Tag Archives: Passover Seder

God’s name on Seder Night

On the most important ‘festival’ of the year we should use those free days to remember how the Most High, the Elohim HaShem Jehovah, was close to His people and liberated them from the slavery of man, but should remember also how He provides for salvation of the curse of death and gives the Grace of salvation for all those who want to come to Him as His children.

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To remember

Seder night drink four cups of wine + relate to elements on the Seder plate = central components of Seder night = represent four-letter Name of God, YHVH

Pharaoh cognizant of God acting through nature in the name of ELOKIM

God makes himself known to Children of Israel through the Name YHVH=> four expressions of redemption occur.

YHVH appeared to Abraham, to Isaac, + to Jacob with [the name] El Shaddai [Almighty God] > YHVH did not become known to them

established covenant with them

YHVH will take you out + will save you + will redeem you + will take you to Me as a people + will be a God to you + will bring you to the land I raised My hand to give to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, + I will give it to you as a heritage (Exodus 6: 2-8)

meaning Name of God = compassion, forgiveness, + mercy.

Connecting with the name of God, HaShem helps us

  1. put our trust in God
  2. forgive ourselves and others
  3. trust that HaShem will release us from bondage of our inner Pharoah, as indeed He does.

say on Seder night,

In every generation > person needs to feel > taken out of Egypt = taken out of slavery

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As we move through Seder night, we drink the four cups of wine and we relate to the elements on the Seder plate, we are not usually cognizant of the fact that both these central components of Seder night, actually represent the four-letter Name of God, YHVH

Pharaoh said, “Who is YHVH that I should listen to His voice? “

Actually, Pharaoh was cognizant of God acting through nature in the name of ELOKIM because that is how he acknowledged God to Joseph.   And even if we are talking about a different Pharaoh, one who did not know Joseph, nevertheless he would have heard of the story. But YHVH was unknown to Pharoah.

 It is when God makes himself known to the Children of Israel through the Name YHVH that the four expressions of redemption occur.

2. God spoke to Moses, and He said to him, “I…

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A great evening and special days to look forward in 2019

Everywhere Spring is in the land, you might see that people want to clean and get rid of so many things gathered in Winter.

In several countries we also find that people want to get rid of their governments, though many of them do not look forward to the government the Most High Elohim has planned. They should know that this by God ordained government shall be the most efficient government and shall come to last for ever.

The coming days we shall remember how that king for the earthly kingdom was presented to the world. He was honoured when he entered Jerusalem, but soon lots of people shouted to kill him.

After his glorious entrance in Jerusalem he one night went into an upper room to be with his closest friends and to break bread with them. That “Breaking of bread” (or Betzi’at halechem) was so special we may not leave it un-remembered. The Nazarene rebbe asked his followers to take it in remembrance in the same way as his heavenly Father asked all God loving people to remember what He did for the enslaved in Egypt.

Concerning this special day I not invite you to read “Soon it shall be Erev Pesach and Passover 2019″ but also hope you shall be able to find near you a group of believers remembering that special gathering of Jeshua, Jesus Christ, the Messiah. And in case there is no Memorial Meal near you, why not invite others at your home to have one there?

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Find also additional reading

  1. Who Would You Rather Listen To?
  2. A season for truth and peace
  3. 9 Adar and bickering or loving followers of the Torah preparing for Pesach
  4. First month of the year and predictions
  5. Making sure we express kedusha for 14-16 Nisan
  6. Holidays, holy days and traditions
  7. Objects around the birth and death of Jesus
  8. 8 Reasons Christian Holidays Should Not Be Observed
  9. Preparation for unity
  10. Preparation for Passover
  11. Anointing as a sign of Promotion
  12. Entrance of a king to question our position #2 Who do we want to see and to be
  13. Not dragged unwillingly to death
  14. A perfect life, obedient death, and glorious resurrection
  15. Lost senses or a clear focus on the one at the stake
  16. Seven Bible Feasts of JHWH
  17. Days of Nisan, Pesach, Pasach, Pascha and Easter
  18. At the Shabbat HaChodesh: readings about blood, liberation and purification
  19. Purification and perfection
  20. Preparing for the most important weekend of the year 2018
  21. Preparing for 14 Nisan
  22. Yom Hey, Eve of Passover and liberation of many people
  23. Able to celebrate the Passover in all of its prophetic fulfilment
  24. The Memorial Supper
  25. Inauguration of the New Covenant
  26. This day shall be unto you for a memorial and you shall keep it a feast to the Most High God
  27. Memorial Observance 1909
  28. Thinking about fear for the Loving God and an Invitation for 14 Nisan
  29. Wednesday 5 April – Sunday 9 April 30 CE 2017 Pesach or Passover versus Easter
  30. Shabbat Pesach service reading 1/2
  31. Most important weekend of the year 2016
  32. The Most special weekend of the year 2018
  33. The Most important weekend of the year 2018
  34. A Great Gift commemorated
  35. This day shall be unto you for a memorial and you shall keep it a feast to the Most High God
  36. After darkness a moment of life renewal
  37. Worthy partakers of the body of Christ
  38. Easter holiday, fun and rejoicing
  39. After the Sabbath after Passover, the resurrection of Jesus Christ

