When Does A Day Begin?

By James on December 1, 2013 in Time
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TIME

 

When Day Begins

Prepared by F J Steed Ph.D.

 

 

 

Also See: The Rabbinical Confirmation of Day Starts With Light

 

History

The nations had different reckonings for the beginning of the day, we will examine the history

 

 “…,..Although the Babylonians, with whose astronomy the Greeks became to some extent acquainted divided day and night (24 hours)..  twelve periods (double hours) … . the Greeks made little use of the measurement for any but purely scientific calculations till Hellenist times …. Ordinarily, in classical times., they did not speak of hour but of ‘cock-crow’, ‘time of full market’ (i.e. mid-morning), ‘noon’, ‘lamp lighting’, ‘time of first sleep’ and the like.

 

When hours were used, they were not of fixed length, but each 1/12 of the day (or night), consequently varying with the season. Our hour is the.. hora aeguinoctialis, l/12 of the day or night at the equinox. Besides the natural reckoning of the day from dawn, it was common in Greece to reckon it officially, for calendar purposes., from sunset to sunset; the Romans reckoned from midnight.” –The Oxford Classic Dictionary.  Oxford., England: Clarendon Press. 1949. page 909

 

One will see that the Greeks started the day at sunset, however the Hebrew nation did not always start the Day in the Greek style. As is seen from this item of history as follows.

 

 Note [236] “Is it possible that some vague reminiscence of this significant reorganization  of the calendar is preserved in the statement of Alberuni (Chronology of Ancient Nations, tran. Sachau 32 f.), “When Alexander had left Greece at the age of twenty-six years, … he went down to Jerusalem, which was inhabited by the Jews; then he ordered the Jews to give up the era of Moses and David, and to use his era instead, and to adopt that very year, the twenty-seventh of his life, as the epoch of this era. The Jews obeyed his command, and accepted what he ordered; for the Rabbis allowed them such a change at the end of each millenium after Moses. And just at that time a millenium had become complete, and their offerings and sacrifices had ceased to be practiced, as they  relate. So they adopted his era, and used it for fixing all the occurrences of their months and days?” (I owe this reference and suggestion to the generous cooperation of my friend and colleague, Professor J. Z. Lauterbach.)

 

There are many notations on the subject by a good number of authorities giving the history of the time, and before the days of the Greek power took over the world as it was in those days. What followed , they then began their year in the sixth month and the Day beginning at the evening instead of the morning as had been done from the first day of Creation down to that time.

 

 

They had followed Moses as YAHUAH had instructed him in the Exodus, one will see that Moses was given the set up of YAHUAH’S calendar before they left Eygpt.

 

Study the book of Exodus to find the beginning of the year.

 

When the Day Begins from Authorities

It is important to notice the reversed reckoning, ‘night and day’ by the prophet Yirmeyahu, in 14:17.

 

Previously, before the exile we read in 5 Mosh.(Deut.) 28:66, of ‘day and night’. This falls into place with the general concept that the mode of reckoning was changed from day and night, before the exile, to night and day after the exile. Or from morning to morning before the exile, to evening to evening after the exile.

From The Interpreter’s One-Volume Commentary of the Bible, by C.M. Laymen, page 3, regarding the creation, specifically concerning Gen. 1:4,5, we read, ‘The most obvious sign of order is the gift of light and its daily separation from the darkness. (Elohim’s mastership) is expressed further in his naming of his works. The one day seems to be reckoned from morning to morning; i.e. (Elohim) works all day till evening  and begins his work again the next morning.-

The Zondervan Pictorial Encyclopaedia of the Bible, by M.C. Tenney, Volume 2, under DAY, says, ‘The concept of a legal or civil day, the period between two successive sun risings, goes back to thecreation story ( Gen. 1:14-19 ), and is found throughout the Bible.”

The Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible, by G.A. Buttrick, under DAY, says, ‘There are three principal uses of the term: (a) The time of daylight, from sunrise to sunset, as contrasted to NIGHT. The day in this sense was divided into morning, noon and evening.” He carries on by saying, “(b) The civil day, a space of twenty  four hours, extending from sunrise to sunrise or sunset to sunset.” And even later, ‘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 … Gradually, however, they began to count from sunset to sunset…”


U. Cassuto, in his Commentary on Genesis 1, (English edition in 1961), says, “There only exists one time standard in the whole period covered by the Bible, i.e., the one taking the morning as the beginning of the day, ‘but in regard to the festivals and appointed times, the Torah ordains that they shall be observed also on the night of the preceding day.-

In this DOES THE DAY BEGIN IN THE EVENING OR MORNING?, of H.R. Stroes, from the Vetus Testamentum, published by Intemational organisation for the study of the Old Testament’, Volume 16, says  on page 474 regarding Gen. 1:5,

“… I do not deny that his (B Jacob, who wrote, ‘Der Abend ist also nicht der Anfang der Nacht, sondern das Ende des Tage”) arguments are nevertheless very strong, even so strong that, considering Gen. 1:5 in itself,  it is justified, in my opinion, to conclude that the morning theory  (a day stretching from  morning to morning) is the most obvious thing.

 

He later  continues to say, We have come to the conclusion with regard to the pre-exilic civil texts that in many cases both  views (morning-morning and evening-evening) are possible but  the tendency is toward the morning theory.” However, Stroes  is very biased against the “morning-morning” theory. He very often also refers to “my point of view”.


A very authoritative Dr. Solomon Zeitlin, of Dropsie College, wrote THE BEGINNING OF THE JEWISH DAY DURING THE SECOND COMMONWEALTH. This was also published in the same “Jewish Quarterly Review”. He starts off by criticising Heawood’s thesis, by saying, ‘Professor Heawood to bolster up his theory, brings together passages from the Pentateuch and the Talmud. He ignores the great difference in time between the periods of the Bible and of the Talmud. The Jews had undergone vast development in their attitude towards religion and hence, in their customs since the biblical period. To ascertain when the Jewish day began we must clear up various matters about the Jewish calendar.

If the calendar was solar, the day began with the dawn; the year began with the Spring or after the Winter equinox. If the calendar was lunar, the day began either when the sun set or when the stars became visible.

‘The calendar used in the Pentateuch was solar, as I had occasion elsewhere to demonstrate. Thus the day began with the morning. In the Pentateuch the word ‘morning’ always preceded the word ‘evening’, as in Gen. 8:23; Lev. 8:35; Num. 9:21; Deut. 28:67. Some scholars who held that the calendar in the Bible was lunar support their opinion by the verse of Gen. 1-5: ‘And the morning and the evening were the first day’ (RV), ‘ and there was evening and there was morning one day’ (JPS).  From this verse they conclude that the evening was first and was followed by the morning The words however should be translated-when the sun set and the sun arose constituted the first day; i.e. the time from sunrise to sunrise completed one day.

This I believe is clear from the passage in the Pentateuch. The Book of Genesis says that first there was darkness and then that light came when (Elohim) said: ‘Let there be light.’ We are told that (Elohim) divided the light from the darkness and called the light day and the darkness night. When the light which (Elohim) created went down, and it became dark, and then when the dawn arose, a full day was completed. Thus, the day really began with the light and lasted until the following dawn.

 Those who hold that the Jewish day during the biblical period began with the evening support their views with the words of Lev. 23:32: These words are not to be interpreted to mean that the calendar used in the Bible started the day with the evening, but that (Elohim) had ordained that the Israelites should fast on the ninth and tenth days of the seventh month, so that the Fast of Atonement actually consisted of two parts of  consecutive days.

 “After the Restoration when the Jewish calendar was changed from solar to lunar-solar, that is the year was reckoned according to the sun and the months were calculated according to the moon, the time of beginning of the year and of the beginning of the day also was changed. In the biblical period the Jewish year began with the Spring and the day began with the morning. In the second Commonwealth when the calendar became lunar-solar, the year began with autumn and the day began with the sunset.

Thus, while in the Pentateuch the word ‘day’ preceded the word ‘night’, in the post-biblical literature the word ‘night’ preceded the word ‘day’, as in the book of Judith where we are told that Judith said to Holofernes that she served (Elohim) ‘night and day.’ In the tannaitic literature the evening preceded the day. We must make clear however, that in the Temple the day was reckoned according to the calendar. The Temple was opened during the day and closed during the night. The services began in the morning and were finished by evening. Thus, the day of the Temple consisted of only half a calendar day, i.e. from sunrise to sunset.” He ends off  by saying, ‘The day during the Second Commonwealth began with the evening ” By “Second  Commonwealth’ he means “post-exilic commonwealth.”

