Today our church service had a special speaker. His name is Dr. Michael Herts and he is a psychologist by trade, a Jew by birth and a believer in Christ by the grace of God. He is Jewish, but the good news is he has recognized and received Jesus Christ as his Messiah.
Michael’s talk today consisted of the Passover celebration as a Jew would celebrate it. Of course most of us—Gentiles celebrate it by eating bread and drinking the juice, or wine, but there is much more to it than that. While Jews still observe Passover to remember God’s delivering Israel from slavery in Egypt; Michael showed us today how it is, and always has been, about Jesus Christ.
We started out reading several verses from Exodus 12 where the story is found. God instructed the Hebrew people to take an unblemished lamb, kill it, and wipe the blood on both doorposts and on the lintel of the door. Then they were to roast and eat all of the lamb inside the house. As God passed through the land he would Passover the doors that had the blood on them. He would strike down the firstborn of all that didn’t have the blood. This is salvation for the nation of Israel. Of course this is really a picture, or foreshadowing, of what Christ, the Lamb of God, would do for us many years after. He too was slain and his blood was shed on the left and right from each of his hands and from the crown of thorns placed on his head. Isn’t it awesome how that is exactly the same places shown on the doorposts in Egypt?
Let me just say a couple things here. Michael didn’t tell us this but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to do so. The placing of the blood on the doorposts and the Hebrews going inside their house is symbolic of us being “In Christ.” The eating of the lamb is a picture of “Christ in us.” This has been the plan all along; God has always intended us to be placed in Christ, by way of the cross, and for Christ to be placed into us by way of our communion with him. Jesus said, “If you don’t eat of my flesh and drink my blood you have no life in yourselves.” You see it takes the blood to cover us, but it is the life of Christ in us that enables us to live the life. They were told to eat in haste with their clothes and shoes on ready to go. Think about it for a minute. If they hadn’t eaten of the Lamb they would have had to travel quite a long way before eating and many of them wouldn’t have made it. For us the picture is clear. Without Christ as our life we are not going to make it!
Michael walked us through the whole Passover meal with four cups, unleavened bread, and the bitter root, cup of salty water symbolizing tears, an egg for new life and many more visual and symbolic items. There was entirely too much for me to recite here, but I will tell you my favorite part. There is a special item made with three individual compartments to hold three pieces of the bread. The one in the center would be taken out, broken and hidden until the end of the meal. The children would come in and find the hidden bread for the completion of the celebration. Michael pointed out how there are three pieces of bread but they are all in one cloth. It is the center one, symbolizing Jesus the Word become flesh, that is taken out so all can see and to be broken. The remaining two stay out of sight. Breaking it and then hiding it pictures the breaking of Jesus on the cross and his burial only to be raised back three days later. Jesus then is the visible representation of God for us while the Father and Spirit are unseen.
There is so much about Jesus Christ foreshadowed in the Hebrew Bible or Old Testament and I never tire of hearing it. If you would like to check out more about this go to the link below.
Written by Louie Click here for more info–The Chosen People ministries-The Meaning of Passover