FESTIVAL OF UNLEAVENED BREAD

Also known as PASSOVER

by Roger Hathaway, April 17, 2011

(Revised and updated February 26, 2012)

 

        The FIRST PASSOVER was in Egypt, prior to the Exodus which was led by Moses, when the blood of a lamb on the doorposts and lintel saved the Israelites from the angel of death. This event served also as a prophecy of Jesus - Lamb - Blood - Savior.

        The SECOND PASSOVER was at Calvary, at the crucifixion of Jesus, when the blood of a Lamb saved the Israel family from the death-penalty consequence of their breach-of-covenant.

        The THIRD PASSOVER is at the end of the 12,000 year Kingdom of World, when the blood of Christ-family will Liberate God's Offspring from world "life" to  Life during the ages of the Kingdom of Heaven.

        The lesson of "Blood" is simply that blood is the price of eternal (means "during ages") Life because earthly flesh cannot inherit the kingdom of God, so we must be willing and eager to leave our flesh and blood behind. Those who fear death and cling to this world will be culled from God's flock. Jesus' blood accomplished two things; it (the unblemished, perfect Lamb) freed us from the death penalty we had earned by our breach of contract, and secondly, it showed the path of Liberation for any who would follow Him. The Blood lesson of Martyrdom is the most important lesson of the Bible, to offer our bodies as Living Sacrifices unto death.

        The Egypt Passover served as prophetic of the blood of the Lamb, Jesus. Both those events are then prophetic of the end-time event when the World civilization is destroyed and God's Elect will be saved to found the new Kingdom of Heaven. As we commemorate the two previous Passovers, we see them as models in order that each of us might honor God's command to keep this Feast of Unleavened Bread as a perpetual ordinance forever, a time to reject the leaven of World and to follow our Liberator through death unto Life with Him. While the Christian Church does not honor this important event, each of us might personally read the passages and commemorate it meaningfully.

 

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FRIDAY, MARCH 30, 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT     [9th day of First Month of the year, following Vernal Equinox]

EXODUS 12:1  "The Lord spake to Moses & Aaron in the land of Egypt saying, ĎThis month shall be to you the beginning of months; it is the first to you of the months of the year. Speak to all the children of Israel, saying,"

[Sidenote: It seems that God is emphasizing the importance of a calendrical starting point, perhaps the start of a cycle or of an age. The implication might be that this vernal equinox of this year should be honored as a datum of reference for future generations. See the Appendix at end of this article for further discussion of DATE OF EXODUS]

JESUSí PASSION:

Jesus arrives in Bethany, about two miles from Jerusalem, where He is anointed with oil by Mary while visiting in the home of her brother, Lazarus, and sister, Martha. (John 12:2-8; Mat. 26:6-13; Mark 14:3-9) "Then, six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus was who had been dead, whom He had raised from the dead. There they made Him a supper; and Martha served, but Lazarus was one of those who sat at the table with Him. Then Mary took a pound of very costly oil of spikenard, anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair." (John 12:2-8)

        Both Matthew and Mark place Jesus at the home of Simon the Leper in Bethany rather than at the home of Lazarus. I prefer Johnís account because it is somewhat likely that the Gospel of John was actually written by Lazarus, who might be that person "whom Jesus loved most."

COMMEMORATION 2012

Vernal Equinox starts the first day of the first month of a year, anointed so by God.

2012 V.E. is March 20 at 12:14am EST.  So, this year the 9th day of 1st Mo. would be March 29, 2012 - technically only; other factors may adjust the virtual date relative to Easter Sunday.

 

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SATURDAY, MARCH 31, 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT   [10th day of First Month] 

EX 12:3 "On the tenth of this month, let them take each man a lamb according to the houses of their families, every man a lamb for his household. And if they be few in a household, not enough for the lamb, he shall join with his neighbor who lives near to him - as to the number of souls to suffice to make reckoning for the lamb. It shall be unblemished, a year old; take it from the lambs or the kids. And it shall be kept by you till the 14th of the month. . ." (which is the day of the Passover.)

JESUSí PASSION:

Entry into Jerusalem. Celebrated as "Palm Sunday" in Christian religion. It was the day of bringing a lamb to the location where it would be sacrificed for the Passover evening meal. (Ex 12:7) Here it is that Jesus arrives at Jerusalem as God's Lamb. (John 12:12-50)

COMMEMORATION 2012

Get the lamb which will be used for the Passover meal. Bring it to the place where the meal will be eaten and keep it alive until next Wednesday. You might buy a package of lamb from the market, since hardly anyone has access to a live lamb or the means of processing it. Put it in the freezer until next Wednesday morning.

