It is so easy to under-read Passover1 as a punishment on Pharaoh and all his first born children plus his cattle for firstly having put the Children of Israel into a slavery of hard rigour for hundreds of years, and secondly for refusing to let them leave Egypt to worship God in his holy mountain. And pretty well that is cut and dried you might say. God dealt Pharaoh and Egypt in general a pretty hard blow, they caved in and the Children of Israel went and worshipped God in his mountain. Besides which, many people say, that is Old Testament stuff and has all been done away with thanks to “our” salvation by faith in Jesus Christ.
You see, by so describing the Passover judgment on Egypt and the subsequent exodus of Israel in the above manner, I have totally under-read and missed the very points that our Lord God had gone to pains to keep before our eyes – and yes even for us in this modern day.
The whole account of Passover and the exodus is pure prophesy for an event that would occur some one thousand three hundred and one years into the future from that time, and in turn that event would be prophetic for another event to occur a further two and a half thousand years2 (or so) on from then.
The Passover and release of the Children of Israel is so important for all Christians because it graphically ties together the arduous life of Israel as a fledgling nation under stress, their trust in a messiah and the mighty hand of God to lift them out of that world of slavery into a world where the Lord God became their “Immanuel” and resided with them in the wilderness initially and then in the Promised Land.
If that sounds familiar then that is because it speaks specifically of Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour when he, the first born of God, took on the sin of all mankind and offered himself a sacrifice for the atonement of mankind’s sin; but also released mankind to go and worship God in his mountain and some fifty days after his ascension to heaven God in Spirit came to dwell with mankind.
Now if that also sounds familiar then that is because it speaks specifically of Jesus the Messiah returning to mankind to deliver all believers from the arduous world of sin and release them to worship God in his mountain – The New Jerusalem in the heavens, and It gives me great pleasure to see this classic example of an event that speaks on all planes of existence where the Lord God reaches down to his creation and lifts them up to his holy mountain.
But there is even more to the Passover event that our Lord God would wish us to realise in our individual lives and by listening to the teaching of the Holy Spirit the Lord God provides a vital key to understanding why the End Times are coming head-on towards humanity about which we are just not all that prepared. To our collective shame many congregations in general ignore the Hebrew scripts (Old Testament) in favour of Jesus’ ministry to the world (New Testament) and in doing so they are never able to discover the whole picture of the jigsaw puzzle before us.
If I may paraphrase scripture, God has said that if you do not believe what occurred in the past times, meaning (in part) the period of the Children of Israel being in slavery and how they were rescued out of that horrible world in which they had become trapped, then you “cannot” truly believe what will happen in the future. The deep prophetic truths of the Book of Revelation will not be apparent to those who ignore or write-off the Hebrew scripts as irrelevant to these modern times. There is a gross misunderstanding of why God in past times put the whole world through all of its trials and tribulations – including the raising up of Jacob to become a nation treasured by God above any other nation and why they suffered (and continue to suffer) in the flesh so badly.
The date of the Passover and exodus of the fledgling nation of Israel from Egypt occurred on Nissan 15 in the year 2448 of the Hebrew Calendar. Jesus’ ministry here on Earth in the flesh abruptly ceased on Nissan 15 in 3789 of the Hebrew calendar. And we can fully expect (ie take it to the bank) that come time for all faithful believers to be released from the bonds of this sinful world – it too will occur on Nissan 15. But being prophetic, the exact year is only a discussion point.
This is why we see God saying to the Children of Israel (Note: they are in time and place believers in that era) you shall observe this day for ever. That message is for us today – and for us tomorrow.
And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the LORD throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever.
And ye shall observe the feast of unleavened bread; for in this selfsame day have I brought your armies out of the land of Egypt: therefore shall ye observe this day in your generations by an ordinance for ever.
So the next time you are drawn into a discussion about the Old Testament and Passover in particular you might like to shine the light of God into that discussion. If we choose to ignore the trials and tribulations of how God dealt with the early believers (Yes- the Hebrew peoples) then our belief is pretty shaky because it has no foundations. And that you can take to the bank.
1. The Exodus account: Exodus Chapter 12
2. Jewish wisdom accounts the Messiah to return in Hebrew calendar year 6,000.
Original Blog April 2020
Special Note: Passover on Nissan 15 is not the current blasphemous “Christian” celebration of the pagan Temple Princess Easter which was instituted by Constantine in the Fourth Century AD to separate Roman-ism from everything Hebrew. The reason: he was demonstrably an anti-Semitic ruler, a pagan believer and the father of modern day syncretism.