Copyright 1994 - 2018 Bill's Bible Basics
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Published On :
March 19, 2018
Last Updated :
March 31, 2018
Solving Biblical Mysteries, Jesus' First Appearance Before His Disciples Following His Resurrection From The Dead, The Lord Breathes The Holy Ghost On The Disciples, Forty Days Of Undeniable Proof, Final Instructions And Ascension, The Day Of Pentecost And Outpouring Of The Holy Ghost, Three Major New Testament Events In Rapid Succession, Apostle Paul Gives An Account Of Jesus' Appearances, Timing Of Pentecost: The Fiftieth Day, Foreshadows And Archetypes, Three Important Israelite Feasts, Nisan And Tishri, Feast Of Tabernacles Or Sukkot, Our Tabernacle Of Flesh And Eventual Transformation, Pentecost Feast, Fifty Days From The Passover To Pentecost, God Mandates Passover And Feast Of Unleavened Bread, The Last Supper Was Held At Beginning Of Passover On Nisan 14, Jesus Became The Final Passover Lamb, Jewish Elders Hold A Hasty Late-Night Mock Trial, Did Judas Force The Priests' Hands?
Do you like Biblical mysteries? I most certainly do. One Biblical mystery which puzzled me for quite a few years, concerns the following set of verses which are found in the Gospel of John. This event occurred immediately following the Lord's Resurrection from the Dead, and that same first evening while the Disciples were in hiding behind locked doors, due to their fear of the Jews:
"Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord. Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you. And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:"
John 20:19-22, KJV
If you are familiar with the Book of Acts, and specifically with what occurred in Acts chapters one and two, then you will no doubt see how the previous verses in John appear to be at odds with what occurred on the Day of Pentecost. Allow me to share with you those verses from Acts so you can see what I am talking about. I have added one word in parentheses for the sake of clarification:
"To whom also he [Jesus] shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God: And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me. For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence."
Acts 1:3-5, KJV
"And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven."
Acts 1:9-11, KJV
"And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance . . . Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear."
Acts 2:1-4, 33, KJV
Please notice that the previous verses are found near the end of the Gospel of John, and in the first two chapters of the Book of Acts. Thus, it becomes apparent that these three major New Testament events -- that is, Jesus' Resurrection from the Dead, His final instructions to the Disciples and His Ascension to Heaven, and the Day of Pentecost and the Baptism by Fire -- were not separated by a very large amount of time. Exactly how much time transpired? Well, as I said, I tend to become very curious when it comes to Biblical mysteries, and I just love digging into the Scriptures in order to find an answer to my questions. So that is exactly what I did. Allow me to share with you what I discovered.
First of all, we know for certain that Jesus spent forty days appearing to His followers following His Resurrection from the Dead, and that the Day of Pentecost event occurred some time after that. We also know that the forty days began that very first evening when the Lord first appeared to His Disciples while they hid behind locked doors. In fact, the Apostle Paul offers an even more detailed account than Luke in his first Epistle to the brethren at Corinth. Paul writes as follows:
"For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time."
1 Corinthians 15:3-8, KJV
The second event -- that is, Christ's Ascension -- must have therefore occurred precisely on the fortieth day following our Lord's Resurrection from the Dead, because the writer Luke informs us that the Disciples watched as Jesus ascended to Heaven, after He had given them their final instructions regarding waiting in Jerusalem for the promise of the Holy Ghost.
It is the timing of the last event -- the Day of Pentecost and the Baptism by Fire -- which requires just a little bit more digging in order to unravel the mystery. As it turns out, the word "Pentecost" is derived from the Koine Greek word "pentekoste", which means "the fiftieth day". But what is the significance of the fiftieth day? As I explain in a number of other articles, many of the Old Testament events -- and rituals as well -- were actually foreshadows and archetypes of things which would later be fulfilled in the New Testament by Jesus Himself. They were schoolmasters which were meant to lead the Jews to faith in Jesus Christ.
