11’now you shall eat it in this manner: with your loins girded, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and you shall eat it in haste — it is Yahweh’s Passover. 12’For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments I am Yahweh.
The descendants of Jacob had been in Egypt for 430 years when Yahweh gave instructions to Moses on how they were to observe their first Passover meal. Pharaoh, the ruler of Egypt at the time, was treating the Israelites harshly resulting in the Israelites crying out to Yahweh because they were suffering at the hands of the Egyptians. The scriptures relate that Yahweh selected Moses, an Israelite reared by an Egyptian princess, to bring the Israelites out of Egypt and take them to a land of Milk and honey called Canaan.
7 Yahweh said, “I have surely seen the affliction of my people who are in Egypt and have given heed to their cry because of their taskmasters, for I am aware of their sufferings. 8 “So I have come down to deliver them from the power of the Egyptians, and to bring them up from that land to a good and spacious land, to a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of the Canaanite and the Hittite and the Amorite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite. 9 “Now, behold, the cry of the sons of Israel has come to Me; furthermore, I have seen the oppression with which the Egyptians are oppressing them.
Yahweh instituted Passover for a very important reason, there has been much written by men of various religious beliefs concerning this event, and there is much disagreement about how and when Passover is to be observed, if at all. Passover, according to the scriptures, is to be held in close proximity to another special occurrence instituted by Yahweh he named the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread occur in the spring of the year, but much controversy exists among religious groups on how these events are to be observed, or even if they are to be observed. Christians, for the most part, don’t observe Passover or the Feast of Unleavened bread. There are different reasons why Christians feel they are not compelled to observe these days, as the Bible instructs, but overall Christians think they are gentiles and these scriptural days apply only to Jews. Christian leaders and writers, since early in the first century have instructed that Easter is the holy day their followers are to observe annually in the spring. It is safe to say that Easter is one of the most observed days by Christians and that most of them do not understand the origin of Easter or why they keep it in the manner and at a time not instructed in the scriptures.
Christians also observe, in various manners, another event they generally believe is important to their salvation; they call this even the Lord’s Supper. The different denominations of Christianity observe this event at different times and use different methods in observing this occasion. The Lord’s supper has been one of the most controversial subjects in the history of religion. In fact, during history of Christianity many people have been killed because they would not observe the Lord’s Supper as instructed by Christian Church leaders.
Many people are either not aware or just lightly understand the history of the Passover and the part it has played in the religious history of people. Most do not understand the symbolic significance that Elohim has placed on the Passover and the importance the Passover observance to salvation for human kind.
Many scholars, Bible scholars, educators, religious leaders, and just plain people, with their own opinions have written about the Passover. They have covered it from many aspects and viewpoints, yet you will be hard pressed to find anyone who relates the Passover observance to the doctrine of First-Fruits salvation. Never heard of First-Fruits salvation; you are not alone.
If you were to ask most Christians, Jews, and even those people who use the Hebrew names of the Father and Son, they would not know very much, if anything, about the First-Fruits depicted in scriptures. The scriptures reveal that the First-Fruits will hold a special place and play an important part in Elohim’s plan of salvation for mankind. According to the scriptures, the First-Fruits play an important part in Yahweh’s plans for mankind yet, religious leaders write very little and speak almost nothing about them?
More about the First-Fruits later, at this point another question to ponder is why do the various religious organizations keep the Passover and related days so differently? The first Passover described in Exodus seems to be vastly different than the last Passover supposedly held by the Messiah just prior to his death as recorded in the New Testament.
Most Christians don’t keep the Passover; instead, they observe The Lord’s Supper, which they have been taught, was instituted by the Messiah as a replacement for the ‘Jewish Passover.’ Many Jews today observe a modified form of the Passover while Christian religions have instituted the Lord’s Supper that is held at different times depending on the denomination. Easter, the day celebrated by most Christian religious groups, is generally fixed on a Sunday in the months of March or April depending on which part of the world you live.
How and where can we learn the truth? The first simple answer should be the scriptures themselves. After all, If Yahweh wanted people to know how to keep rules or commands, which many think, are now void, would he not have plainly told them in writing? A point of interest is that while the Bible is available too much of the world, not everyone seems to understand it in a joint collective manner. It should be startling news to Christians that Easter, a most celebrated day by Christians is not even in the scriptures except for an error in the King James Version of the Bible.
By just studying the Passover it is apparent that there are various beliefs about how the Passover is kept, if kept at all. The Jews observe Passover on the 15th of the first month of the lunar year. To know more about the lunar year just go to a good encyclopedia and you can learn that is how early in man’s history the measured year was based on the moon instead of the sun.
Various attempts were made by man to measure the year differently because the moon circles the earth in approximately 30 days while the earth circles the sun in approximately 365 days thus leaving a discrepancy between a lunar year and a solar year.
When Yahweh gave the Israelites instructions on how to keep the holy days, he established and revealed in the scriptures, he used the moon and the crops to measure a year. The system was simple enough since Israel, at that time, was a people who could view the moon almost every day and could observe when the crops would ripen. Yahweh based his holy days to worship upon the ripening of the crops at the beginning of the year that set the cycle of harvest for the remainder of the year. Yahweh knew that the number of days it would take for the crops to ripen would depend on more than just the sun alone. He knew that the amount of rain that fell and the number of cloudy days could change the time crops were harvested from year to year. Read YNCA’s article “Equinox the Passover Deception.”
Over time various attempts have been made by men to develop a calendar that was based on the sun, until the year 1583 when Pope Gregory XIII developed what has become known as the Gregorian calendar based on the 365 days’ cycle of the earth around the sun. Pope Gregory also fixed the day Easter. Easter is a holiday formulated by the Catholic Church at the Council of Nice in 325 CE. The Catholic council of bishops, in that same meeting, replaced the Sabbath with Sunday worship and instituted the doctrine of the Trinity. You can find more on the Gregorian calendar and the Council of Nice in good Bible encyclopedias.
