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  • Writer's pictureJoseph A. Bias

Holy Week – The Message of Passover


“And it shall be, when your children say to you, “What do you mean by this service?’ that you shall say, “It is the Passover sacrifice of the LORD, who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt when He struck the Egyptians and delivered our households.’ ” Exodus 12: 26-27

 

Passover holds great significance for every believer in Jesus Christ. Traditionally, in most churches, Holy Week observances focus primarily on the events leading up to Jesus’ death on the cross on Good Friday, and His Resurrection from the dead three days later on Resurrection Day, (Easter).

 

Though commonly called Easter, associating Jesus’ Resurrection with a pagan holiday honoring Eostre, an Anglo-Saxon goddess of Spring whose festival is attached to the vernal equinox has become a longstanding tradition in the western world. Easter bunnies laying eggs and distributing for children to find on Easter Sunday may be benign on its face but the true meaning of Easter clearly has no association whatsoever to that practice. Most Christians acknowledge this. But little is known about the profound significance of Passover in the life and ministry of Jesus.

 

Without a clear understanding of Passover, the whole point of Jesus’ death can be lost in religious traditions. Passover was established by God as a means of reminding Israel year to year from generation to generation what God did in delivering them from the bondage of slavery in Egypt. Particularly it harkens back to the night when the plague of death came over all Egypt to slay the first born of every household that did not have the blood of a spotless lamb springled on their door post and lentils.  On that night death passed through all the nation, but where the blood was applied; to that house and its inhabitants, death passed over, and all in those houses that night were saved. Not just any who were members of those households, but only those who were in the house at the time when death passed over.  If any of Israel were caught outside unaware or unbelieving  they also died.

 

All those events pointed to the time when the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ, would come to take away the sins of the world through His shed blood on the cross. Jesus is our Passover sacrifice Lamb. By His blood we are saved from sin and death. For the wages of sin. Is death, and we all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. But through God’s love for us we have been marked with the blood of Jesus Christ, our Lord, and by His blood our sins are forgiven and a new spirit has been birthed in us. In Him we have become new creations. The law of sin and death has no claim on us anymore forever.

 

Passover’s message to us is that death is coming to claim his own, but we who have been marked with the blood of Jesus through the miracle of new birth, have nothing to fear in death because in Jesus Christ our Lord death has been defeated.

 

So now, as new creations in Christ Jesus, in this season of Passover we remember our Lord’s suffering and death that He endured for us. We remember that we were once sinners, condemned and estranged from the covenants of promise. We remember that Passover was first provided for the Jews and that through them God brought us His Son, the Savior who would save the world from sin.

 

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. John 3:16-17

 

Our salvation was bought with a price greater than the wealth of all creation. All the riches of all the worlds in all the stars, planets, galaxies and entities of space cannot even come close to the value and worth of Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Now imagine this! Jesus willingly paid that price for you and me so that we could not only call Him our Lord and Savior and King, but also our brother and friend.   He is that friend that sticks closer than a brother, the friend who by His greater love laid down His life for us.

 

Take some time this week to look more deeply into the feast of Passover and find how Jesus is revealed in every part of it.

 

May the Spirit of God attend you this Passover with good health, strength, peace and wellbeing in all things.  May He give you a deeper awareness of His presence, His Love, His Grace, His Wisdom and Understanding, His Calling in your life, and the power of the Holy Spirit working in you to be His witness to those in your life, near and far.  Shalom, Shalom!

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