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On The Physical Death of Jesus Christ
The Journal of the American Medical Association ^ | March 21, 1986 | William Edwards, M.D.

Posted on 04/02/2010 9:31:35 AM PDT by Choose Ye This Day

Reprinted from JAMA - The Journal of the American Medical Association

March 21, 1986, Volume 256

Copyright 1986, American Medical Association

By Permission of Mayo Foundation

ON THE PHYSICAL DEATH OF JESUS CHRIST

William D. Edwards, MD; Wesley J. Gabel, MDiv; Floyd E Hosmer, MS, AMI

From the Departments of Pathology (Dr. Edwards) and Medical Graphics (Mr. Hoamer), Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn.; and the Homestead United Methodist Church, Rochester, Minn., and the West Bethel United Methodist Church, Bethel, Minn. (Pastor Gabel).

Reprint requests to Department of Pathology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN 55905 (Dr. Edwards)

* Jesus of Nazareth underwent Jewish and Roman trials, was flogged, and was sentenced to death by crucifixion. The scourging produced deep stripelike lacerations and appreciable blood loss, and it probably set the stage for hypovolemic shock, as evidenced by the fact that Jesus was too weakened to carry the crossbar (patibulum) to Golgotha. At the site of crucifixion, his wrists were nailed to the patibulum and, after the patibulum was lifted onto the upright post (stipes), his feet were nailed to the stipes. The major pathophysiologic effect of crucifixion was an interference with normal respirations. Accordingly death resulted primarily from hypovolemic shock and exhaustion asphyxia. Jesus' death was ensured by the thrust of a soldier's spear into his side. Modern medical interpretation of the historical evidence indicate that Jesus was dead when taken down from the cross.

(JAMA 1986;255:1455-1463)

The life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth have formed the basis for a major world religion (Christianity), have appreciably influenced the course of human history, and, by virtue of a compassionate attitude towards the sick, also have contributed to the development of modern medicine. The eminence of Jesus as a historical figure and the suffering and controversy associated with his death have stimulated us to investigate, in an interdisciplinary manner, the circumstances surrounding his crucifixion. Accordingly, it is our intent to present not a theological treatise but rather a medically and historically accurate account of the physical death of the one called Jesus Christ.

SOURCES

The source material concerning Christ's death comprises a body of literature and not a physical body or its skeletal remains. Accordingly, the credibility of any discussion of Jesus' death will be determined primarily by the credibility of one's sources. For this review, the source material includes the writings of ancient Christian and non-Christian authors, the writings of modern authors, and the Shroud of Turin. (1-40) Using the legal-historical method of scientific investigation, (27) scholars have established the reliability and accuracy of the ancient manuscripts. (26,27,29,31)

The most extensive and detailed descriptions of the life and death of Jesus are to be found in the New Testament gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. (1) The other 23 books of the New Testament support but do not expand on the details recorded in the gospels. Contemporary Christian, Jewish, and Roman authors provide additional insight concerning the first-century Jewish and Roman legal systems and the details of scourging and crucifixion. (5) Seneca, Livy, Plutarch, and others refer to crucifixion practices in their works. (8,28) Specifically, Jesus (or his crucifixion) is mentioned by the Roman historians Cornelius Tacitus, Pliny the Younger, and Suetonius, by non-Roman historians Thallus and Phlegon, by the satirist Lucian of Samosata, by the Jewish Talmud, and by the Jewish historian Flavius Josephus, although the authenticity of portions of the latter is problematic. (26)

The Shroud of Turin is considered by many to represent the actual burial cloth of Jesus, (22) and several publications concerning the medical aspects of his death draw conclusions from this assumption. (5,11) The Shroud of Turin and recent archaeological findings provide valuable information concerning Roman crucifixion practices. (22-24) The interpretations of modern writers, based on a knowledge of science and medicine not available in the first century, may offer additional insight concerning the possible mechanisms of Jesus' death. (2,17)

When taken in concert, certain facts -- the extensive and early testimony of both Christian proponents and opponents, and their universal acceptance of Jesus as a true historical figure; the ethic of the gospel writers, and the shortness of the time interval between the events and the extant manuscripts; and the confirmation of the gospel accounts by historians and archaeological findings (26,27) -- ensure a reliable testimony from which a modern medical interpretation of Jesus' death may be made.

