When the hour was come, the same night in which He was betrayed,
Jesus sat down with the twelve apostles. He took bread and wine saying,
This is my Body for you, and this cup is the new covenant in my Blood,
This do you, in remembrance of me.
On the evening before He died, Jesus and His twelve apostles ate the Passover meal of roasted lamb in keeping with the observance dating back to the time of Moses. During the meal Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands (John 13:3), began to institute the New Passover, including the Foot-washing, the Unleavened Bread and the Wine, in which He, Himself, would become the sacrificial Lamb slain from the foundation of the world (Revelation 13:8).
As they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and broke it, and gave to them (Mark 14:22). We begin the Sacred Passover Service with prayer just as Jesus did. Passover is the memorial, or remembering of the death of our Savior, and deliverer, Jesus Christ. Passover is for all baptized, converted Christians.
Paul wrote, “In keeping Passover, we proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.”
(1Corinthians 11:26) Passover, then, is the anniversary of the sacrifice and death of Jesus Christ. Passover is observed just after sunset at the beginning of the 14th of Abib, the first month of the sacred calendar.
God Himself in the Scriptures commands the observance of Passover. In the Passover service we reflect on the death and the suffering of our Savior. For this reason, Passover is a sacred, solemn and sobering occasion.
The disciples were saddened when Jesus explained to them that He must go away. Jesus said, “And you now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man will take from you.” (John 16:22)
We not only experience the sobering aspects of Passover, we also realize at the same time that Jesus wants us to be encouraged and joyous because of the salvation that He has worked for us. Passover reveals what Jesus Christ has done, and is doing for us.
On the evening of that final New Testament Passover that Christ kept with His twelve apostles – the evening before His death – Jesus was very well aware of the horrible night of betrayal, abandonment, torture, and beating that lay just ahead for Him. Jesus knew that He was going to die the most horrible death ever – by taking on our sins.
Isaiah had written of the Messiah: “He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities.” (Isaiah 53:5) Jesus Christ inspired those prophecies in Isaiah. He knew exactly what was in store for Him on Passover. Yet, Jesus looked forward to His last Passover, knowing full well what He was going to experience.
Then Jesus said to His twelve apostles: “With fervent desire – I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer.” (Luke 22:15)
Jesus knew that the very Plan of God was being worked out in Him, and that, “The Father was in Him, reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing our trespasses unto us…” (2Corinthians 5:19) What a tremendous thing!
Jesus’ ordeal was indeed the fulfillment of what the Old Testament Passover pictured. All the Old Testament Prophecies of His sorrows and grief (Isaiah 53:3) as the sacrificial Lamb of God – the brutal scourging beyond recognition, His death and burial – came to fruition and was fulfilled in Jesus’ last Passover.
We keep the Passover on the evening before He died because of our faith and belief that Jesus has paid for the sins of all mankind. My sins… our sins. This night, we are renewing our commitment to have Christ live His life in us.
Because Jesus has paid our death penalty, we can have salvation. Jesus died so that we do not have to die the eternal death that we deserved – the eternal death we have earned.
“These are the feasts of the Lord, even holy convocations, which you shall proclaim in their seasons. In the fourteenth day of the first month at evening is the Lord’s Passover.” (Leviticus 23:4-5) The keeping of Passover is necessary for salvation. On this day each year, we re-live the awe-inspiring meaning of Christ’s Sacrifice – the Passover.
Moses was given instructions for Passover. “The Lord spoke unto Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, This month shall be unto you the beginning of months: it shall be the first month of the year to you. Speak you 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.” (Exodus 12:1-3)
God’s people became acquainted with their pet lamb for four days. The Passover was not an impersonal sacrifice. Jesus knows us, and Jesus is to be known by us.
“Your lamb shall be without blemish. This is a picture of the sinless-ness of Jesus Christ.
The point is that Jesus did not die for His sin because He had none – He knew not sin – He never sinned – not once (2Corinthians 5:21). Jesus died for my sins, and our sins.
“You shall keep your lamb up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening. And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper doorpost of the houses, wherein they shall eat it.” This was a new and very strange custom. It pictured God protecting, delivering, and redeeming those who would participate in the Passover, and it pointed to the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus.
