There laid they Jesus therefore
Because it was a new sepulchre, and no man had been ever laid there before; and some other reasons are added:
because of the Jews' preparation day;
either for the Chagigah, or the sabbath, which was just at hand; the Persic version reads, "the night of the sabbath": for this reason, they could not dig a grave purposely for him; for it was forbidden on feast days; and therefore they put him into a tomb ready made: the canon runs F9,
``they may not dig pits, (twrbqw) , "nor graves", on a solemn feast day.''The former of these, the commentators say F11, are graves dug in the earth, and the latter edifices built over graves; and for the same reason, because it was such a day, they did not take his body to any of their houses, and embalm and anoint it, as they otherwise would have done; but this being a solemn day, and the sabbath drawing on apace, they hastened the interment, and took the most opportune place that offered:
for the sepulchre was nigh at hand;
some say about an hundred and eight feet from the cross, and others an hundred and thirty feet, though some say but fifty or sixty, at furthest it was not far off.
F9 Misn. Moed Katon, c. 1. sect. 6.
F11 Maimon. & Bartenora in ib.