GETHSEMANE

After Jesus and his disciples had observed the Passover meal in an upper room in a home in southwest Jerusalem, they traveled to the Mount of Olives, northeast of the city. (Owing to various adjustments in the calendar, the years of Jesus' birth and death remain controversial. (29) However, it is likely that Jesus was born in either 4 or 6 BC and died in 30 AD. (11,29) During the Passover observance in 30 AD, the last Supper would have been observed on Thursday, April 6 [Nisan 13], and Jesus would have been crucified on Friday, April 7 [Nisan 14]. (29) ) At nearby Gethsemane, Jesus, apparently knowing that the time of his death was near, suffered great mental anguish, and, as described by the physician Luke, his sweat became like blood. (1)

Although this is a very rare phenomenon, bloody sweat (hematidrosis or hemohidrosis) may occur in highly emotional states or in persons with bleeding disorders. (18,20) As a result of hemorrhage into the sweat glands, the skin becomes fragile and tender. (2,11) Luke's descriptions supports the diagnosis of hematidrosis rather than eccrine chromidrosis (brown or yellow-green sweat) or stigmatization (blood oozing from the palms or elsewhere). (18,21) Although some authors have suggested that hematidrosis produced hypovolemia, we agree with Bucklin (5) that Jesus' actual blood loss probably was minimal. However, in the cold night air, (1) it may have produced chills.

TRIALS

Jewish Trials

Soon after midnight, Jesus was arrested at Gethsemane by the temple officials and was taken first to Annas and then to Caiaphas, the Jewish high priest for that year. (1) Between 1 AM and daybreak, Jesus was tried before Caiaphas and the political Sanhedrin and was found guilty of blasphemy. (1) The guards then blindfolded Jesus, spat on him, and struck him in the face with their fists. (1) Soon after daybreak, presumably at the temple, Jesus was tried before the religious Sanhedrin (with the Pharisees and the Sadducees) and again was found guilty of blasphemy, a crime punishable by death. (1,5)

Roman Trials

Since permission for an execution had to come from the governing Romans, (1) Jesus was taken early in the morning by the temple officials to the Praetorium of the Fortress of Antonia, the residence and governmental seat of Pontius Pilate, the procurator of Judea. However, Jesus was presented to Pilate not as a blasphemer but rather as a self-appointed king who would undermine the Roman authority. (1) Pilate made no charges against Jesus and sent him to Herod Antipas, the tetrarch of Judea. (1) Herod likewise made no official charges and then returned Jesus to Pilate. (1) Again, Pilate could find no basis for a legal charge against Jesus, but the people persistently demanded crucifixion. Pilate finally granted their demand and handed over Jesus to be flogged (scourged) and crucified. (McDowell (25) has reviewed the prevailing political, religious, and economic climates in Jerusalem at the time of Jesus' death, and Bucklin (5) has described the various illegalities of the Jewish and Roman trials.)

Health of Jesus

The rigors of Jesus' ministry (that is, traveling by foot throughout Palestine) would have precluded any major physical illness or a weak general constitution. Accordingly, it is reasonable to assume that Jesus was in good physical condition before his walk to Gethsemane. However, during the 12 hours between 9 PM Thursday and 9 AM Friday, he had suffered great emotional stress (as evidenced by hematidrosis), abandonment by his closest friends (the disciples), and a physical beating (after the first Jewish trial). Also, in the setting of a traumatic and sleepless night, had been forced to walk more than 2.5 miles (4.0 km) to and from the sites of the various trials. These physical and emotional factors may have rendered Jesus particularly vulnerable to the adverse hemodynamic effects of the scourging.