“They shall eat the flesh in that night, roasted with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it.” (Exodus 12:5-8) The unleavened bread also represents the sinless life of Jesus Christ (2Corinthians 5:21).
“Thus shall you eat it; with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and you shall eat it in haste: it is the Lord’s Passover.” The Israelites were about to be spared – saved and delivered from slavery. The Lord said, “ 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 (Eternal) Lord.”
There was a death penalty on the Egyptians because of their sins, and they were destroyed. Jesus will again execute judgment. It is the Passover that can spare us. “And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where you 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.” This is the place the word “Passover” is first found.
In the same way – Jesus’ blood covers our sins – so we too will be passed-over and saved.
“And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; (a reminder – a remembering) and you shall keep it a feast to the Lord throughout your generations; you shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever.” (Exodus 12:11-14)
Jesus Christ was without blemish. He died for our sins because He had no sin of His own to die for. Passover pictures our being delivered from the bondage of sin today, just as that original Old Testament Passover was for the Israelites – the actual deliverance from Egyptian captivity and slavery.
Notice the exact timing of the Passover service. Passover is observed just after sunset at the very beginning of the 14th of Abib (the first month in spring). Paul learned this directly from Jesus Christ and taught it to the Christians at Corinth. Paul wrote:
“For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:” Judas Iscariot had just betrayed Jesus for 30 pieces of silver. “And when He had given thanks, He broke it, and said, this is my body, for you: do this in remembrance of me.” (1Corinthians 11:24 notice that Passover is a remembering, a memorial.)
“After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, this cup is the new covenant in my blood: this do you, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me. For as often as you eat this bread, and drink this cup, you do show the Lord’s death until he comes.” I killed Jesus – He forgave me – I must be living my life worthy of that forgiveness. Are my relationships, conduct and dealings with God and my fellow man, what they should be?
“Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eats and drinks unworthily, eats and drinks damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body.” (1Corinthians 11:23-29)
None of us are “worthy.” We are not perfect as only Jesus is. The Scripture says that we have to be working on ourselves. “Until we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.” (Ephesians 4:13)
We need Passover because we have not attained to the perfection of Christ. We are all members of the Lord’s Body. “We, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.” (Romans 12:5) Are we doing everything humanly possible to live as Christians toward one another? Our eternal life is at stake. “For this cause [not discerning the Lord’s Body] many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep. (1Corinthians 11:30) Many are spiritually weak and sickly among us, (the Church of God) and many sleep because we are not discerning the other members of the Lord’s body.
“Then Jesus said unto them, Truly, truly, I say unto you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, you have no Life in you. Whosoever eats my flesh, and drinks my blood, has eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.”
This is a tremendous promise. Our Faith tells us this is true, if we partake of the Body and Blood of Jesus in the Passover service. “For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.”
We must partake of Passover: if we are to be His, if His sacrifice is to be applied to our sins, and if we are to receive eternal life. We are not sufficient to save ourselves – we cannot save ourselves. We are totally dependent on the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, because we have earned the second death by our very own sins.
John the Baptist harkens back to the Old Testament Passover Lamb. “The next day John sees Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which takes away the sin of the world.” (John 1:29) Jesus is the Passover Lamb. It is only His sacrifice that can take away our sins. We must have a thankful attitude toward Jesus Christ. Only He can pay the price that will keep us from dying the second death.
With Christ in us, we overcome sin. Only with God’s Holy Spirit can we start to grasp the tremendous continuing damage that sin does. Sin separates us from God our Father. It is only with God’s Holy Spirit that we lead lives that are increasingly without sin.
Christ is Our Passover.
This next verse is speaking about examining ourselves, ceasing from sinning, and eradicating sin from our lives. God, through His Spirit, shows us the harmfulness of sin. We have been putting the leaven out of our homes in preparation for the Days of Unleavened Bread. Symbolically, this shows our sincere desire to put sin out of our lives. “Purge out therefore the old leaven, [sin] that you may be a new lump, as you are unleavened. For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us.” (1Corinthians 5:7)
Our sins have earned us the death penalty (Romans 6:23). Our Faith is that Jesus Christ has paid our death penalty for us – in our place. The Old Testament symbol of the lamb has been changed, that is, replaced by the Lamb of God. Jesus is the Lamb of God. He says that we are to eat of His Body and Blood – represented by the unleavened bread and the wine.
