man’s back, bits of pollen that are unique to the region around Jerusalem are all remarkably accurate.


Encoded 3-D Information at High Resolution

Experts say victim was ‘tortured’

Is this proof that the Turin Shroud was used to bury Jesus?

Experts have revealed that the Shroud of Turin shows signs of blood from a victim of torture – supporting claims it was used to bury Jesus.

The linen cloth, believed to have been used to wrap the body of Jesus after crucifixion, contains ‘nanoparticles’ which are not typical of the blood of a healthy person.

Elvio Carlino, a researcher at the Institute of Crystallography in Bari, Italy, says the tiny particles “have recorded a scenario of great suffering, whose victim was wrapped up in the funeral cloth.”

These particles had a “peculiar structure, size and distribution,” according to University of Padua professor Giulio Fanti.

Model of the wounded Shroud of Turin image

English translation of Model of the wounded Shroud of Turin image
Medical-Forensic Explanation of the Shroud of Turin

Blood trickled from the victim’s wrists down his arms, indicating that he hung from his wrists on the cross, not with his arms horizontal as in most crucifixion paintings.

We do not base our faith, or hopes, on an artifact but, although controversial, it does provide confirmation of the brutal torture and trauma of crucifixion that Jesus suffered.

The Shroud of Turin and the painting by Akiane Kramarik

Akiane Kramarik became famous for her paintings and poetry, begun at age four when she started having visions of Jesus and heavenly scenes. An interesting video shows the correlation between the face on the Shroud of Turin and the painting of the vision of Jesus by Akiane:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U2AdNTKcGnc

    
Enhanced Shroud face and Akiane painting.
 

Visions are subjective and open to interpretation, but we live in a time when increasing numbers of people, especially Muslims, are having visions of Jesus that often bring them to faith in him as their Saviour and Lord. You too can believe in Jesus, the Christ, the Son of God, your Saviour and Lord.

See also:


The Life of Jesus: History’s Great Love Story – Blog
The Life of Jesus: History’s Great Love Story – PDF

 

*
Crucified and Risen – Blog
Crucified & Risen – PDF
The Easter Story

 

A Holy Week, Passover & Resurrection All1
Holy Week, Christian Passover & Resurrection – Blog
Holy Week, Christian Passover & Resurrection – 
PDF
3 books in 1

 

A Holy Week All
Holy Week – Blog
Holy Week – PDF

Summary of the events of Holy Week

 


Alternate Chronology of the Crucifixion

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How December 25 became Christmas

How December 25 became Christmas.

The most loudly touted theory about the origins of the Christmas date(s) is that it was borrowed from pagan celebrations. There is another way to account for the origins of Christmas on December 25: Strange as it may seem, the key to dating Jesus’ birth may lie in the dating of Jesus’ death at Passover.

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bruegel-bethlehem
A blanket of snow covers the little town of Bethlehem, in Pieter Bruegel’s oil painting from 1566. Although Jesus’ birth is celebrated every year on December 25, Luke and the other gospel writers offer no hint about the specific time of year he was born. Photo: Scala/Art Resource, NY.

 

The earliest mention of December 25 as Jesus’ birthday comes from a mid-fourth-century Roman almanac that lists the death dates of various Christian bishops and martyrs. The first date listed, December 25, is marked: natus Christus in Betleem Judeae: “Christ was born in Bethlehem of Judea.”3 In about 400 C.E., Augustine of Hippo mentions a local dissident Christian group, the Donatists, who apparently kept Christmas festivals on December 25, but refused to celebrate the Epiphany on January 6, regarding it as an innovation. Since the Donatist group only emerged during the persecution under Diocletian in 312 C.E. and then remained stubbornly attached to the practices of that moment in time, they seem to represent an older North African Christian tradition.

In the East, January 6 [now Epiphany] was at first not associated with the magi alone, but with the Christmas story as a whole.

So, almost 300 years after Jesus was born, we finally find people observing his birth in mid-winter. But how had they settled on the dates December 25 and January 6?

There are two theories today: one extremely popular, the other less often heard outside scholarly circles (though far more ancient).4

The most loudly touted theory about the origins of the Christmas date(s) is that it was borrowed from pagan celebrations. The Romans had their mid-winter Saturnalia festival in late December; barbarian peoples of northern and western Europe kept holidays at similar times. To top it off, in 274 C.E., the Roman emperor Aurelian established a feast of the birth of Sol Invictus (the Unconquered Sun), on December 25. Christmas, the argument goes, is really a spin-off from these pagan solar festivals. According to this theory, early Christians deliberately chose these dates to encourage the spread of Christmas and Christianity throughout the Roman world: If Christmas looked like a pagan holiday, more pagans would be open to both the holiday and the God whose birth it celebrated.   …

Connection between the traditional date of Jesus’ death and his birth.