For example, not long after their liberation from Egyptian bondage, through Moses, God instructed the Israelites to observe three important feasts during the course of the year, as we can determine by the following sets of verses which are found in the Book of Exodus:
"Three times thou shalt keep a feast unto me in the year. Thou shalt keep the feast of unleavened bread: (thou shalt eat unleavened bread seven days, as I commanded thee, in the time appointed of the month Abib; for in it thou camest out from Egypt: and none shall appear before me empty:) And the feast of harvest, the firstfruits of thy labours, which thou hast sown in the field: and the feast of ingathering, which is in the end of the year, when thou hast gathered in thy labours out of the field. Three times in the year all thy males shall appear before the Lord GOD."
Exodus 23:14-17, KJV
"The feast of unleavened bread shalt thou keep. Seven days thou shalt eat unleavened bread, as I commanded thee, in the time of the month Abib: for in the month Abib thou camest out from Egypt . . . And thou shalt observe the feast of weeks, of the firstfruits of wheat harvest, and the feast of ingathering at the year’s end. Thrice in the year shall all your men children appear before the Lord GOD, the God of Israel."
Exodus 34:18, 22-23, KJV
"Three times in a year shall all thy males appear before the LORD thy God in the place which he shall choose; in the feast of unleavened bread, and in the feast of weeks, and in the feast of tabernacles: and they shall not appear before the LORD empty:"
Deuteronomy 16:16, KJV
For the sake of clarification, today, the Biblical month of Abib -- or Aviv -- is known as the Jewish sacred month of Nisan. Being the first month of the Jewish sacred year, Nisan corresponds to March-April on the western Gregorian calendar. Prior to that time, Tishri was actually the first month of the year. However, today, Tishri is the seventh month of the Jewish civil calendar. This change was made by the Lord in the Book of Exodus to symbolize the Israelites' new beginning following their liberation from Egypt, as we can determine by the following verses:
"And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, This month shall be unto you the beginning of months: it shall be the first month of the year to you."
Exodus 12:1-2, KJV
"Observe the month of Abib, and keep the passover unto the LORD thy God: for in the month of Abib the LORD thy God brought thee forth out of Egypt by night."
Deuteronomy 16:1, KJV
The third feast mentioned above -- the Feast of Ingathering -- is also known as the Feast of Tabernacles, or the Feast of Booths. Observant Jews call it Sukkot. Similar to the Feast of Unleavened Bread, it lasts for seven days, and it occurs in the seventh Jewish month of Tishri, which on our Western calendar corresponds to September-October. This feast commemorates the Israelites' wandering in the desert for a period of forty years, during which time they had no certain dwelling place. It also relates to the temporary dwellings in which Israelite farmers would live during the time of the harvest. Consider the following verses:
"And thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in Egypt: and thou shalt observe and do these statutes. Thou shalt observe the feast of tabernacles seven days, after that thou hast gathered in thy corn and thy wine: And thou shalt rejoice in thy feast, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite, the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, that are within thy gates. Seven days shalt thou keep a solemn feast unto the LORD thy God in the place which the LORD shall choose: because the LORD thy God shall bless thee in all thine increase, and in all the works of thine hands, therefore thou shalt surely rejoice."
Deuteronomy 16:12-15, KJV
In a spiritual sense, the parallel which I see with Sukkot is that just as the Israelites wandered in the desert for forty years, living in tents, so too, we Christians wander this Earth in our tents -- or houses -- of flesh and blood, just waiting for the day when we will put off the flesh, and receive our new, glorified bodies. This Scriptural truth is made evident by verses such as the following:
"For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle [meaning our physical body] were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked. For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life."
2 Corinthians 5:1-4, KJV
"And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after; But Christ as a son over his own house; WHOSE HOUSE ARE WE, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end."
Hebrews 3:5-6, KJV
"Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:"
Romans 6:4-5, KJV
"For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren."
Romans 8:29, KJV
"Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself."
Philippians 3:21, KJV
"Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is."
