Everlasting Kingdom: Unraveling the Bible’s Secrets

“Messiah (Christ) Our Passover”?

“Keeping the Passover”: Celebrating it or Killing it?

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Back Next Chapter 3, Part 2 Preview: That those of us who believe in the Messiah should be celebrating His Passover should be common knowledge, yet that knowledge is quite rare, and of those with that understanding, most have been misled when it comes to the chronology. Even fewer consider what Passover is! When and how should we celebrate the it? While translators and teachers bear much of the blame, anyone with a good lexicon simply does not have much of an excuse for following blind guides—provided Elohim’s (God’s) spirit fans the flames of their curiosity.

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There is a second Hebrew word that has been translated as “keep” in Passover context and it also obscures the significance. Yeshua (Jesus) was put under surveillance—watched from the “tenth day” of the first month to the “fourteenth day” by the high priest with the intention of finding the right time to steal Him away and have Him killed. (Counting the three days that His grave was under surveillance by Roman guards makes exactly seven days of watching.) The word “keep” as in “keep it until the fourteenth day” simply does not indicate the seriousness of the concept, yet lexicons list “keep” because it was translated as such in the KJV.

Notice that the word for “keep” in reference to the Passover in Numbers 9:14 is the same word that is translated as “do” later in the same sentence. In fact, it was translated as “do” 1,333 times in the KJV. There are other similar uses for the word, but the numbers 8804 & 8799 indicate that only meanings applied to the Qal verb stem apply here and anywhere else in these 14 verses from Numbers.

In Part 1 we began a detailed look at the word “keep”.

Numbers 9:14 “‘If foreigners living among you want to keep the Passover to Yehovah [Jehovah], according to the statute of the Passover, and according to its ordinance, then they will do it. You must have the same statute for both the foreigners and the native-born. —The Gabriel Bible

So literally translated, “keeping” the Passover was literally “doing” the Passover. It required “work” and “preparation” even on those years (1 in 7) when it falls on the Sabbath. “Doing” the Passover meant killing a lamb in preparation for eating it on the Feast Day!

In Numbers 9:1-14, quoted toward the end of Part 1, the words “keep” and “kept” are bold.

If an interpretation of Strong’s 06213 was the intent of the KJV translators then they should have used the word “kill” instead of “keep” in this chapter as in: “[KILL] the Passover at its appointed ‘season’ [appointed place or appointed time]”.

These Scriptures show us exactly when the Passover lambs were killed. The Passover lambs were to be killed on the fourteenth of Aviv:

2 Chronicles 35:1 Josiah ‘celebrated’ the Passover to Yehovah in Jerusalem, and they killed the Passover lamb on the fourteenth day of the first month.

When on Preparation Day did they “do” the lambs?

The Messiah, our Passover was slain at precisely the same time that the lambs were being killed—from what we would call 3:00 PM until nightfall.

2 Chronicles 35:9-14 Also, Conaniah, and Shemaiah and Nethanel his brothers, and Hashabiah and Jeiel and Jozabad, the leaders of the Levites, gave the Levites 5,000 lambs and young goats and 500 bulls for the Passover offerings. 10 So when the service was ready, the priests stood in their place, and the Levites in their divisions, as the king had commanded. 11 They slaughtered the Passover lambs, and the priests sprinkled the blood they were handed, and the Levites skinned them. 12 They removed the burnt offerings, so they could present them to the divisions of the ‘ancestral’ houses of the rest of the people, to offer to Yehovah, as it is written in the book of Moses. They also did this with the bulls. 13 They roasted the Passover lambs over the fire according to the ordinance, and they boiled the kadosh offerings in pots, in kettles, and in pans, and carried them quickly to the rest of the people. 14 Afterward they prepared Passover offerings for themselves, and for the priests, because the priests, the descendants of Aaron, were busy offering the burnt offerings and the fat portions until night, so the Levites prepared for themselves, and for the priests the descendants of Aaron.

They did not begin killing the Passover Lambs at night (just after the sunset of the thirteenth, which began the fourteenth of Aviv, as so many teach) rather, they began killing the Passover Lambs “between the evenings” (which simply means in the afternoon as is so precisely explained in What Does “Between The Evenings” Mean? and more specifically at least that year at the “ninth hour”, (3:00 PM) and they prepared them “UNTIL NIGHT”. This link above shows that “between the evenings” can’t possibly mean “between sunset and dark” as the Samaritans believed. It means, as the Jews interpret it to mean—“in the afternoon”. It takes about 5 hours to spit-roast a small 30 pound lamb. A year old Passover lamb would weigh about twice as much.

