21 Abib: The Last Day of Unleavened Bread – An Annual or High Sabbath

Exodus 23:15 You shall observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread; for seven days you are to eat unleavened bread, as I commanded you, at the appointed time in the month Abib, for in it you came out of Egypt. And none shall appear before Me empty-handed. (NASB)

This “yom” on 21 Abib, the third day of the week (evening of 4/10 and morning of 4/11) on the seventh day of Unleavened Bread, marks the final day of the feast; it is an annual or High Sabbath and is a holy convocation:

Leviticus 23:6 Then on the fifteenth day of the same month there is the Feast of Unleavened Bread to the Lord; for seven days you shall eat unleavened bread. 7 On the first day you shall have a holy convocation; you shall not do any laborious work. 8 But for seven days you shall present an offering by fire to the Lord. On the seventh day is a holy convocation; you shall not do any laborious work. (NASB)

In 36 CE, Christ had ascended to Heaven for the first time the day before and spent this day resting at the right hand of the Most High.


Be sure to read the companion articles in the Passover/Unleavened Bread series as well as the events leading up to them:

Shema Yisrael! (Hear, Israel!)

Copyright (C) 1995-2018, L. Alan Schuetz. All rights reserved.


2 Timothy 2:15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth. (NASB)

HaDerech Scroll - Paleo-Hebrew

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20 Abib: The Great Commission and Christ’s First Ascension

Luke 24:50 And He led them out as far as Bethany, and He lifted up His hands and blessed them. 51 While He was blessing them, He parted from them and was carried up into heaven. 52 And they, after worshiping Him, returned to Jerusalem with great joy, 53 and were continually in the temple praising God. (NASB)

On this day in history… 20 Abib in 36 CE, the second day of the week (evening of 4/9 and focusing on the morning of 4/10) on the sixth day of Unleavened Bread, the following occurred:

All three passages may be read here for your convenience.

As was discussed in yesterday’s article 19 Abib: Christ’s Empty Tomb Discovered, the account in Mark 16 is spurious as that passage was not found in early manuscripts and contains false information about the day of His resurrection in v9; see the footnotes for vv9 and 20.

This was the day that the Great Commission was issued and when Christ ascended into Heaven at Bethany in Galilee in Luke 24:50-53. This was also the day before the annual or High Sabbath that marked the closing of the Feast of Unleavened Bread on 21 Abib. On that day, He rested with His Father in Heaven.

Note that the original ascension did not occur forty (40) days after Easter on a Thursday (i.e., Feast of the Ascension) as is observed in some churches. We know that Christ visited His disciples on other occasions. For example, the “doubting Thomas” event occurred during the following week in John 20:26-31. We also have the opening of Acts (again, written to Mattathias ben Theophilus sometime between 65-66 CE when he served as chief priest in Jerusalem before the outbreak of the First Jewish-Roman War that started in 66 CE):

Acts 1:1 The first account I composed, Theophilus, about all that Jesus began to do and teach, 2 until the day when He was taken up to heaven, after He had by the Holy Spirit given orders to the apostles whom He had chosen. 3 To these He also presented Himself alive after His suffering, by many convincing proofs, appearing to them over a period of forty days and speaking of the things concerning the kingdom of God. (NASB)

Verse 2 speaks of the Great Commission followed by His initial ascension. Verse 3 speaks of many convincing proofs over the next 40 days which remain mostly undocumented in Biblical canon. Note also:

John 20:30 Therefore many other signs Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; 31 but these have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name. (NASB)

Again, we know in 1 Corinthians 15 focusing on verses 6-7 that other events occurred that did not make it into Biblical canon:

1 Corinthians 15:3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. 6 After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep; 7 then He appeared to James, then to all the apostles; 8 and last of all, as to one untimely born, He appeared to me also. 9 For I am the least of the apostles, and not fit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. 10 But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me did not prove vain; but I labored even more than all of them, yet not I, but the grace of God with me. (NASB)

Author’s Note: The “church of God” that Saul (Heb. Sha’ul) persecuted in v9 was the “sect” called The Way (Heb. HaDerech) documented in the Dead Sea Scrolls; see Acts 9:1-31; 19:8-10,23-27; 22:1-16; and 24:1-16 focusing on vv14-15.