 

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Filed under Lifestyle, Religious affairs

Able to celebrate the Passover in all of its prophetic fulfilment

3300 years after the People of Israel were required to choose an unblemished lamb, kill it, and place its blood over the doorposts and lintels of their dwelling places we may face the time of prophetic fulfilment.

File:Lamb of God Santa Maria di Maggiore (22) (17051826358).jpgToday we have the opportunity to place the blood of the perfect, chosen Lamb of God, Jeshua, over our hearts and homes, so that by faith, we too will be spared from the Divine judgment due to fall on this world.  This too is a miracle of deliverance.

Exodus 12:13 OJB And the dahm (blood) shall be for you, an ot (sign) upon the batim (houses) where ye are; and when I see the dahm, oofasachti [pasachti] (then I will pass over, skip, spare) you [plural], and the negef (plague, blow, striking, i.e., death of firstborn) shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I strike fatally with a blow against Eretz Mitzrayim.

In Hebrew, the word for I will pass over is pasachti וּפָסַחְתִּי, which comes from the word pesach, which means to hop, to skip over, to spare, and to pass over.

The lamb was to be slaughtered between the evenings (sometimes translated twilight). The other lamb, slaughtered many centuries later was also hung on the tree from the 6th hour to the 9th hour, which is before evening fell.  It is the same time that the Passover lambs were being slain for the Passover Seder. For the lambs in Egypt no bone was to be broken and of the Lamb which was brought to bring ransom for the sins of all, also no bone was broken.

Exodus 12:46 OJB In bais echad shall it be eaten; thou shalt not carry forth any of the basar outside the bais; neither shall ye break a bone thereof [see Yochanan 19:36 OJBC].

John 19:31-36 OJB Therefore, those of Yehudah, vi-bahlt (since) it was Preparation Day [with Chag and Shabbos fast approaching], they did not want the geviyot to be left on HaEtz (Tree) [Ex 12:16; Dt 21:22-23; Josh 8:29; 10:26-27] during Shabbos, for it was Shabbat HaGadol [VAYIKRA 23:11], requested Pilate to have the legs broken and the geviyot taken away. (32) Therefore the chaiyalim (soldiers) came and broke the first man’s legs and then the other one hanging on HaEtz. (33) But having come to Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach, when they saw that he was already niftar (deceased), they did not break his legs. (34) But one of the chaiyalim pierced [ZECHARYAH 12:10] his side with a romakh (spear) and immediately out came dahm and mayim. (35) And the ed re’iyah (eyewitness) of this has given solemn edut (testimony). And his edut is ne’emanah (trustworthy). And that one has da’as that he speaks Emes that you might have emunah. (36) For these things happened that the Kitvei Hakodesh [19:24, 28,37] might be fulfilled, V’ETZEM LO TISHBERU VO (And not a bone of him shall be broken). [SHEMOT 12:46; BAMIDBAR 9:12; TEHILLIM 34:20-21]

It was the Preparation Day that Jeshua found his life coming to an end, but having come to Jesus, they saw they did not have to hasten the teacher his death because they saw that he was already death, and therefore the soldiers did not break his legs.

In the ancient writings we are told that we shall have to come together in the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month, between the evening times to remember the the passover to Jehovah.

Leviticus 23:5-6 OJB In the fourteenth day of the first month at twilight is Hashem’s Pesach. (6) And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the Chag HaMatzot unto Hashem; shivat yamim ye must eat matzot.

Matthew 27:62 tells us that Jeshua died on the day of preparation for the Passover, which is Nissan 14, just in time for the Passover.

Matthew 27:62-64 OJB Now on the next day [i.e., Motzoei Shabbos], which is the one after the Preparation, the Rashei Hakohanim and the Perushim gathered together with Pilate (63) and said, Sir, we remember that when he was still alive that mateh (deceiver) said, After shloshah yamim I am to stand up alive. (64) Therefore, give orders for the kever to be made secure until the Yom HaShlishi (the Third Day), lest his talmidim come and steal him away and say to the people, He has stood up alive from the mesim. And the last deception will be worse than the first.

