Exposing Easter’s claims
How?? By research into their claim of 3 days and nights = proving Easter as fact or fiction?
Some people, the majority most of the time, just follow the religious leaders of our day, but I remember the Scripture says for the true Christian to be; “finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. 11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.” (Eph.5:10 & 11, NKJ)
Everyone knows the world of modern-day “Christianity” adheres to the idea of “Good Friday/Easter Sunday” and has for centuries. However, very few put forth the effort to find out if any or all of this claim is fact or fiction. Maybe people think they have to accept this nonsensical scene with “Easter bunny rabbits and colored eggs” and early Sunday services is the only way to have part in Christianity, but whatever the reason, it is very easy to see the falsehoods, if one wants to learn the truth. God, through Herbert W. Armstrong began to renew the zeal in the True COG members to study to find and prove truth from their own Bibles. It is a main driving force when used that comes with the Holy Spirit, for all true Christians.
Recently, in doing some research for a sermonette, (To be given the Sabbath day during “Easter weekend”, in fact and before the Passover for 2016) the purpose was to remind the local congregation where Easter actually came from and that any of its pagan practices are an abomination to God. So for part of my research, I decided to pull out the old booklet titled “The Plain Truth about Easter” by HWA and re-read it. Certainly that booklet is a very important tool in understanding one of the pagan traditions that have been palmed off on humanity as “Christian practices”, which are not Christian at all!
So, to refresh my own memory of some of the details, not only for something to possibly use in the sermonette, but to also have the contents of the booklet fresh in mind again! (I recommend using the booklet along with Scripture. I have found as the years go by, we all need that refreshing truth Satan has tried to keep hidden from our minds, through his false church.) I found the section on page 21, where the 3 days and three nights were explained to have actually been fulfilled, from a (Supposed) Friday crucifixion and (again supposed) early Sunday morning resurrection. (I say “supposed” on both aspects of this because neither are Biblical truth that anyone can honestly prove from Scripture, although many people have twisted various Scriptural texts with their attempts. Easter is pagan to the very core and is nothing but fiction; myths and ancient traditions of idolatry that God has already condemned, long before people tried to “Christianize” sun-worship and pagan doctrines!)
However, even after giving the sermonette locally, I felt inspired to do this article as well, so this is sharing some of what I have found from further research. In the booklet and the section I mentioned above, Mr. HWA gave that quote from what he named as the “Syriac Didascalia”, so I looked that up, in case there was more information than what HWA had used in the booklet. Sure enough, there was more and below is the quote HWA used; below that is from what was found on the internet by using Google; plus confirming accuracy of the quoted information Mr. HWA put in the booklet. (When first written, (©1957) that was hard to do because there was no internet and quick “Googling” of subjects, plus cut and past.)
“The idea that Friday was the day of our Lord’s crucifixion, and that Friday counted for two days and two nights, plus the Sabbath day “and three hours of night after the Sabbath, in which our Lord slept, fulfilled three days and three nights of The Son of Man passing in the heart of the earth”, is an ancient idea. The Didascalia is dated at least as far back as AD 250.”
So as we can immediately see from that quote, this stems from the ideas of men at least 220 years or so past the crucifixion, during the rise of false Christianity. Under unwitting Satan influenced minds, the god of this world (2 Cor.4:3-4) was working through the bishops of Rome to establish a counterfeit “Christian” religion, by misappropriating the name of Christ, just as Christ Himself had prophesied (Matt.24;4-5) and in doing so, were actually denying the true Christ and only sign given of the true Messiah, as we will see. There is more to learn from this Catholic document, about how deceitful this really is and how twisted with deception in the minds that put it together really were! (Some other ideas and counting methods have surfaced down through time, but are all false.) Let us notice further from what is in this document; Emphasis mine and cutting into the context to save space, but the quote is word for word from this writing.
“And Judas came with the scribes and with the priests of the people, and delivered up our Lord Jesus.” (So this part seems to be in accordance with John 18:2-4. However note what is recorded next, paying careful attention to all the wording, which I will comment on after the full quote and the emphasis made)
“But this was on a Wednesday, for when we had eaten the Passover on Tuesday in the evening, (After sunset) we went out to the Mount of Olives, and in the night they took our Lord Jesus; (This part seems to be according to Scriptural revelation) and on the next day, which was Wednesday, He remained in prison in the house of Cepha the High Priest. In that day the chiefs of the people were assembled, and they took counsel together against Him. Again, the next day, which was Thursday, they brought Him to Pilate the governor, and again He remained in prison with Pilate, in the night after Thursday. And when it dawned on Friday, they accused Him much before Pilate, yet they could show nothing true, but they brought false witness against Him. And they asked Him from Pilate, to put Him to death, and they crucified Him on Friday. At six o’clock therefore on Friday He suffered, and these hours during which our Lord was crucified have been reckoned a day, afterwards it was again dark for three hours, and it was reckoned a night; and again from the ninth hour till the evening, three hours, a day; and again afterwards the night of passion Sabbath;”--end of quoting.
