The Christian Passover: As instituted by Jesus Christ at His last Passover with His disciples, the Christian Passover is the solemn ceremony in which the Christian commemorates Jesus’ sacrifice and death and renews his or her commitment to live under the spiritual terms of the New Covenant. The Passover is to be observed once a year on the night of the 14th day of the first month of the Calculated Hebrew Calendar. Because the Hebrew Calendar is a lunar-solar calendar, the actual date of the Passover will vary from year to year on our Roman Calendar (the Roman Calendar is strictly a solar calendar). In 2009, the Christian Passover falls on the night of April 7.

Following Jesus’ example, the Passover ceremony should begin approximately 30 minutes after sunset—when it is starting to become dark.

Who Should Partake of the Christian Passover? The Christian Passover should be observed only by those who have been baptized by full immersion in water—symbolizing one’s covenant death, as co-crucified with Jesus Christ, conjoined to His death for the forgiveness of sins (Rom. 6:1-10).  Those who have not been baptized into a symbolic covenant death through water baptism should not partake of the Christian Passover.

There are three parts to the Passover Ceremony: 1) Footwashing, 2) Eating the broken unleavened bread, and 3) Partaking of the wine.

For the profound meaning of these three aspects of the Christian Passover Ceremony, please read The Day Jesus the Christ Died and The Christian Passover (both can be ordered through our Web site, cbcg.org). The complete Passover Ceremony Service can be downloaded from our site as well.

How to Prepare for the Passover: Since the Passover Service is a solemn ceremony depicting Jesus’ death by crucifixion, it is not to be a night of fellowshipping with the brethren. Before Passover day, we should have already removed all leavening from our homes and cars. We should have examined ourselves in earnest, heartfelt prayer, repenting of our sins, and spiritually rededicating ourselves to God the Father and Jesus Christ with a loving heart and willing spirit. We need to thank them for the forgiveness of our sins which comes through the grace of God, by the sacrifice and shed blood of Jesus Christ—through which we also receive healing of our sicknesses and diseases. We need to also thank them for the gift of the Holy Spirit, which is the “earnest” of the eternal life we will obtain at the first resurrection, when Jesus returns.

The Feast of Unleavened Bread: This feast is seven days long, with the first day and the last day being annual Holy Days. We are not to engage in our work or employment on these two days. In 2009, the first Holy Day begins at sunset on April 8 and continues to sunset on April 9. The seventh day is from sunset on April 14 to sunset on April 15. (Sermon messages have already been sent out for these Holy Days, as well as for the weekly Sabbath during the feast. The messages are also posted on cbcg.org).

In the Old Testament, the Feast of Unleavened pictures ancient Israel leaving Egypt after God rescued them from their slavery by killing all the firstborn of Egypt, man and beast.

In the New Testament, the Feast of Unleavened Bread pictures how God the Father—through the sacrifice and shed blood of Jesus Christ—is granting men deliverance from sin and rescuing them from Satan the devil through His love and grace. We are to keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread because Christ is our sacrifice for the New Covenant. The apostle Paul commanded Gentile Christians (and thus all true Christians everywhere): “Therefore, purge out the old leaven, so that you may become a new lump, even as you are unleavened. For Christ our Passover was sacrificed for us. For this reason, let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth” (I Cor. 5:7-8).

The Feast of Unleavened Bread teaches us that only Jesus Christ—through His sacrifice, His shed blood and the power of the Holy Spirit—can save us. We cannot justify ourselves, we cannot save ourselves—nor can we continue to actively live in sin. As these verses show, leaven is used to picture sin. Because leaven is so common, God uses it symbolically to teach us that living in sin is the common way of every man and woman. Sin is everywhere! Just as we are to put leaven out of our homes and cars, we also have an obligation to put sin out of our lives. That is our part in overcoming sin, Satan and this world.

Christ died for our sins—therefore we are commanded to keep this feast. We are also commanded to eat unleavened bread during the seven days. We should take time to prepare unleavened food so we can enjoy the feast and commemorate the blessings of continued access to God the Father and Jesus Christ and the daily forgiveness of our sins.

Everyone can observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread—even those who are not yet baptized.

Overcoming Sin: Since sin begins in our minds, we overcome sin by using the Holy Spirit to wash and cleanse our minds—bringing every thought into obedience to Jesus Christ: “For although we walk in the flesh, we do not war [our spiritual warfare against sin] according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the overthrowing of strongholds, casting down vain imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought into the obedience of Christ; and having a readiness to avenge all disobedience, whenever your obedience has been fulfilled” (II Cor. 10:2-6).

Overcoming Satan the Devil: Also, through the power of God’s Holy Spirit we are able to overcome Satan the devil, as we yield to God and fight the good fight of faith: “Be humbled therefore under the mighty hand of God so that He may exalt you in due time; casting all your cares upon Him, because He cares for you. Be sober! Be vigilant! For your adversary the devil is prowling about as a roaring lion, seeking anyone he may devour. Whom resist, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are being fulfilled among your brethren who are in the world” (I Pet. 5:6-9).

This summary of the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread is designed for those who are beginning to understand the truth of the Bible and realize that the true New Testament Church is commanded by God to observe His annual feasts.

Again, The Day Jesus the Christ Died and The Christian Passover give the complete meaning of the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread. We will gladly send these books to you at no cost (you may order by e-mail, phone or letter).

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