There is another way to account for the origins of Christmas on December 25: Strange as it may seem, the key to dating Jesus’ birth may lie in the dating of Jesus’ death at Passover. This view was first suggested to the modern world by French scholar Louis Duchesne in the early 20th century and fully developed by American Thomas Talley in more recent years.8 But they were certainly not the first to note a connection between the traditional date of Jesus’ death and his birth.


The baby Jesus flies down from heaven on the back of a cross, in this detail from Master Bertram’s 14th-century Annunciation scene. Jesus’ conception carried with it the promise of salvation through his death. It may be no coincidence, then, that the early church celebrated Jesus’ conception and death on the same calendar day: March 25, exactly nine months before December 25. Kunsthalle, Hamburg/Bridgeman Art Library, NY

Around 200 C.E. Tertullian of Carthage reported the calculation that the 14th of Nisan (the day of the crucifixion according to the Gospel of John) in the year Jesus diedc was equivalent to March 25 in the Roman (solar) calendar.9 March 25 is, of course, nine months before December 25; it was later recognized as the Feast of the Annunciation—the commemoration of Jesus’ conception.10 Thus, Jesus was believed to have been conceived and crucified on the same day of the year. Exactly nine months later, Jesus was born, on December 25.d

This idea appears in an anonymous Christian treatise titled On Solstices and Equinoxes, which appears to come from fourth-century North Africa. The treatise states: “Therefore our Lord was conceived on the eighth of the kalends of April in the month of March [March 25], which is the day of the passion of the Lord and of his conception. For on that day he was conceived on the same he suffered.”11 Based on this, the treatise dates Jesus’ birth to the winter solstice.

Augustine, too, was familiar with this association. In On the Trinity (c. 399–419) he writes: “For he [Jesus] is believed to have been conceived on the 25th of March, upon which day also he suffered; so the womb of the Virgin, in which he was conceived, where no one of mortals was begotten, corresponds to the new grave in which he was buried, wherein was never man laid, neither before him nor since. But he was born, according to tradition, upon December the 25th.”12


Learn about the magi in art and literature in “Witnessing the Divine” by Robin M. Jensen, originally published in Bible Review and now available for free in Bible History Daily.


In the East, too, the dates of Jesus’ conception and death were linked. But instead of working from the 14th of Nisan in the Hebrew calendar, the easterners used the 14th of the first spring month (Artemisios) in their local Greek calendar—April 6 to us. April 6 is, of course, exactly nine months before January 6—the eastern date for Christmas. In the East, too, we have evidence that April was associated with Jesus’ conception and crucifixion. Bishop Epiphanius of Salamis writes that on April 6, “The lamb was shut up in the spotless womb of the holy virgin, he who took away and takes away in perpetual sacrifice the sins of the world.”13 Even today, the Armenian Church celebrates the Annunciation in early April (on the 7th, not the 6th) and Christmas on January 6.e

Thus, we have Christians in two parts of the world calculating Jesus’ birth on the basis that his death and conception took place on the same day (March 25 or April 6) and coming up with two close but different results (December 25 and January 6).

Connecting Jesus’ conception and death in this way will certainly seem odd to modern readers, but it reflects ancient and medieval understandings of the whole of salvation being bound up together. One of the most poignant expressions of this belief is found in Christian art. In numerous paintings of the angel’s Annunciation to Mary—the moment of Jesus’ conception—the baby Jesus is shown gliding down from heaven on or with a small cross (see photo above of detail from Master Bertram’s Annunciation scene); a visual reminder that the conception brings the promise of salvation through Jesus’ death.

The notion that creation and redemption should occur at the same time of year is also reflected in ancient Jewish tradition, recorded in the Talmud. The Babylonian Talmud preserves a dispute between two early-second-century C.E. rabbis who share this view, but disagree on the date: Rabbi Eliezer states: “In Nisan the world was created; in Nisan the Patriarchs were born; on Passover Isaac was born … and in Nisan they [our ancestors] will be redeemed in time to come.” (The other rabbi, Joshua, dates these same events to the following month, Tishri.)14 Thus, the dates of Christmas and Epiphany may well have resulted from Christian theological reflection on such chronologies: Jesus would have been conceived on the same date he died, and born nine months later.15

In the end we are left with a question: How did December 25 become Christmas? We cannot be entirely sure. Elements of the festival that developed from the fourth century until modern times may well derive from pagan traditions. Yet the actual date might really derive more from Judaism—from Jesus’ death at Passover, and from the rabbinic notion that great things might be expected, again and again, at the same time of the year—than from paganism. Then again, in this notion of cycles and the return of God’s redemption, we may perhaps also be touching upon something that the pagan Romans who celebrated Sol Invictus, and many other peoples since, would have understood and claimed for their own, too.16

Source: How December 25 became Christmas, by Andrew McGowan in Bible History Daily, September 24, 2020.

