Between Passover and Pentecost
“For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you: that the Lord Jesus on the same night in which He was betrayed took bread; and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, 'Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me.' In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, 'This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.' For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death till He comes. 1 Corinthians 11:23-26
Passover begins on March 27 and Pentecost occurs this year on May 23. We observe the season of Lent as a time of preparation leading up to Holy Week between Palm Sunday and Resurrection Day.
The observance of Passover was established at a time when Israel was in Egypt suffering under cruel bondage and slavery imposed on them by the Pharaoh, Ramses, who did not know of Joseph, the Jew who had saved Egypt from death during 7 years of famine and drought 400 years earlier. When Moses was sent by God to deliver His people from their hard bondage and cruelty, Ramses, hardened his heart against the Jews (Israel) and increased their burden. So God sent 10 plagues against Ramses and the Egyptians to show them His power and authority and the futility of their idols and false gods. The last plague was the plague of death, where all the first born of the nation who did not have the blood of a spotless lamb sprinkled on the door posts and lintels of their houses, would die. Only then did Pharaoh release the people of God to be freed from Egypt.
On the night of this final plague God instructed Mosses to tell the people of every household of Israel to prepare a meal of unleavened bread, also called the bread of haste, made without yeast and the flesh of the roasted Lamb, whose blood was used to paint their lentils and doorposts. This 1 year old lamb would be chosen from their flocks, a sheep or a goat, and slaughtered in the morning. They were to then take some of the blood of the Lamb and sprinkle it on the doorposts and lintels of the house where they would eat the meal of roasted lamb, unleavened bread and bitter herbs.
And God said to Moses to tell the people that on the evening when He would pass throughout all Egypt to strike the first born dead of all the Egyptians He would see the blood on the houses of the people of Israel and He would pass over them. This was the beginning of Passover. Because of the blood of a spotless lamb painted on the doorposts and lentils of their houses, the first born of all those inside escaped the judgment of God.
Now it was during the Holy night of Passover that Jesus assembled with His disciples in the Upper Room to eat the Passover meal of unleavened bread roasted lamb and bitter herbs. By this time a tradition had been established that the Passover meal would consist of several components each spoken and responded to by those engaged in the meal. But on that night, that Passover, on the night in which HE would be betrayed, He took bread and he blessed it and broke it and gave it to His disciples and said to them, “Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” In the same manner after supper Jesus also took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.”
It was during this day of Passover, that Jesus, like the spotless lamb of that first Passover, was crucified and His blood was shed to pay the sin price of death for all mankind, past, present and future. All those whose hearts are stained with His blood have been delivered from the curse of the Law which is death. Everyone who believes in Him alone for salvation will be saved and will have eternal life.
Passover is the observance that points to Jesus who is THE Agnus Dei qui tolis peccata mundi, THE Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.
Then came the morning, the day of His resurrection from the dead, the day when death, hell and the grave were defeated. We celebrate Resurrection Day as Easter Sunday in the nations, states, cities towns and villages, everywhere the people of God gather to worship Him. And we will worship Him freely, openly, fearlessly and unapologetically, in Spirit and in truth, declaring His Name, and the Good News of the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. To Him be all glory, honor, majesty, dominion and power now and for evermore. Amen.
Now after His resurrection Jesus appeared to over 500 people who were eyewitnesses of His death and His resurrection. Finally, appearing to the disciples before He ascended into Heaven, He instructed them to go into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature, baptizing them in the name of The Father, and of The Son, and of The Holy Spirit. But, before they went out to preach He told them to stay in Jerusalem until they received power from on high. Then, they would be His witnesses in every city, beginning in Jerusalem and then, the surrounding regions and then, to the uttermost parts of the world.
Thus it was, that on the Day of Pentecost, 40 days after His ascension, and 50 days after the resurrection, the Holy Spirit came to dwell upon and dwell in the disciples gathered in the Upper Room. In that moment there came into that room, suddenly, a rushing mighty wind, and flaming tongues of fire sat upon them all, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.
As they did, they came out into the streets where Jews were gathered from every corner of the Middle Eastern world and all those who had gathered there in Jerusalem that day, heard these unlearned Galileans speaking to them, each in their unique and varied languages, the wonderful works of God. From that day the Church has been proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ and souls have been saved from every tribe and tongue, and every people and nation.
There are no Higher or more Holy Days to the Church, to every believer in Jesus Christ, than Passover, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Resurrection Day, (Easter) and Pentecost. Let us, therefore, do all that we can to make these celebrations this year and every year, the greatest we can, to the Glory of our Risen Lord, Jesus Christ.
Passover – Saturday March 27 – Sunday, April 4
Maundy (Commandment) Thursday, April 1
Good Friday – Friday, April 2
Resurrection Day - Easter – Sunday, April 4
Ascension – Thursday May 13
Pentecost – Sunday, May 23