This is a telling of the Passover that I wrote as a fairly young believer, which tells the story with the past, present, and future of Passover in view. We use it in our family and in our congregation, drawing out abiding truth each year. You are free to use it, download it, distribute it. . .for free. It is not to be used for any monetary gain to you or to me or to any other party.
Acts 28:17-29 . . .I have done nothing against our people or the customs of our fathers. . .I have nothing of which to accuse my nation. . .[but] because of the hope of Israel I am bound [as a prisoner].
Acts 23:6 concerning the hope and resurrection of the dead I am being judged!
Acts 24:14-15; Dan 12:2 . . .according to the Way, which they call a cult, so I worship the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the Law and in the Prophets. I have hope in God, which they also accept, that there will be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and the unjust.
Acts 26:6-8, 21-23 . . .judged for the hope of the promise made by God to our fathers. . . .our twelve tribes hope to attain. . . .for this hope’s sake. . .I am accused by the Jews.
Some O.T. References quoted in the N.T. regarding the resurrection connected to Yeshua, and to those in Christ:
Is 25:8; Hos 13:14 1Cor 15:54-55; Rev 21:4 Death swallowed up in victory! Death, where your sting?! Hades, where your victory?!
Is 55:3; Ps 2:7; 16:10 Acts 13:30-35 You are My Son; today I have begotten You;
I will give You the sure mercies of David. Your Holy One will not see corruption.
Ps 16:8-11 Acts 2:22-33 My flesh will rest in hope; You will make me full of joy in Your presence!
Dan 12:2 Acts 24:15 the resurrection of the just and of the unjust
The Apostle Paul did nothing against what was written in the Tanach – Moses and the Prophets. All that became understood to prove that Yeshua was/is God’s Messiah is found in the Hebrew Scriptures. This also includes, for example, that the “day after the Sabbath” – the first day of the week, or, Sunday — would become an important day in the life and the testimony of believers in Him. (Lev 23:11,15-16) The Book of Genesis, written by Moses, also is used to demonstrate why Gentile males do not need to become circumcised in order to be accepted by God. (Gen 15; Rom 4)
Moses and the Prophets write by inspiration of the Holy Spirit that Gentiles (non-Israelis/Jews) have always been in God’s heart in His plan of redemption and salvation: all those who lived before YHVH’s covenant with Abram/Abraham, such as Enoch, Noah, Job; all the families of the Earth would be blessed through God’s choice of Abram/Abraham (Gen 12:3); some Gentiles have a place and a full inheritance with the native Israelis in the Promised Land during the Millennial Kingdom (Ezek 47:21-23).
We today do not accuse our nation, but through the preaching of the gospel and being witnesses of the truth of the risen Lord and Savior, we hope to bring our nation Israel back into the good of the hope which God gave the patriarchs and which they believed. The same opposition faced by the Lord Yeshua and by the apostles and other believers during those early years is the same which we are facing more and more in our own generation in these last days. Yet, by the power and grace of God, though the darkness becomes night, the light is more bright!
The controversy is over who “that Man” JESUS/YESHUA is: man condemned Him to death as a criminal, but He was justified in the Spirit by His resurrection from among the dead – the firstfruits of all who have fallen asleep (1Cor 15:20; Lev 23:9-11). Our hope – and the hope of Israel – is in God who raised up Yeshua our Lord from among the dead, who was delivered up at Passover because of our offenses, and was raised, on the day after the Sabbath, because of our justification. (Rom 4:24-25; Mt 28:1; Lk 24:1; Tit 2:13)
Scripture Reading: Ex. 12:14-20; 1Cor 5:6-8 [Lev. 18:3-4] Purge out the old leaven!
In the Bible there is a vital connection between the past and the present as a preparer for the future. The Word of God is prophetic. The sacrifice of the Passover lamb was God’s provision for the redemption of His people Israel, who were slaves in Egypt and to the ways of the Egyptians; immediately, this redeemed people are told to have no leaven in their houses – put out the old; allow in no new. Then following comes the offering of first-fruits in the promised land leading to Shavuot (Feast of Weeks), with its new meal offering containing leaven, a great difference from what had gone on before (similar to the New Covenant, which is not like the Old Covenant).
