Jesus Christ Our Passover




“When I see the blood, I will pass over you.”

Exodus 12:13

“For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us.”

I Corinthians 5:7



  1. We observe the Lord’s Supper today, and we seek at each observance to consider our Lord’s death some way.
  2. The Passover event and feast of Israel is likely the simplest and most powerful picture of Jesus Christ’s death.
  3. This is one of the best Bible stories for children, for it involves children, is simple, and points to Jesus Christ.
  4. God brought the mightiest nation on earth to its knees, and showed a great difference with His people Israel.
  5. His words to Israel should be precious to us, “When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Ex 12:13,23,27).
  6. In the great Day of Judgment rapidly approaching, He will pass over us by the book of life of the Lamb slain.
  7. With Paul’s application of it above to communion, even identifying unleavened bread, we use it confidently.

The Passover Is a Shadow

  1. We do not presume on Scripture to extract types and shadows without very strong reasons to do so.
    1. Men who preach types and shadows hardly need study, as most of it is from their imagination.
    2. Type and shadow preaching, which can be moving by creative storytellers, has little value to us.
    3. Since we have the reality and substance in the New Testament, let us emphasize the real thing.
    4. God made Paul, and bishops since him, to be able ministers of the New Testament (II Cor 3:6).
  2. The Bible tells us Old Testament ordinances were shadows and figures (Col 2:16-17; Heb 9:8-10).
    1. Why would you ever want to examine a shadow of anything, when you have the reality in hand?
    2. Why would you ever want to embrace the figure of anything, when you can have the real thing?
    3. Will you show me details of your car, house, or wife by showing me her shadow on the ground?
    4. The O.T. ordinances were imposed on Israel like a rough schoolmaster (Gal 3:24-25; Heb 9:10).
  3. The Bible says O.T. ordinances were elementary and rudimentary instruction (Ga 4:3,9; Col 2:8,20).
    1. Paul, knowing more than all modern teachers combined, demoted Israel’s figurative covenant.
    2. The reason the new covenant is called new is because the other is old and going away (He 8:13).
    3. Furthermore, Paul called the O.T. beggarly, carnal, weak, worldly (Gal 4:9; Heb 7:16; 9:1,10).
    4. We thank God for His reformation and seek worship in spirit and truth (Heb 9:10; John 4:21-24).
  4. D. Infatuation with O.T. buildings, ceremonies, sacrifices today is just a distracting fad (II Tim 4:3-4).
    1. Much of it could be called fables, for they make the stuff up as they go, neglecting N.T. doctrine.
    2. There is nothing you can learn from O.T. types and shadows that is not much clearer in the N.T.
    3. Distrust preachers that have many sermons or write books about shadows rather than the reality.
    4. This distraction has gone so far today as churches keeping Passover feasts and all kinds of junk.
    5. They build models of what they think the tabernacle or temple looked like to explain the gospel?!
  5. The Bible tells us the Passover Feast is fulfilled in the Lord Jesus Christ (I Cor 5:7; Luke 22:15-22).
  6. The Passover and Feast of Unleavened Bread are the same; let no one deceive you; see notes below.

