Rabbi Schneider - The Passover Meal
Cynthia Schneider: Welcome to Discovering the Jewish Jesus. Today we have a special episode where we are celebrating a Messianic Passover Seder. And Rabbi and I are celebrating it with friends and family.
Rabbi Schneider: It's such a beautiful time of the year. Passover is the crown jewel, honey, of the Jewish feast. We'll be going through the haggadah which is the order of service for the Passover Seder. I'm gonna talk about how Jesus fulfills Passover. You're gonna see mysteries revealed. And you're gonna observe Cynthia lighting the candles. Because in Judaism, the lighting of the candles separates the sacred from the secular. So when Cynthia lights the candles, it's a key that we're entering into a very special and a holy time. You know Jesus was introduced to the world as the Lamb of God. John identified Him as the Lamb because Jesus fulfills the ancient Passover lamb. Join us for a very important episode.
All together: Dovid Melech, Melech Israel, Dovid Melech, Hai Yai Yai Yai Yai.
Cynthia Schneider: Baruch Ata Adonai Elohaynu Melech Ha-olam. Asher Kidashanu B'mitzva-tav vitzee-vahnu l'had leek-nair shel yom tov. Blessed art Thou, O Lord our God, King of the universe, who sanctifies us by Thy commandments and has ordained that we kindle the Passover lights.
Rabbi Schneider: The Passover has begun. And during the course of the Seder, we will drink from our cups and replenish them a total of four times. Let's all raise together the first cup.
All together: With this cup, we commit our observance to the Lord, and pray for His blessing upon the rest of the service to follow.
Rabbi Schneider: And our men.
Men: Blessed art Thou, O Lord our God, King of the universe, who created the fruit of the vine.
All together: Amen.
Rabbi Schneider: And amen. It is concerning this first cup that Messiah declared...
All together: "Take this, and divide it among yourselves; for I say to you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the Kingdom of God shall come".
Rabbi Schneider: When did Jesus make that statement? Anybody know?
Pastor Anita: The Last Supper.
Rabbi Schneider: Yes! When He was celebrating Passover with His disciples. He lifted up the Passover wine, and He said "I'm not gonna be able to drink this with you again until the kingdom of God has come". He knew He was going to the Father, and that He wouldn't be able to be with His people again in the form that He was with us on Earth until He returned again when we'd be able to touch Him once again. And so what an awesome thing to realize that Passover and Jesus, they're not two separate things! Yeshua is the fulfillment of Passover! You know Paul told us that Christ has become our Passover. Now lemme ask you this question Brondon. When John the Baptist identified Jesus as the Lamb of God, "behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world," what do you think was in John's mind when he pointed at Jesus and said "behold the Lamb"?
Pastor Brondon: The Passover.
Rabbi Schneider: The Passover! But don't most Christians miss that completely? They miss it completely. I mean a lot of times unfortunately, due to antisemitism that's been in the Church for almost 2,000 years, Jesus is completely separated in the mind of many Christians from who He really is. He's the King of the Jews. From the very beginning, John identified Him as the Lamb of God. And in the book of Revelation, Pastor Anita, we find that no one was able to open the scroll. As John was seeing the scroll being opened in the book of Revelation. And John began to weep, because no one was able to open the scroll. But finally somebody came forward to open the scroll. Who was that person that came to open the scroll?
Pastor Anita: The Lamb of God.
Rabbi Schneider: The Lamb of God! I mean beloved this is like Jewish roots, this is Jewish Roots 101! It really is. We need to identify Jesus with where He comes from. This is why the first chapter of the New Testament, Matthew 1:1 begins by tracing Jesus' genealogy back to David and back to Abraham. Matthew begins by saying "This is the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the Son of David and the Son of Abraham". That's what we're doing today. Jesus said when He celebrated His Passover with His disciples, that Last Supper that we spoke of a moment ago, "As often as you do this," meaning what?
Pastor Anita: Take Passover.
