This week we will take a little break from the Genesis study and look at the Passover, which is being celebrated this week.
Also I would encourage you to go to the daily devotional all week, as we will be spending our time in Psalms 22 with the opening verse saying:
Psalms 22:1a My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?
Sound familiar, it should because these are Jesus' words on the cross.
Matt 27:46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, "Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?" that is, "My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?"
So, what is the Passover, and why was it started in the first place you may be thinking?
Or maybe you know what the Passover is, but never really associated it with Jesus.
These questions we will be looking at this week, and it all started in the book of Exodus in chapter 12.
To give you a little background, first you have heard the story of Moses and Pharaoh and how Moses went to Pharaoh under God's guidance to set the people of Israel free from their bondage and slavery in Egypt.
Note: When we get to the end of our study in Genesis, then we will see how the children of Israel got into Egypt.
If you have seen the movies The Ten Commandments or Prince of Egypt you have an idea of what happened.
Well there were a total of ten plagues against Egypt to give Pharaoh every opportunity to let God's people go. But Pharaoh refused to listen to God and Passover is the 10th and final judgment against Egypt and Pharaoh.
Here is a list of plagues up to the final one, which constituted the Passover.
1. Waters Become Blood
Ex 7:17-18 17 'Thus says the LORD: "By this you shall know that I am the LORD. Behold, I will strike the waters which are in the river with the rod that is in my hand, and they shall be turned to blood. 18 "And the fish that are in the river shall die, the river shall stink, and the Egyptians will loathe to drink the water of the river."
Ex 8:2-4 2 "But if you refuse to let them go, behold, I will smite all your territory with frogs. 3 "So the river shall bring forth frogs abundantly, which shall go up and come into your house, into your bedroom, on your bed, into the houses of your servants, on your people, into your ovens, and into your kneading bowls. 4 "And the frogs shall come up on you, on your people, and on all your servants." ' "
Ex 8:16 So the LORD said to Moses, "Say to Aaron, 'Stretch out your rod, and strike the dust of the land, so that it may become lice throughout all the land of Egypt.' "
Ex 8:21 "Or else, if you will not let My people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies on you and your servants, on your people and into your houses. The houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground on which they stand.
5. Egyptian Livestock Diseased
Ex 9:3-4 3 "behold, the hand of the LORD will be on your cattle in the field, on the horses, on the donkeys, on the camels, on the oxen, and on the sheep--a very severe pestilence. 4 "And the LORD will make a difference between the livestock of Israel and the livestock of Egypt. So nothing shall die of all that belongs to the children of Israel." ' "
Ex 9:8-9 8 So the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, "Take for yourselves handfuls of ashes from a furnace, and let Moses scatter it toward the heavens in the sight of Pharaoh. 9 "And it will become fine dust in all the land of Egypt, and it will cause boils that break out in sores on man and beast throughout all the land of Egypt."
Ex 9:18 "Behold, tomorrow about this time I will cause very heavy hail to rain down, such as has not been in Egypt since its founding until now.
Ex 10:4-6 'Or else, if you refuse to let My people go, behold, tomorrow I will bring locusts into your territory. 5 'And they shall cover the face of the earth, so that no one will be able to see the earth; and they shall eat the residue of what is left, which remains to you from the hail, and they shall eat every tree which grows up for you out of the field. 6 'They shall fill your houses, the houses of all your servants, and the houses of all the Egyptians--which neither your fathers nor your fathers' fathers have seen, since the day that they were on the earth to this day.' " And he turned and went out from Pharaoh.
Ex 10:21 Then the LORD said to Moses, "Stretch out your hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, darkness which may even be felt."
You may be thinking, "WOW" but still even though all of this happened to Pharaoh and the people of Egypt, Pharaoh still refused to let God's people go.
And here we have the final judgment: Death of the Firstborn
Ex 12:13 'Now the blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you are. And when I see the blood, I will pass over you; and the plague shall not be on you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt.
This was not limited to the Egyptians only; only if the children of Israel followed God's instructions would this final judgment upon the Egyptians pass over the children of Israel.
Only by the blood were the children of Israel saved. God looked for the blood upon the doors and God knew that the people who put this blood upon their door believed God's word.
It is the same way with Christians. God looks down and sees us as believer with the Blood of Jesus covering us. Therefore, God knows that we are His, and we believe in His word, which testifies of Jesus!