The time came for the preparation of the Old Testament Passover lamb that would be eaten on the evening of Jesus’ last Passover on earth. “Then came the day of unleavened bread, when the Passover [lamb] must be killed. And [Jesus] sent Peter and John, saying, Go and prepare for us the Passover [meal], that we may eat it.” (Luke 22:7-8)
“And when the hour was come, [there is a definite specified time for Passover] He [Jesus] sat down, and the twelve apostles with Him. And He said unto them, with desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer.” (Luke 22:14-15)
“And [Jesus] took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: do this in remembrance of me. Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, this cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is shed for you.” (Luke 22:19-20) Jesus knew that He was the Passover Lamb that must shed his blood and die for all mankind.
We need the Passover for eternal life. It is commanded for Christians. We must take the Passover. The eating and drinking are directly associated with eternal life. Christ came in the flesh and willingly gave His life to pay the penalty for my sins, our sins.
We must “Put on” Christ. That evening, Jesus added a New Testament concept for Christians. Jesus added something to the New Testament Passover service that was missing in the Old Testament Passover.
Jesus would show by the Foot-washing that God’s way is to be a servant to all people.
The Foot-washing is about learning to serve one another in a spiritual way. It is an ordinance that embraces many concepts:
It is a reaffirmation of our baptismal vow and covenant to sin no more.
It is an annual reminder to forgive others.
It teaches the self-sacrifice of laying down our lives for each other.
It confirms that Christians must humble themselves as Jesus did.
It shows that we must be spiritual servants to our fellow man.
It symbolizes a yearly cleansing in order to partake of Christ’s body and blood.
That Last Passover evening, the unconverted disciples were still arguing about who would be greatest over all the others. They were still over-bearing and controlling, possessing a spirit of competition and strife. Many years later, men still exhibit this same desire to be in a commanding position over others. Jesus had to address the problem.
“Jesus called [the disciples] unto Him, and said, You know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them. But it shall not be so among you: [that is not Christianity in action] but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister.” (Matthew 20:25-26) To be great in the Kingdom of God, we must become the spiritual servant, maid, waiter, and nurse of others.
In John 13, we see the institution of the Foot-washing service. Only the apostle, John, covers the practice of the Foot-washing because it took a good deal of spiritual growth and conversion to grasp the concept that Jesus was giving them during the Passover service.
“Now before the feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end. And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him; Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God, and was going back to God; He rose from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a servant’s towel, and girded himself.” (John 13:1-4) Jesus changed roles. He laid aside his role of Master to illustrate that He had come as a mere servant to all mankind.
“After that he poured water into a basin, and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded. Then He came to Simon Peter: and Peter said unto him, Lord, do you wash my feet? Jesus answered and said unto him, What I am doing, you do not know now; but you shall know later.” (John 13:5-7) It simply looked like Jesus was washing dirty feet.
“Peter saith unto Him, You shalt never wash my feet.” But, Jesus says that the Foot-washing attitude is an absolute requirement for salvation. (God understands that there are those who are amputees, or have other impairments that prevent them from actually taking full part in the Foot-washing service.)
“Jesus answered him, If I wash thee not, you have no part with me. Simon Peter saith unto him, Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head. Jesus saith to him, He that is washed [all over at their baptism] needeth not except to wash his feet, but is clean every whit: and you are clean, but not all. For He knew who should betray him; therefore said he, You are not all clean.”
“So after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments, and was set down again, he said unto them, Do you know what I have done to you?” (John 13:12) They did not, but they would understand later.
“You call me Master and Lord: and you say well; for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Master [teacher], have washed your feet; you also ought [We are obligated, it is our duty] to wash one another’s feet.” (John 13:13-14) Not only on Passover evening – but also as a way of life – we must continually possess a spirit of reconciliation, forgiveness, and service in humility to others.
