“When Were the True Dates of the Crucifixion and Resurrection?”


          Chris L. Lingle of The Society for the Advancement of Nazarene Judaism, in 1997 wrote, (Emphasis CGE)

          “… This precise understanding is supported by the Hebrew of Shem Tob. The Hebrew Manuscripts of Matthew are now becoming well known as authoritative over the Greek in many areas of the New Testament.  Even like its 10th-14th century counterpart - the Old Testament or Tenach, as it is called in Hebrew, the 10th-14th century Hebrew manuscripts of Matthew are believed by many of the world's leading Bible and Semitic Language scholars to be authoritative (see The Semitic Origin of the New Testament - by James Trimm).

The manuscripts in Matthew 28:1 of Shem Tob perfectly and unmistakeably render: "And on the first day (be-yowm ha-roshown Strong's #3117 and #7223) from the week (ma-ha-shabua Strong's #7620) in the early morning (be-ha-shakamah Strongs #7926-7929) came Miriam Magdalene and the other Miriam to see the sepulchre." This is very clearly in support of a Sunday morning resurrection.  It is also quite clearly a very fluent mixture of BH and MH (Biblical Hebrew and Mishnaic Hebrew).

Interestingly, the Aramaic Peshitta of Matthew 28:1 supports the false idea that Yahushua rose late on the sabbath.  Apparently, this was due to the awkward Greek rendering of "opse" in the passage as it became translated into Aram. "ramsa" - the Aramaic equivalent to the Hebrew "erev". 

Another area of confusion with regard to the Gr. root "opse" in Matthew is found in Mt 27:57.  Here it says that Joseph of Arimathea came to procure Yahushua's body at "evening" (opsios).  However, in Shem Tob, it renders "toward evening time" (la-et erev) in the Hebrew.   (This is pointed out in more depth later in the article).  Suffice it to say here that the Gr. root "opse" was used by the earliest N.T. translaters, translating from the Hebrew, to connote "late, afternoon, and evening ".   The essential problem with the usage for "erev" as "late" is that in the Hebrew Tenach "evening" (erev) always occurs at the beginning or early part of the day and never at the end or late part of the day.  And even today, it remains incorrectly understood as "late" in Hebrew because of the pagan and borrowed Greco-Roman element.  The word "evening"  still carries an ancient pagan notion of being toward sunset in the afternoon or after sunset either way (even as it is in the West today).  But, not so in ancient biblical Hebrew.   For, it is unique among ancient Hebrew, as opposed to Greek or English understanding, to begin a day at evening or sundown.  Therefore, "evening" in biblical Hebrew is always at the beginning of one day and "after" the preceding day.  "Opse" in its usage at Mt 28:1 connotes "after" rather than "late" because Greek is a pagan language deriving its original base text from Hebrew.  This is a classic example of where opposing cultural terminology can cause inaccurate translations.  Furthermore, if that language becomes influential enough (and Greek eventually did) it can even change the way a people actually look at a term.  In this case, it has directly affected most late second temple and modern Jews. 

Therefore, the Aramaic rendering at Mt. 28:1 is likewise without any real support based on the fact that Shem Tob Hebrew Matthew renders the passage clearly and concisely as refering to Sunday morning, unencumbered by awkward translation.  Another obvious reason for the confidence that we place in Shem Tob is made clear in the parallel passages in Mark, Luke, and John.  It is universally held in all manuscript languages of these books that the resurrection indeed occurred on Sunday morning!  Read on, below are the Greek renderings:

Lk. 24:1 "But the first of the week (sabbaton) at (orthrou batheos) just before day-break they came to the tomb bringing aromatics which they had prepared, and some others with them."

orthrou - "dawn (as sunrise; rising of light, by extens. morning - early in the morning" Strong's #3722. "day-break, dawn, cock-crow." Liddell-Scott p. 568.

batheos - "profound (as going down, lit. or fig.) - deep, very early" Strong's #901.

Mk. 16:2 "And very early, the first of the week (sabbaton), they came to the tomb as was coming the light (anateilantos) of the sun."

anateilantos - "to arise" Strong's #393; "to make to rise or grow up...to give birth to, bring to light...(of the sun and moon)" Liddell-Scott's p. 63.

Jn. 20:1 "But on the first of the week (sabbaton), Mariam the Magdalene came early, it still being dim (skotias), to the tomb."

skotias - "dimness, obscurity" Strong's #4653; "darkness, gloom" Liddell -Scott p. 735. This word is a reference to the dimness just before dawn.

Thus, we can readily see that a cursory analysis of these passages reveals that the time of the visit to the tomb took place just before sunrise on the first day of the week and not at the end of the sabbath when the first day was just beginning at evening - as proponents of the Saturday resurrection argue.

 The majority and proper rendering of the scriptures themselves do not contend that the visit took place right after the sabbath at evening. A day beginning somewhere around evening is not the timing being spoken of here. These verses do, however, plainly state that the visit of the women took place in the early morning of the first day of the week. Thus, the argument that these passages prove that the Messiah's body was already risen and gone by the very end of the sabbath is not demonstratable at all and is in error. …

… (L)et's look at a mistranslated verse in the Greek which some may point to at Mt. 27:57. Most translations from the Greek render "And evening having come"...he came to Pilate and asked for the body of Messiah and then placed it in the tomb. However, we should know that the torah forbids that a body remain unburied after sunset (Deut. 21:23). The Shem Tob (Hebrew Matthew) correctly states that it was (la-et erev) "toward evening time" when Joseph inquired about the body. Therefore, we do know that the Messiah was captured, tortured, crucified, AND buried BEFORE evening time. …”


So we know by the superior knowledge of our friends of The Society for the Advancement of Nazarene Judaism that our Christian heritage of Greek Manuscripts are second hand and inferior, and in the specific instances of concern here, Mt.27:57 and Mk.15:42, false and corrupted – as judged against the “precise understanding” of the “Hebrew Manuscripts … of Shem Tob”.

I’m sure the reader won’t blame me if I don’t elaborate.