This Easter is a time to remember the Truth concerning the Passover and how it relates to believers in Christ. The Celebration of the Resurrection is something we have been remembering since 32AD, when our Lord Jesus Christ died for our sins on the cross and rose from the dead unto eternal life on the third day for our justification, Rom 4:25.
Unfortunately, the resurrection of Jesus has been masked and downplayed by the enemy to the point that “Easter”, with its bunnies and eggs, has now taken first place above the remembrance of our Lord and the Truth of His death and resurrection.
But, if we can separate ourselves from the lusts (ἐπιθυμιά) thereof and commit ourselves to His will, 1 Jn 2:17, let us therefore abide in His Word and understand the Truth of the Passover (or as we know it, Easter).
On the 14th of Nissan, 32AD, or by modern day calculations, Thursday April 10th, 32AD, our Lord Jesus Christ was sacrificed on the cross as the Lamb of God on the Day of Preparation, Jn 19:14, in order that He might be the final sacrifice for sin for all those who would believe in Him, Jn 3:16, 1 Jn 4:9-10, Rom 5:8. Notice that this was a Thursday crucifixion and not on Friday. We know that Jesus had to be in the heart of the earth, Hell, for three days and three nights according to Jesus’ very own words, Matt 12:40. You cannot get three days and three nights from Friday, but that is not entirely important in our discussion at the present time.
Jesus died on the 14th of Nissan. He is our Passover, 1 Cor 5:7, the Lamb of God sent to take away the sins of the world, Jn 1:29. But why did Jesus die on the Passover rather than another Jewish holiday? For instance, Yom Kippur is the Day of Atonement for Jews. Since Jesus died for our sins, at a quick glance it seems fitting that He might have been the sacrifice on this day instead. So what is special about the 14th of Nissan, Passover?
This answer involves us reading the original account when the Passover commenced. We can read this from Exodus chapter 12 just before the final 10th plague of Egypt. God told Moses that after nine devastating plagues, this 10th plague would be worse by far. He would kill all the first born in the land of Egypt in order for Pharaoh to finally let the Israelites go. God told Moses that only those who would sacrifice a lamb without blemish and cover their door posts and lintels of the house with the blood of the lamb would be safe from this plague. God told Moses that the destroyer, the judgement of God would pass-over those whose house was covered in the blood of the lamb, Ex 12:23, 27.
Does this sound familiar? Of course it does! This is exactly how the blood of Jesus, the Lamb, operates in our lives. All those who choose to cover themselves in the blood of Jesus have been, and will be passed-over by the judgement and wrath of God concerning sin.
Let us take a closer look at the account in Exodus 12. The English translation in the King James is a good translation, but I am using the Greek Septuagint because the Greek language is so rich, it gives us a perfectly clear understanding of the original Hebrew text. I want to point out a couple of verses from Exodus 12. The first is the latter part of verse 11.
Exodus 12:11b (NKJV) … It is the Lord’s Passover.
The Septuagint gives us a little more detail by saying,
Exodus 12:11b (LXX) … πασχα ἐστὶν κυρίῳ.
πασχα is in the nominative case making it the subject of the sentence, however κυρίῳ is in the dative case so we would not translate this as the Lord’s Passover but rather as the Passover by the Lord. In other words, God is giving us the provision for the Passover, thereby giving us the covering so His wrath and judgment concerning sin would pass-over all who are in the house in the blood.
This brings us to the next verse of discussion, Ex 12:13.
Exodus 12:13a (NKJV) Now the blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you are.
Exodus 12:13a (LXX) καὶ ἔσται τὸ αἷμα ὑμῖν ἐν σημείῳ ἐπὶ τῶν οἰκιῶν, ἐν αἷς ὑμεῖς ἐστε ἐκεῖ,
And the blood (of the Lamb) will be to you a sign upon the houses in which you are in this one place.
God has appointed one place of refuge from the terrible plague. This is a predetermined place sanctified by God as holy, covered by the blood of the Lamb. Notice the blood is not on the person but on the house, and those who choose to be in the house covered by the blood will be saved. The same is true with us today concerning our eternal salvation. The blood of the Lamb, Jesus, is on the house of God, not on the individual person. God predestined the blood of the Lamb, before the foundation of the world, Rev 3:8, to be on the house and all those who choose to be in the house of God, or more specifically, in Jesus, Jn 15, will be saved. The individual has not been predestined, but rather the place of refuge, the propitiation for sin is that which has been predestined. Paul uses this same terminology in his letter to the Ephesians describing the household of God, Eph 2:19-22. That we are being fitly joined together in Him as one body together with Him for all eternity covered by the blood of Jesus.
Let us continue with our study from Exodus 12.
Exodus 12:13b (NKJV) … And when I see the blood, I will pass-over you; and the plague shall not be on you to destroy you…
Exodus 12:13b (LXX) … καὶ ὄψομαι τὸ αἷμα καὶ σκεπάσω ὑμᾶς, καὶ οὐκ ἔσται ἐν ὑμῖν πληγὴ τοῦ ἐκτριβῆναι …
“When I see the blood” I love this phrase! God looks at us thru the blood of Jesus. He doesn’t see our sin when He sees us, He sees the blood of Jesus and thru this blood we are perfect, righteous and holy in the eyes of our Father!
Now, let’s focus on the word pass-over in verse 13. The Greek word translated pass-over is not πασχα but σκεπάσω, meaning to cover, hide, shelter. Jesus, namely the blood of Jesus, is our shelter, our refuge, just as He covers us with His feathers, and under His wings we take refuge, Ps 91:4, so also are we covered by the precious blood of Jesus from the wrath and destruction of the judgement of sin, 1 Pet 1:18-19.
So now when we read 1 Corinthians 5:7
1 Corinthians 5:7b …For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us.
We now have a much better understanding why Jesus is our Passover and why Jesus was sacrificed on Passover and not any other Jewish holiday. In fact, when we look at this verse in the Greek it gives us more Truth.
1 Corinthians 5:7b καὶ γὰρ τὸ πάσχα ἡμῶν ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν ἐθύθη Χριστός·
Paul is making this abundantly clear that our Passover is the sacrifice of Jesus. This is made evident by not only Paul’s words but also the word order he uses. The subject of this sentence is Christ, Χριστός, but notice it is at the very end of the verse. In English, word order is crucial so it must be placed at the front of the sentence, however in Greek, Paul uses the nominative case to tell us Christ is the subject, but by placing Χριστός at the end, Paul is making a point to emphasize the fact that Jesus died as our Passover. Paul also reiterates the fact that it was for us. He doesn’t just say that Christ is our Passover, He continues saying Christ is our Passover on behalf of us, ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν. Jesus died for us that we might live with Him for all eternity. It was for us that He came to this earth, it was for us that He died as our Passover, and it was for us that He rose from the dead that we might be the righteousness of God to all those who believe in Jesus.
How precious is the Blood of the Lamb slain as our Passover on behalf of us so that if we abide in God’s house covered by the Blood of the Lamb, we are cleansed from sin, and the wrath and judgment of God concerning sin is passed-over us for all eternity!
Happy Passover and Resurrection Day!
The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all, Amen
Ἡ χάρις τοῦ Κυρίου ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ μετὰ πάντων υμῶν. ἀμην.