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Updated 4/25/09

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(1) "During the first 10 years of their history Adventists generally observed the Sabbath from 6 p.m. Friday to 6 p.m. Saturday, although some kept it from SUNRISE to sunrise." (The Time of The Crucifixion and the Resurrection, Chapter 6).

(2) Following are some of the key words that I believe will be helpful to you should you decide to do your own study on this subject: "Day", "Time", "Hour", "Sabbath", "Calendar", "Judaism", "Light", "Night", "Clock", "Natural Day" and "Civil Day".

(3) The "Abingdon Bible Commentary" states the following under the word "Time": "The word "hour" does not occur in the O.T., except in the Aramaic section of Daniel, but the division of the NIGHT into three watches, the beginning, middle, and last (also called morning watch), and DAY into MORNING, NOONDAY, and EVENING....The interval "between the two evenings" (Ex. 12:6, 30:8, Num. 9:3 R.V., mg.) refers to the time between sunset and darkness, also called "the cool of the day" (Gen. 3:8) in contrast with "the heat of the day" or high noon (Gen. 18:1)." (Notice the same pattern over and over again. The Day begins with Morning and Evening is near the end of the Day, and it is NOT the beginning of a New Day).

(4) Although this well known author and respected advocate for the Sabbath observes a Friday sunset to Saturday sunset Sabbath, he writes: "...NUMEROUS SCHOLARS have argued for the existence in Bible times of a SUNRISE METHOD OF DAY RECKONING...the evidence for the SUNRISE RECKONING IS SIGNIFICANT AND CANNOT BE IGNORED..." (The Time of The Crucifixion and The Resurrection, Chapter 5). This author believes that both sunset and sunrise methods were used in Biblical times.

(5) "...In EARLIER TRADITIONS a DAY apparently began at SUNRISE (E.G., Lev. 7:15-17; Judg. 19:4-19)..." I used the first part of this quote earlier. What I did not use follows: "...LATER its beginning was at SUNSET and its end at the FOLLOWING SUNSET...This system BECAME NORMATIVE... and is still observed in JEWISH TRADITION, where for example , the Sabbath begins on Friday evening at Sunset and ends Saturday at Sunset..." (Oxford Companion To The Bible, p. 744).

(6) "From a very early period the time of reckoning the day was from sunset to sunset, and this BECAME THE JEWISH METHOD..." (Unger's Bible Dictionary, "Day", p. 1098). (Note: This quote and the previous quote informs us that the sunset to sunset method "LATER" "BECAME" "NORMATIVE" or "THE JEWISH METHOD"----NOT THAT IT WAS THE METHOD USED FROM THE BEGINNING.

(7) "It is a fact, though one perhaps not generally realized, that the twelve divisions on the dials of our clocks and watches have a BABYLONIAN, and ultimately a Sumerian ancestry. For why is it we divide the day into twenty-four hours? We have a decimal system of reckoning, we count by tens; why then should we divide the day and night into twelve hours each, instead of into ten or some multiple of ten? The reason is that the BABYLONIANS divided the day into TWELVE DOUBLE-HOURS; and the Greeks took over their ancient system of time-division along with their knowledge of astronomy and passed it on to US. So if WE OURSELVES, after more than two thousand years, are making use of an OLD CUSTOM FROM BABYLON, it would not be surprising if the HEBREWS, a contemporary race, should have fallen under her influence even before they were carried away as captives and settled forcibly upon her river-banks." (Legends of Babylon and Egypt in Relation To Hebrew Tradition, By Leonard W. King, Assistant Keeper of Egyptian and Assyrian Antiquities in the British Museum, Professor in the University of London King's College. From a 1916 lecture).

(8) In a very early post Biblical writing attributed to Clement of Rome (a.d. 30-100), who is generally thought to be the Clement mentioned by the Apostle Paul in Philippians 4:3, we read: "The heavens swaying peacefully under HIS direction are subject unto Him. DAY and NIGHT fulfil THEIR ORDERED COURSE, in no wise hindering one another. SUN and MOON, and starry choir, in accordance with His command, roll harmoniously along THEIR FIXED ORBITS WITHOUT ANY DEVIATION..." (A Literary History of Early Christianity, p. 38--By Charles Thomas Crutwell, M.A., Vol. 1, AMS Press, New York). ---I found it interesting that Clement said the "ORDERED COURSE" was "DAY and NIGHT" and "SUN and MOON". He separates Day and Night just as Paul does. He does not indicate that Day and Night together equal a 24 hour day. Just an interesting thought.

(9) Commenting on Genesis 1:5 This Author writes: "...To the Light He gives the name Day, to the Darkness the name Night...Thus the work of the first day, reckoned probably FROM MORNING to morning, is accomplished. The period of Light is FOLLOWED by Evening and Darkness, which comes to an end with the NEXT MORNING WHEN THE SECOND DAY BEGINS..." (Peake's Commentary on The Bible, p. 136).

(10) "Sabbath day may be used of the DAY FOLLOWED BY THE NIGHT, according to a possible understanding of the language. The JEWS originally counted from Evening to Evening, but this CUSTOM DID NOT PREVAIL UNIVERSALLY. Jonah (1:17) and Matthew (12:40) speak of three Days and three Nights, Following Day by the Night...". (Harmony of The Gospels, p. 289).

(11) "The Hebrew language had no word for HOUR and those who spoke and wrote it no idea whatever of such a period of time...In place of hours, which meant nothing to him, the ancient Hebrew often lived and thought in terms of SEASONS...he cried unto God in the NIGHT SEASON. In the first chapter of Genesis God has seemingly himself determined this division of time, for He has placed the sun and the moon in the firmament of heaven "to Divide the Day from the Night"...When Hebrew writers refer to the ONLY TIMES OF DAY RECOGNIZED BY THEM, they do so in terms of the NATURAL divisions of MORNING, NOON and EVENING, times which, of course, varied in length depending upon the actual seasons of the year..." (Life and Language in the Old Testament, p. 33,36,37). (Notice the same Natural pattern over and over again).

(12) "There was a SACRED year, and a CIVIL year. The SACRED year began in the SPRING. The CIVIL year began in the FALL (My note: not Biblical). The 7th Sacred month was the 1st Civil month...The NATURAL DAY was from SUNRISE to sunset...The CIVIL DAY (my note: not Biblical) was from Sunset to Sunset..." (Halley's Bible Handbook, p. 148).

(13) "(1) Argument from primary meaning. The preponderant usage of the word Yom ("day") in the Old Testament is of a NORMAL DAY as experienced regularly by man (though it may be LIMITED to the HOURS OF LIGHT, as per COMMON UNDERSTANDING). The word occurs 1704 times in the Old Testament, the overwhelming majority of which have to do with the normal cycle of DAILY earth time..." (Reformed Theology and Six-Day Creation).

(14) "We know little about the old Israelite calendar, apart from the laws of the festivals. But the Mishnah (the collection of Jewish law made at the end of the 2nd century AD) fully describes the system which the Jews had worked out under BABYLONIAN INFLUENCE...Basically, all calendars are determined by the sun, moon and stars. The SUN gives us the BASIC UNIT OF THE DAY..." (Eerdman's Handbook to the Bible).

(15) "Although certain peoples of antiquity MADE the CIVIL DAY begin either in the morning, at midday, or at midnight, others (Athenians, Germani, nomads, etc.) and the Israelites in particular, counted THEIR day from one sunset to the other...This practice was perpetuated throughout the ages among the Jews...But it is clear that the Israelites also understood by "Day" the time during which the EARTH WAS LIT UP: the NATURAL DAY, that of ordinary life, in CONTRAST to NIGHT..." (A Dictionary of Life in Bible Times, p. 95). (Note: How many times have we been told that the NATURAL DAY according to the Bible begins at Sunset?).

(16) "Before the EXILE the Hebrews divided the day into MORNING, NOON, and EVENING...they also described it in terms of four periods: SUNRISE (Gen.19:15, "when MORNING DAWNED" (cf. Luke 24:1; 19:23, "when the Sun had Risen"; 32:31, "the Sun Rose" (cf. Mark 16:1), the heat of the DAY (Gen. 18:1; 1 Sam.11:11), the cool of the Day (Gen. 3:8), and Sunset (Gen. 15:12, 17; Judg. 19:8, ("until the DAY DECLINES"). (The Eerdman's Bible Dictionary, p. 266).

(17) "The CIVIL DAY was the smallest definite measure of time known to the Hebrews of Old Testament TIMES. It began at sunset and ended the following sunset...The NIGHT was divided into three "watches" (a term which is used in Ps. 119:148). These were known as the first watch, the middle watch, and the morning watch...The DAY in ANCIENT times was similarly divided into THREE PARTS, MORNING, NOONTIDE or "the heat of the day", and EVENING or "the cool of the DAY" (my note: tail end). There are MANY references to events happening "in the Morning", a period which covered from DAWN up to about ten o'clock. The Sun's heat at noon can be extremely fierce, which is why the messengers coming from Yahweh to tell Abraham that he would have a son found him sitting in the shelter of "the tent door in the heat of the day" (Gen. 18:1). By EVENING the Sun's heat has decreased to a pleasurable level, and so it was that the Lord God is described as walking in the Garden of Eden "in the COOL of the DAY" (Gen. 3:8). (The Bible Companion, p. 311).

(18) Speaking of the word "LIGHT" in the first Chapter of Genesis, Vine's states, "to become Light, become Lighted up (of DAYBREAK), give Light, cause Light to shine..."And God said, Let there be light: and there was light" (Gen. 1:3). Here "Light" is the OPPOSITE OF "DARKNESS". (Vine's Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, p. 136).

(19) "The Day divided into 24 hours of 60 minutes of 60 seconds, was the Gift of the sexagesimal system (later combined with a decimal system) of the Ancient Sumerians...In the Biblical period MOST Near Easterners BEGAN THEIR DAY WITH SUNRISE and ended it with sunset..." (Harpers Bible Dictionary, p. 761).

(20) The following is found under the word "TIME" in "The Encyclopedic Dictionary of the Bible, p. 2454-2455:

"...While the Western concept of time is quantitative, in the Biblical concept of time the qualitative element predominates. The Israelites, like the Greeks, determined the passage of time with the help of the sun and the moon, but, whereas the Greeks stressed the uniform movement of what they called "the heavenly bodies," the Israelites were primarily concerned with the LIGHT which came from these heavenly "luminaries" or "lamps" as they called them (Gen. 1:14; Ps. 136:7). This shows that for the Israelites time was something that could be PERCEIVED WITH THE SENSES, while for the Greeks it was something that was DEDUCED MATHEMATICALLY. This Biblical notion of time, as something concretely perceptible, finds expression, not only in the identification of DAY WITH LIGHT, and of NIGHT WITH DARKNESS (Gen. 1:5), but also in such phrases for certain points of time as, "the heat of the day" (Gen. 18:1; 1 Sam. 11:9; 2 Sam. 4:5; Neh. 7:3) for "midday,"..."

(21) "In Israel, the DAY was for a LONG TIME RECKONED FROM MORNING to morning...and it was in fact in the Morning, with the CREATION OF LIGHT, that the world began; the DISTINCTION of Day and Night, and time too, BEGAN ON A MORNING (Gn. 1:3-5, cf. 14:16, 18). The opposite conclusion has been drawn from the refrain which punctuates the story of Creation: 'there was an evening and there was a morning, the first, second, etc., day'; this phrase, however, coming After the description of each creative work (WHICH CLEARLY HAPPENS DURING THE PERIOD OF LIGHT), indicates rather the vacant time till the MORNING, the end of a day and the BEGINNING OF THE NEXT WORK..." This author stresses the fact that originally Days began in the Morning and provides verses that show this and also show the difference between Day and Night: "...Thus in the story of the daughters of Lot: 'The NEXT DAY the elder said of the younger, LAST NIGHT I slept with my father; let us make him drink wine again TO-NIGHT (Gn. 19:34). In the story of the Levite of Ephraim: he stays THREE DAYS with his father-in-law and Stops the NIGHT there. The fourth DAY, he WAKES and wants to depart. He is detained and again Stops the NIGHT. The fifth DAY, the father-in-law says to him: 'Behold, the DAY is FAR ADVANCED TOWARDS EVENING. Spend the NIGHT here again...TO-MORROW, EARLY IN THE MORNING, you will depart...' (Jg. 19:4-9). Saul's henchmen arrive at NIGHT to take David by surprise, and Mikal says to him: 'If you do not escape TO-NIGHT, TO-MORROW you are a dead man' (1 Sam. 19:11). In the house of the witch of Endor, Samuel appears to Saul during the NIGHT and says to him: 'TO-MORROW, you and your sons will be with me' (1 Sam. 28:19). Although this author places emphasis on the fact that when day is mentioned before night a Morning reckoning is indicated and when Night is mentioned before day, an evening reckoning is indicated, he still believes that a day beginning at Evening came at a much Later period. Speaking of the Evening reckoning, he writes: "This method of reckoning is used in New Testament TIMES and under LATER JUDAISM for the SABBATH, the religious feasts and CIVIL LIFE.

The CHANGE OF RECKONING must there fore have taken place between the end of the monarchy and the age of Nehemias..." The Author concludes: "This would bring us to the beginning of the EXILE..." (Ancient Israel, p. 181 - 182).

(22) In March and April of 1999, Paul R. Finch, who believes the Biblical day runs from Sunrise to Sunrise, had some fascinating things to say on an internet forum. Mr. Finch is the author of the book "The Passover Papers". He addresses the Biblical day in his book. Although Mr. Finch believes in a sunrise to sunrise day, he certainly was open to the belief that the day was simply the period of Light, as he writes: "Strictly speaking, the Sabbath day was just that - the Sabbath day. It began at SUNRISE and ended at sunset. The idea that work was restricted for a 24 hour period MAY BE A LATER ASSUMPTION. For instance, it is stated by Rabbi Juda ben Bathyra: "(From the wording of the commandment, 'observe) the (Sabbath) day', it follows that it APPLIES TO THE DAY ONLY. Whence therefore (do we include) THE NIGHT? This is taught by (the additional phrase) 'to keep it holy.' Why does it say THE DAY?' Because the Day commands more respect than the Night" (Mechilta of Rabbi Simeon ben Yohai, xx, 8, ed. Epstein, (Jerusalem, 1955)..."

Here is some other very interesting information that Mr. Finch provided: "...It is also interesting that according to the Karaite historian Al-QirqisanI (ca. 975 CE), the dissident Meswi al-Okbari (ca.850 CE) broke from traditional Rabbinical Judaism in an attempt to get back to the original religion and began the RECKONING OF THE DAY FROM SUNRISE. In the 12th Century, Benjamin of Tudela (1160-1173 CE) wrote concerning those who held to the original teaching of days beginning at Sunrise: "There (in Cyprus) are to be found both Rabbinical and Karaite Jews. And there are as well Jewish-Cypriote sectaries, who hold the law in contempt and are excommunicated by Israel (ites) everywhere. And they PROFANE THE EVE OF THE SABBATH and observe the night preceding Sunday" (The Itinerary of R. Benjamin of Tudela, ix, 5-8, ed. Gruhut-Adler, (1904), p. 23). Rabbi Ibn Ezra (1093-1167) CE) must have been aware of these sectaries, for he writes: "Many faithless people have been led astray on account of this verse (Ex. 16:25) and have said that we are ordered to keep the SABBATH DAY and the Night following it. For Moses said 'for TODAY IS A SABBATH unto the Lord,' and NOT THE NIGHT BEFORE IT" (A Short commentary on Exodus, (Vienna, 1926)...The medieval Jewish commentator Rabbi Samuel ben Meir (1100-1160 CE) explained the following concerning this verse (my note: Gen. 1:5): "It does Not say that it was Night time and it was Day time which made one day; but it says "it was Evening," which means that the period of the DAY TIME CAME TO AN END AND THE LIGHT DISAPPEARED. And when it says "it was Morning," it means that the period of the NIGHT TIME CAME TO AN END AND THE MORNING DAWNED. Then one whole day was completed." (Samuel ben Meir, Pirush ha-Torah, ed. by D. Rosin (Breslau, 1881), p. 5)..."There can be NO DOUBT that in pre-exilic times the Israelites reckoned the day from MORNING to morning. The DAY BEGAN WITH THE DAWN and closed with the end of the night following it..." (Jacob Zallel Lauterbach, Rabbinic Essays, (Cincinnati: Hebrew Union College Press, 1951), p. 446)...."In the Old Testament the EARLIER PRACTICE seems to have been to consider that the DAY BEGAN IN THE MORNING. In Gen. 19:34, for example, the "morrow" (ASV) or "Next Day" (RSV) CLEARLY BEGINS WITH THE MORNING AFTER THE PRECEDING NIGHT" (Jack Finegan, The Handbook of Biblical Chronology, p. 7-8).

(23) Concerning Genesis 1:5 Thomas Aquinas wrote: "The reason for mentioning the evening first is that as the evening ends the DAY, WHICH BEGINS WITH THE LIGHT, the termination of the Light at evening precedes the termination of the Darkness, which ends with the Morning" ('Summa I,' p. 377). (Notice the wide variety of commentators who may Not agree on many points of doctrine, but do agree that the Biblical day begins at First Light in the Morning.)

(24) "The Jewish Day (My note: Comment on John 11:9), was from SUNRISE to sunset, and was divided into 12 Hours...The CIVIL day was reckoned from sunset to sunset, and hence Jewish Sabbaths and feasts began with the setting of the sun..." (The New Testament --Translated from the Latin Vulgate, p. 277, 746).

(25) Another author commenting on John 11:9, explains that while the Jews reckoned the day from evening to evening, "The word "Day" was, however, used in another sense also, as with us, to denote that portion of the twenty-four hours during which the SUN SHONE..." (Bible Manners and Customs, p. 429).

(26) "The Israelites' lack of precision in reckoning time seems to have extended even to the definition of a Day. The COMMON ONE was certainly the working day from DAWN to sunset, but PERHAPS even before the EXILE, a Day was THOUGHT of as extending from sunset to sunset, as it was in New Testament TIMES." (Everyday Life in Old Testament Times, p. 189).

(27) "The FIRST Biblical allusion to time is the Genesis account of God's SEPARATION of Light and Darkness (1:5), and His creation of "the GREATER LIGHT" (the Sun) to RULE THE DAY, and the "lesser light" (the moon) to RULE THE NIGHT, with "the stars also" (v v. 14-16)....Men became aware of SEASONS when they began to farm. "While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and DAY and NIGHT shall not cease." (Gen. 8:22). (Harper's Bible Dictionary, p. 759).

(28) "Light and Darkness are NATURAL phenomena, associated with DAY and NIGHT...Darkness in the OT.-- God acted at creation to SEPARATE (make a distinction between) Darkness and Light, NIGHT and DAY (Ge. 1:4, 5, 18). In the OT, Darkness is theologically associated with a number of different things.

a. Judgment and distress. Ex. 10:21 portrays the plague of Darkness falling on the terrified Egyptians. Images of Darkness are associated with God's displeasure (e.g., 1 Sa. 2:9, Ps. 91:6). Darkness is especially associated with the Great Tribulation, the time of world judgment to come at history's end (Joel 2:2, 31; Am. 4:13; 5:18, 20; Zep. 1:15)...Light in the OT.-- God set the Sun in the sky to "give LIGHT on the earth" (Ge. 1:15). He accompanied Israel through the wilderness in a fiery pillar "to give them light" (13:21). These historic acts provide images that are picked up and expanded by the psalmists. God is called "my Light and my salvation" (Ps. 27:1). It is only in relationship with the Lord that one's life is illumined, for 'in (his) Light we see Light" (Ps. 36:9). Light is linked with divine revelation (Ps. 43:3; 119:130), with life (Ps. 49:19; 56:13), with salvation (Ps. 27:1), and with God's presence (Ps. 89:15; 90:8). God's people are called to "walk in the Light of the Lord..." (Isa. 2:5). (Expository Dictionary of Bible Words, p. 413). Light and Darkness are always different, whether the words are used literally or figuratively (Under the above heading 'Scriptures' see # (7).)