Fortunately there are other Hebrew Scriptures related to the Passover that use alternate wording. “Between the evenings” isn’t the only indication that we have for the timing.

Deuteronomy 16:6 You must kill the Passover in the place where Yehovah your Elohim chooses to establish His name, in the evening as the sun is going down, at the Appointed Time [Moed] [the anniversary] of your exodus from Egypt.

We can see clearly here that the Passover was to be celebrated “in the evening” which is defined as when “the sun is going down”. It says nothing about the sun already “being” down. Of course, any time after 12:00 noon the sun is “going down”. That is why we call that time in English “afternoon”. The point is that the sun was still going down. “Evening” isn’t after the sun has already set tho it can mean the time immediately before sundown.

Most assuredly, Passover lambs were not killed after dark, as so many have falsely assumed. They were killed up until nightfall.

All of the Preparations had to be finished before sunset, even tho the roasting of the Passover Lamb would continue after the sun had set. This was in remembrance of the original zebak (sacrifice) of the firstborn. The people of Israel would have disobeyed Yehovah had they killed the Passover lambs after sunset!

After the lambs were killed, Israel was to begin roasting the lambs—still on the Preparation Day:

Exodus 12:8-9, 22 They must eat the flesh that night, roasted over a fire, with unleavened bread and with bitter herbs. 9 Don’t eat any of it raw, or boiled in water, it must be roasted over fire— its head, its legs and its inner parts. ... 22 Take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood in the basin, and brush the lintel and both sides of the doorframe with the blood from the basin. None of you are to go thru the doorway of your house until morning,

By now it is apparent that the Passover lambs were killed on the PREPARATION DAY for the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Preparation Day is the fourteenth day of Aviv, but the fourteenth isn’t a Feast! The “Feast of the Passover” could not occur without preparation. So the Preparation day is as important a part of Yehovah’s Torah (Law) as the eating of Unleavened Bread on the following seven days. Incidentally, all seven days should be regarded as Feast days, (but not all are Sabbaths) not just the first and last days, as explained in Festivals and Feasts—There is a Difference!

Right after the lambs were killed, the Israelites took some of the lamb’s blood and put it above and to both sides of the doorposts of their houses on the Preparation Day, before the sun had set!

Many of the people who were influenced by a certain strong 20th century advocate of Feast Day observance insist that at some fuzzy time in the past the Jews changed the day of their Passover celebration. However, they don’t seem to know when this may have happened. Some believe that it happened after Ezra’s time, since Ezra certainly would not have messed up the Passover, but in the time of Josiah it was still being faithfully observed at the end of the 14th. The Babylonians, being sun worshipers, began their days at sunrise. There may be evidence that a few of the Jews, when they returned to Jerusalem centuries before Yeshua, retained that practice but some claim that most of Judaism lost track of their days due to that Babylonian influence. By that reasoning wouldn’t they also have to doubt the timing of all of the Feast Days and the Sabbath as well?

Get the Leaven Out!

On Preparation day all of the leavening was to be removed from the Israelite’s dwellings, because they were also preparing for the Feast of Unleavened Bread. This was to occur before the Passover lambs were killed! These days, with our much larger houses my wife spends far more time “spring cleaning”. (Getting the leaven out is how the custom of spring cleaning originated).

There is some confusion about when the leaven should be removed from our homes because of the way that Exodus 12 :15 is worded. We have a situation similar to the Feast of Tabernacles where that seven day Feast is immediately followed by a special Eighth Day, only here the special First Day is followed by seven more days:

Exodus 12:15-18 ‘You must eat unleavened bread for seven days. On the first day [Preparation day] you must remove the leaven from your houses, because anyone who eats anything leavened from the first day until the seventh day will be ‘banished’ from Israel. 16 On the first day you must have a kadosh assembly, and on the seventh day another kadosh assembly. No work will be done on those days, other than making your meals. That’s all you can do. 17 You must celebrate the Feast of Unleavened Bread, because on this very day I brought you out of the land of Egypt like an army. So you’ll celebrate this day thruout your generations, by an ordinance forever. 18 In the first month, from the evening of the fourteenth day of the month until the evening of the twenty-first day of the month, you must eat unleavened bread.

There are actually two first days! There is the “First Day” of the eight day “Passover season”, which includes the Preparation Day (Aviv 14), and then there is the “First Day” of “the [seven day] Feast of Unleavened Bread”, that is clearly Aviv 15:

Leviticus 23:6 On the FIFTEENTH day of the same month [lunation] is Yehovah’s Feast of Unleavened Bread. For seven days you must eat unleavened bread.