1 John 3:2, KJV
"There are also celestial bodies, and bodies terrestrial: but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is another. There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars: for one star differeth from another star in glory. So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven. As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly. Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption. Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed."
1 Corinthians 15:40-52, KJV
But what we really want to concentrate on are the other two major feasts; that is, Passover and Pentecost. As it turns out, the Pentecost feast was -- and still is -- held seven weeks after the Passover, in recognition of the completion of the harvest. More specifically, Pentecost -- which is also known as the Feast of Weeks, the Feast of Harvest, or "Shavuoth" to the Jews -- is held on the sixth day of the Jewish sacred month of Sivan. Sivan is the third sacred month. It corresponds to May-June on the Western calendar. So as I was saying, Pentecost occurs exactly fifty days after the second day of Passover. This fifty-day period between the Feast of Passover and the Day of Pentecost is based on the following Old Testament verses:
"And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come into the land which I give unto you, and shall reap the harvest thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest unto the priest: And he shall wave the sheaf before the LORD, to be accepted for you: on the morrow after the sabbath the priest shall wave it . . . And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths shall be complete: Even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall offer a new meat offering unto the LORD."
Leviticus 23:9-11, 15-16, KJV
"Seven weeks shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeks from such time as thou beginnest to put the sickle to the corn. And thou shalt keep the feast of weeks unto the LORD thy God with a tribute of a freewill offering of thine hand, which thou shalt give unto the LORD thy God, according as the LORD thy God hath blessed thee: And thou shalt rejoice before the LORD thy God, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite that is within thy gates, and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, that are among you, in the place which the LORD thy God hath chosen to place his name there."
Deuteronomy 16:9-11, KJV
The Day of Pentecost is likewise known as the Day of Firstfruits. So it is a "jubilee" of fifty days from the second day of Passover to Pentecost. Incidentally, it was also in the fiftieth jubilee year that the Jews were to be freed of all previous debts, according to the mandates of the Old Testament. Now, if you are wondering why the Jews start counting the fifty days to Pentecost from the second day of Passover, instead of from the first day of Passover, it is probably for the following reason. The Passover meal -- or seder -- was eaten following sunset as Nisan 13 ended and Nisan 14 began. This is when they sacrificed and ate the Passover lamb, along with unleavened bread and bitter herbs. However, it wasn't until the second day -- that is, Nisan 15 -- when they actually began leaving Egypt, as we can see by the following verse:
"And they departed from Rameses in the first month, on the fifteenth day of the first month; ON THE MORROW AFTER THE PASSOVER the children of Israel went out with an high hand in the sight of all the Egyptians."
Numbers 33:3, KJV
As you will see momentarily, by closely examining the New Testament Scriptures, we also discover that just as occurred during the Old Testament era, Jesus held His final meal -- which many Christians refer to as the Last Supper -- on the Passover, or Nissan 14. The next day -- Nissan 15 -- would begin the seven-day Feast of Unleavened Bread. These were in fact two back-to-back events. The Jews refer to the Passover as "Pesach". This observance was established by the Lord in the Book of Exodus, and was also reiterated in the Books of Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy, as we can determine by the following groups of verses:
"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."
Leviticus 23:5-8, KJV
"Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house: And if the household be too little for the lamb, let him and his neighbour next unto his house take it according to the number of the souls; every man according to his eating shall make your count for the lamb. Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats: And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening. And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it. And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it. Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with fire; his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof. And ye shall let nothing of it remain until the morning; and that which remaineth of it until the morning ye shall burn with fire. And thus shall ye eat it; with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and ye shall eat it in haste: it is the LORD’S passover. For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the LORD. And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt. And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the LORD throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever. Seven days shall ye eat unleavened bread; even the first day ye shall put away leaven out of your houses: for whosoever eateth leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that soul shall be cut off from Israel. And in the first day there shall be an holy convocation, and in the seventh day there shall be an holy convocation to you; no manner of work shall be done in them, save that which every man must eat, that only may be done of you. And ye shall observe the feast of unleavened bread; for in this selfsame day have I brought your armies out of the land of Egypt: therefore shall ye observe this day in your generations by an ordinance for ever. In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at even, ye shall eat unleavened bread, until the one and twentieth day of the month at even. Seven days shall there be no leaven found in your houses: for whosoever eateth that which is leavened, even that soul shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he be a stranger, or born in the land. Ye shall eat nothing leavened; in all your habitations shall ye eat unleavened bread."