The two witnesses of Revelation, Enoch and Elijah, will fill in the gaps for those believers who endure to at least mid-Tribulation.


Be sure to read the companion articles in the Passover/Unleavened Bread series as well as the events leading up to them:

Shema Yisrael! (Hear, Israel!)

Copyright (C) 1995-2018, L. Alan Schuetz. All rights reserved.


2 Timothy 2:15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth. (NASB)

HaDerech Scroll - Paleo-Hebrew

Mo’ed: Chag HaMatzot (Feast of Unleavened Bread) – 15-21 Abib

Leviticus 23:6 “Then on the fifteenth day of the same month there is the Feast of Unleavened Bread to [lit. Yahoah]; for seven days you shall eat unleavened bread. 7 On the first day you shall have a holy convocation; you shall not do any laborious work. 8 But for seven days you shall present an offering by fire to [lit. Yahoah]. On the seventh day is a holy convocation; you shall not do any laborious work.” (NASB)

The following commenced on this day in history (evening of 4/4 and morning of 4/5) on 15 Abib — the fourth day of the week

Numbers 33:2 Moses recorded their starting places according to their journeys by the command of [lit. Yahoah], and these are their journeys according to their starting places. 3 They journeyed from Rameses in the first month, on the fifteenth day of the first month; on the next day after the Passover the sons of Israel started out boldly in the sight of all the Egyptians, 4 while the Egyptians were burying all their firstborn whom [lit. Yahoah] had struck down among them. [Lit. Yahoah] had also executed judgments on their gods. (NASB)

Notice in the time of the Exodus that the Passover was clearly the day before the fifteenth in the first month (i.e., 14 Abib); this was corrupted much later under rabbinic Judaism as the Passover became confused with the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread (Heb. Chag HaMatzot) on 15 Nisan.

Also note that the Law (Heb. Torah) had not been given to Moses (Heb. Moshe) at this time as 15 Abib became an annual or high Sabbath to serve as a day of remembrance. But once given, here is the Law:

Leviticus 23:6 Then on the fifteenth day of the same month there is the Feast of Unleavened Bread to [lit. Yahoah]; for seven days you shall eat unleavened bread. 7 On the first day you shall have a holy convocation; you shall not do any laborious work. 8 But for seven days you shall present an offering by fire to [lit. Yahoah]. On the seventh day is a holy convocation; you shall not do any laborious work.’” (NASB)

Note that the first (15 Abib) and seventh (21 Abib) days of Unleavened Bread are holy convocations or annual/high Sabbaths.  15 Abib marked the first of three nights (evenings) and days (mornings) that Christ was dead and buried:

Matthew 12:39 But He answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation craves for a sign; and yet no sign will be given to it but the sign of Jonah the prophet; 40 for just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the sea monster, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. (NASB)

Again, I challenge ANYONE to explain how there can be a third night if Christ were crucified on Good Friday and resurrected on Easter/Resurrection Sunday morning.  Folks, if Christ were a liar, then everything in this world is for naught.

Luke 23:54 It was the preparation day, and the Sabbath was about to begin. 55 Now the women who had come with Him out of Galilee followed, and saw the tomb and how His body was laid. 56 Then they returned and prepared spices and perfumes. And on the Sabbath they rested according to the commandment. (NASB)

In verse 54, that Sabbath was the first day of Unleavened Bread on 15 Abib as the Passover/preparation day was drawing to a close and Christ was crucified and quickly buried. As it took time to purchase the ingredients to prepare the burial spices and perfumes, and they could not labor on 15 Abib as it was an annual Sabbath, those days were referencing 16-17 Abib (the second and third FULL “yomim” that Christ was buried). Then, they rested on the weekly Sabbath (18 Abib) in v56. How can this passage possibly be understood any other way?

