One of the great mysteries in the Bible concerns how the Messiah fulfilled the three days and nights in the earth. His own words on the subject are as follows. "For 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 (Matt 12:40)." For this to remain a mystery for so many years, Yahweh had to devise a phenomenal feat that man's intellect would never solve (1 Cor. 2:14). He caused two of the three days and nights to occur on one day (see chart below).
In other words, Yahweh created a day within day. The day of the Messiah's crucifixion the sun rose and set twice, or there was two light and dark periods in a 24-hour period. This was the DAY known only to Yahweh (Zech. 14:6-7). Quoting the prophet Amos, he states: "And it shall come to pass in that day, saith Yahweh Elohim (the Lord God), that I will cause the sun to go down at noon, and I will darken the earth in the clear day (Amos 8:9):"
As this article will show later, there are numerous instances of three days and nights in the Old Testament of the Bible. For example, the ninth plague in Egypt consisted of three days and nights of darkness on the Egyptians before the Israelites killed the Paschal lamb (Ex. 10:21-22). Yet the Israelites had light in their dwelling during this period.
According to Moses' vision of Creation, there was comic or shekinah light for three days before the sun, stars, and moon were put in the sky (Gn. 1:1-4), which was created on the fourth day of Moses' vision.
Why have none of the major sects been able to explain the three days and nights?
Considering that the "three days and three nights in the heart of the earth" is one of the fundamental tenets of the Christian faith, one would think that there would be a consensus on how to calculate the three days and nights. Various denominations and sects of Christianity have argued over this for the last two thousand years with no answer.
Everyone agrees that the Messiah rose on the first day of the week (John 20:1), which is Sunday on the Christian calendar. To determine the three days and nights that the Messiah was in the heart of the earth, some groups have gone as far as to begin their count on Wednesday or Thursday.
The ones who promote these calculations fail for two reasons. They take the scriptures literally and do not use the Law and Prophets properly.
Many Jewish priests and scholars of the Law and Prophets (Isa. 8:20) who were eyewitnesses to the Messiah's crucifixion did not understand when these three days and nights began. So if they didn't understand, it is obvious that the Roman Catholics, the Great Mother Church, and others do not have a chance of reconciling the matter.
The Apostles did not explain this mystery in their New Testament writings. Clearly, Christianity was left in a quandary about this subject. Although there were many theories and Bible commentaries put forth to explain it, none satisfactorily answered the question.
Did Yahweh reveal this mystery to anyone?
In 1931, Dr. Henry C. Kinley had a panoramic vision and revelation from Yahweh that revealed the three days and three nights and other mysteries of the Bible. (Elohim the Archetype Original Pattern of the Universe, Vol. 4, p. 48-51) In fact, the proof he was given not only explains the three days and nights, but proves beyond a shadow of the doubt that Dr. Kinley experienced some kind of supernatural occurrence to be able to explain it. I have personally researched hundreds of the worlds best Bible commentaries such as Matthew Henry and others that were written prior to 1931 and none even gave hints of how to explain this mystery.
What methodology must be used to explain the mystery?
There are two keys to solving this mystery. First, one has to understand that supernatural events do occur that transcend all known laws of physics. Simply put, Spirit law, which causes the universe to exist and the laws of physics to mimic it, produced the manifestation of three days and nights.
There are many miracles in the Bible that cannot be explained using the scientific model. For example, Joshua the Son of Nun caused the sun to stand still for a day while Israel defeated the Amorites, a Gentile nation in Canaan land (Jos. 10:12-13). The scientific model is good for explaining the operation of the physical realm, but it is of no use in explaining spiritual things (See "Can the Scientific Model Explain the Paranormal," May/June 1997 "PLIM REPORT").
Second, one has to see that the seers or prophets of Israel prophesied the Messiah's death, burial, and resurrection in the Law and the Prophets or the Old Testament (Isa. 8:20) thousands of years before its actual fulfillment. The Messiah told the teachers of Israel that the Jewish scriptures, the Law and Prophets testified to him (Jn. 5:39).
To fully understand Yahshua the Messiah's crucifixion, one has to have some knowledge of when the Hebrew day began and ended, the sacrifices offered for atonement, and the officiation of the priests' duties in the temple and tabernacle, which will be discussed later in this article.
Are the three days and nights in the Old Testament?
Now one must understand the symbolism of the three days and nights and the principles they represent. One clue starts with the first two verses of Genesis, the first book of the Bible.