When you study the history of Christianity, you will find that the Holidays instituted by the Catholic Clergy have been influenced by pagan beliefs. Easter is celebrated with Easter eggs and bunnies that are fertility symbols believed to have their origins in ancient pagan fertility rites. Christmas is fixed on December 25th approximately the shortest day of the year and can be traced back to the ceremony of Saturnalia kept by the Romans to celebrate the lengthening of daylight hours because the winter solstice occurred on approximately December 25th on the Julian calendar. Neither the celebration of Easter or Christmas can be found in the scriptures. Why then are these holidays thought by most people to be the most holy of days in a year when they are not part of the Creator’s commanded holy days as recorded in the scriptures?
The Jews generally keep Passover and not Easter, and most practicing Jews do not believe that the New Testament scriptures are relevant to them. They do not believe, in general, the Messiah has come to earth and died on the stake for the sins of all mankind, yet many Jews believe they are the chosen people of the creator and they will receive the promise of a kingdom given to Abraham, their ancestor. Jews have instituted the festival of Hanukkah, not in the scriptures, that occurs at the same time Christians celebrate the Christmas season. Hanukkah lasts for eight days and involves giving gifts and eating certain oil cooked foods and sweets; a day thought by many, developed by Jewish leaders to give their followers a time to rival the Christian Christmas in a celebratory manner.
There is another group of worshippers that generally fall somewhere between Christians and Jews in their beliefs. They are loose knit groups of several denominations that keep the Sabbaths and the commandments as written in the scriptures. Some even use the Hebrew names of the Father and Son and they, in general, believe that they should keep the Holy Days as described in the Old Testament and should also follow the example of the Messiah described in the New Testament. Some of them are well read in the scriptures but tend to be small groups and not large well established hierarchal structured organizations such as the Roman Catholic and Protestant churches.
These groups have varied beliefs, some think a man must wear a beard, and others believe they must wear skullcaps and/or prayer shawls or tassels somehow believing Jewish traditions are important to their salvation. These people are not close knit and are generally small groups in different parts of the world. There is much disagreement among them about the scriptures meaning and how scriptural Holy Days are to be observed.
Why do these differences exist among these groups who claim to read and understand the scriptures? These groups believe the Old Testament, based on the Hebrew Scriptures were the creator’s writings. Some, however, believe the New Testament is not relevant while others believe the Old Testament is merely a historical document.
Differences in religious beliefs over the centuries have resulted in wars and many deaths. After the time of the Messiah, the Romans destroyed the Jewish temple in Jerusalem and replaced it with a temple to a pagan deity.
Early Jewish believers in the Messiah were persecuted by Jewish religious leaders who claimed to believe in the scriptures. Historical religious writers have related tales of even the deaths of some of the Apostles and other Jews who proclaimed the Messiah had come to earth and returned to heaven, after his physical death, to be with the Father. From the New Testament scriptures, it is evident that Jewish religious leaders at the time of the Messiah’s physical existence on earth did not welcome any challenges to their traditions and their positions of leadership.
The Catholic Church had disagreements within its own confines but became the strongest single religious organization claiming to base its doctrines on the Bible. The Catholic Church was largely responsible for determining which scriptures would comprise the Bible as it was developed from earlier writings including the Apostles. Historical writings confirm the Catholic Church leadership formed alliances with civil authorities and established itself as the official religion in many countries especially the continent of Europe. Catholicism was so strong in Europe by the eighth century that Pope Stephens II crowned Pepin King of the Franks in the year 751. Pope Stephens II also anointed the sons of Pepin at the same time. One of those son’s name was Charlemagne who later became emperor of the Roman Empire and was in large part responsible in developing the forms of government that exist in western societies even in modern times.
Charlemagne was crowned emperor of the Roman Empire by Pope Leo on Christmas Day in the year 800 establishing the precedent of a religious leader, the Catholic Pope, as having authority over civil government. Much is written of the power of the Catholic leadership in Europe from this time forward, but a most significant time in the religious history of man occurred in the 13th and 14th centuries. The Roman Catholic Church was the official Church of Europe including England. The scriptures at that time were in Latin in the form of the Roman Catholic Bible called the Vulgate. It was the practice of the Catholic laity to hold services in Latin, and only those schooled in the Latin language had even limited access to the scriptures.
In this same approximate time frame John Wycliffe, an English professor at Cambridge University, most of his life, got into disputes with the Pope when he wrote articles to support King Edward the third King of England in 1374 who stood against the payment of Papal levies on England. During 1378 Wycliffe translated the Latin Vulgate into English against the wishes of the Roman Catholic hierarchy. Wycliffe offered teachings that were in conflict to some of the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. He taught that human religious institutions were not to be trusted and that faith in the Creator and his laws were between a man and the creator. He taught faith flowed from the reading of the scriptures not the intercession of the church. He taught against confession of sins to a priest. He also taught against prayers to saints and the sale of pardons and indulgences that brought cash into the Catholic Church. He challenged the Catholic doctrine of real presence. This doctrine held that consecration of the bread and wine during the Eucharist changed their substance into the actual blood and body of the Messiah.
The doctrine of ‘real presence’ was the tool used by the Catholic hierarchy
to punish, even to the point of death, those who opposed the authority of the church rulers. England, in the 1500’s, was a country whose inhabitants were in a state of unrest. The largely uneducated masses were learning to read, and the writings of John Wycliffe including an English version of the Bible assisted in emboldening the populace of England to oppose the rule of a Roman Church.
William Tyndale, an Oxford and Cambridge scholar also printed an English version of the Bible even though he was fiercely opposed by Englishmen loyal to the papal authority the Roman Catholic Church. Tyndale, fearing for his life, left England to work on his Bible, but was tracked down in Antwerp imprisoned, strangled, and burned at the stake like many others who opposed papal authority.
