I had the pleasure of leading our congregation through a Seder/Passover meal a couple of years ago. I put together a little booklet called a “Haggadah“ to explain the symbolism behind each element of the meal. I made the booklet into a slide show for anyone interested. I’d encourage everyone to step through it and truly think about depth of Jesus’ participation in this meal as the actual Passover lamb. You can also download the booklet and print it out here along with an extra leaders guide: Christ in the Passover (It has a few extra meaningful notes in blue.) For a better understanding of the fact that Jesus deviated from the normal Passover meal during the 3rd cup (Cup of Redemption), I’d also encourage you to read this blog I wrote about Jewish wedding customs.
Click on the first pic and the rest will come up in “book” form.
We started studying Matthew last night in small group and I noticed something I never really saw before.
I knew that Matthew was written to new converts from Judaism in an attempt to prove that Jesus is the Messiah. Because of that, Matthew uses lots of Jewish phrases and he approaches the story of Jesus with a distinctively Jewish undertone. Anyway, what I had never noticed was all the ways that Matthew lines up with the Exodus. Exodus was a collective memory in the subconsciousness of the Jewish people, so Matthew appealed to them even on a subconscious level. Here’s what I’ve noticed so far: (I’m sure there’s more.)
Before the Exodus, God had been silent for over 400 years. Before Jesus’ birth, God had been silent for over 400 years.
Like Israel (God’s chosen people), Jesus came out of Egypt.
Israel began it’s journey to the promised land by passing through the Red Sea. Jesus passed through the Jordan and then began his journey to the cross.
Israel wandered and suffered in the desert. Jesus was tempted and suffered in the desert.
Israel followed the pillar of fire on it’s way to the promised land. Wise men followed a star on their way to Jesus.
This one is not from Matthew, but is in the Gospels – Moses’ was bringing Israel out of slavery in Egypt and his first miracle was to change water (the river) into blood. Jesus’ brought us out of slavery to sin and his first miracle was to turn water into wine. Later, he would call wine, his blood.
Anyway, I just thought it was all pretty interesting.
In class last night Dr. Loken asked us each to spend about 10 minutes and write our own 10 commandments around each of these 10 topics listed. It’s a good exercise; I’d encourage you to do it too. Here’s what I came up with:
1. Priorities – I will keep my personal relationship with God above my job.
2. Worship – I will worship outside the church.
3. Reverence – I will pay attention to the little things God has done. (Is there such a thing as a “little” thing?)
4. Time – I will faithfully continue my devotional time with Miranda.
5. Authority – I will respect the people God has placed above me, even if I disagree with them.
6. Life – When I have them someday, I will raise my children to know true life – that which only God can give.
7. Purity – When my thought life is tempted, I will seek the “way out” described by 1 Cor 10:13. “But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.”
8. Property – I will sacrifice my own stuff/desires so others can have more.
9. Tongue – I will speak what is right, true, noble, pure, uplifting/encouraging, and honoring to God.
10. Contentment – I will enjoy all that I have in spite of what the world tells me I need.