Moses wrote: "In the beginning Elohim (God) created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of Elohim (God) moved upon the face of the waters (Gen. 1:1-2)." Clearly, this verse is stating that in the beginning of anything there is always chaos. No shape or form exists just as in the beginning of a human's existence in the womb, the DNA appears like spegghetti.
Here we have the beginning of creation in a chaotic or in a death and burial state, which was created by Elohim. There is darkness; no life or form exists at this point of creation. This same situation existed in Egypt after the ten plagues were poured out (Exo. 12:29-31). We can see these same principles both physically and psychologically when Jonah was in the belly of the fish for those three days (Jon. 1:17).
What do the three days and nights symbolize?
To explain the three days and nights mystery, one has to see that they represent spiritual principles, coming from a chaotic state to a resurrected state. According to the book of Genesis, the transformation of this chaotic state of creation into form took place on the third day when the plants and vegetation sprang up out of the earth (Gn. 1:1-13). Here we have the first fruit of life manifested in the earth.
The Messiah represents the first fruits of life from the resurrection and from the foundation of the creation (I Cor. 15:20; Rev. 13:8). So the three days of creation testifies to the Messiah's death, burial, and resurrection, which are principles of creation. Now three days after the resurrection of the vegetation kingdom the first Adam was created. Again this points to the Yahshua the Messiah who is the true man. Now the Messiah represents an embodiment of principles that were in a resurrected state.
Do others understand the principle of three days and nights?
Many cultures and religions recognized these principles. The Esoteric Buddhism states that from the shapeless void shape comes and to the void forms and shapes return.
What did the prophets say about the days?
Now the prophets gave some very specific prophecy concerning the Messiah. As was stated earlier in this article, the prophet Zechariah gave a clue about the three days and nights, for he said only Yahweh knew this day (Zech. 14:6-7). No one knew how this prophecy would be manifested until the Messiah fulfilled it (Matt. 5:17-18).
Other prophets of Israel foretold that the sun would go down in the sky. These were further clues that most students of the Bible overlooked. Here are a few of the main prophecies.
o Isaiah wrote: "For the stars of heaven and the constellations thereof shall not give their light: the sun shall be darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine (Isa 13:10)."
o Zechriah wrote: "And it shall come to pass in that day, that the light shall not be clear, nor dark: But it shall be one day which shall be known to Yahweh (the Lord), not day, nor night: but it shall come to pass, that at evening time it shall be light (Zech. 14:6-7)."
Many Christians today do not understand these prophecies and they are still looking for these things to transpire in the future when the Messiah has already fulfilled them. This is not to say that these principles do not repeat themselves after the Messiah's death.
How did the Messiah fulfill these prophecies?
The Messiah's mission was to fulfill the Law and Prophets (Isa. 8:20). He said this many times during His ministry. At the Beatitudes, He said: "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled (Matt. 5:17-18; Lk. 24:37, 44-46)."
Now the Messiah, being the true Paschal lamb, had to fulfill the slain lamb in Egypt (1 Cor. 5:7), which represented Him symbolically. Listed below are some other activities that the Israelites performed in Egypt before they left that pointed to the Messiah.
o The blood of the lamb being put on the door (Ex. 12:7, 22) pointed to His crucifixion with nails in both hands and feet and a crown of thorns on His head (Jn. 20:25; Ps. 22:16).
o As no bones could be broken in the lambs in Egypt (Ex. 12:46), likewise the Messiah being the reality could have none of his bones broken (Jn. 19:33, 36).
o The lambs in Egypt were killed during the time the Egyptians were in darkness (Ex. 12:6). Likewise, the Messiah fulfilled this by the sky turning dark when He was on the cross. Matthew wrote the following to confirm this. "Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour (Mt. 27:45)."
How did Yahweh create a day within a day?
Before the details of the three days and nights mystery can be answered, Dr. Kinley listed some points about Jewish theology that must be understood (see Vol. 4, p. 49).
1. The temple and tabernacle represent His body. The Messiah was referring to His body when He told His disciples that He would raise it in three days (Jn. 2:18-19).
2. Yahshua the Messiah's body took the place of all the dead sacrifices, such as the sin offerings, burnt offerings, etc., which Israel offered to Yahweh for their transgression of the Law (Heb. 10:1-17). Yahshua died once to remove sins; thus ending all forms of sacrifice and temple worship.