 

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SUNDAY, APRIL 1, 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT   [11th day of First Month] 

EX 11:2  "Lord said to Moses: 'Speak secretly in the ears of the people, and let every one ask of his neighbor jewels of silver and gold and raiment. And the Lord gave his people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, and they lent to them;'"

JESUSí PASSION

Jesus goes to the Jerusalem Temple. He cleanses it of the Edomite Jewish Bankers. We might pray that Jesus will fulfill this prophecy now, in Europe and America, by cleansing from us that great usurious Beast which exploits, merchandises, and oppresses the Temple of God today. (Mat 21:12,13; Mark 11:15-17; Luke 19:45,46) He does healings in temple Mat 21:14)

COMMEMORATION 2012

We white race Europeans are the Temple of the Living God. Just as in old Jerusalem, we have been conquered by the Edomite Jews. Our ancestors should not have permitted their enslavement to happen in Egypt, nor again during those Herodian years prior to Jesus' birth, and we should not have let it happen in Europe and America. Now, we need God's hand to overturn the Edomites' wicked dominion.  Perhaps we can use this day for our own spiritual Cleansing, Repentance, and Healing in Preparation for our own Passion experiences.

 

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MONDAY, APRIL 2, 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT  [12th day of First Month] 

We might assume that our Israelite ancestors were using these days to make plans for their escape from Egypt, their Liberation, what they can carry and what to leave behind. Busy days of preparation before they follow their Liberator from their World to an unknown future. Certainly prayers for a willingness to yield themselves to the path which God will offer them. They had been in Egypt four hundred years, and now excited to be Liberated from there.

JESUSí PASSION

Jesus curses fig tree (Mat. 21:18-20; Mark 11:12-21). Jesus' authority is questioned. Parables of two sons, wicked tenants, and king's son. Question of tax money. Sadducee's question. Great commandment. Woes pronounced against Pharisees. Widow's offering. (See Mat. 21:18 - 26:16; Mark 11:27 - 14:11; Luke 20:1 - 22:6; John 12:20 - 50) It isnít known where to divide the events on Monday from those on Tuesday.

COMMEMORATION 2012  Perhaps a day to study Godís Word. Like those in ancient Egypt, our family has been in America four hundred years, with increasing oppression. We have been promised a Liberator to soon lead us from this World to Heaven; we should be excited to follow Him.

 

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TUESDAY, APRIL 3, 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT  [13th day of First Month] 

We might assume that our Israelite ancestors were using these days to make plans for their escape from Egypt, their Liberation, what they can carry and what to leave behind. Busy days of preparation before they follow their Liberator from their World to an unknown future. Certainly prayers for a willingness to yield themselves to the path which God will offer them.

JESUSí PASSION

Discourses and prophecies of end-times (Mat 24). Parable of ten virgins. Parable of ten talents. Discourse about Judgment day.

(See Mat. 21:18 - 26:16; Mark 11:27 - 14:11; Luke 20:1 - 22:6; John 12:20 - 50)

COMMEMORATION 2012

Perhaps a day to consider the reality of our end time Liberation.

 

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WEDNESDAY, APRIL 4, 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT   [14th day of First Month & 1st day of Unleavened Bread Festival from this eve till next eve]

EX 12:6 "And it shall be kept by you till the 14th of this month, and all the multitude of the congregation of the children of Israel shall kill it toward evening. And they shall take of the blood, and shall put it on the two door-posts, and on the lintel, in the houses in which soever they shall eat them. And they shall eat the flesh in this night, roasted with fire, and they shall eat unleavened bread with bitter herbs. Ye shall not eat it raw nor boiled in water, but only roast by fire, the head, feet, and all parts. Nothing shall be left of it till morning and a bone of it ye shall not break, but that which is left till morning ye shall burn with fire.

        "And thus shall ye eat it, your loins girded, sandals on your feet, and staves in your hands; ye shall eat it in haste. It is a Passover to the Lord.

        "And I will go thru the land of Egypt that night and will smite every firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast, and on all the gods of Egypt I will execute vengeance. I am the Lord. And the blood shall be a sign to you on the houses in which ye are, and I will see the blood, and will protect you, and there shall not be on you the plague of destruction, when I smite the land of Egypt."