Exodus 12:3-20, KJV
"And in the fourteenth day of the first month is the passover of the LORD. And in the fifteenth day of this month is the feast: seven days shall unleavened bread be eaten. In the first day shall be an holy convocation; ye shall do no manner of servile work therein: But ye shall offer a sacrifice made by fire for a burnt offering unto the LORD; two young bullocks, and one ram, and seven lambs of the first year: they shall be unto you without blemish: And their meat offering shall be of flour mingled with oil: three tenth deals shall ye offer for a bullock, and two tenth deals for a ram; A several tenth deal shalt thou offer for every lamb, throughout the seven lambs: And one goat for a sin offering, to make an atonement for you. Ye shall offer these beside the burnt offering in the morning, which is for a continual burnt offering. After this manner ye shall offer daily, throughout the seven days, the meat of the sacrifice made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the LORD: it shall be offered beside the continual burnt offering, and his drink offering. And on the seventh day ye shall have an holy convocation; ye shall do no servile work."
Numbers 28:16-25, KJV
"Thou shalt therefore sacrifice the passover unto the LORD thy God, of the flock and the herd, in the place which the LORD shall choose to place his name there. Thou shalt eat no leavened bread with it; seven days shalt thou eat unleavened bread therewith, even the bread of affliction; for thou camest forth out of the land of Egypt in haste: that thou mayest remember the day when thou camest forth out of the land of Egypt all the days of thy life. And there shall be no leavened bread seen with thee in all thy coast seven days; neither shall there any thing of the flesh, which thou sacrificedst the first day at even, remain all night until the morning. Thou mayest not sacrifice the passover within any of thy gates, which the LORD thy God giveth thee: But at the place which the LORD thy God shall choose to place his name in, there thou shalt sacrifice the passover at even, at the going down of the sun, at the season that thou camest forth out of Egypt. And thou shalt roast and eat it in the place which the LORD thy God shall choose: and thou shalt turn in the morning, and go unto thy tents. Six days thou shalt eat unleavened bread: and on the seventh day shall be a solemn assembly to the LORD thy God: thou shalt do no work therein."
Deuteronomy 16:2-8, KJV
As I mentioned earlier, many Old Testament events and rituals were foreshadows and archetypes of things which would later be fulfilled in the New Testament by Jesus. As I explain in other articles, Jesus thus became God's final Passover Lamb, whose blood was shed for the sins of the world. Consider the following verses which are found in all four Gospels, which reveal Jesus' direct connection to the Passover feast.
"Ye know that after two days is the feast of the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified . . . Now the first day of the feast of unleavened bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare for thee to eat the passover? And he said, Go into the city to such a man, and say unto him, The Master saith, My time is at hand; I will keep the passover at thy house with my disciples. And the disciples did as Jesus had appointed them; and they made ready the passover. Now when the even was come, he sat down with the twelve."
Matthew 26:2, 17-20, KJV
"After two days was the feast of the passover, and of unleavened bread: and the chief priests and the scribes sought how they might take him by craft, and put him to death . . . And the first day of unleavened bread, when they killed the passover, his disciples said unto him, Where wilt thou that we go and prepare that thou mayest eat the passover? And he sendeth forth two of his disciples, and saith unto them, Go ye into the city, and there shall meet you a man bearing a pitcher of water: follow him. And wheresoever he shall go in, say ye to the goodman of the house, The Master saith, Where is the guestchamber, where I shall eat the passover with my disciples? And he will shew you a large upper room furnished and prepared: there make ready for us. And his disciples went forth, and came into the city, and found as he had said unto them: and they made ready the passover. And in the evening he cometh with the twelve."