Thousands of people have died and been persecuted because they dared challenge the doctrines of established religious leaders, the Messiah himself was put to death at the insistence of religious leaders who feared their power and traditions were being jeopardized. Wars have been fought, life and property destroyed because people have disagreed on their religious beliefs. Men have used the camouflage of religion, for centuries, to make war and to suppress freedom of religious expression. Can people really be acting on the authority of the creator if they force others to acquiesce to their own beliefs, even to the point of executing those who disavow their doctrine, dogma, or beliefs?
Today people have the means to understand the scriptures more than at any time in man’s history. When the early versions of the English Bibles were written, men did not have the manuscripts that are available today for research. The early translators did not have the skills in Hebrew and Greek that scholars have today, nor could they have. substantial amounts of historical information are now available to which Wycliffe and Tyndale had no access. Scholars have assembled and studied manuscripts along with archaeological artifacts that were not known in the 15th and 16th centuries. Today it is possible for people to access many versions of the scriptures, along with encyclopedias, and historical data, lexicons, and language tools to assist them in their individual study of scriptures if they choose to avail themselves to study the scriptures.
Today it is possible for people to know more about the Creators plans for mankind than even the prophets. In the book of Daniel, we can see a glimpse of Elohim’s plans to disseminate information. Daniel was one of Elohim’s preeminent prophets. He was strategically placed in the service of King Nebuchadnezzar able to interpret dreams for King Nebuchadnezzar predicting the kings exile for seven periods of time because of the king’s lofty pride somehow convincing himself that by his power alone he was able to accomplish his feats of conquering nations and building a great empire.
Daniel was also given other visions of coming governments, but Daniel would not have access to the knowledge that would be made available to people today many believe are the latter days or the end of time referred to in scriptures.
“Now at that time Michael, the great prince who stands guard over the sons of your people, will arise. And there will be a time of distress such as never occurred since there was a nation until that time; and at that time your people, everyone who is found written in the book, will be rescued.2 Many of those who sleep in the dust of the ground will awake, these to everlasting life, but the others to disgrace and everlasting contempt. 3” Those who have insight will shine brightly like the brightness of the expanse of heaven, and those who lead the many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever. 4 “But as for you, Daniel, conceal these words and seal up the book until the end of time; many will go back and forth, and knowledge will increase.”
9 He said, “Go your way, Daniel, for these words are concealed and sealed up until the end time. 10” Many will be purged, purified and refined, but the wicked will act wickedly; and none of the wicked will understand, but those who have insight will understand. 11 “From the time that the regular sacrifice is abolished and the abomination of desolation is set up, there will be 1,290 days. 12 “How blessed is he who keeps waiting and attains to the 1,335 days! 13 “But as for you, go your way to the end; then you will enter into rest and rise again for your allotted portion at the end of the age.”
Daniel, one of the most revered prophets of and by Elohim was not allowed to know the information about the end time. These verses clearly foretell that people will have insight at the time of the end. Those who have insight at the time of the end will shine brightly and will understand and will lead many to righteousness. Elohim defines righteousness, and no one will be able to lead anyone to righteousness unless they have insight and understanding from Elohim.
Where will people obtain their insight and who will be these people who have insight from Elohim? The scriptures clearly reveal who will not have righteousness.
Many will be purged, purified and refined, but the wicked will act wickedly; and none of the wicked will understand, but those who have insight will understand.
None of the wicked will understand. The wicked will not have insight and understanding about the Creators plans for mankind. Does the Bible tell us who will be a wicked person and who will not have understanding?
6 For a fool speaks nonsense,
And his heart inclines toward wickedness:
To practice ungodliness and to speak error against Yahweh,
To keep the hungry person unsatisfied
And to withhold drink from the thirsty.
6 “I will pronounce my judgments on them concerning all their wickedness, whereby they have forsaken Me and have offered sacrifices to other gods, and worshiped the works of their own hands. 17
9 “Have you forgotten the wickedness of your fathers, the wickedness of the kings of Judah, and the wickedness of their wives, your own wickedness, and the wickedness of your wives, which they committed in the land of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 10 “But they have not become contrite even to this day, nor have they feared nor walked in My law or My statutes, which I have set before you and before your fathers.”
20 And He was saying, “That which proceeds out of the man that is what defiles the man. 21 “For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed the evil thoughts, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries, 22 deeds of coveting and wickedness, as well as deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride and foolishness. 23 “All these evil things proceed from within and defile the man.”
There are many verses in the scriptures that tell of Elohim’s dislike of wickedness. The few above allow the reader to begin to understand Yahweh’s definition of wickedness.
In Isaiah chapter 36 verse 2 the prophet writes that it is foolish to practice unrighteousness and to speak error against Yahweh.
The prophet Jeremiah tells the reader in chapter 1 verses 16&17 the wicked are those who have forsaken him, offered sacrifices to other Elohim’s and worshiped the works of their own hands.
In chapter 44 of Jeremiah the prophet tells the reader that Judah has acted in wickedness, just as their forefathers, because they were not contrite and have not feared or walked in Yahweh’s laws or statutes that were set before their forefathers.
In the New Testament book of Matthew, the Messiah Yahshua himself defines wickedness, in the scriptures, as the evil thoughts of men thefts, murders, adulteries, coveting, deceit, envy, slander, pride, sensuality, and foolishness are all elements of wickedness. Remember in Isaiah 36:2 foolishness is the practice of unrighteousness and to speak in error against Yahweh.
It should be apparent that Yahweh considers people wicked if they do not walk in his laws and statutes. People who covet, slander, are proud, steal, worship the works of their hands, and speak in error against Yahweh are considered, by Yahweh, to be wicked, and by Yahweh’s scriptures, those wicked people will not enter the Kingdom of Yahweh.
Read “YNCA’s article “The Wicked Identified and Their Coming Fate.”
It should be important for those who strive to be righteous that they not speak in error against Yahweh. How would someone speak in error against Yahweh? The scriptures above should make it clear anyone who speaks that it is okay not to follow the laws and statutes of Yahweh would be speaking in error against Yahweh. Do most popular religions teach it is not necessary to follow the commandments of Yahweh? Is the tribe of Judah, still today, being taught that the Messiah has not come to earth to redeem man from his sins?
