No, I’m not Jewish. While most Christians will be celebrating Easter, I will be trying to figure out what this time of year really means. Not eggs or Easter bunnies….
Passover is the oldest and most important religious festival in Judaism, commemorating God’s deliverance of the Hebrews from slavery in Egypt and His creation of the Israelite people. Passover begins at sunset on the 14th of Nisan and marks the beginning of a 7 day celebration, the highlight being the Seder meal to celebrate and rejoice in God’s deliverance. Many Christians celebrate Passover to remember the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.
While Jews use this holiday to remember God delivering their nation from slavery in Egypt, all Christians can use it to remember Jesus delivering us from our sins. The below Bible verses will lead you toward worship and praise of God’s provision through Jesus during Passover. BibleStudyTools.com
17 You shall also observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread, for on this very day I brought your hosts out of the land of Egypt; therefore you shall observe this day throughout your generations as a permanent ordinance. Exodus 12
Will you go on this journey with me, as I learn about Passover and Easter? Comments are always welcome and wanted. I am just want to dig deeper than the sugar coated truth the world likes to give me. Jesus is more than just pastel colors and candy right?
I really wanted to study this in depth, so I thought I’d go take a look at how the Jews celebrate Passover. Here are some key points according to chabad.org.
- Passover 2018 will be celebrated from March 30- April 7.
- The first Seder will be on March 30 after nightfall, and the second Seder will be on March 31 after nightfall.
- Passover is celebrated by eating matzah (unleaven bread) and maror (bitter herbs).
- For the duration of the 8 (or 7 days in Israel) of Passover, chametz (leaven) is strictly avoided.
Ok, that’s a start, but it still doesn’t tell me what Passover & Easter are really all about. Plus, I want to make sure I’m celebrating it the way the bible wants me too, drinking lots of wine goes against that.
Let’s read more from chabad.org
The Passover Story in a Nutshell
After many decades of slavery to the Egyptian pharaohs, during which time the Israelites were subjected to backbreaking labor and unbearable horrors, G‑d saw the people’s distress and sent Moses to Pharaoh with a message: “Send forth My people, so that they may serve Me.” But despite numerous warnings, Pharaoh refused to heed G‑d’s command. G‑d then sent upon Egypt ten devastating plagues, afflicting them and destroying everything from their livestock to their crops.
At the stroke of midnight of 15 Nissan in the year 2448 from creation (1313 BCE), G‑d visited the last of the ten plagues on the Egyptians, killing all their firstborn. While doing so, G‑d spared the children of Israel, “passing over” their homes—hence the name of the holiday. Pharaoh’s resistance was broken, and he virtually chased his former slaves out of the land. The Israelites left in such a hurry, in fact, that the bread they baked as provisions for the way did not have time to rise. Six hundred thousand adult males, plus many more women and children, left Egypt on that day and began the trek to Mount Sinai and their birth as G‑d’s chosen people.
In ancient times the Passover observance included the sacrifice of the paschal lamb, which was roasted and eaten at the Seder on the first night of the holiday. This was the case until Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed in the 1st century.
Now we know the story about Passover. But what is it’s meaning. On a side note, I was curious to why the Jews don’t still sacrifice the Lamb? We as Christians know, it’s because Christ was that Lamb. That was the old law that was nailed to the cross. From what I gathered the only reason the Jews don’t still do it is because through-out the years Rabbi’s have stated it is no longer needed or because the Temple (John 2:13-23) is gone so they can’t. Scary stuff if you rely on that to cover your sins… <—- That seems to be a whole other bible study in itself.
Where were we? Oh ya, what is this Holiday all about and is it connected to “Easter”? Will the real bible teaching please stand up, please stand up. LOL 😉
For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments—I am the Lord. The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live; and when I see the blood I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt. Exodus 12
And he said unto them, With desire I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer: Luke 22:15
But the man who is clean and is not on a journey, and yet neglects to observe the Passover, that person shall then be cut off from his people, for he did not present the offering of the Lord at its appointed time. That man will bear his sin. Number 9:13
This study can really get long and deep. I’ll spare you the pages and pages of reading, and try to hit the key points.
The Lord’s Supper
13 Now before the Feast of the Passover, Jesus knowing that His hour had come that He would depart out of this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end. During supper, the devil having already put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, to betray Him, Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come forth from God and was going back to God. John 13:1-3
Jesus wanted to keep Passover with his disciple, and before that event He knew His hour had come. Was it an appointed hour, or did it just work out to be that time?