Rabbi Schneider: Take Passover. "Do it in remembrance of me". So Pastor Brondon this is all about Passover. This is all about Yeshua tonight. Praise God. As we lift our cups to the Lord, we say this blessing. Baruch Ata Adonai Elohaynu Melech Ha-olam, borei pri hagafen. Blessed art Thou O Lord our God, King of the universe, who brings forth the fruit of the vine. So Father God Baruch HaShem we do this unto You. The cup of sanctification. We're set apart. The reason that I'm wearing this white gown tonight, is it symbolizes that we are set apart. We're called out of the world and we are holy to the Lord through the blood of the Lamb. And so the concept is I'm dressed in white tonight, but what I'm really doing is dressing in white in symbolism of all of us. That because of what Yeshua has done, we all stand before Father God even as the high priest of Israel did, cleansed and washed, sanctified through the blood of Yeshua. Even as the children of Israel were set apart and sanctified through the blood of the Lamb.
Pastor Anita: Amen, Amen.
Rabbi Schneider: Ritual washings have been part of the Jewish life since God commanded Aaron to bathe his hands and feet before approaching the altar of the Lord. And so we customarily wash our hands at this time as a token of our desire to live lives of acceptable service to God Almighty. And so it's really interesting when we think about this custom amongst the people of Israel, amongst the Jewish people, to wash themselves, particularly before ceremonial meals like this, to wash themselves even as Aaron was washed before entering into his role as high priest. It's customary for me to wash myself as a representative of all of us at the Passover meal. It's a way of once again asserting the fact that our sins are washed away, that we stand before the Lord, holy and blameless. And we think about this concept because we read in the Brit Chadashah, the New Testament, that when Jesus, during this part of the Seder where it was customary just for the leader of the Seder to wash themselves, Jesus rolled it out and He began to wash the disciples' feet as a servant. Remember Peter said "Lord, no". He felt unworthy. He just felt, I'm unclean. And I know that in our life we all struggle with that sometimes. I mean God just wants to pour out His love and His favor on us, but we just feel that we're not worthy of it. We're not worth it. We know who we are, we know our sin, we have this shame, and that's what Peter felt. But yet the Lord said to him, "Peter, unless you let me wash your feet, you have no place with me". And Peter said, "Then you not only wash my feet, wash my whole body". But I think it really is a deep truth because if we're sensitive in the spirit world, we'll realize that there's times that the Holy Spirit wants to love us and bless us and wants to fellowship with us, but we push Him away, cause we feel unworthy. But the whole concept is that that's what the grace of God is. It's His love and unconditional favor on us, despite the fact that we're not worthy, "not by deeds of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy has He saved us". So it was during this time, perhaps in the Seder meal that's recorded in Scripture, that Jesus began to wash the disciples' feet. And I wash my hands, but I wash my hands as the leader of the Seder, not just for you, but as a ceremonial fact that all our hands , our whole bodies, like Peter said, from our head to our feet, is washed in the blood of the Lamb.
Rabbi Schneider: For all of us. We're washed, in Messiah Yeshua. Clean, holy and blameless.
Pastor Anita: Amen.
Pastor Leo: Thank you, Jesus.
Rabbi Schneider: We have many elements of the Seder tonight, we're gonna go through them all, the horseradish, the haroset, the shankbone, the egg, the parsley, the lettuce, but I think it's important to realize that there's only three elements of the Seder that are biblical. Does anybody know what the three elements of the Seder that are commanded to be part of the observance is?
Pastor Leo: Bitter herbs.
Rabbi Schneider: The bitter herbs. Pastor Josh?
Pastor Josh: The matzah.
Rabbi Schneider: The matzah. And what else?
Cynthia Schneider: The shankbone.
Rabbi Schneider: The shankbone. Which actually it's not the shankbone, right, but it's the lamb. But since there's no longer a temple standing today and sacrifices can't be offered, we can no longer offer the lamb, we offer in lieu of that the shankbone of the lamb. We'll now say the prayer over the matzah. Baruch Ata Adonai Elohaynu Melech Ha-olam, hamotzi lehem min ha'aretz.
All together: Blessed art Thou, O Lord our God, King of the universe, who brings forth bread from the earth.
Rabbi Schneider: Behold this Seder plate and these traditional symbols.
All together: What do they mean, and of what do they speak?
Rabbi Schneider: The story of Passover is a story of deliverance from bondage, and all of the elements of the Passover meal are part of the portrait of redemption.
All together: What is the meaning of the karpas, or greens, and the salt water?
Men: The greens represent life, and the salt water represents the tears of life. Before we eat the greens, we dip them into the salt water, for truly...
All together: A life unredeemed is a life immersed in tears.
