Passover to Pentecost – Out of Egypt/ End of Passover

Passover to Pentecost – Out of Egypt/ End of Passover        Week 2 Day 1

That day the Lord saved Israel from the hands of the Egyptians. Exodus 14: 30 NIV

I have used the metaphor “out of Egypt” for a key word many times in my blog.  When you are out of Egypt you are going in to the Promise Land.  Passover is compared to your salvation experience and “out of Egypt” is your journey afterwards.  With metaphors explained let me tell the Exodus story with my “story telling glasses” on.

“We are partying now; people are dancing around playing tambourines and singing songs.  But it has been a mess for a long time.  It really started when this guy, Moses, showed up; it seems he had been gone a long time.  He was all excited because God had done something great in his life.  He told everyone that God knew about their problems and wanted to help them.

He went straight to the source of the problems.  Our hope went sky high. Then things got horrible.  Our water became contaminated; critters showed up and made our lives miserable.  They died then gnats and flies were everywhere.  It got better for us.  But we watched as sickness and the weather went bad all around us.  The neighbors started trying to take our stuff.  Our friend kept working with all of these problems, but as the problems kept coming we were still not free.

Our friend told us we should plan a party and cleanup our houses and be ready to move.  We were enjoying ourselves when the neighbors started showing up.  They told us we need to leave and started paying us to go.  They gave us whatever we asked for as long as we were leaving.

We tried to leave the country, but the roads out of town were blocked.  After a couple of days all of the neighbors decided we had been the cause of all of the problems and we needed to be taught a lesson.  They also wanted all of their stuff back.  God stopped them and opened up a way out.  The neighbors will not follow us now and we are out of the country.  That is why we are celebrating!”  Joshua told us this story before he went and helped our friend.

Passover to Pentecost – Dividing the Red Sea

Passover to Pentecost – Dividing the Red Sea        Week 1 Day 7

This is the day according to Jewish legend that the people of Israel went through the Red Sea.  This is still in the Feast of Unleavened Bread which was very practical because they were still in a hurry trying to get out of Egypt.  Then to add to the drama and to allow God to get more glory, Pharaoh was chasing them.   The additional glory would come when Pharaoh watched his army drown (I don’t think he leads his troops into the sea).

This post is not to debate if it could happen, or how it happened, but to see this as a shadow of baptism and part of the Great Commission.  Please see the post My Start to Out of Egypt for discussion and websites on the topic of going through the Red Sea.  I do believe this really happened.  My logic is simple – the Jewish people are an ancient and enduring people with a written history and the Red Sea and the Exodus is part of that history.  The Exodus story is recorded in many other books in the Bible (see the post Exodus in Other Books).  Since the Great Commission was given after Passover in the time of the Counting of the Omer we will talk more about it later.

Baptism

Baptism is a physical act of your free will that identifies you with the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus.  We as disciples are to baptize other disciples as part of teaching them the commands of Jesus.  In the New Testament, John was baptizing people in the Jordan when Jesus met His cousin.  John wanted Jesus to baptize him but “all righteousness” had to be fulfilled (Matthew 3:15).  Jesus had His disciples baptize people (John 3: 22), and the Book of Acts has many examples of people being baptized.

The Jews of Jesus’ time regularly practiced a ceremonial washing, which is what John was doing.  The Qumran sect, who wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls, practiced this type of washing.  Jesus was “washed” by John, it was necessary; so they are related but not the same.

Shadows from the Old Testament

  • The Flood in Genesis with Noah in a pitch covered boat
  • Moses in the Nile in a pitch covered basket (see Noah and Moses)
  • Moses and Israel passing through the Red Sea
  • Joshua and Israel passing through the Jordan River
  • Naaman (2 Kings 5) dipping in the Jordan River

A Hand or Four Fingers and a Thumb

Pope Francis has noted that ISIS hates and kills Christians; they don’t seem to care how you are baptized.

Sprinkled or dunked, infant or by choice, Matthew 28: 19 or Acts 10: 48 I will respectfully say that Jesus is Lord of Baptism!  Jesus gave instructions to His disciples and they followed them, we tend to complicate things!

http://www.christianitytoday.com/history/2008/august/what-is-pre-christian-history-of-baptismal-ceremony.html

Passover to Pentecost – Shabbat/ No Work

Passover to Pentecost – Shabbat/ No Work        Week 1 Day 6

The Sabbath or day of resting, another foundational stone of Judaism, was started by God at the end of His work of creation.  God wants His people to rest.  The concept of rest and holding one day a week as holy is a “God idea” not a “man idea.”  Genesis 2: 2 & 3 is the first Sabbath, but it is not mentioned again until Exodus 16 (see Week 1 Day 3).  It is then stated as the Fourth Commandment; then clarified and built on in 23:11, 31: 15, 34: 21, and 35: 2.  My personal opinion for some of this is God had to have this group of ex-slaves to rest and focus on Him.  Remember Exodus 16 dealt with the people having to “work” for food and they needed to rest and live in the miracle of the manna.

In Exodus 33: 14 God tells Moses that He will give him Rest.  I think this answer is interesting because Moses was talking about leading the people and finding favor with God.   God did give him what he wanted (see verse 17 and 19), but at first He was offering him rest!

The word “rest” in English is actually three different words in Hebrew.  Some refer to the actual day, while some are the act of resting, and some are a general purpose word that refers to being still.

