Today many Christians are
seeking the biblical Jewish roots of their faith in Yeshua
(Hebrew for Jesus). One of the primary ways in which
Yeshua is revealed in the Old Covenant (Hebrew "Tenach")
scriptures is through the biblical feasts of the Lord
listed in Lev. 23.
There are seven annual
feasts listed in Lev. 23. Three of them are observed in
the early spring, one in the late spring and three more in
the fall. (ALL OF THESE FEASTS, IN A VERY SPECIAL WAY,
REVEAL GOD'S TIMELINE FOR THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD.)
The first three feasts of
the Lord in the early spring are Passover, Unleavened
Bread and Firstfruits (“Bikkurim” in Hebrew). They point
toward the crucifixion of Yeshua, who was without sin, and
towards the resurrection of the Messiah being the
“firstfruits from the dead” according to I Cor. 15:20.
The fourth feast of the
Lord in the late spring is called the Feast of Weeks
(Shavuot in Hebrew). This feast is an agricultural
festival, but it also commemorates the giving of the Law
(God's Torah) to Moses and the children of Israel at Mt.
Sinai . The giving of the Law pointed toward the
outpouring of the Holy Spirit, which also took place on
the very same day as the Feast of Shavuot was being
celebrated in Jerusalem about 1,500 years later, according
to Acts 2. This, of course, is the Day of Pentecost, but
its roots are found in the biblical Jewish Feast of Weeks.
This is also a fulfillment
of the word of the Lord through the prophet Jeremiah in
“Behold the days are
coming when I will make a new covenant with the House of
Israel and with the House of Judah …this is the covenant I
will make with them in those days says the Lord…I will put
my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts…and
they will all know me from the least to the greatest.”
This is exactly what God
did on Shavuot (the Day of Pentecost) for all of us – and,
of course, the “Ruach Ha Kodesh” (the Holy Spirit) is only
given to those who have faith in Yeshua Ha Mashiach, Jesus
the Messiah, the precious Passover Lamb of God who is also
risen from the dead as King of kings and Lord of lords.
As you can see, the first
four biblical feasts of the Lord, listed in Lev. 23, not
only pointed toward, but have been totally fulfilled in
the first coming of the Messiah.
The three fall festivals
are called the Feast of Trumpets (Rosh Hashanah), the Day
of Atonement (Yom Kippur), and the Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot).
These feasts have been partially fulfilled in the first
coming of the Messiah, but will totally be fulfilled in
His second coming.
Yesterday we looked at a
brief overview of the seven major annual feasts of the
Lord, listed in our bibles in Lev. 23.
We also saw how they
revea,l in a very special way, God's “timeline” for the
history of the world (THE FEASTS, THEMSELVES, ARE CALLED
“GOD'S APPOINTED TIMES AND SEASONS” ACCORDING TO LEV.
Furthermore, and most
importantly, we saw how all of these feasts point toward
and are fulfilled in the Messiah Jesus (Yeshua in Hebrew).
Today I would like to
elaborate a little more on the first of these seven annual
festivals – the feast of Passover (pronounced “Pesach” in
According to Ex. 12, God
instructed the Israelites to take the “blood of a lamb”
and put it on the doorposts of their houses – and that
when He saw the blood, He would “pass over” their houses,
and spare them the plague that was coming upon Egypt – God
was also now preparing to deliver the children of Israel
from 400 years of slavery and bondage to Pharaoh and the
This has great application
for believers in Yeshua today, whether Jew or Gentile,
because Yeshua (Jesus) is our Passover Lamb, the Lamb of
God who takes away the sins of the world!
OTHER CONNECTIONS WE CAN
MAKE FROM THE JEWISH FEAST OF PASSOVER AND HOW IT APPLIES
TO US AS BELIEVERS IN YESHUA ARE AS FOLLOWS:
1) Through the blood of the
Lamb, applied to the doorposts of their homes, God
delivered the Israelites from Pharaoh, who held them in
*Through the blood of
Yeshua, shed on a wooden cross (the tree of sacrifice),
God has delivered us from Satan (the Pharaoh of this
world) and from a life of bondage to him.
2) the Feast of Passover
was to be observed on the 14 th day of the Hebrew month is
Nisan (according to Ex. 12:6 and Lev. 23:5).
*Yeshua (Jesus) died
precisely on the 14 th day of Nisan, as our Passover Lamb
3) When the Israelites left
Egypt , it was a time of “new beginnings” for them, a
whole new life in a new “promised land.”
*The blood of Yeshua, our
Passover Lamb, initiated a time of new beginnings for us –
a whole new life in a new “promised land” – the Kingdom of
God . II Cor. 5:17 says, “If anyone is in the Messiah, he
is a new creation, old things have passed away, behold all
things have become new! In Ex. 12, God also gave specific
requirements for the Passover Lamb itself.
a) It was to be chosen four
days before Passover
b) It was to be a male,
without blemish or defect
c) It was to be slaughtered
by all the people at twilight
d) Not a bone of its body
was to be broken
began to take a closer look at the biblical Jewish Feast
of Passover and how it points toward Yeshua (Jesus), our
1) That the blood of the
Lamb was to be shed on the 14 th day of the month of Nisan
(Ex 12:6 and Lev. 23:5) –
precisely the day Yeshua was crucified
2) How through the blood of
the Lamb God delivered the children of Israel from a life
of bondage to Pharaoh. * Through the blood of Yeshua,
our Passover Lamb, God has delivered us from a life of
bondage to Satan, the Pharaoh of this world.