Rabbi Schneider: There are several layers of understanding as it represents the karpas that we're about to eat. First of all, karpas is a vegetable and it's green. What time of year, Ashlynn, do we celebate the Passover?
Rabbi Schneider: The spring, exactly. And so during the spring, new life is coming from the ground. And so Passover represents newness of life. The karpas represents Israel that was young and green, and in the springtime of their nation. They were just about to be delivered out of Egypt and be born. So the Lord delivered them out of Egypt by all the plagues He poured out on Pharaoh and the Egyptians. And when they got to the Red Sea, as the Egyptians were still trying to kill them, pursuing them, what did God do? He did a miracle. He parted the Red Sea, right? And the Israelites were able to walk through to the other side. But what happened in response to that? Egypt tried to follow them, still pursuing them. Unfortunately for the Egyptians, when Israel got to the other side, the sea closed in and drowned Egypt in the sea. And so what se do is we look at the dipping of the parsley which represented Israel into the salt water that represented the Red Sea, and we say Israel was young and green and in the springtime of their nation. They went into the Red Sea, once we dip. But what happened? Egypt tried to follow. Egypt also went into the Red Sea. But what happened when Egypt went into the Red Sea? Bam, hatch. God swallowed 'em up down the throat. Let's take and eat. We'll pass that salt water around.
All together: What is the meaning of the hazeret, the root of bitter herb?
Men: This horseradish root reminds us that the root of life is often bitter, as it certainly was for the sons of Israel in the land of Egypt.
All together: And what is the meaning of the maror, the bitter herb itself?
Men: As we partake of the freshly ground horseradish, we are reminded afresh of how bitter life is without redemption.
Rabbi Schneider: The horseradish, the bitter herbs of course for Israel in the ancient times 3500 years ago, represented the bitter bondage that they were in under Pharaoh and under the Egyptians. But today, people are still under bondage. It's a different type of bondage, it's a subtle bondage. It's being under the forces of darkness that are driving people to try to find satisfaction, beating down on them, oppressing them, every single day and it's an unending cycle. And so, during this part of the Seder, what we do is we think about where would we have been, and what would our lives would have been like if Father wouldn't have come to us and revealed Himself to us through the person of His son. We'd be part of the world, we'd be searching in places that would leave us empty. Drained and depressed and oppressed. Instead we have a life in Jesus that keeps on getting fuller and fuller and fuller.
Cynthia Schneider: Yes, amen, amen.
Rabbi Schneider: And so the bitter herbs help us to position ourselves and root ourselves in truth. We have something to be thankful for, even when life is hard, we have something to be thankful for. We have purpose, we have identity, we have a reason for living, and praise God we're alive!
Rabbi Schneider: You know? I think sometimes about the fact, that God didn't have to create me.
Pastor Leo: That's right.
Rabbi Schneider: Every day I wake up, it's a gift, I mean, my heart's beating all through the night when I'm not even aware of it. God's keeping me alive. Every breath we take is a gift. And so we partake of the horseradish just like Israel does to remember that one time we were in bondage, but God has set us free. Set us free in terms of Israel's history, delivering them from Egypt, setting us free today in the truth. So what we're gonna do right now is we're gonna distribute the horseradish, and we're gonna put it on a piece of matzah. And we're gonna remember a point in our life, where we were lost, afraid, anxious, whatever it looked like before we met Jesus. And we're gonna express thanks to Him in our heart for where we are today because of Him. It might not be easy right now but I'll tell you what, we're a lot better off then we used to be. So let's take, beloved, of the maror, the better herb.
Pastor Leo: Thank you, Jesus.
All together: But what is the meaning of the haroset, and why is it sweet to the taste?
Men: The haroset is a reminder of the mortar with which the Israelits made bricks for Pharoah.
All together: But why should such a sweet mixture represent such bitter toil?
Men: Even the most bitter labor is sweetened by the promise of redemption.
Rabbi Schneider: Let's once again take a piece of matzah and dip it in the haroset, and realize that even though we've had bad times in our life, Father God has used our bad times even for good, because He causes all things to work together for good to those that love Him and are called according to His purpose in Messiah Jesus. And in fact often times the hard times in our life are the foundation for all the good things that come. So Father God we bless You that You use even the difficult times in our life for Your glory and Your good purposes.
All together: Amen.
