Matthew 27:45
Parallel Verses
New International Version
From noon until three in the afternoon darkness came over all the land.

King James Bible
Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour.

Darby Bible Translation
Now from [the] sixth hour there was darkness over the whole land until [the] ninth hour;

World English Bible
Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land until the ninth hour.

Young's Literal Translation
And from the sixth hour darkness came over all the land unto the ninth hour,

Matthew 27:45 Parallel
Clarke's Commentary on the Bible

There was darkness over all the land - I am of opinion that πασαν την γην does not mean all the world, but only the land of Judea. So the word is used Matthew 24:30; Luke 4:25, and in other places. Several eminent critics are of this opinion: Beza defends this meaning of the word, and translates the Greek, super universam Regionem over the whole Country. Besides, it is evident that the evangelists speak of things that happened in Judea, the place of their residence. It is plain enough there was a darkness in Jerusalem, and over all Judea; and probably over all the people among whom Christ had for more than three years preached the everlasting Gospel; and that this darkness was supernatural is evident from this, that it happened during the passover, which was celebrated only at the full moon, a time in which it was impossible for the sun to be eclipsed. But many suppose the darkness was over the whole world, and think there is sufficient evidence of this in ancient authors. Phlegon and Thallus, who flourished in the beginning of the second century, are supposed to speak of this. The former says: "In the fourth year of the 202nd Olympiad, there was an extraordinary eclipse of the sun: at the sixth hour, the day was turned into dark night, so that the stars in heaven were seen; and there was an earthquake in Bithynia, which overthrew many houses in the city of Nice." This is the substance of what Phlegon is reputed to have said on this subject: - but

1. All the authors who quote him differ, and often very materially, in what they say was found in him.

2. Phlegon says nothing of Judea: what he says is, that in such an Olympiad, (some say the 102nd, others the 202nd), there was an eclipse in Bithynia, and an earthquake at Nice.

3. Phlegon does not say that the earthquake happened at the time of the eclipse.

4. Phlegon does not intimate that this darkness was extraordinary, or that the eclipse happened at the full of the moon, or that it lasted three hours. These circumstances could not have been omitted by him, if he had known them.

5. Phlegon speaks merely of an ordinary, though perhaps total, eclipse of the sun, and cannot mean the darkness mentioned by the evangelists.

6. Phlegon speaks of an eclipse that happened in some year of the 102nd, or 202nd Olympiad; and therefore little stress can be laid on what he says as applying to this event.

The quotation from Thallus, made by Africanus, found in the Chronicle of Syncellus, of the eighth century, is allowed by eminent critics to be of little importance. This speaks "of a darkness over all the world, and an earthquake which threw down many houses in Judea and in other parts of the earth." It may be necessary to observe, that Thallus is quoted by several of the ancient ecclesiastical writers for other matters, but never for this; and that the time in which he lived is so very uncertain, that Dr. Lardner supposes there is room to think he lived rather before than after Christ.

Dionysius the Areopagite is supposed to have mentioned this event in the most decided manner: for being at Heliopolis in Egypt, with his friend Apollophanes, when our Savior suffered, they there saw a wonderful eclipse of the sun, whereupon Dionysius said to his friend, "Either God himself suffers, or sympathizes with the sufferer." It is enough to say of this man, that all the writings attributed to him are known to be spurious, and are proved to be forgeries of the fifth or sixth century. Whoever desires to see more on this subject, may consult Dr. Lardner, (vol. vii. p. 371, ed. 1788), a man whose name should never be mentioned but with respect, notwithstanding the peculiarities of his religious creed; who has done more in the service of Divine revelation than most divines in Christendom; and who has raised a monument to the perpetuity of the Christian religion, which all the infidels in creation shall never be able to pull down or deface.

This miraculous darkness should have caused the enemies of Christ to understand that he was the light of the world, and that because they did not walk in it it was now taken away from them.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge


Mark 15:25,33,34 And it was the third hour, and they crucified him...

Luke 23:44,45 And it was about the sixth hour, and there was a darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour...

darkness. That this general darkness was wholly preternatural is evident from this, that it happened at the passover, which was celebrated only at the full moon, a time in which it was impossible for the sun to be eclipsed, natural eclipses happening only at the time of the new moon. (See Introduction to the Comprehensive Bible, p.59.)

Isaiah 50:3 I clothe the heavens with blackness, and I make sackcloth their covering.

Amos 8:9 And it shall come to pass in that day, said the Lord GOD, that I will cause the sun to go down at noon...

Revelation 8:12 And the fourth angel sounded, and the third part of the sun was smitten, and the third part of the moon, and the third part of the stars...

Revelation 9:2 And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace...

The Blind Watchers at the Cross
'And sitting down they watched Him there.' --MATT. xxvii. 36. Our thoughts are, rightly, so absorbed by the central Figure in this great chapter that we pass by almost unnoticed the groups round the cross. And yet there are large lessons to be learned from each of them. These rude soldiers, four in number, as we infer from John's Gospel, had no doubt joined with their comrades in the coarse mockery which preceded the sad procession to Calvary; and then they had to do the rough work of the executioners,
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The Crucifixion
'And when they were come unto a place called Golgotha, that is to say, a place of a skull, 34. They gave Him vinegar to drink mingled with gall: and when He had tasted thereof, He would not drink. 35. And they crucified Him, and parted His garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted My garments among them, and upon My vesture did they cast lots. 36. And sitting down they watched Him there; 37. And set up over His head His accusation written, THIS
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

The Eloi.
"My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"--ST MATTHEW xxvii. 46. I do not know that I should dare to approach this, of all utterances into which human breath has ever been moulded, most awful in import, did I not feel that, containing both germ and blossom of the final devotion, it contains therefore the deepest practical lesson the human heart has to learn. The Lord, the Revealer, hides nothing that can be revealed, and will not warn away the foot that treads in naked humility even upon the
George MacDonald—Unspoken Sermons

Third Stage of Jewish Trial. Jesus Formally Condemned by the Sanhedrin and Led to Pilate.
(Jerusalem. Friday After Dawn.) ^A Matt. XXVII. 1, 2; ^B Mark XV. 1; ^C Luke XXII. 66-23:1; ^D John XVIII. 28. ^a 1 Now when morning was come, ^c 66 And as soon as it was day, ^b straightway ^c the assembly of the elders of the people was gathered together, both chief priests and scribes; and they led him away into their council, ^a all the chief priests and { ^b with} the elders ^a of the people ^b and scribes, and the whole council, held a consultation, and ^a took counsel against Jesus to put
J. W. McGarvey—The Four-Fold Gospel

Cross References
Mark 15:33
At noon, darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon.

Mark 15:34
And at three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, "Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?" (which means "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?").

Luke 23:44
It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon,

John 19:14
It was the day of Preparation of the Passover; it was about noon. "Here is your king," Pilate said to the Jews.

Acts 3:1
One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the time of prayer--at three in the afternoon.

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