Therefore tonight we gather to remember  the Elohim’s passover and tomorrow on the fifteenth day of the first month of our religious year we shall celebrate the feast of unleavened bread unto Jehovah: seven days we shall eat unleavened bread, but we shall be happy and share our happiness with those around us, because we do know that though Jeshua was among the dead, he is now risen and alive, pleading for us, at the right hand of his heavenly Father.

 

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Preceding

A special weekend for Jews, Messianics, Jeshuaists and Christians

9 Adar and bickering or loving followers of the Torah preparing for Pesach

Making sure we express kedusha for 14-16 Nisan

Days of Nisan, Pesach, Pasach, Pascha and Easter

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Additional reading

  1. First month of the year and predictions
  2. To believe in the liberation of slavery and to repent
  3. An unblemished and spotless lamb foreknown
  4. Entrance of a king to question our position #2 Who do we want to see and to be
  5. Purim or Ta’aniet Estêr
  6. Preparation for Passover
  7. Days of Nisan, Pesach, Pasach, Pascha and Easter
  8. Yom Hey, Eve of Passover and liberation of many people
  9. Wednesday 5 April – Sunday 9 April 30 CE Pesach or Passover versus Easter
  10. This day shall be unto you for a memorial and you shall keep it a feast to the Most High God
  11. Lost senses or a clear focus on the one at the stake
  12. Thinking about fear for the Loving God and an Invitation for 14 Nisan
  13. Worthy partakers of the body of Christ
  14. Easter holiday, fun and rejoicing
  15. Holidays, holy days and traditions
  16. Seven Bible Feasts of JHWH
  17. 8 Reasons Christian Holidays Should Not Be Observed
  18. High Holidays not only for Israel
  19. 14-15 Nisan and Easter
  20. 14 Nisan a day to remember #1 Inception
  21. 14 Nisan a day to remember #2 Time of Jesus
  22. 14 Nisan a day to remember #3 Before the Passover-feast
  23. 14 Nisan a day to remember #4 A Lamb slain
  24. 14 Nisan a day to remember #5 The Day to celebrate
  25. A Holy week in remembrance of the Blood of life
  26. The son of David and the first day of the feast of unleavened bread
  27. Shabbat Pesach service reading 1/2
  28. Ember and light the ransomed of Jehovah
  29. Vayikra after its opening word וַיִּקְרָא, which means and He called
  30. Trust in the blood of the Lamb God provides
  31. Redemption #4 The Passover Lamb
  32. Redemption #5 The perfect sacrifice
  33. Redemption #7 Christ alive in the faithful
  34. Ransom for all
  35. Objects around the birth and death of Jesus
  36. Preparing for the most important weekend of the year 2018
  37. Preparing for 14 Nisan
  38. Most important weekend of the year 2016
  39. The Most important weekend of the year 2018
  40. The Most special weekend of the year 2018
  41. On the first day for matzah
  42. Imprisonment and execution of Jesus Christ
  43. After the Sabbath after Passover, the resurrection of Jesus Christ 

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  20. The Lamb of God
  21. Christ – The Lamb of God
  22. Behold the Lamb of God
  23. Worthy is the Lamb of God

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Filed under History, Religious affairs

A special weekend for Jews, Messianics, Jeshuaists and Christians

Tonight at sunset, the eight-day celebration of Passover begins.

Jewish people will mark the beginning of this prophetic holiday, which foreshadows the salvation wrought for all mankind
by the Messiah (Jeshua), with a ceremonial meal called the Seder, in which the story of deliverance from slavery in Egypt is retold.
This year this special weekend falls together with the Easter-weekend of several Christians who remember on Good Friday, what we also remember tonight, that Jesus was taken as a prisoner and tortured, afterwards he was brought to the hill outside Jerusalem where he was nailed at the stake to find his death.

True Christians and Jeshuaists or non-trinitarian Messianics shall come together tonight like the 12 men celebrating the Passover Seder in Jerusalem nearly two thousand years ago. They were told by their rabbi and master, Jeshua (Jesus), that this would be their last Seder together.  He also explained its prophetic significance.

