Letters from Neil | April 8th, 2020

May 31, 2020  |  Redemption AZ

April 8, 2020

Good morning Salties and friends,

I pray this email finds you well and rejoicing in another day the Lord has made. I miss you all and our weekly gatherings very much. Tonight Jews will celebrate the first Seder (a Hebrew word meaning order) of Passover in a very different way then they’re used to but celebrate they will. Since Passover is celebrated in homes rather than a synagogue most families will be able to experience a seder although in smaller groups than usual. 

Passover is the oldest continually celebrated holiday ordained by God on the face of the earth. It has a 3000-year history of bringing people closer together and closer to God. Each celebration is a memorial to the original Passover when the death angel of the Lord passed over those houses protected by the blood of a sacrificial lamb.

The basic elements and order of the Seder meal have remained unchanged for centuries. The Seder is filled with rituals and symbolism and follows a prescribed order laid out in a Haggadah. Haggadah is a Hebrew word meaning “the telling.” The Passover Seder has always been about preserving, teaching and reenacting tradition. As a liturgical memorial of the Exodus, the Seder would have been central to Jesus’ religious life. In fact, in Luke 22:15 Jesus said to His disciples “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer”. It is the occasion on which Jesus established a new covenant with His people which we remember each time we celebrate communion when we give thanks for our redemption into the Kingdom of God and not just freedom from slavery in Egypt.

At the first Seder dinner God’s people celebrated their return to the Promised Land but communion celebrates our inclusion into the Kingdom of God. “Your kingdom come” is not a wish but a fact to celebrate because the perfect Lamb of God shed His blood for us. Despite the discomfort we’re all facing, let’s prepare our hearts to celebrate this glorious truth as we gather (separately) for Good Friday and Easter.

Love in Christ,