What is…
The Passover and why is it significant

Family Passover Seder. Photograph copyrighted.
Mother serving Kneidel soup at Passover family Seder.
Photo copyrighted. All rights reserved.
Seder plate which is used in one form or another to hold the following items for the dinner: Roasted egg, charoset, lamb’s shank bone (unbroken), bitter herbs, parsley, other green leafy vegetable (such as lettuce or celery tops)

Passover is the name given to the chief of the three great historical annual festivals of the Jews. It was kept in remembrance of the Lord’s passing over the houses of the Israelites (Exodus 12:13) when the first born of all the Egyptians were destroyed

Photo copyrighted. All rights reserved.

It is called also the “feast of unleavened bread” (Exodus 23:15; Mark 14:1; Acts 12:3), because during its celebration no leavened bread was to be eaten or even kept in the household (Exodus 12:15). The word afterwards came to denote the lamb that was slain at the feast (Mark 14:12-14; 1 Corinthians 5:7).

A detailed account of the institution of this feast is given in Exodus 12 and 13.

It was afterwards incorporated in the ceremonial law (Leviticus 23:4-8) as one of the great festivals of the nation.

Photo copyrighted. All rights reserved.

In after times many changes seem to have taken place as to the mode of its celebration as compared with its first celebration (compare Deuteronomy 16:2,5,6; 2 Chronicles 30:16; Leviticus 23:10-14; Numbers 9:10,11; 28:16-24). Again, the use of wine (Luke 22:17, 20), of sauce with the bitter herbs (John 13:26), and the service of praise were introduced.

There is recorded only one celebration of this feast between the Exodus and the entrance into Canaan, namely, that mentioned in Numbers 9:5. (See JOSIAH.)

Photo copyrighted. All rights reserved.

It was primarily a commemorative ordinance, reminding the children of Israel of their miraculous deliverance out of Egypt; but it was, no doubt, also a type of the great deliverance wrought by the Messiah for all his people from the doom of death on account of sin, and from the bondage of sin itself, worse than Egyptian bondage (1 Corinthians 5:7; John 1:29; 19:32-36; 1 Peter 1:19; Galatians 4:4,5). The appearance of Jerusalem on the occasion of the Passover in the time of our Lord is thus fittingly described:

“The city itself and the neighborhood became more and more crowded as the feast approached, the narrow streets and dark arched bazaars showing the same throng of men of all nations as when Jesus had first visited Jerusalem as a boy. Even the temple offered a strange sight at this season, for in parts of the outer courts a wide space was covered with pens for sheep, goats, and cattle to be used for offerings.

Sellers shouted the merits of their beasts, sheep bleated, oxen lowed. Sellers of doves also had a place set apart for them. Potters offered a choice from huge stacks of clay dishes and ovens for roasting and eating the Passover lamb. Booths for wine, oil, salt, and all else needed for sacrifices invited customers. Persons going to and from the city shortened their journey by crossing the temple grounds, often carrying burdens… Stalls to change foreign money into the shekel of the temple, which alone could be paid to the priests, were numerous, the whole confusion making the sanctuary like a noisy market.” —John Cunningham Geikie, Life of Christ

Jesus, The Passover Lamb

Streaming video— 
Connections between the Passover and the coming apocalypse
Most followers of Jesus (Yeshua) have come to know the amazing prophecies of Passover fulfilled in our Messiah’s first coming, but did you know that the Passover also speaks of the return of our Messiah and the trials of the End Times? Discover these amazing connections that speak of the future redemption to come most of all discover the purpose of God in the Plagues.
Video by One for Israel ministry, an initiative of native-born Israelis who have become followers of Jesus Christ
Length: 12 minutes


Article Version: March 18, 2021