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Crucified and Risen


Crucified and Risen
The Easter Story

Crucified & Risen – PDF

Holy Week – PDF

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A summary of the events on one Jewish Day – from sunset to the next sunset.

The Passover lamb was killed that day.  Jesus chose to die on that day, fulfilling the Passover and the prophecies about the Messiah/Christ – God’s Anointed One.

This Blog: selections from the book Crucified and Risen: The Easter Story.

Use and reproduce these resources any way you wish to share the Good News of Easter – He is risen indeed.

From the Introduction

The Easter Story

Tension rose. Many believed that the famous, radical young prophet from the rural hills of the village of Nazareth in the north was the long-awaited Messiah, the Christ.  That ancient title Messiah (Hebrew) or Christ (Greek) meant God’s Anointed One. People believed their Messiah would free them from the tyranny of the Roman Empire and establish his eternal kingdom.

Some people, like the Zealots, wanted to fight to free their nation. Roman soldiers savagely crucified these insurrectionists as a public demonstration of the futility of opposing their Empire. One disciple of the young prophet was Simon the Zealot.

Other people, such as the Jewish leaders, co-operated with their Roman overlords, hoping to keep the peace and prevent further invasion and destruction. One of the radical prophet’s disciples was Matthew, approved as a tax collector for Rome. People regarded tax collectors as traitors.

Other disciples of the popular prophet ran a successful fishing business in Galilee, owning many boats and employing many fishermen. They returned to their business after the traumatic and confusing events of their prophet’s arrest, torture and public execution.

This radical young prophet annoyed the Jewish leaders. He broke many of their strict religious laws and traditions. He welcomed all kinds of people and was widely known as a friend of prostitutes and traitors like tax collectors. He visited their homes. He welcomed sinners to join him in the homes of strict religious leaders who were shocked, appalled and angered.

He survived many assassination attempts.  Two kings, father and son, wanted to kill him (Matthew 2:13; Luke 13:31).  People in his home village attempted to push him over a cliff (Luke 4:29).  People in Jerusalem tried to stone him more than once (John 8:59, 10:31).  Religious leaders often plotted to kill him (Matthew 12:14, 26:4; Mark 11:18; Luke 19:47).  At times, his own family thought he was crazy, and many Jewish leaders said he used demonic powers (Mark 3:21-22).

So, during his three years of public teaching and preaching, he stirred up opposition as well as a huge following of people wanting healing and miracles. Then during his final journey to Jerusalem for that momentous Passover, he warned his closest followers three times that he would be arrested, tortured and executed. They could not comprehend that, and Peter earned a harsh rebuke for disagreeing with Jesus. But Jesus clearly described what lay ahead, as in this explanation:

Then he took the twelve aside and said to them, ‘See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written about the Son of Man by the prophets will be accomplished. For he will be handed over to the Gentiles; and he will be mocked and insulted and spat upon.  After they have flogged him, they will kill him, and on the third day he will rise again.’  But they understood nothing about all these things; in fact, what he said was hidden from them, and they did not grasp what was said.  (Luke 18:31-34, see also Luke 9:22, 44-45)

The High Priest and the chief priests of the ruling Sanhedrin were determined to kill this dangerous, radical young man. Driven by jealousy of his popularity and the threat that his popularity may lead to a possible uprising and severe Roman retaliation (as did happen around 40 years later in 70AD), the religious leaders wanted him dead and his threat removed.

Eventually they did kill him.  But he chose the time and the place and the method (John 10:17-18).  He was publicly crucified on the day the Passover lambs were killed.  He fulfilled prophecies about the Messiah, but even his closest friends did not understand that, until later.  One of his disciples betrayed him.  Another fought to defend him, slicing off a high priest’s servant’s ear – which needed immediate repair. Then all his friends deserted him and fled.  By nine o’clock that morning their leader and friend, the Messiah, was savagely tortured and crucified.

Romans crucified their victims along the main road just outside a town or village.  They lopped trees and their victims carried the crossbar to the dreadful execution site where they were nailed to the crossbar and hoisted onto a tree trunk or stake.  Peter later wrote that Jesus bore our sins in His own body on the tree (1 Peter 2:24). The execution place just outside Jerusalem’s city wall was called the place of the skull, with graves nearby.  There are tombs and graves just outside that city wall even today.