Rabbi Schneider: That's really good, isn't it?
Cynthia Schneider: Really delicious.
Rabbi Schneider: I love the horseradish personally too, I think I enjoy all of it. Another article on the Seder plate, another ceremonial food that we oftentimes eat during Passover is lettuce. You see the piece of lettuce on the Seder plate, I've got one of course on my plate. And this was not commanded in the Scriptures, but it was added by the Rabbis because it means something beautiful and significant. And what the lettuce symbolizes is that when Israel first came to Egypt, they were treated very well. Remember Joseph was in Egypt, he brought his family there, and Israel was treated very well at first. But of course as the leadership changed in Egypt, eventually Israel was oppressed and treated very harshly and cruelly. And so the same is true with lettuce. When we first begin to eat lettuce, it can taste sweet to us. Just like Israel was first treated sweetly when they went to Egypt under Joseph. But as the years went by, Israel's treatment of being sweet went to bitter, just like it is when we eat a piece of lettuce. At first it tastes sweet, but then that sweetness as we keep chewing turns to bitterness. So have a piece of the lettuce and try to relive the experience.
All together: And what is the meaning of the egg, the hagigah? And why is it brown?
Rabbi Schneider: The symbolism and meaning that I like most concerning the hagigah or hard-boiled egg is the fact that it represents the sacrifices that were offered during Passover when the temple was standing. Let me ask you this question. How many times does a chicken lay an egg? Anybody?
Pastor Josh: At least once a day.
Rabbi Schneider: Once a day! Everyday. And how many times do we sin?
Pastor Josh: Every day.
Rabbi Schneider: Every day. So how many times do we need a sacrifice?
All together: Every day.
Rabbi Schneider: Every day. And so the hagigah becomes the symbol of the sacrifices. But King Yeshua offered Himself once and for all. And because of that the book of Hebrews says, "No other sacrifices are forever needed". Thank you Father God, thank you King Jesus for be coming our all-sufficient sacrifice.
Pastor Leo: Amen.
All together: And what is the meaning of the zeroah, the shank of bone of the lamb?
Rabbi Schneider: Since 70 A.D. when the temple was destroyed, no Passover sacrifices have been offered. So since we can't offer a Passover lamb as a sacrifice, because we have no temple, we have no priesthood, and as a result no sacrifices can be offered, again going back all the way to 70 A.D., in lieu of that we have a symbol of it, we have the bone of the lamb that represents the Passover lambs that were offered while the temple was standing.
All together: But without sacrifices, how can we atone for our sins, for the law declares, "It is the blood that makes an atonement for the soul". Does this mean that atonement and redemption are no longer possible?
Rabbi Schneider: May it never be! The fact is that when Messiah Yeshua died on the cross, the veil that separated in the temple the Holy of Holies from the holy place was broken asunder. We even have the breaking of the veil recorded in the Talmud. Why was it torn asunder, this place that separated man from God's presence? Because God was showing us that now access has been made once and for all through the one sacrifice of Messiah Yeshua, as a result of this one eternal sacrifice, all the other sacrifices are no longer needed. They were simply types and shadows. Blessed art Thou, O Lord our God, who offers redemption and atonement for our sins.
All together: Amen.
Rabbi Schneider: Behold the bread of affliction, which our ancestors ate in Egypt Let all who are hungry come.
All together: But what is the meaning of this unleavened bread?
Men: Throughout the Bible, leaven is frequently employed as a symbol of sin.
Rabbi Schneider: We are released from the generations of the sin of our first forefather Adam, and as the leaven in his bread caused the dough to rise so that sin came into all humanity, and became puffed up, so too the leaven in bread causes the whole bread to become puffed up. And unleavened bread, which is the symbol of Messiah Jesus, is without leaven because Jesus had no pride and no sin in Him.
All together: Purge out therefore the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, as you are unleavened. For even Messiah, our Passover, is sacrificed for us.
Rabbi Schneider: Beloved, understanding the mysteries of Jesus revealed through the Messianic Passover Seder is very important. Jesus is the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world. You wanna make sure to tune in next week where I conclude by showing you the mystery of the afikomen in the Seder. Honey?
Cynthia Schneider: Lord, we just thank You for the mysteries of the gospel revealed in the Passover Seder. We look up unto You in the days ahead that we will receive the fullness of Your Word given through the Passover.