Ask Your Preacher

Ask Your Preacher

“The Longest Three Days”

Why did God choose the third day to raise Jesus up?  Is there a reason for the third day?


Dear Counting,

There are several reasons that the Scriptures give us for why Jesus was raised on the third day, and there may be more reasons that God didn’t tell us.  The secret things belong to God (Deu 29:29)… some questions won’t get answered until we see Him in heaven.  Here is what we know:

  1. Jesus was raised on the third day because that is when He prophesied He would be raised (Lk 24:7).  Jesus fulfilled every prophecy He made, right down to the details of how long He would stay in the grave.
  2. Jesus’ burial is compared to Jonah’s time in the belly of the great fish (Matt 12:40).  The Old Testament was full of parallels to Christ because the Old Testament was a tutor to lead people to Christ (Gal 3:24-25).  Jonah’s three days and nights in the big fish were another example of an allusion to Christ.
  3. Jesus’ three days in the tomb left no doubt that He was truly dead.  Jesus was in the tomb so that all could witness that He did indeed fully die and was buried (Acts 10:37-40).

As we said, there are probably more reasons that the Father had in mind when He chose to leave Jesus’ body in the grave for three days, but those are the reasons He has deemed appropriate for us to know from the Scriptures.