The simplest answer for the “third day resurrection” is “to fulfill all righteousness, according to scripture”!
There are at least 34 references in the New Testament that includes “be fulfilled”, i.e.; Mathew 1:22, 2:15, 2:23, 4:14, 5:18, 8:17, 12:17, 13:35, 21:4, 24:34, 26:54, 26: 56, 27:35, Mark 13:4, 14:49, Luke 1:20, 21:22, 21:24, 21:32, 22:16, 24:44, John 12:38, 13:18, 15:25, 17:12, 18:9, 18:32, 19:24, 19:28, 19:36, Romans 8:4, Revelations 6:11, 17:17 & 20:3!!
There is an overall pattern within all of Scripture that begins in Genesis and ends in Revelations! In order to establish the pattern to “be fulfilled”; we will only use Old Testament references as the primer pointing to the “third day” question and what is to “be fulfilled” by Jesus The Messiah concerning His death, burial and resurrection from The Gospels!
1) Within the Creation account; the sun, moon and stars were created on the 4th day of creation week, as fore types of;
a) The Messiah as The Light of the world,
b) The Church to reflect His Light of Redemption,
c) the stars as many witnesses to His Life; i.e. “The heavens declare His Glory”! And God rested the seventh day! The 5th & 6th days are fore types of The Church age (note that Eve was taken from Adams side and then God said “very good”) during the 6th day of creation and then God rested the 7th day as the initial pattern for The Sabbath Day. In some Messianic groups it is taught concerning the 7000 year plan of God, as it is not difficult for a discerning Bible student to comprehend, hence the Passion Week Pattern is established, from the beginnings!
2) The sons of Israel, Judah the fourth son to bring forth The Lion of the tribe of Judah and Joseph the seventh son as the suffering servant sold by his brothers; both as fore types of the person and Ministry of the Appointed King to come; 1st and 2nd coming! These can also be placed on a line under the creation account within their respective columns days per birth order. From here we can begin to develop a chart, “line upon line, precept upon precept” from the fore types that are consistent through Scripture and required of The Messiah! Should you desire to proceed with this type of study; just make nine columns beginning with zero, leave room for notes and Scripture references and subsequent numbering through eight! Zero for eternity past and eight for eternity future. From that array of columns; Bible history and eschatology can be developed and understood!
3) In the Exodus account, study the calendar days declared and their instructions and compare to the path of Jesus during Passion Week!
A) The lamb brought in on the 10th day (column zero) Ref; Revelations 13:8 “…slain from the foundations…” (before creation from everlasting to everlasting)! The 10th day; both in Exodus and the Triumphal entry were on a weekly Sabbath day introducing The Exodus Passover and Passion Week Passover. He had to borrow a donkey to be “brought in”, to prevent a violation of the Sabbath Day by others during His Redemptive Work!
B) Jesus was examined 4 days (columns zero thru three)! Ref; Exodus 12:3-5 and Luke 23:14,
C) Jesus was slain on the 14th day of that month (column four). Ref; Exodus 12:6-11,
D) As we follow the trek of days out of Egypt where Israel was,
a) forced to observe a Sabbath day (column seven, 17th day of that month); with their backs to the sea, Ref; Exodus 14:1-14 “…encamped…”, (Jesus The Messiah; "kept the perfect Sabbath to satisfy the extra-parameters applied by the Pharisees; physically dead in the tomb on that third day), then,
b) Exodus 14:15-20 “…The Angel of God…removed…” (3 days after; the lamb was slain, breaking the will of Pharaoh in Egypt)! Now let’s compare that to Matthew 28:1, ”At the end of the Sabbath…”, (the distinguishing line, column separator between 7 & 8) At the end of that forced Sabbath, coming out of Egypt, (Israel latter instructed in the wilderness, Ref; Exodus 16; with manna provisions and in The Law of Moses & 10 Commandments “to be remembered”, Ref; Exodus 20:8 & Leviticus 23). As the waters were parted per obedient Moses instruction (a type of Jesus), The Almighty "Removed"; as the fore type of the resurrection, from leading; Israel out of Egypt from being the pillar of smoke by day and fire by night, to becoming the separating protection, pillar and cloud, between His people and the Egyptian army! In a nutshell, God told Moses, “I got this!”,
c)Then compare; Exodus 14:21-31 “…all that night…”, (the evening and morning of the 8th column (the evening and morning of the 18th of that month; sundown Saturday to sunup Sunday) with Mathew 28:6, “…not here…”. He was gone before they got there! It took all night to remove Israel from Egypt, some were closer to the parted waters than others. In synagogues today they practice a liturgy called “Havdalah” which means; to make a difference or distinction, Ref. Acts 20:7-12, “And upon the first of the week...many lights…even till break of day…”! Paul, the apostle to the gentiles, attended Havdalah service at the onset of The Church Age! That night service would coincide with the evening and the mourning of the eighth column!! The early Church maintained Sabbath service and also celebrated The Resurrection on a weekly basis as Havdalah and as in many synagogues today, Havdalah is considered as an extension of The Sabbath until sunrise the following morning, as did Paul
4) Leviticus 23, the same pattern of, months and days with sacrifices pointing to the Ultimate Work of Jesus the Messiah, is prescribed as the message and sequence pattern that must be “proclaimed in their seasons!” Ref. II Timothy 4:2
5) Deuteronomy 18:15 (KJV)
15 The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken;
Thus Jesus, The Messiah; fulfilled the path of Moses bringing Israel out of Egypt and also used Jonah as a fore type and subsequently "fulfilled", according to Scripture and His Word, grafting in the gentiles, via “grace thru faith!” “To fulfill all righteousness”, it was required as the patterns presented in Scripture! Therefore Friday crucifixion does not fit the patterns set forth in all of Scripture! The patterns from the beginnings is fourth day, (His Coming into the world, in the Millennial calendar and establishing the pattern for Passion Week, on Wednesday / 4th day) and at the end of the Sabbath Day (3 days and three nights in the grave as a parallel fulfilment to Jonah’s event) not old wives tales, fables, or traditions of men! If Jesus The Messiah; did not fulfill all righteousness according to scripture, there would be doubts concerning His legitimacy and completed work of Redemption!
Should you desire further proof and pattern, an exegetical study of; three days and three nights, third day, and Sabbath, it can be demonstrated by Scripture of all that was accomplished at and thru “The Cross and the Resurrection”. It is not difficult to assemble 200+ references (depending on translation and text) pointing to and confirming this short assessment to the question presented.
Give a boy a fish and he will hunger again! Teach a boy to fish, and he shall grow up to become a fisher of men!