Jesus - The Ultimate Sacrifice Chapter 2 (Mt 26:2, Mk 14:1pt, Lk 22:1 & Jn 13:1)
2"As you know, the Passover is two days away—and the Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified"
1Now the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread were only two days away,…
1Now the Feast of Unleavened Bread, called the Passover, was approaching,
1It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love.
Jesus was a Jew, as a Jew He kept all the laws according to Moses, yet the Pharisees accused Him of breaking the law. In reality they themselves did not understand the law that God had given to Moses. Jesus therefore was very angry with them, they as spiritual leaders instead of leading the people to God, were misleading them.
The Pharisees pursued God in the rituals and customs and their hearts were full of pride and greed.
15"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as you are.
When we are given authority more is expected from us.
15But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.
To understand the Passover we will go to books of Genesis and Exodus.
In the book of Genesis Jacob was called 'Israel' and not all his decedents were known as Israelites. (To know more about being an Israelite read the teaching in Spiritual Milk – Am I an Israelite?)
There was a great famine during the time of Jacob. Now Joseph one of the twelve sons of Jacob who was doing well in Egypt and was like a Governor of Egypt for he had saved the Egyptians from dying in the famine. He called his father, his brothers and their households to Egypt so as to survive the famine.
After many years after the Pharaoh died and Joseph died, the Egyptians forgot how Joseph had saved them. They felt insecure with the Israelites, who were growing in strength. The Egyptians started torturing them more and more and even tried killing their new born babies. God’s hand was on them and God protected them.
Soon the Israelites forgot God and started worshiping the gods of the Egyptians. God’s face was turned away from the Israelites. After 400 years of suffering the cries of the Israelites reached God and God remembered his covenant with their fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
But God in his mercy send Moses to save the Israelites from the bondage of the Egyptians, the same way as God send Jesus His only Son to save us from the bondage of sin.
Since Moses was scared to speak in front of the Pharaoh, God sent Aaron, Moses’ elder brother with him. They asked Pharaoh to leave the Israelites for a few days so that they can worship God in the wilderness and come back. But God had hardened the heart of Pharaoh, and he did not allow the Israelites.
When God said that He hardened the heart of Pharaoh, He meant that He hardened it further. Pharaoh was already hating the Israelites before and made all the efforts to oppress them and destroy them.
God uses every one in His plan for Mankind. If you change your heart and turn to Him, good. He will lift you up, put His power in you and use you for His Glory. If you harden your heart, He will harden it further, then crush you and use you for His Glory. It is your choice how you want to add to God’s Glory, being with Him and being saved and being lifted up or going against Him and being destroyed and made an example.
God then demonstrated His power by setting loose ten plaques on the Egyptian. Nine of ten plaques were against the Egyptian gods. To prove that their gods were not gods and that only the Lord God was God.
The ten plaques were
1) Turning the water of the river Nile to blood. (Ex. 7:14-25)
2) Frogs were all over the place. (Ex. 8:1-15)
3) Gnats were all over the place. (Ex. 8:16-19)
4) Flies were all over the place. (Ex. 8:20-32)
5) Livestock were diseased and died. (Ex. 9:1-7)
6) Boils on Egyptians and their animals. (Ex. 9:8-12)
7) Thunder and hail and all that was in the open were destroyed man, animals and plants of the Egyptians. (Ex. 9:13-35)
8) Locusts came and devoured whatever was left of the plantation. (Ex. 10:1-20)
9) Darkness remained on the Egyptians for three days. (Ex. 10:21-29)
10) The first born of the Egyptians and their livestock were killed. (Ex. 12:29-42)
For example turning the river Nile to blood was because they worshiped the river Nile, it was called the father of life and was like a chief god for them. In the same way they had a calf god for fertility, a god for beauty, hygiene etc..
When God wanted to help the Israelites, He first proved to them that He is God and that all the other gods were nothing.
5And the Egyptians shall know that I am the LORD, when I stretch forth mine hand upon Egypt, and bring out the children of Israel from among them.
5Thus saith the LORD, In this thou shalt know that I am the LORD: ……
In the same way today too, when we pray to the Lord to intervene in our problems, first He says, ‘you will know that I am the Lord’. He will first bring down all the gods that you have placed on your altars. Your pride, your greed for money, fame, beauty, idolizing your husband, wife, children, girlfriend, boyfriend, etc..
That’s the reason you will have noticed that when you go for retreats and prayer services and ask God to help you, you find at times that more problems show at your door step. So please, before you ask God to help you, bring down all that idols that you have put as number one and make only the Lord as your God, Master and number one in your life.
When the Lord wanted to bring them out of Egypt He spoke to the Israelite through Moses and gave instructions to them how to prepare themselves for freedom from the Egyptians. In the same way the Lord speaks to us directly or through His messengers how to change and save ourselves from bondage of the evil one. If we follow them like the Israelites did we will come out of bondage with great substances like the Israelites did!
22But every woman shall borrow of her neighbour, and of her that sojourneth in her house, jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment: and ye shall put them upon your sons, and upon your daughters; and ye shall spoil the Egyptians.
35And the children of Israel did according to the word of Moses; and they borrowed of the Egyptians jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment:
36And the LORD gave the people favour in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they lent unto them such things as they required. And they spoiled the Egyptians.