There are other more subtle ways in which people speak in error against Yahweh. One of great importance is the observance of the very significant Passover ceremony service. There appears to a difference in the times to observe the Passover between the Old Testament Passover observed by the tribes of Israel before they departed Egypt, led by Moses and the Passover held by the Messiah Yahshua in the New Testament.
There seems to be a great amount of confusion about the exact time or day the Passover took place in the Old Testament. There are groups that are teaching the Passover took place at the end of the thirteenth day of the first month of the year. The base their arguments not on the scriptures but in supposed reasoning.
The scriptures are clear as to the timing of the Old Covenant Passover took place.
5’Your lamb shall be an unblemished male a year old; you may take it from the sheep or from the goats. 6’ You shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month, then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel is to kill it at twilight.
The Israelites for the very first Passover were told to pick a one-year-old lamb or goat without blemish, to keep the animal until the fourteenth day of the first month and to kill the animal at twilight that same day. There is no mention of any day other than the fourteenth day of the first month. Yet some claim the animal was to be killed on the thirteenth day at twilight.
‘ In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at twilight is Yahweh’s Passover.
2 “Now, let the sons of Israel observe the Passover at its appointed time. 3 “On the fourteenth day of this month, at twilight, you shall observe it at its appointed time; you shall observe it according to all its statutes and according to all its ordinances.”
4 So Moses told the sons of Israel to observe the Passover. 5 They observed the Passover in the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month, at twilight, in the wilderness of Sinai; according to all that Yahweh had commanded Moses, so the sons of Israel did.
16′ Then on the fourteenth day of the first month shall be Yahweh’s Passover.
There is never a mention, in the scriptures of the Passover being held at twilight on the thirteenth day of the month. The scriptures clearly teach the Passover lamb or goat is to be killed on the fourteenth day of the first month at twilight.
There has been the argument by those who advocate the killing of the Passover animal on the thirteenth at twilight can come at the beginning of the day. They argue that twilight on the thirteenth day is really the beginning of the fourteenth day. When does twilight occur according to the scriptures?
9 at twilight, as the day was fading, as the dark of night set in.
This scripture makes it clear that twilight on the fourteenth occurs when the day is fading as the dark of night set in. Twilight on the fourteenth was at the end of the fourteenth as the fourteenth was fading, not as the fourteenth was beginning.
10′ And you shall not leave any of it over until morning, but whatever is left of it until morning, you shall burn with fire. 11′ Now you shall eat it in this manner: with your loins girded, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and you shall eat it in haste — it is Yahweh’s Passover. 12’For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments — I am Yahweh.
Yahweh’s orders to the Israelites were for the Israelites to eat the meal fully clothed with their sandals on their feet and their staffs in their hands. The Israelites were to eat the Passover meal in a hurry. Yahweh had a reason for the Israelites to be fully clothed and to eat the meal in haste. Again, the scriptures tell exactly why the Israelites were to eat the meal in haste.
You can find the reason in verse 12 of Exodus chapter twelve.
12’For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments — I am Yahweh.
Yahweh informed the Israelites on the very night they ate the Passover meal he would go through the land Of Egypt and would strike down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt. Yahweh knew exactly what would happen when he struck down the firstborn of the Egyptians.
29 Now it came about at midnight that Yahweh struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of cattle. 30 Pharaoh arose in the night, he and all his servants and all the Egyptians, and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was no home where there was not someone dead. 31 Then he called for Moses and Aaron at night and said, “Rise up, get out from among my people, both you and the sons of Israel; and go, worship Yahweh, as you have said. 32 “Take both your flocks and your herds, as you have said, and go, and bless me also.”
At about midnight on the fifteenth, the day after twilight of the fourteenth (Yahweh days begin and end at sunset, not at midnight as is custom today), when the Passover animal was slain Yahweh struck all the firstborn of the Egyptians, and anyone else who did not have blood on their door post, killing even the firstborn of the animals.
That same night, it would hardly have been the next night that the Egyptians would have awakened to find their family members dead, Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron and told them to leave Egypt immediately. That is why the Israelites were told to eat the Passover meal in haste dressed in their clothes and shoes.
If the Passover animal were killed at twilight on the 13th and eaten as the fourteenth began then Yahweh would have struck the Egyptian firstborn on the night of the fourteenth. The Israelites would not have to be ready to leave Egypt in a hurry as soon as Pharaoh awoke because the Israelites did not leave Egypt until the fifteenth day of the first month of the year.
These are the journeys of the sons of Israel, by which they came out from the land of Egypt by their armies, under the leadership of Moses and Aaron. 2 Moses recorded their starting places according to their journeys by the command of Yahweh, and these are their journeys according to their starting places. 3 They journeyed from Rameses in the first month, on the fifteenth day of the first month; on the next day after the Passover the sons of Israel started out boldly in the sight of all the Egyptians, 4 while the Egyptians were burying all their firstborn whom Yahweh had struck down among them. Yahweh had also executed judgments on their gods.
The position that the Passover animal was slain at twilight on the thirteenth, and the Egyptian first born were slain on the fourteenth would mean the Israelites had a day, a full 24 hours to remain in Egypt. Why would Yahweh have them eat the Passover meal in haste? It is important to remember no matter how plausible the arguments of those supporting this position, there are no scriptures validating this theory. There are additional scriptures that tell clearly the events of the first Passover and the time and order of their occurrence.
18′ In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at evening, you shall eat unleavened bread, until the twenty-first day of the month at evening. 19’ Seven days there shall be no leaven found in your houses; for whoever eats what is leavened, that person shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he is an alien or a native of the land. 20’You shall not eat anything leavened; in all your dwellings, you shall eat unleavened bread.’”
