The Ministry Of Jesus Did Not Last Three Years

He did not spend three years with the disciples

H.K. Holland
4 min readJun 19, 2021

Like you, I thought the same way. I thought the ministry of Jesus lasted three years. And I thought he started his ministry at 30 years, and at 33 years, he died.

It was until I got curious that I started inquiring where we get some of these ideas. God reveals to you things the moment you start paying attention.

When I inquired, the first thing I did was open my Bible. I really do open my Bible to find out these things. Not boasting, but I am sort of a Berean. You share with me a message, I want to find out where it is, in the Bible.

The thing about him beginning at 30 years, I know where it is. And I realized we don’t read it carefully. But the thing about the three years, that was a puzzle. At first, I felt stupid. I even laughed at myself. When I failed I did a Google search! I was specifically looking for the verses. But Google presented me explanations. I avoided them.

Then I called people I thought knew. But they also didn’t know. So I held the belief for days that the ministry of Jesus didn’t last three years as I always hear.

But days later, I came back to do a deep search on it. When I checked on Google, the word Passover showed up a lot! Okay! So this is what they base on to say that my Jesus’s ministry lasted three years! So I didn’t read the rest of the Google things. I try to avoid Google things. I went back to the Bible and read every single part that talks of the Passover.

That’s when I realized how we can popularize error. First of all, there is no where in the Bible where it says, he started his ministry at 30. The proper quote is this:

Now Jesus himself began his ministry at ABOUT thirty years of age. (Luke 3:23)

It says ABOUT. ABOUT is not EXACTLY. It is an estimate. Luke had his own motives and we don’t know about them. Was he trying to show us a parallel between Joseph and Jesus? Moses wrote and told us that “Joseph was thirty years old when he stood before Pharaoh king of Egypt.” (Genesis 41: 46) Or he was trying to show us a parallel between Jesus and David?

David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years. (2 Samuel 5:4).

Sure, if Jesus started at 30, Luke would have told us the exact age. Maybe there was a play of numbers here…