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Holy Days


Part Four


Passover and the Roots of Anti-Semitism in the Christian Church

OK, we know that the Passover took place on the 6th day of the week (Friday) the year Jesus died and today the major population of the Christian church celebrates good Friday to commemorate his death, but in all actuality Passover took place on a Wednesday this year. In fact, there is only a one in seven chance that Passover will fall on a Friday in any given year. So where did the confusion come from? Why didn't the Christian Church commemorate Wednesday this year with the Jews? 

In the early 4th century, the Roman emperor Constantine abolished the biblical Passover system so that the time takes place on the same day of the week (Good Friday). It certainly makes things convenient so not to interfere with the economic cycles. And I think that Roman’s had this in mind. But remembering the death of Christ according to the weekly cycle is not biblical. 

In order to accomplish this, Emperor Constantine cemented anti-Semitic attitudes into the minds of the Christian church that have not been erased. here is a quote from Constantine as he worked his thinking into the minds of the Christian leaders. Remember that at the time this statement was made, Jews who believed in Jesus as the Messiah were still highly influential in the Christian movement.

Constantine wrote: "It was, in the first place, declared improper to follow the custom of the Jews in the celebration of this holy festival, because, their hands having been stained with crime, the minds of these wretched men are necessarily blinded. ... Let us, then, have nothing in common with the Jews, who are our adversaries. ... Let us ... studiously avoiding all contact with that evil way. ... For how can they entertain right views on any point who, after having compassed the death of the Lord, being out of their minds, are guided not by sound reason, but by an unrestrained passion, wherever their innate madness carries them. ... lest your pure minds should appear to share in the customs of a people so utterly depraved. ... Therefore, this irregularity must be corrected, in order that we may no more have any thing in common with those parricides and the murderers of our Lord. ... no single point in common with the perjury of the Jews." (Constantine - Theodoret's Ecclesiastical History)

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