The Seven Feasts of Messiah - The Passover

by Eddie Chumney

The Feast of Passover was given by God to be a rehearsal of the First Coming of Jesus Christ. Jesus' sacrifice is the pivotal event in God's plan to save humanity. Speaking of His certain death, Christ said that He, as the Son of Man, must be "lifted up" (crucified) even as "Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness," so that "whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life."

We see here that Jesus' sacrifice, the central message of the Passover, was a supreme act of love for humanity.  This important event laid the foundation for the remaining annual Holy Days and Festivals.  It is the most momentous step in God's plan. 

The Passover in the Old Testament foreshadowed Christ's crucifixion. God declared Passover to be a permanent celebration for all eternity. (Exodus 12:13-14)  Historically, Passover celebrates God's deliverance of the children of Israel from bondage in Egypt, where they were slaves to the Egyptians (Exodus 6:5-8, 13:3,14).

The spiritual application that God wants us to understand can be seen as this:  Egypt is a type of the world and the world's system.  Its ruler, Pharoah, was a type of satan.  The bondage people are in when they live according to the ways of the world's system is sin (John 8:34).

Historically, the children of Israel were delivered from the bondage in Egypt by putting the blood of a lamb upon the doorposts of their houses (Exodus 12:13).  Spiritually, this is a picture of Jesus and how those who believe in Him are delivered from the bondages of sin and the rule of satan in their lives.  Jesus is the Lamb of God (John 1:29).  Jesus is also our Passover (1 Corinthians 5:7).  Those who follow Christ are the house of God (Hebrews 3:6).  The doorposts are our hearts.  It is only through trusting by faith in the shed blood of Christ, our Passover, that we are free from the bondage of sin (Galatians 5:1). This is because the blood of Christ redeems us from sin (Leviticus 17:11, Ehesians 1:7, Colossians 1:14, 1 Peter 1:18-19, 1 John 1:7, Revelation 1:5)

During Passover, the head of each household was to take a lamb of the first year on the tenth day of the first month known as Nisan and set it aside until the fourteenth day (Exodus 12:3-6).  In the evening of the fourteenth day, at exactly 3:00 p.m., the lamb was to be killed (Exodus 12:6)  The blood of the lamb was to be sprinkled on the lintel and two side posts of the household door. 

The lamb was to be roasted with fire, with bitter herbs, and with unleavened bread, and the entire household was to feast upon the body of the lamb (Exodus 12:7-8).  The people were instructed by God to eat the lamb with haste and to be dressed and ready to leave Egypt at the midnight hour.  This would be the fifteenth day of Nisan (Exodus 12:10-11).

At midnight on that fateful evening in Egypt, the death angel passed through the land.  Every house tht did not have the token of the blood on the doorposts and lintel suffered the judgment of God (Exodus 12:12-15).  The Hebrew word for Passover is 'Pesach', which means "to pass or hover over."  This word speaks to us about two things.  First, it shows the passing over in judgment from death and sin to life in Jesus.  Second, it tells us about allowing, by faith, the blood of Jesus to hover over our lives and give us divine protection from the evil one.

God's Commandments for Passover

Exodus 12:
vs.2--This month shall be unto you the beginning of months: it shall be the first month of the year to you

vs.3--Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house

vs4.--And if the household be too little for the lamb, let him and his neighbour next unto his house take it according to the number of the souls; every man according to his eating shall make your count for the lamb

vs5.--Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats

vs.6--And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening

vs.7--And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it

vs.8--And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it

vs.9--Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with fire; his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof

vs.10--And ye shall let nothing remain until the morning; and that which remaineth of it until the morning ye shall burn with fire

vs.11--And thus shall ye eat it; with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and ye shall eat it in haste: it is the Lord's passover

vs.12--For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite 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.

Passover was the beginning of months (vs.2)

Nisan is the first month of the Religious Calendar.  When we receive Jesus into our lives it is the beginning of a New Covenant relationship with God (Jeremiah 31:31-33, 2 Corinthians 5:17).  Passover is the first of the Feasts.  Likewise, repenting of our sins and believing in the shed blood of Jesus is the first step in our walk with God.

The lamb was hidden for four days (vs.3,6)

God commanded Israel to take a lamb on the tenth day of Nisan and set it aside until the fourteenth day.  These four days were fulfilled by Jesus during the Passover week.  Remember, Jesus is the Lamb of God (John 1:29).  He entered Jerusalem and went to the temple, which was the house of God, and went on public display there for four days from Nisan 10 to Nisan 14 (Matthew chapters 21-26).

In eschatology, the study of last days, these four days that the lamb was hidden is prophetic of the people's expectations that the Messiah would come 4,000 years from the creation of Adam as part of the 7,000 year plan of God to redeem both man and the earth back to how things were in the Garden of Eden.  These four days are prophetic of the Messiah being hid from the world and not coming to earth for four days or 4,000 years from the creation of Adam.  A day is understood to be prophetic of a thousand years, based upon Psalm 90:4 and 2 Peter 3:8.

