- Parent Category: Salvation History
- Category: The Law and the Prophets, Preparation
- Written by Bishop Alexander (Mileant)
- Hits: 3558
Without a doubt, the most important event in the life of the Hebrew nation was the exodus from Egypt and the reception of the Promised Land. The Lord saved the Hebrew nation from backbreaking slavery, gave it His Godly commandments on Mt. Zion, concluded an alliance with it and lead it into the land promised to its forefathers. All these great events in the life of the chosen people were concentrated in the holiday of Passover. In this holiday the Jews annually commemorated the innumerable blessings of God, rendered to the Hebrew nation.
Now we will contrast the Hebrew Old Testament Passover with the greatest event of the New Testament. The Lord Jesus Christ endured suffering, died on the Cross and was resurrected from the dead precisely in the days of the Hebrew Passover. This concurrence of these two utmost events — the formation of the Old Testament Israel and the founding of the New Testament Church — cannot be accidental! It shows that there exists a deep internal connection between the Paschal events of the Old and New Testament, namely: the greatest event in the life of the Hebrew nation was the prototype of the New Testament events. In order to see this spiritual connection, we will compare these events.
The Old Testament Passover
The New Testament Easter
|The slaughter of the pure lamb by whose blood were redeemed the Israelite first-born.||The death on the cross by God’s Lamb, by whose blood are redeemed the first-born of the Christians.|
|The crossing of the Red Sea by the Jews and deliverance from bondage.||Baptism frees humans from the bondage of sin.|
|Entrance in alliance with God on the 50th day after their exodus from Egypt and reception of God’s Commandments.||
The descent of the Holy Spirit on the 50th day after Passover, by which was established the New Testament.
|Wanderings in the desert and various trials.||A Christian’s life amidst trials and sorrows.|
|Partaking of the Manna miraculously sent by God.||The partaking by the faithful of the “Bread of Heaven,” Body and Blood of Christ.|
|The erection of the copper serpent, by looking at which the Jews were healed from snake bites.||Christ’s Cross, by looking at which, the faithful save themselves from the snares of the devil.|
|The entrance of the Jews into the promised land.||The reception by the faithful of the Kingdom of Heaven.|
Truly, the similarities are striking! The Lord Jesus Christ himself, as well as His apostles, pointed out the existence of these parallels between the Old Testament and the New Testament events connected with Pascha. This way, we see that, not only the prophets wrote about the Messiah and about the New Testament times, but the whole religious life of the Hebrew nation in the Old Testament era was most intimately connected to the matters of the Messiah. This fact indicates to us the complete spiritual unity of the New Testament Church with the Old Testament Israel. For this reason, all the prophecies in which are mentioned the names Israel, Jerusalem, Zion and so on, have a full and complete realization in the blessed Church of Christ.