Why celebrate the Passover? I was asked. We are a new covenant people.
These sort of comments display a huge ignorance of the prophetic aspect of Passover. We have been celebrating Passover as a New Testament people for several years now ~ as some of you know, having suffered much in accordance with my angst ~ & each year I am reminded anew how many layers there invariably are to the things of God. So there was never any question that if you gave me a church of mine very own to play with we would be a church that taught on & celebrated the seven main Judaic festivals.
Passover is a spring festival, the first festival of the sacred year, the festival on which all the others hang. It is one of the *moed* ~ the appointed times of God, times that God specifically indicated that He wished His people to spend time with Him. On the surface it is all about God bringing His people, Israel, out of Egypt. I have heard pastors who would never dream of celebrating Passover teach that Egypt is a symbol for the world, yeast for sin, the bread & the wine are the Passover elements Jesus used to consummate the new covenant with those closest to Him. This is about the work of God bringing salvation, redemption, sanctification...ownership.
And this is the thing that I think, as a homeschooler, attracted me most. These festivals are first & foremost family celebrations. They are meant to be passed on from parent to child, not just relating history but reaffirming the goodness of God. This is what Jesus was doing on the Wednesday night ~ Wednesday, not Friday. Do the math. To be three days & three nights in the tomb he did not die on the Friday. But how? Because we have all learnt over the years that Shabbat starts at 6pm on Friday night....
Everyone went up to Jerusalem for Passover. Every family was required to have a lamb slaughtered in the temple. Logistically it was not possible. So the priests in their wisdom began Passover early, to accommodate the numbers, & declared a long shabbat.
Everything on the Seder plate, everything about Passover, has a New Testament application. It is all about Jesus, as He Himself said: Search the scriptures; for in them you think you have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me. [John 5:39]
I very deliberately didn't advertise this heavily. It is meant for close family members & I was only expecting our regular one or two to show up. And in all honesty I think they thought I was a little strange. Then I started getting texts. One member was researching....I was a little startled to say the least. Then I got a text checking our times, & what to bring from someone else. I began to get a little nervous because I had only ever done it with our family before. Lucky them being mummy's guinea pigs! & at that point John felt something special was about to happen.
I had felt from the Lord to prepare 6 Seder booklets; we had 7 people ~ the number of perfection or completeness. And we had 7 booklets as I had mine as well as the ones I'd photocopied. I had gone to quite a bit of trouble preparing everything ~ & believe me it's a deal when you live on an island & don't own wine glasses! And my shank bone had got tossed accidentally during the power outage last year, which meant I was frantically boiling my bone on Thursday night!
And all these people, most of whom didn't know each other at all well, came together in the most beautiful way! I had felt, as everyone would have a booklet, to share the leadership round. Wow. One lovely lady didn't blink an eye at the Hebrew & boldly had a shot at it all. She did pretty well too! Our one teenager cheerfully joined in & hunted the afikomen. We had a lovely meal, really simple but beautifully presented & really nice things. I had booked the hall for 2 hours. Four hours later we had to insist people leave!
And the best part? Every single person who attended got a huge amount out of it spiritually ~ which was, after all, the point of doing it at all!