Friday, 6 April 2018
I get a lot of questions about Passover (Pesach). There are four questions asked at every Seder.
The first question (which is not one of the four) is, "Why is this night different from all other nights?" The first real question is that on all other nights we eat any kind of bread we want, why on this night do we eat unleavened bread only? Read this ...
Leviticus 23:5-6 "During the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month in the evening, is Adonai's Passover. On the fifteenth day of the same month is the Feast of Matzot to Adonai. For seven days you are to eat matzah."
The first major celebration on the calendar is called the "Feast of Matzoh". Have you eaten Matzoh (I usually spell it "matzah")? This is a feast? I told our children's Seder last week I was hoping for the "Feast of Prime Rib". But no, we have the feast of unleavened crackers.
This is the eaternal (intentional pun/misspelling) prize for those who were delivered from slavery into freedom and emerged victorious on the far side of the Red Sea? Well, yes it is. The Scripture tells us in many places God wants to humble us. "Humble" usually refers to fasting, but on this holiday, God tells us what to eat. He says to eat only unleavened bread and then eat it with bitter herb (usually horseradish).
For those of you who actually like spicy foods, you must go beyond horseradish to comply with Godrs command. Perhaps some ghost peppers or wasabi for you. The Talmud teaches that we must eat enough bitter herb to make us cry. Within our flavor of Messianic Judaism we see much of the Talmud as optional (just like Conservative and Reform Judaism do). So pray and follow the leading of the Holy Spirit in your observance.
All of the Biblical holidays are called "The Feasts of the Lord" in Scripture. Obedience to God is never optional. The reason God has commanded us (they're not suggestions) is that He might pour out a blessing. Yes, God wants us to receive His blessing which flows out of our obedience to Him. God wants to bless His people who hear and obey His voice today.
Follow God and receive a blessing. It's not hard. See Matthew 11 the last verse. Blessings on this Chag HaMatzot HaZeh.
Rabbi Michael Weiner,