Compare also:

Numbers 28:16-18 ‘Yehovah’s Passover falls on the FOURTEENTH day of the first month. 17 There is a Feast on the FIFTEENTH day of this month. For seven days the bread you eat must be unleavened. 18 On the first day there is to be a kadosh public assembly. You must not do any occupational work then.

This is one of the shortcomings of language. Most words have nuances of application. One use of the word “first” has to do with the events of a “former time”, specifically the Preparation Day and the second use of the word has to do with the numerical “first day” of the seven days of Unleavened Bread:

On Preparation day all of the leaven was removed and the lambs were killed. So the Preparation Day is as important a part of Yehovah’s “shadows of things to come” as are the Seven days of Unleavened Bread. This is especially evident concerning “Yeshua’s Supper”, that finishes the Preparation Day.

The next event is the Passover Feast. It is the very first meal eaten during the Feast of Unleavened Bread! As we have seen, the Passover Lamb was killed on the Preparation day, but was it eaten then as well? The Preparation day was reserved for the work of getting rid of anything with leavening in it, and killing the lambs. The slaughtering started that afternoon.

Exodus 12:5-6 & 8 Your lamb must be a year old male with no defects. You must select it from the sheep, or from the goats. 6 You must keep it until the fourteenth day of this month, when the entire assembly of the congregation of Israel will kill it in the evening. ... 8 They must eat the flesh that night, roasted over a fire, with unleavened bread and with bitter herbs.

Again, the “evening” that Exodus 12:6 is referring to is the evening part of the fourteenth day, but by definition we saw that this is only until “that night”, “as the sun is going down”. “Afternoon” would be a better translation. The Passover Feast began the very night following the “afternoon” when the lambs were killed.

Leviticus 23:6-7 On the fifteenth day of the same month [lunation] is Yehovah’s Feast of Unleavened Bread. For seven days you must eat unleavened bread. 7 On the first day you must hold a kadosh public assembly. You must not do any regular work.

When was the Exodus—14th,15th, Day or Night?

Numbers 33:3-4 3 They left Rameses in the first month, on the fifteenth day of the first month. On the very day after the Passover the Israelite people went out ‘triumphantly’ in the sight of all the Egyptians, 4 while the Egyptians were burying all the firstborn that Yehovah had struck down among them. Yehovah had executed judgment against their gods.

We are to remember the 15th day because of Yehovah’s deliverance for His children Israel, but far more importantly we can appreciate when the firstborn—not of Egypt—but the firstborn Son of Elohim died for us!

By Night?

One of the two primary mistranslations that cause people to dispute the chronology of the 14th—15th is the words “by night” in Deuteronomy 16:1.

Here is a quote from an article that I really liked that used to be online but is now lost in cyberspace:

“So, in the simplest terms possible, just what was the ‘causative action’ that occurred on night of the 15th, ‘causing’ it to be possible for Israel to ‘be delivered’ from Egyptian captivity? Would it not be the action taken by the Eternal (LORD) God when he destroyed the firstborn? Yes, it would! This verse does not tell us ‘when’, that is, at what time of the day or night that Israel left Egypt, but it does indicate when the ‘cause’ occurred, which made the departure from Egypt possible. The Hebrew is perfectly clear on this. It is unfortunate that the English isn’t clear. This particular verse was the very reason given by Herbert Armstrong in support of his ‘explanation’ of the events of the 14th & 15th.”

Deuteronomy 16:1 Celebrate the month of Aviv, and do Yehovah your Elohim’s Passover, because during the month of Aviv Yehovah your Elohim brought about your deliverance from Egypt [as a result of what happened] ‘by’ night.

Simply put, the following verses are the ones that translators translate correctly:

Exodus 12:22 & 51 Take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood in the basin, and brush the lintel and both sides of the doorframe with the blood from the basin. NONE OF YOU ARE TO GO THRU THE DOORWAY OF YOUR HOUSE UNTIL MORNING, ... 51 On that very day Yehovah brought the people of Israel out of the land of Egypt by their divisions

Exodus 13:3-4 Moses told the people, “Remember this day-the day you marched out of Egypt, out of the place of slavery, because by a powerful hand Yehovah brought you out of there. (Remember, don’t eat any leavened bread.) 4 Today, in the month Aviv, you’re leaving.

“Pillaging” The Egyptians

Did the Israelites spend the entire fourteenth day “borrowing” from the Egyptians, as many conclude? The Scriptures indicate that the Israelites received their compensation before the final plague!

