We find this new commandment given by Messiah in Luke 22:19 and confirmed by Paul in 1 Corinthians 11:24-25. Messiah gave this commandment following the supper he had on the night that he was betrayed. First, he washed the disciples’ feet, then he gave them leavened bread to represent his spiritual body, and then the fruit of the vine to represent his blood. This was not a celebration of Passover. The fruit of the vine represented His death that had to occur to make possible the giving of the Spirit on Pentecost. The leavened bread represents the distribution of his spiritual body beginning with Pentecost. The Jewish Passover, John 6:4, was 24 hours later on the night of Abib 15.
Messiah was the Passover lamb. (1 Corinthians 5:7; John 1:29) He was slain from the foundation of the world. (Revelation 13:8) The night he was betrayed was before he was to die on the tree at 3 PM during the daylight portion of the 14th of Abib. It would have been against the rules of the Pharisees to have Passover that night. The leaven was not required to be removed until noon on the 14th so the bread he gave to his disciples was leavened NOT unleavened.
It is of note that the bread of the firstfruits is leavened bread. (Leviticus 23:17) Following his resurrection, Messiah was to become a firstfruit of them that slept. (1 Corinthians 15:20) He was giving a new commandment to his disciples, who would become firstfruits after receiving the Spirit of the Father and the down payment of His Spirit on Pentecost. This gathering, on the night Messiah was betrayed, was a convocation of those who were to be the firstfruits of the new covenant.
Messiah’s death would end the old covenant and initiate the new covenant. There would be some changes. Circumcision of the flesh would no longer be required. It was now to be a circumcision without hands or baptism. The Passover of the 15th of Abib was from the old covenant. The firstfruits or saints would now remember his death that would occur on the 14th. They would follow his commandment to remember him on the evening of the 14th with foot washing, leavened bread and fruit of the vine.
Under the old covenant, Yom Kippurim was required every year to cover the sins of Israel temporarily with animal blood. The new covenant ended this annual necessity for the Levitical high priest to enter the holy of holies with animal blood. Messiah sacrificed himself one time and the sins of all mankind were covered. (Hebrews 10: 10-11)
Those who are baptized in the name of YahwehShua become firstfruits, and if they overcome to the end will be resurrected when Messiah returns. The rest of mankind will be resurrected after the 1000-year reign of Messiah. We are resurrected because the firstfruits have Messiah being formed within them (Galatians 4:19) and in the resurrection we will be like him. (1 John 3:2)
Under the old covenant, Passover was to be a “memorial” for the day the Israelites were preserved and the first-born Egyptians died in their place. (Exodus 12:14) The new covenant replaced this memorial with a new memorial given by Messiah on the evening of the 14th. A synonym for remembrance is the word memorial. The old covenant Passover memorial is an event that saves only the physical Israelites. The new memorial instituted on the night before Messiah died on the tree, looked forward to the sacrifice he would make the next day. That sacrifice was made for the whole world and not just the Israelites. The shedding of his blood gave salvation to many and life to all. No human beings would be left in death. All would be reconciled and resurrected to life!
The keeping of the old covenant Passover had been required. That Passover meal was eaten on the night of the 15th. Messiah was the Word that brought the old covenant Passover to the Israelites. He is also the one that brought the last supper memorial to the firstfruits on the night of the fourteenth. The events that occurred on the 15th and the 14th were commandments proclaimed by the Son of Yahweh. The firstfruits are commanded to observe the fourteenth as well as the seven days of the feast of unleavened bread, which is also known as the feast of Passover
The memorial or remembrance required on the 14th is a commandment personally given by Messiah. John records Messiah saying this about his commandments in John 14:15: “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” Also consider these words recorded in John 14:21: “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.”
Should you desire to be obedient to Messiah, and therefore his Father, you may wish to know how to properly “remember Him.” The old covenant requirement is changed. It is no longer the 15th,but the 14th. It is no longer unleavened bread, but leavened bread. This is where we must become like the Bereans and search the Scriptures. (Acts 17: 11) We should not just accept what we have been told.
If you have read the other articles on our website, you are aware that we do not just accept the birth name of Messiah for a valid baptism. We have read Deuteronomy 29:20 and 21:23, which indicate that he who dies in sin will have his name blotted out. He became a curse for us and suffered in our place. (Galatians 3:13) We have also learned more about the night Messiah ate his last supper with the disciples.
You must pray to Yahweh for his truth and search the Scriptures. We are blessed with many aids to conduct an effective Bible study. I especially like Strong’s Concordance and the Companion Bible. The Diaglott and Rotherham’s Emphasized Bible are also very helpful.
Another book we have found especially helpful is, The Messianic Feast, by T. Alex Tennent. He certainly is a scholar, but Yahweh has not revealed to him the truth about the Father’s and Son’s names. He also believes in a Sunday resurrection and Thursday death of Messiah. These are significant differences from what we believe and there may be other examples as well. Read carefully and question what you read. But, his study of why the last supper on the night of the fourteenth is NOT the Passover is excellent. He demonstrates in so many ways why it was not a Passover meal and the bread was leavened. His study harmonizes with our understanding of the new covenant. Please pray to Yahweh for guidance as you read and study this book. Any questions or comments would be helpful and we would be happy to respond to them. May Yahweh guide you in the study.
Since our forming of the Light of YahwehShua, we have continued to develop a deeper understanding of the new covenant. As you read our articles, you can follow our journey into this better understanding. Passover, the days of unleavened bread, and Pentecost are very important. We will continue to search the Scriptures. It is our desire to, “earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.” (Jude 1: 3)
Please walk with us in an effort to draw closer to Yahweh and YahwehShua. We welcome your questions. It is acceptable to have questions and concerns. That is expected. If you are being called to the body of Messiah, then this is an exciting opportunity we wish to share with you.
May Yahweh bless your efforts.
In 2019, the 14thof Abib begins at sunset on April 19, and ends at sundown on April 20. After sundown on the evening of the fourteenth (April 19), the firstfruits in St Louis have a gathering where we pray, read Messiah’s words from the Last Supper, wash each other’s feet, eat unleavened bread, drink grape juice and close with a song. In this manner we remember Messiah’s death on the day of the 14th.
It is our understanding that the early believers would fast while Messiah was on the tree (from 9 AM to 3 PM). This is not commanded, but is a voluntary observance.
The early believers kept the days of unleavened bread, but not the Passover on the 15th. The 15th is a high day and we do observe this with a service. The last day of unleavened bread is also a high day and we observe that as such. From noon on the 14thuntil sundown on the 21stday of Abib (April 26-27) we eat unleavened bread.
We begin to count toward Pentecost (Shavuoth) on the day after the weekly Sabbath during the days of unleavened bread. (April 21-22) This is also the day of the wavesheaf offering. Seven weekly Sabbaths later plus one day is Pentecost. (50 days, June 8-9)
We remember or memorialize the death of Messiah on the 14th, but do not celebrate a Passover on the 15th. The Passover observance is for the physical Israelites. Messiah was the Passover lamb who was slain from the foundation of the world for our sins. It was his blood that allows the firstfruits to receive the Father’s Spirit and the rest of mankind to be resurrected and not left in death.