Eye-witnesses saw and heard the horrendous spectacle. A few, like John, saw it from nearby. Spectators taunted the central victim: And the people stood by, watching; but the leaders scoffed at him, saying, ‘He saved others; let him save himself if he is the Messiah of God, his chosen one!’ The soldiers also mocked him, coming up and offering him sour wine, and saying, ‘If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!’ (Luke 23:35-37)

The three victims gasped out brief cries, one with angry accusations: One of the criminals who were hanged there kept deriding him and saying, ‘Are you not the Messiah? Save yourself and us!’ (Luke 23:39)

Soldiers divided the victims’ clothes among themselves, gambling for some.  Eventually they smashed the legs of the two victims still alive so they died quickly, no longer able to push up from their spiked feet to gasp more breath. Religious leaders wanted them off the crosses before the Sabbath began at sunset.

The other victim was already dead so one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and blood and water flowed out.

The mystery deepened rapidly.  Matthew, the disciple who had been a despised tax collector for Rome, reported that the curtain of the temple was split from top to bottom. The earth shook, rocks split and tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life and came out of the tombs after the resurrection and went into the city and appeared to many people (Matthew 27:51-52).

Rumours began to spread that weekend.

Most people thought that the unbelievable rumours that the Messiah was alive were impossible, and said so.  Loudly.

Only a few, very few at first, thought that it had really happened.  Even after a month some still doubted that it actually happened. (Matthew 28:16-17)

They saw the awful, brutal execution. Their leader had been severely flogged and tortured early one morning before his execution.  The conquering Romans made sure their victims suffered maximum agony and humiliation on thousands of crosses, suffering publicly and slowly in excruciating pain to their last agonized breath. That’s how we got our English words excruciate (ex-crux – out of the cross) and agony from the Greek word agon (struggle or contest).

Then, on the third day, he mysteriously appeared to many of his friends. That afternoon and evening he explained that the Scriptures said that the Messiah had to suffer:

Then he said to them, ‘Oh, how foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have declared!  Was it not necessary that the Messiah should suffer these things and then enter into his glory?’  Then beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them the things about himself in all the scriptures.

 Then he said to them, ‘These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you—that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.’  Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and he said to them, ‘Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem (Luke 24:25-27, 44-47).

Crucified, as thousands were, their Messiah and King then appeared mysteriously for just over a month from the full moon at Passover until his ascension beyond the clouds. Even his name, Yeshua/Joseph/Jesus told that story. It means God saves.

The Greek word Ἰησοῦς (Iesous, Yeshua), translated mostly as Jesus, but also as Joshua, means God saves, or God is salvation. English translations of the Bible traditionally use ‘Jesus’ when the reference is to Joshua/Yeshua of Nazareth and commonly as ‘Joshua’ for anyone else with that name (see Luke 3:29;  Acts 7:45;  Hebrews 4:8).  So in English the name Jesus became unique for Jesus of Nazareth, the Son of God, the Saviour of the world.

These brutal and mysterious events transformed the lives of the people involved and changed the history of the world.

Eye-witnesses wrote their reports on parchments in the Greek language, now incorporated into the New Testament, the most translated and most read book in the world.  All or part of it is translated into over 3,000 languages and the whole Bible translated into over 670 languages.  I use the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) in this book with other translations added occasionally.

This story covers the most momentous events in history because it not only affected those involved but also changed the lives and eternal destiny of countless millions through history.

Events in this book are reproduced in more detail in my book The Lion of JudahThere I include extra passages, some from Paul’s letters and from various passages in the New Testament including The Revelation.

In this book, I reproduce Bible passages in italics. These passages, translated from the original eye-witness reports, tell the astounding story.

Matthew, Mark and John saw it personally.  Luke gathered his reports from eye-witnesses for his two books, the Gospel of Luke and The Acts of the Apostles.

Paul wrote: For the message about the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.  (1 Corinthians 1:18)

John penned the famous words: God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son so that whoever believes in him will not perish but will have everlasting life.  (John 3:16)

SUMMARY OF EVENTS

The Last Supper

Preparation of the Passover – Mt 26:17-19   Mk 14:12-16   Lk 22:7-13
Washing the disciples’ feet – Jn 13:1-17
The breaking of bread – Mt 26:26   Mk 14:22   Lk 22:19
‘One of you shall betray me’ –  Mt 26:21   Mk 14:18   Lk 22:21    Jn 13:21
‘Is it I ?’ – Mt 26:22-25   Mk 14:19
Giving of the dipped bread – Jn 13:26-27
Departure of Judas Iscariot – Jn 13:30
Peter warned – Mt 26:34  Mk 14:30   Lk 22:34   Jn 13:38
Blessing the cup – Mt 26:27,28   Mk 14:23,24   Lk 22:17
The discourses after supper – Jn 14:1-16:33
Christ’s prayer for his apostles – Jn 17:1-17:26
The hymn – Mt 26:30   Mk 14:26

