On the third day Jesus was raised to life. We follow in our theme of “three things” which in most cases is just by accident, or is it? In an article called, “Why did Jesus Rise on the Third Day?” by Derek Hiebert we read…
Perhaps, the clearest examples of a third day resurrection in the Hebrew Scriptures is found in Jonah 1:17. “And the Lord appointed a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.”
Hosea spoke of God’s resurrecting work for Israel as occurring on the third day. “Come, let us return to the Lord; for he has torn us, that he may heal us; he has struck us down, and he will bind us up. After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will raise us up, that we may live before him.” Hosea 6:1-2, ESV.
Where do we see the first peek into the three-day significance? Page one of the Bible. The creation account in Genesis 1 is written like a poem with repetitive statements and parallels. Within the rhythm of these repetitions, two events in the creation narrative stand out as significant, each happening at three-day intervals. On the first “third day”, God makes dry land appear, and causes vegetation to come up out of the earth: plants yielding seeds and trees bearing fruit (1:11-13). The picture here is of new life sprouting or rising up from the ground.
The second “third day” event happens on the sixth day when God creates animals and human beings (1:24). Reminiscent of the first “third day”, the passage says that the earth will bring forth living creatures (1:24-27). Later we read that God formed humans from the dust of the ground (2:7). Again, here we see new life created out of the ground.
Jesus fulfilled all of the promises made in Scripture when he rose from death to life on the third day. He spoke to the Disciples after His resurrection…Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance for the forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.” Luke 24:45-47, ESV.