March 29, 2018
Pass Over Us
March 29, 2018
This weekend’s reading: John 20:19-23
I was in my late 20s when I finally began to connect the Biblical “dots” and see the Bible as God’s complete story from beginning to end. Through countless studies, sermons, podcasts, and more, I have thirstily sought out the connections made between Old Testament and New Testament, between the old covenant and law, and the many ways in which Jesus fulfilled the promises and the prophecies. The way that God has woven a complete perfect story is so beautiful to me.
The familiar story of the Israelites exodus from Egypt is full of dramatic twists and turns, almost like a good suspense novel. When I get to the end of the plagues, the tenth and final one creates the most suspense in my heart. Is God actually going to send death among these people? Will the blood on the doorposts actually be enough to protect them? This story can bring up a lot of theological questions. But today, in the midst of Holy Week, the significance of the first Passover is made complete by Jesus’s last moments on earth.
When Jesus was celebrating the festival of the Passover with his disciples, his final instructions become the liturgy that we use today for communion. While celebrating God’s covenant with and deliverance of his people, Jesus sets the stage for all of that to be fulfilled. We know what happens next in the story… we know the brutality that is about to take place. Just as God passed over and protected the Israelites that night in Egypt, Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross protects us from sin and death. He has died so that we may live.
QUESTIONS FOR THE FIELD
- What connections do you see between the passage and Exodus and the passage in John? What does that tell you about God? What does that tell you about yourself?
- If you are able, partake in communion either at BUMC’s Maundy Thursday service or elsewhere. Take in the weight and the significance of the words spoken.
- Research what takes place during a Passover Seder, or find a community Seder that you can attend. Notice the language of slavery, freedom, and celebration.
“God of the covenant, as we remember what the Passover feast symbolizes, we come to the table of the Lord in whom we have salvation, life, and resurrection. Renew the power of this mystery in our service to one another and to you, so that with Christ we may pass from this life to the glory of your kingdom. Amen.” (from The Revised Common Lectionary Prayers).