Good Friday 2018

Anne Greve's Passover Excerpt

Passover is a Feast given to increase our faith and prepare us to enter into the fullness of Gods blessing! Passover was commanded by God for the Jews in the Old Testament to teach them the importance of redemption by the blood. It was also observed by Christians in the New Testament to remember and understand God's redeeming work. God's word tells us it's to be a permanent mandate…and celebration for all time. 

Passover isn't just an Old Testament Feast... It's all through the New Testament. The first Lord's Supper was a Passover meal that Jesus and the apostles celebrated together. In a traditional passover meal, Jews have 4 cups or sips of wine, each representing a promise found in Exodus 6: I will bring you out...I will deliver you...I will redeem you and I will take you to be my people. The third cup of wine is the cup of redemption. This is where Jesus announced the New covenant for the forgiveness of sins. He did not drink the fourth cup of wine – the cup of completion: where he takes us to be His people. He said He will drink that cup with us in Heaven at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. 

 The Feast of Passover is a faith declaration that we are redeemed by the Blood of the Lamb. It does something in us when we celebrate Passover. When we come together to remember God's great works of redemption, and declare the power of redemption in our lives today. 

Passover is very important to God. But the enemy hates it and works diligently to steal it. Satan wants to give us a bloodless religion, because a bloodless religion has no power but the power is in the Blood!

God's Word tells us in 1 Cor. 5:7 Jesus IS the Passover Lamb. When John introduced Jesus He said, "Behold the LAMB!" And Paul said: Christ, our PASSOVER LAMB has been slain! Celebrating Passover IS celebrating Jesus! 

Picture in your mind what took place on the original Passover night as everything pointed to Jesus. Every father in Israel was told to dip a hyssop branch into the blood of a lamb and smear it on the two doorposts of the house and repeat the action ... putting the blood on the lintel over the door. The motion they made with the hyssop branch, was making the sign of the Cross in the lambs blood!  

Because of this act of obedience each family experienced redemption from the power of the enemy! God's deliverance always comes by His Cross and by His Blood.  

Its not by accident that Jesus died on Passover. God could've had Jesus die any time of year. But it WAS God's will for Him to die at Passover, so we would recognize that He is the Passover Lamb! 

God went to great lengths to CONNECT the sacrifice of Jesus to Passover. 

It's interesting to compare the timetable of Jesus' crucifixion with the Passover celebration. Here are a few comparisons, although there are many more... 

The Passover Lamb had to be selected on a specific day. Exodus 12 instructs that the Passover lamb be chosen on the 10th day of 1st month. Jesus, the Lamb born in Bethlehem, entered the city, On the 10th day of 1st month and the people waved palm branches and shouted "Blessed is he that comes in the name of the LORD! And Save us, Son of David!" The masses designated Jesus as Israel's Messiah! The crowds had chosen their Passover Lamb! 

Then the Lamb had to be examined. Only a perfect, spotless and unblemished lamb would be sufficient for the Passover. As Jesus went to the Temple to teach and was approached by all teachers of the Law, each group posed difficult questions, trying to trap him. They were looking for any blemish which might disqualify Him as Messiah, but no one could find fault with Him. He was without blemish. 

The Leaven or impurity must be cast out. Passover is a time to cleanse every house and every trace of impurity is to be removed. After Jesus arrived in Jerusalem, He entered the Temple and cast out the moneychangers. He was following the Biblical instruction to prepare for Passover by cleansing His Father's house. 

Next the Lamb is taken to the altar for public display. On the morning of the 14th day of the 1st month, when all was set in order, the lamb was led out to the altar. At 9 a.m. that morning, the lamb was bound to the altar and put on public display for all to see. On the morning of the 14th day of the 1st month, when all had been fulfilled, Jesus was led out to Calvary. At 9 a.m. that morning, just as the lamb was being bound to the altar, Jesus was nailed to the Cross and put on public display at Calvary. 

The Lamb was slain at a specific time. At exactly 3 p.m. the high priest ascended the altar. As another priest blew a shofar on the temple wall, the high priest killed the sacrificial Lamb, and declared, "IT IS FINISHED!" At 3 p.m. on that high holy day, at the moment the Passover lamb was killed, Jesus cried with a loud voice, "IT IS FINISHED, "The debt has been paid in full!" and gave up His spirit. 