(29) The word "NIGHT" as found in Genesis 1:5 (Strongs 3915) is defined as:

leyl {lale} also laylah {lah'- yel-aw}

Hebrew: noun masculine

Possible Definitions:

1) night

1a) NIGHT (AS OPPOSED TO DAY) (My note: Night is Not defined as a 24 hour period)

1b) of gloom, protective shadow (figurative)

(30) The word "DARKNESS" as found in Genesis 1:5 (Strongs 2822) is defined as:

choshek {kho-shek'}

Hebrew: noun masculine

Possible Definitions:

1) darkness, obscurity (my note: Darkness is Not defined as a 24 hour period)

1a) darkness

1b) secret place .

(31) The word "DAY" as found in Genesis 1:5 (3117) is defined as:

yowm {yome}

Hebrew: noun masculine

Possible Definitions:

1) day, time, year

1a) DAY (AS OPPOSED TO NIGHT) (my note: Biblical)

1b) day (24 hour period)

1) AS DEFINED BY EVENING AND MORNING (my note: Not Biblical: Day and Night = 24 hours.

(God considers Evening and Morning part of the

Day (Light). This is the power of human


2) as a division of time

a) a working day, a day's journey

1c) days, lifetime (plural)

1d) time, period (general)

1e) year

1f) temporal references

1) today

2) yesterday

3) tomorrow

Note on the word "Day"-- (from an unused root meaning to be hot;) (See number (18) above).

(32) "The hours of daylight were divided into twelve, and this division was more generally used, as is shown by Jesus' observation "Are there not TWELVE HOURS IN THE DAY? (John 11:9)...The first three of these periods are referred to by Jesus in his story of the labourers in the vineyard (Matt. 20:1-16); the reference to "the eleventh hour" in verses 6 and 9 does not mean sixty minutes before the twelfth hour, but a moment which was nearer to 6 p.m. than to 3 p.m. It is clear also from this that the labourers' working day covered the WHOLE PERIOD OF DAYLIGHT, for they began work "early in the Morning" and finished "when Even was come" (verses 1 and 8). (The Bible Companion, p. 311-312). Commenting on verse 8 of this same parable, another author writes: "Jewish law mandated that laborers be PAID THE SAME DAY, because the wages were often little more than sufficient for a Day's needs (Deut. 24:14-15)". (The IVP Bible Background Commentary - New Testament, p. 99). Notice in verse 8, when "EVEN WAS COME", the "Labourers" were called and PAID IN THE EVENING (LIGHT). So EVENING was still a part the SAME 12 HOUR DAY that began "Early in the Morning" as pointed out by 'The Bible Companion', and confirmed by 'The IVP Bible Background Commentary', when they state that the laborers had to be "PAID THE SAME DAY". This author also states that the "work began around Sunrise", and "the time of day was necessarily reckoned from Sunrise". (p. 98-99). The 'New Bible Dictionary' adds the following information concerning the hours of the day: "All three are mentioned in the parable of the labourers in the vineyard (Mt. 20:3,5), as also the ELEVENTH HOUR (v v. 6, 9), which has become proverbial for THE LAST OPPORTUNITY." (P. 496).

(33) "God commanded the light to shine out of darkness,"...It says then that "God called the Light Day" (thus PLAINLY DEFINING what is meant by the word "Day" when it is used in this chapter). This ended the work of the first day; "Evening" came, then a period of Darkness and then "Morning," when ANOTHER DAY BEGAN..." Speaking of the word "Day" this author continues; "...that is as the PERIOD OF LIGHT experienced diurnally as the earth rotates on its axis each 24 hours. It is so defined in verse 5, the FIRST TIME IT IS USED, where we are told that "God called the Light Day." (The Beginning of The World, p. 24-25).

(34) The following examples are from writers who believe that the Sabbath day and day in general begin at sunset and end on the following sunset. As they attempt to bring their readers to this conclusion, they say some very interesting things. And because of the power of tradition, they may not even realize what they just said; "And God divided the Light from the Darkness." When the Light shone upon one side of the Earth, then the terrestrial ball itself, being opaque, intercepted the luminous rays, so that the opposite side of the globe was in Darkness. This Darkness was due to Lack of Illumination...While the Sun appears to set, and Nightfall takes place, along that dividing line on one side of the Earth, on the other side of the globe the Sun appears to Rise, and DAYBREAK occurs, along that dividing line..."And God called the LIGHT DAY, and the Darkness He called NIGHT." This is the FIRST USE OF THE TERM "DAY" in the Bible, and its meaning corresponds exactly to the FIRST dictionary definition we have given, signifying "the TIME OF LIGHT, or the interval between one Night and the Next; the time between Sunrise and Sunset." (The Lord's Day on a Round World, p. 34-35).

"...Another false idea is that we only celebrate the holy time during the daylight, from Sunrise to Sunset...The words used are inspired by the Holy Spirit. How has YHWH used them?...The word "Light" is (216) "owr" meaning LUMINARY OR ILLUMINATION IN EVERY SENSE. It means "Bright, Clear, Day, MORNING, SUN." The root is (215) "owr" meaning to be or to make Luminous, enlighten, Give Light" and can even mean the "BREAK OF DAY."...The word "Day" is (3117) "yowm" or "yom" from an unused root meaning to be HOT, referring to the WARM HOURS. "The primary signification appears to...be that of the HEAT OF THE DAY...OPPOSITE TO NIGHT." It usually refers, depending on context, to BROAD DAYLIGHT IN CONTRAST TO NIGHT OR DARKNESS...The word "Morning" is (1242) "boqer" meaning "DAWN" as the BREAK OF DAY or DAYBREAK..." (When to Observe The Sabbath--Light of Truth Magazine, May 1995 issue, p. 19-20).

This last example is a poem written by a 19th century Seventh-day Baptist (I can only assume that he believed in a Sunset to Sunset day. If he did Not, this poem becomes even more interesting. (See number (1) above under quotes).

The Sabbath on a Round World (by William Stillman):

And now to trace you round this rolling world,

An eastern and a western route you've twirled.

And made out nothing by the spacious travel.

But what I call a wretched, foolish cavil.

And now to make you clearly understand

That Sabbath day may be in every land,

At least those parts where mortal men reside

(And nowhere else can precepts be applied).

There was a place where first the orb of light

Appeared to rise, and westward took its flight;

That moment, in that place the day began,

And as he in his circuit westward ran,

Or rather, as the Earth did eastward spin,

To parts more westward daylight did begin.

And thus at different times, from place to place,

The day began--this clearly was the case.

And I should think a man be a dunce

To think that day began all round at once,

So that in foreign lands it doth appear,

There was a first day there as well as here.

And if there was a first, the Earth around,

As sure as fates the Seventh can be found.

And thus you see it matters not a whit,

On which meridian of Earth we get,

Since each distinctly had its dawn of light,

And ever since, successive day and night;

Thus while our antipodes in darkness sleep,

We here the true, primeval Sabbath keep. (The Lord's Day on A Round World, p. 6)

(35) With all of the above in mind, let us look at a scripture that should make more sense than it ever has before. Some people have argued that Nehemiah 13:19 is proof that the Sabbath begins at Sunset on Friday. Following is one of many examples that you may find:

"This explains why the Sabbath is described in these words, "It shall be unto you a sabbath of rest, ...from even unto even, shall ye celebrate your sabbath." Leviticus 23:32. But when does the evening begin according to the Bible? "And at even, when the sun did set, they brought unto him all that were diseased, and them that were possessed with devils." Mark 1:32. Since the Pharisees taught that it was wrong to heal on the Sabbath, the people waited till the Sabbath (Mark 1:21) was over before bringing their sick to Jesus. So they brought them "at even, when the sun did set."

In Nehemiah 13:19 we are given another description of the beginning of Sabbath. This definitely places the first moments of the Sabbath at sunset, when it is beginning to be dark. This tells us therefore, that the Sabbath begins on Friday evening when the sun goes down."

Does Nehemiah 13:19 really tell us that the Sabbath begins "on Friday Evening when the sun goes down"? What does the verse say?

"And it came to pass, that when the gates of Jerusalem began to be dark BEFORE the sabbath, I commanded that the gates should be shut, and charged that they should not be opened till after the sabbath: and some of my servants set I at the gates, that there should no burden be brought in on the sabbath day."

The important thing to notice in this verse is that the Gates BEGAN TO BE DARK BEFORE THE SABBATH.  In fact the Sabbath day never begins in this verse. If the Sabbath begins at Sunset, how is it that this period of time between Sunset and Dark is said to be BEFORE THE SABBATH. The answer is simple. The Sabbath does NOT Begin on Friday at Sunset. It Begins at Dawn on Saturday Morning. Translation after Translation places the period of time in this verse between Sunset and Dark and BEFORE THE SABBATH:

"...the gates of Jerusalem BEGAN TO BE DARK BEFORE THE SABBATH..." (The American Standard Version).

"...the gates of Jerusalem HAVE BEEN DARK BEFORE THE SABBATH..." (Young's Literal Translation).

"...it BEGAN TO BE DARK in the gates of Jerusalem BEFORE THE SABBATH..." (Darby Translation).

"...it BEGAN TO BE DARK at the gates of Jerusalem BEFORE THE SABBATH..." (Revised Standard Version).

"...I ordered that the doors be SHUT AT SUNSET BEFORE THE SABBATH..." (New Century Version).

"...the gates of Jerusalem BEGAN TO BE DARK BEFORE THE SABBATH..." (Webster's Bible Translation).

"...When EVENING SHADOWS FELL on the gates of Jerusalem BEFORE THE SABBATH..." (New International Version).

"...the gates of Yerushalayim BEGAN TO BE DARK BEFORE THE SHABBAT..." (Hebrew Names Version of World English Bible).

"...the gates of Jerusalem BEGAN TO BE DARK BEFORE THE SABBATH..." (Third Millennium Bible).

"...the gates of Jerusalem, as it BEGAN TO BE DARK BEFORE THE SABBATH..." (New King James Version).

"...just as it GREW DARK at the gates if Jerusalem BEFORE THE SABBATH..." (New American Standard Bible).

"...the gates of the city should be shut as DARKNESS FELL EVERY FRIDAY EVENING (Note: Hebrew on the DAY BEFORE THE SABBATH)..." (The New Living Translation).

(36) Although the author of an article (p. 16 -17) in the December 1958 issue of 'The Plain Truth ' magazine states that a natural day is 24 hours in length, he writes: "Another Bible meaning of the word day as a 12-hour period is also in common usage today. When it speaks of the three days and three nights Jonah was in the great fish's belly or the three days and three nights Christ was in His grave, the word day refers to the DAYLIGHT PART OF THE 24-HOUR PERIOD. This "day" is by CHRIST'S OWN DEFINITION 12 HOURS. "Are there not 12 hours in the day?" John 11:9". It is very important to note that the author confirms the fact that the "three days" mentioned above have the identical meaning in both the Old and New Testaments, which is the "DAYLIGHT PART OF THE 24-HOUR PERIOD". This is the Biblical (natural) day mentioned all throughout the scriptures.

(37) In the April 1963 issue of 'The Good News' magazine we are told that when Israel came under the control of the Egyptians they began to follow many of their customs. The author writes, "The Egyptian day customarily commenced with sunrise (Wilkinson, Vol. II, p. 368). God's day however, begins at sunset (Lev. 23:32)...While the Egyptians allowed the Jews to retain their ancient calendar, there was a change made in the beginning of the day---it became common to begin the day at SUNRISE. This custom (my note: God's) was adopted, and PERSISTED AMONG THE JEWS EVEN DOWN TO NEW TESTAMENT TIMES (see The Jewish Quarterly Review, April 1946). We (God's ministry) have personal information from the Hebrew Union College admitting this fact..." (p.11-12). Earlier in this article the author says the Egyptians "...imposed their philosophies and religious beliefs upon the Jews in profusion. Dr. Lauterbach, one of Judaism's greatest historians, admits that this period was one of religious anarchy among the Jews of Palestine (Rabbinic Essays, p.200)." Interestingly, Dr. Lauterbach states in his book, mentioned above (Rabbinic Essays), that beginning the day at sunrise was the earlier mode of reckoning the day in the Bible (Read this under the heading --'The Day of Atonement---Sifting through the Traditions'-- above). He also states in this same book: "There can be no doubt that in pre-exilic times the Israelites reckoned the day from morning to morning. The day began with the DAWN...in regard to the Day of Atonement, where the Law wishes to make the fasting on it stricter than on any other fast day so as to include also the preceding night, the Law specifically states that it should begin with part of the preceding day and therefore expressly says: "And ye shall afflict your souls in the ninth day of the month at even, from even to even shall ye keep your Sabbath." This indirectly but unmistakably points to a mode of reckoning the day from morning to morning. In post-exilic times, however, probably not later than the beginning of the Greek period, a change in the system of reckoning the day was made, and the day was reckoned as extending from the preceding to the following evening. As might be expected, such a radical innovation was not immediately generally accepted. It took some time before it entirely supplanted the older system." (p. 437 - 470).

A fascinating point that the author of 'the Good News' magazine article makes, is that many Jews have been reckoning their day as beginning at Sunrise from the time they were under Egyptian control and that this custom has persisted among them "EVEN DOWN TO NEW TESTAMENT TIMES".

(38) Speaking of Genesis 1:5, this author writes, "The evening and the morning were the first day" has given the impression of a day consisting of two parts, the first described as evening the second as morning" The author says that "morning" is better translated as "...DAYBREAK, not a period of morning, and the translation is corrected in the R.V. The literal Hebrew runs: "There was evening and there was DAYBREAK one day...Another O.T. passage often referred to is Lev. 23:32 "From evening unto evening shall ye keep your Sabbath", it is sometimes IGNORED that this has NOTHING TO DO WITH THE WEEKLY SABBATH, but is concerned with the VERY SPECIAL ceremonies and restrictions of the GREAT DAY OF ATONEMENT, Tisri 9-10. If it is lightly said, "no doubt the weekly Sabbath followed the same rule, " it must be remembered that the weekly Sabbath was a joyful festival, while the other was the most penitential occasion in the whole year - a day for a man to afflict his soul...So far the evidence, when NOT AMBIGUOUS, has turned out to be definitely in favor of a day beginning in the Morning..." (The Beginning of The Jewish Day, p. 393 - 401 --JQR).

(39) "In order to fix the beginning and ending of the Sabbath-day and festivals and to determine the precise hour for certain religious observances it becomes necessary to know the exact times of the rising and setting of the sun. According to the strict interpretation of the Mosaic law, every day begins with sunrise and ends with sunset...The Rabbis consider it doubtful whether twilight belongs to the day or to the night...consequently they treat it as a safeguard against encroachment upon either---for example, the twilight of Friday is reckoned as Sabbath eve, and that of Saturday as Sabbath day..." (Jewish Encyclopedia, p. 591-597).

(40) Definition -- "Day" --- "This common word has caused some trouble to plain readers, because they have not noticed that the word is used in several different senses in the English Bible, When different uses of the word are understood the difficulty of interpretation vanishes...It sometimes means the time from daylight till dark. This popular meaning is easily discovered by the context, e. g. Genesis 1:5, 8:22), etc." (International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Found under the word "Day")

(41) "In early Jewish practice,...it seems to have been customary to reckon the day from sunrise to sunrise, or, rather, from dawn to dawn. Thus the law for the "praise-offering" (lev. 7:17 (pt) specifies that this sacrifice must be eaten on the day upon which it is offered, and that nothing may be left until morning. The repetition of the law in Lev. 22:30... is even more explicit: "On that very day (when it was sacrificed) it shall be eaten; ye shall not leave anything of it until morning. Clearly the next morning is here reckoned as belonging to the next day, and not the same day as the preceding evening and night. In other words, the day is reckoned here from sunrise to sunrise...Likewise in Exod. 16:19f...the manna was given to the people in the morning, just at dawn and before the sun had become warm (16:21). It was to be eaten only on the day upon which it was gathered; nothing was to remain over until the next morning; that which did so became foul. Here, too, the day seems to have been reckoned from dawn to dawn...From Matt. 28:1 It may be inferred that the practice of reckoning the day from sunset to sunset was not universal in Israel, but in certain circles the older practice continued for several centuries...It is manifest that the day is still reckoned here from dawn to dawn. This is also the implication of the parallel passage, Mark 16:1f...Luke 23:56b-24:1 seems to imply the same...Finally, it is significant that in the second Temple, throughout its entire existence, the practice seems to have been in all ritual matters to reckon the day from dawn to dawn, and not according to the later practice, from sunset to sunset...even the rabbis, who, themselves, reckoned the day from sunset to sunset, and refused to admit the legitimacy of any other practice, or rather, absolutely ignored all divergent practice, none the less had to admit the validity of the interpretation of Lev. 7:15...the day was at one time reckoned from sunrise to sunrise...The earlier practice, which continued until the time of the secondary strata of the Priestly code, was to reckon the day from dawn to dawn...The later practice was to reckon the day from sunset to sunset...It is impossible to tell exactly when this change in the mode of reckoning the day took place in Israel, and what causes brought it about. Possibly it may have had something to do with the introduction of the lunar calendar instead of the solar, for the lunar calendar naturally presupposes a reckoning of the day from nightfall to nightfall...It was probably coincident with the revision of the festival calendar, which took place in the period after the time of Ezra, and was, in all probability, the work of the soferim or of the Great Synod in the fourth century B.C. This may also be inferred from the statement in the Talmud (Berachoth 33a) that the men of the Great Synod instituted the ceremonies of Kiddush and Havdalah, the solemn sanctification of the Sabbath on Friday eve, and its equally solemn ushering out on Saturday eve, in other words, ceremonies specifically marking the beginning and close of the Sabbath as at sunset. These were ceremonies for the Jewish home instead of the Temple. This, coupled with the fact that in the second Temple the old system of reckoning the day from dawn to dawn continued to be observed, as we have seen, may perhaps indicate that this entire innovation was the work of an anti-priestly group or party in the Great Synod..." (The Sources of the Creation Story - Gen. 1:1- 2:4, p. 169-212).

(42) "A new stage in the investigation of the problem of the calendar of ancient Israel was marked by the appearance of a learned article by E. Koenig in 1906...He maintains that two distinct calendars were current in ancient Israel. The first, a solar calendar...This solar calendar was well adapted to the conditions of the simple, agricultural life which the Israelites lived during the first period of their sojourn in Palestine. It reckoned the day from sunrise...

The second calendar was a luni-solar year...The day now came quite naturally to be reckoned from sunset...This second calendar was obviously based upon Babylonian models and was adopted under direct Babylonian influence at about 600 B.C., when Babylonian religion and general culture began to affect with steadily increasing force the Jewish exiles in Babylonia and, through those of them who return from exile, the Jews who had remained in Palestine.

This broadly sums up Koenig's conclusions..

...(1) the time of the transition from the reckoning of the day as beginning with morning to the reckoning of it as beginning with evening...

...that in the earlier calendar and in the literature which records this the day was reckoned from the morning, presumably from sunrise, while in the later calendar and the literature pertaining thereto the day was reckoned from the evening...must be eaten upon the day upon which it is sacrificed, and that nothing of it must be allowed to remain over until morning. Obviously the implication here is that the next morning is no longer a part of the day upon which the sacrifice was offered, but mark the beginning of the next day...

...Elsewhere we have presented quite a mass of evidence which establishes conclusively that the earlier practice in Israel during the biblical period was to reckon the day from sunrise to sunrise...