“Observe the month of Abib and celebrate the Passover to Yahweh your Elohim, for in the month of Abib Yahweh your Elohim brought you out of Egypt by night. 2 “You shall sacrifice the Passover to Yahweh your Elohim from the flock and the herd, in the place where Yahweh chooses to establish His name. 3” You shall not eat leavened bread with it; seven days you shall eat with it unleavened bread, the bread of affliction (for you came out of the land of Egypt in haste), so that you may remember all the days of your life the day when you came out of the land of Egypt. 4 “For seven days no leaven shall be seen with you in all your territory, and none of the flesh which you sacrifice on the evening of the first day shall remain overnight until morning. 5 “You are not allowed to sacrifice the Passover in any of your towns which Yahweh your Elohim is giving you; 6 but at the place where Yahweh your Elohim chooses to establish His name, you shall sacrifice the Passover in the evening at sunset, at the time that you came out of Egypt. 7 “You shall cook and eat it in the place which Yahweh your Elohim chooses. In the morning, you are to return to your tents. 8 “Six days you shall eat unleavened bread, and on the seventh day there shall be a solemn assembly to Yahweh your Elohim; you shall do no work on it.
The Feast of Unleavened Bread begins on the fifteenth day of the first month of the year. The times the Israelites were to eat unleavened bread was a total of seven days. Exodus chapter 12 verses 18 & 19 make it very clear the Israelites were to eat only unleavened bread from the evening of the fourteenth until the evening of the twenty-first day of the first month. If the Passover meal were eaten on the evening of the 13th, the Israelites would have eaten unleavened bread for eight days, not seven.
Yahweh reinforced his instructions as to the amount of time unleavened bread should be eaten so there could be no mistake. The time period given to Moses in Exodus chapter 12 verses 18&19 clearly say that unleavened bread is to be eaten seven days beginning at twilight on the 14th. This is the same time that Israel was instructed to slay the Passover animal and have it for a meal fully cooked.
In the book of Deuteronomy chapter sixteen, the instructions to the Israelites should be very clear. The Passover animal was to be killed at sunset, the Israelites were to cook and eat the Passover meal, with unleavened bread, they were to return to their tents until morning, and then they were instructed to eat unleavened bread for six more days. The scriptures are unmistakably clear. Unleavened bread is to be eaten for a total of seven days. Unleavened bread is to be eaten from the 14th of the first month at twilight through the 21st at twilight. Unleavened bread was to be eaten beginning with the Passover meal as the sun set on the 14th day of the first month at the time the Israelites came out of Egypt. The Israelites came out of Egypt on the fifteenth day of the month after midnight following the Passover meal that took place when the Passover animal was cooked, beginning at sunset, on the end of the 14th and the beginning of the 15th. Deuteronomy chapter 16 verse eight clearly instructs the Israelites to eat unleavened bread for six more days after the first day of Unleavened Bread.
Some have claimed that the Hebrew words used in the verses translated twilight in English means between the evenings. They go on to claim that between the evening’s means the Passover lamb was actually slain on the evening of the 13th day of the first month. Study the scriptures for yourself. There are no scriptures to support the teaching the Passover animal was killed at twilight on the 13th day of the month. There are no scriptures to support the teaching that unleavened bread was to be eaten for eight days beginning with the Passover meal at the beginning of the 14th day of the first month.
These same people teach the New Testament verses must be incorrect when they state the Jews at the time of Yahshua on earth kept the Passover on the first day of The Feast of Unleavened Bread: (Matthew 26:17, Mark 14: 12 and Luke 22:7). The Jews until this very time still keep the Passover meal at the beginning of the 15th day of the first month. Do the Jewish Rabbis not know how to read the Hebrew language? What about the modern-day language scholars, do they not know how to translate the Hebrew Scriptures into English? Are all these Jewish teachers and language leaders incorrect, while a few non-scholars claiming to have a better understanding of the Hebrew language are correct?
All persons must study the scriptures and all the evidence and make a decision for themselves. What they decide and whom they follow will determine their future. They will either have understanding or brightly shine as described in the book of Daniel or they will lack understanding as foretold in the book of Daniel. Only the First-Fruits will have enough understanding to be with Yahshua when he returns. If you follow men who don’t understand the coming role of the First-Fruits it must be concluded they lack understanding and their followers will likewise lack understanding.
Important First fruits
The Messiah is the first of the First-Fruits.
Yahshua was and is the first of the First-Fruits; the scriptures reveal he will return to earth to rule his kingdom with the assistance of the First-Fruits that follow his example and obey his words. Even though the scriptures are replete with information concerning the First-Fruits almost no theologian, minister, priest, or religious leader writes, talks or teaches about the First- Fruits and their importance in Elohim’s plan of salvation for human kind. Both the Old and New Testaments have scriptures that reveal the significance the First-Fruits in the coming Kingdom of Elohim.
When Yahweh instructed the Israelites, in the Old Testament, how to tithe of their first fruits of both the fields and flocks, he was careful to explain the tithe was to be the very best of their produce and animals and was not to be defective.
The tithe was mandatory and was given to the Levitical Priests to offer as sacrifices for the sins of the Israelites. The tithe was also used to support the Levitical priesthood whose job it was to not only offer sacrifices on behalf of the Israelites but also to prevent the Israelites from approaching or entering the Holy Temple because they were not sanctified by symbolic consecration and were thus not able to approach Yahweh’s symbolic residence.
The tithe was comprised of the first fruits of the increase of the Israelites for the forgiveness of their sins and to protect them from death if they tried to approach or enter the Temple without being consecrated, as were the Levitical Priests.
The Levitical Priests were consecrated with special oil that studies will reveal symbolized the Holy Spirit of Elohim and that no one can approach Elohim without being consecrated by His Holy Spirit.
The importance of the protection, provided by the Holy Spirit, was portrayed symbolically by the offering of the Passover lamb in the Old Testament scriptures. The Egyptian Pharaoh would not allow the Israelites to leave Egypt, so Yahweh demonstrated his power by killing all the first born in Egypt that belonged to a household that did not have a lamb’s blood smeared on its doorpost.