Though despite that this would be the last time of Jeshua being with his talmidim, breaking unleavened bread and sharing of the wine, Jeshua did not leave them without hope.
He emphasized the physical coming of the Kingdom of God to the earth and His return:

Luke 22:14-20 OJB And when the hour came, he reclined at tish and the Moshiach’s Shlichim were with him. (15) And Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach said to them, With great tshuka (deep and sincere desire, longing) I have desired to eat this Pesach with you before I suffer. (16) For I say to you, I may by no means eat it until it is fulfilled in the Malchut Hashem. (17) And having taken the Cup of Redemption, having made the bracha, Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach said, Take this, and share it among yourselves. (18) For I say to you, from now on by no means shall I drink from the p’ri hagefen until the Malchut Hashem comes. (19) And having taken the Afikoman and having made the hamotzi, Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach broke the matzah and gave it to them, saying, This is my BASAR (SHEMOT 12:8) being given for you: this do in zikaron (remembrance) of me. [Lv 5:7; 6:23; Ezek 43:21; Isa 53:8] (20) And Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach took the kos (cup) similarly after they ate, saying, This kos (cup) is HaBrit HaChadasha in my dahm, being shed for you. [Ex 24:8; Isa 42:6; Jer 31:31-34; Zech 9:11; 53:10-12]

This weekend is so special that when we do gather, we consider it as having boldness to enter into the holy place by the blood of Yeshua. Though we do know we should not fall in the trap of the Easter celebrations by also partaking in the heathen actions, like searching for chocolate Easter eggs. We should be aware how Jeshua by the way which he dedicated for us, a new and living way, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh, we should try to stay clean like he was clean and did not do his own will but the Will of God.
Therefore let us draw near with a true heart in fullness of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and having our body washed with pure water, holding fast the confession of our hope without wavering; for he who promised is faithful.

Tonight and the coming days let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good works, not forsaking our own assembling together, as the custom of some is, but exhorting one another; and so much the more, as you see the Day approaching. When we shall hear the stories of how the Elohim liberated His people from the slavery of Egypt and how He is prepared to guide all those who want to be His and want to find the Way to enter the Holy Land, having put their hope on the Kingdom of God, we shall know that God is prepared also to be with us and to let us be partakers of the Body of Christ.

Tonight we take it at heart how as the blood of the Passover lamb spared the Israelite firstborns from death in Egypt, the blood of Messiah Jeshua spares us from eternal death and separation from God.

Tonight we think about that Lamb of God that could redeem humankind from the curse and the punishment of disobedience, as well as give eternal life.

Exodus 12:5 OJB Your seh (lamb [see Yeshayah 53:7]) shall be tamim (without blemish), a zachar (male) within its first year; ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats;
2 Corinthians 5:21 OJB The one who in his person had no da’as of chattat (sin) [Ac 3:14; Yn 8:46; MJ 4:15; 7:26; 1K 2:22; 1Y 3:5], this one Hashem made a chattat sin offering [Ga 3:13; YESHAYAH 53:10; VAYIKRA 4:24 TARGUM HASHIVIM] on our behalf that we might become the Tzidkat Hashem [DANIEL 9:24] in Moshiach. [1C 1:30; Pp 3:9] [T.N. In this next chapter Rav Sha’ul warns against associations or worldly influences or fascinations that will contaminate the believer, who should not think he can have both the world’s evil pleasures and the House of G-d’s holy chelek.]
Hebrews 10:19-28 OJB Therefore, Achim b’Moshiach, having confidence for bevitachon (confidently) entering haSha’ar laHashem (gate to approach G-d’s presence, access of the tzaddikim TEHILLIM 118:20) into the Kodesh HaKodashim by HaDahm HaYehoshua, (20) Which he opened for us as a Derech Chadasha, a Derech Chayyah, through the parokhet, that is to say, the parokhet of the basar of Moshiach. [Ps 16:9-10; Dan 9:26; Isa 53:5-12] (21) And als (since) we have a Kohen Gadol over the Beis Hashem, (22) Let us approach and draw near to Hashem with a lev shalem, with full assurance and bitachon of Emunah, our levavot having been sprinkled clean (tehorim) [YAZZEH, “MOSHIACH WILL SPRINKLE,” YESHAYAH 52:15] from an evil matzpun (conscience) and our bodies plunged kluhr (pure) into a tevilah in a mikveh mayim [YECHEZKEL 36:25-26]. (23) Let us, without wavering, hold firmly to the Ani Ma’amin of Tikveteinu (our Hope), for Ne’eman is the One having given the havtachah (promise). (24) And let us consider how to meorer (stimulate, motivate, shtarken) one another to ahavah and mitzvos, (25) And let us not turn away and defect from our noiheg (habitually) conducted daily minyan, as some are doing; let us impart chizzuk (strengthening, encouragement) to one another, and by so much the more as you see the Yom [HaDin (Day of Judgment)] approaching. (26) For when we intentionally commit chet b’yad ramah [“wilful sin with a high hand of defiance” BAMIDBAR 15:30] after having received the full da’as of HaEmes, there remains no longer a korban for chattoteinu, (27) But only a terrible expectation of Din and Mishpat and of a blazing EISH TZARECHA TOKHLEM (“Fire that will consume the enemies of Hashem” YESHAYAH 26:11). (28) Anyone who was doiche (rejecting or setting aside) the Torah of Moshe Rabbeinu, upon the dvar of SHNI EDIM O AL PI SHLOSHA EDIM (“Testimony of two or three witnesses” DEVARIM 19:15), dies without rachamim.