1-2 1 Now the LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, 2 "This month shall be your beginning of months; it shall be the first month of the year to you.
The month God is speaking of here is what we call the month of April, which from this time on is the first month of the year for Israel, unlike us with the first month of the year being January.
3-4 3 "Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying: 'On the tenth day of this month every man shall take for himself a lamb, according to the house of his father, a lamb for a household. 4 'And if the household is too small for the lamb, let him and his neighbor next to his house take it according to the number of the persons; according to each man's need you shall make your count for the lamb.
Jesus is called the Lamb of God, and notice here that God is instructing the children of Israel to share the lamb with their neighbors.
We are instructed as Christians to share Jesus with others, just as the children of Israel were instructed to share the Lamb with others.
Do you share Jesus with others? Are you glorifying Jesus' name around other Christians or are you complaining about your life so much that even believers have trouble-seeing Jesus in your life.
What about your neighbors, have you shared Jesus with them or are you keeping Jesus all to yourself?
It also say's, "according to each man's need". Maybe your neighbors are Christians already, but do they have needs that you can help them with?
What about those in church? There are even Christian missionaries around the world who need you support and prayer.
I don't know of any Christian who doesn't have a need.
Maybe there not all physical needs, but we ALL need prayer as brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus!
5 'Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year. You may take it from the sheep or from the goats.
Notice that the lamb should be without blemish. Another word that we would use today is "perfect".
What about you; are you perfect?
In order for a sacrifice to pay the price for sin, it had to be perfect, no spot or no blemish and in the sacrifice for our sins this person had to be sinless. Jesus was the only man that was, or ever will be perfect and sinless on this earth.
Heb 9:13-15 (NLT) 13 Under the old system, the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a young cow could cleanse people's bodies from ritual defilement. 14 Just think how much more the blood of Christ will purify our hearts from deeds that lead to death so that we can worship the living God. For by the power of the eternal Spirit, Christ offered himself to God as a perfect sacrifice for our sins. 15 That is why he is the one who mediates the new covenant between God and people, so that all who are invited can receive the eternal inheritance God has promised them. For Christ died to set them free from the penalty of the sins they had committed under that first covenant.
Also notice that the lamb was taken from the flock.
Jesus was taken from the flock of God, the children of Israel.
Matt 1:1 The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham:
6 'Now you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month. Then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it at twilight.
Jesus was hung on the cross until evening and killed by the children of Israel.
Matt 27:57-58 57 Now when evening had come, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who himself had also become a disciple of Jesus. 58 This man went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be given to him.
Acts 2:36 "Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ."
7 'And they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses where they eat it.
The two-door post were the sides of the door, and the lintel was the top of the door. This represents Jesus' crucifixion on the cross with the doorposts representing the blood from the nails in Jesus' hands, and the lintel or door top representing the blood from the crown of thorns.
8 'Then they shall eat the flesh on that night; roasted in fire, with unleavened bread and with bitter herbs they shall eat it.
Fire represents purification.
Num 31:23 "everything that can endure fire, you shall put through the fire, and it shall be clean; and it shall be purified with the water of purification. But all that cannot endure fire you shall put through water.
9 'Do not eat it raw, nor boiled at all with water, but roasted in fire--its head with its legs and its entrails.
In the NIV it says to roast it over the fire. Just as Jesus was raised above or over the earth.
John 12:32-33 32 "And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to Myself." 33 This He said, signifying by what death He would die.
10 'You shall let none of it remain until morning, and what remains of it until morning you shall burn with fire.
When Jesus He was not left on the cross, but taken down before the morning as we saw in Matt 27:57-58.
Ex 12:11-12 11 'And thus you shall eat it: with a belt on your waist, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand. So you shall eat it in haste. It is the LORD s Passover. 12 'For I will pass through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the LORD.
God's judgment against us was put on Jesus who was the firstborn of God and stricken for us.
Matt 26:67 Then they spat in His face and beat Him; and others struck Him with the palms of their hands,
Matt 27:30 & 30 (NLT) 26 So Pilate released Barabbas to them. He ordered Jesus flogged with a lead-tipped whip, then turned him over to the Roman soldiers to crucify him. 30 And they spit on him and grabbed the stick and beat him on the head with it.
Verse 12 says, "against all the gods of Egypt"
Are you holding on to your old gods from when you were in the world? What god(s) are you holding onto that needs to be struck down?