THE BEGINNING OF TIME

The earliest record of time on this earth is found in the book of Genesis where at the Creation of life on this earth a program of time was set. And in Gen. 1 we have 7 days of creation bringing life to the planet which was formally in a state of emptiness, covered with water and darkness.

 

In Gen. 1:14-18, we see the sun, moon and stars shedding their light and Influence upon the Earth, giving days, months and years, as well as light and gravitational influences, on the Earth.

One day we understand is one turn of the earth to the Sun, one revolution.  In these modern days the world has many thoughts on how to relate to such matters.  The generally accepted timing ismeasured from Greenwich, Great Britain, the day beginning at midnight.

Midnight timing to start the day is of rather a recent arrangement – from late Roman times according to Encyclopedia Britannica – but if we go back into the past we will find that the day was considered to begin in the morning at sunrise and to end at the next sunrise. Also there were those who started the day at sunset, ending it at the following sunset.

 

At the present time around the world most people are prepared to follow the midnight to midnight day, however those who follow the Scriptures given to mankind by YAHUAH will find that the rule or principle is given clearly, even if for many years there has been a veil over the face of many of us concerning the matter. 

 

A brother in the USA has written a manuscript entitled “Dayspring” on the subject, and also found some clear and distinct material that needs to be understood, and another brother in South Africa has researched the historical aspect of this and printed a study which is very thorough and clear.

 

Myself I have been a Sabbath keeper of the 7th day all my life, thinking the day started in the evening until over four years ago, now 77 years, of age and it is clear that the day in the Torah started with sunrise, not sunset.

1st day

nightdark

2nd day

night

3rd day

night

4th

day

night

5th day

night

6th day

night

7th day

night

Light creat-ed

rest day began

           Gen. 1:3 Light began the Creation week – called day.

Darkness was called night. The evening or dusk ended the daylight). The morning or dawn ended the night(dark).

So – the evening and the morning was the first day.

First the day and then the night, light and darkness = 1 day.

Soon to the sixth day, then the Sabbath or Rest daycame, starting in the morning (dawn) or sunrise of the seventh – through the daylight and the dark – to the sunrise onthe first day of the week,

General Practice of Sabbath Keepers

The Sabbath is kept by Jews and Christians alike from sunset to sunset, not sunrise to sunrise. This practice by Jews according to authorities, has only been since their * Babylonish exile, when they also began to start the year from the seventh month (autumn) instead of the spring. 

    

JULlAN MORGENSTERN  THE CALENDARS OF ANCIENT ISRAEL “Page 146

Calendar III, as depicted in the primary P2 sections of Lev. 23 and Num. 23-29.

The next stages in the evolution of Calendar III must have come about during the latter portion of the high-priesthood of Johanan and that of his successor, Jaddua, i.e, approximately between 400 B.C. and 335 B.C., just prior to the beginning of the Greek period.

These stages were the institution of Shemini Azeret upon VII/22 and of Yom Kippur upon VII/10, the old New Year’s Day. Apparently, as we have suggested, these two festivals, altogether novel in character and import were the result of concessions by the priestly authorities of the day to persistent folk-practice which they found themselves unable to eradicate.

 

Quite a bit later than the institution of these two sacred days, and therefore no doubt at about or shortly after the beginning of the Greek period,  [236] came the change in the method of reckoning the day, from evening to evening instead of from morning to morning as of old , with, of course, the consequent redating of the festivals, so that the actual moments of their beginning might be set at eventide, instead of at dawn as had been the practice up to this moment, and with this, in turn, the complete fusion of the Passover and Mazzot festivals under the ancient name Pesah, rooted in the true, desert Yahweh-cult.”  [ see note 236 ]

The Rule is Set at Creation

The day proceeds the night, each day for 6 days. the  sequence follows until creation is finished with the morning of the 7 th day. The seventh day begins with the dawn or sunrise as each of the other days did before it, this day was set-apart, YAHUAH rested that day, the work was finished at the END of the 6 th day. With the Sabbath or Rest day we have a finished work of creation.

 

When YAHUAH made a covenant with His people Israel He gave them the Rest day. Ex 20:8-12 tells us why

we keep the rest day each week Rememberto keep the Sabbath day set-apart, the reason – for in 6 days

YAHUAH made the heavens and earth, the sea, and all that in them is and rested – the 7 th day and set it apart

as a day of memorial to Remember the Creator.