File:Lamb of God (3277326268).jpg

Lamb of God – Edgerton Cemetery, Huddersfield

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Find also

in English:

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Preceding

9 Adar and bickering or loving followers of the Torah preparing for Pesach

Making sure we express kedusha for 14-16 Nisan

Days of Nisan, Pesach, Pasach, Pascha and Easter

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Additional reading

  1. Day of remembrance coming near
  2. Purim or Ta’aniet Estêr
  3. Around the feast of Unleavened Bread
  4. Celebrations pointing to events of ultimate meaning
  5. Most important day in Christian year
  6. Who Celebrates Easter as Religious Holiday
  7. Eostre, Easter, White god, chocolate eggs, Easter bunnies and metaphorical resurrection
  8. Peter Cottontail and a Bunny laying Eastereggs
  9. Wednesday 5 April – Sunday 9 April 30 CE Pesach or Passover versus Easter
  10. Celebrations pointing to events of ultimate meaning
  11. Actions to be a reflection of openness of heart
  12. Solution for Willing hearts filled with gifts
  13. Vayikra after its opening word וַיִּקְרָא, which means and He called
  14. 14-15 Nisan and Easter
  15. 14 Nisan a day to remember #1 Inception
  16. 14 Nisan a day to remember #2 Time of Jesus
  17. 14 Nisan a day to remember #3 Before the Passover-feast
  18. 14 Nisan a day to remember #4 A Lamb slain
  19. Jesus memorial
  20. Easter holiday, fun and rejoicing
  21. Observance of a day to Remember
  22. A new exodus and offering of a Lamb
  23. Worthy partakers of the body of Christ
  24. High Holidays not only for Israel
  25. Seven days of Passover
  26. Risen With Him
  27. Paul’s warning about false stories and his call to quit touching the unclean thing
  28. Pesach and a lot of brokenness in the world
  29. Preparing for the most important weekend of the year 2018
  30. Preparing for 14 Nisan
  31. Most important weekend of the year 2016
  32. The Most important weekend of the year 2018
  33. After the Sabbath after Passover, the resurrection of Jesus Christ

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  28. The Symbol of Blood in Christianity & Upcoming Easter Special

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Stuck in Mitzrayim looking at an exodus out of slavery

Today’s guest-speaker looking at Psalm 37 knows that there are times in our lives when we are called to speak up and let our voices be heard, but also times to be silent.

The psalms of David may sound great in our ears and get us carried away in service showing our love for God with exuberance. There may be deep darkness in our world, but we lightening candles hear that music that has the power to awaken the light.

“I will praise Thee, O Lord, among the people; I will sing unto Thee among the nations.” (Psalms 57:9 KJ21)

Today’s rabbi writes

Music has the power to bring people together, singing in harmony, but the music of much of the Middle East these days is not an inviting melody.

Thomas Fuller

17th century British scholar, preacher Thomas Fuller

An old proverb of uncertain origin goes, it’s always darkest before the dawn. A version of this first appeared in print in 1640 in a travelogue by the English theologian and historian Thomas Fuller entitled, A Pisgah-Sight Of Palestine And The Confines Thereof.

How sad that he wrote this when traveling through Israel; and that more than 370 years later, the dark clouds still loom over much of the region. {Psalm 57}

Therefore in these darker days of the time coming closer to the end times, we should shed the light and show others which great event and which hope we are remembering the coming days.

Now we have come to a time to thank God and to sing for Him. A time to show our thankfulness that he liberated His chosen people and was willing to provide a marvellous future, a Kingdom to come, with a Holy Land where there shall be no slavery any more to whatsoever and where there shall be peace.

Today’s guest-speaker knows

A Seder table setting

A Seder table setting (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

that there are Jews who do not have a Seder or celebrate Passover by putting away the bread and cereal and other leavened grain products for eight days in favor of matza. No matter what you do for Passover, I encourage you to take the holiday experience, especially the Seder, seriously. {Divre Harav/Words from the Rabbi – April, 2015}

It is a period we may not let pass unnoticed. The Divine Creator demanded it to be a special time until the eternity.

