Monday, April 18, 2011

Who Buried Jesus: Joseph of Arimathea, Nicodemus or the Rulers of the Jews?

Matthew 27:57-60, Mark 15:43-46 and Luke 23:5-53 each state the Joseph of Arimathea took down and buried the body of Jesus. John 19:38-42 says the same thing, only adding one piece of information the others did not: Nicodemus helped Joseph. That’s not a problem, nor is it a contradiction. So what?

Well, Acts 13:27-29 says that the Jews and their rulers crucified, took down and buried the body of Jesus. “For those who live in Jerusalem, and their rulers, recognizing neither Him nor the utterances of the prophets which are read every Sabbath, fulfilled these by condemning Him. And though they found no ground for putting Him to death, they asked Pilate that He be executed. When they had carried out all that was written concerning Him, they took Him down from the cross and laid Him in a tomb.” 

Ok, so who are the Jews and their rulers?

Mark 15:43 shows that Joseph of Arimathea is both a Jew and a ruler, “Joseph of Arimathea came, a prominent member of the Council, who himself was waiting for the kingdom of God; and he gathered up courage and went in before Pilate, and asked for the body of Jesus.” And they buried Jesus according to the custom of the Jews.

Nicodemus is also both a Jew and a ruler. John 3:1 identifies him thus, “Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews.”

So Acts 13:27-29 is correct!

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