“For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. Most assuredly, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him.” Jesus was greater than His disciples, yet He set them an example as their servant. “If you know these things, happy are you if you do them.” (John 13:15-17)
Christ taught us that we must have true humility and be lowly and needy in our own eyes. The Scripture says, “Let this mind be in you… that is in Christ.” (Philippians 2:5). Jesus, who was worthy of all honor, respect and reverence, and in whom everyone should serve continually, served us. Instead, He laid aside all of His glory, honor and privilege as an example for us to lay aside all independence, hard-heartedness, superiority and power over others, and to serve others.
Foot-washing was a “lowly” servant’s job. At the very end of Jesus’ life, the Apostles still did not understand this servant / humility concept. Let’s make sure that it is not lost on us. Washing one another’s feet is only a first step in learning to literally lay our lives down for one another. Jesus went on to say:
“A new commandment I give unto you, That you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” (John 13:34) How did Jesus love us? He forgave us all. Jesus died for us, making salvation possible for us. In doing so, Jesus set us an example of how we must be laying down our very lives for one another. This evening, in the Passover service, we are renewing our commitment to God.
The Foot-washing ceremony was instituted by Jesus to symbolize a yearly cleansing – a renewal of, and rededication to our initial conversion and resulting cleanliness through baptism.
The Foot-washing represents the continual renewal of the grace of God required to cover our daily sins after the initial justification brought by Christ’s sacrifice.
Pause here for the Foot-washing service.
(If you are taking the Passover alone, reflect on how to spiritually serve others.)
And now, we contemplate the Bread of Life.
The Unleavened Bread is symbolic of Christ’s Body. The people of Jesus’ day were saying to Him, “Prove that you are the Messiah”
“They said therefore unto him, What sign can you show then, that we may see, and believe thee? What [miracle] do you work? Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat. Then Jesus said unto them, Truly, truly, I say unto you, Moses did not give you that bread from heaven; [It was Jesus, God of the Old Testament, who gave them manna] but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven.” (John 6:30-32)
Jesus is that true bread – that food which endures to everlasting life. How can we receive that True Bread? “For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. Then said they unto him, Lord, always give us this bread. And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that comes to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.” (John 6:33-35)
“But I said unto you, That you also have seen me, and did not believe. All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. For this is the Father’s will which has sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again on the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day. The Jews then murmured at him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven. And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven?” (John 6:36-42)
“Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves. No man can come to me, unless the Father which hath sent me draws him: and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me. Not that any man hath seen the Father, except He which is of God, [Jesus speaking of Himself said] He has seen the Father. Truly, truly, I say unto you, He that believeth on me [that includes Faith and obedience,] has everlasting life.” (John 6:43-47)
Jesus said, “I am that bread of life. Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread [speaking of Himself] which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat? Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoso eats my flesh, and drinks my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.” (John 6:48-55)
Here is where Jesus gives us the meaning – Jesus must live in us! “He that eats my flesh, and drinks my blood, dwells in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live because of the Father: so he that eats me, even he shall live by me. This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he who eats of this bread shall live forever.” (John 6:56-58)
We become one Body of Christ by all partaking of the Bread of Life that is Jesus Christ. Christ lives His life in us through the indwelling of Holy Spirit, making us part of the one Body of Jesus Christ. Speaking of the cup of the fruit of the vine, Paul wrote, “The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the fellowship of the Blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the fellowship of the Body of Christ?” (1Corinthians 10:16)
The next verse is the most important scripture in the Passover service – we must understand it:
“For we being many, are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that One Bread.”
That is Jesus Christ – the Bread of Life. (1Corinthians 10:17)
Jesus lives His life in us – making us a part of His Body – the one and only body of Christ. The small piece of unleavened bread we eat during the Passover service symbolizes Jesus’ body. He knew what He was going to endure for the sins of the world. This night pictures those events. Jesus paid for our healing when he was tortured beyond recognition. He now sits on His throne at the Father’s right hand on high, but He abased Himself to die among thieves and sinners.