Exodus 11:1-3 Yehovah told Moses, “I’ll bring one more plague on Pharaoh and on Egypt, afterward he’ll let you go. When he lets you go, he’ll drive you all out. 2 ‘Announce to’ the people that every man and woman should ask their Egyptian neighbors for their articles of silver and gold. 3 Yehovah gave the people favor in the view of the Egyptians. Moses was highly regarded in the land of Egypt, in the view of Pharaoh’s servants and everyone else.

The compensation for services rendered was not something that was done in haste! This is even more apparent when the tense is right.

Exodus 12:34-36 So the people picked up their dough before it was leavened, with their kneading bowls wrapped in clothing carried on their shoulders. 35 The Israelites had done [not “did”] as Moses had instructed. They had asked the Egyptians for silver and gold jewelry and for clothing. 36 Yehovah had given the people favor in the sight of the Egyptians, and they handed over whatever they asked for, and they stripped Egypt of its wealth.

Should We Kill Lambs?

Deuteronomy 16:1-6 Celebrate the month of Aviv, and do Yehovah your Elohim’s Passover, because during the month of Aviv Yehovah your Elohim brought about your deliverance from Egypt ‘by’ [because of the events of that] night. 2 You must offer the Passover ze’bak [sacrifice] to Yehovah your Elohim, from the flock or the herd, in the place where Yehovah chooses to establish His name. 3 Don’t eat leavened bread with it. You must eat unleavened bread with it for seven days, the bread of misery, because you left the land of Egypt in a hurry. This is how you can remember the day you left the land of Egypt ‘for the rest’ of your life. 4 No leaven should be seen in your possession within your territory for seven days, and none of the flesh of your offering from the evening of the first day will remain overnight until morning. 5 You must not zebak the Passover within any of the city gates that Yehovah your Elohim is about to give you. 6 You must kill the Passover in the place where Yehovah your Elohim chooses to establish His name, in the evening as the sun is going down, at the Appointed Time [Moed] [the anniversary] of your exodus from Egypt.

“You may not offer the Passover within any of your gates...”. This simply means don’t try this at home!

Verse 3 explains that this was a memorial specifically concerning the Exodus from Egypt and we now have even more amazing reasons to celebrate the Passover. But at that point in time there was no connection stated that would distinguish the Exodus Passover from Yeshua’s Passover (His crucifixion). Some of the added significance has been covered, but there is yet one great prophesied factor that needs to be examined—the siege of Jerusalem that “coincidentally” began on Passover.

In 66 AD the Jews rebelled against Rome. In 70 AD, after a 143 day siege that was begun at the Passover, a detachment of the Roman army of about 30,000 troops under Titus battered down the walls of Jerusalem and entered the city. They destroyed the city, including Herod’s (Yehovah’s) Temple—exactly as Yeshua had prophesied. The cities’ population and a great number of Passover pilgrims were brutally slaughtered. That holocaust numbered 600,000 people killed.

Luke 21:5-6 While some were talking about the Temple being adorned with beautiful stones and dedicated gifts, Yeshua told them, 6 “As for these things that you are admiring, the time will come when there won’t be a single stone left on another stone, that won’t be thrown down.”

The temple in Jerusalem was “in the place that Yehovah your Elohim chooses to cause His name to reside, there you’ll offer the Passover ...”. Prior to that Yehovah placed His name in Bethel. No substitute place can be “named” by a religious leader. Before the twelve tribes go into the land again there will be a new temple, and as Ezekiel prophesied, Israel will again literally “keep” the Passover.

Until Yehovah lives on earth again, He is placing His name on His followers individually and not “in Jerusalem”.

John 4:21, 23-24 Yeshua replied, “Woman, believe Me, the time is coming when you won’t worship the Father on this mountain or in Jerusalem. ... 23 But a time is coming, (and as of this writing, now is), when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. Father is looking for worshipers like that. 24 YHVH [Yehovah] is Spirit, and His worshipers must worship Him in spirit and in truth.”

Matthew 18:20 because where two or three have Assembled together in My name, I’m among them.

Eventually, both the inhabitants of New Jerusalem, as well as the city of New Jerusalem will be the place where Yehovah’s chooses for His name to reside, because His name will soon be written on some of us!

Revelation 3:12 I’ll make anyone who is victorious a pillar in the Temple of YHVH, and they’ll never be separated from the assembly, and I’ll write YHVH’s name on them, and the name of New Jerusalem that descends from the heavens, from YHVH, and My own new name.

