Passover and the Crucifixion - ©March 28, 2010 Asher Intrater
Over 3,000 years ago God first created a people for Himself at the exodus from Egypt. The number of people who crossed the Red Sea was over 3 million, and included Jews and Egyptians, believers and unbelievers. Until that time, God had a family and a group of tribes, but not a full people group.
What gave them the right to be delivered was the sacrifice of the Passover lamb. They actually passed through the blood on the lintel and door posts as they exited (Exodus 12:22-23). When they began their travels in the wilderness, they were told to do sacrifices over and over again. Their whole existence centered around the idea of blood sacrifice, although they were not given the full meaning as to why.
For us as Messianic believers, the importance of the blood sacrifice is central to our existence to the same degree that it was for our people delivered from Egypt. The difference is that we have the meaning of the sacrifice: not blind obedience to slaughter animal sacrifices, but the fact that God so loves us that He would sacrifice His son, the Messiah, for us. The truth of God's sacrificial love is what sets us free forever (John 8:32).
It is not a coincidence that Yeshua (Jesus) was crucified during Passover. The Passover was pre-planned and pre-determined by God with the sacrifice of Messiah in mind. The Passover set the stage for the great act of Messiah's death and resurrection. Yeshua came into the world for just that purpose (John 12:27). The Passover and the Crucifixion are the same pre-destined event.
The blood on the doorposts and lintel formed the sign of a cross. The door is a cross, and the cross is a door. We pass through Yeshua's crucifixion the same way our forefathers passed through the door with the blood. Through the cross of Messiah, God again created a people for Himself, just as He did at the exodus. We go out into freedom from sin and satan, from death and destruction.
Please pray for the many Messianic Jews in Israel who will be with their families during the Passover seder. May our people see not only the tradition of Matsoh and bitter herbs, but the truth of Messiah and His suffering! Please pray for the joint Messianic Jewish/Arab Christian celebration of the resurrection, this Saturday, at the Garden Tomb in Jerusalem.
Congressional Support for Israel
This week in Washington, 327 Congressmen (3/4's of the entire House) signed a letter expressing their support of Israel. Here is a major part of the letter:
The United States and Israel are close allies whose people share a deep and abiding friendship based on a shared commitment to core values including democracy, human rights and freedom of the press and religion. Our two countries are partners in the fight against terrorism and share an important strategic relationship.
A strong Israel is an asset to the national security of the United States and brings stability to the Middle East. We are concerned that the highly publicized tensions in the relationship will not advance the interests the U.S. and Israel share.
It is the very strength of this relationship that has, in fact, made Arab-Israeli peace agreements possible, both because it convinced those who sought Israel's destruction to abandon any such hope and because it gave successive Israeli governments the confidence to take calculated risks for peace.
In its declaration of independence 62 years ago, Israel declared: "We extend our hand to all neighboring states and their peoples in an offer of peace and good neighborliness, and appeal to them to establish bonds of cooperation and mutual help with the sovereign Jewish people settled in its own land."
In the decades since, despite constantly having to defend itself from attack, Israel has repeatedly made good on that pledge by offering to undertake painful risks to reach peace with its neighbors.
As the Vice-President said during his recent visit to Israel: "Progress occurs in the Middle East when everyone knows there is simply no space between the U.S. and Israel when it comes to security, none. No space."
We recognize that, despite the extraordinary closeness between our country and Israel, there will be differences over issues both large and small. Our view is that such differences are best resolved quietly, in trust and confidence, as befits longstanding strategic allies.
We believe, as President Obama said, that "Israel's security is paramount" in our Middle East policy and that "it is in U.S. national security interests to assure that Israel's security as an independent Jewish state is maintained."
Messiah in Tel Aviv
In the last few weeks there have been a series of full-page advertisements in Israeli newspapers by a self-proclaimed "Mashiach" in Tel Aviv. The writer not only refers to himself as Messiah, but speaks on behalf of God in the first person. He claims that the Netanyahu government will be the last; and that the next government will be his – that is, the government of the Messiah.
He claims that the war of Gog and Magog is imminent and that all the nations are already organizing for a massive attack against Israel. He quotes many scriptures, particularly of the Hebrew prophets. He also claims that the only way to escape destruction is to obey all the rabbinic tradition and to believe that he is the Messiah.
For false messiahs and false prophets will arise and do great signs and wonders in order to deceive, if possible, even the elect.
While this man has no apparent following, his prophecies of wrath appear at a time when we do see many nations uniting to condemn Israel, and even tensions between the Obama administration and Israel. In the years to come there will be a growing phenomenon of self-proclaimed messiahs appearing in Israel. As we see end times' prophecies being fulfilled, the expectation of a coming messiah will grow to a fervor.