Not that it is of any great concern, but most folks don’t know that Jesus was crucified on a Wednesday, not Friday. The important thing is that we recognize the significance of His sacrifice and resurrection. That significance is, I trust, expounded from the pulpits of all Christendom and will not be addressed here.
If you are interested in the Wednesday thing, you have to begin with the understanding of how the Jews (Hebrews or Israelites) have counted their days for thousands of years. As described in Genesis, evening was first and then morning. Therefore, their days begin and end at sunset. They still retain that tradition.
The Passover itself is a one day memorial feast to be observed throughout all generations symbolizing the final plague that freed the children of Israel from their bondage in Egypt. The obedience of marking their homes with the blood of a sacrificial lamb had delivered them from the death plague that punished the Egyptians.
Next, you need to go to Leviticus to look at the descriptions of the feast days that were given to Moses. Those special feasts to God were given names like the feast of unleavened bread, the feast of first fruits and the feast of trumpets.
In that 23rd chapter of Leviticus, the Passover is to be observed on the fourteenth day of a certain month with no regard as to what day of the week that may be.
The very next day is to be the first day of a seven day feast of unleavened bread…. That day and the last day of the feast are to be special sabbaths in which no servile work is to be done. With the fifteenth day being a sabbath, the Passover day must also be the day for preparation of food.
Here we have a time line.
Tuesday at sunset (our terminology, but the beginning of the fourteenth day of that particular Passover month for the children of Israel) …
Since this began the fourteenth day of that particular month for Jesus and the disciples, they participated in the Passover meal after dark.
Following the meal and a time of sharing, they went to the garden from whence Jesus was eventually carried away to be interrogated by the religious leaders.
The course of events through the night and into the morning hours led to the beating of Jesus and a Roman death sentence.
The waning hours of that fourteenth day of the month for the Jews (Wednesday afternoon for us)…
Jesus died on the cross, and Joseph of Arimathaea placed the body in the tomb at sunset.
Jesus had participated in the Passover meal and had become the ultimate Passover sacrifice in one twenty four period of time.
Thursday, daylight hours for us…
The women would be unable to obtain and prepare spices for Jesus’ body because that day would be a day of no servile work. Only the gospel of John makes note of that day being a special sabbath. This is probably because the other writers knew it would have been common knowledge among the Jews for centuries.
The daylight hours of our Friday….
It was permissible for the women to obtain and prepare the spices, but apparently they did not have time to visit the tomb and return before sunset. At that time the regular sabbath of the seventh day of the week would begin.
The daylight hours of our Saturday….
The women were restricted from their task of anointing Jesus’ body.
Sunset on our Saturday….
Jesus left the tomb….
Wednesday sunset… Jesus was placed in the tomb.
Thursday sunset…… Day One
Friday sunset……….. Day Two
Saturday sunset……. Day Three… He Is Alive
One thing is certain……… Since John made a point to emphasize the day following the crucifixion was not the regular seventh day sabbath……… “Good Friday” could not have been the day.