The following excerpt is from the booklet A Christian Love Story by Zola Levitt.
Now when Jesus actually went to the cross, we might think His Father had special mercy on Him. It normally took three days for a person to die by crucifixion. The condemned one would hang there morning and night as people passed by, dying by inches. He would be naked, suffering from a flogging and in total agony until his life seeped away. How was it that this Carpenter, in fine physical condition, was dead in just six hours?
That question has been asked from time immemorial, but a simple consultation of the order of the Jewish feasts answers it perfectly. In Leviticus we have God’s placement of the first two feasts of the Jewish year, Passover and Unleavened Bread:
On the fourteenth day of the first month at twilight is the Lord’s Passover. 6 And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the Feast of Unleavened Bread to the Lord; seven days you must eat unleavened bread. Lev 23:5-6
The symbol of Passover is the sacrifice of the lamb, and Jesus fulfilled it on the cross. The symbol of Unleavened Bread is the body of the Lord buried in the earth (“if a kernel of wheat fall into the ground…”, “This bread is My body”). Thus, to fulfill the second feast, the Lord had to be buried at the beginning of Unleavened Bread, or at sundown on the day of Passover. He was placed on the cross at 9:00 in the morning and taken down at 3:00. Sundown in April in Israel is about 4:30 or 5:00, and thus the Lord was buried exactly in time to commemorate the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
And so the fulfillments progress through the rest of the feasts. First Fruits, which we now call “Easter”, came on the following Sunday.
Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘When you come into the land which I give to you, and reap its harvest, then you shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest. He shall wave the sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted on your behalf; on the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it. And you shall offer on that day, when you wave the sheaf, a male lamb of the first year, without blemish, as a burnt offering to the Lord. Lev 23:10-12
Indeed the Lord rose as the first fruits of those to be resurrected.
For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive. But each one in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, afterward those who are Christ’s at His coming. 1 Cor 15:22-23
And you shall count for yourselves from the day after the Sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering: seven Sabbaths shall be completed. Lev 23:15
The fourth feast is Pentecost, 50 days later and the Lord sent the Holy Spirit in a great harvest. Three thousand people were saved that day, just as 3,000 people were killed on the day the Law came. They had made a golden calf and the Lord was infuriated:
So the sons of Levi did according to the word of Moses. And about three thousand men of the people fell that day. Ex 32:28
But when the Lord sent the Holy Spirit, He returned to Israel exactly 3,000 souls. The Lord is a good bookkeeper, and indeed, the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. 2 Cor 3:6
Thus the Lord performed exactly in accordance with the first four feasts of Israel.
He will do the same in the future, it is clear.
We expect the Rapture of the Church on the fifth feast, the Feast of Trumpets.
More on this tomorrow.