 

EX 12:18 "Beginning the 14th day of the first month, ye shall eat unleavened bread from evening, till the twenty-first day of the month, till evening. For seven days leaven shall not be found in your houses; whosoever shall eat anything leavened, that soul shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel, both among the occupiers of the land and the original inhabitants. Ye shall eat nothing leavened, but in every habitation of yours ye shall eat unleavened bread."

 

EX 12:31 "And Pharao called Moses and Aaron by night, and said to them, Rise and depart from my people, both ye and the children of Israel; Go and serve the Lord your God, even as ye say."

        After the meal, the wailing begins; there is no sleep this night while the angel of death wreaks vengeance against those oppressors who have abused and exploited God's Israel family. Godís people prepare to flee. During the night, after death has passed over them, the Israelites were probably excited and joyous as they moved their flocks and herds onto the trail.

        EX 12:41 "And it came to pass after the four hundred and thirty years, all the forces of the Lord came forth out of the land of Egypt by night. It is a watch kept to the Lord, so that he should bring them out of the land of Egypt; that very night is a watch kept to the Lord, so that it should be to all the children of Israel to their generations." (See Appendix, note 2 "Forever")

EX 13:7 "Seven days shall ye eat unleavened bread; nothing leavened shall be seen with thee, neither shalt thou have leaven in all thy borders."

JESUSí PASSION

PASSOVER: (a HIGH SABBATH) First day (starts Wed. evening) of Passover, the beginning of a seven day Festival of Unleavened Bread. While Passover itself was a single day event, this entire seven-day festival is also loosely called Passover. The Passover meal is eaten this evening. It was this meal that Christians know as Jesus' Last Supper. (Mat. 26:17-21; See also Mark 14:12-16 & Luke 22:7-13; and John, chapters 13 - 17)

        Gethsemane Passover Vigil begins. 9pm?: After the meal, Jesus and His disciples went to the garden of Gethsemane on the Mount of Olives. (Mat. 26:36-56; Mark 14:32-52; Luke 22:39-51; John 18:1-13)

       It could be beneficial to our spiritual understanding if Christians today commemorated our Lord's Passover on Wednesday evening with a meal of lamb, unleavened bread, wine, and with some cooked greens (perhaps turnip, spinach, dandelion). The juice of the cooked greens can be the sop into which the tough unleavened flat sheets of bread can be dipped. After the meal, we could maintain a Vigil for at least a portion of the night if not all night. The Passover Vigil was kept through ancient times, and it was that vigil which Jesus was keeping in Gethsemane. Some of the earliest Christians, after Jesus' death, replaced the Passover ritual with the common meal (pot-luck) where they acknowledged the bread as Jesus' body and the wine as His blood. Later, the organized church took this meal away from the people and made it a sacrament: bread for the people, wine for the priests. But, for common Christians, today Communion has the same meaning as the ancient Passover Feast.

COMMEMORATION 2012   

First day of Unleavened Bread Festival of Seven full days, until next Wednesday evening.

EX 12:14 "And that day shall be to you a memorial, and ye shall keep it a feast to the Lord thru all your generations; ye shall keep it a feast for a perpetual ordinance. Seven days ye shall eat unleavened bread, and from the 1st day ye shall utterly remove leaven from your homes. Whoever shall eat leaven, from the first day to the seventh day, that soul shall be utterly destroyed from Israel.

Call this day HOLY. Ex 12:16 The first day shall be called Holy, and the seventh day shall be called holy; ye shall do no servile work, only those things necessary to be done by everyone: this only shall be done by you."

Unleavened bread was daily, from evening of this day till evening of 7th full day of festival (next Wednesday eve) Ex 12:18. God stressed that there be no leaven in the house: yeast, bread, pastries. Today, this seven-day ritual is no longer required (See "FOREVER"), but we can at least review our important history and apply its meaning to our end-time Passover. Prepare yourself to leave Egypt (World) behind as you follow your Liberator to your destiny. A spiritual preparation.

While God exacts vengeance upon the World, you are being spared because of your willingness to leave your blood behind.

 

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THURSDAY, APRIL 5, 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT  [15th day of First Month & 2nd day of Unleavened Bread Festival from this eve till next eve]

EX 12:14 "And that day shall be to you a memorial, and ye shall keep it a feast to the Lord thru all your generations; ye shall keep it a feast for a perpetual ordinance. Seven days ye shall eat unleavened bread, and from the 1st day ye shall utterly remove leaven from your homes. Whoever shall eat leaven, from the first day to the seventh day, that soul shall be utterly destroyed from Israel.