...That in the earliest period of Israelite sojourn in Palestine, under calendar 1, the day was reckoned from morning to morning is established by a superabundance of evidence...

...This in turn, together with other important considerations, would point to a time approximately about the beginning or the first half, of the third century B.C. as that of the introduction of the new system of reckoning the day." (Supplementary Studies in The Calendars of Ancient Israel, p. 1 - 148).

(43) "The solar hour now in use, which remains stable throughout the year, is a relatively modern innovation. Until the 18th century an hour was usually taken as the 12th part of the period between sunrise and sunset or between sunset and sunrise and varied with the seasons. Hours are divided into 60 equal minutes..." (Funk & Wagnalls New Encyclopedia, Volume 13, p. 234).

(44) "This legendary story is a commentary on the verse in Exodus 12:2, "This reckoning of the month shall be unto you." It describes God divesting Himself of the hallowing of new moons and transferring power over to the Israelite people.

"This reckoning of the month shall be unto you" (Exodus 12:2). Rabbi Joshua ben Levi said, "How can this matter be illustrated? By the parable of a king who had a clock. When his son reached puberty, he said to him, 'My son, until now the clock has been in my keeping. From now on, I turn it over to you.' Similarly, the Holy one used to hallow new moons and calculate leap years. But when Israel arose, God said to them, 'Until now I was in charge of the hallowing of new moons and of the New Year's Day. From now on, I turn this decision-making over to you' " (Tanchuma, Bo 12).

"...It is written, and they shall serve as signs for the seasons and the days and the years (Genesis 1:14). This refers to determining the beginning of the Sabbath by the setting of the sun and calculating the proper dates for festivals, for Rosh Hodesh, and for the new year.

Rabbi Yuden says in the name of Rabbi Tanchum the son of Hiyya and Rabbi Pinchas the son of Rabbi Simon, "If at first both the sun and the moon were called 'great lights,' why is the moon referred afterward as 'the small light'?"

Because the moon trespassed on the domain of the sun, appearing in the evening sky before the sun had set, its light was diminished.

...The Holy One, Blessed be He, said, "I was the One who caused the moon to trespass on the domain of the sun, and thus, to be diminished."

If God diminished the moon for trespassing with His permission, certainly it is a grave infraction to trespass without permission.

Rabbi Levi said in the name of Rabbi Yosi the son of Ila'i: "In the way of the world the older one should count according to the greater sign, and the younger one according to the lesser sign. And indeed, the gentile nations, who are descended from Esau, the older son of Isaac, calculate their calendar according to the sun, while the Jewish people who are descended from Jacob, the younger son of Isaac, calculate their calendar according to the moon."

Rabbi Nachman said, "This bodes well for the Jewish people. The fortunes of Esau, who calculates by the sun, can be deduced from the sun. Just as the sun rules only by day, never by night, so too does Esau have a share only in this world, not in the world to come. The fortunes of Jacob, who calculates by the moon, can be deduced from the moon. Just as the moon rules both day and by night, so too does Israel have a share both in this world and in the world to come" (Genesis, Rabbah 6:1). (Sacred Seasons, A Sourcebook for the Jewish Holidays, p. 21-22, 26-27).

The following information found within number (45) below, deals with the "Dead Sea Scrolls" and the Jewish sect the "Essenes" of the Qumran Community:

(45) "A highly ordered society (my note: the Essenes / Dead Sea Scrolls) as indicated by the scrolls, the Qumran covenanters had a council of twelve members (one for each tribe of Israel) and three priests. They required candidates to endure a three-year probationary period, held property in common, dressed in white, practiced table fellowship, and believed in predestination. These practices, as well as their utilization of a solar calendar (in contrast to the lunar calendar of the Pharisees and Sadducees), ensured their distinction from those they considered corrupt...The covenanters, the "sons of light," would accompany the angels in battle. Their enemies, the "sons of darkness," would eventually fall..." (The Oxford History of the Biblical World, p. 489).

(A) 4QMMT (my note: a Dead Sea Scroll writing) "begins with a section about the correct calendar (almost certainly a 364-day solar year), as in 1 Enoch and Jubilees...The second set of legal texts are calendrical in nature...highlighting certain dates (especially for Sabbaths and festivals) and periods. The Qumran community accepted a solar calendar of 364 days by which the festivals were dated; they also accepted a 354-day lunar calendar and synchronized it with the solar arrangement. In this respect it agreed with the Astronomical Book of Enoch but not with Jubilees, which rejects a lunar calendar...

"...It would not be accurate to claim that the data from the sectarian scrolls and from ancient descriptions of the Essenes coincide perfectly. For example, Josephus never mentions that the Essenes had their own special solar calendar of 364-days, while it is attested in an entire series of texts from the Qumran..." (An Introduction to Early Judaism, p. 155-156, 162).

Note: The leader of the early digs at Qumran was French scholar and archeologist Roland de Vaux. He was then named chief editor of these Judean desert texts. de Vaux writes, "In Israel, the DAY was for a LONG TIME RECKONED FROM MORNING to morning...and it was in fact in the Morning, with the CREATION OF LIGHT, that the world began..." See # (21) above, where de Vaux supplies additional information on the Biblical day from his book "Ancient Israel".

(B) "The calendar that underlies the dated festivals is likely the 364-day solar arrangement familiar from Jubilees, 1 Enoch and other Qumran texts...The first Psalms scroll from cave 11 says that King David composed "52 songs for the Sabbath offerings" (27,7). Thus, he wrote one for each Sabbath in a solar year. Another document, which has been called "The Angelic Liturgy" or "Songs of the Sabbath Sacrifice" (4QShirShabb), presents thirteen such poems, enough to cover one-fourth of a year. This text exists in eight copies from cave 4, one from cave 11, and one from Masada. The Sabbaths are dated in each case according to the 364-day calendar, which has been mentioned several times already..." (Dead Sea Scrolls Today, p. 59, 61, 214).

(C) Commenting on the Essenes in his book 'Sketches of Jewish Social Life,' Alfred Edersheim writes, "...They had community of goods; were bound to poverty, chastity, and obedience to their superiors...Their day began with sunrise, when they went to prayer..." (Chapter 15).

(D) The 'Jerusalem Post' of July 24, 1999, in an article titled "Keepers of The Scrolls" states, "...Unlike most Jews, the sectarians had a solar calendar of 364 days divided into 12 equal months each of 30 days...a lunar calendar was also used and ways were found to harmonize the two. Essential to all this was an instrument for determining the hours of the day as well as the seasons, and one such instrument, a stone sundial, is the most fascinating item among all the utensils and footwear on view...At Qumran, seasonal, not absolute, hours were employed. The length of an hour depended on the length of the day, which was divided into three watches, for a total of 12 hours...It appears that three marks equaled one seasonal hour, one-twelfth of daylight..."

The material found under number (46) below, addresses the writings found within "The Book of Jubilees", "The Book of Enoch" and other ancient works outside of the scriptures. These writings may help shed some light on the subject at hand and have been added for your information and consideration:

(46) "...Furthermore, the author protests vigorously against the change from the solar to a solar-lunar calendar...This proves that the Book of Jubilees was written at the time when the calendar was changed from solar to solar-lunar time, and some Jews opposed this innovation...and they will confound all the days, the holy with the unclean, and the unclean day with the holy; for they will go wrong as to the months and Sabbaths and feasts and Jubilees..." (The Book of Jubilees, p. 13-15)

(A) "...And command thou the children of Israel that they observe the years according to this reckoning - three hundred and sixty-four days, and (these) will constitute a complete year, and they will not disturb its time from its days and from its feasts; for everything will fall out in them according to their testimony, and they will not leave out any day nor disturb any feasts...For there will be those who will assuredly make observations of the moon - now (it) disturbeth the seasons and cometh in from year to year, ten days too soon...A lunar year consists of 354 days..." (The Book of Jubilees" or "The Little Genesis", p. 64-65).

(B) "Book of Enoch...Book 111, The Heavenly Luminaries (Chs. 72-82)...This astronomical treatise is concerned that time should be reckoned by the sun, not the moon...This insistence upon a solar year may have been in opposition to the Pharisaic use of the lunar calendar..." (The Interpreter's Dictionary of the Bible, p. 104-105).

(47) "...The month had thirty days, which means, again, that the calendar of the Bible was a solar one. In a solar calendar, the day could not have started from the evening, according to the current practice in the Jewish calendar, but from sunrise; and that is the meaning of the verse, "there was evening and there was morning, the first day," that is to say, from sunrise to sunrise constituted one day...This opinion was already expressed by a famous Rabbi in the twelfth century, the Rashbam...the meaning is not that the Jews had started the day with the evening, but that the law had ordained they should fast on the tenth day of the month and on the ninth thereof, so that the fast consisted of two half-parts of two consecutive days..." (Some Stages of the Jewish Calendar, p. 183-193).

(48) The Jewish Encyclopedia under "Eve of Holidays" mentions Ibn Ezra's poem on the Sabbath , "...in which he decries the custom of a certain sect which began the Sabbath and festivals with sunrise..." (p. 276).

In Abraham E. Millgram's book 'Sabbath - The Day of Delight,' he introduces us to a Medieval writer named Abraham Ibn Ezra who writes in his 'Introduction to a Sabbath Epistle' about a man (himself) who is dreaming and another man who appears before him and hands the man (Ezra) who is dreaming a letter from the Sabbath. It starts out, "...I am the Sabbath, the crown of the law of the chosen ones, the fourth among the Ten words. And between the Lord and his sons I am the perpetual sign of the covenant for all generations...I have preserved thee at all times because thou hast observed me from the days of youth. But in thine old age an unwitting transgression has been found in thee, for they have brought into thy house books... In which it is written to profane the Sabbath eve, and how canst thou be silent and not swear vows...To compose letters in the way of truth and send them to all sides?...And the messenger of the Sabbath answered and spoke to me..."She has been told that thy pupils brought yesterday to thy house books of commentaries on the law, and there is it written to profane the Sabbath eve..." The one who is dreaming (Ezra) is told to "...wage the battle of the law with the enemies of the Sabbath..." When he awakens, he brings the "...books into the light of the moon and there was written an explanation of Gen. 1. "And the evening and the morning," namely, that when the morning of the second day came then one whole day had passed, for the night is reckoned as part of the preceding day. Then I almost rent my garments, . . . and I took an oath not to give sleep to mine eyes after the conclusion of the holy day till I had written a lengthy letter to explain when was the beginning of the day according to the Law, to remove every stumbling block and to clear away snare and pitfall..." (p. 232-234).

Following are the notes on the above 12th century writing: "Abraham Ibn Ezra visited Cyprus prior to his arrival in London. It was probably there that he met a Jewish sect which celebrated the Sabbath from Saturday morning to Sunday morning instead of from Friday sunset to Saturday eve. This experience, as well as the appearance of some books defending this heterodox practice, induced Ibn Ezra to write the Sabbath Epistle...The book was probably the commentary of Rabbi Samuel ben Meir (Rashbam) on the Pentateuch..." (p. 490). (See # (22) and (47) above where this Rabbi is mentioned).-- This is just one more example showing that this belief of the Biblical day beginning in the morning is not just some new idea dreamed up by Sabbath keeping Christians. It is in fact a belief that is many centuries old and was adhered to by various Jewish sects throughout history.

(49) "The first evening was not the gloom, which possibly preceded the full burst of light as it came forth from the primary darkness, and intervened between the darkness and full broad daylight. It was not till after the light had been created, and the separation of the light from the darkness had taken place, that evening came, and after the evening the morning...It follows from this, that the days of creation are not reckoned from evening to evening, but from morning to morning..." (Commentary on the Old Testament, The First Book of Moses, p. 51).

(50) "There is a beautiful little parable in Rom. xiii. (my note: Rom 13:12) when the apostle, picturing the close of the night season and the near approach of the daybreak, urges all to awake out of sleep, to cast off the works of darkness, the apparel belonging to the night, and to clothe themselves for the day in the armour of light..." (The Study of the Types, p. 108).

(51) In this note on Genesis 1:5 the author writes: "...When day-time had passed, the period allotted to darkness returned...and when night-time came to an end, the light held sway a second time...and this completed the first calendar day...which had begun with the creation of light..."

...An examination of the narrative passages of the Bible makes it evident that whenever clear reference is made to the relationship between a given day and the next, it is precisely sunrise that is accounted the beginning of the second day...So, too, in Lev. xxiii 32, with regard to the Day of Atonement,...thus the evening before the tenth is called the ninth of the month.

It will thus be seen that throughout the Bible there obtains only one system of computing time: the day is considered to begin in the morning; but in regard to the festivals and appointed times, the Torah ordains that they shall be observed also on the night preceding day. This point is explicitly emphasized whenever a certain precept has to be observed particularly at night, like the eating of unleavened bread on the night of Passover and fasting on the evening of the Day of Atonement. In the case of the Sabbath and the other festival days, however, there was no need to stress that work was prohibited on the night preceding (my note: That is because work was not prohibited on the night preceding the weekly Sabbath and festivals), since agricultural tasks...are performed only by day..." (A Commentary on the Book of Genesis, Part 1, p. 28-29).

(52) "The Hebrew word yohm, translated "day," can mean different lengths of time..." The author then admits: "Many consider the word "day" used in Genesis chapter 1 to mean 24 hours. However, in Genesis 1:5 God himself is said to divide day into a smaller period of time, calling just the light portion "day."..." (Life-- How Did it Get Here?, p. 26).

(53) "The fact that evening is placed before morning throughout this chapter is not a foolproof indication that the OT reckons a day from sunset to sunset. There is some evidence that strongly suggests that the day was considered to begin in the morning at sunrise. For example, this view is supported by the fact that when the OT refers to a second day the time reference is the morning (Gen. 19:33-34; Judg. 6:38; 21:4)...Thus it seems likely that this refrain in Genesis refers not to the computation of a day but rather to the "vacant time till the morning, the end of a day and the beginning of the next day." (The Book of Genesis - Chapter 1-17, p. 118-121).

(54) "According to the Bible, even before He created the earth God said, "Let there be light," and there was light, which He divided from the darkness. "And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night." To ancient peoples the day began at sunrise and ended at sunset...but as people began to plant seeds an raise crops it became necessary for them to predict the coming of spring, summer, autumn and winter...A better way had to be found.

Looking again to the heavens for an answer, man noticed that the phases of the moon never changed and that there were about twenty-nine suns between one full moon and the next. Why not use the moon to measure time?...

...The ancient Babylonians used the moon as the basis for a calendar..." (The Mystery of Time, p. 14-15).

(55) "...There is some evidence that at one time the day was reckoned from sunrise to sunrise. But before the close of the biblical period, it had become standard to reckon the day from sunset to sunset, and this has been Jewish practice ever since...

...The language of verses 5 and 6 (my note: Lev. chapter 23) suggests when this sacrifice was performed was considered part of the fourteenth day and that the fifteenth - the Matzah festival - did not begin until the next morning...

...Here again is a suggestion that the new day began at daybreak rather than sundown..." (The Torah - A Modern Commentary, p. 920-930).

(56) "...In Jamnia it was the duty of the Nassi to preach on every Sabbath...At the beginning of the second century we hear of sermons delivered on Friday night..." (The Observance of the Sabbath and the Festivals in the First Two Centuries of the Current Era According to Philo, Josephus, the New Testament, and the Rabbinic Sources, p. 433-532).

Note of interest: "With the exception of Simchat Torah, Jewish law and tradition oppose holding public Torah readings at night. Nonetheless, in Reform Practice the Torah is usually read on Friday nights, and some Conservative and Reconstructionist congregations do likewise...

Although neither the Talmud nor the codes discuss this question directly, it is likely that the Torah was not read at night owing to poor lighting conditions...

With the introduction of electricity, the problem no longer existed. Nevertheless, traditionalists insist that since the time to read the Torah had always been during daylight hours, no change in practice should be made." (This is the Torah, p. 128-129).

(57) "The determining of midnight is still of practical importance to many Catholics even though the Eucharistic fast no longer begins at midnight. There still remains Friday abstinence, which is computed from midnight to midnight...

The law (my note: Canon Law) defines the length of the various time units in common use. In the course of time these units have varied in length. Thus, day was once opposed to night and lasted about 12 hours. Now the day is made up of 24 hours reckoned continuously from midnight to midnight. Thus the day, as opposed to the other units, is indivisible." (The New Catholic Encyclopedia, Vol. 14, p. 163).

(58) In the Jamieson, Fausset and Brown 'Commentary on the Whole Bible', the statement is made, that Moses in Genesis 1:5 "reckons according to Oriental usage, from sunset to sunset..." Just prior to saying this, the authors apparently unknowingly do allow the truth to come to the surface when they state: "But by the command of God, light was rendered visible; the thick murky clouds were dispersed, broken, or rarefied, and light diffused over the expanse of waters. The effect is described in the name "day," which in Hebrew signifies "warmth," "heat"; while the name "night" signifies a "rolling up," as night wraps all things in a shady mantle." (p. 17).

It should be very clear by now that Moses did not reckon days according to Jewish tradition. In fact, Moses gives us some of the very best examples of reckoning the start of day as beginning with the first light of morning throughout the first five books of the Bible. (Under the heading "Scriptures" above, go to # (10) and then to # (5) below and read from the translation 'The Five Books of Moses' for some examples).

(59) "The meaning of 'day'...A related problem is how to interpret the phrase 'evening and morning'. It is possible that we do not know what the writer meant. Among suggestions offered are the following: It refers to the Jewish system of reckoning the day from sunset to sunset, that is from evening via morning, to the next evening, or evening marks the completion of a period whose terminus a quo was the morning which dawned with the creation of light, while the 'morning' that follows marks the beginning of the new day and the end of the night section of the old day. these views suggest that the meaning is not clear." (New Bible Dictionary, p. 246-247).

"The precise order in which the phrase, "the evening and the morning appears...no more demonstrates that a new day commences with evening than the precise order of the phrase "the morning and the evening", demonstrates that a new day commences with morning." (When Does the Sabbath Begin? Morning or Evening? -- Appendix, "Does the Sabbath Begin at Nooon?-- 'Refutation of Argument #1').

We certainly should not stake out a position based on the words 'evening and morning' alone. The key as stated from the beginning of this effort is to search all of the scriptures with an open mind and if we do, a meaning much closer to the second view listed under # (59) above should become much clearer.

(60) The following definitions of New Testament words can be found in 'Vine's Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words':

(A) "Dawn...orthros..."daybreak," denotes "at early dawn," Luke 24:1 (RV), "early in the morning" (KJV), and John 8:2 (KJV and RV); in Acts 5:21, RV, "about daybreak," for KJV, "early in the morning." (p, 146).

(B) "Break of day" (my note: listed under "Day")...auge..."brightness, bright, shining, as of the sun"; hence, "the beginning of daylight," is translated "break of day" in Acts 20:11." (p, 147). (See "What About New Testament Commentators?" above).

(C) "Noon...mesembria...lit., "middle-day" (mesos, "middle," and hemera, "a day")...Acts 22:6..." (p, 434).

If a day began at sunset and was 24 hours long, "Noon" would not be the "middle-day". Early morning would be the middle of the day.

(D) "Time...'et...In its first biblical appearance for example, 'et represents the "time" (period of the day) when the sun is setting:  "And the dove came in to him in the evening (Literally, time of the evening)..." (Gen. 8:11)..."

The dove comes in "Literally" at the "time of the evening".  Vine's does not say that the dove came in Literally at the "end of the day" or the "beginning of a new day".  It simply arrives "when the sun is setting", which is prior to the end of the day.  The day ends with darkness. (Psalm 104:20).

(61) "When the light was removed by the appearance of darkness, it was evening (my note: night), and the coming of light brought morning, the completion of a day. The days therefore, are to be reckoned from morning to morning..." (Studies in Genesis One, p. 89).

