Why do we celebrate Passover?
Here's 3 reasons that we celebrate as believers in Jesus:
1. The Bible instructs us to:
In Exodus 12:14 God tells the people of Israel that Passover "will be a day for you to always remember. I want you and all generations after you to commemorate this day with a festival to Me. Celebrate this feast as a perpetual ordinance, a permanent part of your life together." As Jesus spends his last moments with his disciples they are celebrating... you guessed it, Passover. It is at this meal that Jesus tells the disciples to take the bread and wine (a normal part of the Passover meal) in order to remember his death and resurrection from that time forward. The Bible tells us in Romans 11 that we have been "grafted into" the people of God as a wild olive branch is grafted onto an olive tree. Ephesians 2:11-16 puts it like this..."Don’t forget that you Gentiles used to be outsiders...In those days you were living apart from Christ. You were excluded from citizenship among the people of Israel, and you did not know the covenant promises God had made to them. You lived in this world without God and without hope... He [Jesus] united Jews and Gentiles into one people when, in his own body on the cross, he broke down the wall of hostility that separated us...Now all of us can come to the Father through the same Holy Spirit because of what Christ has done for us."
2. To understand the beauty of the cross
God's deliverance of His people from Egypt is a picture of our ultimate deliverance from the bondage of sin and death through Jesus our savior. God released ten plagues in Egypt because of Pharaoh's refusal to obey His word to "let His people go so that they could worship Him". The tenth and final plague was death to all the first born sons, but Israel was instructed to take the blood of a spotless lamb and put the blood in the shape of a cross on the doorpost of their homes. In doing so, death would "pass over" their families. Jesus is the final spotless lamb that was slain in order that death would "pass over" all who have placed their faith in Him! Egypt is a symbol in the Bible for bondage. When we are released from the bondage of the enemy we are saved from death and able to worship God as His covenant people. What an amazing picture of God's salvation!
3. Passover was celebrated by the first Christians for centuries
It is very clear from the Apostle Paul's personal practice and instructions to the churches that Passover (along with the other yearly feasts) was a regularly celebrated occasion in the gentile churches. (Acts 12, 18, 20; 1 Cor 11, 16) Historians have also verified the significance of these feasts in early church life. During the Roman reformation in the early 3rd Century all signs of Jewish heritage were intentionally removed and replaced by European substitutes for various political and cultural reasons. Through persecution and force many of the vital parts of our heritage were forbidden. Thankfully, we live in a time where we are able to restore many of the beautiful traditions that have been lost and may seem foreign in our churches now.
All in all, we believe that there is great power in paying attention to what the Bible calls "Appointed Times" of the year. We hope you will join with us as we remember Christ's death and victory through the cross!