I’ve written before re the Leviticus 23 admonitions, encouragements, and heavenly warnings that specifically accompany some though not all of the Lev-23-listed Hebrew holidays. I am addressing the upcoming Passover, one of those holy-days where “forever”, “everlasting”, and “all generations” is emphatically cited.
….it shall be a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.
(ALSO) Exodus 12:14
So this day shall be to you a memorial; and you shall keep it as a feast to the LORD throughout your generations. You shall keep it as a feast by an everlasting ordinance.
FYI – OTHER “FOREVER” Holidays:
Yom Kippur/Day Of Atonement – Leviticus 23:30-31
Tabernacles/Sukkot – Leviticus 23:41
We would do well to recognize that the same (one and only) God who describes the crucifixion of our Savior as having been planned even earlier-than-time-itself (before the foundation of the world) also (in Lev 23) told us to observe those holidays forever, and knowing what He knew re the timing of the first appearance of Messiah and His crucifixion, did not time-limit those observances until the Mosaic covenant was to be fulfilled.
NT Proof-Text: In foretelling the work of satan via the antichrist, in John’s Revelation we are also told of WHEN the plan for salvation was formulated:
8 All who dwell on the earth will worship him (that is: the antichrist), whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
9 If anyone has an ear, let him hear. (v 9 is calling out to us to hear)
Let’s have ears to spiritually hear that God, speaking thousands of years earlier in Leviticus, already knew of the New Covenant that would be activated by the crucifixion work, and purposely told us that certain holidays ought to be observed FOREVER. Do the calendar math, Church. “Forever” includes now.
A good question for us might be: WHY those particular holidays? For this writing, let’s just address Passover, and particularly, the one upcoming this year, in these shaking and troublesome days. 2020 – four hundred years since the first covenant of our forefathers aboard the Mayflower. A most timely anniversary.
PASSOVER – the holiday meal and festival during which our Lord, as the ultimate Lamb, initiated Communion.
Passover is about remembrance.
Communion is about remembrance.
Both are about remembrance of events, and most importantly remembrance of a God who is:
A. Loving and offering forgiveness through repentance, and simultaneously
B. Mighty, righteous, working on behalf of His covenant people, and also judging wickedness on earth. (Ask the Egyptian army about God’s judgment. Fathers, husbands, sons and brothers can be found at the bottom of the Red Sea). This is the whole gospel story.
Jer 9:23-24 confirms the activity and personality of our God, for your reference, and tells us we can rejoice in knowing and understanding Him, in His fullness.
The Jewish Passover tradition of asking questions (classically referred to as The Four Questions) commences with a blanket question: “Why is this night different from all other nights?” is a very Fair question because the traditions of the Passover meal happen to prescribe some unusual observances: what is eaten, how people recline to eat, how the meal takes its course, a prophetic “search” for a pierced and striped middle, broken and unleavened piece of bread, an extra table setting for Elijah who is to come (read the last few verses of Malachi if you will).
The whole point of the anointed “weird meal” is to purposely incite questions – particularly from the young ones – as to why on earth is this meal so strange, so unique. Those are Four, Fair questions deserving faith-filled answers, to serve up new or revived measures faith to the participants. And we can all use fullness of faith in these times.
The admonition to observe Passover is for that blessing, for our remembrance, so that hearts do not fail WHEN (not IF) the people of God find themselves in the impossible. Welcome to 2020, church. Welcome to 2020, synagogue.
The church can choose to play the “we’re under grace” card if we like and ascribe Passover to the Jews, but I don’t believe it is to the benefit of the church. To our benefit is to understand that God has provided everything necessary for life, and faith, and success, and His provision includes admonition and invitation to intentional recounting of His former activity, including even the “politically incorrect” destruction of the wicked, so that an anointed recount might result in what is soberly taken into the spirits and minds of any and all who would hear.
Don’t miss the blessing of the Passover remembrance.
All these things that are occurring, right now, in these particular days and according to His calendar, is for His glory and also for our safety and success. His shaking work is to activate the harvest. THAT is the biblical storyline. These are prophesied in Daniel as being days of great exploits by one who knows their God.
Wednesday April 8 is the beginning of Passover this year.
How to observe Passover is not specifically line by line described in the scriptures, so don’t get hung up on that, nor intimidated by opinionated experts. There’s lots of Jewish tradition and much of it is very good, while some of it is folklore. The inclusion of the egg, for instance, on the Passover plate is thought by some to be a superstitious inclusion of a symbol of fertility, not unlike the Easter bunny. Find your way prayerfully through the seder event. You will be blessed. Egg or no egg, you’ll do quite fine. If more than four questions come up, address them. Enjoy the life of your Seder.
During the days of Hezekiah (2 Kings 30) we’re told the lay folks offered the sacrifice because the priests didn’t quite have it together, and then they were so overwhelmed by the event they added an extra week of observance!. And King Josiah’s Passover celebration was thoroughly over the top as well (2 Chron 35) – so don’t panic over accuracy – rejoice in the holiday observance understanding God loves that observance and will breathe on your efforts.
If you research SEDER (“order”) or HAGGADAH (the book of telling of events), you will eventually reach the conclusion that the concept of “SEDER” (“order”) is sort of like the Italian dessert Tiramisu – each family has their own specific recipe. The anointed intent of the Seder is the remembrance and the retelling of the story of deliverance by our faithful God. We needn’t get hamstrung by rules that are not specified in the Lord’s word. Again, the enjoy the life of your Seder.
If you are a believer in Jesus/Y’shua, there’s lots of seder recommendations online that correspond to your faith and understanding.
If you are a Jew still unconvinced of Y’Shua’s Messiah position, I am so sorry about that and I recommend you’d simply pray and ask the God of Abraham, Isaac and Joseph, your God, whether or not Y’Shua might just be your one and only Savior. And while you are it read Isaiah 53 and Zechariah 12:10. Both of those good Jewish prophets spoke and continue to speak eternal truth. I’ll post the Zechariah verse for you:
10 “And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on Me whom they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn.
(All scripture NKJV version)
One more BTW: I do not omit the middle letter “O” from “GOD” because that too is religious superstition. The commandment to not use the Lord’s name in vain is accurate, alive, and well. I am not using His name in vain. I am using it in reverence. Our God reigns.