 

This is the Memorial Day of Creation

Nothing can change that which was set down at Creation, it is the foundation as it were, the constitutional laws of the world for mankind set to rule the earth. lt is of vital importance that the Sabbath is remembered as it was set at Creation.

The Day beginning with the light – night ending the day in darkness and rest. Start keeping the memorial of Creation when the day begins, in the morning as YAHUAH designed. There is a blessing for you when you are in harmony with the Creator as Isa. 56:1,2,4,5; 58:13-14 promises. See Heb. 4:9 “There remaineth therefore a keeping of the Sabbath (Gr. ‘sabbatismos’) to the people of YAHUAH.”

The Giving of the Manna to Israel – Exd. 16

 

Verse 16 They were to gather enough for the day each morning.

          19  Not to be left until the following morning.

           20 Those who left it over to the next morning found it bad with, worms.

           22 The sixth day (morning) they gathered twice as much.

           23 Prepare for the Sabbath – keep manna till morning (Tomorrow is the Rest of 

                the Sabbath).

           24 The manna kept well till the 7 th day (morning).

           25 For today is the Sabbath of YAHUAH no manna supplied.

lt is clear that in verse 19 it was not to be kept up until the next day – morning. When they kept it for the Sabbath it was kept up until the next morning (day start) – daybreak and used that day as it said in verse 23 – tomorrow is the rest.  In verses 24-25 they were told in the morning, “today is a Sabbath to YAHUAH” – they were not told the night before.

 The Appointed Times of YAHUAH

There were special instructions given as to when and how Israel were to keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread – Passover, and the Day of Atonement.

        Even

        Even

9th day

  night

10th day

  night

How to observe the Day of Atonement –

 

“On the ninth day of the month at evening, from evening to evening, you observe your rest.” Lev. 23:32.

Special instruction was given as to how and when to observe the Atonement. You will see that there is part of the 9 th day and part of the I0 th day. As Lev. 23:27-32 shows. These special times are not to show how the days of the week operate, but are in-structions for these festivals where they apply

As in the Feast of Unleavened Bread – Exd. 12:15-18 – the 14th day of the month at even  until the 21 st day of the month at even

      *  Even

Even      *

14th

day

 15

day

16

day

17

day

18

day

 19

day

 20

day

21st

day

Passover Exd. 12 – in the first month, I0th day a lamb or kid chosen, kept up until the 14th day and killed at dusk (between the evenings). lt was to be eaten with unleavened bread and bitter herbs, they were to be dressed ready to leave Egypt – the blood to be on the door posts and lintels for a sign. They were not to go out of the house before morning, for at midnight the destroying began of those not covered by the blood of the lamb

Lev. 23:5 –   The 14th day of the Ist month at even is YAHUAH’s Passover (killing of the lamb). The PASSOVER itself took place at midnight (Exd. 12:1214,29), this is still the 14th of the Ist month. lt is a night much to be remembered (Exd. 12:42). This whole thing was on the 14th day sunrise to sunrise.

Num. 33:3 – a new day, Israel left Egypt “on the 15 th day of the Ist month; on the morrow after the Passover.” Next day – when morning came.

Lamb killed  “passover”day light, night Israel left Egypt I4th day sunrise  15th day`

Because there are special laws as to when these festivals are to be observed it does not change the fact that the day begins at dawn. The other festivals have no such instructions as for these two, Passover and Atonement, were special times to do with salvation or destruction. There was a choice in both cases.

 

First – to belong to the People of YAHUAH, Passover.

Second – to remain with the People of YAHUAH , Atonement.

Both being under YAHUAH’s protective hand.

YAHUAH direct your understanding and keep you in His power.

 

Note on the beginning of the day already quoted read on. 

Note [236] Is it possible that some vague reminiscence of this significant reorganization of the calendar is preserved in the statement of Alberuni (Chronology of Ancient Nations, tran. Sachau 32 f.), “When Alexander had left Greece at the age of twenty-six years, … he went down to Jerusalem, which was inhabited by the Jews; then he ordered the Jews to give up the era of Moses and David, and to use his era instead, and to adopt that very year, the twenty-seventh of his life, as the epoch of this era. The Jews obeyed his command, and accepted what he ordered; for the Rabbis allowed them such a change at the end of each millenium after Moses. And just at that time a millenium had become complete, and their offerings and sacrifices had ceased to he practiced, as they  relate. So they adopted his era, and used it for fixing all the occurrences of their months and days?” (I owe this reference and suggestion to the generous cooperation of my friend and colleague, Professor J. Z. Lauterbach.)