Today on Passover... let's  remember how Jesus has freed us from the slavery of sin, and delivered us from the dominion of darkness and made a way for us to get back to our Father. He's preparing a place for you and I. And He is coming back for his pure and spotless Bride, that we may be where He is - FOREVER.  


Tribe Recap of Good Friday, March 30, 2018 | Matthew 27 & Psalm 22

The final week of Jesus life began with a triumphal entry into Jerusalem.  The crowds roared, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!”  From there, Jesus cursed the fig tree, turned over tables, upset the religious leaders as he taught in the temple and enjoyed a last Passover with his disciples.

It was during this week at the home of Lazarus in Bethany that a woman anointed him with costly perfume worth a year’s wages.  “What a waste,” some of his disciples said, but Jesus told them this woman would be honored everywhere.  She had done him one of the kindest acts a person could do because while he was struggling to breath his last, surrounded by the hate of mankind, the smell of that wonderful perfume in his beard reminded him of his mission – those who were lost would be saved.

Jesus was crucified.  Crucifixion was one of the worst ways anyone could die, naked, exposed, mocked, and in excruciating pain while the natural course of the body succumbed to heart failure under the strain. Death.  This is the penalty for sin.

But Leviticus 17:11 tells us that the life is in the blood.  The word life here is synonymous with the word ‘soul’.  In other words, ‘the soul is in the blood’.  Jesus, the final sacrificial lamb, poured out his soul for us - his soul in exchange for ours.

Throughout Matthew’s account of the crucifixion, the prophecies of King David about the messiah were being fulfilled.  Psalm 22 gives stunning insights into how Jesus was to die including being offered sour wine, being surrounded by enemies, having his garments divided and his hands and feet pierced, being mocked, and feeling forsaken by God.

Jesus hung on the cross feeling utterly abandoned, but was Jesus separated from God?  Traditionally we have thought so as Jesus cries out, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me (Psalm 22:1).  Where was the Father during the crucifixion?

If you read on in Psalm 22 you come across verse 24: “For He has not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; Nor has He hidden His face from him; But when he cried to Him for help, He heard.”  After Jesus cries out it says in Matthew 48, “immediately one of them ran, and taking a sponge, he filled it with sour wine and put it on a reed, and gave Him a drink.” Shortly after this Jesus died.

I offer the following for your consideration, but what I see is Jesus crying for help and the Father, who did not hide his face from him who was afflicted, answers him by effectually saying, “The cup couldn’t pass, but you were obedient to drink it all, and now you may yield up your spirit, and as for your work on the is finished!” 

I believe the Father was present with Jesus in his darkest hour.  Jesus, who did nothing of his own initiative, saw the cup being offered in response to his prayer and took a drink as symbol of finishing the work (Matthew 26:39) and gave up his Spirit.  The Father dismissed Jesus, completely satisfied with the payment for sin.  Jesus may have appeared to be alone, but I see the fingerprints of a Father who never forsakes (Heb 13:4-6).

And the blood flowing from Jesus that the disciples figured was a horrible and defeated end to his life became the greatest victory ever won because the life of all mankind is found in the blood of Jesus.  It was the flowing blood and soul of Jesus that created the most unbelievable victory over death there could ever be.  The seeming victory of death over Jesus was the moment of Death’s greatest undoing.  Things are not always what they seem.

When our darkest hour comes, we can be confident that the Father is with us.  When all seems lost, we have an advocate who not only has a plan but who has secured a victorious end (Romans 8:28-29).

Because of what Jesus did on the cross, we can emerge from being a sinner doomed to hell to a son destined for heaven.  Covered in the blood and soul of Jesus, he becomes our identity as he lives in and through us.  Jesus became the curse of our sin to save us (Galatians 3:13 & I Timothy 1:15) so that the Father who is ever-present could see his kids come home. 

Imperfect humans become perfect soaked in Jesus’s blood, ready to be delivered to the Father as an inheritance. He is our reward and we are his.  So we reverently give God all we have in unspeakable gratitude for what he has accomplished. We were undone in our sin but Psalm 22 proclaims the finality of our hope with these words: “He has done it!”