The first Feast I ever celebrated was the Passover. It is a beautiful time of remembrance of how the Almighty, with a strong hand, delivered a mixed multitude from the bondage of Egypt. You can find the account of the First Passover in Exodus 12. (I encourage you to read all of the Scriptures in Exodus leading up to chapter 12, so that you can see the awesome power of the Father on display.)
Exodus 2:24 tells how the people groaned from their torment, and the Father heard their cries, then He remembered His covenant with Abraham. The chapters after this describe the mighty plan of the Almighty to release them from their slavery. A series of horrendous plagues came upon the land of Egypt. Some of the plagues, the children of Israel endured, but for others, Yah sheltered them from the fierce judgments being placed on the land and the people. (I would love to go into greater detail of all that occurred but, what is on my heart is detailed in chapter 12. Again, please read the previous chapters to understand the magnitude of Yah’s mighty strength.)
This brings us to Exodus chapter 12. The people in the land had seen signs and wonders that had never been witnessed before. This chapter is the tenth and final plague, the death of the firstborn. Yah gave Moses simple instructions to relate to the people what they are to do, so that they would be spared from this last judgement. Here are those instructions…
[Exo 12:3-13 NASB]
3 “Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying, ‘On the tenth of this month they are each one to take a lamb for themselves, according to their fathers’ households, a lamb for each household. 4 ‘Now if the household is too small for a lamb, then he and his neighbor nearest to his house are to take one according to the number of persons in them; according to what each man should eat, you are to divide the lamb. 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. 7 ‘Moreover, they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses in which they eat it. 8 ‘They shall eat the flesh that same night, roasted with fire, and they shall eat it with unleavened bread and bitter herbs. 9 ‘Do not eat any of it raw or boiled at all with water, but rather roasted with fire, both its head and its legs along with its entrails. 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 YHWH’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 YHWH. 13 ‘The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live; and when I see the blood I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt.”
The night of the Passover, death indeed struck all the inhabitants of the land who did not heed these instructions, but those who did obey, were delivered from the bondage of Egypt and led on a journey where they again would be given the choice of life or death (Deut. 30: 15-20).
Each time I read about Yah delivering the people from the heavy yoke of their taskmasters, I can’t help but think about how He set me free from my own enslavement that I had gotten myself tangled up in. The thought so overwhelms me! I am an insignificant speck on this earth, yet the Creator of the Universe heard my cry and drew me in. Yah sent His only begotten Son to give me life and remove me from the death I was heading for (John 3:16). His Son, Yeshua (Jesus), is the perfect Lamb, who takes away the sins of the world (John 1:29)! HalleluYah!!
Oh it does give me deep joy thinking about my own deliverance, but for some reason, this year my heart feels so heavy as I am preparing for the Feast. I keep thinking about what it would have been like to be there, to actually take part in that first Passover. What would all the emotions be like? What would it look like? The thought so burdens me to tears!
In my mind, I image myself standing at a table, dressed in a raggedy linen gown. I gird up the middle of my gown and tie it about the waist. There I stand with a staff in one hand, eating hastily as I was instructed. Oh, but how could you even think to savor a meal with all the commotion going on outside? The terror of the screams and cries in the night. I can hear the neighbors I have known all my life, wailing and screaming because death had come to their door. These are the people I would have passed along the way each morning to gather water and food. I may have laughed with them, we may have shared a meal. I could have even witnessed the birth of their beautiful child that they are now holding lifeless within their arms! Oh the terror of it overcomes me! How can I stand safe inside while all this surrounds me? My heart wants me to run out the door and grab them and drag them into safety, pull them into the covering of the blood. But, if I am outside the doors, am I not outside His covering as well? I too am a first born child, would I not be struck down where I stood? I have to stay inside the house, under Yah’s covering! Oh why did they not heed those simple instructions? If they had obeyed they would have received life instead of this death that is overcoming them.
Oh I just weep over these thoughts my friend. Does this not sound like what will happen in the end? All these beautiful people surrounding us, our loved ones, friends, and neighbors, not all of them will not chose life! They will be exposed to harsh judgement because they rejected the blood of the Lamb, the covering that delivers us from death.
It’s hard to think that a just and loving Father could do this, but think what He is asking of us. His yoke is light, His way is easy, His reward is great! Some will choose the heavy yoke of sin, they will choose to disregard His simple instructions in exchange for the wide path of destruction. Yes, we could go out and try and grab them by the hand, dragging them in from the chaos. But, will they not look back like the wife of Lot in Sodom (Genesis 19)? Did she not witness the awesomeness of Yah as she and Lot sojourned with Abraham? Yet, even witnessing the miracles He preformed in her presence, she chose to look back, she chose to long for the burdensome harness of iniquity just like the people mourning for their first born in the land of Egypt.
As much as I want step outside of the house to pull them in, I am not the one who saves! Yah saves!! (Isaiah 12:2) 2 “Behold, God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid; For YHWH GOD is my strength and song, And He has become my salvation.” (Colossians 1:13-14) 13 “For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”
Oh Yah I pray that there is still time for our loved ones to humble themselves before You. I pray that Your Light shines through us to lead them to Your arms. Father please soften their hearts to receive Your Word, so that they would be led to repentance, turning away from death and turning toward You. I pray that they see the Lamb’s blood over our doors, and Your Spirit puts a burning desire in their hearts to do the same. Thank you Father for giving us the option to chose life, and then blessing us with Your peace and joy when we do.