WHEN DOES THE SABBATH BEGIN ?

 RABBINICAL ESSAYS BY JACOB Z. LAUTERBACH            

HEBREW UNION COLLEGE PRESS

CINCINNATI  1951

From page 446 – 451 with notes

Before we proceed to describe the ceremonies of the entrance of the Sabbath we must ascertain the exact time of her appearance, that is, at what time of the day the arrival of the Princess Sabbath was expected. This will help us to understand better certain features in the arrangements for welcoming her. As the Sabbath is the seventh day of the week and extends over one whole day, a brief discussion of the development of the Jewish system of reckoning the day is necessary to determine the time of the coming in and the going out of the Sabbath.

 

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, i.e, with the last moment before the dawn of the next morning. The very description of the extent of the day in the biblical account of creation as given in Gen 1:5 presupposes such a system of reckoning the day, for it says: “And it was evening and it was morning, one day.” This passage was misunderstood by the Talmud, though significantly enough when the Tosefta  cites in proof Esth. 4.I6 where the order  occurs, but does not cite the passage in Genesis or was reinterpreted to suit the later  practice of a different system. But it was correctly interpreted by R. Samuel b. Meir (1100-1160) when he remarked “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.”

There are many more indications in the Pentateuch pointing directly or indirectly to the mode of reckoning the day from morning to morning. To mention but a few such indications; when prescribing that a Thanksgiving offering must be consumed on the very same day on which the sacrifice is slaughtered, the Law states “on the same day it shall be eaten, ye shall leave none of it till the morning” [52] which directly indicates that the day comes to an end on the next morning.[53] And when in special case, as e, g., 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.” [54 ] This indirectly but unmistakably points to a mode of reckoning the day from morning to morning.[55] In post-exilic times, however, probably not later than the beginning of the Greek period, [56] 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. In certain spheres of the population the older system continued to be in use, either exclusively or side by side with the newer system. Thus in the Temple service the older system continued all through the time of the existence of the second Temple, and there the day was reckoned from morning to morning, or as the Talmud [57] puts it [Hebrew quoted] “In sacrificial matters the night follows rather than precedes the day.” [58] ” In some circles  [59] or among some  Jewish sects  [60] the older system continued and the Sabbath was observed from Saturday morning to Sunday morning For those groups, as for the people of the time prior to the introduction of the new system, the night following the Sabbath and not the night preceding it formed part of the Sabbath, and the morning of Saturday — not Friday evening — marked the entrance of the Sabbath.· But the majority of the people, following the teachings of the Halakah. [61] reckoned the day from evening to evening and the entrance of the Sabbath for them came after the sunset of Friday or on Friday evening.

All the arrangements for welcoming the Sabbath and the ceremonies connected with it were set for Friday evening.

 

NOTES ON THE ABOVE TEXT  on pages 447 – 451

[52] Lev. 22.30; see also Lev. 7.15.

[53] For further proofs see Morgenstern, loc, cit., to which I will add one point from the Passover legislation in Ex.12 which is not pointed out there. The law in Ex. 12 prescribes that the Paschal lamb be slaughtered on the fourteenth day of the month and eaten at the following night and that nothing be left till the next morning (verses 6-I0). And we are told that on the very same day, i.e., the fourteenth of the month Elohim brought out the children of Israel from the land of Egypt ( ibid., verse 5I )· And in verse 42 of the same chapter we read as follows: “It is a night of watching unto the Yahuah for bringing them out of Egypt.” Now then, if they came out at night that is, in the night following the fourteenth day, and it is said on the very same day, that is on the fourteenth day, they were brought out, it clearly indicates that the night following the fourteenth day is still part of that day.

