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Jesus' Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem
- Timing in Relation to the Crucifixion

Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem happened just before the end of His ministry and is commonly recognized to have been on what is often called Palm Sunday. There is an interesting question regarding the timing of the days in the last week of Jesus' life before the crucifixion that I have never seen explained elsewhere. In the book The Desire of Ages, Jesus' entry into Jerusalem is said to have been on a Sunday:

"It was on the first day of the week that Christ made His triumphal entry into Jerusalem" (DA 569)

As He and the crowd approached the temple it is described as being late in the day:

"When the fast westering sun should pass from sight in the heavens, Jerusalem's day of grace would be ended. ... While the last rays of the setting sun were lingering on temple, tower and pinnacle, would not some good angel lead her to the Saviour's love and avert her doom? ... - her day of mercy is almost spent." (DA 578)

He would enter the gates still on that day (which ended at sunset), still with opportunity for the Jews to accept Him:

"If Jerusalem will hear the call, if she will receive the Saviour who is entering her gates she may yet be saved." (DA 578)

That day, the tenth of Nisan, was the day when they were to select the Passover Lamb. They had opportunity to accept Him but, unfortunately, they made the wrong choice. In Exodus, the selection of the Passover lambs is described:

"Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house: And if the household be too little for the lamb, let him and his neighbour next unto his house take it according to the number of the souls; every man according to his eating shall make your count for the lamb. Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats: And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening." (Exo 12:3-6)

This was to be the pattern for the later choice regarding the Lamb of God who John the Baptist pointed to.

"And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God!" (John 1:36)

The chart below shows the days of the week (in 31 AD) corresponding to the days of Nisan and the days the lamb was to be selected and slain:

Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Nisan 10 11 12 13 14 15 ???
Lamb selected       lamb slain  

The question, of course, is: "how does the day of the selection of the lamb being on Sunday, Nisan 10 fit with the theory of the crucifixion being on Friday, Nisan 14?" It cannot be. How could Jesus' triumphal entry, the selection of the lamb be on Sunday the tenth of Nisan and the Passover sacrifice be on Friday the fourteenth of Nisan? It doesn't work. There is a good explanation of this given in the book In the Heart of the Earth: The Secret Code That Reveals What Is In the Heart of God (p95). The portion that answers that question is reproduced (with a little modification) in a series of three webpages starting with was the crucifxion on the wrong day?

This, if course, might bring up a question in some minds about the inspiration of Ellen White. However, this need not be a problem and is addressed in the study Ellen White a prophet?  


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