Gethsemane and Trials

The agony – Mt 26:37   Mk 14:33   Lk 22:39   Jn 18:1
The thrice-repeated prayer – Mt 26:39-44   Mk 14:36-39   Lk 22:42
Sweat and angel support – Lk 22:43,44
The sleep of the apostles – Mt 26:40-45   Mk 14:37-41   Lk 22:45,46
Betrayal by Judas – Mt 26:47-50   Mk 14:34,44   Lk 22:47   Jn 18:2-5
Peter smites Malchus – Mt 26:51   Mk 14:47   Lk 22:50   Jn 18:10
Jesus heals the ear of Malchus – Lk 22:51
Jesus forsaken by disciples – Mt 26:56   Mk 14:50
1) Trial with Annas – Jn 18:12,13
2) Trial with Caiaphas – Mt 26:57   Mk 14:53   Lk 22:54   Jn 18:15
Peter follows Jesus – Mt 26:58   Mk 14:54   Lk 22:55   Jn 18:15
The high priest’s adjuration – Mt 26:63   Mk 14:61
Jesus condemned, buffeted, mocked – Mt 26:66-67   Mk 14:64-65   Lk 22:63-65
Peter’s denial of Christ – Mt 26:69-75   Mk 14:66-72   Lk 22:54-62   Jn 18:17-27
3) Trial with Pilate – Mt 27:1,2   Mk 15:1   Lk 23:1-4   Jn 18:28
Repentance of Judas – Mt 27:3
Pilate comes out to the people – Jn 18:29-32
Pilate speaks to Jesus privately – Jn 18:33-38
4) Trial with  Herod – Lk 23:5-11
Jesus mocked, arrayed in purple – Lk 23:5-11
5) Trial with Pilate, scourged – Mt 27:26   Mk 15:15   Jn 19:1
Jesus crowned with thorns – Mt 27:29   Mk 15:17   Jn 19:2
‘Behold the man’ – Jn 19:5
Jesus accused formally – Mt 27:11   Mk 15:2   Lk 23:2
‘Behold your King’ – Jn 19:14
Pilate desires to release him – Mt 27:15   Mk 15:6   Lk 23:17   Jn 19:12
Pilate’s wife message – Mt 27:19
Pilate washes his hands – Mt 27:24
Pilate releases Barabbas – Mt 27:26
Pilate delivers Jesus to be crucified – Mt 27:26   Mk 15:15   Lk 23:25   Jn 19:16

Crucifixion

Simon of Cyrene carries the cross – Mt 27:32   Mk 15:21   Lk 23:26
They give Jesus vinegar and gall – Mt 27:34   Mk 15:23   Lk 23:36
They nail him to the cross – Mt 27:35   Mk 15:24,25   Lk 23:33   Jn 19:18
The superscription – Mt 27:37   Mk 15:26   Lk 23:38   Jn 19:19
1) Father, forgive them – Lk 23:34
His garments shared – Mt 27:35   Mk 15:24   Lk 23:34   Jn 19:23
Passers-by and the two thieves revile –  Mt 27:39-44   Mk 15:29-32   Lk 23:35
The penitent thief – Lk 23:40
2) Today you will be with me … Lk 23:43
3) Woman, behold your son. … Jn 19:26,27
Darkness over all the land – Mt 27:45   Mk 15:33   Lk 23:44,45
4) My God, my God, why … ?  [Psalm 22:1]   Mt 27:46   Mk 15:34
5) I thirst – Jn 19:28  [Psalm 22:15 ;  69:3, 21]
The vinegar – Mt 27:48   Mk 15:36   Jn 19:29
6) It is finished – Jn 19:30   [It is accomplished]
7) Father, into your hands …  [Psalm 31:5]   Lk 23:46
Rending of the temple veil – Mt 27:51  Mk 15:38  Lk 23:45
Graves opened, saints resurrected – Mt 27:52
Testimony of Centurion – Mt 27:54  Mk 15:39  Lk 23:47
Watching of the women – Mt 27:55  Mk 15:40  Lk 23:49
The piercing of his side – Jn 19:34
Taken down from the cross – Mt 27:57-60  Mk 15:46  Lk 23:53  Jn 19:38-42
Burial by Joseph of Arimathea, Nicodemus – Mt 27:57-60  Mk 15:46  Lk 23:53  Jn 19:38-42
A guard placed over the sealed stone – Mt 27:65-66