The sacrifice of the Son of God is an incredible thing! Jesus inspired these words, as the God of the Old Testament. “Who hath believed our report? [Only those who are called] and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed? [We are the only ones who can see what God is doing.] For He shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath neither form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. [Jesus was not good looking, or extra handsome] He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. [Brethren, we too, abandoned Him] Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; [Peter paraphrased this verse this way]: “He bore our sins in his own body on the stake, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: [in other words Jesus suffered so that we could be considered righteous] and with his stripes we are healed.” (Isaiah 53:1-5, 1Peter 2:24)
“All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he opens not his mouth… Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, [Jesus is King of kings] and He shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.” (Isaiah 53:6-7,12)
Jesus desires that we be “at one” with Him. (By being “one” with each other as well)
Jesus is the one who forgives all our iniquities. (sins)
He is the one who heals all our infirmities.
He is the one who redeems our lives from destruction.
He is our elder brother.
We are a part of His one Body – the Body of Christ (Ephesians 4:12, 1Corinthians 12:27).
“For as the body is one [person], and hath many members, [arms and legs, etc.] and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. [All of us, individual members, make up the Body of Christ.] For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit… That there should be no schism [division] in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. And whether one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it. [Not being jealous or competitive] Now you are the Body of Christ, and members in particular.” (1Corinthians 12:12-13, 25-27) [Individually, we are each a “part” of the Body of Christ.]
Christ’s beating, betrayal, torment, afflictions, wounds – all of His passion, anguish, and chastisement – all these “Stripes” paid for our healing (Isaiah 53:5). Jesus fully expects us to follow in His steps: “For what glory is it, if, when you be buffeted for your faults, you shall take it patiently? But if, when you do well, and suffer for it, you take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. For even hereunto were you called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him [Father] that judges righteously: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes you were healed.” (1Peter 2:20-24) [“Stripes” refers to the entire ordeal that Jesus suffered.]
We ask God’s blessing on the Unleavened Bread as Jesus did. “When He had given thanks, He broke the bread, and said, this is my body, for you: do this in remembrance of me.”
As we bow our head, we ask God to Bless the Unleavened Bread as the symbol of Our Lord’s body. We thank God for the sacrifice of Jesus. He died so that we might be reconciled to the Father. We thank God for His forgiveness, mercy and love. We thank God for Jesus’ willingness to come down to this earth. For God’s willingness to send Him. We pray to our Father that He will give us Jesus’ attitude of selfless humility and service. We ask Him to bless our partaking of this bread, as we reflect on its significance.
Pause here to partake of the Unleavened Bread.
Having taken of the Unleavened Bread, next we come to the Wine – the symbol of Christ’s shed blood. The Bread and the Wine are symbols of the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ. Our taking of them signifies our willingness to accept His sacrifice and welcome His presence in our lives. It is only through Christ and His sacrifice that we receive His gift of salvation and life.
We should be convicted daily of our need for the sacrifice of Christ – for the shed blood of Jesus Christ – to cover our sins. “Jesus took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink of it; all of you. For this is my blood of the new covenant,
which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”
“Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own blood he entered in once into the Holy Place, having obtained eternal redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies to the purifying of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?” (Hebrews 9:12-14)
We do not have to pay our own penalty – we have been bought back from death. “In whom [Jesus] we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.” (Ephesians 1:7)
We see here an example of our reconciliation with the Father.
“For it pleased the Father that in Him [Jesus] should all fullness dwell; And, having made peace through the blood of his cross / stake, by Him [Jesus] to reconcile all things unto Himself [Father]; by Him [Jesus], I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven. And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath He [Jesus] reconciled in the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblamable and unreprovable in His [Father’s] sight: If you continue [it is conditional – not once saved always saved] in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel.” (Colossians 1:19-23)
We ask God’s blessing on the Wine as Jesus did. “Jesus took the cup, and when He had given thanks, He gave it to them.” (Mark 14:23)
As we bow our head, we ask God to bless the wine as a symbol of Christ’s shed blood. We thank God that His Plan is being worked out in us. We thank Him for Christ willingly submitting to the Father’s Will – even shedding His blood unto death. We thank God for our calling and the token of His life that makes us His children at this time. We pray to have a right attitude. We thank our Father and Jesus Christ for living in us, and helping us to live as Christians must. We reverently drink this wine as a renewal of our acceptance of the blood of Jesus Christ for the removal and covering of our sins.
Pause here to drink in of the wine reverently.