Mark 14:1, 12-17, KJV
"Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called the Passover . . . Then came the day of unleavened bread, when the passover must be killed. And he sent Peter and John, saying, Go and prepare us the passover, that we may eat. And they said unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare? And he said unto them, Behold, when ye are entered into the city, there shall a man meet you, bearing a pitcher of water; follow him into the house where he entereth in. And ye shall say unto the goodman of the house, The Master saith unto thee, Where is the guestchamber, where I shall eat the passover with my disciples? And he shall shew you a large upper room furnished: there make ready. And they went, and found as he had said unto them: and they made ready the passover. And when the hour was come, he sat down, and the twelve apostles with him."
Luke 22:1, 7-14, KJV
"Now before the feast of the passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end. And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him;"
John 13:1-2, KJV
"Then led they Jesus from Caiaphas unto the hall of judgment: and it was early; and they themselves went not into the judgment hall, lest they should be defiled; but that they might eat the passover . . . But ye have a custom, that I should release unto you one at the passover: will ye therefore that I release unto you the King of the Jews?"
John 18:28, 39, KJV
"And it was the preparation of the passover, and about the sixth hour: and he saith unto the Jews, Behold your King! But they cried out, Away with him, away with him, crucify him. Pilate saith unto them, Shall I crucify your King? The chief priests answered, We have no king but Caesar. Then delivered he him therefore unto them to be crucified. And they took Jesus, and led him away."
John 19:14-16, KJV
Please notice the chronological sequence of events. As the first day of the seven-day Feast of Unleavened Bread drew near, Jesus sent Peter and John into Jerusalem in order to prepare the Passover feast. Later that very same evening -- that is, at the beginning of Nisan 14 -- they shared their final meal together, after which Judas betrayed Jesus, and the Lord was apprehended in the Garden of Gethsemane. Then, under the thick cover of darkness, those crafty Scribes and Pharisees held a late-night, hasty mock trial in which they condemned Jesus to death. However, being as they were not allowed to kill Jesus themselves, they took Him to Pilate's hall of judgment early the next morning, so that he would do the dirty work for them.
It is interesting to note that according to what is stated in two of the Gospels, the Scribes and the Pharisees did not want to arrest and murder Jesus during the Passover feast. Apparently, they wanted to wait, because they were concerned that doing so would cause too much of an uproar amongst the people. This becomes evident in these two groups of verses:
"Then assembled together the chief priests, and the scribes, and the elders of the people, unto the palace of the high priest, who was called Caiaphas, And consulted that they might take Jesus by subtilty, and kill him. But they said, Not on the feast day, lest there be an uproar among the people."
Matthew 26:3-5, KJV
"After two days was the feast of the passover, and of unleavened bread: and the chief priests and the scribes sought how they might take him by craft, and put him to death. But they said, Not on the feast day, lest there be an uproar of the people."
Mark 14:1-2, KJV
Please note that the Passover itself -- Nisan 14 -- is not a High Sabbath, or a feast day. It is the evening ceremonial meal -- or seder -- which immediately precedes the seven-day Feast of Unleavened Bread. However, despite their intentions, God obviously had other plans. His plans were that Jesus die as the final Passover Lamb on a very specific day of the year. As the Apostle Paul writes in his first Epistle to the brethren at Corinth:
"Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us:"
1 Corinthians 5:7, KJV
Exactly what event transpired to force the hand of the religious elders, I am not certain. However, I suspect that the key factor may possibly have been Judas Iscariot. After all, Judas knew exactly where Jesus would be that night. So perhaps the Scribes and the Pharisees looked at the situation as a golden opportunity which they could not afford to miss. Thus, they were willing to take the chance of upsetting the people, particularly Jesus' followers.
Please go to part two for the conclusion of this article.
⇒ Go To The Next Part . . .