Resurrection

Women carry spices to the tomb – Mt 28:1   Mk 16:1,2   Lk 24:1
The angel had rolled away the stone – Mt 28:2
Women announce the resurrection – Mt 28:8   Lk 24:9,10   Jn 20:1,2
Peter and John run to the tomb – Lk 24:12   Jn 20:3
The women return to the tomb – Lk 24:1
The guards report to the chief priests – Mt 28:11-15
12 APPEARANCES OF CHRIST
1) To Mary Magdalene – Mk 16:9,10   Jn 20:11-18
2) To the women returning home – Mt 28:9-10
3) To two disciples going to Emmaus – Mk 16:12   Lk 24:13-35
4) To Peter – Lk 24:34  1 Co 15:5
5) To ten Apostles in the upper room –  Lk 24:33   Jn 20:19-23
6) To eleven Apostles in the upper room – Mk 16:14   Jn 20:26-29
7) To 500 at once – 1 Cor 15:6
8) To James – 1 Cor 15:6
9) To disciples at the sea of Tiberias – Jn 21:1-23
10) To eleven disciples on a mountain in Galilee – Mt 28:16-20
11) Eating together in Jerusalem – Acts 1:4-5
12) The Ascension from the Mount of Olives – Mk 16:19   Lk 24:50-51   Acts 1:6-9

Jesus explained these events on the afternoon of his Resurrection Sunday:

 Then he said to them, ‘Oh, how foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have declared!  Was it not necessary that the Messiah should suffer these things and then enter into his glory?’  Then beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them the things about himself in all the scriptures.  …

Then he said to them, ‘These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you – that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.’  Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and he said to them, ‘Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.  You are witnesses of these things. 

(Luke 24:25-27; 44-48 NRSV)

Appendix 1 – alternate chronology
Appendix 2 – the shroud of Turin

Easter Resources

I was told by a distinguished rabbi about the ceremony when the Children of Israel presented lambs to the priest. The lamb would be impaled on a horizontal and vertical pole. Its back would be flayed to ensure it was a spotless lamb. None of its bones would be broken, and the blood would be drained from the lamb.
Does that sound familiar? The lamb was roasted on two poles forming a cross. Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God, was placed on a cross. His hands and feet were pierced, and none of His bones were broken. Jesus was crucified on the very day the Passover lambs were being offered up.
Dr Michael Evans (Jerusalem Prayer Team)


For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified (Hebrews 10:14).
And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19).


Alternate Chronology of the Crucifixion

Books


The Life of Jesus: History’s Great Love Story – Blog
The Life of Jesus: History’s Great Love Story – PDF

A Holy Week, Passover & Resurrection All1

A Holy_Week_Passover & Resurrection_Kindle

Holy Week, Christian Passover & Resurrection

The Death and Resurrection of Jesus

3 books in 1 volume

Holy Week, Passover & Resurrection – PDF
Alternate Chronology of the Crucifixion

Paperback and eBook on Amazon –

CONTENTS of this book (& 3 books)

1 Holy Week

Holy Week – PDF
READ SAMPLE

 A Holy Week All

This summary follows the outline in Mark’s Gospel.

This is an approximation:

Palm Sunday – Day of Demonstration – Mark 11:1-11 (Zech 9:9) – Jesus enters Jerusalem

Monday – Day of Authority – Mark 11:12-19 – fig tree, temple cleansed

Tuesday – Day of Conflict – Mark 11:20 – 13:36 – debates with leaders

Wednesday – Day of Preparation – Mark 14:1-11 – anointed at Bethany

Thursday – Day of Farewell – Mark 14:12-42 – last supper

Good Friday – Day of Crucifixion – Mark 14:43 – 15:47 – trials and death

Saturday – Day of Sabbath – Mark 15:46-47 – tomb sealed

Easter Sunday – Day of Resurrection – Mark 16:1-18 – resurrection appearances

Easter Friday It is finished

It is finished  –  It is accomplished
Alternate Chronology of the Crucifixion

2 Christian Passover

Christian Passover Service

A Retelling of the Last Supper

Christian Passover Service – PDF

READ SAMPLE

A Christian Passover All

  1. Lighting The Candles
  2. First Cup ‑ Cup Of Blessing
  3. Washing The Hands
  4. First Dipping ‑ Bitter Herb In Salt Water
  5. The Four Questions
  6. The Plagues
  7. Paschal Lamb, Unleavened Bread, Bitter Herb
  8. Second Cup ‑ Cup Of Thanksgiving
  9. Second Dipping ‑ The  Mixture (Charoseth)
  10. The Passover Meal
  11. Communion Instituted
  12. Third Cup ‑ Cup Of Redemption
  13. Fourth Cup ‑ Cup Of Praise
  14. The Great Praise ‑ Final Song
    This order of service for Passover is an attempt to be as true as possible to the historic one Jesus had with his disciples, with Christian explanations added.

Resurrection

RISEN: short version

Risen –_PDF

READ SAMPLE

A Risen All Short

Preface

A Mysterious Month

Resurrection Sunday

Forty Days

Photos from the longer version

Addendum: The Old City of Jerusalem

See also:  Risen! : longer version
Risen! –_
PDF

A Risen! All

Part 1: A Mysterious Month, gives the full eye-witness accounts of 12 resurrection appearances. The contents of RISEN – shorter version – now also included in this book,

Holy Week, Christian Passover & Resurrection.

