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Has no one else realized the glaring contradiction in that Jesus said he would be in the grave for three days when he actually rose within two?
I don't believe there are any contradictions in the Bible, so we should try to make sense of this. Matthew 12:40 says, "As Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth." So we know he was dead 72 hours. He rose from the grave on Sunday morning, John 20:1: "The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken awyay from the sepulchre." 72 hours before sunday morning is thursday morning.
Also, Jewish days are measured differently than days today. As I'm sure many people are aware, Jews measured days from one sundown to the next sundown. So rather than 12:00 to 12:00 we must count the third day from the night before. If he died Wednesday afternoon, and was buried that evening, than to be "in the heart of the earth" for three days AND THREE NIGHTS, he would then rise Sunday morning.
Now people argue this because there is a verse saying that he had to be taken off the cross before the sabbath. There are no contradictions in the Bible. Only in man's traditions which they set up. John 19:31, "The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the sabbath day, (for that sabbath day was an high day,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away." (emphasis mine) Remember that there is more than one sabbath day. Leviticus 23:4-8 says,
- "These are the feasts of the LORD, even holy convocations, which ye shall proclaim in their seasons. In the fourteenth day of the first month at even is the LORD's passover. And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the feast of unleavened bread unto the LORD: seven days ye must eat unleavened bread. In the first day ye shall have an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein. But ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD seven days: in the seventh day is an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein."
So this was a special sabbath. Not the regular saturday sabbath but a Sabbath during the passover week. It fell on a thursday, so they had to take the bodies down off the crosses before Wednesday evening.
See how the Bible makes sense when you read it all together? In its own context, with the combined old and new testaments, there is eternal truth in the Scripture.--Steve 17:46, 10 April 2009 (EDT)