I forgot to turn off the skype and turn off the sound and it sounded like someone trying calling us at 2am. When I got up to check and see if they left a number, the birdfeeder was being drawn to the house by some critter. It was too dark to see the critter, but our inside cat was all alertness, and I could see the gallon of seed being drawn or pulled toward the brick window ledge. But, it was too dark to make out the critter. Was it the raccoon again or an oppossum or a rat? The critter was not in line of sight for the motion detector on the back yard light. So strange.
I have been watching re-runs of the Discovery shuttle liftoff. During actual liftoff yesterday, Bob's brother and sister-in-law met us at a local restaurant for supper, and Ben came along. It was fun to get caught up on their news. Since they are having breathing problems in the high humidity that is Houston, they are looking for jobs locally. We skype=ed with James so he could see Uncle Bart and Aunt Janice, and brother Ben, too.
Bob made it through all his printed notes during his Sunday School lesson yesterday. It was a tiny crowd as many were traveling for spring break, and a half dozen were busy with a budget meeting. But, it was a good lesson. All the elements of the Passover meal point back to remember the miracle of the Jews release from 400 years of slavery, but all the details point toward Christ on the cross...from the lamb, to the pierced unleaven bread, the Jews were told to celebrate the Passover forever. And Jesus fulfilled that pass over by taking our place on the cross and dying for all the sins of the entire world throughout human history. It would be like us being told that at Christmas time we were to both give and open presents each December 25th, but finding out that the present was actually a picture of Jesus. Oh, yeah, it is!
The Jews at Passover, at the original first Passover, were told to eat a meal of roast lamb prepared precisely after being set aside on a certain day, and killed on a certain day, eaten with their traveling clothes on. The doors and lintil marked with the blood of the lamb to signal they believed what God promised to do, and obeyed His very precise instructions. For the next forty years, as they wandered in the wilderness, and as God taught them more lessons transitioning from a heritage of slavery to the new heritage of being a new and free nation, they were to celebrate the Passover to always remember what God did to bring them out of Egypt and a hopeless, helpless situation. Looking back, the pictures are so clear. I am sure that every year there were moms that sighed at the "celebration" meal that fell heavy on their shoulders, and the children asked, "why?" yet, preserving this precise celebration that was like our 4th of July kept them ever mindful that God was in control of history and had a unique job for them to do as a nation. God rescued. God did all the work of saving.
And when Jesus celebrated the Passover with his disciples, their drowsy, droopy eyes must have snapped wide awake after eating the lamb and drinking the wine when Jesus said, "this bread is my body---eat it in remembrance of Me". Whoa. Jesus changed the sacred Passover. Only God could do that! How dare He. And when Jesus talked about not drinking the cup again until in the Kingdom, all they could hear was He said something about suffering, and leaving---where was He going??!!
From our vantage point over two thousand years since that Passover just hours before the Cross, we cannot imagine what it was like. For every year of their lives, each of the disciples had trudged to Jerusalem for these solemn celebrations. Every year they had eaten roasted lamb, and unleaven bread to remember their beginning. It would be like someone messing with the 4th of July or Christmas---and telling us to change our traditions.
Since the destruction of the Temple in 70 AD, the Jews no longer include the roasted lamb in their Passover celebration. And modern Jews have added an egg and salt water and use the shank bone on their Passover plates. Leave it to mankind to want to add stuff to God's precise instructions. Christians from the just after the Cross started meeting on Sunday instead of the Sabbath, Saturday. And Christians are guilty of trying to placate the heathen practices of worshipping trees and winter soltice by celebrating Jesus' birthday on December 25th. The Bible does not say that Jesus was born December 25th. He was probably born mid April, in the spring. And since He rose from the dead, the tomb is empty, so there is no sacred place, no shrine to visit.