(62) "When does the Sabbath begin?...

There is some diversity in the Christian world respecting the time, at which the Sabbath (my note: Sunday observer) begins. Some date it from sunset on Saturday till sunset on Sabbath (my note: Sunday). When asked for their authority, they refer to a phrase which occurs several times in the first chapter of Genesis: "And the evening and the morning were the first day." This has not been considered sufficient proof by the great mass of the Christian world. Nor ought it to be, as all the world knows that no day of creation began in the evening; but all of them began in the morning. That saying of Moses therefore only declares that the day was made up of two parts, the after part, and the fore part. Indeed the evidence in the New Testament seems to be clearly against this view...In the New Testament, the evening following, and not going before this first day of the week, is called the evening of the first day, John 20:19..." (The Law of God, as Contained in the Ten Commandments, Explained and Enforced, pp. 309-310).

The above information was written by a Southern Presbyterian minister in 1864 (Presbyterian Board Publication) to other Sunday observers who followed the sunset to sunset tradition. Many commentators who do not observe the Sabbath day, correctly understand that a Biblical day begins in the morning:

A seventeenth century Sunday Observer writes the following:

"Q. 7. Doth not the Scriptures require us to begin the Sabbath in the evening, when it is said, "The evening and the morning were the first day" (Gen. 1:5); and, "From even unto even shall ye celebrate your Sabbath?" Lev. 33:32.

A. 1. It doth not follow that the evening of the first day was before the morning, though it be first spoken of; no more than that Shem and Ham were elder than Japheth, because they are reckoned up in order before him. "The sons of Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth (Gen. 10:1); and yet Japheth is called the elder brother. ” Verse 21. But Moses, reckoning up the works of God on the first day, retires back from the evening to the morning, and saith, they both make up the first day. Surely in the account of all nations, and in Scripture account too, the morning is before the evening. "The same day at evening, being the first day of the week, came Jesus,"... (John 20:10), where the evening following this day... is called the evening of the same day. 2. That place in Leviticus, concerning the celebration of the Sabbath from evening to evening, hath a reference only unto a ceremonial Sabbath, or day of atonement, on the tenth day of the seventh month, wherein the Israelites were to afflict their souls; but it hath not a reference unto the weekly Sabbath.

Q. 8. How do you prove by the Scripture that the weekly Sabbath doth begin in the morning?

A. That the weekly Sabbath is to begin in the morning, is evident” 1. by Exod. 16:23: "This is that which the Lord hath said, to-morrow is the rest of the holy Sabbath unto the Lord." If the Sabbath had begun in the evening, Moses would have said, This evening doth begin the rest of the Sabbath; but he saith, To-morrow is the rest of the Sabbath. 2. Most evidently it doth appear that the Sabbath doth begin in the morning, and not in the evening, by Matt. 28:1: "In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn towards the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary, to see the sepulchre."... the first day, which isthe Christian Sabbath, did begin towards the dawning, as it grew on towards light, and not as it grew on towards darkness; therefore the Christian Sabbath doth begin in the morning." (The Shorter Catechism of the Westminster Assembly Explained and Proved from Scripture by Thomas Vincent, written (seventeenth century). ---Note: The above understanding is based on a Sunday Sabbath and 24 hour days-- 

(63) "The verse (my note: Gen. 1:5), however, presents not an addition of items but the conclusion of a progression...then the creation of light, the approval of light, the separation of day and night. Now with evening the divine activities ceased: They are works of light not works of darkness. The evening ('erebh), of course, merges into night, and the night terminates with morning. But by the time morning is reached, the first day is concluded, as the account says succinctly, 'the first day,' and everything is in readiness for the second day's task. For 'evening' marks the conclusion of the day, and morning marks the conclusion of the night. It is these conclusions, which terminate the preceding, that are to be made prominent." (Exposition of Genesis, Vol. 1 pp. 57-58).

(64) "Among the ancients the day was reckoned in a great variety of ways...'From dawn to dark'...was the ancient and ordinary meaning of a day among the Israelites; night, as being the time ' when no man can work ' (Jn. 9:4)....

...The Israelites regarded the morning as the beginning of the day; in the evening the day declined 'or' went down,' and until the new day ('morning')...it was necessary to 'tarry all night' (cp Judg. 19:6-9)...Nu. 11:32 'all that day and all the night and all the next day'). Not till post-exilic times do we find traces of a new mode of reckoning which makes day begin at sunset and continue till the sunset following...

...Thus it was in the nature of things that morning,...midday,...and evening...should be distinguished, and equally so that morning should be spoken of as the rising of the morning, the breaking of the day (Gen. 19:15)...or the rising of the sun (Gen. 19:23)..." (Encyclopedia Biblica, pp. 1035-1036).

(65) "The concept of a legal or civil day, the period between two successive sun risings, goes back to the creation story (Gen. 1:14, 19) and is found throughout the Bible." (The Zondervan Pictorial Encyclopedia of the Bible, Volume 2, --found under "Day").

(66) "The observance of the day before the Sabbath and before other special days is not mentioned in the written law and shows the development of the oral law of which the Pharisees were such strong proponents". (The Interpreter's One-Volume Commentary on the Bible, p. 539).

(67) Gen. 1:4-5 -- "The most obvious sign of order is the gift of light and its daily separation from the darkness. God's lordship is expressed further in his naming of his works. The one day seems to be reckoned from morning to morning; i.e. God works all day till evening and begins his work again the next morning." (The Interpreter's One-Volume Commentary on the Bible, p. 3).

(68) "Day...(a) The time of daylight from sunrise to sunset, as contrasted to Night (Gen. 1:5; 8:22; Acts 20:31; etc). The day in this sense was divided into morning, noon and evening (cf. Ps. 55:17). Usual designations of periods in the day were sunrise, the heat of the day, the cool of the day, sunset, etc. In the NT the day as the period of light...becomes symbolic of salvation and righteousness (John 11:9; Rom. 13: 12-13). In 1 Thess. 5:5, 8 Christians are called sons of the day, and in 2 Pet. 1:19 faith is likened to the coming of the day. Apocalyptic writings such as Rev. 21:25 envisage perpetual day (my note: perpetual light, because there is no night) in the state of perfection...

(b) The civil day, a space of twenty-four hours, extending from sunrise to sunrise or from sunset to sunset...It would appear that the early Hebrews reckoned the civil day from one dawn to the next, as would naturally follow from its simplest meaning...cf. Num. 11:32; Judg. 19:5-9...Gradually however, they began to count from sunset to sunset, in accordance with the rising importance of their lunar festivals..." (The Interpreter's Dictionary of the Bible, p. 783).

(69) Revelation 21:22-25 and Revelation 22:3-5 (New Jerusalem):

(A) Revelation 22:5 "...And there shall be no night there...

This is repeated from (Revelation 21:25)...it will be one everlasting day, (hmera aiwnow), "day of eternity", or "eternal day", as in (2 Peter 3:18)..." (John Gill's Exposition of the Bible **).

"...To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity..." (2 Peter 3:18 - NASB).

(B) Revelation 21:23-25 "... (Isaiah 60:19, 20) The direct light of God and the Lamb shall make the saints independent of God's creatures, the sun and the moon..." (Jameson Faucet Brown **).

(C) Revelation 22:5 "...Thus ends the doctrine of this Revelation, in the everlasting happiness of all the faithful. The mysterious ways of Providence are cleared up, and all things issue in an eternal Sabbath, an everlasting state of perfect peace and happiness reserved for all who endure to the end." (notes of John Wesley **). (** Crosswalk.com - source for material listed under # (69) -- (See # (68 A) under "Quotes" and # (8) under "Scriptures" in the table of contents).

(70) "Acts 4:3 speaks of Peter and John being arrested and put "in custody until the morrow (my note: KJV = "next day"), for it was already evening (my note: not tomorrow)." ... the night belongs to the preceding day, suggesting that the day began and ended at daybreak." (The Time of the Crucifixion and the Resurrection, Chapter 5).

Thayer/Strong state that the words translated "next day" (KJV) - Strong's 839 -(Acts 4:3) means "...1) Tomorrow...from a derivative of the same as G109 (meaning a breeze, i.e. the morning air). while the KJV and J.B. Phillips use the words "next day", Moffatt and Charles B. Williams use the words "next morning". In verse 5, Williams uses the words "next day", Moffatt uses "Next morning" and the KJV uses the word "morrow" (same Greek word as "next day" in verse 3).-- ("Morning" and the beginning of the "Next day" go hand inhand.)

Acts 4:3, 5, 7 from the KJV reads:

"And they laid hands on them (my note: Peter & John), and put them in hold unto the next day; for it was now eventide. (v:3)

And it came to pass on the morrow... (v:5)

...when they had set them (my note: Peter & John) in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name, have ye done this?" (v:7)

(71) The first part of Matthew 28:1 reads, "In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week..."

Commenting on the above verse, this author takes issue with those who conclude that "...the dawning of the first day is interpreted as being the beginning of dusk (evening) rather than of dawn (morning). The reasoning runs as follows: "Sincethe Sabbath day ended at sunset, it would be impossible for 'dawn' to mean morning here, for the sun would not rise until some 12 hours later. It could not be in the end of the Sabbath and morning at the same time...

He continues:

...the end of the Sabbath at sunset does not mark the dawning of the first day, since the two events are about 12 hours apart...

The above interpretation, though ingenious, cannot be accepted for at least two reasons. First, because the verb "to dawn" (epiphosko) literally means not "to become dusk" but "to grow light," "to dawn." Second, because a figurative interpretation (i.e. to become dusk) in this instance runs against the explicit statements of the other Gospels which tell us that the women came to the empty tomb at daybreak "when the sun had risen"...

A first solution (my note: to the apparent contradiction) is suggested by the broader meaning of the adverb "opse" which is translated in the KJV as "in the end of" but in the RSV and most modern translations as "after". The two translations reflect the dual meanings of the term, namely "late" or "after." (Chapter 4).

(See note on author listed under "Quotes" # (4) above).

This same author continues: "The day appears to begin at sunrise also in Mark 16:2 which says: "And very early on the first day of the week they (the two Marys) went to the tomb when the sun had risen." According to the sunset reckoning the "very early" part of the first day of the week would be the hours immediately following the end of the Sabbath at sunset--what we would call Saturday night. Mark however, takes pains to explain what he means be "very early on the first day of the week," namely, not the early hours of the night immediately following the close of the Sabbath at sunset, but "when the sun had risen."...

...Mark saw the need to clarify what he meant by "very early on the first day of the week," namely, "when the sun had risen." This time reference presupposes a sunrise reckoning because according to the sunset reckoning, by the time the sun had risen it was the middle and not the early part of the first day." (Chapter 5).

"In 1 Samuel 19:11...Michal warns her husband David, after Saul's messengers surrounded their house, saying: "If you do not save your life tonight, tomorrow you will be killed" (cf. 1 Sam 28:8, 19, 25). The fact that at night Michal referred to the next morning as "tomorrow" clearly suggests that the new day began in the morning." (Chapter 5).

"In the story of the Levite of Ephraim we are told that he stayed four days with his father-in-law. On the fifth day the father-in-law says to him: "Behold, now the day has waned toward evening; pray tarry all night...and tomorrow you shall arise early in the morning for your journey, and go home" (Judges 19:9). The fact that the morning following the night is referred to as "tomorrow" suggests that the new day here begins at sunrise..." (Chapter 5).

All infomation listed under # 71 is from the book 'The Time of the Crucifixion and the Resurrection'.

(72) "The outstanding ceremony of Friday evening is the kindling of  the Sabbath lights or the lighting of the lamps, performed in the Jewish home at the very moment of the entrance of the Sabbath.  This is the oldest and one of the most striking ceremonies observed in connection with the welcoming of the Sabbath...

While we know that this was an old custom we do not know exactly how old it is...the ceremony could not have been observed at a time when the day was reckoned from morning to morning and the Sabbath began with the dawn of Saturday.  And as we have seen above, the change in the mode of reckoning the day to make it extend from evening to evening, with the result that the entrance of the Sabbath took place on Friday evening, was not made before the Greek period..."(Rabbinic Essays, pp. 454 - 456).

(73)  " It is certain that the Sabbath was the day on which regular divine service first took place; praying on the Sabbath was so usual that the synagogues were called "Sabbath houses".   Divine service was at first held only in the day-time, not in the evening, for the evening was utilized by the religious societies for domestic and household celebrations...

Home services on Sabbath Eve were observed as far back as the time of the second temple..." (The Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, Volume 9,  p. 296, 298).

(74)  " Perhaps most significant of all the innovations of the Deuteronomic Reformation was the inauguration of a new calendar.   The old, solar calendar, of Canaanite origin (my note: God's origin) was abrogated completely...Instead, an entirely new calendar was introduced, luni-solar in character and obviously based upon the calendar current in Babylonia at that time...

This new, lunar calendar had been itself invented only a few years or decades earlier by scholarly Babylonian astronomers after significant scientific discoveriesIts adoption by Jewish religious leaders represented therefore a direct and conscious borrowing of a very important institution of foreign culture and the readjustment of Jewish religious festival practice to it.  Moreover, the names of the months of this calendar, which now came into general use within the Jewish community of Palestine, were...Babylonian.. .  This calendar has continued with practically no modification, as the official calendar of Judaism down to this very day."  (As a Mighty Stream : The Progress of Judaism Through History, pp. 242, 243, 282).

(75)  " The BIBLE Definition  ... But the BIBLE definition of the duration of "nights and days" is simple. Even these same higher critics admit that in the HEBREW language, in which the book of Jonah was written, the expression "three days and three nights" means a period of 72 hours -- three twelve-hour days and three twelve-hour nights. Notice Jonah 1:17, "And Jonah was in the belly of the fish THREE DAYS AND THREE NIGHTS." This, they admit was a period of 72 hours. And Jesus distinctly said that as Jonah was three days and three nights in the great fish's belly, SO He would be the same length of time in His grave! As Jonah was in the "GRAVE"... 72 hours, after which he was supernaturally resurrected by God, by being vomited up, to become a savior to the people of Nineveh upon proclaiming the warning to them, so should Jesus be 72 hours in His grave, thereupon being resurrected by God to become the savior of the world! Did Jesus know how much time was in a "day" and in a "night"? Jesus answered, "Are there not twelve hours in a day . . . but if a man walk in the NIGHT, he stumbleth," John 11:9-10.

Notice the BIBLE DEFINITION of the expression, "THE THIRD DAY." Text after text tells us that Jesus rose THE THIRD DAY. See how the BIBLE defines the time required to fulfill "THE THIRD DAY." In Genesis 1:4 God "divided the LIGHT from the DARKNESS, and God called the LIGHT Day, and the DARKNESS He called Night. And the evening (darkness) - (my note: evening is called "day" & = "light") and the morning (light) were THE FIRST DAY . . . and the evening [darkness]  and the morning [light] were THE SECOND DAY, . . . and the evening [ now three periods of darkness called NIGHT -- three nights] and the morning [ now three periods of light called DAY -- three days] were THE THIRD DAY," Genesis 1:4-13.

Here we have the ONLY BIBLE DEFINITION which explains and COUNTS UP the amount of time involved in the expression "THE THIRD DAY." It includes three dark periods called NIGHT, and three light periods called DAY -- three days and three nights, and Jesus said they contained TWELVE HOURS for each period -- a total of 72 hours! That ought to be conclusive! Any seven-year old, near the end of the second grade, could figure it easily. We praise God that His plain truths are revealed UNTO BABES, and hidden from the wise and prudent!" (Does Easter Really Commemorate the Resurrection? - article excerpt).

Note:  This well known Christian author observed a 24 hour sunset to sunset Sabbath "day".

(76)  "evening....morning (my note Gen. 1:5)  Hebrew 'erev and boker mean, strictly speaking, the "sunset" and the "break of dawn",...  Here the two words, respectively, signify the end of the period of light, when divine creativity was suspended, and the renewal of light, when the creative process was resumed.

As Rashbam (my note: Rabbi mentioned earlier) noted, the day here is seen to begin with the dawn."...the Mesopotamian concept of the day as beginning at eventide also has its counterpart in the Bible in the phrase "night and day"...This is the system that governs the Jewish religious calendar, by which the Sabbath and festivals commence at sunset and terminate at the start of the following night."

(Note: See "night and day" and "Solomon's prayer" under the heading "And the Evening and the Morning were the First Day (Genesis 1:5)" in the table of contents.)

"Gen. 32:23-33... The restless Jacob gets up during thenight...he is attacked by a mysterious assailant who wrestles with him until  daybreak...he wrenches Jacob's hip...he vanishes as thesun's rays shed their first lighton a limping Jacob..."  (The J P S Torah Commentary - Genesis, p.8, 226 --The Jewish Publications Society)

(77) "Genesis counts the day from sunset to sunset (my note: as deduced by Rabbis--see # (78) below) like the Greeks, Gauls and ancient Germans.  This custom was observed by the Arabs in Palestine till well within the last cent.   The following are the subdivisions of the day anciently recognized: day-break (morning), midday (the heat of the day), sunset, twilight and evening." (The Encyclopedia of Jewish Knowledge, p. 389).

(78)"Tomorrow Morning Starts Tonight

Aha! An easy one, although it does cause occasional confusion:  The counting of the day from the preceding dusk stems from the biblical pronouncement "And there was evening and there was morning, one day."   From this the Rabbis deduced that the Jewish day commences at sundown.

That's why tomorrow starts tonight." (The Book of Jewish Customs, p. 199). ---Note below:

"As the sun disappears on Friday evening, Shabbat begins.  Indeed, Jewish holidays also begin with sunset.  Why? 

The answer is startlingly simple.  In the first verses of Bereshit / Genesis, God creates light and "there was evening and morning, the first day," (Genesis 1:5).  The rabbis reasoned that if the Torah, the product of divine revelation, said that the first day began with evening, that must have been God's intention, for "days" to begin at sunset." (Essential Judaism, p. 39).

"At the end of the description of each day, we find the phrase: "And there was evening, and there was morning..." Since EVENING IS MENTIONED FIRST, the ancient Rabbis DEDUCED THAT EVENING IS FIRST." (Every Persons Guide to Judaism, p.5). -- Also see Dr. Lauterbach's comments on the Rabbis in his "Rabbinic Essays" listed under the heading "The Day of Atonement--Sifting Through the Traditions" in the table of contents.

(79) "That the custom of reckoning the day as beginning in the evening and lasting until the following evening was probably of late origin is shown by the phrase "tarry all night" (Jdg 19:6-9); the context shows that the day is regarded as beginning in the morning; in the evening the day "declined," and until the new day (morning) arrived it was necessary to "tarry all night" (compare also Num 11:32)" (International Standard Bible Encyclopedia --found under "Day and Night")

(80) Alfred Edersheim wrote: "The day was computed from sunset to sunset, or rather to the appearance of the first three stars with which a new day commenced.   Before the Babylonish captivity, it was divided into morning, mid-day, evening, and night ..." (The Temple, Its Ministry and Services, chapter 10--Listed under "The Week").

(81)  In the King James Version of the Bible 2 Corinthians 11:25 is translated: "Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep;..."

The Greek word "nucyhmeron" is translated as " a night and a day".  'Robertson's Word Pictures' states, "Night and day (nuchthemeron) Rare word. Papyri give nuktemar with the same idea (night-day).  'Vincent's Word Studies' adds, "A night and a day...A compound term occurring only here in the New Testament, and rarely in later Greek...Lit., I have made (spent) a night and a day in the deep."