This situation will happen again!

Pillar

Ezekiel 43:1-7 Afterward he led me to the gate facing east, 2 and I saw the splendor of the Elohim of Israel coming from the east. His voice sounded like the roar of ‘rushing’ water, and the land shone from His splendor! 3 What I saw was just like the phenomenon that I had seen when He came to destroy the city of Jerusalem [in Chapter 9], and the mode of revelation was like what I had seen by the Chebar River, and I fell facedown. 4 The splendor of Yehovah came into the Temple thru the gate facing east. 5 The spirit lifted me up, and she brought me into the inner courtyard, and I saw, the splendor of Yehovah filling the Temple. 6 I heard someone speaking to me from inside the Temple, while the man was standing beside me. 7 He said, “Human son, this is the place where My throne is and the place for the soles of My feet, where I will live among the Israelites forever. The nation of Israel will no longer defile My kadosh name, neither they, or their kings, by their prostitution, or with the dead bodies of their kings in their high places of worship,

This hasn’t been a how-to chapter on Passover, it has been a when-to chapter. There is just one more question that needs attention: Who should celebrate the Passover (as distinguished from the “Lord’s Supper”)?

All Israel was to do the Passover—men, women and children.

Exodus 12:26-27 And when your children ask you, ‘What does this ceremony mean to you?’ 27 tell them, ‘It’s the Passover ze’bak [sacrifice] to Yehovah, who passed over the houses of the Israelites in Egypt, when He struck the Egyptians, and spared our houses.’” Then the people knelt down and worshiped.

The Messiah’s Passover

For the most part, this chapter ends by simply presenting the Biblical texts about our Messiah’s Passover.

Passover for us today should focus on the circumstances bringing about Yeshua’s death on our behalf, particularly the bitter details of the account along with the promises inherent in His death that offer us the Promised Land of New Jerusalem and the Kingdom of Elohim. We’ll not dwell too much on the circumstances that eventually led ancient Israel to their “land flowing with milk and honey”. The “bitter herbs” are easily associated with the bitterness we should feel for our part in necessitating Yeshua’s ze’bak (sacrifice).

At Yeshua’s Supper we should read about why the zebak had to happen. On the Passover we should read about the conditions that led to the zebak itself, beginning with Yeshua’s arrest and ending with His burial. If you don’t understand why Yeshua’s very last words (usually phrased)—“My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”—are so very inspiring, then you really must read the explanation: Did God Really Forsake Yeshua Christ on the Cross? (and particularly in this instance my Disclaimer).

Of all of the kadosh times of the year, Passover is the only one with instructions that you can “make up for” if you are temporarily ill or “on a journey”. It can be observed on the 14th of the second month as the “Second Passover”. There is one other acceptable reason to commemorate the Second Passover—ignorance! Ignorance of the correct way to observe the Passover is why the Second Passover was begun. (Numbers 9:10-11) I’ll be doing that this year (2006)! A friend, during our 2006 Passover season, explained that because the New Year, as determined by aviv barley, can’t be determined months in advance, a person might not anticipate in advance the New Year beginning when it does. Rather than wait to plan a trip for the sighting of barley it is permissible “to take a shot” as to the date with the second month as a safety net.

The following prophecy contains the perfect Passover message.

Isaiah 52:13-15 thru Isaiah 53 My Servant will act wisely; He’ll be lifted up and highly exalted, and will be very high! 14 Just as many were appalled at You—His appearance was disfigured beyond human recognition, He didn’t even appear human— 15 so He’ll sprinkle many nations [with His blood]. Kings will will be speechless because of Him. They’ll see things they’d never been told about, and understand things that they’d never heard about. [Ignore chapter break] Isaiah 53: Who has believed our message? Who has the Arm [1] of Yehovah been revealed to? 2 He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground. There was nothing particularly stately or majestic about His appearance; nothing about His appearance that would have attracted our attention to Him. 3 He was despised, and rejected by humanity, a man of suffering who understood being grief stricken. He was despised like someone who people hide their face from; and we considered Him worthless. 4 Surely He has borne our sickness, and carried our sorrows, yet we considered Him stricken, struck down by Elohim, and punished. 5 But He was pierced for our rebellion. He was crushed for our wickedness. His punishment brought about our peace, and by His wounds we are healed. 6 We have all strayed like sheep. Each of us has turned our own way. Yet Yehovah has laid on Him the punishment for all of our sins! 7 He was oppressed, and He was afflicted, yet He didn’t ‘say a word’. He was led to the slaughter like a lamb, and like a sheep is silent before its shearers, He didn’t open His mouth. 8 He was taken away due to oppression and judgment, and as for His generation, who considered that He was cut off from the land of the living and struck down because of My people’s rebellion. 9 He was given a grave with the wicked, ‘buried’ in a rich man’s grave, tho He had done nothing violent, nor had He ‘spoken’ anything deceitful. 10 Yet it was Yehovah’s desired plan to crush Him, putting Him to grief; if it would render Him a sin offering. He’ll see His offspring, and prolong His days, and the desirable things of Yehovah will advance by His hand. 11 After the suffering in His life, He’ll see His accomplishment and be satisfied. My righteous Servant will justify many by what He has learned through suffering. He’ll bear their sins. 12 As a result, He’ll inherit the ‘survivors of many nations’ [2], and He’ll divide the spoils of the strong, because He poured out His life in death, and was considered a rebel, yet He bore the sins of many, and interceded for the rebels.

