When was Jesus crucified?
Page 3
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Overview- This is Page 3 of a 3 page Bible Study...
Page 1 -- Page 1 of Biblebell's Study: On which DAY of the week was Jesus crucified?
Page 2 -- (1) Related studies by guest writers, and (2) Biblebell's addendum, prepared in response to comments from various other visitors to these pages.
Page 3, Why 3 PM? -- Further details concerning why the Lord died at 3 PM on Passover day.

Why 3 PM?

"Daytime," as used in the Bible, had twelve hours. In the Bible they numbered hours as per following examples...

  • 1st hour - 6 AM
  • 3rd hour - 9 AM
  • 6th hour - Noon
  • 9th hour - 3 PM
  Jesus answered, "Are there not twelve hours in the day?" John 11.9a
We have the Biblical record that Lord Jesus was crucified beginning at the third hour (9 AM), the ordinary time for the daily morning sacrifice.

Lord Jesus died on the cross by virtue of commanding His spirit to leave His body at the ninth hour (3 PM), the time of the evening sacrifice.
  Now it was the third hour (9 AM), and they crucified Him. Mark 15.25

Now when the sixth hour (noon) had come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour (3 PM). And at the ninth hour (3 PM) Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, "Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?" which is translated, "My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?" ...And Jesus cried out with a loud voice, and breathed His last. Mark 15.33-34, 37
Inasmuch as no creature truly possessed authority to slay Lord Jesus, He Himself slew the Lamb of God by commanding His spirit to leave His body.

Two possible reasons why Lord Jesus chose to die at the ninth hour (3 PM) are given below
  (Jesus said:) ...I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again... John 10.17b-18a

The body without the spirit is dead James 2.26a
Reason #1 - The ninth hour (3 PM) was the hour of prayer, when the Jews went into the temple at the daily evening sacrifice; and this was the *usual* time for slaying the Passover sacrifice.   Now Peter and John went up together to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour. Acts 3.1
Reason #2 - Of even greater significance -- When God instituted the Passover, He commanded that the paschal lamb should be slain on the 14th day (Passover) "at evening" -- that is, during the time after the sun passed its zenith (~3 PM), and extending until sunset.   Now you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month. Then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it at evening. Exod 12.6

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