JESUSí PASSION

DAY OF TRIALS. Sometime after Wednesday midnight, in the early morning hours of Thursday, Jesus was arrested and taken first to trial at Annas's house, perhaps 6am?, then to the high priest Caiaphas, priests & Council, perhaps 7am? then to the governor, Pilate, perhaps 9am? then to Herod for a brief time perhaps at 11am? then back to Pilate, it was then about noon according to Jn 19:14. Pilate tried to release him, unsuccessfully. Jesus was then turned over to the soldiers who tormented him further during the afternoon. He was held overnight, perhaps in cave-type jail cell which makes this His first night in the heart of the earth. (Mat 26:57 - 27:33; Mark 14:53 - 15:22; Luke 22:54 - 23:26; John 18:13 - 19:17)

COMMEMORATION 2012

Your worldly trials will lead to your Liberation.

 

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FRIDAY, APRIL 6, 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT   [16th day of First Month & 3rd day of Unleavened Bread Festival from this eve till next eve]

EX 12:17 "Ye shall keep this commandment, for on this day I will bring your force out of the land of Egypt; and ye shall make this day a perpetual ordinance for you throughout your generations."   (See Appendix, note 2 "Forever")

EX 12:28 "And the children of Israel departed and did as the Lord commanded Moses and Aaron, so did they.

JESUSí PASSION

GOLGOTHA/CRUCIFIXION.  By 9am  Jesus had been led to Golgotha where He was crucified. At noon the sky went dark, lasting until 3pm, when Jesus finally died. Since Friday was considered a day of Preparation (preparing for the next day sabbath), it was necessary to get Jesus off the cross and into a tomb by 6pm  where proper wrapping with spices would have to be delayed until after the sabbath. (Mat 27; Mark 15; Luke 23; John 19)

COMMEMORATION 2012

God's Friday, the Crucifixion of God's Son: His Anointed Offspring, His Christ family. Here is the path which Jesus demonstrated as the only means of Liberation from an oppressive Egypt/World; one must die and leave the flesh behind because "flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of Heaven."  Many millions of our European ancestors went willingly, some eagerly, to tortured deaths in order to follow their Lord. Never forget this fact: Death is a door which opens, not one that closes. It is our goal, our glorious Liberation.

 

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SATURDAY, APRIL 7, 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT  [17th day of First Month & 4th day of Unleavened Bread Festival from this eve till next eve]

Over a million Israelites are on the trail, following Moses, toward the shore of the Red Sea.

JESUSí PASSION

A Regular Sabbath, also considered a Great Sabbath because it is within the Unleavened Feast period. No one went to the tomb, or did any work on this day. (Mat. 27:62-64)

COMMEMORATION 2012

For one who observes the full seven-day ritual, still eat unleavened bread.

 

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SUNDAY, APRIL 8, 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT   [18th day of First Month & 5th day of Unleavened Bread Festival from this eve till next eve]

EX 14:13 "And Moses said to the people, Be of good courage: stand and see the salvation which is from the Lord, which he will work for us this day; for as ye have seen the Egyptians today, ye shall see them no more forever. The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace."

EX 14:30 "So the Lord delivered Israel in that day from the hand of the Egyptians and Israel saw the Egyptians dead by the shore of the sea. And Israel saw the mighty hand, the things which Lord did to the Egyptians; and the people feared the Lord, and they believed God and Moses his servant.  Then sang Moses and the children of Israel this song to God, and spoke, saying, Let us sing to the Lord, for he is very greatly glorified; horse and rider he has thrown into the sea. He was to me a helper and protector for salvation: this is my God, and I will glorify him; my father's God, and I will exalt him. The Lord bringing wars to nought, the Lord is his name."

EX 15:13 "Thou hast guided in Thy righteousness this Thy people whom Thou hast redeemed; by Thy strength Thou hast called them into Thy holy resting place. . .(v17)Bring them in and plant them in the mountain of their inheritance, in Thy prepared habitation, which Thou, O Lord, hast prepared; the sanctuary, O Lord, which thine hands have made ready. The Lord reigns for ever and ever."

