I meant to post this yesterday but what with finishing sewing my skirt (!), getting my VW Bug out of storage (!!) and dealing with some serious migraine, it just slipped my mind! We are obviously taking a break from our marriage series to learn about Passover aka Pesach today. Last night was the first night and my OH and I were honored to be able to attend my sister and brother in laws’ Seder. Enjoy this little bit of ‘Jewish history’ lesson.
“The Lord’s Passover begins at twilight on the fourteenth day of the first month. On the fifteenth day
of that month the Lord’s Feast of Unleavened Bread begins ; for seven days you must eat bread made
without yeast. On the first day hold a sacred assembly and do no regular work. For seven days present an
offering made to the Lord by fire. And on the seventh day hold a sacred assembly and do no regular work.”
Leviticus 23:5 -8
Passover is also called Pesach – it announces that spring has begun on the Jewish calendar.
Pesach means ‘to spring, jump or pass over’ something. Hence the English name – Passover. This name is a biblical reference to when Israel was delivered from slavery in Egypt (found in Exodus chapter 7 to ch 14:29) Here is an excerpt from a great book – God’s Appointed Times by Barney Kasdan
“Because of the increasing hardening of Pharoah’s heart, God had to send ten plagues
to persuade the blinded leader to let Israel go. As devastating as the first nine plagues were,
it wasn’t until the tenth and final plague that Pharoah acquiesed to the God of Israel.
In this judgement, God said he would send the Angel of Death over the land of Egypt to take the
firstborn boy of every household.
With every judgement of God there is also a way of escape. Any household that put the blood
of the sacrificial lamb on its doorpost was given a special promise “…when I see the blood,
I will pass over you. No destructive plague will touch you.” (Exodus 12:13)”
Passover is a holy day commemorating the deliverance of Israel from Egypt. Yet it holds a greater prophetic picture of God’s plan of redemption for the world!
~perhaps the most elaborate feast
~remove any leavened products from home (reminder of how quickly they had to flee Egypt) – leaven (yeast) symbolizes sin. We must clear away any sin from our dwellings and hearts
~Every spring ‘spring cleaning’ takes place to prepare
~then prep for the seder meal Seder means ‘order’ of the service – given in Ex. 12
~ eat three things in memory of – lamb, matzah and bitter herbs
~added later were green veggies, boiled egg, kharoset (apple/nut mix) and 4 cups wine
~All are arranged on a ceremonial seder plate and wine is sipped from a decorative kiddush cup (wine goblet)
~later on a 5th cup was added called the Cup of Elijah. It is filled with “the hope that the prophet Elijah will come, drink from the cup and announce that the Messiah has come.(Malachi 4:5)“
~ Like most feasts, the food is full of symbolic meaning. It shows that theology is also eaten, not only taught.
~The structure of the service was put into the Haggadah, a small book that retells the story and importance of Passover.
~The seder is a ceremonial dinner focused on reading the Haggadah
~ Most often, it is celebrated the first two nights of Passover (it lasts eight days)
~not to eat any leavened bread (any with yeast) for the full eight days
New Testament Observance:
~traditions were set before the first century.
~”the last supper” when Jesus and his disciples had the final meal. They were celebrating the last Passover. We can see the traditions in the accounting in Matthew 26 and Luke 22.
lamb – redemption, blood of the sacrifice
baytzah (boiled egg) – burnt offerings of Temple period
Maror (bitter herbs/horseradish) – bitterness of slavery
Kharoset (apple/nut mix) – sweetness of our redemption
karpas (parsley/green veggie) – life
hand and foot washing – need for cleaning before approaching a holy God
cups of wine – Cup of Sanctification = set apart, sanctify. Cup of Praise = must praise Him who has done great things. Cup of Redemption = the spiritual redemption found in Jesus’ sacrifice. Cup of Acceptance = truth of God accepting His people.
Here are two Passover songs from Youtube you might enjoy:
NEXT YEAR IN JERUSALEM!