Linking Psalm 90:4 to each day in creation, God ordained each day in creation to be prophetic of a thousand years of time and the entire redemtion to take 7,000 years to complete from the fall of man in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 1:1,5,8,13,19,23,31, 2:1-3).

The lamb was to be without blemish (vs.5)

Jesus was the Lamb of God (John 1:29) without spot or blemish (1 Peter 1:18-20).

The lamb was of the first year (vs.5)

Jesus was the firstborn of Mary naturally (Matthew 1:21-25), and the firstborn of God spiritually (Colossians 1:15).

It is a male (vs.5)

It was through one man's sin that sin came into the world (Romans 5:12). Because Adam, the firt male, sinned, so a male, Jesus, must die to atone for tht sin (Romans 5:17-19)

It is a lamb for a house (vs.3-4)

God's intention was that all (households) experience salvation.  The lamb was a lamb for the house.  By believing in the Lord Jesus, we become members of the household of faith (Ephesians 2:19).  Salvation for a household is available to all who believe in the Messiah, the Lamb of God (Genesis 7:1, Joshua 24:15, John 4:46-53, Luke 19:5-10, Acts 16:31, 18:8)

There is a progressive revelation of the Lamb in the Bible.  First, there is a lamb for a house (Exodus 12:3-4) second, a lamb for a nation (John 11:49-52) and finally, a lamb for the world (John 1:29).

A Passover lamb was to be killed in the evening

('evening' translated as twilight or between the evenings) The Biblical day goes from evening to evening, from sundown to sundown, which is roughly 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. (Genesis 1:5)
The day (6:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.) is divided into two 12-hour periods.
-The evening runs from 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.
-The morning runs from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
-Each 12-hour period is divided into two smaller portions.
-From 6:00 a.m. to noon is the morning part of the day.
-From noon to 6:00 p.m. is the evening part of the day.

The phrase, "between the evening" (vs.6) refers to the period of the day that goes from noon to 6:00 p.m., which is exactly 3:00 p.m.  This would be the ninth hour of the day, counting from 6:00 a.m. Jesus died at the ninth hour of the day (Matthew 27:45-50).  This would be 3:00 p.m., the ninth hour, counting from 6:00 a.m.

The whole assembly shall kill it

Every person who has ever lived on planet Earth and sinned is guilty of killing Jesus because He died for all sinners (Romans 3:10,23). A whole congregation of people was involved in the death of Jesus.  The Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John show how the Sanhedrin, the priests, the Romans, and the people of Israel all clamored for the crucifixion of Jesus and for His blood to be shed (Acts 4:26-28).

The blood must be applied to the door (vs.7)

Those who believe in the Lord Jesus are the house of God (Hebrews 3:6).
The only way into the house of God is through the shed blood of Christ, who is the Door (John 10:7-9).

The body of the lamb must be eaten (vs. 8-10)

Both the body and blood of the lamb speak of the body and blood of Christ (Matthew 26:26-28).  We spiritually eat of the body of the Lamb when we eat of His body (today represented by the bread).

It must be eaten the same night (vs.8)

Jesus was crucified, suffered, and died the same night.

It must be eaten with unleavened bread
(vs. 8)

Leaven speaks of sin (1 Corinthians 5:6-8).  Unleavened bread is without sin.  As believers, we are instructed to live holy (unleavened) lives before God (Leviticus 19:2, 1 Peter 1:15-16).

It must be eaten with bitter herbs
(vs. 8)

To those who have accepted Jesus into their lives, bitter herbs speak of the bondage and burdens we experience while living in this world ( a type of Egypt) before we accepted Jesus into our lives.  This burden of sin is placed on us by satan when we yield to his lies and deception, and then sin because of our own evil desires. For Christ, dying on the cross was a bitter experience because He had to pay for man's sin with His sinless life.

The lamb must be roasted in fire (vs.8)

Fire speaks of judgment, refining, and purification.  Our faith is judged and tested by fire so it can be refined and purified and come forth as pure gold (Zechariah 13:9, James 1:12, 1 Peter 1:7).

It must not be sodden with water

The Gospel of Jesus must not be watered down (Mark 7:9,13).

The head, legs, and other parts of the lamb must be eaten (vs.9)

Those who believe in the Lord Jesus must feed on the mind of Christ (Philippians 2:5, 1 Corinthians 2:16, Romans 12:2, Ephesians 4:21-23, Hebrews 8:10).  The legs speak of our walk (Colossians 2:6).  How are we, the believers in Christ to walk?  See, Romans 6:4, 8:1,4, 2 Corinthians 5:7, Galations 5:16, Ephesians 5:2,8, Colossians 1:10, 4:5, 1 Thessalonians 4:1, 1 John 1:7, and 2 John vs.6

The lamb must be eaten in haste

Bible believers must be quick to leave Egypt (the influences of the world) and run toward the life that is in the Savior, Jesus Christ (Luke 19:5-6).