JESUSí PASSION

RESURRECTION. perhaps 6am?  Here is the victorious fulfillment of the Passover prophetic model. It is this Passover fulfillment, the blood of Jesus which saves His Family from eternal death, the messianic hope of ancient Hebrews, that Christians celebrate as Easter. The Passover is still being celebrated, as God requested, by Christians who call it "Easter." It is this event that Christians hold most important, above all others, in our religion. (Mat 28; Mark 16; Luke 24; John 20) We shall ARISE to a new freedom, a Liberation from this World (Egypt) unto a new kingdom, which is not of material limitation but of Heaven. That Sunday evening, Jesus appeared to His group who had gathered in a room behind closed doors; He breathed on them and said, "Receive the Holy Spirit."

COMMEMORATION 2012    Are we ready to sing a new song unto the Lord, asking Him to destroy a World which has been our oppressor and His enemy? Are we ready to follow Jesus thru that open door, leaving all which we have known behind us, to dance our way joyfully into a new reality? On this Resurrection Day, are these the thoughts to contemplate? Does not His Resurrection become our Resurrection? Shall we become One with Him just as He is One with the Father, as He prayed in John 17? Shall we now prepare our hearts, minds, and spirits for our own Resurrection? O Glorious Day of the Lord!

 

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MONDAY, APRIL 9, 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT  [19th day of First Month & 6th day of Unleavened Bread Festival from this eve till next eve]

Following their Liberation from Egypt (symbol of World) the large family, about 600,000 men plus women and children, found itself alone in a desert wilderness (symbol of spiritual destitution) where it had no choice except to trust in God for sustenance and survival. Many regretted leaving the security which they had known and would have gladly turned back; they were not ready to live spiritually because they had not prepared themselves. So many of our people today are trusting in stored foods and guns to resist the Liberation which looms near. They are clinging to secure homes and "things" which make worldly life comfortable. Many Israelite residents of Egypt, under the Pharao, did not leave with Moses but stayed with that which they knew and understood rather than leap into the unknown. Still at the time of Jesus there was a large Israelite population near Alexandria, Egypt. Some of them recognized their true Shepherd and claimed Him. They had collected Old Testament scriptures in their Coptic language. Some of their materials were buried near Nag Hammadi and were discovered in 1948 as what came to be called the Gnostic Gospels. Some of these writings are surely valid Gospels, preserved from the Roman Catholic attempts to destroy them. See GNOSTIC GOSPELS.

JESUSí PASSION

We are reminded that Jesus' ministry began about three and a half years prior to His crucifixion. Following His Resurrection, there was a three and a half year period during which the new "Christians" struggled to make sense of their new situation, to gather in groups for discussion and worship, to make contact with neighboring groups in distant towns, and to deal with the threat of persecution which was just beginning. Since Jesus made no suggestion or hint of establishing a new religion, the first three centuries were arguments about what should be done. After Constantine, as Edomite Jews became Christians, they took over leadership and led Jesus' followers into a religion of hierarchical structure of levels of authority while replicating their ancient Mother-Goddess religion of Paganism under the Christian banner. The real spiritual significance of Passover, the Crucifixion, and Resurrection has not been preached since.

COMMEMORATION 2012

The Liberation from Egypt did not end the difficult time of food supply. Rather, their "wilderness period" was just beginning. The unleavened bread, for the 3 1/2 days following Resurrection, reminds us that there will be such a difficult wilderness period following our Liberation from this Kingdom of World, after the magnetic-field reversal when volcanic ash covers most of the earth and we must begin to found a new kingdom of Heaven, totally dependent on God for providence and guidance.

 

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TUESDAY, APRIL 10, 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT   [20th day of First Month & 7th day of Unleavened Bread Festival from this eve till next eve]

Notes for this day, the same as yesterday, Monday.

JESUSí PASSION

Notes for this day, the same as yesterday, Monday.

COMMEMORATION 2012

 

 

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WEDNESDAY, APRIL 11 2012

EXODUS FROM EGYPT   [21st day of First Month & 7th day of Unleavened Bread Festival ends this eve]

12:16 The first day shall be called Holy, and the seventh day shall be called holy; ye shall do no servile work, only those things necessary to be done by everyone: this only shall be done by you."

JESUSí PASSION

Notes for this day, the same as Monday.

