Okay, NO. Blue, plastic cups aren't the cups traditionally used for drink, but let's focus on that plate there. The bread, or the matzo, represents how the Israelites left Egypt in such a hurry they could not wait for their bread dough to rise, and thus we get unleavened bread or matzo. Also, leaven symbolizes corruption and sin. What's the connection for Christians? We are made free from sin through the bread of life, Jesus. The bitter herbs represent the bitterness of slavery the Jews experienced in Egypt. As Christians, we can also connect that bitterness to our sin that holds us in bondage if but for Christ's work on the cross. The charoset, a sweet mix of apples and raisins, symbolizes the mortar which the Jewish slaves used to cement bricks. We also dipped egg in to salt water to remember the tears the Jews shed during their servitude. Are you catching the themes of bondage and freedom going on here? There are so many other symbols and discoveries we made throughout the dinner. But I'll stop here for now.
Tonight, the Manninas were invited to one of the coolest Easter parties we've ever been to. Ever heard of a Passover Seder? I'd heard of it, but always thought it was something I should stay away from. Like that's what Jewish people do, but we Christians believe something else. So, a Seder can't be for me.
Wrong. The rich history of remembering God's deliverance of the Jews out of Egypt is part of my history as a Christian. So my dear friend Jennifer proved me wrong this evening by introducing me to a Messianic Seder. A Messianic Seder basically takes things one step further and shows how all the Scripture and symbols in a Seder actually point to what we believe to be the fulfillment found in Jesus Christ.
So where do I start? Food, let's start with food, shall we?
The other enlightening part of this meal was realizing that we were observing the same Passover Jesus celebrated with his disciples before going to the cross. Except Jesus was bringing in a new covenant. How moving it was to recall his words:
"23 For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 25 In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes." 1 Corinthians 11:23-26
So let's transition to a few more pictures, shall we? So here we all are. There's our hostess with the mostest in the background trying to make sense of everything.
A Seder is a family event done around the dinner table. There's our fearless family leader, Tory. Mike got to play the roll of a child as we went around the table asking questions, reciting Scripture, and explaining the meaning behind the food and drink. He's such a cute little boy.
There's our hostess again, and my old roomie Jess. This really was a family event if you ask me- all my old roomies, my wedding planner, former co-workers. Love them!
Oh, and in the middle of the Seder, you pause to feast. And feast we did! Check out this lamb! Cooked to perfection!
And homemade bread!
The lamb!! Oh yes, we already covered that.
I don't think dessert is actually part of a traditional Seder, but this little girl didn't seem to mind!
Hello there Scott and Hayden. They also played the role of children. Scott's a little too good at it.
Oh wait. Hayden, were you planning on having children someday? Our girls are attacking your husband. Sorry. That can't help the cause.
And there you have it folks! A Messianic Seder!
To my Christian family and friends out there, have a most blessed Easter. Christ our Lord is risen today. Hallelujah!