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Grace Bible Church Tree of Life
A Weekly Review Week ending 012614
The Sword of the Spirit manifested in the Life of Jesus Christ, the Passover analogies.

JOH 6:3, And Jesus went up on the mountain, and there He sat with His disciples. Now the Passover, the feast of the Jews, was at hand. In spite of the distractions and the deceptions that come from Satan and the Kingdom of darkness, we have been noting the doctrinal analogies concerning the unveiling of our hearts while the Jews have a veil over theirs with regards to the Lord Jesus Christ.

We know this because the apostle Paul tells us in 2Co 3 that we live in the dispensation of the unveiling glory of God while the Jews are still living in the dispensation of the veiled glory of God because of their arrogance and rejection of the lord Jesus Christ. This produces hardness of the heart as well as scar tissue of the soul. This is why we have passages like JOH 12:40 which says, “He has blinded their eyes, and He hardened their heart; lest they see with their eyes, and perceive with their heart, and be converted, and I heal them.”

ROM 11:25, For I do not want you, brethren, to be uninformed of this mystery, lest you be wise in your own estimation, that a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fulness of the Gentiles has come in; And then of course this principle is found in

2CO 3:14, But their minds were hardened; for until this very day at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remains unlifted, because it is removed in Christ. He came to His own, and those who were His own did not receive Him, and this is the reason why the Jews have developed hardness of the heart as well as scar tissue of the soul.

Scar tissue of the soul attacks the left lobe of the soul, which is the self-consciousness, mentality, volition, emotion, and the conscience. Hardness of the heart is the result of the scar tissue of the soul in the left lobe (mind), causing the right lobe (heart) to reject gnosis, (knowledge), from becoming epignosis, (wisdom), and therefore the heart becomes hard and filled with darkness.

It is also the main reason they cannot see the difference of the unveiled glory of God for the Church-age believer verses the veiled glory of God for the Jews. And so because of these principles, we have begun to take a look at some of the functions, which take place at a Jewish Passover and the tremendous analogies pointing to our Lord Jesus Christ.

Remember that the Jewish people could not discern that the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world in (JOH 1:29) is actually present with them because they are blinded by arrogance and the hardness of the heart and they have a veil over their heart.

In 2 Co 3 Paul is going to open up on the subject of the unveiled glory as it relates to the angelic conflict. And as he begins he opens with sarcasm. For example in 2CO 3:1, Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, as some, letters of commendation to you or from you? You are our letter or our Epistle, written in our hearts, known and read by all men; The believer’s life is both observed by unbelievers and believers as well as the fallen and the Elect angels, MAT 5:16; EPH 3:10; 1PE 1:12.

So the human race is observing you. You are a battleground, you have the tremendous potentiality for glory, and that glory was unveiled at the beginning of the Church Age. Paul goes on to say in 2CO 3:3-11, being manifested that you are a letter of Christ, cared for by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone, but on tablets of human hearts. And such confidence we have through Christ toward God. Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God, who also made us adequate as servants of a new covenant, not of the letter, but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. But if the ministry of death which had an inherent glory, Glory of TLJC , in letters engraved on stones, came with glory, so that the sons of Israel could not look intently at the face of Moses because of the glory of his face, fading as it was, how shall the ministry of the Spirit fail to be even more with glory? For if the ministry of condemnation has glory, much more does the ministry of righteousness abound in glory.

For indeed what had glory [which is the Torah, the Mosaic Law found in Old Testament], in this case has no glory on account of the glory [the New Testament] that surpasses it. For if that which fades away was with glory [a reference to the Old Testament or the Mosaic Law which reflected TLJC Who is the Shekinah glory, or Emmanuel, God is with us] 2CO 3:11 goes on to say, much more that which remains is in glory. The phrase much more here means a ministry which is even greater than the Law, a ministry which produces righteousness, grace, mercy, goodness and love. Therefore that which remains is the ministry of God the Holy Spirit and what He produces, which is +R, grace, mercy, goodness and love. And this is a reference to the unveiled ministry of God the Holy Spirit in the New Testament where He produces what GAL 5:22-23, says, the fruit of the Spirit which is love, grace, mercy, inner happiness, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self control; against such things there is no Mosaic law. 2 Co 3:11-18, For if that which fades away was with glory, much more that which remains is in glory. Therefore having such a hope, we use great boldness in our speech, and are not like Moses, who used to put a veil over his face so that the sons of Israel would not look intently at the end of what was fading away. But their minds were hardened; for until this very day at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remains unlifted, because it is removed in Christ. But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart; but whenever a person turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.

So, in JOH 6:4 we read. Now the Passover, the feast of the Jews, was at hand. Passover began on the first month of the Jewish calendar, April 14, 1441 BC According to EXO 12:1 14; LEV 23:5. God told the Jews that April should the first month because spring represents the beginning of life. Without a doubt, the Jewish Passover is the oldest celebration that we have today, 3,500 years old. And this feast portrayed the work of Christ on the cross with emphasis on redemption. For the Jews, Passover doesn't just happen, it takes a lot of preparation. This is why we read in MAT 26:17-18, Now on the first {day} of Unleavened Bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Where do You want us to prepare for You to eat the Passover?” And He said, “Go into the city that is Jerusalem to a certain man, and say to him, ‘The Teacher says, My time is at hand; I {am to} keep the Passover at your house with My disciples.’”