So there is some of one elaborate ruse, concocted or fictionalized by the bishops of Rome (along with a small grain of truth) to support their pagan tradition of Good Friday/Easter Sunday! While subtly rejecting the truth of God, they try to mix a grain of truth in, to appear to somehow support it. Unrealized by them perhaps, truth and error do not mix and the truth actually exposes their error and trickery. (Christ was tried and crucified on the 14th of Nissan—Tuesday night and Wednesday and put in the tomb right at sunset that same day. From the time He was resurrected in reality, their false scenario of a Friday crucifixion could not possibly be correct; only to have one night and one day to the true time of His resurrection, which was at sunset on Saturday!) So let us examine this with Scripture;
Christ clearly did take the Passover meal with His disciples on a Tuesday evening, according to the Julian calendar, used at the time. Sunset on Tuesday began the 14th of Nisan in 31 AD, which was the annual Passover. (Exo.12:6-14) The fact that Passover was on Tuesday night and thru Wednesday in the year Christ was crucified seems to be confirmed by their quote. Matt 26:19 “So the disciples did as Jesus had directed them; and they prepared the Passover.” (NKJ)
Luke 22:8 “And He sent Peter and John, saying, "Go and prepare the Passover for us, that we may eat." The events of that Passover are clearly recorded for the NT COG, so I will skip those details. (See Passover Bible study for more.) However, that is about all the truth that is in the claim in the quote, the rest being fiction. It is true that Christ was taken in the night but was crucified on Wednesday, not held over until Friday to be crucified. (This part is all fiction when compared to Scripture) Christ was placed in the tomb right at sunset on that same 14th day, so let us now see the actual fulfilling of what Christ stated as the sign of Jonah. (Matt.12:39-40)
John 19:31 “Therefore, because it was the Preparation Day, that the bodies should not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a high day)”,--- the 15th of Nisan is a High Sabbath, as that Thursday was in 31 AD, so Christ, being already dead was taken down and placed in the tomb as Thursday was about to begin. Verse 38-42 show that Joseph and Nicodemus both prepared the Body of Christ and placed it in the tomb, which would have been right at sunset on Wednesday. Mark 15:42 says; “Now when evening had come, because it was the Preparation Day, that is, the day before the Sabbath,”--- so that Thursday was an annual Sabbath, the first High day of the season—the first day of UNLB< the 15th of Nisan. (Exo.12:15-20)
So in all actuality, by the time Friday came in that week, Christ had already been in the tomb for two nights and a day; Wednesday night and all day Thursday, then Thursday night—now Friday makes the 2nd day and Friday night the 3rd night. Saturday, the weekly Sabbath is the 3rd day and at sunset the time would be complete. That is in fact what is revealed when searched out.
But now as I conclude this article, let us not forget that even the flimsy scenario given in the “Syriac Didascalia” could not possibly be used or even meant to be used. WHY?? The counting of time, the sign according to Christ Himself, was not to begin with His trial and suffering on the stake, but with Christ actually dead and His body being placed in the tomb! So let us consider this aspect of truth; Matt.12:40 in the ASV (Emphasis mine) shows this; “for as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.” (So He was to be 3 days and 3 nights in the tomb.)
These little details of Scripture expose the many falsehoods, so that the very best of their presented scenario could only have been Friday night and Saturday; (1 night and 1 day) nowhere close to the 3 days and 3 nights of Scriptural revealing. That was in truth only the last night and day of Christ in the tomb, as Scripture reveals. Christ was not crucified on Friday nor was there a two day long trial that drug on until Friday! Christ was arrested tried and crucified all on the 14th of the first month and He was not resurrected on Sunday and those are Biblical facts! False Christianity’s attempt at making up the rest of the time could not even be considered, because the time they are counting as two days and nights would have been time Christ was not yet even in the tomb, (if in fact crucified on Friday as they claim) and that is by their own admission. This is blatant disregard for truth of Scripture—in order to promote their lies and pagan traditions. This reveals a different and lying spirit that has spun this tale to present another story and a different Jesus, which has been used to deceived the whole world, (Rev.12:9) as this has been received all around the world and for centuries. There is one more thing to consider, and that is that the Easter tradition is a mark or sign of sun-worship—worship of the Image of the Beast (which is the Catholic church) and a mark of the beast! (Rev.13:15-18—see also the booklet titled “The Image of the Beast” for more) We have to be very careful what we are willing to accept and believe, if we are to gain Salvation and be born into the Kingdom of God. “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling” by doing the research it takes to confirm truth and expose errors. Accepting half-truths, deceptions and outright lies about anything will not help to gain salvation, no matter what source they come from, but it could cost you eternal life!
(Written for TCOGMSO by the editor.)