The Israelites were instructed, by Moses, to kill a lamb one-year old without blemish, to eat the lamb, with their families, and to smear the lamb’s blood on the entry to their dwellings. The Israelites had their first-born protected from death when the death angel passed over Egypt killing all the first-born, man and animal that were not protected by the blood of the lamb. This incident was the symbolic portrayal of the coming sacrifice of the Messiah for the sins of humankind.
The Holy Spirit and its protection was not made available to human kind until the Messiah was born, lived, and was killed for the sins of humans approximately 1500 hundred years after the first Passover was held in Egypt.
Yahshua tells in scriptures that he would return to the Father before the helper, the Holy Spirit would be made available his earthly followers.
“But now I am going to Him who sent Me; and none of you asks Me, ‘Where are You going?’ 6 “But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. 7 “But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you. 8 “And He, when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment; 9 concerning sin, because they do not believe in Me; 10 and concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father and you no longer see Me; 11 and concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged.
Leavened Bread offered to Yahweh
In verse 13 the Helper is called the spirit of truth. After the risen Messiah ascended to be with the father the Holy Spirit descended and settled on those, who were waiting in one place on the day of Pentecost; this event is described in the book of Acts chapter two. The day on which the Holy Spirit descended upon humans is very significant because it is the very same day that is symbolized in the Old Testament scriptures of Leviticus chapter 23 verses 16&17 on which the priests were to offer two loaves of leavened bread as an offering of First-Fruits to Yahweh.
16 ‘You shall count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath; then you shall present a new grain offering to Yahweh. 1 7’You shall bring in from your dwelling places two loaves of bread for a wave offering, made of two-tenths of an ephah; they shall be of a fine flour, baked with leaven as first fruits to Yahweh
Please note this offering of First-Fruits to Yahweh was an offering of two loaves of bread made with fine flower and leaven on the same day as the New Testament day called Pentecost in the Greek language. Also, note the drink offering at the waving of the two loaves of leavened bread was not a drink of wine as the instructions for most other offerings to Yahweh in the Old Testament.
yayin (yah’-yin); from an unused root meaning to effervesce; wine (as fermented); by implication, intoxication:
(Biblesoft’s New Exhaustive Strong’s Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.)
Yayin is the Hebrew word for wine in the Old Testament, and t is clearly different from the root word used as the drink offering in Leviticus chapter 23 verses 16&17.
nacak (naw-sak’); a primitive root; to pour out, especially a libation, or to cast (metal); by analogy, to anoint a king:
(Biblesoft’s New Exhaustive Strong’s Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.)
The drink offering commanded to be used with the first-fruit symbol of two loaves of leavened bread was a symbol to anoint a king. It was clearly not wine.
It is important to note and remember that the offering symbolizing the First-Fruits described in Leviticus chapter 23 is very different from the sin offerings and the previous first-fruit offerings to Yahweh described in Exodus chapter 2, the first fruit offering of grain.
It is also important to note and remember that this first-fruit offering described in Leviticus chapter 23 took place on the same calendar day the Holy Spirit descended upon humans, the day called Pentecost in the New Testament as depicted in Acts chapter 2.
Religious leaders have had differences and caused controversy over the timing and symbols of the Passover for thousands of years. This controversy continues today because many religious leaders do not understand what the scriptures are truly revealing. Jewish leaders believe the Passover in the Old Testament was held at evening on the 14th day of the first month of the year based upon the Hebrew calendar. Christians hold various other beliefs but in general, disagree with the Passover held by the Jews.
Most Christians call their version of the New Testament service, vaguely linked to the Passover meal, held by the Messiah, the Eucharist. The various Christian groups have different times and methods of participation in their Eucharist service almost none of them have any similarity to the service held by the Messiah in the New Testament scriptures. Even the groups who use the Hebrew names of the Father and Son and keep the Sabbaths disagree on the methodology and symbolism used in the New Testament Service held by Yahshua.
What is the real message of the Passover and is that message different for Jew and Christians, or is there another meaning that is in the scriptures but missed by both Jews and Christians? There are definitely differences between the observance of the Passover in the Old Testament and the Passover meal observed by the Messiah in the New Testament.
To begin to understand the significance of the Passover those who study to understand the scriptures must consider the premise that both the Passover service instituted in Egypt and the Passover service instituted by the Messiah in the New Testament have a specific meaning and purpose.
The Passover service held in Egypt by Israelites served to protect their firstborn males from death if the blood of the lamb was on the doorpost of their dwelling the night after the Passover meal was observed. The Israelites were released from Egypt after the death angel passed over Egypt and the firstborn males in Egypt both man and animal died.
The Israelites were then led by Moses through the wilderness and desert to the land of Canaan that had been promised to them because they were the descendants of Abraham who had been faithful and obedient to Yahweh.
The Israelites, during their journey, promised Yahweh they would obey the commandments and statues he gave them at Mount Horeb. The scriptures clearly tell the Israelites did not keep their promise and were ejected from the Promised Land they had entered after they were released from Egypt. Israel, according to the Apostle Paul as written in his letter to the Corinthians, was an example that should not be followed, because of their disobedience to Yahweh, by those who truly seek salvation from Elohim.
Yahweh made a covenant with Abraham and his descendants generally referred in religious writings to as the Old Covenant. Under this covenant, Israel was to be first nations to receive a special blessing of land and riches. Also, if Israel had kept their promise to Yahweh, they would have become a nation of Priests over all the other nations.
10 “I found Israel
Like grapes in the wilderness;
I saw your fathers
As the First-Fruits on the fig tree in its first season.
But they went to Baal Peor,
And separated themselves to that shame;
They became an abomination like the thing they loved.
5 Now therefore, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is Mine. 6 And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words which you shall speak to the children of Israel.”
Israel will still receive the promise Yahweh made to Abraham. They will receive the land promised even though they broke their word to Yahweh. Israel won’t; however, be the nation of Priests they could have been if they had kept their end of the Old Covenant.