Some commentators, such as John Gill state: "The word (nucyhmeron) , "a night day", signifies a whole natural day, consisting of a night and a day; and is an Hebraism, and answers to (rqbw bre) , "the evening and the morning", which make a full day;..."  Speaking of Genesis 1:5 mentioned above, Gill writes: "and the evening and the morning were the first day: the evening, the first part of the night, or darkness, put for the whole night, which might be about the space of twelve hours; and the morning, which was the first part of the day, or light, put also for the whole, which made the same space, and both together one natural day, consisting of twenty four hours..." (John Gill's Exposition of The Bible). So Gill believed that the Greek word "nucyhmeron" is similar to "the evening and the morning" of Genesis and equals a 24 hour day.  John Gill was familiar with ancient traditions:

"He (my note: Gill) preached in the same church as C. H. Spurgeon over one hundred years earlier...his works contain priceless gems of information that are found nowhere except in the ancient writings of the Jews ..." ( http://bible.crosswalk.com/Commentaries/ ).

Another author (of the 'Handbook of Biblical Chronology') believes that the beginning of a Biblical day varied at different periods in history and was generally 24 hours in length. He writes, "A "day" in the sense of a complete period of light and darkness might be reckoned as beginning with the coming of the light or with the coming of the darkness, as well as of course theoretically at any other point. In ancient Egypt the day probably began at dawn, in ancient Mesopotamia it began in the evening. Among the Greeks the day was reckoned from sunset to sunset..."  This author also writes:

"Gen 1:3“5 the first of the works of creation was "light" in distinction from "darkness," and the light was called day, in Hebrew {Oy (yom), the darkness night, hlyl (laylah). Thus "day" can have the sense of daytime as distinct from nighttime, but the same word can also comprehend the complete cycle which includes both the daytime and the nighttime: "And there was evening and there was morning, one day" (Gen 1:5)..."  While this author believes that the beginning of a day moved around from light to dark throughout Bible history and sometimes even in the same verse, he admits that " In the Old Testament the earlier practice seems to have been to consider that the day began in the morning..."  He also states,  " In the New Testament in the Synoptic Gospels and Acts the day seems usually to be considered as beginning in the morning..."

This same author (Handbook of Biblical Chronology) agrees with John Gill, in that, "evening and there was morning, one day" was a 24 hour day and regarding the New Testament he writes: " For the complete cycle of light and darkness there is a word, nucjh/meron, which combines "night" (nu/x) and "day" (h[me/ra) in one term. This is used in 2 Cor 11:25 where it is translated "a night and a day." (Chapter 2,-- The Reckoning of Time in the Ancient World).

 'Thayer's Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament' defines "nuchthemeron" as, "... a night and a day, the space of twenty four hours..." (p, 431).  The following translations agree that 2 Corinthians 11:25 takes in a 24 hour period:

"...three times I was whipped by the Romans; and once I was stoned. I have been in three shipwrecks, and once I spent twenty-four hoursin the water..." (Good News Bible).

"Three times I have been beaten with Roman rods, once I have been stoned, three times I have been shipwrecked, once for full   four and twenty hoursI was floating on the open sea." (Weymouth New Testament).

So here we have a New Testament word that is defined as " a night and a day, the space of twenty four hours".  'Vine's' adds: "lit., 'I have done a night-and-a-day'..." (p. 432).  Every translation below indicates that this 24 hour period was a Night and a day, or a day and a night.  There was not a single version found that translated the Greek word in question ( meaning "the space of twenty four hours") as simply "a Day".  Why?  Because a Biblical "day" is not 24 hours long.  A Biblical "day" takes in only the period of light and is 12 hours longThe space of 24 hours always takes in the two separate seasons of "day" and "night" (Genesis 8:22).  Please review the following translations of 2 Corinthians 11:25:

"Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned; thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day adrift in the deep;..." (Third Millennium Bible).

"Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked. Once I spent a whole night and a day adrift at sea." (The New Living Translation).

"Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I received a stoning. Three times I was shipwrecked; for a night and a day I was adrift at sea;" (The New Revised Standard Version).

"Three times I have been beaten with rods; once I was stoned. Three times I have been shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been adrift at sea." (The Revised Standard Version).

"Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day have I been in the deep;" (American Standard Version 1901)

"Three times the Romans beat me with a big stick, and once my enemies stoned me. I have been shipwrecked three times, and I even had to spend a night and a day in the sea." (Contemporary English Version).

"Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I was adrift at sea;" (English Standard Version).

"three times Roman officials had me beaten with clubs. Once people tried to stone me to death; three times I was shipwrecked, and I drifted on the sea for a night and a day." (God's Word).

"Three times I was beaten with a stick, once I was pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, and I drifted on the sea for a day and a night." (International Standard Version).

"I was flogged three times; I was stoned once; I was shipwrecked three times; I have spent a night and a day in the deep." (Literal Translation of the Holy Bible).

"Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked. I have spent a night and a day in the deep." (Modern King James Version).

"beaten by Roman rods three times, pummeled with rocks once. I've been shipwrecked three times, and immersed in the open sea for a night and a day." (The Message).

"thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice was I shipwrecked, a night and a day in the deep I have passed;" (Young's Literal Translation).

"Thrice was I beaten with rods: once I was stoned: thrice I suffered shipwreck: a night and a day I was in the depth of the sea." (The Douay-Rheims Bible).

"Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked. I spent a night and a day in the open sea." (The Complete Jewish Bible - see source 123).

"Three different times I was beaten with rods. One time I was almost stoned to death. Three times I was in ships that wrecked, and one of those times I spent a night and a day in the sea." (New Century Version).

"Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I suffered shipwreck. I have been a night and a day in the deep." (Hebrew Names Version of World English Bible).

"Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I suffered shipwreck. I have been a night and a day in the deep." (World English Bible).

"Three times I was whipped with rods, once I was stoned, three times the ship I was in came to destruction at sea, a night and a day I have been in the water;" (The Bible in Basic English).

"Thrice have I been scourged, once I have been stoned, three times I have suffered shipwreck, a night and day I passed in the deep:" (The Darby Translation).

"Thrice was I beaten with rods, once I was stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep;" (Webster's Bible Translation).

"Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked. I have spent a night and a day in the depths of the sea." (The Holman Christian Standard Bible).

Addressing the claim that the beginning of a Biblical day varied at different periods and between the Old and New Testaments, this author writes: " Furthermore, the novel idea that after the exile a new way of reckoning a day was introduced into biblical revelation (apart from God™s approval) undermines the authority and sufficiency of Scripture. How can one maintain that all of Scripture is inspired and yet contend that a different way of reckoning a day was introduced into biblical revelation by the prophets and apostles apart from the divine sanction and approval of the Holy Spirit? Or how can one maintain the authority and sufficiency of Scripture and yet contend that the Old Testament presents the case accurately while the New Testament presents the case inaccurately? Such a view leads one to the position that certain parts of Scripture are of divine origin while other parts of Scripture are of human origin." (When Does The Sabbath Begin? Morning or Evening?).

(82)  "And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea..." (Revelation 7:2).

"In Rev 7:2, the Revised Version (British and American) has "sunrising" for the King James Version "east." (International Standard Bible Encyclopedia: found under the word "Sunrising").  'Vincent's Word Studies' says,  " East...more literally, the sunrising..."

The same Greek word translated as  "East" in Revelation 7:2 is translated as "Dayspring" in Luke 1:78, "Through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspringfrom on high hath visited us..."

'Easton's Bible Dictionary' shows the following definition: "Dayspring...Job 38:12; Luke 1:78, the dawn of the morning; daybreak..."

Putting the above information together we find that the word translated as "East" has the more literal meaning of "Sunrising" and it is also translated as "Dayspring" which is defined as "the dawn of morning, daybreak".  The Hebrew word for "Dayspring" found in Job 38:12 is also defined as "the dawn of morning, daybreak". (See "And the Evening and the Morning were the first day" in the table of contents for more information on the Hebrew word translated as "Dayspring".

"Christ is... the morning Light, the rising Sun, Mal 4:2. The gospel brings light with it (John 3:19), leaves us not to wander in the darkness of Pagan ignorance... but in it  the day dawns... We have as much reason to welcome the gospel day who enjoy it as those have to welcome the morning who had long waited for it. First, The gospel is discovering; it shows us that which before we were utterly in the dark... (Luke 1:79); it is to give light to them that sit in darkness, the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ; the day-spring visited this dark world to lighten the Gentiles, Acts 26:18. Secondly, It is reviving; it brings light to them that sit in the shadow of death, as condemned prisoners in the dungeon, to bring them the tidings of a pardon, at least of a reprieve and opportunity of procuring a pardon; it proclaims the opening of the prison (Isa 61:1), brings the light of life. How pleasant is that light!..." (Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible, Luke 1:78). 

From one end of the Bible to the other a new day begins at the first light of dawn as the sun begins to riseThose who wrote the words found in the 66 books of the Bible understood this concept and we find it within their writings in both the literal sense as well as the figurative sense.

(83)  " LAG BA'OMER is, as the name indicates, the thirty-third day of the 'Omer period, the fifty days intervening between the Passover-Massot Festival and the Festival of Sabu'ot or "weeks"... According to the calendar in official use in Jewish circles since some time about the beginning of the fourth century B.C., the counting of the fifty days begins with the second day of the Passover-Massot Festival, the 16th day of Nisan.  Lag ba'Omer falls therefore upon the 18th of Iyyar.  It is regarded as a semi-holiday, largely of joyous character.  However, never once is it referred to in the Bible...

Tradition has associated Lag ba'Omer closely with Rabbi Simeon b. Yohai.  Upon this day this highly venerated Rabbi, according to tradition the author of the Zohar, is supposed to have died.  Accordingly upon this day the Jews of Safed and from all Over Israel make a pilgrimage to the tomb of Rabbi Simeon at Merom...The journey or pilgrimage to Merom takes place upon the thirty-second day of the Omer period, during the daylight portion of the second half of this day...

However, after nightfall, and with this, according to the present official Jewish system of reckoning the day, the beginning of Lag ba'Omer, the thirty-third day of the 'Omer period, the people assembled gather in large groups closely about the tomb of Rabbi Simeon b. Yohai...( authors note # 2, p, 82: " For the earlier system, current in Israel until some moment early in the fourth century B.C., of reckoning the day from sunrise to sunrise cf. J. Morgenstern, "Supplementary Studies in the Calendars of Ancient Israel," HUCA 10 (1935), 15-28")...

...as has been stated, Lag ba'Omer falls upon the 18th of 'Iyyar and Sabu'ot itself upon the 6th of Sivan.  But in the two earlier calendars (which were in different periods of Israel's history official, the first and oldest calendar, the so-called pentecontad calendar, until the erection and dedication of the first Temple in Jerusalem by Solomon at about the middle of the tenth century B.C., and the second calendar, inaugurated by Solomon, until the adoption of the present, official calendar) such was not at all the case...

Actually the legislation for the bringing of the 'Omer, the first sheaf of the new, annual crop, is recorded in only one passage of the entire Pentateuch, Lev. 23: 9-16...This legislation provides that the 'Omer is to be waved before Yahweh by the priest upon the day following the Sabbath...The basic difficulty here is the determination of the precise dating implicit in the term, "the day after the Sabbath."  The customary interpretation, accepted by most present-day biblical scholars, is that the Sabbath here is the Sabbath which falls within the week of the Passover-Massot Festival.  Such too was the interpretation given of old to this term by three quite ancient Jewish sects, the Samaritans, the Boethusians and  the Karaites.  This would imply, of course that the day of bringing the 'omer was always a Sunday, and also, since the counting of the fifty days which intervened between the day of bringing the 'omer and the Sabu'ot Festival commenced upon a Sunday, the latter festival also would fall always upon a Sunday...

...the year of the pentecontad calendar totaled three hundred and sixty-five days, a true solar year as then reckoned...Each week within each pentecontad, of seven days duration, began then upon what we would call a Sunday, and ended therefore upon Saturday, the Sabbath...

Jesus and his disciples, hailing from Galilee, employed the pentecontad calendar in fixing the time of their celebration of the Massot Festival...

And since, as we have noted, the seventh and final day of the Massot Festival was a Sabbath, the day of bringing the 'omer, and with this of counting the fifty days of the 'Omer period, now fell upon the day immediately following the Sabbath, in other words upon the first day of the week, upon what we call Sunday.  And, very significantly, this practice continued in Israel, with official, priestly sanction, for at least five centuries, until the inauguration of the Priestly Code as the law-code of the official religious practice of the Jewish people...

...the old, original system of reckoning the fifty-day 'Omer period according to the principles and procedure of the ancient pentecontad calendar persisted in Israelite practice until after the composition of the Holiness Code, i.e., until the early postexilic period, and undoubtedly continued in official use throughout the entire period of existence of the second Temple, i.e., well into the fifth century B.C., and very probably until the adoption of the present official calendar of Judaism near the beginning of the fourth century B.C.  Accordingly the present system of reckoning the 'Omer period from the second day of the combined Passover Massot Festival could have been inaugurated, at the very earliest, only at some time shortly after 400 B. C....

Lag ba'Omer, the thirty-third day of the present 'Omer period, was originally the twenty-fifth, the middle, day of this period of the ancient pentecontad calendar, and not improbably also of the solar calendar instituted by Solomon, and as such was observed as a semi-holiday, only after the official adoption of the third, the present-day Jewish calendar, with its shifting of the reckoning of the day of commencement of the 'Omer period from the day following the close of the Passover-Massot Festival to the second day of this festival, eight days earlier than the original system of reckoning the 'Omer period did what had been originally the twenty-fifth, the middle, day of 'Omer period became the thirty-third day thereof, Lag ba'Omer."  (Hebrew Union College Annual-- Article: 'Lag ba'Omer--Its Origin and Import' by Julian Morgenstern, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, p. 81-90).

(84)  "A History of Jewish Time - Book Review...Calendar and Community: A History of  The Jewish Calendar, Second Century BCE -- Tenth Century CE. By Sacha Stern. New York: Oxford University Press, 2001...

Sacha Stern's new book, Calendar and Community, is an historical approach to the evolution of the Jewish calendar over the course of about 1100 years, from the second century B.C.E. to the tenth century C.E., when the calculated luni-solar Jewish calendar in use today was definitively established...

Stern's major thesis is that "the Jewish calendar gradually evolved in this period from considerable diversity to normative unity" (vi). This is in sharp contrast to the traditional rabbinical view, which has decisively influenced most previous scholarship. This view is that there has always been only one Jewish calendar used by all Jews--the rabbinical lunar calendar. At least since the time of the Second Temple the new month was declared upon the observation of the new lunar crescent, as described in the Mishnah and other Tannaitic sources (Stern cites the Tosefta and halakhic Midrashim). Nevertheless, the rabbinical calendar methodology changed from observation to fixed calculation, ostensibly by the publication of the calendar's rules by Hillel the Patriarch in 358/9 C.E., which was a response to the inability of the calendrical court to continue functioning due to persecution. Most modern scholars, with some modification, have endorsed this rabbinical history, along with the rabbinical view of the importance--and reality--of Jewish calendrical uniformity...

In contrast, Stern shows us that both this presumed unity of Jewish calendrical practice, as well as the date and manner of the shift from observation to calculation, are incorrect and reflect only the imaginings of the rabbinic movement. His most important thesis is that for this thousand-year period, there was no unity of Jewish calendrical practice, and that the unity established by the Middle Ages developed gradually as the rabbinic movement grew. In fact, for Stern, evidence of use and non-use of the rabbinic calendar can be used as a marker of rabbinic hegemony in the Jewish world...

For Stern, the importance of the Dead Sea Scrolls calendar texts is to show definitively that in the late Second Temple period there is no single "Jewish" calendar, for "both solar and lunar calendars were variously observed, in a relationship that remains somewhat unclear"...

By the late first century C.E., all evidence of Jewish use of solar calendars disappears. This is particularly noteworthy because, according to Stern, "whilst the non-Jewish calendars of the Roman Near East were switching from lunar to solar reckonings, the Jewish calendar was evolving, in the very same period, in the opposite direction: in the first century C.E .... the Jews appear to have lost all interest in the solar calendar, so that only the lunar calendar prevailed" (44). Stern proposes that as a result the "lunar calendar (formerly Babylonian, now Jewish) became to the Jews a marker of cultural difference" (45)... it seems likely that the demise of the Jewish solar calendar is probably related to the destruction of Jerusalem, the Second Temple, and Qumran by the Romans during the Jewish War of 70 C.E...

...It is well known that the Mishnaic texts describe in elaborate detail a process by which a rabbinical court would take testimony about the appearance of the new moon, declare the new month, and communicate this to the rest of the Jewish world via signal fires and messengers. While there is evidence of a rabbinical calendar court existing in Palestine until at least the ninth century (190)--and at the same time, that the calendar had not yet reached its final form (185)--the nonrabbinic textual and archeological evidence that Stern marshals shows that the court's decrees were not universally heeded. Even in Palestine--but also in Egypt and Asia Minor--it seems that many Jewish communities kept their own calendar, at least until the sixth century. Many of these used a method similar to the observationally determined lunar calendar of the Mishnah, while others used a form of calculation similar to the later rabbinical calendar. As an example, Stern interprets the complaint at the Council of Nicaea (325 C.E.)--one of whose main tasks was to unify Christian observation of Easter and separate it from the Jewish observation of Passover--that the Jews "celebrate Passover twice in the same year" as implying that different Jewish communities used different calendars (84)...

His major finding, of great importance to the study of late Antique Judaism, is that this diversity of calendars "suggests that as late as the sixth century rabbinic authority in calendrical matters was yet to be established outside the main rabbinic communities" (vi)...

Nevertheless, it is clear that the rabbis placed great importance on calendrical unity; the problem was that the observational system itself made this almost impossible to achieve. The result, according to Stern, was the slow evolution toward the calculated Jewish calendar, starting in the third century...

...Stern argues that the development of a calculated calendar was mainly a response to the internal needs of the rabbinic movement. In particular, the purpose was to "ensure that Babylonian rabbis were able to observe the same calendar as in the Land of Israel" (255). The Palestinian rabbis, Stern suggests, were willing to alter their calendar and adopt a fixed methodology in the fourth century in order to secure the Babylonian rabbis' loyalty.This was probably the result of an incremental process over the course of the third and fourth centuries in which "ever-multiplying calendrical rules ... may have simply overrun the old Mishnaic system" (256).The final form of the calculated calendar was settled in the tenth-century dispute between the Babylonian R. Saadya Gaon and the Palestinian R. Ben Meir, in which Saadya rejected Ben Meir's calendar decision as not in keeping with the calculated "four gates" calendar table, which was already widespread at that time...

While Stern notes that as late as the sixth century there is evidence of diversity in Jewish calendar practice, by the tenth century this has disappeared. This is broadly significant, concludes Stern, because the "evolution of the Jewish calendar reflects, in a sense, a wider historical pattern. To some extent it epitomizes the gradual development of solidarity and communitas among the Jewish communities of late Antiquity and the early Middle Ages, and hence, the development of an increasingly united culture and religion" (vi). This, he notes, developed in concert with the geographic expansion of the rabbinic community from Palestine to Babylon, Egypt, North Africa, and Europe, "eventually to dominate the whole of world Jewry" (211)." (Judaism -Winter - Spring, 2003).

(85)  "The older Biblical term for the whole day was "yom wa-lailah" or "yomam wa-layelah" (my note: "day and night")." Later "ereb wa-boker" (my note: "evening and morning") was used (Dan. viii. 14)... " Boker" (my note: "morning")  is literally the break of day, " 'ereb" (my note: "evening")  the decline of day.

