Chapter 12 shows us the final plague that God sent because of Pharaoh’s refusal to let His people go. Pharaoh had witnessed God do amazing things, but still, his heart was hard and he refused to give in. In this final event, God would show His complete sovereignty over life, death, and the idols of the Egyptians. But this story also gives us a picture of God’s mercy and grace as He provided a way for the Israelites to be spared.
This event was given the name Passover because when God saw the blood on the door frames of the houses of the Israelites, He would literally “pass over” them. A lamb was to be killed and its blood used to mark the door frames. The lamb was then to be eaten together by families, with smaller families joining in with larger ones if necessary. The blood of the Passover Lamb offered the protection that the family would need to escape God’s judgment and would be done every year for generations to come in remembrance of God’s deliverance from Egypt.
If you remember back to the story of Joseph, at the end, he brought his family (his father Jacob and his siblings) to live with him in Egypt. Jacob, who was renamed Israel by God, entered Egypt as a family, but the Israelites (Jacob’s descendants) would leave Egypt as a nation.
This Passover foretold the ultimate Passover when Jesus Christ Himself would become the final Passover Lamb, sacrificed to provide a way of freedom and pardon for us through the shedding of His blood. The events of Exodus provide of picture of what was to come.
I love that we are reading this story as we look towards Easter. Spend some time thinking about this first Passover and its significance for the Israelites. Then, flip over to John 12:12 - 21:25 and read the events of Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem during the Passover festival, through his crucifixion and resurrection. These events are inextricably connected. Jesus was the final Passover Lamb. I’m praying that God would open our eyes, ears, and hearts to the awesomeness of His story as we connect the Old and New Testaments and see the lengths that He went to rescue us. Just as the Israelites needed rescuing from the slavery and bondage of Egypt, we need rescuing from the slavery and bondage that sin holds us in. It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.
New Hope Church