What is Passover about? That’s really the question that I want to answer in this post. I am aware that some of you may fully know what the Passover is. And the idea of the Passover is not a new one, nor do I want to present a brand new concept around what the Passover is. But in answering my initial question, that is, what is Passover all about? I am going to attempt to answer a couple of other questions. The first question I want to look at is, in the Passover, did Israel deserve to be saved? The second question is, why did God rescue Israel in the Passover?
You can read about the story of the Passover in the book of Exodus, starting in chapter 3 with the call of Moses and through the 10 plagues. However, I would argue that the theme that the Passover represents was not new with the event of the first Passover nor did it end with the first Passover. What are some of the themes of Passover? Some big themes that stand out are redemption, rescue, salvation, and God saving Israel from slavery.
This brings us to our first question: Did Israel deserve to be saved? The simple answer is no. Let me classify. In both Joshua 24:14 and Ezekiel 20:6-9 Israel is described as a people who served the gods of Egypt were rebellious, and set detestable things before their eyes.
I think it’s easy for us to think of Israel as a godly people in captivity. But they were essentially a pagan idolatrous people by the time that Moses hits the scene. Moses doesn’t even know who God is when they meet at the burning bush. Moses wants to know what to call God when he tells Israel about Him, most likely because the people of Israel would have lost connection with Him over the previous 400 years.
So we know Passover is about redemption and rescue and is not deserved in any way. I say that, not to single out or harp on the people of Israel. Lord knows you and me would have most likely been the same way had we lived then. The undeserving element, in my opinion, adds so much encouragement.
Now for our second question: why did God rescue Israel in the Passover? When God is speaking with Moses He says things like…He was watching over them and that He remembered the covenant with Abraham.
“The Lord passed before him and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness,”Exodus 34:6 ESV
This verse is how God describes himself. And His track record more than proves it. God delivered Israel for the same reason He delivers anyone, He is abounding in love and faithfulness. He makes promises and He keeps promises. God promised Abraham, back in Genesis 15:12-14, He would rescue his descendants. There was no stipulation tied to it. God’s faithfulness to His promises is why the Passover happened.
In addition to His faithfulness, another reason for the Passover is God’s desire to make His name known. In Speaking with Moses, God said that He will send plagues in order to make His name known. God also wanted to make Himself known to Israel. And through Israel, He would be made known to the world. And in Exodus 12, we see not only Israel going out of Egypt, but a mixed multitude of other peoples with them. God’s wonders humbled the most powerful kingdom in the ancient world at that time, rescued an entire nation of people from slavery, and convinced a multitude of non-Israelites to go with them.
Now let’s go back to our overarching question: what is the Passover? It’s salvation, initiated by God, towards undeserving people, out of His love and faithfulness, to make His name known. What does that sound like? The Gospel right? Look at these New Testament passages.
He saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace…2 Timothy 1:9a ESV
“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,”Romans 3:23-24 ESV
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,”Ephesians 2:8 ESV
This is our message. The one that God has been telling since the beginning. God sacrificed an animal to cover Adam and Eve after they sinned (Genesis 3). God rescued Noah and his family (Genesis 6-9). God saved Israel time and time again through the Judges from Othniel to Samuel (Judges and 1-2 Samuel). God brought Israel out of Egypt and out of Persia (Ezra and Nehemiah). God preserved Israel through Esther and Mordecai while they were still in Persia (Esther). He has been in the business of rescuing and redeeming undeserving people since the beginning. Passover is a major expression of that. And one that pointed to a future Passover in which, not just a lamb, but the Lamb would suffer and die.
“For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.”Romans 5:6-10 ESV
I don’t deserve Jesus. You don’t deserve Jesus. That’s the point. Thank you Lord for the Passover. Thank you Jesus for loving us and saving us. Help us grow in gratitude for all you’ve done.
“And when the hour came, he reclined at table, and the apostles with him. And he said to them, “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I tell you I will not eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves. For I tell you that from now on I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood.”Luke 22:14-20 ESV
5 thoughts on “God Pursues the Undeserving”
The phrasing ” Iit’s salvation, initiated by God, towards undeserving people, out of His love and faithfulness, to make His name known.” sounds a little bit weird, giving the impression God His Name would be the one you later quote in the verses from the New Testament, as if you want your readers to believe God’s Name is Jesus. Though God His Name is Jehovah, and the sent one from God, or the son of man is Jesus Christ, the son of God who put his own will aside to do the Will of his Heavenly Father, the Only One True God, the God of Israel.
It was that God of Abraham Who was willing to accept the ransom offering of His beloved son.
Thank you for your comment. The cool thing is Jesus said that before Abraham was, I AM. Jesus claimed to be God in the flesh. Several other passages throughout scripture make the same claim. Colossians chapter 1 and John chapter 1 are great examples. It’s the bedrock of the Christian faith. We believe that the fullness of God was pleased to dwell in Jesus. So yes, I do reference them interchangeably quite often due to their oneness described from Genesis to Revelation. Blessings.
Jesus did nowhere say “I am that I am” like God did say that He is The Being. People who say “I am” are not at all God. If you would answer me when I ask if you are the writer of ForCommonGround and you would reply with “I am” are you than claiming to be God like all those people would do who answer the phone with “I am”?!?
That being before Abraham is about that Jesus was alreadymentioned in the garden of Eden, long before Abraham was born. Also do not forget that you too, like me, are already notated in the Book of life and death before Abraham or Jesus were born.
The apostel John wanting to write his gospel in the manner that Moses wrote his genesis book, considers Jesus as the one spoken of by God (in the garden of Eden) and being the beginning of the New World.
You also say your idea of the Trinity is “Jthe bedrock of the Christian faith”, by which you seem to forget that neither Jesus or his disicples ever thought that Jesuwould have been God, nor have many real Christians ever believed such false teachings which were brought in by the false teachers and the Roman Catholic Church. Throughout history there have always been churches or denominations which kept to the Biblical Truth of the Only One True God, the Elohim Hashem Jehovah, Whom Himself told that there is no other god besides Him and that Jesus is His beloved son.
Nothing I said detracts from Yahweh (YHWH) or Adonai (LORD) being the One true God. I wonder, what do you do with passages like John chapter 1 that says Jesus is the Word and was with God and was God. Or in Colossians chapter 1 that says through Jesus all things were made through Him and for Him all things were made and He(being Jesus) holds all things together. Or when Jesus says He and His Father are One. Or when Jesus uses the same phrase to state who He is that Yahweh used to introduce Himself to Moses. That’s why people got so fired up and wanted to kill Him.
I think the problem may be that you place God in a box. And Jesus for that matter. God can choose to present Himself to us however He wants. Through a wind, a burning bush, a pillar of cloud or fire, a voice, or in a person aka Yeshua (in Whom God’s fullness was pleased to dwell).
None of these concepts are mine. They come straight from scripture. The Bible is a unified story that leads to Jesus. The Alpha and Omega. Who said that all of scripture points to Him. And before you care to insult me any more, perhaps you should spend some more time searching the scriptures and your heart. I don’t mind discourse, or even if someone disagrees. But it must be civil.