The critical element of the Passover Experience is not the elaborate food eaten for dinner at the Seder, but rather the thought that goes into preparing food without leavening and the symbolism behind it. One common take on hametz, leavening, is that it symbolizes the ego. The opposite of hametz, matza, symbolizes humility. Passover can be seen as an exercise in reducing the ego and developing a humble attitude towards caring for others.

The critical element of the Seder is not the brisket or the matza ball soup, but rather the retelling of the story of the Exodus, with the focus on how that story moves us to see and address oppression in the world around us. {Divre Harav/Words from the Rabbi – April, 2015}

Now has the time come to stand still by those old stories of men and women who had to work hard and did not see any way out of slavery. Time to wonder how are relation with God is and if there are no sins hindering or to impede a good relationship. Today there are still many forms of slavery going on. But we should know that the Elohim promised a Messiah and that always all promises of god become a reality.

We should trust the Most High and study the Torah, letting us inspire and build up our personality.

Perhaps at the proper candle-lighting time, before candle-lighting doing the 4 questions and 4 children and singing songs, you too may tell the story of Pesah in a very abbreviated way.

In keeping with the mishnah’s instructions to tell the story from degradation to redemption, we basically tell the story by reading the key passages of the Hagaddah from Deuteronomy 26:5-8, reciting the plagues, the teaching of Rabban Gamliel and the beginning of Hallel. {Divre Harav/Words from the Rabbi – April, 2015}

It is a moment to be humble and to share the many goods we have with others. Time to put ourselves aside, to think about God’s people and to give praise to the Most High.

When we do feel lonely and blocked in this material world, where we see so many slave to material goods and to money delivering jobs, we can think of the capital Mitzrayim.

The Hebrew word for Egypt is Mitzrayim, a word that connotes narrow places  (probably taking its name from the fact that the fertile part of Egypt is a narrow strip of land on either side of the Nile).  In a metaphorical sense, when we are stuck in Mitzrayim, we are living our lives in a constricted place. We are stuck inside a narrow box.  Pesah is the time to look at the narrow box in which we are living, look at those behaviors which keep us stuck in a rut, and free ourselves. {Stuck in a Rut? Pesah Tells You to Get Unstuck!}

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Preceding articles

Seven lights or basic emotions

How to Live Beyond the Ordinary

Psalm 37 Humble inheriting the earth

Thoughts on Passover

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This Passover maybe we can liberate ourselves

This Passover maybe we can liberate ourselves
from holding onto what happened
We don’t have to subscribe
To Be Here Now but we can try
letting go of all that happened
that gets in the way
of how pink Egypt is how much
we loved one another before
life intervened. This Passover
We will pass over injustice
not because it’s ok
but because we want to try a holiday experiment
maybe just this year, we want
to liberate ourselves
by saying these words: Forgive Forgive Forgive

Esther Cohen
Esther Cohen is a poet, cultural activist, novelist and book doctor. She lives in New York.

English: Passover plate with symbolic foods: m...

Passover plate with symbolic foods: maror, egg, haroset, karpas, zro’ah, dish of salt water (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Thoughts on Passover

The traditional Passover Seder Haggadah is not just for Jews—it will move spiritual progressives both secular and religious.

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Thoughts on Passover by Shari Motro

How does one leave home in peace?

Read metaphorically, the Exodus story—which Jews will retell during the upcoming Passover holiday—offers some clues to answering this most universal of questions.

Moses is born a Hebrew slave, but he is raised in Pharaoh’s palace. The setup is an exaggerated version of something familiar to many—to anyone who has wondered whether some cosmic accident landed her with the wrong family; anyone who has felt uncomfortable about the privileges she accrued by virtue of her birth; anyone who at some point experienced her parents as oppressive or narrow. Egypt, in Hebrew, means “narrow place.”

Moses’ initial reaction is the classic teenage rebellion—it’s rash, it’s risky, and it gets him into deep trouble. After witnessing an Egyptian beating a Hebrew slave, Moses kills the Egyptian, buries him in the sand, and runs. He tries to disappear, to start over. In Midian, Moses marries a local and has a son who he names Gershom, Stranger (“For I was a stranger in a strange land,” he says).

But running away doesn’t work. At some point, those of us who leave unfinished business behind are called to return. For Moses, the call starts as a fire, a fire that burns but doesn’t consume. The burning bush is a fire that can be neither put out nor ignored.

Miniature ofrom Folio 8r of the Syriac Bible o...

Miniature ofrom Folio 8r of the Syriac Bible of Paris shows Moses before Pharaoh. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Moses goes home to face the conflict he ran from. His task is to negotiate, to mediate between the slaves and Pharaoh, both of whom symbolize aspects of every human soul. He will eventually leave again, but in a different way. Leaving home in peace requires acknowledging the naysaying voice within. Moses can’t leave Egypt for good until his ability to dream his own future overwhelms his fear, until he stands before Pharaoh and speaks his truth.

