Today in Catholic History – The Crucifixion of Jesus Christ

There are several indications from astronomical investigation that point to the date of Friday 3 April 33 AD as the date of the death of Jesus. Of course, this conclusion lacks the historical certainty that we might wish – we don’t have a death certificate –  but does appear to be accurate based upon the scriptural, historical and astronomical evidence presently available.

The first to use astronomy to calculate the date of Jesus’ death was Isaac Newton who compared the visibility of the moon in both the Hebrew and Julian calendars and came up with the date of Friday 23 April 34 AD. But later analysis of Newton’s calculations identified a minor error, involving an characteristic of the Jewish calendar during Newton’s time which was not present at the time of Jesus. When this error was corrected, a date in 33 AD appears as more correct according to the astronomers John Pratt and Bradley Schaefer.

In 2003, using a computer program astronomers Liviu Mircea and Tiberiu Oproiu calculated the death of Jesus for 3 pm on Friday 3 April 33 AD and his resurrection on the 5th of April.

Using the completely different approach of a lunar eclipse model, Profs. Colin Humphreys and W. G. Waddington of Oxford University also arrived at the conclusion that Friday 3 April 33 AD was the date of the Crucifixion.

More Links:
Astronomer Wants to Find the Exact Date of the Crucifixion
Exact Date of the Crucifixion
Multimedia files of Dr. Colin Humphreys explaining his investigation of the date of the crucifixion – both audio and video


One Comment

  1. Posted June 20, 2010 at 7:37 am | Permalink | Reply

    A Lesson from a Fig Tree?
    1. In the traditional belief scholars are divided between a Passover Nisan 14 crucifixion occurring on a Friday full moon of April 7, 30 A.D. or a Friday full moon of April 3, of 33 A.D. Some believe as well in a crucifixion occurring on a Wednesday full moon of March 24, 34 A.D..
    In Matthew 21:18 and Mark 11:13 we read about Jesus condemning a fig tree that bore no fruit to unfulfil his hunger in a time of yielding produce. In Matthew 24:32, Mark 13:28 and Luke 21:30 we read about the observation of fig shoots resembling a time near summer. All these biblical accounts were of a time, leading up to Jesus’ last Passover. Were these the indications of a late Passover cycle likely due to an intercalary month (Adar II) being added on to the preceding year before the first month of Nisan (Abib)? On the contrary, did Jesus condemn a fig tree too early where the natural cycle to bear fruit had not been advanced? The likeliness of an added intercalary month would necessitate some further growing time as a requirement for the ripening of nature in these scriptural passages. Likewise a scriptural account in Luke 6:1 shows reasonably near an earlier Passover (31 A.D.) where ‘corn’ was ripe enough to eat when the growing season had matured.
    If the pre-final Passover cursing of the fig tree event occurred on the day of procurement (Nisan 10th) thus should have been either; Monday April 3rd 30 A.D., Monday March 30th 33 A.D., Saturday March 20th 34 A.D., or later on Sunday April 18th in 34 A.D. after ADAR II.

One Trackback

  1. By 33 A.D. and Black Sheep « pepulma on July 26, 2012 at 12:10 pm

    […] real identity and had not heard of Him before, what would have I done if I lived in Jerusalem in 33 A.D.? Which side would I take if I were one of the very fortunate souls who saw Jesus in […]

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