Among the ancient Israelites, as among the Greeks, the day was reckoned from sunset to sunset. This was the custom also of the Gauls and ancient Germans, and was probably connected originally with the cult of the moon. There is, however, evidence that this was not the custom at all times; e.g., the expression "day and night " in Lev. viii. 35; Num. ix. 21; Jer. viii. 23, xvi. 13, xxxiii. 25; Isa. Ix. 11; Ps. i. 2; xxxii. 4; xlii. 4, 9; lv. 11; Lam. ii. 18; I Sam. xxv. 16; I Kings viii. 59. So too some claim that in Gen. i. 5 et seq. the day is reckoned according to the Babylonian manner, from morning till morning(see Delitzsch in Dillmann's commentary on Gen. i. 5).

Further evidence that the reckoning of the day from the evening is of later date is found in connection with the sacrificial service, in which the oldest customs were undoubtedly most rigidly preserved. While in the Talmud the day is always counted with the preceding night , as, for instance, in regard to the prohibition of killing the young with its mother on the same day (Lev. xxii. 28), with reference to sacrifices which had to be eaten on the day on which they were offered the night is counted with the day preceding it(Hul. 88a).

The division into day and night was originallyvery indefinite, and there was no accurate measurement of time.The distinctions were made according to the successive natural stages or the occupations in daily life. The early morning is "'alat hashahar," literally "rising of the morning [star]."

The morning is "boker," or "the sun rose" (Gen. xix. 23, xxxii. 31).

Midday is "zaharayim," literally "the double light," that is, the time when the sunlight is brightest; or "the heat of the day" (Gen. xviii. 1; I Sam. xi. 11); or "the perfect day" (Prov. iv. 18).

Afternoon and evening are "'ereb," the time of the day's decline (Judges xix. 8); or "the wind of the day" (Gen. iii. 8), that is, the evening breeze..." (Article: "Night", (The Jewish Encyclopedia, p. 303)

(86)  In Professor David Blumenthal's "Reading Genesis" project, he (re) writes the creation narrative of the 12th century Rabbi,Rashbam based on his understanding of what the writer was trying to say and compares this narrative to three other rabbinic commentaries on Genesis chapter 1.  He  asked his students to (re) write the creation narrative from the point of view of the various commentators.  Professor Blumenthal wanted to know: "how did Rashi, Ibn Ezra, Rashbam, and Ramban "read" the text? Did they have a grasp of how the narrative would look if written from the point of view of their commentaries?  If so, just how would one (re)write the narrative line so as to reflect their interpretations? What would "Rashi's Genesis" look like? "Ibn Ezra's Genesis"? " Rashbam'sGenesis"? and "Ramban's Genesis"?...

Blumenthal writes: "The most widely read book in rabbinic Jewish culture is not, properly speaking, a book but a commentary to a book. It is Rashi's commentary to the Tanakh...No one with an education rooted in the tradition finds his or her way into the scriptural text without Rashi (1040-1105, northern Europe). His commentary, which is a mixture of explication and midrash, was and remains the key to the rabbinic understanding of the Tanakh..."  Speaking of Rashbam's commentary, the Professor states: "...He hews very closely to the text yet his commentary to this chapter is omitted from many of the standard editions of rabbinic commentaries; why? He is the grandson of Rashi..."  Please review a few excerpts fromRashbam's(re) written commentary on Genesis chapter one and you may begin to wonder if there were other reasons why his commentary is "omitted from many of the standard editions of rabbinic commentaries":

Verse 2: "the earth as we know it was completely empty, for water covered it up to the upper heavens. Darkness that was not night was over the depths, and there was no light in the heavens. A wind blew across the waters."

Verse 3: "God said, "Let there be light" to correct the lack of light, and there was light."

Verse 4: "God looked at the light and saw that it was beautiful. God divided the light into a unit of twelve hours and the darkness into a unit of twelve hours."  

Verse 5: "God named the newly-formed unit of twelve hours of light "day"and the newly-formed unit of   twelve hours of darkness "night," and they have been so called ever since, day always preceding night. Daylight turned to evening as its light faded; then, morning broke as the morning star signaled the end of night. The first of the six days of creation referred to in the Ten Commandments was, thus, completed and the second day began (2)."

Blumenthal's note (2) on verse 5 reads: "Rashbam is, thus, of the opinion that the day begins and ends in the morning."

Verse 14: "God said, "Let there be bodies of light in the expanse which is below the upper heavens to signal the actual division of day from night, which is sunset and the appearance of the stars, and night from day, which is sunrise. Let them also be used to indicate miraculous signs, to calculate the holidays and the calendar, to mark the beginning and end of day and night, and to delineate the four seasons of the year."

Verse 16: "God made the two large bodies of light, the larger to rule the day and the smaller to rule the night together with the stars."

Verse 18: "to rule during the day and the night, and to signal the beginning of day with the rising of the sun and the beginning of night with the setting of the sun and the appearance of the stars. God looked at the heavenly bodies and saw that they were beautiful." (Reading Genesis: See source # (110) below to read the entire text).

(See # (47) and # (76) above, listed under "Quotes").

In a second (re) written commentary (Reading Genesis) by Ibn Ezra, the text in Genesis 1:5 reads:

"by naming the light "day" and the darkness "night." The diurnal sphere revolved once, day blended into evening and night blended into dawn (9), day one."

Note (9) on verse 5 reads:  "The days of creation thus begin and end at daybreak, not at evening."

In an email to Professor Blumenthal, I asked him if he could shed any light on Ibn Ezra's apparent struggle with days beginning at "dawn" (his Genesis commentary) vs "evening" ( his dream / poem - see # (48) above, listed under "Quotes").  Although Professor Blumenthal was not aware of the above information on Ezra (#(48), he gave a very interesting reply:

"The overall problem is, however, as I stated: (1) that we traditionally observe a "day" from evening to evening but the very first day had no evening; and (2) the "day" of the temple, i.e. during which sacrifices could be offered, went from morning to morning. This would, however, not allow any group to split away and start observing the Sabbath on that schedule."

Although tradition would not allow any group to split away and start observing the Biblical Sabbath beginning at dawn, we have seen from Lauterbach, Millgram, Morgenstern and others, that tradition does not always get its way.  The fact of the matter is that some groups did split away or continued without change to observe the Sabbath beginning at first light on Saturday morning.

(87)  "Owing to the regular reading of the Law and to its accessibility, there arose among the Judaeans an intellectual activity which gradually gave a peculiar character to the whole nation.  The Torah became their spiritual and intellectual property, and their own inner sanctuaryAt this time (my note: 420-300 B.C.) there sprang up another important institution, namely, schools for young men, where the text of the Law was taught, and love for its teaching and principles cultivated.  The intellectual leaders of the people continually enjoined on the rising generation, "Bring up a great many disciples."...One of these religious schools (Beth-Waad) was established in Jerusalem.  The teachers were called scribes (Sopherim) or wise men;  the disciples, pupils of the wise (Talmide Chachamim).  The wise men or scribes had a twofold activity:  on the one hand, to explain the Torah, and on the other, to make the laws applicable both to individual and communal life.  The supplementary interpretation was called "exposition" (Midrash)...

An entire set of laws, made for the purpose of preventing the violation of the commands of the Torah, belong to the Sopheric age.  For instance...The loose way in which the Sabbath was observed in Nehemiah's age was replaced by an extraordinarily rigid observance of the Sabbath.  In order to prevent any possible violation of the Sabbath or of the festival days, all work was to cease before sunset on the preceding evening,and an official was appointed to proclaim, by blast of a horn, the proper hour for repose." (History of the Jews, p. 396-397. -  The Jewish Publication Society of America, 1891).

(88)  " Light"...That which emanates from a light-giving body such as a lamp (Jer: 25:10) or the sun;   the opposite of darkness literally and figuratively (Isa. 5:20;  John 11:10, 11)..." (p. 1066)

"Day" ...God introduced this fundamental division of time, when...he caused the moisture-covered earth to experience its first day and night as it rotated on its axis through the light of the sun.  "God brought about a division between the light and the darkness.  And God began calling the light Day, but the darkness he called Night" (Gen. 1:4, 5). Here the word "Day" refers to the daylight hours in contrast with the nighttime...

The Hebrews began their dayin the evening, after sunset, and ended it the next day at sunset.  The day, therefore, ran from evening to evening...

Although the Hebrews officially began their day in the evening, they sometimes spoke of it as if   beginning in the morning.  For example, Leviticus 7:15 says:  "The flesh of the thanksgiving sacrifice of his communion sacrifices is to be eaten on the day of his offering.  He must not save up any of it until morning."...

As mentioned in the creation account, the daylight period is also called "day" (Gen. 1:5; 8:22)...the day's beginning with the rising of the sun or dawning..."(p. 428).

"Hour"...The ancient Israelites may have divided the day-time into four parts. (Neh. 9:3)  The night was divided into three periods called "watches."  Mention is made of the "night watches" (Ps. 63:6), the "middle night watch" (Judg. 7:19) and the "morning watch."--Ex. 14:24...

The Hebrew scriptures (my note: referring to " day"), instead of designating certain 'hours', use expressions "morning," "noon," "midday" and "evening"as time markers for events.(Gen. 24:11; 43:16; Deut. 28:29; 1 Ki. 18:26)  Also, perhaps more precise designations were "as soon as the sun shines forth" (Judg. 9:33), "the breezy part of the day" (Gen 3:8), "the heat of the day"  (Gen. 18:1),...and "the time of the setting of the sun". (Josh. 10:27; Lev. 22:7)...

In the first century C.E. the Jews used the count of twelve hours to the day, starting with sunrise. (p. 797 - 798).

"Sunrising, Sunset"...These times were pivotal points in the daily life of people in the Biblical period.   For most persons, the dawn opened the curtain on the day's activity and the dusk drew it closed again...

The rising of the sun marked the start of the natural daylight period and, when Jesus was on earth, the start of the counting of the "twelve hours of daylight." (Mark 16:2; John 11:9)..."(p. 1560)

(The above definitions come from the book 'Aid to Bible Understanding')

(89)  " Gen. 1:5...The word " day" is used in Scripture in three ways:

(1) that part of the solar day of twenty-four hours which is light (Gen. 1:5); (Gen. 1:14); (Joh. 9:4); (Joh. 11:9).

(2) such a day, set apart for some distinctive purpose, as, "day of atonement" (Lev. 23:27); "day of judgment" (Mat. 10:15).

(3) a period of time, long or short, during which certain revealed purposes of God are to be accomplished, as "day of the Lord." (Scofield Reference Notes (Gen 1:5) - Scofield Bible).

(90)   The Geneva Bible (16th century) was the Bible of choice for years before the King James Bible came on the scene and continued to be the choice of some after the KJV was introduced.  Within the 'Geneva Bible Translation Notes' we will see the light of truth revealed even though the truth is mixed with tradition:

Regarding the definition of a "day", the 'Translation notes state: "For in ancient times they counted in this way, beginning the day at sunset till the next day at the same time."  The 'notes' continue:

"Lev 23:32 - It [shall be] unto you a sabbath of rest, and ye shall afflict your souls: in the ninth [day] of the month at even, from (o) even unto even, shall ye celebrate your sabbath...(o) Which contains a night and a day: yet they took it as their natural day."

Notice how the 'notes' (Lev 23:32)  wonder about, but do not question why  "a night and a day" is accepted by Judaism as "their   natural day".

Please observe how the 'Translation Notes' recognize what God has in mind when He defines a "day" in the first chapter of Genesis:

"Gen 1:14 - And God said , Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to (I)  divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:...(l) Which is the artificial day, from the sun rising, to the going down."

Although the 'notes' on Gen. 1:14 pick up on the fact that God defines a day as " the sun rising, to the going down", this period of time is called  the " artificial day"   because the ancient tradition that says "sunset to sunset" is the " natural day" is accepted with wonder but without question. 

As we come to the New Testament, the 'Translation Notes' see the same thing that was seen in Gen. 1:14.  This time the 'notes' are not as kind to tradition as they were in the Older Testament:

"Mat 28:1 - In the (a) end of the sabbath, as it (b) began to dawn toward the first [day] of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre....(a) At the going out of the sabbath, that is, about daybreak after the Roman manner of telling time, which considers the natural day to be from the rising of the sun to the next sunrise: and not as the Hebrews, which count from evening to evening....(b) When the morning of the first day after the sabbath began to dawn: and that first day is the same as that which we now call Sunday..."

The scriptural day begins at first light of morning in both the Older and New Testaments.  'The Geneva Bible Translation Notes' see this through a glass darkly, because the beginning of the Biblical day is called " artificial " in the Old Testament and " daybreak after the Roman manner" in the New Testament.  Yes, it is seen, but it is seen through the filter of mans traditions.

A final comment from the 'Translation Notes' on Matthew 20:6 is as follows:

"Mat 20:6 - And about the (b) eleventh hour  he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle?...(b) The last hour: for the day was twelve hours long, and the first hour began at sunrise." (Geneva Bible Translation Notes).

(91)  "The basis for the Talmud was provided by the  sofrim .  These were the copyists of the Torah who were at the same time teachers explaining the sayings of the Torah to the people.  The original text of many laws was not very clear and could not be understood unless they were interpreted.  But the interpretations of the sofrim became accepted, and on the foundation of their explanations there grew an organization of seers and elders that came to be called the Men of the Great Synagogue.

The Great Synagogue acted as a Supreme Court in deciding all religious matters, and it was presided over by the High Priest...

They established a new calendar so that the count of years should begin with Tishri instead of Nisan, and that the day of the blowing of the ram's horn, the first day of Tishri, should be the New Year...

In order to safeguard the Sabbath, they ruled that it is to be observed from sunset on Friday until the stars appear on Saturday...

At noon Friday the shofar was blown six times as a sign that the Sabbath was beginning.  At the first blast of the shofar, all men ceased working in the fields. Then they all came from near and far and gathered before the gates of the city so that they might enter it together.  The stores were still open, but the bolts for the doors were held in readiness.  After the second blast of the shofar it was necessary to lock the stores, but the pots still remained in the ovens.  The shofar was blown a third time, after which all pots were removed from the ovens and candles were lit.  After that the people waited the period of time it takes to bake a small fish, or to place the bread in the oven, and then three blasts of the shofar were blown at once and the Sabbath began...

The Great  Court, later known as the Sanhedrin, issued all decrees and together with the academies it became the law-giving body that regulated the moral and religious conduct of the people and strengthened its ethical concepts.  One of the first activities of the Sanhedrin was the establishment of a "protective fence " (siyag) about the Torah.  It was the function of this "fence" to prevent the people from doing anything to lead them astray from the commandments of the Torah, even when the particular deed had not been prohibited in itself...

Tools and vessels used for the performance of occupations forbidden on the Sabbath, could not be carried out on that day.  As a further safeguard the sofrim ruled that the Sabbath was to be observed from sunset on Friday until sunset on Saturday.."

"...The Mishnaic method of interpretation...became the nerve center of Jewish jurisprudence, and the Jerusalem Talmud explains even where tradition and biblical text were contradictory it was sought to find some way to derive the tradition from the text in order not to impair the sanctity of the scriptural text.  Actions forbidden at one time were permitted at a later date, but both the prohibition and the permission were derived by expounding the same text.  A case in point involved the timing when cultivation of the fields on the year preceding the sabbatical year had to cease..." (The Encyclopedia of Talmudic Sages, pp. 6, 8, 11, 245, 386, 387, 608, 609).

(92)  "Rabbi Eleazar ben Pedat instructed the Babylonian Jews to strictly observe all holidays for two days , as it was the law at the Diaspora.  The problem of the second day of a holiday was then an important matter for the Jews of Babylonia.  This custom of celebrating an extra day was introduced during the time when messengers of the Palestine High Court could not be sent to inform the Babylonians of the beginning of a new month.  Although the Babylonian Jews could have determined the new months themselves, because they also followed the lunar calendar, the Exilarch nevertheless added a day to all holidays for fear that his calculations might differ from those of the High Court in Palestine." (The Encyclopedia of Talmudic Sages, p. 562).

(93) "Midday"...The Hebrew... in... (**Neh 8:3) and the Greek ... in... (##Act 26:13) are strictly the middle of the day, but the Hebrew... in 1Ki 18:29... is a dual form ...meaning " light," hence, light or brightness, i.e. the brightest part of the day (^^1Ki 18:29). See NOON...

"Noon; Noonday"...The word means light, splendor, brightness, and hence, the brightest part of the day (Gen 43:16, Gen 43:25; ++Act 22:6). See also MIDDAY..." (International Standard Bible Encyclopedia).

** 1) "half, middle...1a) half...1b) middle, midday, noon." (Brown-Driver-Briggs, Hebrew Definitions).

^^  " midday, noon...when the sun mounts its highest...noon as a specif. time of day, 1 K 18:29..." (Brown-Driver-Briggs, Hebrew Definitions)

++ " Noon...mesembria...lit., "middle-day" (mesos, "middle," and hemera, "a day")...Acts 22:6..." ('Vine's Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words', p. 434).

## "at midday" translates the adjective mesos, "middle," and the noun hemera, "a day," in the combined adverbial phrase..." ('Vine's Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words', p. 406)

Please observe how "noon / midday" is considered to be a period of " light " and is the " brightest part of the day" in both the Old and the New Testament.

"And the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, Rechab and Baanah, went, and came about the heat of the day to the house of Ishbosheth, who lay on a bed at noon." (2Samuel 4:5). -- ("Lay on a bed at noon - Render, "was taking his midday rest," according to the custom of hot countries. -- Albert Barne's Notes on the  Bible).  

If days began at sunset and were 24 hours long, "midday" would be arrive about 6 o'clock in the morning.  This is certainly not the "brightest part of the day" or the "heat of the day".  If days began at sunrise and were 24 hours long, "midday" would commence about 6 o'clock in the evening.  A time when the day is either growing dark or has become dark.  Obviously not the "heat of the day ".  The answer is that days begin at dawn and are 12 hours long, because "midday" in the Bible bursts on the scene at "noon", " the brightest part of the day", that is also known as the "heat of the day".  

(See Mark 16:2 --  # (71) listed under "Quotes" above).

(Note: Green type listed under # (93) above = my addition).

(94) 'The Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew and English Lexicon' is an invaluable resource for examining the Biblical "Day".  Please consider some examples:

++ "Morning"...morning = forenoon...of end of night... the coming of dawn and even daylight...by looking at it...of coming of sunrise...of beginning of day..." (p. 133)  -  "...all day Ex 18:13 (my note: "from the morning unto evening")...note also the formula...and evening came and then morning Gn 1:5, 8, 13, 19, 23, 31...i.e. the day ended with evening, and the night with morning..." (p. 134)

++ "Day" ...as opposed to night...Ne 8:3 from dawn until mid-day" (p. 398)  (my note: see "midday / noon" # (93) above) .  -- After "dawn" to "mid-day" is covered, the Lexicon goes on to cover most of the rest of the day by using Judges 19:8, 9, 11.  All three verses will be provided, followed by the Lexicons English explanation from the Hebrew.  Please observe once again that a day does not end when the evening first arrives nor does a new day begin.  The day ends with the  last light of evening and night closes the day (see "night" below):

Verse 8:  "And he arose early in the ++##morning on the fifth day to depart; and the damsel's father said, Comfort thine heart, I pray thee. And they tarried until afternoon, and they did eat both of them." (English explanation: "until the declining of the day").

Verse 9: "And when the man rose up to depart, he, and his concubine, and his servant, his father in law, the damsel's father, said unto him, Behold, now the day draweth toward evening, I pray you tarry all night: behold, the day groweth to an end, lodge here, that thine heart may be merry; and to morrow get you early on your way, that thou mayest go home." (English explanation: "the day hath sunk down to become evening...the declining of the day").

Verse 11: "And when they were by Jebus, the day was far spent; and the servant said unto his master, Come, I pray thee, and let us turn in into this city of the Jebusites, and lodge in it." (English explanation: "the day has gone down exceedingly (is far spent)." -- (Verses 8, 9 & 11 p. 398).