Yahshua is the Son of Elohim revealed in scriptures that came to earth, as a physical human to set an example for people to follow and to die for the sins of mankind. Yahshua is the symbolic lamb that was foretold by the Old Testament Passover, sacrificed on the 14th day of the first month, just as the symbolic Passover lambs were slain in Egypt. Yahshua’s sacrifice for the sins of people made possible a New Covenant that was not a physical covenant for Israel alone, but a covenant that was for a new group of spiritual First-Fruits that would become a kingdom of priests to Yahweh.
There are similarities and differences between the old and new covenants, and Yahshua is the most important difference between the two. The Old Testament covenant and Passover were established for the physical Israelites who had to keep their promises to Yahweh if they were to become a nation of priests. The Old Testament method established for forgiveness of the sins of the Israelites was the shedding of blood of sacrificial animals that was performed on a repeated schedule. The Levitical priesthood performed the ritualistic sacrifices on behalf of the Israelites and collected and lived off the tithes and offerings of the Israelites.
Old Covenant promise of Land to Israel
Under the old covenant, the Israelites were given the promise of land if they obeyed the commandments given to them in writing by Yahweh. Under the new covenant, people were given an example to follow, and that example was the Messiah who was symbolized as a lamb in the Old Testament Passover. The first Old Testament Passover lamb provided protection from death for the first-born males because the lamb’s blood was a sign to the death angel that a household had followed the instructions of Yahweh in observing the Passover.
The blood shed to seal the new covenant was the Messiah’s blood that was to be shed only once, not repeatedly as was done under the old covenant with animal blood. The old covenant was an everlasting covenant that was marked by the physical circumcision on all the Israelite males. Any male Israelite male who was not physically circumcised would be cut off from his people.
3 Abram fell facedown, and Elohim said to him, 4 “As for me, this is my covenant with you: You will be the father of many nations. 5 No longer will you be called Abram; your name will be Abraham, for I have made you a father of many nations. 6 I will make you very fruitful; I will make nations of you, and kings will come from you. 7 I will establish my covenant as an everlasting covenant between me and you and your descendants after you for the generations to come, to be your Elohim and the Elohim of your descendants after you. 8 The whole land of Canaan, where you are now an alien, I will give as an everlasting possession to you and your descendants after you; and I will be their Elohim.”
My covenant in your flesh is to be an everlasting covenant. 14 Any uncircumcised male, who has not been circumcised in the flesh, will be cut off from his people; he has broken my covenant.”
The everlasting physical covenant given by Yahweh in the book of Genesis either has not been done away with by the new covenant, Yahweh misspoke, or there is a translation error in the Old Testament.
The answer is; the new covenant did not cancel the Old Testament physical covenant. Yahweh did not misspeak nor did he go back on his word to Abraham when he established the New Covenant through the blood of his son Yahshua. Yahweh will keep his word to Abraham concerning his descendants and will provide them the promised physical land of Canaan in the future, even though the Israelites have broken their word to Yahweh and disobeyed his laws. Yahweh has also promised he will establish a new covenant with the Israelites:
New Covenant is for First-Fruits
31 ” Behold, days are coming,” declares Yahweh, “when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, 32 not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them,” declares Yahweh. 33 “But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares Yahweh,” I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their Elohim, and they shall be My people. 34 “They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, ‘Know Yahweh,’ for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them,” declares Yahweh, “for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.”
The Israelites received a promise of physical land if they were obedient to the laws of Elohim; however, they were not obedient to Yahweh’s laws and for a period Yahweh has partially turned away from Israel as a nation, but not as his chosen people. In the future, Israel will return to the land promised them, and once in that land, they will also receive the new covenant promised by Yahweh through the prophet Jeremiah. Israel as a nation will not; however, have the same promise of the new covenant as will the First-Fruits.
New Covenant Passover is different for First-Fruits
Yahshua held a Passover service in the New Testament that was different than the Old Testament Passover service in which Israel participated to save the lives of their firstborn sons. What are the differences and what is the significance? The scriptures are clear in the book of John chapter 13 that Yahshua held his Passover meal at a different time than the Old Covenant Passover being observed by the Jews.
Now before the Feast of the Passover, Jesus knowing that His hour had come that He would depart out of this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end. 2 During supper, the devil having already put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, to betray Him, 3 Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come forth from God and was going back to God, 4 got up from supper, and laid aside His garments; and taking a towel, He girded Himself.
Yahshua held his New Covenant Passover meal before the Passover being held by the Jews. The meal could not have been held on the fourteenth of the month, the day of the Old Covenant Passover because it took place before the feast, before the Passover lambs were killed on the fourteenth at twilight because Yahshua Passover was held the night before the Passover the Jews were observing their Passover.
When Jesus (Yahshua) had said this, He became troubled in spirit, and testified and said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, that one of you will betray Me.” 22 The disciples began looking at one another, at a loss to know of which one He was speaking. 23 There was reclining on Jesus’ bosom one of His disciples, whom Jesus loved. 24 So Simon Peter gestured to him, and said to him, “Tell us who it is of whom He is speaking.” 25 He, leaning back thus on Jesus’ bosom, said to Him, “Lord, who is it?” 26 Jesus then answered, “That is the one for whom I shall dip the morsel and give it to him.” So when he had dipped the morsel, He took and gave it to Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot. 27 After the morsel, Satan then entered into him. Therefore, Jesus said to him, “What you do, do quickly.” 28 Now no one of those reclining at the table knew for what purpose He had said this to him. 29 For some were supposing, because Judas had the money box, that Jesus was saying to him, “Buy the things we have need of for the feast”; or else, that he should give something to the poor. 30 So after receiving the morsel he went out immediately; and it was night.
The Passover meal given by Yahshua used new symbols to depict its significance in establishing the New Covenant Passover as different from the Old Covenant Passover. Yahshua used leavened bread at the Passover meal in the New Testament. The leavened bread symbolized that the First-Fruits would have the Holy Spirit within and would keep his commandments and laws unlike the Israelites who Yahweh knew would not keep his laws and commandments.
