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Is Passover the first day of unleavened bread?
The below information is what I have come to understand with what I have studied. My hope is that this will be read in its entirety with an open mind and most importantly please read my closing statements in bold type as they make the main point.
Exod 12:6-8; “Now you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month. Then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it at twilight and they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses where they eat it. 'Then they shall eat the flesh on that night; roasted in fire, with unleavened bread and with bitter herbs they shall eat it.”
Now in Exod 12:15-16 it states; “Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread. On the first day you shall remove leaven from your houses. For whoever eats leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that person shall be cut off from Israel. On the first day there shall be a holy convocation, and on the seventh day there shall be a holy convocation for you. No manner of work shall be done on them; but that which everyone must eat-- that only may be prepared by you.”
Notice that they worked on the 14th day by roasting the flesh in fire however the command was that during the seven days of unleavened bread they were commanded NOT to do ANY type of work which would include roasting flesh. Please check out the below scriptures in Exod 12:18 that bear this out also.
Exod 12:18; “In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at evening, you shall eat unleavened bread, until the twenty-first day of the month at evening.”
If they started the keeping of the Passover at twilight (Dusk) then that would mean the 14th day was beginning because they started the day at twilight (Dusk) and after the Passover day on the 14th was complete they were commanded to start the first day of un-leavened bread.
This is proven out in Num 28:16-17 which separates the two events. It states…”On the fourteenth day of the first month is the Passover of the LORD. 'And on the fifteenth day of this month is the feast; unleavened bread shall be eaten for seven days.”
The eating of unleavened bread on the Passover had nothing to do with the seven days of un-leavened bread but was to point out that the Lamb (Jesus) would be unleavened, or pure.
Also notice in 2 Chr 35:16-17 when the feast was reestablished after it had been lost for a time. It states… “So all the service of the LORD was prepared the same day, to keep the Passover and to offer burnt offerings on the altar of the LORD, according to the command of King Josiah. And the children of Israel who were present kept the Passover at that time, and the Feast of Unleavened Bread for seven days.”
Also notice the same thing in Ezra 6:19-22. It states…”And the descendants of the captivity kept the Passover on the fourteenth day of the first month. For the priests and the Levites had purified themselves; all of them were ritually clean. And they slaughtered the Passover lambs for all the descendants of the captivity, for their brethren the priests, and for themselves. Then the children of Israel who had returned from the captivity ate together with all who had separated themselves from the filth of the nations of the land in order to seek the LORD God of Israel. And they kept the Feast of Unleavened Bread seven days with joy; for the LORD made them joyful, and turned the heart of the king of Assyria toward them, to strengthen their hands in the work of the house of God, the God of Israel.
Notice that the record here in these scriptures separates and makes a distinction between the Passover and the seven days of un-leavened bread. Also I would like for someone to show me scripture pointing to the very first day of the month of Nisan. I have never been able to find a single scripture that states “this is the first day of the first month”. Only that they are to count from the first day 14 days for the Passover. Remember during this time mankind had never seen the earth from space or even traveled a great distance to know about time zones so the instructions for the timing had to be from the point of Israel.
I do understand that some people state that it is a matter of obedience, however, Have you ever wondered why Jesus did not layout a detailed writing of what would be changed from the Old covenant to the New covenant? HWA had to write many letters and books to explain to his church in great detail how and when before his church could understand yet he is the only one that ever did this from the time of the inception of the New covenant. I have done a three year detailed research on the history of the bible and cannot find any valid writings before 200 years after the first Pentecost and the death of the apostle John.
If you have not read my study titled "The New Covenant" you might want to do so and please notice that the book of Hebrews was written only for the Hebrew people because they were born and raised with the Old Covenant. Also you will notice that the author stated if the first covenant had been faultless, then no place would have been sought for a second. Heb 8:7.
The New Testament record reveals that keeping the feast was a sign of things to come and Jesus fulfilled them. Also we find in the book of Hebrews that there is an annulling of the Old laws as it states…For on the one hand there is an annulling of the former commandment because of its weakness and unprofitableness," (Notice the term "there is an annulling? To annul is to make void or abolish; cancel; invalidate; to annul or cancel a marriage. Now continuing in vs.19 we see a better hope, and a better covenant.)
Notice in Heb 6:11 the function of the priesthood is made void.) "Therefore, if perfection were through the Levitical priesthood; for under it the people received the law, what further need was there that another priest should rise according to the order of Melchizedek, and not be called according to the order of Aaron?" The statement “not be called according to the order of Aaron.” Means the Old covenant. (The point being made here is that the Levitical priesthood was not the beginning of the priesthood and to abolish it is not the end of the priesthood because Melchizedek is the priest and Jesus is Melchizedek. The Jews failed to understand that God is the center of all He does. It seems that we humans always forget that what God establishes or what He might create He also can change or abolish.)
I would like to add the very important point that if the keeping of these feast could save any person than Jesus is dead in vain and this means our salvation does not depend on the old law of Moses but in the blood sacrifice of the Messiah. Did you realize by what is recorded in the Old Testament that Abraham, Isaac, nor Jacob never kept these feast? So how were they saved?
You can find my study on the book of Hebrews here...
Timothy M. Youngblood
The Master's Table