I know Jesus purposely did miracles on the Sabbath to prove the point that He was Lord even of the Sabbath.  But He was chiding the Jews about all of the rules and regulations that have been made to define work.  This made the day bigger than it should have been.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shabbat

http://www.biblestudytools.com/dictionary/sabbath/

Passover to Pentecost – New Testament Passovers and Counting the Omer

Passover to Pentecost – New Testament Passovers and Counting the Omer        Week 1 Day 5

Passover and the other Feast are mentioned in the New Testament, most of them are connected with Passion Week and Jesus’ crucifixion.  Luke, in recording Paul’s travels also mentions the Feasts.

Paul

Paul uses the Feast as time markers in his travels.  Paul sailed after the Feast of Unleavened Bread in Acts 20: 6 and after the Fast (Day of Atonement) in Acts 27:9.  In 1 Corinthians 5: 6-8 Paul uses two of the elements of Passover to encourage us to walk in “sincerity and truth.”  He reminds us of the action of yeast and relates Jesus as our Passover lamb.

 Luke

            Luke in writing his gospel and Acts refers to Passover in chapter 22 with the death of Jesus.  But in Luke 2:41 he tells the story of Jesus staying in Jerusalem after Passover and staying in the Temple.  It is noteworthy that it took three days for Mary and Joseph to miss Him.  This relates to the waters of Marah when Israel could not find water to quench their thirst.  Luke starts Acts with the story of the Ascension which is during the Counting of the Omer and Pentecost.  The other story set in this time period is the arrest of Peter and the angel releasing him from jail (Acts 12).

John

John was writing to show Jesus as the Son of God.  He purposely highlights His miracles and he uses the Feast more than another other Gospel writer.  Using the Feast as time stamps will give you another layer of John’s work to show Jesus as the Son of God.

John 2:12 is set after the miracle of the water being turned into wine.  Jesus is in the Temple before Passover and cleans it of “yeast”, the merchants.  He will do this again just before His death.  From this story to 4: 54 is set in the Counting of the Omer.  The stories in this section shadow those of first fifty days and the guidelines established in Leviticus 23.  Nicodemus reflects the correcting of the “leaders” that Jethro encouraged Moses to establish and uses the story of the bronze snake to predict His death.  Jesus and the disciples then go to the country and proceed to baptize the crowds, which relates to Israel going through the Red Sea.  The Samaritan woman is next, she symbolizes the loaf of bread that is offered at Pentecost.  Drinkable water, food, and the harvest are included in this dialogue.  This section ends with Jesus healing an official’s son which is a picture of the consecration of the firstborn (Exodus 13).

Advance one year to John 6 and it is Passover time, again.  Jesus is feeding the five thousand and comparing Himself to manna and the Passover meal.  This comparison serves to thin out the crowds, much as the forty years did to the “unbelieving” generation.

John 7 is set six months later in the seventh month and the Feast of Tabernacles or Ingathering (Leviticus 23:33).  This Feast is set after ALL of the crops are harvested (barley, wheat, and the grapes and olives).  (The symbolism here is overwhelming, and truth be told I am not ready to write on the subject.)  “Stop judging by mere appearances, and make a right judgment” (7: 24 NIV).  Reduces the mindset that had developed a religion of works to one of seeking God.  Another reference to the Exodus is verse 37 & 38 when Jesus uses the water from the rock (Exodus 17) to describe Himself.

Several months will pass (to the first month of the year) and Jesus is at His final Passover in John 11: 55.  Lazarus has been raised from the dead and Jesus is ready to enter the time of “tending the Lamb and getting rid of the yeast” before Passover.  So from John 11 to the end of the book and on to Acts 2 is one very busy time period, possibly sixty days in length.  The timetable is a bit off but Jesus sending Judas away could be seen as cleansing the house of yeast.

it seems I miss one the first time, please see Passover to Pentecost to Persecution – Peter

Passover to Pentecost – Old Testament Passovers

Passover to Pentecost – Old Testament Passovers       Week 1 Day 4

Josiah celebrated the Passover to the Lord in Jerusalem. 2 Chronicles 35: 1(NIV)

The Passover had not been observed like this in Israel since the days of the prophet Samuel. 2 Chronicles 35: 18 (NIV)

King Josiah

Holidays are something celebrated and enjoyed, but they are not necessarily news worthy.  There are references to the Feast of the Lord, just not a lot of them.  Contrast this to the references of the Exodus.  (To be fair, Hezekiah did celebrate Passover five chapters before this one.)  Josiah was the last king of Judah who “did right in the eyes of the Lord.”  After cleaning up the Temple, the Torah had been found and he was going to do what was written in the Book.

The priest and Levites were in place and 36,700 animals were donated for the people to have a lamb.  (This would have meant about 367,000 people celebrating.)  Verse 18 must be a reference to it having been done on the correct day as Hezekiah’s was done on the “Second Passover” date.  Apparently King Saul, David, and Solomon let the practice of observing the Feast slip or it was not done to this extent (2 Chronicles 35: 17).

Ezra

Ezra 6:19 tells of the exiles who had returned from Babylon celebrating the Passover.  It seems to be a dual celebration because they were also thankful because the king of Assyria had become favorable toward them.  It could be that Josiah’s Passover may have had a positive effect on the people before they were taken into captivity. It may also be that Passover was being celebrated but not on large scale.

Ezekiel

In chapter 45 God is instructing Ezekiel to reestablish the Feast, sacrifices, and sanctify the Temple in preparation for Passover.     This wakeup call was effective because it continued into the time of Jesus.  I found it interesting that David’s descendent was referred to as a “prince” and not a king.

Samuel

There are no direct references to any of the Feast during his lifetime.  The verse from Josiah does make it sound like the people celebrated them during his life.  1 Samuel opens with the story of his father and mother, and it seems that Elkanah and his wives were observing the Passover and other Feasts.

There are other references to Passover that will be written about.