The following took place in John 19:

John 19:38 After these things Joseph of Arimathea, being a disciple of Jesus, but a secret one for fear of the Jews, asked Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus; and Pilate granted permission. So he came and took away His body. 39 Nicodemus, who had first come to Him by night, also came, bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred pounds weight. 40 So they took the body of Jesus and bound it in linen wrappings with the spices, as is the burial custom of the Jews. 41 Now in the place where He was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb in which no one had yet been laid. 42 Therefore because of the Jewish day of preparation, since the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there. (NASB)

So, Christ’s body had at least initial preparation (and a LOT of it!) at the closing of the Passover/preparation day on 14 Abib based on the efforts of Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus.  Then, the Galilean women saw the tomb and where his body was laid when the (annual) Sabbath was about to begin. Next, they left — and RETURNED with prepared spices and perfumes.  How does this all “magically” occur late in the day on Passover?  In two words: IT DOESN’T!  How can we know with certainty?  The very next verse in Luke:

Luke 24:1 But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb bringing the spices which they had prepared. (NASB)

When did that first day of the week (19 Abib) in 36 CE occur? On the day after the WEEKLY Sabbath (18 Abib)!


Be sure to read the companion articles in the Mo’edim (appointed times) and Agricultural Feasts series:

Shema Yisrael! (Hear, Israel!)

Copyright (C) 1995-2018, L. Alan Schuetz. All rights reserved.


2 Timothy 2:15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth. (NASB)

HaDerech Scroll - Paleo-Hebrew

Preparation Day/Passover vs Unleavened Bread and Weekly vs Annual/High Sabbaths

Exodus 12:1 Now the Lord said to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, 2 “This month shall be the beginning of months for you; it is to be the first month of the year to you. 3 Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying, ‘On the tenth of this month they are each one to take a lamb for themselves, according to their fathers’ households, a lamb for each household. 4 Now if the household is too small for a lamb, then he and his neighbor nearest to his house are to take one according to the number of persons in them; according to what each man should eat, you are to divide the lamb. 5 Your lamb shall be an unblemished male a year old; you may take it from the sheep or from the goats. 6 You shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month, then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel is to kill it at twilight. 7 Moreover, they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses in which they eat it. 8 They shall eat the flesh that same night, roasted with fire, and they shall eat it with unleavened bread and bitter herbs. 9 Do not eat any of it raw or boiled at all with water, but rather roasted with fire, both its head and its legs along with its entrails. 10 And you shall not leave any of it over until morning, but whatever is left of it until morning, you shall burn with fire. 11 Now you shall eat it in this manner: with your loins girded, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and you shall eat it in haste — it is the Lord’s Passover. 12 For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments — I am the Lord. 13 The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live; and when I see the blood I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt. (NASB)

Before picking up with the rest of the story, let’s take a brief intermission to explore the following:

  • Passover,
  • Unleavened Bread,
  • Preparation Day, and
  • The Weekly vs. Annual/High Sabbaths.

By Christ’s time when incarnate (c. 6-36 CE), rabbinic Judaism (Matthew 23:8) had corrupted the Law (Torah) so badly that they confused the Passover with the first day of Unleavened Bread with both occurring on 15 Nisan; that continues to this day.

This is what the Law states:

Leviticus 23:5 In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at twilight is the Lord’s (lit. Yahoah’s) Passover. (NASB)

Exodus 12:5 Your lamb shall be an unblemished male a year old; you may take it from the sheep or from the goats. 6 You shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month, then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel is to kill it at twilight. (NASB)

What’s interesting about verse 5 is that Christ is the unblemished (i.e., sinless) Lamb of God. Most theologians believe that Christ’s ministry lasted three and a half years as three Passovers are mentioned in the Book of John. What they fail to realize is that there is a Second Passover (Heb. Pesach Sheni) on the 14th day of the SECOND month on the fifth day of the week each year IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE LAW!

Numbers 9:9 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 10 “Speak to the sons of Israel, saying, ‘If any one of you or of your generations becomes unclean because of a dead person, or is on a distant journey, he may, however, observe the Passover to the Lord. 11 In the second month on the fourteenth day at twilight, they shall observe it; they shall eat it with unleavened bread and bitter herbs. 12 They shall leave none of it until morning, nor break a bone of it; according to all the statute of the Passover they shall observe it. 13 But the man who is clean and is not on a journey, and yet neglects to observe the Passover, that person shall then be cut off from his people, for he did not present the offering of the Lord at its appointed time. That man will bear his sin. 14 If an alien sojourns among you and observes the Passover to the Lord, according to the statute of the Passover and according to its ordinance, so he shall do; you shall have one statute, both for the alien and for the native of the land.’” (NASB)

Author’s Note: The word “alien” (Heb. ger[im]) in v14 is in regard to a proselyte to Judaism.