[54] The Rabbis of the Talmud who nowhere allude to and probably no longer knew of the earlier mode of reckoning the day felt the difficulty in the phrase: “Ye shall afflict your souls on the ninth day,” and when commenting on it they say: “But are we to fast on the ninth day?” (Yoma 81b, R. H. 9a,b). A very sound objection indeed. For if the day had in Bible times been reckoned from evening to evening, as it was in talmudic times, then the phrase: “In the ninth day of the month at evening” contains a contradiction in terms, for the evening is already part of the tenth day. Besides the special injunction “from even unto even shall ye keep your Sabbath” would be entirely superfluous, for any other day also extends from evening to evening. The talmudic explanation that the meaning of the passage: “Ye shall afftict your souls on the ninth day” is to say who eats on the ninth day performs a Jewish religious duty and it is accounted to him as if he had fasted both on the ninth and tenth days (ibid.,loc.cit.) is, of course, a homiletical subterfuge. The fact is that the Rabbis of the Talmud no longer knew or would not acknowledge that in ancient times there was another mode of reckoning the day according to which the evening preceding the tenth day still belongs to the ninth day. In the case of the Day of Atonement the Law especially prescribes that the fast be observed in a new manner, covering part of the ninth and part of the tenth days.

[55] ‘See also H. J. Bornstein in Ha Tekufah V1, 254 and 303 ff, and especially 313.

[56] See Morgenstern, op.cit,. p. 179, note. Also “Three Calendars of Ancient Israel,” in Hebrew Union College Annual X (Cincinnati, 1935; 146, note 236. The fact that the Samaritans also reckon the day from evening to evening would not be any argument against the fixing of this period  for the innovation. For, in the first place we do not know the exact date the Samaritans finally and absolutely separated from the Jews. Furthermore or they may have accepted Jewish practices even after the separation, may independently of the Jews, have interpreted the passage in Lev. 23.32: “From even to even shall you keep your Sabbath” to apply to every Sabbath and Holiday and not only to the Day of Atonement. In my paper referred to above (note 47) I expressed the idea, which was accepted by Morgenstern (“The Sources of the Creation Story” op. cit., p. 179, note) that the statement in the Talmud (b. Ber. 33a) that the men of the Great Synagogue instituted the ritual of Kiddush and Habdalah, also points to the time of the beginning of the Greek period for the innovation of the system of reckoning the day from evening to evening, since the ceremonies of Kiddush and Habdalah are now observed on Friday evening and Saturday night respectively.

 

I would, however; now qualify this idea somewhat to the extent we must understand the talmudic statement to refer to the last generation of the men of the Great Synagogue, who lived after the beginning of the Greek period. It is however, possible that the reference is to the earlier Men of the Great Synagogue Yet this would not necessitate the fixing the date for the innovation of the system in reckoning the day before the Greek period. For the talmudic statement only says that they instituted a ritual for consecrating the Sabbath at its entrance and for marking  its distinction from the week days at its going out but does not say when the coming in and going out of the Sabbath at the time when these rituals were first introduced, took place. According to the Talmud (ibid., loc cit.) some changes as to when or where the ritual of the Habdalah should be recited were made even during the period of the Men of the Great Synagogue. It is therefore not impossible that another change in the time for reciting these rituals also took place during the period of the Men of the Great Synagogue. When the older generation of that period first instituted these rituals they may have been recited at Sabbath morning and at Sunday morning respectively. Then, when the reckoning of the day was changed the times for reciting these rituals were correspondingly shifted to Friday and Saturday night respectively. (See below note 58.) The passage in Neh.13.I9-2I does not necessarily prove that already at the time of Nehemiah, the night preceding the Sabbath was part of the Sabbath as assumed by Bornstein (op. cit., p 305). See Morgenstern, “Three Calendars of Ancient Israel,” op. cit., P 22, note 36.

[57] Hul. 83a.

[58] This simply means that in the sanctuary the conservative priests persistently held on to the older practice though in all other spheres of life it had been abolished or changed The fact that in the Temple service the night followed the day is another support for the theory that the innovation was introduced in the period of the Men of the Great Synagogue (see note 56). For had it been introduced earlier in that period in the time of Ezra and Nehemiah, before the, Temple was rebuilt and the sacrificial cult restored it would have been introduced into the Temple service also. The Temple may have been slow in admitting changes in practices that were continuously observed but when the service was instituted anew and everything reorganized there would have been no reason to go back to a practice which had been observed in pre-exilic times, but discontinued for a time and changed

[59] According to the Talmud (p. Ned. 8.1 [40d]) even among the common people the older system continued and in the popular language [~Hebrew quoted ~~ ~~] the day included the following and not the preceding night. See commentary [ Hebew] ad loc.and cf.. also Bornstein,, op. cit P 311. Likewise the author of the Gospel according to Matthew has preserved also reckon the day from evening to evening would not be any argument against the fixing of this period  for the innovation. For, in the first place we do not know the exact date the Samaritans finally and absolutely separated from the Jews.