It mjust be eaten with our loins girded (vs.11)

Our loins being girded speaks about our hearts desire to eagerly serve and obey God.  Our spiritual loins are the truth of the Word of God (Ephesians 6:14).  There are other Scriptures that speak about our loins being girded.  They are- 1 Kings 18:46, Luke 12:35 and 1 Peter 1:13.

Shoes must be on our feet (vs.11)

Shoes on our feet speaks about our walk with God.  Scriptures that speak about this are- Nahum 1:15, Romans 10:15 and Ephesians 6:15.

A staff must be in our hand (vs.11)

A staff in our hand speaks about the believer's authority in the Kingdom of God by the name of Jesus  The following Scriptures speak about a staff being in our hand- Genesis 38:17-18, Psalm 23:4 and Mark 6:7-8.

It is the Lord's Passover

If we follow Christ with all of our hearts, we will pass from death to life, and from judgment to divine protection (John 5:24, 1 John 3:14, 2 Corinthians 5:17).

It is a memorial (vs.14)

Passover is a memorial or a remembrance (Luke 22:13-15,19).  There are two elements of remembrance:
-God remembers us (Genesis 8:1, 9:5-16, Exodus 2:24-25, 6:2,5 Leviticus 26:38-45, Numbers 10:9, Psalm 105:7-8, 42-43, 112:6).  In fact, God has a book of remembrance (Malachi 3:16-18).
-We must remember God (Exodus 13:3, Deuteronomy 7:17-19, 8:18, 16:3, Numbers 15:37-41).

It is to be observed at the going down of the sun
(Deuteronomy 16:2,6).

This was fulfilled by the Lord at His crucifixion (Matthew 27:45-46).

It is the place where God would put his Name (Deuteronomy 16:2,6)

The place where God has put His name is Jerusalem (2 Kings 21:4).  Jesus was crucified in Jerusalem

Not a bone of the lamb was to be broken
(Exodus 12:43-46)

Not a bone of our Lord was broken while He hung on the cross (John 19:33).

There was to be an explanation of the service (Exodus 12:25-28)

Jesus explained each part of the Passover as He did the service (Luke 22:14-20, 1 Corinthians 11:23-26)

The Egyptians were spoiled at the Exodus (Exodus 12:31-36)

Satan was spoiled when Jesus entered hell and rose again (Colossians 2:15)

You must be circumcised to eat the Passover
(Exodus 12:48, Joshua 5:2-10)

The physical act of circumcision was only a picture of the inward or spiritual circumcision that God wanted us to have (Romans 2:28-29).  God has always desired for His people to be circumcised in the heart (Deuteronomy 10:12-16, 1 Corinthians 7:18-19, Galatians 6:12-15).

The Passover Feast was to be a holy convocation, and no work was to be done. (Exodus 12:16)

A believer finds true rest in ceasing from his own works and resting in the finished work of Christ, God's Passover Lamb (Genesis 2:1-2, Matthew 11:28-30, Hebrews 4:1-10).

The Passover must be killed outside the gates of the city
(Deuteronomy 16:5)

Our Lord was crucified outside of the city walls of Jerusalem at a place called Golgotha (John 19:16-19, Hebrews 13:10-13).

There is healing power in the Lamb
(Exodus 15:26)

Christ, is the Healer sent from God (Isaiah 53:1-5, 1 Peter 2:24, 1 Corinthians 11:26-30).

The Exodus was on eagle's wings(Exodus 19:4)

Scriptures associated with this are Deuteronomy 32:9-13, Isaiah 40:31, Luke 17:33-37 and Revelation 12:6,14.

They sang a song of rejoicing to the Lord (Exodus 15:1, 19-21)

Whenever a believer experiences and understands the meaning of Passover, there is a spirit of rejoicing to the Lord for his or her deliverance from sin, and for experiencing the newness of life in the Savior.
NOTE:  The Passover Seder, which is the service and meal that celebrates the Passover, always ends with songs of rejoicing.  This can be seen in Mark 14:26.

Israel is the firstborn of God (Exodus 4:22-23)

All those who accept Jesus as Lord and Savior are called the firstborn of God even as Jesus is called the firstborn of God (Romans 8:29, Colossians 1:15,18, Hebrews 12:22-23).

On the fourteenth of Nisan, at the third hour of the day (9 a.m.), the high priest took the lamb and ascended the altar so he could tie the lamb in place on the alter.  At the same time on that day, Jesus was nailed to the cross on Mount Moriah (Mark 15:25).  At the time of the evening sacrifice (3 p.m.) for Passover (Exodus 12:6), the high priest ascended the altar, cut the throat of the lamb with a knife, and said the words, "It is finished."  These are the exact words said after giving a peace offering to God.

At this same time, Jesus died (the ninth hour, 3:00 p.m., Matthew 27:46), saying these exact words in John 19:30- "IT IS FINISHED."