Why You Should Care About Passover

Why You Should Care About Passover

David CerulloBy David Cerullo9 Minutes

Passover foreshadows the fulfillment of the long-awaited promise of the coming Messiah.

I’m often amazed to meet Christians who have little interest in observing the Feast of Passover. I share with them three critical reasons why every believer should care about, and celebrate, this important time on God’s calendar:

Passover foreshadows the fulfillment of the long-awaited promise of the coming Messiah.

God commanded His people (and, I believe, us today) to celebrate it.

Celebrating Passover and following God’s instructions will bring about the receipt of specific covenant promises the Lord wants to release in your life.

Too often, Christians focus their study of the Bible in the New Testament and completely overlook the Old Testament. However, Paul tells us that all the things that happened to the children of Israel happened as an example to us, “written for our admonition” (1 Corinthians 10:6-11).

One such incredible example is the story of God delivering the children of Israel from Egypt. It had great meaning and purpose to them, and it still has great meaning and purpose for us!

When Moses demanded Pharaoh let the Israelites go, Pharaoh gave a resounding “no” (Exodus 5). God’s ultimate hand of deliverance was seen in the 10 plagues He sent on the people and land of Egypt. As the last plague, the death angel killed all the firstborn people and animals of Egypt.

The 10 plagues weren’t just a random number. God could have sent five, 20, or any other number. Why 10? Because the Egyptians worshiped 10 different gods. Jehovah, the only living and true God, was making a statement: “I am God, and there is none other besides Me. In My hand are might and power, and none can withstand Me! I am greater than all the false, impersonating gods you worship and esteem.”

God used the blood of a lamb to deliver His children from over 400 years of slavery in Egypt. The specific instruction God gave them to place the blood of an unblemished lamb on the doorposts of their houses had more significance than they could have ever imagined.

Choosing an unblemished lamb would speak of the sinless life of Jesus, who would one day lay down His life as atonement for the sins of the world. Placing the blood on the doorposts of their home would symbolize the blood of Jesus that covers our hearts and saves us from eternal death.

Passover and the Last Supper

God commanded the celebration of Passover “throughout your generations” (Exodus 12:14). He called it an “everlasting ordinance” (Exodus 12:17). In other words, He wanted His people to do this forever.

This wasn’t just an instruction to the children of Israel. It was an instruction to all who would be called by His name. Jesus celebrated the Feast of Passover. The disciples celebrated the Feast of Passover. The apostle Paul celebrated the Feast of Passover. The early church celebrated the Feast of Passover. God commands us to celebrate this feast…perpetually…forever.

When Jesus and His disciples partook of the Last Supper, they were celebrating Passover. So much symbolism surrounded this meal.

As Jesus broke the unleavened bread, He reminded them that He was the bread that came down from Heaven. His was the body that would be broken for them. When He took the cup of wine (there are four in a Passover Seder), Jesus specifically picked up the third cup, the cup of Redemption. By taking this cup, He was making a powerful statement, saying “I am your redemption.”

For hundreds of years, the children of Israel had been keeping their “Appointed Time” with God. God called it a Holy Convocation, and convocation means rehearsal. For all these years, they had no idea what they were rehearsing, but this was it…the coming of God’s only Son to lay down His life as a ransom for their sins.

Listen to the words of John the Baptist when he saw Jesus coming to be baptized by him, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29).

Jesus, the unblemished Lamb of God, was slain the day after the Last Supper, sometime around twilight. His blood brought forgiveness and redemption, covering the heart (home) of every believer—not only protecting us from death, but giving us eternal life.

There are many symbolic things found in the Passover celebration or Seder service. One is the afikomen—a piece of broken bread which has been scored and pierced. It is wrapped in a napkin and hidden away (as was the body of Jesus) to be found (by children) and brought back to the table.

Again, this was and is much more than just a metaphor. God was painting a picture of what was to come. Jesus, God’s Son, would be broken for us, pierced, crucified, buried, and resurrected. God was showing His people in advance what would happen. Passover was a Holy Convocation…a rehearsal of what was to come.

Although they didn’t realize it at the time, they were rehearsing the death and resurrection of the Messiah. God wanted them to practice it…rehearse it…and tell it to their children throughout the generations, so that when it came to pass, they would recognize what they were rehearsing and recognize Jesus as the Messiah.

They were to kill the lamb, roast it, eat it, and do so with their sandals on their feet, their staffs in their hands, and their clothes girded around them—ready to leave Egypt!

The lamb was to be their deliverance out of Egypt and the source of their strength as they left Egypt. The Bible says they left in haste. They didn’t have time to prepare food. The lamb would be their nourishment.

My friend, it’s the blood of Jesus that covers our sins. It’s the body of Jesus that gives us strength and nourishment to leave Egypt (bondage to the world). Have you applied His blood to the doorposts of your heart today?

5 Great Passover Promises

God spoke through Moses to the children of Israel in Exodus 6:6-8 and promised them five specific things:

  1. I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians.
  2. I will deliver you from their bondage.
  3. I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with mighty acts of judgment.
  4. I will take you for My own people, and I will be your God.
  5. I will bring you to the land I swore to give to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob. I will give it to you as a possession.

My friend, it is Jesus who brings you out from under the burdens of the world’s system. It is Jesus who redeems you and delivers you from bondage. It is Jesus who makes you a son or daughter of the living God. It is Jesus who has determined a place and a plan for your life.

Why celebrate Passover? Because by doing so you are keeping one of the Lord’s instructions, recognizing all that Jesus has done for you!

God bless you,

David Cerullo