The Passover is rich in symbolism and typology that point to Christ.
This month, Jews around the world will celebrate Passover, the feast that commemorates the great exodus from Egypt some 3,500 years ago. This watershed event in Jewish history is recorded in detail for us in Exodus 1-16.
What many Christians do not understand is that the Passover is rich in symbolism and typology that actually point to the atoning work of Christ at Calvary. As the apostle Paul, an Orthodox rabbi, wrote: “For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed” (1 Cor. 5:7, NIV).
I’ve listed some examples of the rich symbolism of the Passover lamb of Exodus 12 as it relates to Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God.
Everyone needed the lamb. “Each man is to take a lamb for his family, one for each household” (Ex. 12:3). The first requirement of the Passover was that everyone, without exception, had to have a lamb.
In the same way, the Bible is clear that all have sinned and everyone needs Christ for forgiveness and redemption from that sin: “There is no one who does good, not even one” (Ps. 14:3). There are no exceptions.
The lamb was unblemished. “The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect” (Ex. 12:5). The Passover lamb had to be without blemish and in the prime of life. Jesus, likewise, was free from the defect of sin and sacrificed in the prime of His life.
In one of my favorite verses–2 Corinthians 5:21–the apostle Paul states clearly that God made Him who had no sin to become sin for us. Also the apostle Peter says: “You were redeemed … with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect” (1 Pet. 1:18-19).
All took part in killing the lamb. “All the people of the community of Israel must slaughter them [the Passover lambs]” (Ex. 12:6). The root of most anti-Semitism is the false accusation and horrendous teaching that the Jews killed Jesus Christ. But who actually killed Christ? The Jewish people? No. The Romans? No.
It was all of us. Our sin killed Him. During the Passover, all the people of the community killed the Passover lamb. Christ, our Passover Lamb, willingly died for the sins of the entire world. As Jesus Himself said, “No one takes [My life] from Me, but I lay it down” (John 10:18, NKJV).
The blood of the lamb averted judgment. “I will pass through Egypt and strike down every firstborn. … The blood will be a sign for you … and when I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Ex. 12:12-13, NIV). God pronounced the judgment upon all in Egypt. He made no distinction between the Israelites and the Egyptians–but He also provided a way of escape. When His angel of death saw the blood on the doorposts, he passed over the houses, and the people inside were spared–thus the name “Passover.”
God still does not make an exception based on a person’s race, creed, color or gender. Judgment is upon all–“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23)–and that judgment is death–“for the wages of sin is death” (Rom. 6:23).
Through the blood of Christ applied to the “doorposts” of our hearts we are spared from eternal death. Yeshua, alluding to this great biblical event, declared: “I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved” (John 10:9, NKJV).
No bones of the lamb were broken. “Nor shall you break one of its bones” (Ex. 12:46). If you think what happened on the cross in this regard was just a coincidence, think again. The Passover ordinance was very strict in requiring that the sacrificial lamb have no broken bones. It held true with Jesus: “When [the soldiers] came to Jesus and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs” (John 19:33).
Why? Because Jesus is the fulfillment of the Passover lamb, and therefore none of His bones could be broken. In fact, He died on the cross while the other Passover lambs were being slaughtered throughout Israel.
I encourage you to study these Scriptures, study the feasts of the Lord, and learn about Jewish traditions and customs. Ask the Lord to reveal
the New Testament concealed in the Old Testament. I guarantee your faith will be deepened and enriched!