ACTS 12:4: EASTER? OR PASSOVER?

Acts 12:1-4:
Now about that time Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church. And he killed James the brother of John with the sword. And because he saw it pleased the Jews, he proceeded further to take Peter also. (Then were the days of unleavened bread.) And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people.

Yet another false charge, false accusation leveled against the KJV or, as they like to call it, a "problem" or an "unfortunate mistranslation" in the KJB is in Acts 12:4, where the Greek word "pascha" ("πασχα") is rendered "Easter" instead of "Passover". Although "Passover" is usually the correct translation, the context of Acts 12:1-4 demands fully that it is and has to be rendered as "Easter" here.

"Modern" "versions" of the English Bible translate this word "pascha" as "Passover" here and, by doing, rather than correcting an "unfortunate mistranslation", they actually inject one!

Now think about this one. The King James is the only actual English translation that actually exists anyways, and it has the correct word here, thereby making this error in the modern versions a glaring mistake. This sets the King James Bible far apart from and above all others. Even the forerunners to the KJV, the 1534 William Tyndale, the 1557 Geneva Bible, the 1539 Great Bible [Cranmer's], the 1568 Bishops' Bible as well as other pre-King James English versions also are translated "Easter" here.

Since so many reject their own English Scriptures that God gave them, wishing to run to a foreign, dead language they do not understand, read, speak, study in, teach or preach in, it is prudent to show here that, even then, words fail them.

That Greek word, "pascha" ("πασχα") is rendered "Easter" instead of "Passover" only in this one passage, out of twenty nine times translated. That is twenty eight times as "Passover"; once as "Easter". A bell ought to go off in one's head, saying, "Why on earth did they translate that as "Easter" here and no other place in Scripture that the Greek word "Pascha" appears? It never even occurs to them that the translators were correct! These brave men in 1611 knew, spoke and wrote Greek and Hebrew so well, that people often thought it was their first language. They intentionally chose "Easter" over "Passover". There was no Greek word for "Easter" at that time, so the Holy Spirit also chose "pascha" at Acts 12:4. Make no mistake, these men knew that he word "pascha" was most often translated as Passover, so it was not missed! They chose, specifically, to translate it as Easter, because it had to be, based upon the context. It simply could not be Passover.

Floyd Nolen Jones Book, Which Version Is The Bible?

In verse three, says that the apostle Peter was arrested during the "days of unleavened bread". Any student of the Old Testamen knows full well that the Passover was commanded to be slain on the 14th of Nisan, the seven days following were to be the feast of unleavened bread (specifically, Nisan 15th-21st). Passover was over ,so to call it Passover here is to insert an error in doctrine, due to incorrect timing, dueto personal interpretation. Manyprevious translations in various languages leading up to the King James agree with this translation as Easter as well.

Worse than this is two questions:

  1. How did the translators of the KJV know this?
  2. Worse, how do the people who corrupted this in the "modern" "versions" NOT know this?

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(2 Timothy 2:15)
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

2 Timothy 3:1-9
This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith. But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as theirs also was.

A TEXT WITHOUT A CONTEXT IS A PRETEXT

Before any clear, concise, and complete study can be done in God's Word, it must always, always be remembered that we need to do it the way God wants us to, the way those in the Bible itself did it, including Jesus. Not the way most mainstream Christians, pastors and authors do. The way God wants us to. This is only done by using the context of any word or verse to determine the meaning, and not allowing private interpretation.. We are called to READ God's Word, not READ INTO it. Read it with the eyes of faith, not with pre-conceived notions, often gotten from others.

Isaiah 28:10:
For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:

Isaiah 28:13:
But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken.

Deuteronomy 4:2:
Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.

Revelation of John 22:18, 29:
For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

The above verses clearly state that the context of any verse in God's Word determines it's meaning, in any area of study. It further states that we must not add or subtract to that which is there, which we are given, neither with pen and paper nor with our mind. Failure to grasp this leads always to error.

THE CONTEXT

  • The proximal context (nearby, adjoining verses)
  • Distal context (the chapter, the book, in fact the whole of the rest of God's Word, in conjunction with the verse(s) read)
  • Historical context
  • Personal context-WHO is speaking and, if God is, TO WHOM exactly is God speaking and what about?
  • In addition to all of this, it has to be said that any important doctrine cannot be established, or overturned, by a single verse IF there are many verses dealing with a doctrine, which is what contexts are indeed even for. For instance, if there are 400 verses on a subject, and a person takes one or two which SEEM contradictory and uses (read ABUSES) them to "refute the interpretation" of the doctrine, ignoring the hundreds of other verses, then it is not a doctrine from the Word of God, it is a false doctrine, a prophecy of Scripture, privately interpreted (2 Peter 1:20).

2 Peter 1:20:
Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.

Etymology Online

Easter (n.)
Origin and meaning of Easter
Old English Easterdaeg, from Eastre (Northumbrian Eostre), from Proto-Germanic *austron-, "dawn," also the name of a goddess of fertility and spring, perhaps originally of sunrise, whose feast was celebrated at the spring equinox, from *aust- "east, toward the sunrise" (compare east), from PIE root *aus- (1) "to shine," especially of the dawn.

Bede says Anglo-Saxon Christians adopted her name and many of the celebratory practices for their Mass of Christ's resurrection. Almost all neighboring languages use a variant of Latin Pascha to name this holiday (see paschal).

Easter egg is attested by 1825, earlier pace egg (1610s). Easter bunny is attested by 1904 in children's lessons; Easter rabbit is by 1888; the paganish customs of Easter seem to have grown popular c. 1900; before that they were limited to German immigrants.