The certain man is an unknown man but we do know from MAR 14:13 and LUK 22:10, that in this city there were two million people and among them the disciples were to look for a man carrying a pitcher of water on his head. A man hardly ever carried water in the ancient world, so this was a strange sight and something anyone would notice. It just so happened that this man who carried the water was a believer who had responded to the Lord's message. Can you imagine what a privilege it must have been for this man to humble himself and then be identified and acknowledged by the Lord Jesus Christ.

His reward is given in such passages as MAT 10:42, “And whoever in the name of a disciple gives to one of these little ones even a cup of cold water to drink, truly I say to you he shall not lose his reward.” So in MAT 26:19, And the disciples did as Jesus had directed them; and they prepared the Passover. Notice the importance of the proper procedure and the preparations that were involved. This falls under the principle that the right thing must be done in the right way. Also, notice the Lord’s confidence in this man to be faithful to fulfill the details concerning the Jewish Passover.

This is the manifestation of what many of you live in as MAT 25:21 states that the master said to his slave; “Well done, good and faithful slave; you were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things, enter into the joy of your master.” Entering into the joy of the master is enjoying the results of the faithfulness that many of you portray as servants of God, your master. This is revealed by your dedication and devotion that you reveal with how you give and use your time, talent, and treasure.

The joy that we enter into through our dedication and devotion with reference to how we use our time, talent and treasure is revealed by ACT 20:35, where our Lord said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Now, in preparation for the Passover, the house must be cleaned and sterilized in honor of this great occasion. Specifically, the house must be free of all leaven.

Leaven is simply yeast used to make bread rise and is found in bread, cakes, cookies etc. And in the Bible, leaven is symbolic of sin or evil. This is why the Lord said, MAT 16:6, “Watch out and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” GAL 5:9, a little leaven leavens the whole lump of dough. So, in preparation for the Passover, the Jews had to get rid of all the leaven from their home. There could be no yeast and the leaven would be burnt in the fire representing the judgment of sin. This caused Paul to write in 1CO 5:7, Clean out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, just as you are in fact unleavened. For Christ our Passover also has been sacrificed. This is an appeal to us to be pure for the celebration of the Lord’s Supper through rebound. After the leaven is cleaned out, the next procedure in the preparation of the Passover is to get out the special white linen cloths that go with the meal. Remember that white linen is symbolic of perfect righteousness in the Bible. REV 19:7-8, “Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready. And it was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.”

In an orthodox Jewish home that follows the precise correct procedure, the table is set with a white tablecloth and white candles, and the father of the house wears a white robe called a kittle and a white crown. He is to symbolize the high priest in the tabernacle who wore a pure white robe. However, it really refers to the Lord Jesus Christ who glowed white after his resurrection. We know that because MAT 17:1-2, And six days later Jesus took with Him Peter and James and John his brother, and brought them up to a high mountain by themselves. and He was transfigured before them; and His face shone like the sun, and His garments became as white as light. There are also white dishes used which were not used throughout the rest of the year. The white linen, white plates, and white candles are used to create an atmosphere of purity. Once the table is set and the father is ready, the candles are lit by a woman as the preparation continues. A woman lights the candles because it was a woman who brought us Christ, the light of the world. After the woman lights the candle she sings a certain song. What she said was, “Blessed art Thou O Lord our God, King of the universe, who has exalted us among all people and bade us to kindle the Passover lights.” Four cups of wine will be drunk as part of the Passover ceremony.

The cups should be filled by one of the servants representing leadership and freedom. The first cup is called the cup of sanctification and it simply sanctifies the table and all of the preparations. The drinking of this cup symbolizes approval and gives the blessing for the Passover supper to begin. After the first cup, the father takes three loaves of the unleavened bread and places them in a special white linen envelope, which has three compartments. Then, in a special ceremony of his own, the father removes the middle loaf from its compartment, breaks it, and then wraps it in a separate piece of white linen and hides it away or buries it somewhere. Now, the youngest member of the family who can read will ask four questions. The questions are very general and give the father a chance to tell the story of the Exodus:

The first question, why is this night distinguished from all other nights? On this night we eat only unleavened bread. The answer is that unleavened bread symbolizes purity from sin.

The second question: On all other nights we may eat any kind of herbs, but on this night only bitter herbs. Why? The answer to the second question, The bitter herbs remind the Jews of the bitterness of slavery in Egypt.

The third question: On all other nights we do not dip in the bowl, but tonight we dip twice. Why? This is the dipping, by which the Lord Jesus Christ identified His betrayer, Judas, when he said the the one who dips with me shall betray Me, and this has several meanings. Parsley is dipped twice in salt water. The first dip represents Israel going into the Red Sea and coming out unharmed. The second dip is for the Egyptian army who tried to follow them, the parsley is dipped and then immediately.