The Lord’s Supper Instituted
While they were eating, Jesus took some bread, and after a blessing, He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat; this is My body.” And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you; for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins. Matthew 26:26-28
We can see the correlation between Christ and the lamb. He was the blood posted on the door post on during the Passover and His blood was shed on the Cross for our sins. This is super important. We must still make sure the Lambs blood covers our household in protection. His blood covers a multitude of sins (sadly we have a multitude of sins He needs to cover.)
Now we need to marry them together.
So Jesus said to them, “My time is not yet here, but your time is always opportune. The world cannot hate you, but it hates Me because I testify of it, that its deeds are evil. Go up to the feast yourselves; I do not go up to this feast because My time has not yet fully come.” Having said these things to them, He stayed in Galilee…
…So they were seeking to seize Him; and no man laid his hand on Him, because His hour had not yet come. But many of the crowd believed in Him; and they were saying, “When the Christ comes, He will not perform more signs than those which this man has, will He?”
The Pharisees heard the crowd muttering these things about Him, and the chief priests and the Pharisees sent officers to seize Him. Therefore Jesus said, “For a little while longer I am with you, then I go to Him who sent Me. You will seek Me, and will not find Me; and where I am, you cannot come.” …
37 Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’” But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified. John 7-8
Sorry, you needed the whole text. It’s filled with lots of goodies. If you keep reading in your bible it will say over and over it was not yet His appointed time. Jesus new the laws because they came from Him, and by waiting till the Passover He was fulfilling the law, He became the lamb slain (literately, according to some, just as the sacrificial lamb was being slain for passover – Jesus, being that lamb, was being crucified on the cross) and He was the blood on the door post. So Passover and “Easter” should be celebrated as a two-in-one holiday for us Christians. Besides the bible commanded us to teach it through-out our generations. Christ had a time-line He was working to fulfill – willingly. Starting from the beginning (The lamb slain from the foundations of the world Rev 13:8), through Moses and bringing it all together at the cross.
So much study in all of this that I can’t hit. What an awesome God we have. To do this, knowing He was going to do this, for us, because He loved us so much. This world is full of hate right now. It’s everywhere. Christ is love.
If only everyone knew someone loved them that much. Love covers a multitude of sins. We have obtained undeserved forgiveness. You think you’re not worthy to be forgiven; join the party – but the amazing part is that it doesn’t matter. His forgiveness and love is freely given, all we need to do is ask for it. Simple. Ask and you shall receive. He spoke so eloquently yet so easy to understand. As humans we like to talk big, and fill our mouths with many fancy words to make ourselves seem better. But all our rags are filthy. Look at society. You can’t tell me we’re not falling apart at the seams. Why? Because we’ve forgotten our one true love – our first love – our Creator and Father. We’ve filled our household with worldly traditions and kicked Him out. We’ve replaced Him.
I am trying to find ways to bring Him back – to create special family traditions – biblical ones – that serve to replace the replacements. Satan has replaced every commandment and holiday (special observance) we were suppose to keep. We need to find our way back to His original teachings. If you have anything special you do with your family please share. I do not do bunnies and eggs with my children, I never really have – but I also never replaced it with anything either – so my kids had to watch without having something special of their own. We need to remember our Heavenly Father doesn’t take something away without replacing it with something good, and we would do well if we followed in His footsteps.
I found this fun recipe for unleavened bread I wanna incorporate into our celebration.
And it seems the dandelions are out so I can use those as the bitter herbs. 😀 Or maybe a bitter herb butter spread for the bread. Yum. My assumption on why God said to use bitter herbs is because bitter herbs are cleansing herbs – which would go with what God was preparing His people for.
Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. Psalms 51:7
(Quick herb lesson: Hyssop, Its name comes from the Hebrew word adobe or ezob, which literally means “holy herb”)
In my search online I saw that Jews post a red scarf above the door. I think that’s a fun idea and would like to also incorporate that. Hey, if the Jews were commanded to literately put the commandments hemmed to their robes to help them remember and keep them, I think maybe doing these small things can help us remember and keeps God’s statues.
And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. Ezekial 36:27
And let us also remember Jesus rested on the Sabbath day (Saturday) and rose Sunday.