[1] There are equivalent metaphors in English. We call an indispensable associate a “right hand man,” and we refer to the enforcement of the Law as “the arm of the Law”. Yeshua (Jesus) is the Arm of the Torah, the enforcer!

[2] This verse was clarified by the oldest known Scriptures, the Aramaic Targums.

There are various theories about these passages. Some actually believe that Israel fulfilled this. The following links are quite interesting. I would recommend that you become aware of the arguments of others so that you can:

1 Peter 3:15 Be dedicated to our Master the Messiah in your thoughts. Always be ready to vindicate the expectation of your faith to anyone who demands an explanation for it, with gentleness and respect,

To see why Isaiah 53 can’t refer to Israel, and who it must be, click here.

To see quotations from ancient rabbinic sources that interpret Isaiah 53 as referring to the Messiah click here.

Some rabbinics realize that there is a suffering Messiah and a conquering Messiah. Eventually they’ll learn that “they” are both the same person.

To learn about the “Two-Messiah” theory of some rabbinic thinkers click here.

The grieving over the holocausts (past and future) will take on a different sentiment as Judah realizes that she killed her own Son, the Son of Elohim who could have continually delivered them and who will deliver many of them.

Zechariah 12:9-10 When that day comes I’ll begin to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. 10 Then I’ll pour on the dynasty of David, and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of favor and supplication. They’ll look at Me, the One they’ve pierced, and they’ll mourn for Him, like someone mourns for their only son, and they’ll grieve bitterly for Him, like someone cries over a firstborn.

Here is Matthew’s account of the circumstances that led to Yeshua being zebaked.