Yes, I killed the Egyptian.

Yes, I’ve turned my back on you. Look, I’m not you. I’m a different person.

Yes, I want to leave.

Will you let me go?

Pharaoh says no, as parents do. Sometimes parents say no even when they know that eventually they will relent, that everybody will be better off when they do. Nevertheless, some inexplicable force compels them to dig in their heels, to wield their power while they still have it.

Of course, Pharaoh is an extreme example. This is the point of archetypal myths: they use extremes to illustrate lessons that apply to us all. Pharaoh symbolizes attachment—the eminently human tendency to resist change. The plagues are the suffering that results from attachment. Each plague is a message from Pharaoh’s higher self, like a body that keeps getting sick until you listen to it.

For Moses, the message of the plagues may be this: Your blossoming into your most radiant self is not the true cause of suffering—Pharaoh’s suffering, your own suffering, anybody’s. The cause of suffering is resistance.

After the tenth and most devastating plague—the death of the firstborn—Pharaoh finally relents, and the Israelites leave “in haste.” They leave so quickly they can’t wait for their bread to rise; this is why we eat unleavened bread on Passover. What’s the message here?

When the force holding you back finally relents—go. GO. Don’t be scared; don’t feel guilty; don’t hang around saying long goodbyes. It’s time.

And if Pharaoh follows at your heels and drowns in the pursuit, don’t rejoice. According to one interpretation, this is what God said to the angels who sang as the Egyptian chariots were swallowed by the sea:

“Don’t rejoice, for they are my creatures too.”

And yet, the texts are also filled with the opposite, with joy.

Anyone who has succeeded in breaking free knows this tension well. Our glee is tinged with something else, with the sinking recognition that our naysayers’ grief is our grief. And… surviving requires not allowing ourselves to drown in their tears. Surviving is rejoicing despite their pain.

Somehow, on the other side of it all, there is a place where all is forgiven, where the narrowness of our birth canal—every trauma, every grief—becomes a source of love and gratitude, where zero-sum gives way to abundance, where Pharaoh and Moses are one.

I’ve seen only glimpses of this place. For me, this is the Promised Land.

– by Shari Motro

Shari Motro is a professor of law at the University of Richmond.

From the Sikkum Special Seder Messages for Passover

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Preceding posts:

Commemorating the escape from slavery

The Evolution Of Passover–Past To Present

Passover and Liberation Theology

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Additional reading:

  1. Deliverance and establishement of a theocracy
  2. Moving around looking for a homeland
  3. 14 Nisan a day to remember #5 The Day to celebrate
  4. The Song of The Lamb #7 Revelation 15
  5. Materialism, would be life, and aspirations
  6. Emotional pain and emotional deadness
  7. Meaning of life 
  8. Suffering
  9. Offer in our suffering
  10. God helper and deliverer
  11. God’s instruction about joy and suffering
  12. God’s promises to us in our suffering
  13. Suffering – through the apparent silence of God
  14. Suffering continues
  15. Suffering leading to joy
  16. Surprised by time in joys & sufferings
  17. 1 -15 Nisan
  18. Day of remembrance coming near
  19. Another way looking at a language #4 Ancient times
  20. Self inflicted misery #5 A prophet without a hedge around him
  21. The Advent of the saviour to Roman oppression
  22. Seven days of Passover
  23. On the first day for matzah
  24. A new exodus and offering of a Lamb
  25. Children ate the OT passover so why not NT bread and wine?
  26. High Holidays not only for Israel
  27. Around the feast of Unleavened Bread
  28. Festival of Freedom and persecutions
  29. 14-15 Nisan and Easter

