Two Sabbaths

Most bibles do not have the original rendering of the passages that refer to the resurrection of Christ.  Sometimes, the original Greek word  s a b b a t w n "sabbaton" which means Sabbaths, (plural, more than one) has been rendered singular.

In the period of time between Christ's death and His resurrection there were two Sabbaths.  The first one was the annual Sabbath on Nisan 15 (Passover Feast), and the second one was the weekly Sabbath that fell on Nisan 17.  There was a day between those two Sabbaths in which the women went to buy spices to prepare the body of Christ (Mark 16:1).

We include a timeline so the reader can easily visualize the days between Yeshua/Jesus' death and His resurrection.

Chronology of Christ's burial and resurrection

Also, the reference to the day the women came to the tomb has been translated as "the first day of the week," but the original Greek does not say that; the original Greek is  mia  twn  sabbatwn  "mia ton sabbaton," which means  "First of Sabbaths."  This expression, which has been incorrectly translated as "Sunday" or "the first day of the week," actually refers to the wave sheaf offering.  The wave sheaf offering was a yearly offering made to God from the first grains of the harvest and it always falls on the first Sunday after Passover.  

Jesus was resurrected on the day of the wave sheaf offering because He is the wave sheaf offering.

See our file The Resurrection.

Let us look into the actual passages and see what they say:

Mark 16:1   So when the Sabbath [singular] had passed Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James and Salome purchased spices in order to come and grease him.

The Sabbath that had passed was the annual Sabbath of Nisan 15.  See our file Annual Jewish Holy Days.

Mary Magdalene brought spices

The women bought spices on Nisan 16, the day after Passover Feast.

Luke 23:56  and they went back to prepare spices and  perfumed oils, but of course, they rested on the Sabbath according to the commandment.

They rested on the weekly Sabbath which fell that year on Nisan 17 --the day after they bought and prepared the spices.  The weekly Sabbath is one of the most holy of all Sabbaths, except for Yom Kippur.  In the weekly Sabbath no work can be done according to the 4th commandment in the Law of Ten Commandments.

It was growing light when Mary Magdalene approached the tomb of Christ

Matthew 28:1  After the Sabbaths [plural], when it was growing light on the "first of Sabbaths", Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to view the grave.

Remember, the phrase "First of Sabbaths" does not refer to Nisan 15; it refers to the 18th of Nisan, which is the first annual Sabbath of a period of seven weeks ending in Pentecost.  See our file The Resurrection.

But the fact that this verse, Matthew 28:1, mentions "after the sabbaths," (plural) shows that there was more than one Sabbath between Yeshua's death and His resurrection.  Therefore, after the two Sabbaths (the 15th and the 17th of Nisan) had passed, when it was dawn of the "First of Sabbaths" (18th of Nisan), the women came to the tomb. 

Luke 24:1
But on the
First of Sabbaths, at early dawn, they came to the tomb carrying the spices which they had prepared, and certain [others] with them, 

Remember the women prepared the spices to embalm Jesus on the 16th of Nisan which fell on a Friday that year.  They rested on the 17th of Nisan, which was a weekly Sabbath and went to Jesus' sepulchre on the 18th, which was a Sunday.  That Sunday the women came to the tomb bringing the spices they had prepared.  See the above timeline.

In conclusion, we know that there were two Sabbaths in between Christ's burial and His resurrection -- one was an annual Sabbath, and the other was a weekly Sabbath.  The women kept the weekly Sabbath according to the commandment, as they always did, even after Christ died.

Our messiah and lord Jesus Christ was risen on the 18th of Nisan, in the day of the wave sheaf offering which always falls on a Sunday.   This is proof that He really was inside the "belly of the earth" for three days and three nights fulfilling the sign of Jonah the prophet as stated in the scriptures.  For more information on this topic read our file Sign of the Messiah.


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