++ "Night"...as opposed to day...Is 38:12 , 13 i.e. within one whole day (my note: verse 12: *** "from day even to night"); as close of day" (p. 538) (my note: "night").

*** "From dawn to night" (The Jerusalem Bible), "from day . . . to night--that is, in the space of a single day between morning and night" (Jameson Faucet Brown: Is. 38:12)  --  ++ Same word is used in Genesis 1:5.  ## "... properly dawn (as the break of day); generally morning: - (+) day, early, morning, morrow." (Strong's Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries).

Keil & Delitzsch comments on Judges 19: 9-10, "When at length he rose up, with his concubine and his attendant, to go away, the father entreated his daughter once more: "Behold the day has slackened to become evening, spend the night here! Behold the declining of the day, spend the night here,"...But the Levite did not consent to remain any longer, but set out upon the road...Their commentary continues with verse 11.  "But as the day had gone far down when they were by Jebus,... the attendant said to his master, "Come, let us turn aside into this Jebusite city, and pass the night in it."

(95)  "Hast thou commanded the morning since thy days began,.

          And caused the dayspring to know its place? (2)..."

Authors note (2) on Job 38:12: "...(2) i.e., let each day know just when to break."(p. 191) --

"...the power of the high priest was far from unlimited.  The affairs of the community were, in fact , controlled by a supreme council, or body of elders which came to be known as the Keneset Hagedolah or the Great Assembly...In time under the name of Sanhedrin, it came to be composed of seventy members, for seventy had been the number of elders chosen by Moses "to bear the burden of the people" with him.

The Keneset Hagedolah was a judicial as well as a legislative body.  It tried important cases and interpreted the Mosaic code, thus controlling the social and religious life of the community.  The principle of interpretation which guided the council was expressed in the maxim; "Make a fence around the Law."  That meant that the Torah must be surrounded with other laws which would make its observance doubly certain.  To insure the strict observance of the Sabbath, for example, it was laid down that all work must cease before dark on Friday.  The Torah became an object of intense study, and the art of interpretation, called midrash, was developed to a high degree" (p. 133)  (Outline of Jewish Knowledge - Volume Three, pp. 133 & 191 above - Bureau of Jewish Education)

It is interesting to see how the authors recognize that a day breaks in the morning according to the scriptures.( p. 191) And then according to tradition they give credit to the Keneset Hagedolah for adding the law that all work must cease before dark on Friday.  (p. 133)

(96) "Among other things which the Oriental world, including the Jews, inherited from them (my note: the Sumerians) was their calendar...Their year was divided into twelve months, each one beginning with the new moon. This is known as the lunar year..." (Outline of Jewish Knowledge - Volume One, pp. 21, 22 - Bureau of Jewish Education)

(97)  Speaking of  "early civilizations", this author writes:  "...day and night might be divided into hours, but as the day began at sunrise and ended at sunset, the length of an hour varied throughout the yearA day is an imprecise unit until it is divided into so-many equal hours which together make one artificial 'civil day' which cannot be sharply defined by natural eventsThe idea of a measured day of 24 (or any other arbitrary number of) equal hours, is so recent, that few old languages have an exact word for it.  In Homer the days are counted in 'suns', 'sleeps', or 'dawns'...Evening is 'the time when the oxen are unyoked', as in ancient Irish the morning is imbuarach, 'the yoking'.  Till lately the Scottish ploughman ordered his day by 'youken time' and 'lousen time'...

Ask a child, even an adult, to think of 'time', and a clock-face is likely to be the first mental image to form.  In the mediaeval mind, unfamiliar with clocks, the image might have been a sundial, but as likely the sun itself.  The unformulated thought behind this might well have been that the motion of the sun  is the very source of time, not as for us a product of time and distance.  We may agree with Shakespeare's shepherd Corin that 'a great cause of the night is lack of the sun', but to us the sun indicates time; to the mediaeval mind it made time...

'Men schulde make and use clockis for to knowe the houris of the dai and nyt.' (The Bishop of Chichester, 1449)...

Outside the monasteries, the only indisputably fixed moments of the day...were dawn, noon and sunset...

The labourers were still largely 'hearth-men' dwelling under the lord's roof, as in ancient Greece.  Their daily round was still ordered by the sun, for the communal fire was doused at curfew, and artificial light was a luxury, even to Chaucer:

The day gan fallen, and the derke night...

Berafte me my book for lakke of light...

Reading by candle-light was rare until the fifteenth century, and then was for lords and ladies...

But for centuries yet, street lighting was to be sparse...and night-life seldom sought away from home..." (Clockwork Man, pp. 15, 30, 53 & 70)

(See "Quote" # (43) above)

(98)  "Dayspring"..."The word is of freq. occurrence for the dawn of day, as Eden, Decades (1555), p. 264 (my note: Richard Eden: Decades of the New World (1555), 'The day sprynge or dawnynge of the daye gyveth a certeyne lyght before the rysinge of the soonne.'  Davies (Bible Eng. p. 249 --my note: 'Bible English' by T. Lewis O. Davies, 1875) points out that virtually the same expression occurs in Jg 19:25 'when the day began to spring, they let her go,' and 1 Sam 9:26 'It came to pass about the spring of the day.  'In Gn 32:24 the marg. has 'ascending of the morning' for 'breaking of the day'..." (A Dictionary of the Bible, Edited by James Hastings, p. 574)

(99)  "All the New England clergymen were rigid in the prolonged observance of SundayFrom sunset on Saturday until Sunday night...

It was generally believed in the early days of New England that special judgments befell those who worked on the eve of the Sabbath...

The Puritans found in scripture support for this observance of Saturday night, in the words, "The evening and the morning were the first day," and they had many followers in their belief...As late as 1855 the shops in Hartford were never open for customers upon Saturday night.

Much satire was directed against this Saturday night observance both by English and by American authors.  In the "American Museum" for February, 1787, appeared a poem entitled, "The Connecticut Sabbath."  After saying at some length that God had thought one day in seven sufficient for rest, but New England Christians had improved his law by setting apart a day and a half, the poet thus runs on derisively:--

"And let it be enacted further still

That all our people strict observe our will;

Five days and a half shall men, and women, too,

Attend their bus'ness and their mirth pursue,

But after that no man without a fine

shall walk the streets or at a tavern dine.

One day and a half 'tis requisite to rest

From toilsome labor and a tempting feast..."

(The Sabbath in Puritan New England, pp. 254 - 257)

(See # (62) above listed under "Quotes")

(100)  "The period of the Second Commonwealth was the pinnacle of the history of the Jews.  They are still living on the legacy of the ideas and the institutions which emerged and came into being during that time...

The political history of the Judaeans and their struggle for independence as well as the development of their high ideals of religion during the Second Commonwealth is, indeed, fascinating.  To that story we now turn...

The returned exiles also greatly influenced Judaean thought and religion...The Calendar was changed.  A solar calendar had been used in which the day preceded the night and the new year began with the spring.  This was changed to a lunar-solar calendar, wherein the night preceded the day and the year began in the autumn.  The change of the calendar aroused great opposition.  The author of the book now known as the book of Jubilees strenuously opposed this change (my note: See # (46) listed under "Quotes")...

Before the establishment of the new calendar, the day had been made to begin with the dawn and the night ended it.  In the new calendar, the day was reckoned from sunset to sunset, the day following the night...

...by changing the order of the day which originally began with dawn and now began with sunset, the Sabbath would be profaned (my note: according to the book of Jubilees)...

The calendar employed in the book of Jubilees is exclusively solar.  The days begin with the dawn...

The Bible reckons by a solar calendar...

In a solar calendar the day begins with the dawn...

It has been assumed, through an erroneous rendering of the first chapter of Genesis, that the biblical calendar was in fact lunar.  There the day seems to begin with the evening.  The text which gives the account of the creation says, Darkness was upon the face of the deep.  Then God said, Let there be light and there was light.  Next, God divided the light from the darkness.  The light He called day and the darkness He called night.  Further it is stated, There was evening (that is, the sunset) and there was morning (that is, the dawn), constituting one day.  The common error is to read the text as if it said, "There was nighttime, then daytime, and this made one full day".  Rather it says when the sun set and the sun arose (again) this concluded one day.  In other words, the work of creation, which precedes this statement, is understood as taking place by day.  That day has its sunset, followed by the night, and then, in turn, by the dawn, and this concludes the one day and begins the next.  A lunar calendar is not involved.  The day indeed is from sunrise to sunrise.

The book of Leviticus states that the Israelites should afflict themselves from evening to evening on the Day of Atonement.  This too is not to be seen as proof that the calendar used in the Pentateuch began the day with the evening; the reason God commanded the Israelites to fast on the eve of the ninth and on the tenth day of Tishri was that the Fast of Atonement would consist of two half parts of consecutive days."  (The Rise and Fall of the Judaean State, pp. xx, xx1, 30, 214, 215, 216, 221, and 222).

(101)  "Meaning of the Word "Day."”... It is sometimes used to denote an -indefinite period of time; as, "the day of the Lord," etc... The other use made of this word refers to that part of the solar day ruled by the sun. "God called the light day, and the darkness he called night." And this is the sense in which the word "day" is used throughout the first chapter of Genesis. Why should the use of the word "day" refer to the lighted portion of twenty-four hours in some parts of this chapter and" to vast periods of time in other portions of the same account ? The use of the words "evening" and "morning." as constituting the day, indicates that only a single diurnal revolution is intended. (Bible Doctrine, a Treatise on the Great Doctrines of the Bible, p. 58).

(102)  "The 364-day solar calendar was neither an invention nor was it an innovation of the Covenanters (my note: people of the Dead Sea Scrolls). Rather, as said, there is reason for assuming that roots of this ephemeris reach down into the biblical age and that also in the second temple period it had a wide currency among the Jewish population in "the land" before the introduction of the lunar calendar by the returners from the Babylonian exile."

The Covenanters' secession from mainstream (proto-pharisaic) Judaism, which riveted the life of the individual Jew and the Temple cult to the 354-day lunar ephemeris was ultimately triggered by their adamant adherence to the 364-day solar calendar, in their fervent hope that in the New Jerusalem, the sacrificial service in the New Temple will be conducted by their priests in accordance with their exclusively legitimate solar calendar.   (The Bible and the Dead Sea Scrolls: The Second Princeton Symposium on the Dead Sea Scrolls, pp. 52 & 58)

(103)  "1. And it was evening and it was morning, one day. This is by many understood to mean that the evening followed by the morning constituted one day, the first of creation. This view has been thought to be recommended by its agreement with the usage prevalent among the Jews and several other nations of antiquity, of beginning the day with the evening, and also by Dan. 8: 14, where " evening-morning occurs as an enigmatical equivalent of day. According to another and perhaps preferable opinion, the days of creation are to be reckoned from morning to morning. In favour of this it may be urged, 1. The statement is not that' the evening and the morning were the first day.' " 2. The evening of this as of the other days of creation is spoken of as coming on after the work of the day is over" The day began when the light broke forth at God's command; then followed the other acts of the day, the divine contemplation of the light, dividing the light from darkness, and giving names to each; finally when all was finished it was evening, and this was succeeded by morning. One day is now ended and another begins. 3. From evening to morning would be a night, but not a day, unless the terms are taken with a latitude of meaning which they do not properly possess and which they do not have elsewhere" (my note: ereb)" means simply evening, not the entire period of darkness, and" (my note: boker)" morning, not the entire period of light. For these" night and " day had just been stated to be the proper words. Dan. 8: 14 affords no justification of this extension of the evening and the morning over the whole day. The prophet merely says that there shalt be so many evenings and mornings before the fulfillment of his prediction. He might have said with the same propriety the sun shall set and rise so many times. But it could not be inferred from this that sunset and sunrise covered the entire day...

It appears from a comparison of Gen. 7: 11 and 8: 3, 4 that time was then reckoned not by lunar but by solar months of thirty days each"if solar time is used in the account of the deluge, it seems not improbable that it is used in that of the creation likewise; and solar days are reckoned from sunrise to sunrise." (A Hebrew chrestomathy; or, Lessons in reading and writing Hebrew, pp. 74 & 75)

(104)  The Bible is consistent from beginning to end whenever it points out the start of a new day.  Even in the Chaldee (Aramaic) language found in portions of Daniel, this is the case:

"Then the king arose very early in the morning..." (Daniel 6:19).  Adam Clarke writes, "The king arose very early - By the break of day."  John Gill adds, "Then the king arose very early in the morning,.... Or, "in the morning with light" (i) as soon as ever light appeared, or the day broke: the word for morning is doubled, and one of the letters in it is larger than usual; and all which denote not only his very great earliness in rising, but his earnestness and solicitude for Daniel, to know whether he was alive or not:"  Keil & Delitzsch state, "On the following morning (v. 20 [Dan_6:19]) the king rose early, at the dawn of day...at the morning dawn, namely, as soon as the first rays of the rising sun appeared."

The 16th century 'Bishop's' translation renders Daniel 6:19 as, "...morning at the breake of the day..."  The modern 'English Standard Version shows, "Then, at break of day, the king arose..."  The 'Knox' version, a translation from the 'Latin Vulgate' says, "With the first light of day, the king was up..." (my note: "The first light of day" always comes in the morning and not the evening, which is the last light of day.).

William Gesenius writes in his 'Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament (Including the Biblical Chaldee)', "...Chald" the morning light, dawn, day-break...", pg 653.

(105)  Contrary to popular belief, history shows that there has been a wide range of beliefs regarding the time when the Sabbath day begins. Within Judaism the range includes dawn / sunrise, various times before sunset, at sunset and at dark with the appearance of three stars.  The Seventh Day Adventists have argued for sunrise, 6:00 P.M.. and sunset.  Among those who believe that Sunday is the Sabbath, we see dawn / sunrise, sunset and midnight.

The earliest known Christian Sabbath keepers in America were the Seventh Day Baptists.  If we had lived in the 18th century we would have found that "Many Sabbath-keepers in this part of New Jersey differed from other Sabbath-keepers regarding the time of beginning the Sabbath, believing that it should begin and end at midnight instead of sunset. This led to considerable discussion in the church and denomination, after the church became a member of the General Conference. While the majority held that the only consistent practice was to begin at sunset, yet charity was shown in letting every one decide for himself, and some continued to begin at midnight." (Seventh Day Baptists in Europe and America, Volume 2,  p. 685).

"Seventh-day Sabbath-keeping was introduced in America by the Seventh Day Baptists, who organized their first church in Rhode Island in 1671. In the eighteenth century the German Seventh Day Baptists in the Ephrata community of Pennsylvania observed their Sabbath from 6 p.m. Friday to 6 p.m. Saturday.

"This method of Sabbathkeeping from 6 p.m. to 6 p.m. was apparently advocated by other Seventh Day Baptist groups, as indicated by the discussion of this issue in The Sabbath Recorder, a periodical of the Seventh Day Baptists (my note: 1852).

"For several years most Adventist believers observed the Sabbath according to equatorial time, that is, from 6 p.m. to 6 p.m. Many, however, were not satisfied with this method. Thus some observed the Sabbath from sunset to sunset while others from sunrise to sunrise. In reviewing the entire matter several years later (1868) James White wrote: "the six o™clock time was called in question by a portion of believers as early as 1847, some maintaining that the Sabbath commenced at sunrise while others claimed Bible evidence in favor of sunset"" (The Time of the Crucifixion and the Resurrection, pp. 92, 93 & 95)

(106)  "Ver. 5 (my note Gen. 1:5) Elohim called day... It should be specially noticed that it can be day, only while the light lasts, and that it cannot be day from evening till evening, or from morning till morning, as is commonly supposed; for this space of time includes the darkness as well as the light. The meaning here attached to the words ' day ' and' night' is indicated by their etymology. The word translated ' evening' is from a root which means ' to mingle,' for then it is that light begins to retire, and that darkness mingles with what remains. The word rendered' morning' is from a root which means 'to look upon,' because then the light gradually breaks forth and looks upon the earth; and both are named according to their phenomena...it would appear that the space of day and night was nearly equal. Let us observe that Elohim occupied the day only in His work, not the darkness...Jesus restricts the day to twelve hours, John xi. 9, ix. 4..." (Genesis-In Advance of Present Science, A Critical Investigation of Chapters I to IX, pp. 51 & 52)

(107)  In the 17th century a meeting (June 20th, 1657) took place in the British Parliament. One of the subjects  discussed was what could or could not be done on the Sabbath day (Sunday, as they understood it)? When the topic turned to what constitutes a day, the discussion moved forward with this exchange of thoughts:

"Major-General Disbrowe. To satisfy you that I have scruples, I shall tell you the first, as to the time. It is not yet determined whether the Sabbath-day begins at twelve o'clock on Saturday night.*

(my note - Authors footnote):  "* It appears, from the writings of this period, that Sunday then commenced, in the observance of many Christian professors, as among a few in later times, on Saturday evening. Mr. Nathaniel Bacon, named as a Teller, supra, p. 264, writing in 1647, thus describes the customs of our Saxon ancestors:”

" They made the Lord's day to begin upon Saturday, at three o'clock in the afternoon, and to continue till Monday morning. No pastime, not their beloved sport of hunting, was allowed during all that time: nor no works were to be done but such as concerned the worship of God : and those laws they bound with penalty of fine, if the delinquent were a free man; if he were a bond servant, he was to be whipped."... (my note: The conversation continues):

Sir William Strickland. It is not now to be disputed. It is very apparent that one day of the week is due to God ; " and the evening and the morning was the first day."...

Colonel Holland. I am not satisfied in the time. Divers godly precious people are unsatisfied about the institution of the day. And as to time, it is likewise scrupled by many godly men, who think that only twelve hours is the Sabbath- day..."  (Diary of Thomas Burton, ESQ. Member in the Parliaments of Oliver and Richard Cromwell, From 1656 to 1659, pp. 266 & 267).

(108)  "In the New Testament "Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day?" While ancient Israel did not break down the day using hours one through twelve, they knew that the day began at dawn and that it ended with dark just as the New Testament indicates. They understood that noon is the middle of the day, which also agrees with the New Testament.

 If you have taken the time to read this website you know that the facts above have been addressed. In addition to these facts ancient Israel also understood how to figure a quarter of a day:

"And they stood up in their place, and read in the book of the law of the LORD their God one fourth part of the day; and another fourth part they confessed, and worshipped the LORD their God." (Nehemiah 9:3). (KJV).

While we have always been told that Biblical days are 24 hours long, these Bible translations of this Old Testament scripture (Nehemiah 9:3) tell us a different story:

"For three hours they stood and listened to the Law of the LORD their God, and then for the next three hours they confessed their sins and worshiped the LORD." (CEV).

"For about three hours the Law of the LORD their God was read to them, and for the next three hours they confessed their sins and worshiped the LORD their God." (GNB).

"They remained standing in place for three hours [b]"

(footnote b) "Hebrew for a quarter of a day." (NLT).

 The translations above indicate that "one fourth part of the day" was three hours" and "another fourth part" was an additional three hours for a total of six hours which equals half a day.  A day divided into four parts based on Nehemiah 9:3 would equal a full day consisting of twelve hours. Sound familiar? (John 11:9). If the day was 24 hours long, a quarter of a day would be translated as six hours instead of three hours.

 "The ancient Hebrews were probably unacquainted with the division of the natural day into twenty-four parts; but they afterwards parcelled out the period between sunrise and sunset into a series of divisions distinguished by the sun™s course. The early Jews appear to have divided the day into four parts, (Nehemiah 9:3)"and even in the New Testament we find a trace of this division in (Matthew 20:1-5)"" (Smith™s Bible dictionary, p. 1101).

Reviewing commentaries on Nehemiah 9:3 you would think that you were reading New Testament commentary:

 "one fourth part of the day; the space of three hours, from sun rising, or six o'clock in the morning"" (John Gill)

"Fourth part - For three hours; there were twelve hours in their day"" (John Wesley).