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  • The Ancient Egyptians Worshiped Sheep (acquiescere9.wordpress.com) > The Ancient Egyptians Worshiped SheepUltimately, the Torah tells us, God commanded the Israelites to take a lamb or a kid for each household. They were to hold it for four days, from the tenth until the fourteenth of the first month, and slaughter it on the fourteenth. This was done in Egypt, despite the Egyptians’ religious beliefs. To this day Jews commemorate this event, calling the Sabbath preceding Passover Shabbat Hagadol
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    Torah Parshat Va’eira Exodus 6:2-9:3
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    Parshah Yitro Exodus 18:1-20:23
  • This Passover 2012, Remember (Again!) – It’s Not Your Religion That Matters, But Your Humanity (nobodysview.wordpress.com)
    A drop of wine is spilled with each recitation in memory of those who suffered in Egypt…not the Jews, but the Egyptians.I guess it’s a solemn reminder that when blood of any kind is spilled, we all lose a little something.  Then, it is important to remember that when there are those in bondage around the world, we ourselves (no matter our religion) are in some way in bondage.
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    It’s 5773, but the Message of Passover 2013 Is Still as Strong as Ever
    There were wanderings, new beginnings, divisions, and some heartache, but in the end, the destination was reached.
  • Preparing for Passover: Six Ways to Prepare (coffeeshoprabbi.com)
    Traditionally, Jews spend the month after Purim preparing for Passover. A lot of the holiday is in the preparation: the seder and the week that follows are the fruit of what we’ve put in the month before. I thought it might be helpful to look at the various ways we prepare for Passover.  If this is your first year observing Passover, don’t try to do everything at once. Choose one or two, and get all that you can out of them.
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    Passover is the festival of telling the story about “deliverance from Egypt.” If you are truly to experience deliverance, it helps to notice from what you need deliverance. Spend some time, between now and Passover, thinking about your own personal Egypt(s). The name for Egypt in Hebrew is “Mitzrayim,” which also means “a narrow place, a tight spot.” Questions to ask myself: Where in my life am I stuck? To what am I a slave? In what parts of my life am I Pharaoh? Do I depend on the slavery of others? What would freedom look like, in any of these cases? What would freedom cost? What is freedom worth?
  • Who Would You Rather Listen To? (spinningrabbi.com)
    One of those valuable lessons of this remembering, is this – G-d freed the Jews so that they were no longer physical slaves, yet they were still slaves.  Now they were their own Pharaoh and the slavery was of the self-imposed spiritual and emotional variety.  Once physically free, it was up to them to free themselves spiritually and emotionally.This lesson applies to all people who are blessed to live in freedom today.  This means that the only one who can free you now, is you.  It’s up to you to free yourself from your personal Egypt.
  • Christian Bale as Moses in ‘Exodus’: First Look (PHOTO) (news.moviefone.com)
    Empire has our first look at Ridley Scott’s “Exodus,” and judging by the impressive construction going on behind Christian Bale‘s Moses, this Biblical tale should be epic indeed.The film follows the story of Moses, abandoned as a baby and adopted by Egyptian royalty, only to hear the voice of God as he grows older and ultimately lead the Israelite slaves into the promised land. In this image, Moses witnesses the suffering of his people at the hands of the Pharaoh.
  • Pharaoh’s Overthrow (brakeman1.com)
    There were six hundred thousand men, besides women and children.  God caused a pillar of cloud to go before them in the daytime, to show them the way they were to take, and at night He led them by a pillar of fire.After the children of Israel had left Egypt, Pharaoh, though his kingdom had been nearly destroyed for his disobedience to God, was angry with himself for having let them go.  So he gathered together a great army, and pursued them to where they were encamped, in the wilderness by the Red Sea.
  • The Ancient Egyptians Worshiped Sheep (menashedovid1.wordpress.com)> The Ancient Egyptians Worshiped Sheep
    the Torah tells us, God commanded the Israelites to take a lamb or a kid for each household. They were to hold it for four days, from the tenth until the fourteenth of the first month, and slaughter it on the fourteenth. This was done in Egypt, despite the Egyptians’ religious beliefs. To this day Jews commemorate this event, calling the Sabbath preceding Passover Shabbat Hagadol…
  • Passover Primer (boiseweekly.com)
    If you’ve walked through a Treasure Valley Albertson’s recently, you’ve probably noticed a table piled high with unfamiliar items–boxes of Streit’s Potato Pancakes, giant packages of Yehuda Passover Matzos, bottles of Kedem Sparkling Concord Grape Juice and murky jars of Mrs. Adler’s Gefilte Fish filled with bobbing, grayish lumps.
  • Now Faith Is (faithrises.com)
    Through faith he kept the passover, and the sprinkling of blood, lest He that destroyed the firstborn should touch them.
  • Max, Hannah and some frogs: Kids’ books bring new friends (jta.org)
    Frolicking frogs and magical matzah balls are featured in this season’s crop of new Passover books for children that are sure to engage, inform, entertain and inspire.David Adler, author of the hugely popular early reader “Cam Jansen” series, offers “The Story of Passover.” Adler is highly acclaimed for his straightforward narrative style in non-fiction books, including dozens on Jewish holidays.David A. Adler in "The Story of Passover" provides little-known answers to some intriguing questions. (Courtesy Holiday House)He says he likes to appeal to readers of any Jewish background, whether from traditional, observant Jewish families or those who are interested in learning about Passover.

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