We recently celebrated two holidays which remind us of remarkable examples of God’s deliverance.
The first, Passover has been a central part of the Jewish identity, serving as a reminder of their deliverance from slavery.
The second, Easter or Resurrection Sunday for believers in Yeshua is a reminder of His triumphant victory over the grave, providing deliverance from death.
Within the Messianic community and increasingly among many Christian communities, it is a common practice to fuse together these two holidays and incorporate many of the traditions of Passover in light of Yeshua‘ life, death and resurrection.
There are many reasons for this, Yeshua instituted the rite usually referred to as the Lord’s Supper, Communion or the Eucharist at a Passover Seder and said “this do in remembrance of Me”.
Additionally, comparing the symbolic practices of the Passover Seder to aspects of Yeshua’s life, death and resurrection is a very enriching spiritual experience.
However, as we give Yeshua the central place He deserves in our Messianic Seder, we certainly want to also give proper attention to the original act of supernatural deliverance through Moses celebrated at Passover.
The deliverance from Egypt in itself is an amazing story of God’s deliverances, faithfulness and grace!
We see God demonstrate His faithfulness as He remembers His promise to Abraham. He had told Abraham that his descendants would be in a strange land for 400 years (Gen. 15:13-14). But He also promised to return them to their own land (Gen. 15:7-8). Through the events of Passover, God begins to do exactly that, showing that He is a faithful God who keeps promises.
Through the Passover story, we also see how God seeks to demonstrate that He is the true God to not only the Jewish people, but to all people. He uses Moses to reveal His power to Pharaoh and all Egypt. At this time in history, Egypt was one of the greatest civilizations in the world. They were also a thoroughly polytheistic culture who worshiped a host of gods and goddesses. The LORD through Moses brings plagues upon Egypt, not solely to judge them or break Pharoah’s resolve to keep the people in bondage, but also to demonstrate that He was superior to the gods of Egypt. Many of the plagues struck not only at the heart of Egyptian civilization, but also at the heart of their worship of false gods. Every major god, from the Nile river god to the sun god to the divine pharaoh were humbled and shown to be powerless before the God of Israel.
The testimony of His marvels in Egypt went before the people of Israel to the many tribes and peoples that they would encounter in the Promised Land.
The next great lesson we see is that God is a god of grace. He leads His people to Mount Sinai where He gives them the gift of Torah. Often Torah or “law” is put in contrast to grace, but we see a key lesson in God’s revelation at Sinai that refutes this concept.
As He appears to Moses, He declares His name and describes Himself (Ex. 34:6). Here, God had the chance to emphasize any aspect of His nature. He tells Moses that He is a god of grace and mercy. He emphasized His grace over His justice, holiness or any other aspect of His nature. This reminder of grace coupled with His revelation in Torah, we see that God wishes to reveal Himself to His people in order to have a relationship with them. He also wants them to live in a way that is beneficial and this is the gracious intention of Torah.
Every Passover, we sing Dayenu (enough for us) which enumerate 15 examples of God’s deliverance, His miracles and His revelations and declares that each act of God would have been enough. Yet, in His grace He continues to go above and beyond what we deserve.
During this Passover and Resurrection season we are thanking God for His faithfulness to His people Israel and also His love for people of every nation! Dayenu!
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