Apostle Talk: Future News Now!

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THE PASSOVER – PART 1 OF 7

APOSTLE TALK  –  Future News Now!
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THE PASSOVER – PART 1 OF 7

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This is Part 1 of a seven (7) part series to help you understand the Biblical roots of the Passover. Also, to help you understand WHY and HOW the Passover being celebrated today is different from that given to Moses in the instructions by God in Exodus Chapter 12. HOW did the changes come about and WHY? You will have a deeper understanding and love for your LORD after this study!


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THE PASSOVER – PART 1 OF 7

To the Christian it is most impressive, and it hardly can be less so to the Jew, to notice how very much Christianity and Judaism have in common. Christianity is NOT a religion which is altogether different from that of Judaism. Christianity is the direct outgrowth and development of Jewish life and history as recorded in the Tanakh, the Old Testament.

Jesus the Messiah, Yeshua HaMashiach, came not to bring a new religion, but to fulfill the promises made to the fathers: Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. He came to purchase eternal redemption with His precious blood for BOTH Jews and Gentiles. When the Christian sees that the Brit Chadasha (Hebrew New Testament) is the fulfillment of the Tanakh (Hebrew Scriptures) … and when he sees Yeshua as the Son of David … the One of whom Moses and the prophets did speak … he has a reason to have close kinship with Israel.

The PASSOVER FEAST reveals the entire plan of redemption designed by G-d for purchasing mankind that was separated from Him in the Garden of Eden.

Following are interesting facts concerning the Passover, from Dr. J. Hoffman Cohn’s booklet, A Passover Trilogy.

Only the PASSOVER in Egypt was observed exactly according to the instructions given in Exodus 12. The blood was never again put on the doors of the houses, and instead of being in great haste and ready for travel, the people now observe the Feast from sunset to midnight, with great leisure, profuse praise, and thanksgiving to God for the miraculous deliverance from slavery in Egypt.

When we come to New Testament times, we notice that very definite practices other than we read in Exodus 12 center around the PASSOVER FEAST. The TIME of its observance was fixed in accordance with the full moon after the first day of Spring. This was done so that the people had moonlight to travel by. However, in those days there were no almanacs or calendars giving the exact waxing and waning of the moon. The Sanhedrin, or governing body of the people had to be guided by the testimony of two witnesses.

These men were appointed to go to the highest mountaintop and there scan the sky for the first sign of the new moon. When the first sign appeared, they built bonfires on the top of the mountain. Then the people up and down the land of Judea passed on these signals by building bonfires from mountaintop to mountaintop until all the land was notified that the official witnesses had seen the first sign of the new moon.

Every Jew knew that he should count from that time of the bonfire signals a period of 10 days, and that on the 10th day he was to select the LAMB, and then there were four (4) more days to the actual time of killing the lamb. These four (4) additional days were ample time for each family to examine the LAMB minutely to see if there was any blemish. If such a blemish should be found, the LAMB was to be rejected and another one taken in its place. So it was that the Lord Jesus offered Himself, four (4) days before the PASSOVER, as the LAMB OF GOD that takes away the sin of the world.

It was not on a Sunday, however, but on Monday, the 10th of Nisan, when Messiah made what is now known as the as the triumphal entry into Jerusalem by the way of the “Sheep Gate.” It was at the very time the Jews were selecting the LAMBS for the coming PASSOVER. Yeshua challenged the nation: “Which of you convinces me of sin?” [John 8:46]

There was abundant opportunity to find fault, blemishes, or sin in the Messiah Jesus … four (4) days! However the final verdict came from the lips of Pilate when he cried out to the crowd, “I find no fault in this man!” [Luke 23:4] The Lord Jesus was the LAMB, without spot and without blemish. In Him all the Old Testament types were fulfilled.

Another interesting fact is: it was at sundown that the Lord Jesus observed the last PASSOVER with His disciples, although the official date was a day later. This may seem a contradiction but it isn’t. There were many devout Jews who were so faithful in their desire to serve God and obey His commandments that they often leaned over backwards – went to extremes – to make sure that they did not break “ONE JOT OR TITTLE” of the Law. These devout men were fearful, lest the witnesses might possibly have made a mistake by one day, and so cause the PASSOVER to begin a day over time.

It was therefore the practice, which was legally permitted, that such Jews could properly celebrate the opening night of the PASSOVER one-day ahead of the time officially set. However, they were NOT allowed to eat the PASSOVER LAMB until sunset of Passover evening, the actual time fixed by the Sanhedrin. To this very day the Jews observe two PASSOVER suppers (Seder).

So it was quite proper that our Lord and His disciples partook of the PASSOVER on the evening before, but there was NO LAMB. And how wonderfully divine was this plan, for on the NEXT DAY – the official day – the Lord Messiah Yeshua would offer Himself as the SPOTLESS LAMB slain from the foundation of the world … once for ALL TIME … to make atonement for the sins of the world.


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