Most churches teach that Christ finished the Plan of Redemption when He was crucified. But the very first event in God’s great plan for man’s regeneration was the death of Christ. We find the operation of this great Sacrifice beginning in Eden, when God killed a lamb or goat, in order to cover the nakedness (type of sin) of Adam and Eve with skins. We find it operating when Abel sacrificed a substitute lamb. And so the Passover is the first of these events picturing to God’s children year by year His great plan.
Numbers 28:16-17: “IN the fourteenth day of the first month is the passover of the Lord. And in the fifteenth day of this month is the feast: seven days shall unleavened bread be eaten.”
This feast was not the 14th, but the 15th. It was the Passover, when the lamb was killed, that was the 14th. The daylight part of the 14th was the preparation for the feast (Matt. 27:62; Mark 15:42; Luke 23:54; John 19:14). Note, in Jesus’ day the Jews celebrated their passover one day late according to the tradition of the elders (John 18:28).
Let us get this point thoroughly established in our minds, for if this is true, as it is, then all of these days are still binding upon us, by New Testament, as well as Old Testament authority!
Notice Matthew 26:5. The chief priests and the scribes, conspiring to kill Jesus, said: “Not on the feast day, lest there be an uproar among the people.” They hastened so they could take and kill Him the day before the feast, or on the 14th Abib (Nisan).
Mark 14:2 says the same thing. Now to establish that the feast day was the day after the Passover festival, and that it was the high day Sabbath-the day after Jesus was crucified, notice John 13:29: “For some of them thought, because Judas had the bag [was treasurer-Fenton translation], that Jesus had said unto him, Buy those things that we have need of against the feast….” Surely this proves the feast was the following day-the 15th Abib (Nisan), as all these scriptures positively affirm. For further information on this vital subject, write for our free booklet The Resurrection Was Not On Sunday.
Now let us examine carefully I Corinthians 5:7-8. Churches have applied this to the Passover. Notice it does not say, nor apply to, Passover at alL Let us willingly, prayerfully, study to see what it does say:
“… For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us: therefore LET us KEEP THE FEAST. . . . ” Notice it. Because Christ, our Passover, has been sacrificed, therefore let us of the NEW Testament dispensation-because Christ had died- keep, what? Notice it! Not the Passover here which was on the 14th Abib (Nisan)-but let us keep the feast-which was the 15th! The high-day Sabbath of John 19:31! The annual holy day. And, in a larger sense, the feast included all seven of the days of unleavened bread, including the second holy day, or Sabbath, on the 21st Abib (Nisan)! We cannot escape this, if we are yielded to the Lord and the Word of God! There it is, in plain language, in the New Testament! Because Christ was crucified, therefore let us keep the feast! The 14th was the Passover, but in the 15th day of this month is the feast! Let us no longer apply that to the Passover, for it says “feast.”