Emerging from this, yet transcending it – for God has shown us a more excellent way! – is the Passover sacrifice of the Son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ, with His blood shed for redemption of all who believe that have been in bondage to the world and the sin of it; His burial removing the believer’s sins (leaven), and therefore the condemnation, and on account of this good news we confess and identify in baptism as having died to sin. The thoughts and the lives of the redeemed disciples of the Messiah were forever changed after the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus whom they loved because He loved them, even unto the death of the cross, but it was only knowing and believing that He rose from the dead that dispelled their fears and despair and doubts. Their faith in the certainty of His being alive and firstfruits unto God led them on in joyful obedience and expectation to the fulfilling of the promise from God the Father through Yeshua the Son when the Holy Spirit filled the first 120 believers on Shavuot (Pentecost) as a new meal offering to God, made acceptable by faith in the blood of Jesus for redemption and salvation – both now and forever!
We live today in the light of God’s revelation when the end of the age is upon us and the coming of the Lord Jesus draws near. The Lord’s Supper of which we partake reminds us to remember His death until He comes at the last trump! Christ risen from the dead is our life, our righteousness, our hope.
What do the verses we have read regarding the leaven and the unleavened bread have to teach us in the context of the New Testament regarding our lives as redeemed people? Jews and Israel do it symbolically once a year for seven days throughout all generations; Christians and the Church are to live in the reality and substance of it day-to-day throughout all our days and years: purge out the leaven (the sin) from each our own hearts and life and from the congregation. Get out of the world quickly – bring no leaven with you, the thoughts and ways from which you were delivered; find out the Lord’s will for your new life – do not just do what others have done (Lev. 18:3-4); do not put in new leaven of malice and wickedness, or of [religious] hypocrisy, [scientific] rationalism, or [political] worldliness, which all defile the person. But rather, reckon ourselves dead to sin and alive unto God and righteousness; put off the old man and put on the new man in Christ Jesus throughout our lives! Whoever is born of God does not nor cannot sin as a characteristic or fruit of his life. (1John 3:9; 5:18)
The Lord redeemed us and brought us out of darkness and bondage in order that we should be holy, for He is holy, and that we should be His people and He would be our God – in fact more than this: that we as the Body and Bride of Christ would be a people through whom God can manifest His glory in Heaven here on Earth. We have a heavenly place and testimony to maintain, and to guard against Satan’s warfare against that truth and grace.
Why should we concern ourselves with what the only wise God and Savior obviously takes quite seriously? Because we show that we love Him when we obey Him, and also because through faith in the blood of Jesus, God has made us both holy and righteous (unleavened) in His sight, and we honor the Lord and His cross by living a life of faith which testifies to what God has done for us and to what He has called us to be.
How do we show that we are purging out the old leaven? How do we show that we are thankful for this great salvation and for YHVH who has done it?! How do we show that we have the righteousness which is by faith, and that our faith in Jesus Christ and His blood keeps us in this righteousness of God? What is the lesson of unleavened bread for us as Christians?
The answer is that which governed Yeshua Himself when He walked through the Land to glorify His Father in Heaven: to love and to do righteousness, and to hate and to stop sinning. (Ps. 45:7; Lk 1:73-75; Heb. 1:8-9)
–We are to be meek and lowly in heart.
–We are to love the brethren, even love our enemies.
–We are to overcome evil with good.
–We are to be honest in word and deed.
–We are to be compassionate towards the poor and needy amongst us.
–We ought to walk in a manner worthy of our redemption, of being called children of the God of glory, worthy of the sure hope we have as a promise from God. (Lev. 11:45; 19:35; 22:35-38; 26:13; Deut. 16:3; Lk 6:27-49)
This we can do only in the power of the Holy Spirit by forgetting ourselves and looking and thinking upon Him, who was crucified and is now risen in exaltation; by counting all things loss, not simply because of our deliverance, but because of the excellency of Him whom the Father has sent and received again, the Lord Jesus Christ!
He who knew no sin (unleavened bread) was made sin (leavened bread) for us that we should become the righteousness (unleavened bread) of God in Him!
Scripture Reading: Rom. 12:1-2 [Mk. 9:49-50] “Present ourselves as living sacrifices (whole burnt with new meal) to God. . . and be transformed by the renewing of our minds. . . .”
The appointed times of YHVH are fulfilled in Messiah, to be observed in reality throughout all generations. Amen.
Feed on Messiah, the Lamb of God, slain for our redemption and for the glory of God!