Matthew 27: In the morning, the high priests and the elders of the people gathered and conspired against Yeshua, about how they could put Him to death. 2 They tied Him up and led Him away and took Him to Pilate the Governor. 3 Then Judas, His betrayer, regretted what had happened when he saw that Yeshua was condemned to death. He quickly returned the thirty pieces of silver to the high priests and elders. 4 He said, “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood.” They replied, “What is that to us? Deal with it yourself.” 5 He hurled the silver into the Temple, left, and went out and hanged himself. 6 The high priests picked up the silver and said, “It isn’t lawful to put it into the treasury since it is blood money.” 7 So they decided to spend the money on the purchase of the Potter’s Field as a burial ground for strangers. 8 That’s why the field is called ‘the Field of Blood’ to this very day. 9 Then the words of the prophet were fulfilled [1], “I took the thirty shekels of silver, the price of the Precious One who the sons of Israel had priced, 10 and gave them for the Potter’s Field, as YHVH directed.” 11 Yeshua stood before the governor, and the governor asked Him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Yeshua answered, “It is as you say.” 12 Yet when the high priests and elders made accusations against Him, He didn’t reply. 13 Then Pilate asked Him, “Don’t You hear what they are charging You with?” 14 But He didn’t answer him, not even one word, to Pilate’s great amazement. 15 On each Feast day the governor customarily released to the people one prisoner—whoever they wanted. 16 They had in bonds a notorious prisoner named Bar Abas. 17 When the people had gathered, Pilate asked them, “Who should I release to you, Bar Abas or Yeshua who is called the Messiah?” 18 Pilate knew that it was out of envy that they had arrested Him. 19 As the governor was sitting in on his tribunal, his wife sent a message to him. It said, “Don’t allow an incident between you and that Righteous One, because I have suffered greatly today in a dream about Him.” 20 But the high priests and the elders persuaded the crowd to demand Bar Abas and destroy Yeshua. 21 The governor asked them again, “Which of the two should I release for you? And they shouted, “Bar Abas”. 22 Pilate asked them, “Then what should I do with Yeshua who is called the Messiah? They all shouted, “He should be crucified”. 23 The governor asked them, “But what evil has He done?” But they croaked all the more, “He should be crucified”. 24 So when Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere and that a riot was starting, he took some water and washed his hands in front of the crowd and said, “I’m innocent of the blood of this innocent Man. See to it yourselves. 25 All the people answered, “His blood is on us and on our children!” 26 Then he released Bar Abas to them, but he had Yeshua scourged with whips and handed Him over to be crucified. 27 Then the Governor’s soldiers took Yeshua into the Praetorium and the whole detachment surrounded Him. 28 They stripped Him and put a scarlet military robe on Him. 29 They twisted a crown of thorns and put it on His head and put a cane “scepter” in His right hand. They knelt in front of Him and shouted in mockery, “Hail, King of the Jews.” 30 They spit in His face and took the cane and hit Him on the head. 31 When they finished mocking Him, they took off the robe and put His own clothes on Him again, and led Him out to be crucified. 32 As they were leaving, they found a man from Cyrene whose name was Simon. They forced him to carry His cross. 33 They came to a place that is called Golgotha (which means means “The Skull”). 34 They offered Him vinegar mixed with gall to drink. But when he tasted it, He refused to drink it. 35 When they crucified Him, they divided His clothing by throwing lots. [A] 36 They sat down and watched Him there. 37 They placed over His head a written accusation against Him that said, “THIS IS YESHUA, THE KING OF THE JEWS.” 38 Two robbers were crucified with Him, one on His right and the other on His left. 39 Those who passed by insulted Him, shaking their heads, 40 and said, “You who would destroy of the Temple and rebuild it in three days, save Yourself. If you are YHVH’s Son, come down from the cross. 41 The high priests were also mocking Him, along with the Torah teachers and elders and Pharisees 42 and said, “He saved the lives of others but He can’t save His own life. If He is the King of Israel, He should come down from the cross and we’ll believe in Him. [B] 43 He trusts in YHVH, so He should rescue Him now if He wants Him, because He said, ‘I’m YHVH’s Son.’” 44 Even the marauders who were being crucified with Him insulted Him. 45 From the sixth hour [noon] until the ninth hour there was darkness over the entire land [3:00]. 46 About the ninth hour, Yeshua called out in a loud voice, “Aloha, Aloha [God], why have you spared me [2][3]?” 47 Some of the people standing there heard this and said, “He calls for Elijah”. 48 Immediately one of them ran and took a sponge and filled it with vinegar. Then he put it on a reed and gave it to Him to drink. 49 But the rest said, “Wait, let’s see if Elijah comes to rescue Him.” 50 Then Yeshua shouted out again in a loud voice and gave up His spirit. 51 Suddenly the curtain of the door of the Temple was torn in half from top to bottom, the earth shook and rocks split. 52 Graves were opened and the bodies of many kadishea [saints] who were sleeping in death arose. 53 After His resurrection they entered into the distinguished city and appeared to many. 54 When the centurion and those who were with Him guarding Yeshua saw the earthquake and the things that happened, they were terrified and said, “Surely this was YHVH’s Son!” 55 Many women were there watching from a distance, the same ones who had followed Yeshua from Galilee and had supported Him. 56 One of them was Mary from Magdala, also Mary the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee’s children. 57 As evening approached, Joseph, a rich man from Arimathea arrived, who was also a disciple of Yeshua. 58 This man went to Pilate and begged for Yeshua’s body. Pilate ordered that the body be given to him. 59 Joseph took the body and wrapped it in a long cloth of pure linen, 60 and laid it in his new tomb that was hewn out in the rock. He rolled a huge stone against the door of the tomb and left. 6l Mary from Magdala, and the other Mary were there, sitting over against the sepulcher. 62 The next day, the day after the Day of Preparation [4], the high priests and Pharisees gathered before Pilate, 63 and told him, “Master, we remember that this impostor said while He was alive, ‘After three days I will rise.’ 64 So give orders for the tomb to be guarded until the third day, because His disciples might come and steal Him away at night and tell the people that He has risen from the dead. The last delusion would be worse than the first.” 65 Pilate told them, “You have soldiers. Go and guard it as securely as you know how.” 66 So they went to secure the tomb. They sealed the stone and posted guards.