If the children have no garden, they make nests in the wood-shed, barn, or house. They gather colored flowers for the rabbit to eat, that it may lay colored eggs. If there be a garden, the eggs are hidden singly in the green grass, box-wood, or elsewhere. On Easter Sunday morning they whistle for the rabbit, and the children imagine that they see him jump the fence. After church, on Easter Sunday morning, they hunt the eggs, and in the afternoon the boys go out in the meadows and crack eggs or play with them like marbles. Or sometimes children are invited to a neighbor's to hunt eggs. [Phebe Earle Gibbons, "Pennsylvania Dutch," Philadelphia 1882]

paschal (adj.)
"of or pertaining to Passover or Easter," early 15c., from Old French paschal (12c.) and directly from Late Latin paschalis, from pascha "Passover, Easter," from Greek pascha "Passover," from Aramaic (Semitic) pasha "pass over," corresponding to Hebrew pesah, from pasah "he passed over" (see Passover). Pasche was an early Middle English term for "Easter" (see Easter), and the older Dutch form of the word, Paas, was retained in New York.

A study here

The Greek word, "πασχα (pascha)", is correctly translated as "Passover" 28 times in the New Testament in the KJV. For this reason, some critics say that the KJV's isolated instance of translating the word as "Easter" in Acts 12:4 is an error. These critics agree with translations such as the ESV, NIV, NASB, NKJV, RSV, CEB anf many, in fact most others. which have "Passover" in Acts 12:4. This article explains why the KJV is correct in translating "Pascha" as "Easter" in Acts 12:4. To begin with, we must set the record straight that "Easter" is not a pagan word. We do this by studying the origin of the actual word.

THE PASSOVER

Exodus 12:13-18:
And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt. And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the LORD throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever. Seven days shall ye eat unleavened bread; even the first day ye shall put away leaven out of your houses: for whosoever eateth leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that soul shall be cut off from Israel. And in the first day there shall be an holy convocation to you; no manner of work shall be done in them, save that which every man must eat, that only may be done of you.
And ye shall observe the feast of unleavened bread; for in this selfsame day have I brought your armies out of the land of Egypt: therefore shall ye observe this day in your generations by an ordinance for ever. In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at even ye shall eat unleavened bread, until the one and twentieth day of the month at even.

Deuteronomy 16:1-8:
Observe the month of Abib (April), and keep the passover unto the LORD thy God: for in the month of Abib the LORD thy God brought thee forth out of Egypt by night. Thou shalt therefore sacrifice the passover unto the LORD thy God, of the flock and the herd, in the place which the LORD shall choose to place his name there. Thou shalt eat no leavened bread with it; seven days shalt thou eat unleavened bread therewith, even the bread of affliction: for thou camest forth out of the land of Egypt in haste: that thou mayest remember the day when thou camest forth out of the land of Egypt all the 0days of thy life.
And there shall be no leavened bread seen with thee in all thy coast seven days; neither shall there any thing of the flesh, which thou sacrificedst the first day at even, remain all night until the morning. Thou mayest not sacrifice the passover within any of thy gates, which the LORD thy God giveth thee: But at the place which the LORD thy God shall choose to place his name in, there thou shalt sacrifice the passover at even, at the going down of the sun, at the season that thou camest forth out of Egypt. And thou shalt roast and eat it in the place which the LORD thy God shall choose: and thou shalt turn in the morning, and go unto thy tents. Six days thou shalt eat unleavened bread: and on the seventh day shall be a solemn assembly to the LORD thy God: thou shalt do no work therein.

II Chronicles 8:13:
Even after a certain rate every day, offering according to the commandment of Moses, on the sabbaths, and on the new moons, and on the solemn feasts, three times in the year, even in the feast of unleavened bread, and in the feast of weeks, and in the feast of tabernacles.

II Chronicles 30:l5,21:
Then they killed the passover on the fourteenth day of the second month: and the priests and the Levites were ashamed, and sanctified themselves, and brought in the burnt offerings into the house of the LORD. And the children of lsrael that were present at Jerusalem kept the feast of unleavened bread seven days with great gladness: and the Levites and the priests praised the LORD day by day, singing with loud instruments unto the LORD.

  1. On the 14th of April the lamb was killed. This is the passover. Nothing after the 14th is ever referred to as the passover.
  2. On the morning of the 15th, the days of unleavened bread , or the feast of unleavened bread, start.

ACTS 12:3: THEN WERE THE DAYS OF UNLEAVENED BREAD

This is not complicated, with a carfeul, simple study of God's Word, in either language, Greek or English. A simple word origin (etymology) check reveals the same answer, no matter how you want to look at it.

Even a simple, quick check on a Jewish calendar tells you the order ofevents makes it impossible for this to be the Passover.
  • Passover: April 14-15, 2022
  • Feast of Unleavened Breads: April 15-22, 2022
  • Feast of First Fruits: April 16-17, 2022
  • Counting the Omer: April 17 – June 4, 2022
  • Feast of Weeks/Pentecost: June 4-5, 2022
  • Feast of Trumpets: September 27-28, 2022
  • Day of Atonement: October 6-7, 2022
  • Feast of Tabernacles/Shelters/Harvest: October 11-18, 2022
  • The Eighth Day: October 18-19, 2022
Acts 12:3,4:
And because he saw it pleased the Jews, he proceeded further to take Peter also. (Then were the days of unleavened bread.) And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people.

  • Passover is a MEAL
  • That MEAL occurs on a particular DAY (our calendar is April 14th)
  • The feast of unleavened bread starts AFTER the Passover (April 15th, onward), in Scripture and out!

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