 

Furthermore or they may have accepted Jewish practices even after the separation, may independently of the Jews, have interpreted the passage in Lev. 23.32: “From even to even shall you keep your Sabbath” to apply to every Sabbath and Holiday and not only to the Day of Atonement. In my paper referred to above (note 47) I expressed the idea, which was accepted by Morgenstern (“The Sources of the Creation Story” op. cit., p. 179, note) that the statement in the Talmud (b. Ber. 33a) that the men of the Great Synagogue instituted the ritual of Kiddush and Habdalah, also points to the time of the beginning of the Greek period for the innovation of the system of reckoning the day from evening to evening, since the ceremonies of Kiddush and Habdalah are now observed on Friday evening and Saturday night respectively. I would, however; now qualify this idea somewhat to the extent we must understand the talmudic statement to refer to the last generation of the men of the Great Synagogue, who lived after the beginning of the Greek period.

 

For the talmudic statement only says that they instituted a ritual for consecrating the Sabbath at its entrance and for marking  its distinction from the week days at its going out but does not say when the coming in and going out of the Sabbath at the time when these rituals were first introduced, took place. According to the Talmud (ibid., loc cit.) some changes as to when or where the ritual of the Habdalah should be recited were made even during the period of the Men of the Great Synagogue. It is therefore not impossible that another change in the time for reciting these rituals also took place during the period of the Men of the Great Synagogue. When the older generation of that period first instituted these rituals they may have been recited at Sabbath morning and at Sunday morning respectively. Then, when the reckoning of the day was changed the times for reciting these rituals were correspondingly shifted to Friday and Saturday night respectively. (See below note 58.) The passage in Neh.13.I9-2I does not necessarily prove that already at the time of Nehemiah, the night preceding the Sabbath was part of the Sabbath as assumed by Bornstein (op. cit., p 305). See Morgenstern, “Three Calendars of Ancient Israel,” op. cit., P 22, note 36.

[60]. Benjamin of Tudela (second half of the twelfth century) reports about  a certain Jewish sect on the island of Cyprus whose members observed the  Sabbath from Saturday morning to Sunday morning, or as he puts it, who  desecrated the night preceding but kept holy the night following the Sabbath  day. See [ Hebrew Quoted ]      L. Griinhut, I (Frankfurt a. M., 1904)  p. 23. According to S. A, Poznanski in his introduction to Eliezer of Beaugency’s  commentary to Ezekiel and the twelve minor prophet” (Waraw, 1913), P 43,  Ibn Ezra’s attack in his  [Hebrew] (Kerem Hemed V [Prague 1839], 115 ff.)  was directed not against R. Samuel b. Meir and his interpretation of Gen.1.5, but against those heretical sects who drew practical conclusions from this  interpretation and observed the Sabbath from morning to morning. Cf, also Bornstein, op cit., 304.

[61]But even among those who followed the HaIakah allusion to the continuance of the older system and traces of an extension of the Sabbath rest to the night following Saturday are to be found. Thus in commenting on the different expressions [Hebrew] used respectively in connection with the commandment about the Sabbath in the two versions of the Decalogue (Ex.20.8  and Deut. 5.12) the Mekilta says: “ ‘Remember’ and ‘Observe.’ Remember it before it comes and observe it after it has gone” (Mekilta deR. Ishmael Bahodesh VII [ed. Lauterbach, II, 252]). How to remember the Sabbath before it comes is well illustrated there (ibid., P 253), but no illustration is given as to how the Sabbath is to be observed after it is gone. Instead of such an illustration there is added the remark about the conclusions which the teachers drew from the interpretation of the word “observe” as meaning “observe it after it has gone” This remark reads: [Hebrew quoted] Hence the teachers said: “We should always increase what is holy by adding to it some of the non-holy.” But no illustration of the observance of the Sabbath after it has gone is given in the Mekilta.

News BulletinRabbis Confirm That The Day Begins With Light NOT Dark!!!

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