Christ’s ministry was, in fact, slightly over a year and a half total! He certainly met ALL the requirements of Exodus 12:5 — He was an unblemished, male, one-year old, Lamb of God! As will be discussed in an article later in the year, His ministry on Earth lasted EXACTLY 574 yomim or 1.58 Qumran calendar years. And, just to be clear, Abib — NOT Nisan (nor Tishri) — is the first month per the Law:

Deuteronomy 16:1 “Observe the month of Abib and celebrate the Passover to the Lord your God, for in the month of Abib the Lord your God brought you out of Egypt by night.” (NASB)

Again, the pagan Masoretic calendar was followed in Jerusalem at that time. That is one of many reasons why the “sect” called The Way (Heb. HaDerech) in Acts separated themselves from the corruption being practiced in Jerusalem with:

  1. the chaste, male, Jewish priests, Levites, Israelites, and proselytes in the desert wilderness of Qumran 15 miles to the east [i.e., the voice crying out in the wilderness], and
  2. the Congregation of men and women in Damascus, Syria.

Where was Saul (Heb. Sha’ul) going to persecute the men and women of The Way under direct orders from the Great Sanhedrin (Acts 22:4-5)? Damascus (Acts 9:1-19, 22:3-21)! Flavius Josephus, a Jewish historian and self-described Pharisee, derogatorily referred to this sect as Essenes (=pious ones). They NEVER referred to themselves as such and were certainly NOT a branch of the Pharisees! See what Christ thought of Pharisees in Matthew 23.

What exactly is the Preparation Day? It is the day immediately preceding a sabbath, a holy convocation and day of rest. As a sabbath is a day of rest, even no meal preparation was permitted! Most people know about the weekly sabbaths, but few know about the ANNUAL or HIGH sabbaths. During Unleavened Bread, there are TWO annual sabbaths, the first and seventh days of the feast:

Leviticus 23:6 Then on the fifteenth day of the same month there is the Feast of Unleavened Bread to the Lord; for seven days you shall eat unleavened bread. 7 On the first day you shall have a holy convocation; you shall not do any laborious work. 8 But for seven days you shall present an offering by fire to the Lord. On the seventh day is a holy convocation; you shall not do any laborious work.’” (NASB)

The day before these two annual sabbaths would be a preparation day. What day fell before the first annual sabbath of Unleavened Bread on 15 Abib? The Passover, which is a Preparation Day, on 14 Abib!

How can “New Testament-only Christians” fully understand the NT without understanding the OT? Are you getting this yet? Christ was NOT crucified on Good Friday and resurrected on Easter Sunday morning; He was crucified on the Passover (14 Abib) — the THIRD day of the week — and was quickly buried before the ANNUAL sabbath on the first day of Unleavened Bread!

Also, He was buried for three days AND NIGHTS per the Jonah prophesy:

Matthew 12:39 But He answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation craves for a sign; and yet no sign will be given to it but the sign of Jonah the prophet; 40 for just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the sea monster, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. (NASB)

I challenge anyone to explain how one arrives at three NIGHTS if Christ were crucified and buried on Good Friday with His empty tomb discovered Easter Sunday morning. Is the Son of God a liar? We have been deceived since the Council of Nicaea. He was dead and buried from 15-17 Abib, was resurrected as Lord of the (weekly) sabbath (Matthew 12:8) on 18 Abib, and His empty tomb was discovered early (during the waning hours of “evening” just before daybreak) on the first day of the week (19 Abib)!

Shema Yisrael! (Hear, Israel!) Your Redeemer — the Lamb of God, the Suffering Servant of Isaiah 53 — is Yehoshu’a HaMashiach (Joshua the Messiah)!


Be sure to read the companion articles in the Passover/Unleavened Bread series as well as the events leading up to them:

Copyright (C) 2018, L. Alan Schuetz. All rights reserved.


2 Timothy 2:15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth. (NASB)

HaDerech Scroll - Paleo-Hebrew