Last week we talked about Communion, and how it grew out of the Passover meal. The Passover meal was a remembrance– a time when the Jewish people looked back on their deliverance from Egypt:
Numbers 9:1-5 – And the LORD spake unto Moses in the wilderness of Sinai, in the first month of the second year after they were come out of the land of Egypt, saying,
Let the children of Israel also keep the passover at his appointed season. In the fourteenth day of this month, at even, ye shall keep it in his appointed season: according to all the rites of it, and according to all the ceremonies thereof, shall ye keep it. And Moses spake unto the children of Israel, that they should keep the passover. And they kept the passover on the fourteenth day of the first month at even in the wilderness of Sinai: according to all that the LORD commanded Moses, so did the children of Israel.
The Passover meal commemorated the last of the plagues that the Lord brought upon Egypt for Pharaoh’s refusal to let His people go. The plagues in and of themselves are interesting, because each one targeted a different god that the Egyptians had.
At first, the Egyptian Magicians tried to do similar works, trying to prove that Moses was doing tricks. They tried to use the science of their day to explain the supernatural just like some people we know try to use science to prove that there is no need for a God– but I digress.
The last plague was that of the death of the firstborn. The Bible isn’t clear as to whether it was just children. In fact, a literal reading of the English could mean even first born adults. In any case, all the firstborn died and Pharaoh finally freed them.
The point to take away from here is God’s great power that was demonstrated to Israel. They saw mighty miracles. They saw the Red Sea part.
But they also complained and fell away. It did not take them long to forget. I know that I’ve heard many times people state that if only God would do something big, something miraculous, they would believe. And yet, these people that saw such amazing things forgot.
That’s why God commanded them to hold the feast and remember.