The fourth question: On this night we all recline in our chairs at the table. Why? The reclining in the chairs has to do with freedom. The Jews are no longer slaves and so they can relax. And so as the story is told, the ceremonial foods on the center plate are eaten. For example, as the father is telling about the bitterness of slavery, he serves each person horseradish from the center plate and they take the bread and take a bite of the horseradish. And this brings tears and pain to their eyes!

Then he pauses as they dip the parsley in the salt water. As he talks about the lamb, he gestures to the unbroken shank bone of the lamb, which is on the plate. Then there is the charose (harosis) which was like a paste made thick to symbolize the clay or representing the mortar than Pharaoh made them make. It’s made of figs, dates, and nuts and was to symbolize the sweetness or the pleasures of sin in the world. Remember that the Bible teaches that sin will give you pleasure for a season. Then there is a second cup at the Passover. The second cup is spilled into the individual plates in front of each person, a drop at a time. Each drop remembers a plague God visited upon Egypt while the implacable Pharaoh hardened his heart. The ten red drops fall into the empty white plate in front of each person and they are clearly representative of those ten great plagues in Egypt. As this happens, the father chants the name of each plague, blood, frogs, gnats, insects, boils, locust, darkness, death etc. It is a very melancholy moment but it is dispelled quickly as the main meal comes out.

The meal is like a thanksgiving meal and the entire family is assembled. Now, comes the most wonderful and touchingly symbolic part of all, the third cup, which is the cup of redemption. After this, they would eat the meal and after the meal was through, the father of the house would now go and get the piece of bread which he hid and a new cup of unfermented wine. And that is communion now as we know it. It is now time to bring forth that buried loaf of unleavened bread, which will serve as the desert to the meal. The afikomin [desert], as it is called which means the arrival and it represents the Lord Jesus Christ, as the bread of life! The buried unleavened bread, the middle piece, is then eaten with the third cup of wine. And that is where we get communion or the Lord’s supper.

The three loaves represent the Trinity, and the middle one represents God the Son. It was the Son who was broken for our sins...it was his body, which was broken for you. And the bread was wrapped in white linen and buried, as was the body of Jesus. Now it is brought forth from the ground with the cup of redemption. And the bread, which I told you was the desert, is the last thing eaten because it represents the fact that once someone partakes of the bread of life, they will be sustained forever. JOH 6:35, Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me shall not hunger, and He who believes in Me shall never thirst.” In the actual ceremony, the father breaks off pieces from the loaf (the size of an olive" says the haggadah) and passes the pieces around the table. Each person eats his piece and drinks the third cup with it. Blessings are pronounced over the bread and wine individually which have great meaning for us. So when we celebrate the Lord’s supper, we are actually taken a part out of the Jewish Passover and celebrating it today. And when the Jews celebrate Passover, they are actually celebrating a part of the Lord’s supper.

This is the part of the Passover that the Lord took the bread and the cup and instituted what we call communion. MAT 26:26, and while they were eating [Passover], Jesus took bread, and having blessed it, He broke it and gave it to His disciples, and He said, “take, eat; this represents My body.” It’s interesting because when it says that He blessed, the Jewish people know exactly what the Lord said and the Christian Church does not. He said a prayer which was commanded to be said at this time which is “Blessed art Thou O Lord our God, King of the universe who brings forth bread from the earth.” So He picked the bread from the floor, representing the earth, and said, This is My body, this was a prophecy of the fact that bringing forth bread from the earth represented our Lord's resurrection as the bread of life. He was actually saying to His disciples, if they try to bury My body this week, than just like this piece of bread, it will just come up again from the earth. This is why He said, the night before His death, JOH 12:24, “truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains by itself alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.” You cannot bury a kernel of wheat, the Lord said it will only come up again. And so our Lord said he was the bread of life, JOH 6:35, Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life;” He was born in Bethlehem, which means house of bread. He was buried on the second feast, which was the feast of unleavened bread , which represented his impeccability as the God-man. So they would take the matzo bread, which represents some interesting facets of our Lord’s body. The matzo bread has stripes, and as Isaiah said by His stripes we are healed in ISA 53:5. The bread is pierced through with wholes and as the O.T., which is also the Jewish Bible says, they shall look upon Me whom they have pierced. And of course, the matzo bread is pure, containing no leaven (representing no sin.) The third cup has every bit of significance as the bread.

Remember that the Lord said in JOH 6:53, "truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in yourselves." And He identified the wine as His blood. In MAT 26:27-28, and when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, “drink from it, all of you; for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins.” This is another one of those Jewish blessings. He said, “blessed art Thou, O Lord our God, King of the universe, Creator of the fruit of the vine.” However, this is very meaningful to each one of us as members of the church, the future bride of Christ. The Lord was actually thanking the Father for bringing Him His future bride.

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