“While the Israelites were still in the land of Egypt, the Lord gave the following instructions to Moses and Aaron: “From now on, this month will be the first month of the year for you. Announce to the whole community of Israel that on the tenth day of this month each family must choose a lamb or a young goat for a sacrifice, one animal for each household…The animal you select must be a one-year-old male, either a sheep or a goat, with no defects…These are your instructions for eating this meal: Be fully dressed, wear your sandals, and carry your walking stick in your hand. Eat the meal with urgency, for this is the Lord’s Passover…This is a day to remember. Each year, from generation to generation, you must celebrate it as a special festival to the Lord. This is a law for all time…”
Exodus 12:1-3, 5, 11 & 14 NLT
If you were a Hebrew child born in the times of Jesus, you probably would have been taught by your father about the highly treasured ceremony known as the Passover. In fact, the month of the Passover was made the first month of the Jewish year by God. Why? It is because it signifies the time when God made a distinction between the Israelites and the world around them. The time of the Passover was when God delivered His people from the bondage of Egypt and sanctified, set apart for himself, a nation. God instructed them to spread some of the blood from each family’s Passover lamb across their door when the angel of death was passing through Egypt. This preserved the family from losing their firstborn, unlike the Egyptian homes whose firstborn sons were killed including the Pharaoh’s son. The loss of his son was what caused the Pharaoh to finally let the Israelites leave Egypt and follow God into their Promised Land (Exodus 12:12-13 & 28-31).
God told them to mark this milestone in their history with a holy ceremony every year so that they would remember the Covenant He made with them (Exodus 12:14). As Christians, we too, have reason to remember the Passover because through Christ we have entered into a new covenant with God that is far better than what the Israelites had (Hebrews 8:6). What we have come to term as the ‘communion’ is our own holy ceremony to remember what Christ did for us on the cross, becoming the eternal Passover Lamb.
“…And the disciples did as Jesus had directed them, and they prepared the Passover…When it was evening, he reclined at table with the twelve…Now as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and after He blessed it, He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, “Take, eat; this is my body.” And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, saying, “Drink of it, all of you, for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you I will not drink again of this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”
Matthew 26:19, 26 – 29 (ESV)
There are 7 key things to note about the Passover, that are relevant to believers in Christ today. Firstly, we need to know that the Passover lamb was intended for both God and humanity’s benefit. The sacrifice of Passover lamb enabled God to have what mattered most to Him which is to bring us back into fellowship with Him. The Passover lamb served as a perfect sacrifice – an innocent life in exchange for a sinful one, so that the sinner may become a son/daughter of God. No animal could compare to Jesus, the precious lamb of God.
The Passover Lamb deeply satisfies the innermost craving of humanity – to be restored back to fellowship with God. Jesus provides us with Salvation of every kind: forgiveness of sin, healing, progress/prosperity, strength and so much more! Because of him, we are restored back to a position of dominion over the Earth, to rule as the Kings God intended us to be.
- Thank God for the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, open up your heart to receive by faith His saving Grace in any aspect of your life you really need to experience it in.
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- This article is part of a 7-day series based on the Passover by Bishop Bob Alonge. Watch here.