For the remainder of the Passover service we read some selected passages of Scripture.
John 13:33 Little children, yet a little while I am with you. You shall seek me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, you cannot come; so now I say to you.
John 13:34 A new commandment I give unto you, That you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.
John 13:35 By this shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you have love one to another.
John 14:10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.
John 14:14 If you shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.
John 14:15 If you love me, keep my commandments.
John 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Helper, that it may abide with you forever;
John 14:17 Even the Spirit of truth; which the world cannot receive, because it sees it not, neither knoweth it: but you know it; for it dwells with you, and shall be in you.
John 14:18 I will not leave you comfortless as orphans: I will come to you.
John 14:19 Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but you see me: because I live, you shall live also.
John 14:20 At that day you shall know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.
John 14:21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.
John 14:22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that you wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?
John 14:23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we [that is Jesus and the Father] will come unto him, and make our abode [our home] with him.
John 15:4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can you, except you abide in me.
John 15:5 I am the vine, you are the branches: He that abides in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me you can do nothing.
John 15:6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.
John 15:7 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, you shall ask what you will, and it shall be done unto you.
John 15:8 Herein is my Father glorified, that you bear much fruit; so shall you be my disciples.
John 15:9 As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue you in my love.
John 15:10 If you keep my commandments, you shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.
John 15:11 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.
John 15:12 This is my commandment, That you love one another, as I have loved you.
John 15:13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
John 15:14 You are my friends, if you do whatsoever I command you.
John 15:15 Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knows not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.
We did not choose this way of life. God called us into it by His grace. What is our duty?
John 15:16 You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that you should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever you shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
How are we to live?
John 15:17 These things I command you, that you love one another.
John 16:5 But now I go my way to him that sent me; and none of you asks me, Where are you going?
John 16:6 But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart.
John 16:7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Helper will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send it unto you.
John 16:22 And you now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you.
John 16:28 I came forth from the Father, and am come into the world: again, I leave the world, and go to the Father.
John 16:32 Behold, the hour cometh, yea, is now come, that you shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave me alone: and yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me.
That is exactly what happened: All the disciples scattered in weakness – leaving Jesus to face His trial alone – betrayed and abandoned.
This is Jesus’ prayer to His Father on the night before He died.
Could this be our last Passover – we never know – do we??? It is a sobering and somber thought.
John 17:1 These words spoke Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee:
John 17:2 As you have given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as you have given him.
John 17:3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.
John 17:4 I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which you gave me to do.
John 17:5 And now, O Father, glorify you me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.
John 17:6 I have manifested your name unto the men which you gave me out of the world: thine they were, and you gave them me; and they have kept your word.
John 17:7 Now they have known that all things whatsoever you have given me are of thee.
John 17:8 For I have given unto them the words which you gave me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that you did send me.
John 17:9 I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which you have given me; for they are thine.
John 17:10 And all mine are thine, and thine are mine; and I am glorified in them.
John 17:11 And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom you have given me, that they may be one, as we are.
John 17:12 While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that you gave me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the Scripture might be fulfilled.
John 17:13 And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.
John 17:14 I have given them your word; and the world has hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
We live differently; we believe differently, we stand for the Truth because of Christ in us, the hope of glory:
John 17:15 I pray not that you should take them out of the world, but that you should keep them from the evil.
John 17:16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
John 17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
John 17:18 As you have sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.
John 17:19 And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.
John 17:20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;
John 17:21 That they all may be one; as you, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that you have sent me.
John 17:22 And the glory which you gave me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:
John 17:23 I in them, and you in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that you have sent me, and have loved them, as you have loved me.
John 17:24 Father, I will that they also, whom you have given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which you have given me: for you loved me before the foundation of the world.
John 17:25 O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that you have sent me.
John 17:26 And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.
Thank God that we can keep the Passover!
Matthew 26:29-30 Closing hymn instructions.
Matthew 26:29 But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.
Picture that day when we will keep the Passover with Jesus in His Father’s Kingdom.
Matthew 26:30 And when they had sung a hymn, they went out into the mount of Olives.
In The Bible Hymnal page 41 “In Thy Loving Kindness Lord.” From Psalm 51
End: The Passover Service