Maybe an old TV show you still watch but you know you shouldn't be?
Maybe it's a boyfriend or girlfriend who you continue in sin with.
Maybe it's some of your possessions that you refuse to get rid of like old music that glorifies satan, sin and everything Jesus died for. It could also be old books or magazines that cause you to sin with lust, or a desire to look like someone else who you think has a perfect body.
Ask the Lord to show you what old gods you are holding onto, and when God shows you what they are, then get rid of them!
13 'Now the blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you are. And when I see the blood, I will pass over you; and the plague shall not be on you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt.
Jesus' blood covers our sins so God will pass over us and not destroy us or send us to the place that we belong when we die.
Acts 20:28 "Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.
1 John 1:7 (NLT) But if we are living in the light of God's presence, just as Christ is, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from every sin.
Verse 13 once again says, "and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you," We will be raptured and not part of Gods judgment.
1 Thess 1:10 and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, even Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.
14 'So this day shall be to you a memorial; and you shall keep it as a feast to the LORD throughout your generations. You shall keep it as a feast by an everlasting ordinance.
A memorial as we know it is when we take communion. Jesus said, "Do this in remembrance of me."
We all celebrate our birthdays, but do you celebrate your re-birthday?
My what? Your re-birthday, the day you were born again! This year have a big re-birthday party and instead of getting gifts, give gifts to others.
15 'Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread. On the first day you shall remove leaven from your houses. For whoever eats leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that person shall be cut off from Israel.
Leaven represents sin. Maybe there is a sin in your life that you have been having trouble with. Try listening to Gods command here and obstain from that sin for the next 7 days, if you do, you probably wont go back to it.
Ex 12:16-22 16 'On the first day there shall be a holy convocation, and on the seventh day there shall be a holy convocation for you. No manner of work shall be done on them; but that which everyone must eat--that only may be prepared by you. 17 'So you shall observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread, for on this same day I will have brought your armies out of the land of Egypt. Therefore you shall observe this day throughout your generations as an everlasting ordinance. 18 'In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at evening, you shall eat unleavened bread, until the twenty-first day of the month at evening. 19 'For seven days no leaven shall be found in your houses, since whoever eats what is leavened, that same person shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he is a stranger or a native of the land. 20 'You shall eat nothing leavened; in all your dwellings you shall eat unleavened bread.' "
21 Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel and said to them, "Pick out and take lambs for yourselves according to your families, and kill the Passover lamb. 22 "And you shall take a bunch of hyssop, dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and strike the lintel and the two doorposts with the blood that is in the basin. And none of you shall go out of the door of his house until morning.
Moses told the elders to: "Pick out and take lambs for yourselves according to your families, and kill the Passover lamb.
Husbands I have a question for you, "As the man of the house, have you chosen the Lamb for your house, or are you giving that choice to your wife?"
What do I mean by this question? Are you the spiritual leader in your home? Are you leading your family that the Lord has blessed you with in the ways the Lord would have you? Or are you leaving the teaching of Jesus to your wife. You make sure she and the kids go to church, while you just sleep in on Sunday and never go to church yourself?
I know that these are tough words for some of you, but some of you men need to hear them.
You can shut me out, but your family will always be there with you. So be that example that Jesus told us to be, as the men of our homes.
Eph 5:25-29 25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. 28 So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church.
Maybe your prayers have seemed to be hindered lately, it could be because of the way you treat your wife and kids!
1 Peter 3:7 Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.
Hyssop was the final element before the Passover was complete.
It was also the final element right before Jesus died for our sins on the cross.
John 19:29-30 29 Now a vessel full of sour wine was sitting there; and they filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on hyssop, and put it to His mouth. 30 So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, "It is finished!" And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.
23 "For the LORD will pass through to strike the Egyptians; and when He sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the LORD will pass over the door and not allow the destroyer to come into your houses to strike you.
We are under the protective covering of the blood of Jesus.
Did you know that God would not allow the devil to tempt you without God's permission?
Job 1:10-12 (NIV) "Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. But stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face." The LORD said to Satan, "Very well, then, everything he has is in your hands, but on the man himself do not lay a finger." Then Satan went out from the presence of the LORD.
This is the story of Job, and in this story we read that satan had to ask GOD'S permission to tempt Job.