COMMEMORATION 2012

This Wednesday evening completes a Commemoration of an ordinance which God had commanded. You have contemplated the paradigm (model) of God's plan and you have considered two historical experiences of that model. Perhaps this annual reminder of His plan will enable you/us to go-with-the-flow and yield to His terribly dramatic end-time events which have already begun. Our world will experience devastation, death, and grief beyond anything ever experienced before. How will each of us handle what is coming? Will our hearts fail us because of fear? Will we hide in caves or shelters praying for them to collapse on us? Or will we clutch a copy of Psalm 91 to our breasts and trust in His promises, happy to be taken from this World if He so wills it. Since most of us will probably perish in the catastrophic events, will we welcome that as a Liberation? If armed thugs or foreign soldiers assault our homes to kill us, will we welcome them as Liberators or will we resist?

        The time is upon us to face the REALITY of God's plan and decide what to do. What a great blessing it is for us to have some historical scriptures which can help to prepare us for what lies ahead. If we didn't have the models of Egypt Liberation and Jesus Crucifixion and Resurrection, these end-time events would simply overwhelm us; we would die in ignorance and terror. With our scriptures, we know what to expect and we know that ours will be the victory. We are about to inherit that great Vineyard which He has prepared for us. Was it not that very HOPE which gave the martyrs the strength and gladness to sing praises to our God while they were being Liberated at the burning stakes? See FOLLOW ME for a discussion of martyrdom.

        The end of our oppression has arrived. We shall follow Him who showed us the right Path. And we shall do it with hearts and voices bursting with songs of Praise! The prison door is about to be opened and we shall be Liberated.

 



FESTIVAL OF PASSOVER for those who do the Wednesday evening Passover meal. You might read this before the meal.

This Festival of Passover is not a party of good drinks and food; it is a serious moment when we remember the desperate escape of Israelites from Egypt. The meal was eaten in haste because they were prepared to dash off in the dark to escape from their Egyptian oppressors.

God instructed His children in some detail just how they should prepare for that departure. The meal would be prepared hastily with no frills. The lamb would be slaughtered and roasted whole without breaking any bones. The bread would be made without any yeast because there was not time for yeast to make a fluffy bread pleasant to eat. They were told to eat the meal while holding their walking sticks in one hand, as though ready to flee. They were told to smear some lamb-blood on their door posts and above the doorway on the lintel so that the angel of death would pass over their houses when he went through Egypt that night killing all the eldest sons. After their meal, all leftovers were to be burned. Late that night, the wailing began as firstborn sons dropped dead in all the homes where no blood indicated they should be passed over. Then, while it was still night, more than a million Israelites left their homes and their belongings to follow Moses to some unknown place. Then God instructed Moses that the Israelite family should commemorate this great event every year, perpetually, to the end of the age. It was the most important lesson they could learn for it meant their Liberation from this World. Egypt is always a symbol of World. And Blood is the key to the exit door from World.

When Jesus commemorated the Passover in the Upper Room, His group did it as a sit-down meal with plenty of time for conversation. They spent several hours at it. They had bread which was surely unleavened because God commanded it to be. The Passover meal on that Wednesday evening began a seven day commemoration, called the Festival of Unleavened Bread. God had commanded that unyeasted bread be eaten every day for seven days, until the next Wednesday evening. They ate lamb at their meal, but that Wednesday evening was probably the last time some of them ever celebrated the ancient Passover event, because only a day or so later, on Friday morning, Godís own Lamb, Jesus, would be sacrificed on a cross. It would then be the blood of this Lamb which would save Godís family from eternal death and permit their Liberation from this World. Jesus' blood fulfilled the ancient event/prophecy. Following their meal, Jesus and His friends walked to a Garden at Gethsemane where they would keep the all-night Vigil which commemorated that long-ago night in Egypt when no one got any sleep because they fled in late night darkness.

The early Christian church was mixed regarding Passover commemoration. Since Jesus said that the bread and wine represented His body and blood, most of Christianity has replaced the annual Passover with a weekly or monthly celebration of Communion, which has the same meaning as the ancient Passover ritual. Christians recognize the significance of Godís Lamb, His death, and His salvation as the key to eternal Life because we are passed-over by the angel of Death. The Blood of Jesus is our salvation.

Blood! Some might wonder why God makes Blood such an important part of the Biblical teachings. It is to prepare His children for our own Liberations from this World. We are the sheep of Godís flock and we must ultimately give up our own blood in order to leave this World behind and enter the new Kingdom of Heaven. In other words, we must die. We must sacrifice our bodies to death because "flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of Heaven." As God's own children, we are Spirit Beings who must leave these worldly false bodies behind if we are to live with our Father in Heaven. After 12,000 years of World kingdom of misery, we are about to step through the exit door from this stage onto the one He has prepared for those of us who are willing and wanting to go there.

