Peter used the sky as a proof that Messiah had come, but which sky did he use? Because no work could be done on the Sabbath, which we call Saturday, Friday came to be known as Preparation Day (2).A body of scholarly work addresses the date of the crucifixion of Jesus of Nazareth. It was a day when food and other things needed for Saturday were prepared in advance. But that does not make it unknowable or unimportant. To be clear, the Bible does not explicitly specify the precise date of Jesus’s crucifixion and it is not an essential salvation truth.It also seems clear from the Gospels that Jesus died before the beginning of the Jewish Sabbath, and hence on a Friday, at the time of the Passover, which occurs at a full Moon and takes place on 15th Nisan (corresponding to March/April).Allowing for differences of opinion as to whether Jesus was crucified on 14th or 15th Nisan, all we need to do is find out when the 14th or 15th Nisan fell on a Friday in the period 26 to 36 AD. In a study of this topic, published in the prestigious scientific journal in 1983, Colin Humphreys and Graeme Waddington improved on earlier attempts to use astronomical calculations to determine the relevant dates. To do this they had to calculate when the lunar crescent following a new Moon and marking the beginning of the Jewish month would have first been visible from Jerusalem.
Interestingly, it might well have taken place on Friday 3rd April in the year 33 AD.The following astronomical data in the first three columns below was obtained from the U. Naval Observatory Astronomical Applications Department. The pertinent file may be accessed on the Internet at .The times of day given in the second and third columns have been adjusted 2 hours from U. Naval Observatory figures to account for the difference between Jerusalem Israel and Greenwich England (universal) time.The date of the Crucifixion has been debated for many years, but there has been no agreement on the year nor the day.Yes, there is more in the sky which declares “Messiah has come.” But to see these things, we must know when to look up. By law and custom, the Jewish people of Jesus’ day took the Sabbath as a day of complete rest (1).