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This Passion Week and Easter the Dates All Align

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Every Sunday celebrates Easter. First-century Christians transferred the day of worship from Saturday to Sunday. This year is special, for the days and dates of the Passion Week align with our calendars.

This Passion Week and Easter, the Dates All Align

(Photo: Jerusalem through the window at Dominus Flevit. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

Because the Bible and history offer specific details, we know that Jesus Christ was crucified on April 3, AD 33.

It takes years for the calendar to roll around and allow for the exact dates of the Passion Week to align with our own calendars. This year it’s happening.

Here’s a simple chronology of the Passion Week’s events with the days and dates they occurred.

Sunday, March 29

  • Jesus’ Triumphal Entry included weeping over Jerusalem (Luke 19:41-44).
  • He entered the city and looked over the Temple Mount area (Matt. 21:10-17; Mark 11:11).
  • Jesus spent the night in Bethany (Matt. 21:17 Mark 11:11).
Dominus Flevit Church

(Photo: The Dominus Flevit Church, shaped like an inverted teardrop)

Monday, March 30

  • Jesus cursed the fig tree as a lesson to the disciples (Matt. 21:18-19 Mark 11:12-14).
  • Jesus cleansed the Temple (Matt. 21:12-13 Mark 11:15-17 Luke 19:45-46).

Tuesday, March 31

  • The disciples notice the withered fig tree (Matt. 21:20-22 Mark 11:20-26).
  • At the Temple, Jesus had a day of debate with the Jewish leaders (Matt. 21:23-23:39; Mark 11:27-12:44; Luke 20:1-21:4).
  • Jesus pronounced judgment on Israel and leaves the Temple Mount for the last time.
  • Jesus gives the Olivet Discourse on the Mount of Olives (Matt. 24-25).
The Temple Mount—An Ordinary Hill Made Holy

(Photo: the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

Wednesday, April 1

  • The religious leaders plot to murder Jesus (Matt. 26:1-5 Mark 14:1-2 Luke 22:1-2; John 11:47-53).

Thursday, April 2

Tower of David Citadel—Jerusalem’s History Made Easy

(Photo: Pilate judged Jesus in the Citadel. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

Friday, April 3

  • In the early hours of the morning, Jesus is tried by the Sanhedrin, Herod, and Pilate (Matt. 27:1-30; Mark 15:1-19; Luke 22:66-23:25; John 18:28-19:16).
  • Jesus was crucified at the place of the skull and died at 3 PM; He was buried nearby in a new tomb (Matt. 27:31-60; Mark 15:20-47; Luke 23:26-54; John 19:16-42).

Saturday, April 4

  • The religious leaders request of Pilate a seal and guard at Jesus’ tomb (Matt. 27:61-66).
The Holy Sepulchre's dome covers Christ's tomb

(Photo: The Holy Sepulchre’s dome covers Christ’s tomb. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

Easter Sunday, April 5

  • Jesus is resurrected from His tomb and appears:
    • To the Women (Matt. 28:9-10; Luke 24:10-11; John 20:14-18).
    • To Peter (1 Cor. 15:5 Luke 24:34); the Lord would later appear to him again in Galilee (John 21).
    • To two disciples on the Emmaus Road (Luke 24:13-35).
    • To the Disciples in the Upper Room (Luke 24:36-43 John 20:19-29).

Our hope for the future has a solid basis, because Jesus was resurrected bodily in time and space. (Tweet that.)

Because the days and dates of the Passion Week align with our own calendars this year, it’s a great reminder that our faith is rooted in history—not mystery or fable. As Peter wrote:

We did not follow cleverly devised tales when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of His majesty. —2 Peter 1:16

Tell me what you think: What does the resurrection mean to you? To leave a comment, just click here.

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