9 And when He had taken some bread and given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.”
The word recorded in the scriptures used for bread by Yahshua was the Greek word artos.
artos (ar’-tos); from NT:142; bread (as raised) or a loaf:
(Biblesoft’s New Exhaustive Strong’s Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.)
Yahshua used leaven bread as the Passover symbol for his body because he would be the first of the First-Fruits just as the Levitical priest waved two loaves of leavened bread at the first-fruit offering in the book of Leviticus chapter 23 that symbolized the spirit filled New Covenant assembly of First-Fruits beginning at Pentecost. Yahshua also used this same Greek word in the book of John when he referred to himself as the bread of life.
Jewish and Christian traditions have held that the Messiah used unleavened bread at the New Testament New Covenant Passover observance held by Yahshua, but they have no scriptural support for their mistaken and false teaching.
Yahshua also did not use wine at the New Testament New covenant Passover he held on the evening of the 13th day of the first month of the year as marked by the Hebrew Calendar.
Just as the Levitical Priest did not use wine at the offering of First-Fruits at the Feast of Weeks which symbolized the beginning of the spirit filled assembly of the New Covenant Yahshua did not use wine at the New Covenant Passover meal over which he presided in the New Testament.
27 And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you; 28 for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins. 29 “But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom.”
The Greek word used for the drink was not the Greek word oinos for wine but:
genema or gennema (ghen’-nay-mah); from NT:1080; offspring; by analogy, produce (literally or figuratively):
The lambs sacrificed at the first Passover were merely symbols of the future sacrifice of the Messiah for the sins of all humankind not just the firstborn sons of Israel. The blood of animals in the Old Testament was offered repeatedly for the sins of the Israelites. The blood of Yahshua was offered only once for the sins of humankind.
The lambs in the Old Testament Passover were killed at Twilight on the fourteenth day of the first month of the year as set by Yahweh. Yahshua was also sacrificed on the fourteenth day of the first month of the Year as established by Yahweh.
Yahshua held his Passover service on the eve of the thirteenth day of the month and used leavened bread for his service while the Israelites that participated in the first Passover were instructed to use unleavened bread at the Passover meal and to continue to eat unleavened bread for seven days in remembrance of Yahweh delivering them from Egypt with a mighty hand. It does not appear, from the scriptures, that Yahshua negated the requirement that Israelites eat only unleavened bread beginning on the 14th day of the first month of the lunar year.
In the Old Testament the sacrifices, offered by the Levitical Priest were offered with their drink offerings that were instructed, in the scriptures, to be wine. The exception to this instruction, however, was the first-fruit offering of two loaves of leavened bread at the feast of weeks symbolizing the indwelling of Yahweh’s Holy Spirit in those people who will be First-Fruits to Yahweh under the New Covenant and is symbolically connected to the day of Pentecost as related in Acts chapter 2 in the New Testament.
In the Old Testament, the word used as a drink offering at the feast of weeks, described in Leviticus 23, was not wine but the Hebrew word nacak, that means a libation symbolizing the anointing a king.
In the New Testament Passover service, administered by Yahshua, the word used for the drink offering was also not the Greek word oinos that means wine literally or figuratively. The word used was the Greek word genema that means produce or offspring literally or figuratively.
Yahshua told us in the scriptures that he is the true vine (John 15:1). What is the significance of the change of symbols in the Passover held by Yahshua verses the symbols of the Old Testament?
The physical lambs of the Old Testament Passover were replaced by the sacrifice of Yahshua. The unleavened bread used in the Old Testament Passover was replaced by leavened bread. The leavened bread symbolized the First-Fruits were to be filled with the Holy Spirit. This was depicted by the First-Fruits offering of the two leavened loaves at the Feast of Weeks, later known as Pentecost the day the New Testament Assembly had the Holy Spirit descended upon them.
The symbol of wine was replaced by a drink that symbolized the New Testament Passover that symbolized Yahshua as the one who was the mediator of a New Covenant for the First-Fruits of himself, the true vine.
New Covenant First-Fruits will live in New Jerusalem
The New Covenant is to be for the First-Fruits who will be the firstborn of many. The First-Fruits will become a kingdom of priests serving in the New Jerusalem with Yahshua. The First-Fruits will be created by their acceptance of the blood of the New Covenant Mediator and the true vine Yahshua.
The future of physical Israel under the Old Covenant is revealed in the books of Isaiah and Ezekiel while the future of the First-Fruits is revealed in the New Testament book of Revelation. A remnant of Physical Israel will receive the land promised them, through Abraham by Yahweh even though physical Israel broke their word to Yahweh.
The spirit filled First-Fruits now have a New Covenant where the laws of Yahweh are written in their minds and hearts, and with the help of the Holy Spirit they will know and keep the commandments of Yahweh and follow the example of Yahshua. These spirits filled beings will be with Yahshua, will live in the New Jerusalem and will be a kingdom of priests.
Those people who are willing to study and learn the scriptures and follow the commands of Elohim and follow the example of Yahshua have the opportunity to become a first-born First-Fruit. They can have the opportunity to be in the Kingdom of Heaven and be with the Father and Son as described in the scriptures. Yahweh has provided people an opportunity to be happy and to live forever in the marvelous creation man still cannot comprehend because of its complexity and magnitude.
Will you accept the offer made by the Creator or will you close your mind to the scriptures, follow your own ways and the traditions of man?
Your eternal life depends on you!
The scriptures foretell of this, and only a few will be willing to obey the scriptures and become the First-Fruits (Revelation 14). Men continue to cling to their false beliefs and continue their traditions of wrongly keeping the services as given in the scriptures. Will you be one of those who blindly follow men who claim to know the scriptures, but do not, and follow tradition or will you follow the example of Yahshua and believe what the scriptures truly exclaim?
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