The Other I

April 18, 2011

Biblical discrepancies

Filed under: Catholicism and other questions of religion,Uncategorized — theotheri @ 8:02 pm

For fundamentalists who believe that every word in the Bible is literally and absolutely true, the fact that the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke put the Last Supper on a different day than John puts it is a difficulty mostly to be denied or at best ignored.  For Biblical scholars, it is a problem to be solved.

Maundy Thursday « Matt Zainea | Fish of a Different Color

Essentially, the question seems to have been whether the Last Supper took place with the start of the Passover or, as John claims, on the day before that.

Now, a professor at Cambridge University thinks he has solved the conundrum.  He says that research indicates that there were two different calendars used to determine Passover.  One is the lunar calendar which puts the Last Supper on a Thursday.  But there was also a more ancient calendar in use in among the Hebrews in the first century that would put the start of Passover, and so the Last Supper, on a Wednesday.

A Last Supper on Wednesday would make more sense, in that it doesn’t mean that the arrest of Jesus in the Garden, his interrogation and two separate trials took place not in less than 24 hours, but in closer to 48.  This interpretation also eliminates the apparent contradiction between the various gospels which would solve a problem for fundamentalists.

But it would fix Good Friday on April 3, and Easter on April 5 every year.

That might ruffle some cherished certainties about how things are supposed to be.


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