God has been teaching us, over many centuries, by having us remember the two Passovers which mean salvation to His people. Now, we are at the time of the third Passover, when most all people of the world will die and this World civilization will be ended. We must each be willing to die, for real, if we would follow the Path which Jesus has demonstrated. Those who resist death will be killed anyway, but they will not be saved. Those who look to Jesusí cross with the understanding that their death is the ticket to Heaven will be saved. The only difference between the two choices is the WILLINGNESS to suffer death in order to follow Jesus. This time it wonít be the angel of death, nor will it be crucifiers, but our Liberators will come to us with guns and bombs to kill us. It matters most how each person accepts his or her death, willingly and happily, or resisting it. Jesus went to His death willingly, and calls us to follow His example. Now, each personís decision will be the most important one he or she will ever make, whether to follow Jesus to Heaven or to cling to this world and have a miserable end.

Regarding a fear of death, I would point you to a poignant comment by Jesus, as recorded in the Aprocryphon of James, a Gospel in the Nag Hammadi collection, written by Jesus' brother, James. He says that he and other disciples were sitting together and writing down whatever they could remember about Jesus' life 550 days after the Resurrection. He says that Jesus appeared to them and answered questions which they asked. When the subject of death arose, James protested that he didn't want that spoken of.  "The Lord answered and said, "Verily I say unto you, none will be saved unless they believe in my cross. But those who have believed in my cross, theirs is the kingdom of God. Therefore, become seekers for death, like the dead who seek for life; for that which they seek is revealed to them. And what is there to trouble them? As for you, when you examine death, it will teach you election. Verily I say unto you, none of those who fear death will be saved; for the kingdom of God belongs to those who put themselves to death."

Good Friday is the time when Christians remember the sacrifice of Godís Lamb on the cross. The ancient Passover was a sort of prophecy about the death of Godís Lamb and His blood. We should keep in mind that the Bible lessons about the two Passovers were meant to prepare us for the final one which we will each experience soon.


APPENDIX:

NOTE 1:  DATE OF EXODUS as the start of a calendar period. Many scholars have attempted to determine the Exodus date, but have arrived a several different dates, from Poole's date of 1652BC to Usher's date of 1491 to Wm. Albright's estimate of 13th century BC. The Third Millenium Trust of Chippenham, England has produced an impressive wall chart of world history (copyrighted 1997) which places the Exodus at 1491BC.  Most all scholars, including Bishop Usher, use the Jewish Masoretic Text (of 1,000AD) for a research datum, but I prefer the Greek Septuagint of 286BC for study. Over the years I have revised my earlier Exodus speculation from 1458BC to 1446BC.

        When I Googled "date of exodus" in April 2011, I found an interesting study of the dating of the Exodus, in agreement with my thesis, declaring it to be 1446BC based on numerical calculations, at this link: http://www.1260-1290-days-bible-prophecy.org/1446BC-exodus-1260000-tsunami.htm

        So, I shall use the date of 1446BC Vernal Equinox as the datum for starting a new calendar period. According to our calendar system, the V.E. is usually March 21st, give or take a day.

        Jesus' birth was most likely between 7BC and 4BC. If we accept 6BC as His birth date, we might say that He was born 1440 years after Moses' Liberation (Exodux). If Jesus died (His own Liberation) at 33 years age, that would be 1473 Yr of Moses, or 27AD. And if we surmise that the Exodus Liberation started a new calendar period, then should we not likewise use the date of Jesus' Death (Liberation - 27AD) as the starting date of our Christian history? Our present year 2012AD is reckoned from a date of Jesus' birth as proposed by Dionysius Exiguus, 532AD, and brought into use at the Council of Chelsea, 816AD. Charles III of Germany was first to add the "AD" to the year, meaning "Year of our Lord" in 879AD. But, instead of using Jesus' birth as the starting date for our calendar (which is wrong anyway), we might consider using a date of "Liberation," like that ordered by God in Exodus 12:1, as a starting date. So, if Jesus' death becomes our starting date for Christian history, at 27AD, then we must subtract 27 years from 2012, making this year of 2012AD really 1985AD. Then AD could mean After Death.