"A fourth of the day means three hours" (Interpreters Concise Commentary, p. 296).

"one fourth part of the day--that is, for three hours, twelve hours being the acknowledged length of the Jewish day (Joh_11:9)." (Jameson Faucet Brown).

"And they stood up (i.e., remained standing) in their place (comp. Neh_8:7), and read in the book of the law of the Lord their God, i.e., listened to the reading of the law, a fourth part of the day (about three hours), and a fourth part (the next three hours) they confessed (made a confession of their sins), and worshipped the Lord their God." (Keil & Delitzsch).

"Three hours (for that is the fourth part of a day) they spent in reading, expounding, and applying the scriptures, and three hours in confessing sin and praying; so that they staid together six hours"Bishop Patrick thinks that they spent the whole twelve hours of the day in devotion"" (Matthew Henry).

"Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day?" (John 11:9) 

(109)  "John xi. 9. Are there not twelve hours in the day ?]" Formerly the Hebrews and Greeks divided the day only according to the three sensible differences of the sun ; when it rises, when it is at the highest point of elevation above the horizon, and when it sets : These are the only parts of a day which we find mentioned in the Old Testament; the day not being yet divided into twenty- four hours. Since that the Jews and Romans divided the day, that is, the spaces between the rising and setting of the sun, into four parts, consisting each of three hours. But these hours were different from ours in this respect, that ours are always equal, being always the four and twentieth part of the day ; whereas with them the hour was a twelfth part of the time which the sun continued above the horizon. As this time is longer in summer than in winter, their summer hours must be longer than their winter ones. The first hour began at sun-rising, noon was the sixth, and the twelfth ended at sun-set. The third hour divided the space between sun-rising and noon: the ninth .divided that which was between noon and sun-set. And it is with relation to this division of the day that Christ says, are there not twelve hours in the day ?" (Oriental Customs, p. 110)

(110)  "...there is not the slightest trace of a day of twenty-four hours among the ancient Hebrews, who had the week and the Sabbath long before they had any acquaintance with the planetary science of the Babylonian priests." (Encyclopedia Biblica, p 4177).

(See the 'Encyclopedia Biblica' (# (64) above), listed under 'Quotes'. 

(111) "DAY.  A creative period, Gen. 1:5, 8, 13, 19, 23, 31;  2:2.  Divided into twelve hours, John 11:9."

"HoursA division of time.  Twelve in the day, John 11:9; Matt. 20:3-12, 27, 45, 46..." 

(Quotes above from Nave's Index - Digest of the Holy Scriptures, pp. 278 & 577).                   


(1)  "I am somewhat convinced that you are 100% right. I read your whole Paper and I loved it." (New York) 

(2)  "This is a very good article.  Makes a lot of sense to me."

(3)  "It can't hurt you to re-visit things, just to be sure. I think you'll find it worth your time to check out that article."

(4)  "Hello!, I myself have been studying about the Sabbath also. My studies also lead me to see that days did not begin at sunset. Like you, I could also write a book on the subject in scriptures alone. One of the best ones is in Ecc.2:13...

here again I do not believe the time of Yahweh's days, months and years are to be kept with the crescent moon... but I do know we are to keep the high Sabbaths!" (Lebanon Tennessee)

(5)  "Hi , Shabbat shalom-tomorrow, of course, when the sun comes up...

I hope you understand that this is a radioactive topic. Meaning it will either taint you in the minds of some people, or blow up this forum ... or both. ;-)

All your questions are legitimate questions - in fact, I have raised the same issue here before. I have put it on the back burner and continued to observe evening-to-evening (just to be on the safe side), pending further study. But when this has come up on the forum before, the responses attempting to debunk the "daybreak" model have fallen short. The discussion seemed to either get too emotional and personal, or bogged down in nit-picking and correcting minor slip­ups in my arguments-while missing the big picture. The last time we brought this up, I was kept so busy answering such minor objections, and being sidetracked (and sidetracking *myself*), that eventually I just tired of it and dropped the whole thing.

Jesus teaching throughout the course of a day, and in verse 35 (my note: Mark 4:35) we read: "And the SAME DAY, when the EVEN WAS COME, he saith unto them, Let us pass over unto the other side." Based on the standard teaching, this "EVEN" should NOT be the "SAME DAY", but it should be the NEXT DAY if a NEW DA Y begins at EVENING. Yet there is not a text in either the Old Testament or the New Testament that tells us that a NEW DAY begins at "SUNSET" or "EVENING".

This is one area of the standard teaching that has always caused problems for me, and now I am beginning to understand why. If evening is the beginning of a new day, it makes no sense to say "that day, at evening." (Such a phrase shows up with regard to Passover, for instance.) It should simply be called "the next day."

If you adhere to the standard model, the phrase "X day at evening" poses a problem, and you have to explain it by interpreting "at evening" to mean "a little before evening," or "the last few minutes before evening really arrived and the new day began." That's a bit too creative of an interpretation for my tastes. And, if that interpretation were correct, as you noted, somewhere in the Bible we should find a verse that says: "that day, at evening, just before the beginning of the new day..." or "at evening, when the day had begun ..." But there is no such verse, to my knowledge.

 The problem with "you shall afflict your souls on the ninth day" is another interesting point (my note: Leviticus 23:32). We afflict our souls the ninth day. And we fast, beginning the ninth day at even (which, according to the standard reckoning, would really be the beginning of the tenth day). This creates confusion and it causes you to find a way to divorce "afflicting your souls" from "fasting" (as the rabbis did, in fact, do). However, this problem is resolved by using a sunrise-sunset reckoning of days.

Also, as you pointed out, the traditional view seizes upon the single example of Atonement-the only Sabbath ever said to begin at sunset and applied it broadly to all Sabbaths, annual and weekly, which seems to me to be taking liberties with scripture.

You've done a good job marshalling a lot of verses and facts. (Also some interesting quotes about the Babylonian influence on the Jewish calendar.) ... The rest of the job is just getting people to listen. A lot of people have gone through a lot of hardship over Friday nights-myself included and will be dismayed to find that it may have all been in vain. But as they say: you live, you learn."

(6)  "I have read your study regarding 12 hours in a day. I found it to be very informative and your study is extensive."

(7)  The following are excerpts from a series of emails (in the order sent) that were received from the same person:

(First email) "I am in the midst of reading your article. Good work!"

(New email) "... your articles, especially the intro-article, got my attention. As I read it, I realized that I am like you--which is to say, that your circumstance and mode of thinking was identical to mine regarding the long-held belief and practice of the sunset/sunset Sabbath. Only in my case it was even worse. I was born... keeping that tradition, and never had the experience of switching from Sunday worship. Perhaps in that way it's even harder for me. I see the strength of your argument not in the endless proof that night does not equal day, but rather in demonstrating that those who make a case for the 24 hour Sabbath (as I have for all of my 38 years!) don't have much of a case. When you expose it to the light and find out that only a small handful of scriptures, wedded with Jewish tradition, make up the entire case for the sunset/sunset Sabbath, it looks pretty flimsy. And I say this as a current, active sunset/sunset observer..."

(New email) "My wife... read your article last night. We've been discussing it this morning. We both see good evidence in the scriptures for a day beginning in the morning. Now we're discussing when a day ends. She leans toward the sunrise to sunrise 24 hour day..."

"It is always hard to change, and harder with every year that one entrenches oneself in a belief and practice. But I've been wrong on so many occasions that I'm getting used to it. It's still hard to admit, but there is precedent; there is a track record of wanting truth more than wanting to maintain pride. So I choke on the remaining pride, gulp it down, and move on toward a better understanding..."

(New email) "We made the "day" issue our whole study for our congregation this past Sabbath day. We went through a goodly number of scriptures, and also discussed many of the points you made in your article. The result was something that doesn't happen too often: consensus. We all agreed, upon looking closely at the scriptural evidence, that there is good reason to believe that a scriptural day begins at first light, and ends at last light. This coming Sabbath day will be the first for most of us to keep it in a different way. For almost all of our group, that means changing the behavior of more than 25 years. For me, it means changing the behavior of ALL of my years. I was born to seventh day Sabbath keeping parents and have known nothing else. Next week I'm going to change from what I have been doing for 38 years.

I think our Father YHWH is testing us, and whittling away at our vanity, pride, and resistance to see whether we will really follow Him. At what point do we freeze up, harden, and no longer accept correction? He wants to know that. That's why it is so important for us to be humble and listen for his calling and leading.

I wrote a summary that may be useful to you if someone is interested in the issue but cannot wade through the long version. I included the best verses to prove both sides of the case. It's pretty compelling when you look at the evidence" (For Summary Click Here):  (Virginia)

(8)  "A friend sent me the 12-hour Sabbath Article a while back...I agree with you [absolutely] about the definition of a "day" !! (the clincher was the evidence from Scripture concerning the "day of Atonement". )...However, the Sabbath is determined by the 4 Quarters of the Moon...

Thanx again for all the detailed and thoroughly researched information!"

(9)  (First Email)  "I have finished reading your paper and am inclined to follow the truth outlined in the scriptures, after having the veil lifted from my thinking."

(New Email)  "We actually will, for the first time this year, keep the holy "days" rather than the holy 24 hour period..." (Dallas Texas)

(10) "You have given us a good case for the 12 hour Sabbath!"

(11)  "Hi,...I just came across your website, Praise Yah!  From the time I was 3 and up my mother taught me in truth (the best she knew, that Yahweh had revealed to her) you know we didn't do x-mas and the other pagan days, and we did keep the Holy Sabbath, and the Holy High Sabbath Days, but it was about a year and a half ago that Yahweh started teaching me of the dawn to sunset Sabbath, but also that His Days (of 24 hours) start at dawn and end at dawn...Praise Yahweh!  Anyway liked reading your article..."

(12)  "You have done a very exhaustive study on this subject.  Somewhere on this road you have taken a wrong turn.

Not going to debate the issue however...

At least you are out doing something to further Scriptural knowledge and discussion."

(13) "I read your article and it was quite interesting.  I'm new to the knowledge of the true Sabbath.  I've been a Sunday keeper all my life until the fall of last year.  As I studied about the Sabbath, I've always felt that t here was something incorrect about the "sunset to sunset" Sabbath.  I actually thought the correct observance of the weekly Sabbath is "sunrise to sunrise" because of the statement in Matthew 28:1 which states "In the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first of the week..."

(14)  "Someone recently sent me a link to your web site. It is absolutely wonderful! I am amazed at how the traditions of men are being dismantled one by one in these latter days...

I came to the understanding of the Sabbath Day almost a year ago. I just focused on the first half of Gen. 1:5 and saw how the second half embellished on the first. I wanted to give you another thing I found helpful (if you have already used it in your paper then please forgive me for I didn't notice it. It is:

If "evening and morning were the first day" as Gen 1:5 states, then how could the first evening precede the first day. Since evening comes at the end of a day, this can work for all subsequent days of creation week, but it can't work for the first day. For the first evening to begin the first day, it would have to come at the end of a day that precede the first day - making the first day no longer the first day - by definition." (Laurel Mississippi)

(15)  (First Email)  "I must admit my initial attitude upon seeing the subject ...was one of "now what!" I only considered reading A Case for the 12 Hour Sabbath after coming across it on a web site. It seemed preposterous to me... but I had to admit this subject wasn't something I had even thought to look into previously.

My husband and I are still going over your article because with God's help we are getting a better understanding of the issue. We now see that the whole subject is a legitimate study in which you have made good points. Thanks for drawing our attention to this." 

(New Email)  "What really impressed me about your subject was the whole idea of light and darkness and how important it is to God from beginning to end. God is still separating the light from the darkness even in people today. I never considered the continuity in this way before. I find the subject so inspirational and profound and GOD used your web site to bringing this to our attention! Thanks for enlightening us."

(New Email)  "...I don't see how anyone after thoroughly looking into the matter can come up with any other conclusion than what you have presented!

One thing we are pleased about is that during the last Feast of Tabernacles we met a fellow who attends an independent Church of God and he mentioned that a family we know was convinced as we were about the Day as defined by God...

During this Passover/unleavened bread season I have been meditating how God had brought his people out of the darkness into the glorious light of day and is continuing to do so..."  (Ohio)   

(16)  "I have been convinced, for some time, that even or evening was at the end of the biblical day. This is contrary to what I was taught when I first became a sabbath keeper. The idea that the day is the light period only seems to be right but is new to me...

Thanks for the information it is very thought provoking."

(17)  ""I'm a Sabbath keeper and I attend the Church of God (7th Day) church here in the Philippines.  I learned about the "Daylight Sabbath" from a friend of mine and I started practicing it last year"

I'm planning to make your article into a "reference book" so I may have an easy to use, handy reference guide which I can take with me wherever I go to meet with other Sabbath keeping people""

(18)  "I keep the Sabbath the way you do! from sunrise to sunset. I also keep the rest of the feast days according to Leviticus 23. The 12 hour Sabbath is the correct way of truly understanding the 4th commandment. Your article is a blessing to me and my family. There are many who are in total agreement with you.

l have downloaded and printed your article. Many of my friends see it and agree with it. I hope to show your article to more people." (Los Angeles California)

(19)  "I had a look at your website (''A Case for the 12-Hour Sabbath) after reading the letter... in the 28 February 2006 edition of ''The Journal: News of the Churches of God'' with the heading, "12 hours in a day." I have downloaded all your information and will read it all through to see the main points you are making.

For a year or two now I have been observing Yahweh's weekly Sabbath and annual ''moedim'' from dawn to dusk, except for those where the observance specified takes in the previous night (Day of Atonement or Reconciliation) or the following night (as with Passover). Formerly, I attended the Worldwide Church of God and, in more recent years, the United Church of God, so I am familiar with sunset-to-sunset observance - but find that it doesn't have any basis when subjected to the light of the Scriptures...

As a result of my independent studies, it became clear that the biblical day since creation was defined as dawn-to-dusk.

In general, then, I am expecting to be in agreement with the thrust of your arguments and the scriptural support you present for the case put forward...

I look forward to hearing from you and reading your material." (Western Australia)

Note: The letter mentioned above "in the 28 February 2006 edition of ''The Journal: News of the Churches of God'' with the heading, "12 hours in a day." -- Can be found in issue 107 (Letters from our readers) at:


(20)  "I have been searching for some time for information about a Dawn Sabbath start instead of the Sunset to Sunset Sabbath I was taught and have been keeping.  Starting the Day at Sunset always seemed backward to me.

I have just downloaded your Article and can appreciate the amount of time, effort. thought and prayer that has obviously gone into this.

Thank you so much..."  (New Zealand)

(21)  Comments from a person on an Internet Forum:

"Just came across this website and wanted to ask you what you thought. I have discussed this issue with some other people but have gotten no where... 

check this out:   http://www.geocities.com/star_sraw/sabbathday.html

...I do keep the Sabbath (Fri/eve to Sat/eve) but I will admit after reading the website on the 12 hour Sabbath the author does present a credible case...

...it is definitely worth looking into this notion of a 12 hour Sabbath."

(22)  Comments from an individuals Blog:

"When does a day begin?

Nothing important gets lost.  It just gets a new name, a new disguise, a new face, and hides in obscurity until it is needed again.

Most Sabbath keepers today follow the Jewish tradition.  Jewish tradition says that day begins at evening time, at the same time that night starts...Untutored children thoughtlessly think... day begins at daybreak.

...a good article on the topic, A case for the 12 hour Sabbath, by Neil Gardner.  Neil makes a comprehensive and detailed case from the scriptures...

Neil Gardner's article is well written and informative, but also long and involved...

After reading Neil Gardner's article I thought: "He makes a good case, I should study this matter again..."

(23)  "I just wanted to say thank you for taking the time to do all the research you have obviously done on this issue and putting it together in one place! Although I am very new to this issue, having only come across it in the past couple of days"I have found it to be extremely compelling. While it is hard to change something that is so ingrained, as you pointed out, we are still required to do so when our minds are opened to what God wants us to do."

(24)  "I really appreciate your article on the 12 hour Sabbath..."

(25)  "An acquaintance recently mailed me a well-written article entitled, "Midday in the Bible:  Was God Confused?" by Neil Gardner.  I would like to get permission to post this article in its entirety on our website as it is very well written..."

(26)  "Thank you for your response back.

My folks and I do keep the weekly seventh day Sabbath. For years we kept it from sunset to sunset; then after given a different understanding through the scriptures we started to keep it from sunrise to sunrise for many years.

Recently I came across your web site the 12hr Sabbath. I did research on all you had to say and it made even more sense to me. I think my folks are still a little unsure, but thinking." (Idaho)

(27)  "I am one that also believes that YHWH made the Sabbath time for 12 hours. Like John 11:9 states: are there not 12 hours in a day."

 (28) "I have spent a lot of time reading your fine material about a DAY, etc. I came to this same position about 25 years ago. I am a minister and writer. The following is something I wrote some time ago"

The attempt to make a DAY in Genesis 1 mean a day and a night, would require an unfounded change in definition right within the text. Having just said that God called the light DAY and the darkness he called NIGHT (Gen. 1:4,5), the Genesis writer would not immediately change the meaning of the word day to mean a day and a night. Having just told us that God divided day from night, he would not merge the two together and call them day.

As the chapter progresses, the definition of what DAY means does not change, for we read that God made the sun and the moon, "the greater light to rule the DAY, and the lesser light to rule the NIGHT" (Gen. 1:14-16). All the way through, DAY means day, NIGHT means night. They stand in contrast to each Other"" (California)

(29)  "I and a few of my friends have recently realized that the day starts at sunrise. We are currently trying to find a feast to attend for this upcoming Feast of Tabernacles with other believers who follow the daylight Sabbath.

Would you have any ideas where we could locate such a feast site?"

(My Note:  I provided some information regarding the question above.  If you know of any groups that fall into this category, please feel free to email me and I will forward the information to anyone who is interested.)

(30)  Naming this site as one of three sources, this person writes on their website:

"Why I believe day begins at morning, not at night"

A Case for the 12 Hour Sabbath, by Neil Gardner""

(31)  "Thank you so, so much.

This (The hours in a Sabbath day) is the exact thing I came to the computer to read about this very moment!"

I am right now pouring over the article (It is very, very long) but I just wanted to say I felt your sincerity as soon as I opened it, and I have not been disappointed in reading it"

I have come from the world, to Jesus and his love for me. I kept Sunday instead of playing when I found it. Then I found Saturday and I thought there was nothing greater. I kept Sunset to sunset for over 20 years. Now I have discovered Gods Calendar in the sky, His months by the moon and his weeks and Sabbaths by the cycles of the moon and now I am looking into his Sabbath hours. I remember a professor at a museum in California try to explain the sundial and how an hour is not 60 minutes, it is a span in a day (I was about 5 or 6 at that time) and it just fascinated me! It is amazing to see that our modern education has us conditioned to understand hours, days, months and years, in a way that was so unlike time in the creation God made . . . Simple and easy, just look and learn!

Please accept my deepest thanks. Truth is raining upon me more now than in many years. I am grateful that he sent you before me to present such a lovely study for my eyes today."

 (32)  "I was so relieved to find your website...I kept feeling like something was not right about the Sabbath from sundown to sundown..."

(33)  This comes from a Sabbath keeping online community:

"Here is a link to help others understand:


Reply to the above post:


Your Scriptural Study is a Really Useful Link to Help Others Understand The TRUE Scriptural Sabbath DAY (LIGHT)!"

(34) “Love your 12hr Sabbath case”

To see more of what people are saying and to read additional articles and posts on this subject, please click on this link.

Your feedback is greatly appreciated.  Thank you. 


Continue On To Notes, Sources And More of the Article...


            Written and compiled by Neil Gardner