The instructions given to Moses on how the Passover was to done are in book of Exodus chp. 12.
1 And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt saying,
2 This month shall be unto you the beginning of months: it shall be the first month of the year to you.
3 Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house:
4 And if the household be too little for the lamb, let him and his neighbour next unto his house take it according to the number of the souls; every man according to his eating shall make your count for the lamb.
5 Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats:
6 And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening.
7 And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it.
8 And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it.
9 Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with fire; his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof.
10 And ye shall let nothing of it remain until the morning; and that which remaineth of it until the morning ye shall burn with fire.
11 And thus shall ye eat it; with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and ye shall eat it in haste: it is the LORD's passover.
12 For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the LORD.
13 And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt.
14 And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the LORD throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever.
15 Seven days shall ye eat unleavened bread; even the first day ye shall put away leaven out of your houses: for whosoever eateth leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that soul shall be cut off from Israel.
We will go into the details of the sacrificial lamb latter during the last supper.
Now regarding yeast the Lord had given very strict instructions forbidding any yeast be used even in the bread, not only that but yeast was forbidden to be kept even in the house.
What is yeast?
Yeast is a micro-organism that ferments (breaks sugar into alcohol and carbon-dioxide). Something sweet is broken into something that indices your mind and something wasteful (useless). Only a pinch is required to ferment a large portion of dough.
In the New Testament too the Lord warned about yeast.
6 Then Jesus said unto them, Take heed and beware of the leaven (yeast) of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.
11 How is it that ye do not understand that I spake it not to you concerning bread, that ye should beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees?
Who were the Pharisees and the Sadducees?
The Israelites over the years were known as Jews. The Levis were assigned to do the work of the Tabernacle during the times of Moses. Over the years they formed into the Pharisees (Hebrew meaning ‘Separated ones’) who were the priest. They were deep into the studying the Law of Moses. They knew every word of the Law but without understanding and what they practiced was totally different.
The Sadducees (Hebrew meaning ‘Righteous ones’) like the Pharisees were connected to the 'Old church'. They mixed Greek ideology with the Jewish religion. For example they did not believe in resurrection, in spirit beings. They believed in rebirth, that after death a person can be punished by coming back as an animal or rewarded by coming as a person. They were well connected with the Romans and therefore exercised great power. They did not influence the masses so much as the Pharisees did, but the people feared them.
The Lord warned against following them.
12 Then understood they how that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.
1 In the mean time, when there were gathered together an innumerable multitude of people, insomuch that they trode one upon another, he began to say unto his disciples first of all, Beware ye of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.
The Lord even cursed them for what they were.
25 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess.
27 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness.
29 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous,
The Lord was telling the Israelites, when they were to leave Egypt not to take any of the teachings and traditions of the Egyptians with them.
God did not want man to involve any of man’s own knowledge or ways when it came to worshiping Him. In all the sacrifices to the Lord and throughout the Holy Week, yeast was totally banned.
Man lost the 'Godkind' of nature when Adam and Eve ate of the tree of knowledge of good and bad. Before that when God created the animals, He brought all the animals in front of Adam and Adam named each and every one. Also when God made Eve and brought her in front of him, Adam named her ‘Woman’, which means ‘Man with a womb’. Adam could see through Eve and also know the function of the parts of her body that God had made. To receive the same God kind of nature back the only way is to reject the worldly knowledge and surrender to God.
That does not mean that we must totally reject human knowledge and not educate ourselves. Even God understood this therefore there was only one sacrifice where yeast was permitted.
11 And this is the law of the sacrifice of peace offerings, which he shall offer unto the LORD.
12 If he offer it for a thanksgiving, then he shall offer with the sacrifice of thanksgiving unleavened cakes mingled with oil, and unleavened wafers anointed with oil, and cakes mingled with oil, of fine flour, fried.
13 Besides the cakes, he shall offer for his offering leavened bread with the sacrifice of thanksgiving of his peace offerings.
14 And of it he shall offer one out of the whole oblation for an heave offering unto the LORD, and it shall be the priest's that sprinkleth the blood of the peace offerings.
15 And the flesh of the sacrifice of his peace offerings for thanksgiving shall be eaten the same day that it is offered; he shall not leave any of it until the morning.
This was a thanksgiving sacrifice as a society to make peace with God. God understood that to live on earth, man needed to have earthly knowledge therefore it was permitted in only this sacrifice.
What is praying in tongues?
When we pray in tongues, we reject our earthly knowledge and speak words that do not have any earthly meaning but our spirit speaks volumes to God, beyond our normal understanding with the help of the Holy Spirit.
When the Israelites were celebrating the Passover they did it all dressed up ready to leave Egypt and ate in haste. In the same way the Lord tells us when we ask the Lord to free us from the bondage of the evil one, we should believe so before, that we are saved and act like God’s children leaving the past ways of life immediately. It is not like after a few days or in a month or two but it is written ‘in haste’, that means immediately.
In Mt 26:2 Jesus is know as the Son of Man. He was the Son of God but on earth He was fully man and represented mankind. He was the last Adam. We were born with a body that is imperfect and corruptible, but will resurrect with a body like Jesus perfect and incorruptible.
Another thing you should take a note of is that the Passover week was over lapping with the Passion of the Lord Jesus Christ.