The Passover Is a Fact

  1. We have three excellent chapters dedicated to details of the Passover and its origination (Ex 11-13).
  2. Israel was sojourners 430 years, 215 in Egypt, after Abram’s covenant (Exodus 12:40-41; Gal 3:17).
    1. The 400 years of Genesis 15:13 was about his seed, thus commencing with Isaac 25 years later.
    2. For the math of 430 and 215 years, proving the value of commas … see the author’s document.
  3. They had been much afflicted by their Egyptian taskmasters, who feared their growth (Ex 1:7-14).
  4. They had cried to God for deliverance and were heard, even their groans and sighs (Ex 2:23-25; 3:7).
  5. God had sent nine plagues on Pharaoh and Egypt, which were ignored and rejected by God’s decree.
    1. When Moses’ rod turned into a serpent and swallowed their serpents, it was a sign, not a plague.
    2. Then followed blood, frogs, lice, flies, murrain, boils, hail, locusts, and darkness, nine plagues.
  6. The final plague was to be the death of the firstborn in all Egypt, both of man and beast (Ex 11:4-7).
  7. Israel delivered their firstborn by sprinkling blood around their doors (Exodus 12:1-13,21-23,29-39).
    1. A lamb was chosen for each household according to their eating on the tenth of the month (12:3).
    2. If the house was too small to eat a whole lamb, then they could share with another family (12:4).
    3. The lamb had to be perfect, without defects; it had to be a male; it had to be a year or less (12:5).
    4. The lamb was separated from the 10th to the 14th of the month, then killed in the evening (12:6).
    5. The blood was to be struck on the side posts and cross post of the house where they ate it (12:7).
    6. The lamb had to be eaten that night, roasted, with unleavened bread and bitter herbs (12:8).
    7. The lamb could not be eaten rare or boiled in water, but roasted with fire in its entirety (12:9).
    8. It was all eaten or burned that night, and anything remaining was burned in the morning (12:10).
    9. It was to be eaten in a hurry, dressed and prepared to move out, girdle, shoes, and staff (12:11).
    10.  God would pass through the land of Egypt to kill the firstborn of man, beast, and ruler (12:12).
    11. God said, “When I see the blood, I will pass over you,” which is why it is the Passover (12:13).
    12. Moses told the elders of Israel to do as God had commanded and kill the Passover lamb (12:21).
    13. They were to take hyssop and apply blood round their door from a bason and stay inside (12:22).
    14. The Lord would check the doors of Israel and not enter where blood was round the door (12:23).
    15. The LORD entered Egypt at midnight, killing a firstborn in each family, man and beast (12:29).
    16. The whole nation rose up in the middle night in anguish of a dead person in every house (12:30).
    17. Pharaoh finally gave unconditional permission for the Israelites to freely leave Egypt (12:31).
    18. He told them to take everything with them and leave, and he asked Moses for a blessing (12:32).
    19. Fearing they would all be dead soon, if things continued, the people urged them to leave (12:33).
    20. Since they were in a hurry with slow yeast, they took unleavened bread and their tools (12:34).
    21. And they plundered the nation (for back wages?) by borrowing much of the Egyptians (12:35).
    22. God moved the Egyptians to generously give them whatever they requested of them (12:36).
    23. There were 600,000 men. If we add in women and children, we might have 2-4 million (12:37).
    24. A mixt multitude went with them, which were Egyptians and other strangers to Israel (12:38).
    25. In order to eat, they baked unleavened cakes from their dough, for they had no provision (12:39).
  8. An annual feast was ordained for their deliverance from death and Egypt (Ex 12:14-20,24-28,40-51).
    1. The LORD ordained a perpetual feast for them to remember this fantastic event (Exodus 12:14).
    2. The feast was for seven days; only unleavened bread was allowed; death was applied (Ex 12:15).
    3. The feast was to begin with a Sabbath day and end with a Sabbath – no work done (Ex 12:16).
    4. It is called the Feast of Unleavened Bread; it is called the Passover; they are the same (Ex 12:17).
    5. The feast ran from the evening of the 14th to the evening of the 21st of Abib/Nisan (Ex 12:18).
    6. Any violation of the leaven commandment brought death, regardless of their origin (Ex 12:19).
    7. Unleavened bread was to be the main staple; there was not to be anything leavened (Ex 12:20).
    8. This was a perpetual ordinance to be kept by successive generations in Israel forever (Ex 12:24).
    9. Even when they came to Canaan, they were to continue to keep this ordained feast (Ex 12:25).
    10. God knew such a feast would trigger children to ask of its meaning and importance (Ex 12:26).
    11. They were to tell successive generations of God’s great deliverance of their children (Ex 12:27).
    12. They people did exactly as Moses and Aaron had commanded them regarding it (Ex 12:28).
    13. From the time God made a covenant with Abram to this event was exactly 430 years (Ex 12:40).
    14. As God has promised Abram, the whole nation was delivered and went out of Egypt (Ex 12:41).
    15. It was a night to be remembered; it was a night to be perpetually observed annually (Ex 12:42).
    16. No stranger from the commonwealth of Israel was to partake of the Passover Feast (Ex 12:43).
    17. Purchased slaves, bondservants, were circumcised so that they could partake of it (Ex 12:44).
    18. Just simple visitors, foreigners, or hired servants were not close enough to partake (Ex 12:45).
    19. The lamb was eaten in one place; it was not carried abroad; not a bone was broken (Ex 12:46).
    20. All the congregation was to keep it, as a congregation; it was not kept by only a few (Ex 12:47).
    21. Circumcision was the necessary condition for strangers to be able to partake of it (Ex 12:48).
    22. There was no difference made after a man met the conditions, either Jew or Gentile (Ex 12:49).
    23. The nation of Israel instituted this annual feast and kept it according to Moses’ laws (Ex 12:50).
    24. That day, Passover Day, the 14th of Abib/Nisan, the Lord brought Israel out of Egypt (Ex 12:51).

The Passover Lamb Shows Jesus Christ

  1. Jesus is the Lamb of God, and He is the Passover Lamb of God (John 1:29; Ex 12:21 cp I Cor 5:7).
  2. Jesus is the fulfillment of the Passover, which He declared to His disciples plainly (Luke 22:15-16).
  3. The lamb had to be without blemish, true of Jesus (Ex 12:5; Luke 23:4; Heb 7:26; I Pet 1:19; 2:22).
  4. The lamb had to be a male, true of Mary’s firstborn son (Exodus 12:5; Gen 3:15; Matthew 1:21-25).
  5. The lamb was young, still in its first year, and Jesus was very early in life (Ex 12:5; Isaiah 53:8).
  6. The lamb could not have any bones broken, which was very true of Jesus (Ex 12:47; John 19:36).
  7. The lamb’s blood was shed for another, though it had done no wrong (Ex 12:7,22; I Pet 1:2,18-20).
  8. The lamb died on the fourteenth, and so did our Lord Jesus (Exodus 12:6; John 18:28; 19:14,31).
  9. The lamb was killed in the late afternoon, as was our Lord Jesus (Exodus 12:6; John 19:31,42).
  10. The lamb had to be killed in Jerusalem and nowhere else, so was Jesus (Deut 16:5-6; Luke 9:51).