3) We also saw how the
blood of the Lamb initiated a “time of new beginnings” for
the Israelites – a whole new life in a new promised land.
*Through the blood of Yeshua we, too, are “born again”
– we have a whole new life as citizens of the “ kingdom of
In Ex. 12 God also spelled
out specific requirements for the Passover Lamb itself.
The Lamb was to be chosen on the 10 th day of Nisan and go
on public display four days before Passover (Ex. 12:3).
Yeshua went on public display four days before
Passover when He entered Jerusalem on the 10 th of Nisan.
Ex. 12:5 says that the
Passover Lamb had to be a male, without defect (blemish).
Yeshua was examined by many during the last four days of
His life, but they couldn't find anything wrong with Him,
such as Pontius Pilate who said, “I find nothing wrong
with this man” (Luke 23:4), and Judas Iscariot, who, when
returning the 30 pieces of silver (Matt. 27:4) cried out,
“I have betrayed innocent blood!.” The reputed cross thief
said to the other cross thief (Luke 23:41 ), “We deserve
the punishment we are getting, but this man has done
nothing wrong.” Even the Roman centurion (Matt 27:54) said
after Yeshua had died, “Surely this man was the Son of
God,” indicating Yeshua's perfection.
In Ex. 12:6 we see another
one of God's requirements concerning the Passover Lamb,
that it was to be killed at “twilight” on the 14 th day of
Nisan. In the Hebrew language twilight reads “BAIN HA-ARBAYIM'
which literally means “between the two evenings.” Yeshua
was crucified during the 6 th hour of the day between the
two evenings on the 14 th of Nisan, according to Luke
Also, according to Ex.
12:6, the Lamb was to be killed by all the people (the
whole community). Yeshua (Jesus) died for all sinners; we
are all responsible for His death. Romans 3:23 says that
“all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Exodus 12:46 says that not
a bone of the Passover Lamb was to be broken. The legs of
the two cross thieves were broken, but not Yeshua's, thus
fulfilling the scripture. In every way, Yeshua fulfilled
all the requirements of the Torah, even to the smallest
detail, to be the Passover Lamb of God. He is the Torah of
God made flesh in the person of Jesus of Nazareth, the
Spoken Word, which became the Written Word, which became
the Living Word!
For the past
few days we have been taking a closer look at the Jewish
Feast of Passover and it's fulfillment in Yeshua the
Another biblical feast,
very closely associated with Passover, is the Feast of
Unleavened Bread, pronounced in Hebrew, “Chag Ha Matzot.”
This feast also points directly to Jesus, as do all of the
Feasts of the Lord. Passover, as we've seen, is observed
on the 14 th day of the Hebrew month of Nisan, according
to Lev. 23:5, and the Feast of Unleavened Bread is
observed for seven more days, from the 15 th though the 21
st of Nisan, according to Lev. 23:6. During the entire
eight day period only bread without “leaven” could be
As we all know, “leaven” in
the Bible is symbolic of sin. In the Hebrew language
leaven is referred to as “chametz”, which means “something
that ferments and leads to bitterness in the end.” Sin in
our lives will continue to ferment and lead to bitterness
in the end, for “the wages of sin is death” (Rom. 6:23 )
Of course, Yeshua was
without sin, and right away we can see how the Feast of
Unleavened Bread points toward Him, especially as it is
directly connected with the Feast of Passover, which
points toward the blood of Yeshua that was shed for all
sinners. Another way of putting that is He, even though He
was sinless, became “the bread of affliction” for all of
During Passover and the
Feast of Unleavened Bread we eat unleavened bread, which,
in Judaism, is commonly called Matzah. If you look closely
at a piece of Matzah you will see that it is “striped,
pierced and bruised,” a picture of God's suffering Messiah
in Isa. 53 who was “pierced for our transgressions,
bruised for our iniquities and by whose stripes we are
Another Jewish tradition,
based on Ex. 12:18-20, is removing all the leaven from
Jewish homes shortly before Passover. This ceremony is
called in Hebrew “Bedikat Chametz” which means “removing
Isn't it interesting that
just before Passover, Jesus entered the temple in
Jerusalem and overturned the tables of the money-changers
and the seats of those who sold doves (Matt. 21:12 ). What
was He doing? He was cleansing His Father's house from all
leaven, just before Passover and the Feast of Unleavened
I'd like to leave you for
today with a very interesting scripture found in Ex.
12:19. “For seven days, no leaven is to be found in your
houses, since whoever eats what is leavened, that person
shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel , whether
he is a stranger or a native of the land.” The word
“stranger” reads in Hebrew “geyr”: one who is a foreigner;
an alien; one who is from the nations; a Gentile.
God commanded for future
generations that any Gentiles living amongst the
Israelites should celebrate the Feast of Passover and
Unleavened Bread with the Jewish people, a picture of
unity in the Messiah.
As you analyze the
scriptures, you will see that all the feasts of the Lord
are for Jew and Gentile.
Overview of the week