Part 2: Our Month in Israel, gives my reflections on walking where Jesus walked, with photos of those locations. Not included in Holy Week, Christian Passover & Resurrection.

See also: Mysterious Month
Mysterious Month – 
PDF

0 A Mysterious Month All3

Expanded contents of RISEN! – the longer version

with more details and photos of Jerusalem in Part 2.

See also:

Blog:  Holy Week – the greatest week in history

Crucified and Risen: The Easter Story
Crucified & Risen – PDF
Alternate Chronology of the Crucifixion

 

A 4 Death of Jesus
The Death of Jesus – Blog
The Death of Jesus – PDF
Alternate Chronology of the Crucifixion

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BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

BLOGS INDEX 7: IMAGES (PHOTOS AND ALBUMS)

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The Meaning of Easter

The Meaning of Easter

A message outline you may like to use or adapt

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Message Outline, 4 March 2018 – by Nick Kikuchi, Riverlife Baptist Church, Brisbane.
Message given at the Easy English service for overseas visitors.

Easter Friday lamb

Love Declared · Love Demonstrated  –  The Meaning of Easter

Easter Today
* Easter is one of the two biggest Western festivities, along with Christmas.
* Pagan (non-christian religions) celebration of re-birth of the earth in the spring was combined into Easter Festivities. (like bunnies and eggs)
* Lots of celebrations and even non-christian celebration. (egg hunt, Easter Bunny)
* Easter is a Christian Festival and it celebrates the Resurrection (come back to life) of Jesus after His death on the cross.

Easter is Related to the Jewish Festival of Passover

* Passover is the most important Jewish festival.
Jesus celebrated 
Passover every year. Jesus died on Passover weekend.

* History of Passover (Exodus 1-12)

1. Slavery (bondage) of Israelites in Egypt in 1700BC.
2. Moses’ job to free Israelites from Egypt and God’s ten disasters to Egypt. (Exodus 7-11)
3. Tenth disaster (different from others) – the death of the firstborn (Exodus 12:5-14) and an act of faith was needed by Israelites.
(a) Free from bondage needed a substitution of payment.
(b) Unblemished (perfect) lamb to be sacrificed (killed) and blood to be put on the pillars of entry. (Exodus 12:5-7)
(c) They feasted on roasted lamb, herbs and hard bread.
(d) Anticipate the liberty and be ready to leave. (Exodus 12:11)
(e) Angels of death passed over the entry ways marked with blood of lamb. (Exocus 12:12-13)
(f) People celebrated passing over and being free.
(g) It became a festival, remembering this great day. (Exodus 12:14)
4. It was a model of Great Salvation to all human beings.
5. Passover showed that substitute Death is needed for salvation.
What Happened in the original Easter Week? (2000 years ago – AD30)

* Jesus celebrated Passover.

*The last year of His life, the last P
assover (Matthew 26-27)
1. He taught disciples extensive teaching.
I am going 
away but believe in me. (John 15)
2. He had the Last Supper and told them to do this in memory of Jesus.
(Matthew 26:26-31)
3. Jesus lived a sinless life. (1 John 3:5-6)
4. Jesus was killed on the cross and His blood was placed on the
cross.
5. Whoever believed in Jesus’ blood on the cross (that He is God in Man to die on the cross for our sin and his death will save us from God’s wrath) will be saved. (1 John 1:7; John 3:16)

* He came back to life (Matthew 28:6) to prove He won against
sin and death. Proof that He is God, who has power to save us. (Romans 6:9)

* We celebrate His resurrection because Jesus has done it all. We
don’t have to do anything. We are saved if we believe He is our personal Saviour.

God’s Master Plan to Save Humans from Sin and Death
* Passover was a model to show what is to come. (Hebrews 10:11)
* Easter Passion Week – death of Jesus on the cross was the real substitute death that lambs in the past have represented.
* Similarity:
1. Unblemished lamb vs sinless man (God in Him – Lamb of God).
2. Both killed.
3. Blood on the door pole vs blood on the cross.
4. Believing gave liberation from slavery vs believing gives liberation from the slavery and curse of sin and death.
5. Israel became a nation of God to bless other nations vs Christian became saved people to give Good News to the world.

* Key Points
1. Jesus is God in human body (incarnated God).
2. Jesus lived a sinless life.
3. Jesus died for our sins to pay the sin’s debt and came back to life to guarantee it.
4. Jesus is offering His guarantees to anyone who believes in Him our Saviour and Lord.