3. Being the paschal lamb, the Messiah (Jn. 1:29) had to be crucified on the Passover to fulfill the scriptures.
4. Sacrifices were offered up twice during the day at 9:00 a.m. and at 3:00 p.m. (Ex. 29:38-39; Num. 28:4; Mt. 27:45), which pointed to the time of Yahshua the Messiah's crucifixion.
5. In the tabernacle and temple the Light came from the candlesticks in the Sanctuary (Holy Place). The priest had to light them at 3:00 p.m. (Exo. 30:8) in the afternoon and they were snuffed out at 9:00 a.m. This corresponds to the blood draining out of the body of the Messiah in the cross.
6. The first man Adam pointed to the Messiah (Rom. 5:14). Adam's death for Eve pointed to the Messiah dying for Israel.
7. Elohim called a "light period" day and called a "dark period" night (Gn. 1:5). In fact, the Hebrew calendar day starts with a dark period or night first which begins in the evening at 6:00 p.m. For example, the Jewish Sabbath begins on Friday evening at 6:00 p.m.
With these basic points in mind, we can begin an analysis of how the three days and nights took place.
Are some things beyond man's understanding?
We may never know the precise way that Elohim created a day within day. However, this article will explain how the sun rose and sat twice in a day or a 24 hour period (see chart below).
Now many may find this explanation hard to believe because it seems to contradict all known laws of physics. However, we see there is a higher power in operation (Rom. 13:1) that can change physical laws anytime it wills. As was mentioned earlier, Yahweh caused the sun to stand still for an entire day while Israel conquered a Gentile nation. Also remember that Elohim caused light to exist for the first three days of creation before He created the sun on the fourth day. This is another miracle of Spirit Law that seems beyond natural laws.
How does the Messiah's crucifixion fit into the three days?
Now the events that led up to His crucifixion follow.
o The Messiah ate the Passover with His disciples at the rented room (Mt. 26:17-18), where Judas left to betray Him (Mt. 26:23). The Passover began Thursday evening at 6:00 p.m.
o After the dinner the Messiah went to the garden of Gethsemane to pray with His disciples. It was here that Judas brought the high priests with guards to apprehend him (Jn. 18:1-4).
o All during the night the high priests, Herod, and Pontus Pilate interrogated Him (Mt. 27:1-25; John 18:19-40) and put Him on trial.
o Finally, at 9:00 a.m. Friday morning, they put the Messiah on the cross (Mk. 15:25), along with the two thieves, to fulfill the priests offering morning sacrifices on the altar in the temple. See chart below)
o 9:00 a.m. is the 3rd hour of the Hebrew day, for the daylight period started at 6:00 a.m. which is sunrise.
What happened at the Messiah's death?
All accounts of the Messiah's crucifixion state that it turned dark over the face of the earth from the sixth hour, which is noon, to ninth hour, which is 3:00 p.m. So from noon to 3:00 p.m. in the afternoon it was dark which was the same as night. (See chart below)
Now this fulfilled the prophet Amos' prophecy. "I [Yahweh] will cause the sun to go down at noon, and I will darken the earth in the clear day." Isaiah wrote that the stars and moons and constellations would not shine during this period.
Since it was dark from noon to 3:00 p.m., this means the sun had to be going down during the period from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon, making the normal morning a twilight period. Clearly, when the people saw morning time turning into night, they thought this was the end of the world.
At 3:00 p.m. in the evening it started to get light again. So the period between 3:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. was likened unto sunrise. At 6:00 p.m., the sun was in the sky as noon. Now this fulfilled Zechariah's prophecy "…it shall come to pass, that at evening time it shall be light…"
The three days and nights
This gives a total of 3 DAYS and 3 NIGHTS as the Messiah said in Matthew 12:40. The resurrection occurred during the early dawn of the NEW DAY, the 1st day of the week SUNDAY morning, SATURDAY being the Sabbath Day.
When His disciples asked Him about the signs of His coming and the end of the age, which was the Post-Diluvian age, Yahshua told them about the signs in the heaven. He said to them: "Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken (Mt. 24:29):"
It is clear that many Christians have missed this prophecy of the three days and nights and confused it with the end of our age of Grace. Now before concluding this article one has to see the principles of darkness that occurred at the Messiah's resurrection reoccurring at the end of other ages or worlds.
How did darkness occur at the end or beginning of an Age?
What must be understood about the three days and nights is that it is a principle that repeats itself at the beginning or the end of an age. Although there might not be a physical 3 days and nights, there is the principle of darkness before there is light.
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