[1] This should say “the prophet”, instead of the Greek’s “the prophet Jeremiah”, since it is clearly a reference to Zechariah 11:12-13. Jeremiah 19:1 mentions a “potters vessel”, but not at all in the same context. Jeremiah 32:9 mentions someone buying a field in Anathoth for “seventeen shekels of silver”, but again the context isn’t remotely related to Judas’ betrayal, convoluted rationalizations aside. [2] Yeshua was paraphrasing Psalm 22, as explained off site: Did God Really Forsake Jesus Christ on the Cross? [3] Greek translations of the Aramaic left this statement in the Aramaic, “Eli, Eli, lemana shabakthani?” English transliterated spellings vary widely. [4] Preparation Day (v.62) is always associated with Passover. [A] “According to some of the Greek copies, there is added, this, ‘that so might be fulfilled that which was spoken by the prophet David, they distributed My garments among them, and on My vesture they cast the lot.’” This addition isn’t found in four of the most ancient editions of the Aramaic Testimony, and it was put in the margin of the more modern editions. It was doubtless a modern addition to the Aramaic Testimony, borrowed from the Greek Translator. [B] In some editions, “so that we can see and believe in Him.”

The happy ending for all of us is the resurrection. This is our only hope as well.

Matthew 28:1-7 After the Sabbaths [1], as the first of the Sabbaths [Gr. Sabbaton] was dawning, Mary of Magdala and the other Mary went to see the tomb. 2 Then there was a powerful earthquake, because a Messenger of YHVH had come down from heaven and came and rolled the stone away from the door and sat on it. 3 His appearance was like lightning and His clothing as white as snow. 4 The guards were so shaken that they became like dead men. 5 The spirit messenger said to the women, “Don’t be afraid! I know that you are looking for Yeshua who was crucified. 6 He’s not here because He has been aroused from the sleep of death, just as He predicted. Come and see the place where our Master was lying. 7 Then go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead. He’s on His way to Galilee now! You’ll see Him there as I told you.

[1] This would include the weekly Sabbath and the First Day of Unleavened Bread.

The next passage describes a time when “all Israel and Judah” began to celebrate the Passover after a long period of indifference. While the people were not prepared to seek Yehovah, He was willing to atone for their apathy because their wise leader Hezekiah had stirred them to action. This is reminiscent of:

1 Corinthians 11:28 “But scrutinize yourselves! Each of you should scrutinize your own genuineness before eating this bread and drinking from this cup,

2 Chronicles 30:17-19 Many of the people hadn’t purified themselves, so the Levites were in charge of killing the Passover lambs for everyone who was unclean, to dedicate their lambs to Yehovah. 18 The majority of the people, mostly from Ephraim, Manasseh, Issachar, and Zebulun, hadn’t purified themselves, yet they ate the Passover contrary to the Writings. But Hezekiah had prayed for them, saying, “May Yehovah, who is good, pardon everyone 19 who is mentally prepared to seek their Elohim, Yehovah, the Elohim of their ancestors, even if they aren’t clean according to the purification rules of the Kadosh Place.

For anyone who has been indifferent or ignorant about Yehovah’s kadosh time—Passover is a good time to resolve to change. No doubt He’ll be at the Feast!

John 11:55-56 The Passover of the Jews was near, and many went up from the villages to Jerusalem before the Feast to purify themselves. 56 They were looking for Yeshua, and saying to one another as they stood in the temple, “What do you think? Will He avoid coming to the Feast?”

I plan to begin eating lamb and bitter herbs from here on out at the Passover. It will not be ceremonially killed but it will help to differentiate the Supper of the 14th from the Feast of the 15th. It is such a simple thing to do to mark this event that has lasted from antiquity and will continue far into the future. While some may argue that it isn’t necessary to eat Lamb and bitter herbs on Yeshua’s Passover, I believe that it is particularly wise to positively reinforce in our minds the distinction between Passover and the Yeshua’s Supper in that very manner—particularly if you were duped for years.

I would be interested in hearing from anyone who celebrates both the Yeshua’s (Jesus’) Supper and His Passover. I’d particularly be interested in hearing about what you do in the way of traditions, not that every tradition must be spelled out Biblically, but certainly nothing borrowed from paganism would be appropriate. The Sader plate with that egg thing reminds me of Easter eggs. What have you found?

If you are wondering if there is a distinction between Passover and “the Night to be Much Observed”, as the KJV puts it, you should check out When Did Ancient Israel Keep the Passover?

Here is an interesting link on Bitter Herbs. I think that the “traditional” Jewish horseradish is an excellent choice.

 
The End
Lon Martin
5/13/06
 

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