Discussion Questions
1. What are the similarities between Christmas and Easter?
2. What is the meaning of Passover?
3. What are the similarities and the differences between Passover and
Easter?
4. What does Easter mean to you?

communion-bread-wine2

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The Kingdom of God

Washing the disciples’ feet – Max Griener sculpture

The Kingdom of God

 The Spirit of the Lord is working in the earth to bring the kingdom of God to bear in our lives and in the world.  God’s kingdom is both a future state in its fulfilment, but also manifested now.  The kingdom of God was the central theme in Jesus’ ministry.

Jesus proclaimed and demonstrated God’s kingdom. 

The kingdom of God refers to God’s sovereign rule, not a geographical realm nor a political reign.

Jesus’ ministry demonstrated the kingdom of God coming on earth with salvation, healing, wholeness, liberty and transformation.  His church is meant to demonstrate the kingdom of God.  Jesus told us to pray for that: Your kingdom come.  Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

These gospel passages indicate Jesus’ strong emphasis on the kingdom of God:

Mark 1:14‑15, the kingdom is near; repent and believe.

John 3:3‑5, be born again to see the kingdom.

Matthew 6:10, pray, your kingdom come.

Matthew 6:33, seek first the kingdom.

Matthew 12:28, the kingdom has already come.

Matthew 13:11, the secrets of the kingdom.

Matthew 16:19, the keys of the kingdom.

Matthew 19:14, the kingdom belongs to the childlike.

Matthew 19:24, difficulties of entering the kingdom.

Matthew 21:31, repentant sinners enter the kingdom.

Luke 6:20, the kingdom belongs to the poor.

Luke 9:2, 11, 60, demonstrating the kingdom.  

Luke 12:32‑34, the Father gives the kingdom.

Luke 17:20‑21, the kingdom is within you.

These statements about the kingdom of God demonstrate the presence of the Spirit of the Lord in Jesus’ ministry.  God’s Spirit, powerfully present in Jesus’ ministry, brought the kingdom to bear in the lives of people, saving, freeing, healing, and delivering from demonic oppression.  Eventually it affected political decisions concerning justice and liberty, confronting and overcoming demonic oppression in people and in society.  Society was transformed from within, just as individuals’ lives were transformed from within by the power of the Spirit of the Lord.  Jesus declared this to be the work and evidence of the kingdom of God (Matthew 12:28).

The church proclaimed and demonstrated God’s kingdom.

The following passages tell a little of the emphasis of the early church on the kingdom of God:

Acts 1:3, Jesus continued to teach on the kingdom.

Acts 8:12, Philip preached and demonstrated the kingdom.  

Acts 14:22, the kingdom involves us in trials.

Acts 19:8, Paul discussed the kingdom.

Acts 28:23, 31, Paul continued to preach the kingdom.

Romans 14:17, the kingdom is righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

1 Corinthians 4:20, the kingdom is not just words but power.

1 Corinthians 6:9‑10, evil does not inherit the kingdom. 

1Corinthians 15:24, 50, Jesus will hand the kingdom to the Father. 

Galatians 5:21, kingdom life is pure and holy.

Ephesians 5:5, the kingdom belongs to the righteous. 

Colossians 4:11, working together for the kingdom.

2 Thessalonians 1:5, suffering for the kingdom.

Revelation 12:10, the kingdom will triumph over all evil.

Note again the themes of right relationships with God and with one another in the power of the Spirit of the Lord.  The power of God was seen in signs (of the kingdom), wonders (revealing the kingdom) and miracles (demonstrating the kingdom).  See, for example, Mark 16:17, 20; John 20:30; Acts 2:43; 4:30; 5:12; 6:8; 8:6; 13; 14:3; 15:12; 19:11.

The early church, like Jesus, saw the work of the kingdom in terms of confronting evil in the power of the Spirit of the Lord, the demonstration of that power, and the freeing of people from the powers of evil oppression, to live in the love, joy and peace of God’s kingdom.

For this we can pray (your kingdom come) and work (Colossians 4:11), till in the end the kingdoms of this world become the kingdom of our God and of his Christ, and he will reign for ever and ever (Revelation 11:15; 12:10-11).

 We proclaim and demonstrate God’s kingdom.

Response:  How is the kingdom of God revealed among us now?

You could testify to the transforming power of God’s reign.

 

Divine exchange


For by one sacrifice he has made perfect for ever those who are being made holy
(Hebrews 10:14 NIV).

And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19 NIV).

“I was told by a distinguished rabbi about the ceremony when the Children of Israel presented lambs to the priest. The lamb would be impaled on a horizontal and vertical pole. Its back would be flayed to ensure it was a spotless lamb. None of its bones would be broken, and the blood would be drained from the lamb.
“Does that sound familiar? The lamb was roasted on two poles forming a cross. Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God, was placed on a cross. His hands and feet were pierced, and none of His bones were broken. Jesus was crucified on the very day the Passover lambs were being offered up.”
Dr Michael Evans (Jerusalem Prayer Team)

 

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