The Passover Death Is Scriptural

  1. God warned Adam that the consequence for his sin would be death (Gen 2:17; Rom 5:12-14; 6:23).
  2. The final application of death is the lake of fire, called the second death (Rev 2:11; 20:6,14; 21:8).
  3. God has angels with slaughter weapons, which kill His enemies, but save the marked (Ezek 9:1-2).
  4. One angel of the LORD Jehovah took out 185,000 battle-tested Assyrian soldiers (II Kings 19:35).
  5. In the great Day of Judgment, angels will separate the elect from reprobates (Matt 13:36-43,49-50).
  6. Pharaoh had commanded the death of all male children, but God only took his firstborn (Ex 1:16).
  7. God sent His death angel into Egypt for work to be done there (Ex 12:23; II Sam 24:16; Acts 12:23).
  8. For more about angels with slaughtering weapons.

The Passover Deliverance Shows Salvation

  1. Salvation (of the firstborn) was by substitutionary death of another. Death occurred in every house.
  2. Salvation was by God’s choice, for not a dog moved his tongue against Israel that night (Ex 11:7).
  3. Salvation was unconditional on the part of the firstborn, as blood was applied by another (I Pet 1:2).
  4. Israel was delivered from bondage in Egypt, and we from sin and death (Eph 2:1-3; Heb 2:14-15).
  5. For God to pass over a house required blood, and blood is part of the New Testament (Heb 9:12-28).
  6. God bought, purchased, redeemed, ransomed Israel, so we (Ex 15:13; Ps 74:2; Is 43:3; Gal 3:13).
  7. Firstfruits were offered on Sunday; Jesus is first fruits of them that slept (Lev 23:4-14; I Cor 15:20).
  8. They had to stay in their houses until morning, and we must stay upon Christ lest we be a castaway.

The Passover Supper Shows the Lord’s Supper

  1. The feast was established by an ordinance, and our feast is a divine ordinance also (I Cor 11:2,23).
  2. The feast was a memorial ordinance of a past event, for it to be remembered (Ex 12:14,42; 13:3,8).
  3. Jesus Christ observed the Passover, and the Last Supper came out of the Passover (Luke 22:13-20).
  4. Strangers could not partake of it without conditions, as with baptism and membership in the church.
  5. Violations of rules would cost you your place in Israel, just as the church (I Cor 5:1-13; II Thes 3:6).
  6. The bread was and is unleavened, due to haste, but also to show absence of sin in Jesus (I Cor 5:6-8).
  7. It is a night to be much observed and remembered, just as our Passover (Ex 12:42 cp I Cor 11:26).
  8. We practice closed communion, and the Passover was closed to covenant members (Ex 12:44,48).
  9. The whole assembly of the church kept it, and we gather the whole church (Ex 12:6; I Cor 11:20,33).
  10. The whole assembly kept it at the same time, so we wait for each other (Ex 12:6; I Cor 11:20-21,33).
  11. History and tradition describe the wine used, and we use wine as did Jesus (Gen 14:18; Luke 7:34).
  12. It was not carried abroad from the supper, and we reject Rome carrying their host (Exodus 12:46).


  1. Let us rejoice in a clear type and shadow of Jesus dying to save us, but let us be far more joyful for the reality.
  2. His words to Israel should be precious to us, “When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Ex 12:13,23,27).
  3. In the great Day of Judgment rapidly approaching, He will pass over us by the book of life of the Lamb slain.
  4. Let us be thankful for a greater night to be observed, and let us love the Lord’s Supper ordained to observe it.

For Further Study:

  1. Sermon Outline: Who Shall Declare His Generation?
  2. Sermon Outline: Isaiah 53 
  3. Sermon Outline: I Corinthians 5
  4. Website Document: Closed Communion.
    1. Bible Study Slide Show: The Lord’s Supper

Notes regarding the KJV use of Easter in Acts 12:4

  1. It should be obvious to those who understand and use context that Herod waited until the Jews’ Passover feast was over.
  2. The Holy Spirit by Luke indicates that Herod imprisoned Peter just before or during the feast of unleavened bread (12:3).
  3. The Greek underlying Easter in 12:4 is pascha, for passover. There is no contradiction: passover = unleavened bread.
  4. Let God be true, but every man a liar … passover feast = feast of unleavened bread (Ezekiel 45:21; Luke 22:1,7; etc.).
  5. The OED indicates that the second meaning for Easter is the Passover, the first being celebration of Jesus Christ’s resurrection and corresponding to the Jewish passover, the name of which it bears in most of the European languages.
  6. Only scornful skeptics or those willfully ignorant will have any difficulty with the choice of Easter by KJV translators.
  7. The KJV translators understood Easter as a Christian festival, for they had a calendar for it in the first edition of the KJV.
  8. Much more could be said to fill in minor details about this question of translation, but this should be sufficient for most.
  9. God has written His word to confound and confuse those that are unwilling to trust Him or the simple context of a verse.
  10.  For another KJV-believer’s study and perspective on this issue.