        Well, this is all speculative, isn't it? And, what difference does it make? Perhaps NONE. But, it is our inquisitive nature which ever tries to make sense of something puzzling. We suspect that the great Designer of our Reality (kosmos) has established it as orderly, as mathematical, as patterned paradigms, as cyclic, and as rational. Instinctively, we want to believe that all life is not mere happenchance or random accident, but that there is an intelligence behind it. So, we feel compelled to challenge the eternal mysteries in order to solve the great puzzle. God's word does suggest such order. For instance, information in II Esdras is very pertinent to knowing the diagram of long term history. Here is the snip from II Esdras 14:6-12 -   6."These words you shall publish openly, and these you shall keep secret.' 7And now I say to you: 8.Lay up in your heart the signs that I have shown you, the dreams that you have seen, and the interpretations that you have heard; 9.for you shall be taken up from among humankind, and henceforth you shall live with my Son and with those who are like you, until the times are ended. 10.The age has lost its youth, and the times begin to grow old. 11.For the age is divided into twelve parts, and nine of its parts have already passed, 12.as well as half of the tenth part; so two of its parts remain, besides half of the tenth part."   Print out a copy of the Sine Wave diagram and you will see that God is describing the 12,000 year Kingdom of World, which began 10,000BC, which was 9,500 years prior to Ezra; and Ezra is 2,500 years prior to the end of World kingdom at about 2,000AD, perhaps 2012 or 2019?

 

NOTE 2:  FOREVER  Most English versions of the Old Testament clearly state that this festival is an ordinance which should be kept forever. Those versions are translated from the Jewish Masoretic text of about 900AD. The text used for this article is the Greek Septuagint of 285BC, from which the Edomite Jew Masoretes made their later translation in order to support their talmudic religion. The Greek word which is usually translated as "forever" or "eternity" is αίων (aioon) a word which literally means "during age." But in the Greek Septuagint, in Exodus 12, we find that instead of  αίων (aioon) the command is to keep the ordinance perpetually through their "generations." The Greek word for generations is γενεŗς (geneas) which means "race, family" or "generation." In this case, "generation" is a racial word regarding offspring who are generated from the same race. The proper translation of these passages would be to indicate that this Unleavened Bread Festival is to be kept throughout the family or race of Israel. It does not mean "forever," and we see that the early Christian church left the O.T. ordinance behind very quickly. The Doctrina and the Didache are documents written during the first century AD which set forth rituals and practices for the newly forming Christian groups, such as Baptism and the Lord's Meal and the Lord's Day (Sunday), continuing the O.T. holy day festivals is not part of the earliest Christians' agenda. I think we should consider these earliest writings as a more accurate presentation of the beliefs of those who lived at the time of Jesus, some of them having walked and talked with him. We might also acknowledge that they had a better understanding of the use of the Greek language of their day, something which modern scholars can only speculate about. Modern Christianity does not even acknowledge the Fish as symbolizing the age of Pisces which Jesus inaugurated. I think it is highly significant that Jesus' followers abandoned the O.T. rituals and laws immediately after the Resurrection.

EX 12:17  "perpetual ordinance for you throughout your generations."

EX 12:14  "thru all your generations; ye shall keep it a feast for a perpetual ordinance"

EX 12:41  "all the children of Israel to their generations."

    Now, let's discuss the phrase "perpetual ordinance," because the word "perpetual" carries a sense of "perpetuity," of continuing something forever. The Greek word which is translated into English as "perpetual" is αίωνιον (aioonion) which means "during the age" or "during ages." While this word is wrongly translated into English Bibles as "forever" or "eternity," it has the very definite meaning of limited time of an epoch, era, aeon, or age. Since the Exodus from Egypt occurred during the age of the Lamb (Aries), and since Jesus was born at the beginning of the age of the Fish (Pisces), then we can understand why the early Christians had no difficulty leaving the pre-Jesus ordinances, rituals, and religion behind them, as they ventured to inaugurate a new age with a radically new teaching from Jesus who never hinted at any structured religion, but rather He simply destroyed the old one, not a stone left standing.

    CONCLUSION: As I worked with this study during the Holy Days of 2011, I struggled with the question about proper observance of this important and highly meaningful Passover event. Now, I think it is clear that a strict O.T. style observance of the seven day festival is no longer appropriate, or even commendable, because Jesus gave us a new Liberation and a new style of spirituality, not based on rituals and laws. Yet, I think that it is highly profitable to each of us to understand the importance of the Passovers, to know their history, and to honor the memories, while we undertake the third and final Passover event for ourselves which will see the ending of our flesh bodies and the Liberation to the new Kingdom of God.

 

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