However, in order to get to Easter and fully understand all that the resurrection is, we must walk through today, Good Friday. What happened to Jesus as He journeyed toward the cross and then was nailed to it, in itself was not good at all. However, what Jesus did there for us, enables us to gain all the good that is in Jesus, and that goodness, has everything to do with what took place on that first Easter.
When the Hebrew people, those descendants of Abraham, had been exiled in Egypt and underwent all kinds of suffering, both brought on by themselves as well as the Egyptians, God intervened. He sent the prophet Moses to the court of Pharaoh to demand the release of the people. As our kids learned through quizzing this year, Pharaoh would not give in because the Hebrew slaves kept his “kingdom” financially strong. So God sent plague after plague, and I’m sure, each time, Moses figured, “This one will do the trick.” But, no. Pharaoh stuck to his pride and his heart grew harder and harder. And then came the Passover.
Here the firstborn of each household would die in the night, but not in the houses of the Jews, because they followed God's instruction to take the blood of a sacrificed lamb and spread it on their doorframes that the angel of death might "pass over" their homes and allow their children to live.
In the giving of the law to Moses, it was this event that led to the first holiday (Holy Day) on the Jewish calendar: Passover, a commemoration of God's saving grace. It was not until the coming of the Messiah, however, that the Passover sacrifices were paid for, for all time. Jesus became our Passover lamb, whose blood turns away the angel of death and purchases our eternal life. That, my friends, is worth celebrating!
I am really looking forward to our time together this weekend as we celebrate OUR Risen Lord!
Pastor Dave McGaffey