Acts 1:3 To the same apostles also, after his suffering, he presented himself alive with many convincing proofs. He was seen by them over a forty-day period and spoke about matters concerning the kingdom of God.
There has been debate about the meaning of Matthew 12:40 and there are other scriptures that just say three days or on the third day
1 Corinthians 15:4 and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day according to the scriptures,
Matthew 17:23 They will kill him, and on the third day he will be raised.” And they became greatly distressed.
Luke 18:33 They will flog him severely and kill him. Yet on the third day he will rise again.”
Acts 10:39 We are witnesses of all the things he did both in Judea and in Jerusalem. They killed him by hanging him on a tree, 10:40 but God raised him up on the third day and caused him to be seen, 10:41 not by all the people, but by us, the witnesses God had already chosen, who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead.
The Jews at that time at least understood time a little differently than we do today and it is my understanding that a part of a day could be counted as a complete day with this way of thinking about time.
There is also the evidence of the early witnesses that Yashua was crucified on Friday and rose on Sunday at some time before early dawn as testified by many scriptures. (Luke 24:22, Luke 24:1, Mark 16:2, John 20:1) I accept that this may well have been the previous evening but there is no evidence that I am aware of to prove this. One other possibility may be inferred from a statement made by the apostle Peter:
2 Peter 1:19 Moreover, we possess the prophetic word as an altogether reliable thing. You do well if you pay attention to this as you would to a light shining in a murky place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.
The Lord Yashua is referred to as the Morning Star in Revelation and here I believe He is what the apostle is referring to. This is a description of the morning star from Wikipedia:
"Morning star is the name given to the planet Venus when it appears in the east before sunrise (as though heralding the coming of the morning). "Phosphorus" or "Light-Bringer" (Greek Φωσφόρος Phōsphoros) is the ancient Greek mythological name for the planet. It is also named Ἑωσφόρος, Heosphoros, "Dawn-bringer".
For greater certainty the word used by Pater in the Greek is phosphoros which is indeed the morning star as noted above. So just as the Lord Yashua rose before dawn on the third day so He the Morning Star rises in our hearts before the dawn of the Day of the Lord (in our personal experience as well as historically). This would make the time of His Resurrection to coincide with the rising of the morning star in the east.
As I indicated previously there is the evidence from the seventy weeks of Daniel pinpointing the year which I believe makes the timing conclusive. Altogether I believe we can say with conviction that the traditional time is correct. Like you I depend upon scripture as interpreted for me by the Spirit of Truth and He always provides several witnesses according to the Law.
With respect, you have erred on the question of the timing of the Ascension and you have presented only one scripture that APPEARS to contradict the accepted belief that the Crucifixion took place on Friday which is well supported by other scriptures, prophecy from the Tanach and extra Biblical evidence including witnesses from the period in question who were alive at the time. You have then constructed a belief or have accepted a belief that fits with this understanding of the meaning of this one scripture. The Law prescribes two or three witnesses and this applies to the Word of God as well.
One must be very scrupulous in determining the meaning of the Word of God and I believe we must always bear in mind that the scriptures reveal His Mind on all things and He sees things from a heavenly perspective in the Light of His purposes. This is why so many stray from the Truth in Messiah Yashua and why we must always be open to correction.
Thank you for an interesting discussion and I pray that you and I shall continue to grow in grace and truth and in wisdom and stature as the Spirit of the Son enables us.
"Jesus answered them: 'Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.'" (John 8:34-36)
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