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The Death Watch

An integral part of the teachings of The Prophet Of Galilee was that He would be in the Tomb "three days and three nights."

"12:40 For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth." (Matthew 12:40 KJV)

The prophecy of His death (see also The Sleep Of Death) was very specific, right down to the identification of those who would bring about His death.

"8:31 And he began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again." (Mark 8:31 KJV)

The body is the Temple of the Holy Spirit ("3:16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?" 1 Corinthians 3:16 KJV), which not only makes God's true people God's true people, but the Holy Spirit in them is the means by which they will be resurrected, "born again," as children of God (see Why Were Humans Created Physical?). That is how the Christ described His death and resurrection.

"2:19 Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.

2:20 Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days?

2:21 But he spake of the temple of his body.

2:22 When therefore he was risen from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this unto them; and they believed the scripture, and the word which Jesus had said." (John 2:19-22 KJV)

Even the unbelievers' mocking of Him on the Cross (see Crossing The T) showed how they ignored what He plainly said to them - they jeered Him to fulfill the prophecy of His death, before He had died, while He was yet alive during the Crucifixion.

"27:39 And they that passed by reviled him, wagging their heads, 27:40 And saying, Thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, save thyself. If thou be the Son of God, come down from the cross.

27:41 Likewise also the chief priests mocking him, with the scribes and elders, said, 27:42 He saved others; himself he cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him." (Matthew 27:39-42 KJV)

"So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch"

The death of the Messiah was a public spectacle, for a purpose. In order for there to be witnesses of His resurrection, there had to be witnesses that He was dead. The people who killed Him knew that He was dead i.e. they "saw that he was dead."

The Holy Scriptures

"19:28 After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled [see The By-The-Book Messiah], saith, I thirst. 19:29 Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a sponge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth. 19:30 When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost [see Giving Up The Ghost].

19:31 The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the sabbath day, for that sabbath day was an high day [i.e. the First Day of Passover/Unleavened Bread, not merely the weekly Sabbath that would come later that week - see the Fact Finder question below], besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. 19:32 Then came the soldiers, and brake the legs of the first, and of the other which was crucified with him. 19:33 But when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was dead already, they brake not his legs: 19:34 But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.

19:35 And he that saw it bare record, and his record is true: and he knoweth that he saith true, that ye might believe. 19:36 For these things were done, that the scripture should be fulfilled, A bone of him shall not be broken. 19:37 And again another scripture saith, They shall look on him whom they pierced.

The people who buried His Body knew that He was dead.

"19:38 And after this Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, besought Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus: and Pilate gave him leave. He came therefore, and took the body of Jesus. 19:39 And there came also Nicodemus, which at the first came to Jesus by night, and brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about an hundred pound weight.

19:40 Then took they the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes with the spices, as the manner of the Jews is to bury. 19:41 Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden; and in the garden a new sepulchre, wherein was never man yet laid. 19:42 There laid they Jesus therefore because of the Jews' preparation day; for the sepulchre was nigh at hand." (John 19:38-42 KJV)

Even the Romans testified to the death of the Messiah because they ordered a guard on His dead body to appease the unbelievers who feared that someone would steal His dead body.

"27:62 Now the next day, that followed the day of the preparation [i.e. the First Day of Passover/Unleavened Bread, not the regular weekly Sabbath - see the Fact Finder question below], the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate,27:63 Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again. 27:64 Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people, He is risen from the dead: so the last error shall be worse than the first.

27:65 Pilate said unto them, Ye have a watch: go your way, make it as sure as ye can. 27:66 So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch." (Matthew 27:62-66 KJV)

Fact Finder: On what day of the week did the Messiah die? On what day of the week did the Messiah rise from the dead?
See Why Observe The True Sabbath?

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