Ex 12:24-27 24 "And you shall observe this thing as an ordinance for you and your sons forever. 25 "It will come to pass when you come to the land which the LORD will give you, just as He promised, that you shall keep this service. 26 "And it shall be, when your children say to you, 'What do you mean by this service?' 27 "that you shall say, 'It is the Passover sacrifice of the LORD, who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt when He struck the Egyptians and delivered our households.' " So the people bowed their heads and worshiped.
Our children will ask us about Jesus. We are instructed even here to tell them. How can you tell them if you don't know yourself what the truth is?
That's another reason why it's so important to study the bible. Notice also that the people bowed and worshipped when the word of God was spoken. The word is holy because it's God's word. Don't take it lightly.
28 Then the children of Israel went away and did so; just as the LORD had commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did.
Moses and Aaron were given the instructions by God, and they relayed it to the children of Israel and they followed Gods words. Just as we should be doing when we go to church or a bible study and someone teaches us the word of God, we should be obedient to Gods word as it is taught to us and share it with others.
Ex 12:29-33 29 And it came to pass at midnight that the LORD struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of livestock. 30 So Pharaoh rose in the night, he, all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was not a house where there was not one dead.
31 Then he called for Moses and Aaron by night, and said, "Rise, go out from among my people, both you and the children of Israel. And go, serve the LORD as you have said. 32 "Also take your flocks and your herds, as you have said, and be gone; and bless me also." 33 And the Egyptians urged the people, that they might send them out of the land in haste. For they said, "We shall all be dead."
People should fear the Lord because of Him in our lives. Do people fear God or even acknowledge Him because they see Him in your life?
34 So the people took their dough before it was leavened, having their kneading bowls bound up in their clothes on their shoulders.
Remember leaven is a sign of sin. When we except Jesus we go out with no sin and the weight of sin is taken from off your shoulders, we become the chosen ones of God!
35 Now the children of Israel had done according to the word of Moses, and they had asked from the Egyptians articles of silver, articles of gold, and clothing.
This was payment for the hundreds of years of labor that the Israelites did.
36-38 36 And the LORD had given the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they granted them what they requested. Thus they plundered the Egyptians. 37 Then the children of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, about six hundred thousand men on foot, besides children. 38 A mixed multitude went up with them also, and flocks and herds--a great deal of livestock.
Notice that others went with them. Are people following us because we follow Jesus? Who's going to heaven with you?
Ex 12:39-43 39 And they baked unleavened cakes of the dough which they had brought out of Egypt; for it was not leavened, because they were driven out of Egypt and could not wait, nor had they prepared provisions for themselves. 40 Now the sojourn of the children of Israel who lived in Egypt was four hundred and thirty years. 41 And it came to pass at the end of the four hundred and thirty years--on that very same day--it came to pass that all the armies of the LORD went out from the land of Egypt. 42 It is a night of solemn observance to the LORD for bringing them out of the land of Egypt. This is that night of the LORD, a solemn observance for all the children of Israel throughout their generations. 43 And the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, "This is the ordinance of the Passover: No foreigner shall eat it.
You don't have to be a stranger to partake of the Lord's Supper. But you do have to be a believer.
1 Cor 11:27 Therefore whoever eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.
You can be a part of the family of God now and take the Lord's Supper in a worthy manner, but don't wait; you may not have as much time as you think!
44-46 44 "But every man's servant who is bought for money, when you have circumcised him, then he may eat it. 45 "A sojourner and a hired servant shall not eat it. 46 "In one house it shall be eaten; you shall not carry any of the flesh outside the house, nor shall you break one of its bones.
Jesus' bones were not broken
Psalms 34:20 He guards all his bones; Not one of them is broken.
John 19:33-35 33 But when they came to Jesus and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. 34 But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately blood and water came out. 35 And he who has seen has testified, and his testimony is true; and he knows that he is telling the truth, so that you may believe.
47-51 47 "All the congregation of Israel shall keep it. 48 "And when a stranger dwells with you and wants to keep the Passover to the LORD, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near and keep it; and he shall be as a native of the land. For no uncircumcised person shall eat it. 49 "One law shall be for the native-born and for the stranger who dwells among you." 50 Thus all the children of Israel did; as the LORD commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did. 51 And it came to pass, on that very same day, that the LORD brought the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt according to their armies.
God brought the children of Israel out of Egypt just as He promised.
God is ready to save you just as He promised. This very day!
Matt 11:28 "Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
But the choice is up to you!