It's that time of the year again. I know some of you are youth leaders, and want to celebrate Easter with our youth and young adults in a meaningful way. We want to move beyond the Easter egg hunt and fondue nights.So what can we do? What shall we teach? How can we do something different? Something that will engage our group and help them to have a deeper understanding of what God has done for them through Jesus' work on the cross.
What about the Passover?
My passover experience
The Passover for me has been part of my upbringing. My dad came from a Jewish family and so every year we would go to my grandparents house and celebrate the Jewish Passover. The Jewish Passover is rich in Old Testament promises and is a celebration of the time God rescued his people from slavery in Egypt. On the night of the first Passover the Jewish people had to kill a lamb without blemish and put the blood over the door frames of their houses. When the angel of death came he would pass over those houses and the first born would live and be saved. Pharoah's first born son died that night and so he let God's people go (Exodus 12:12.) Every year the Jewish people were to celebrate this by remembering what God had done for them on that night and also look forward to the day that they would be forever rescued (Exodus 12:14).
A Christian Passover Celebration
As my dad is now a Christian, he has often been asked to give Passover at churches and bible studies. The style of passover he does has some of the traditions of a Jewish Passover but also looks at the great rescue of God's people through Jesus Christ. The Christian Passover doesn't leave you waiting and hoping for the eternal rescue because as Christians we know that this has already been accomplished! We know that Jesus is God's promised rescuer. He is the ultimate Passover lamb (1 Corinthians 5:7-8). He allowed himself to be hung on the cross so that we could be spared from death if we believe and trust in him.
While Practicing the traditional Jewish Passover no longer makes sense to Christians, celebrating the Passover with Jesus brings a great depth. To me it has been the easiest way for people to understand God's redemptive plan through the cross. If you want an interactive, hands-on way for people to be engaged, learn and be encouraged when celebrating the true meaning of Easter then the Christian Passover is a great way to do this.