SCOURGING

Scourging Practices

Flogging was a legal preliminary to every Roman execution, (28) and only women and Roman senators or soldiers (except in cases of desertion) were exempt. (11) The usual instrument was a short whip (flagrum or flagellum) with several single or braided leather thongs of variable lengths, in which small iron balls or sharp pieces of sheep bones were tied at intervals. Occasionally, staves also were used. (8,12) For scourging, the man was stripped of his clothing, and his hands were tied to an upright post. (11) The back, buttocks, and legs were flogged either by two soldiers (lictors) or by one who alternated positions. (5,7,11,28) The severity of the scourging depended on the disposition of the lictors and was intended to weaken the victim to a state just short of collapse or death. (8) After the scourging, the soldiers often taunted their victim. (11)

Medical Aspects of Scourging

As the Roman soldiers repeatedly struck the victim's back with full force, the iron balls would cause deep contusions, and the leather thongs and sheep bones would cut into the skin and subcutaneous tissues. (7) Then, as the flogging continued, the lacerations would tear into the underlying skeletal muscles and produce quivering ribbons of bleeding flesh. (27,25) Pain and blood loss generally set the stage for circulatory shock. (12) The extent of blood loss may well have determined how long the victim would survive on the cross. (3)

Scourging of Jesus

At the Praetorium, Jesus was severely whipped. (Although the severity of the scourging is not discussed in the four gospel accounts, it is implied in one of the epistles (1 Peter 2:24). A detailed word study of the ancient Greek text for this verse indicates that the scourging of Jesus was particularly harsh. (33) ) It is not known whether the number of lashes was limited to 39, in accordance with Jewish law. (5) The Roman soldiers, amused that this weakened man had claimed to be a king, began to mock him by placing a robe on his shoulders, a crown of thorns on his head, and a wooden staff as a scepter in his right hand. (1) Next, they spat on Jesus and struck him on the head with the wooden staff. (1) Moreover, when the soldiers tore the robe from Jesus' back, they probably reopened the scourging wounds. (7)

The severe scourging, with its intense pain and appreciable blood loss, most probably left Jesus in a preshock state. Moreover, hematidrosis had rendered his skin particularly tender. The physical and mental abuse meted out by the Jews and the Romans, as well as the lack of food, water, and sleep, also contributed to his generally weakened state. Therefore, even before the actual crucifixion, Jesus' physical condition was at least serious and possibly critical.

CRUCIFIXION

Crucifixion Practices

Crucifixion probably first began among the Persians. (34) Alexander the Great introduced the practice to Egypt and Carthage, and the Romans appear to have learned of it from the Carthaginans. (11) Although the Romans did not invent crucifixion, they perfected it as a form of torture and capital punishment that was designed to produce a slow death with maximum pain and suffering. (10,17) It was one of the most disgraceful and cruel methods of execution and usually was reserved only for slaves, foreigners, revolutionaries, and the vilest of criminals. (3,25,28) Roman law usually protected Roman citizens from crucifixion, (5) except perhaps in the case of desertion by soldiers.

In its earliest form in Persia, the victim was either tied to a tree or was tied to or impaled on an upright post, usually to keep the guilty victim's feet from touching holy ground. (3,11,30,34,38). Only later was a true cross used; it was characterized by an upright post (stipes) and a horizontal crossbar (patibulum), and it had several variations (11). Although archaeological and historical evidence strongly indicates that the low Tau cross was preferred by the Romans in Palestine at the time of Christ, (2,7,11) crucifixion practices often varied in a given geographic region and in accordance with the imagination of the executioners, and the Latin cross and other forms also may have been used. (26)

It was customary for the condemned man to carry his own cross from the flogging post to the site of crucifixion outside the city walls. (8,11,30) He was usually naked, unless this was prohibited by local customs. (11) Since the weight of the entire cross was probably well over 300 lb. (136 kg), only the crossbar was carried. (11) The patibulum, weighing 75 to 125 lb. (34 to 57 kg), (11,30) was placed across the nape of the victim's neck and balanced along both shoulders. Usually, the outstretched arms then were tied to the crossbar. (7,11) The processional to the site of crucifixion was led by a complete Roman military guard, headed by a centurion. (3,11) One of the soldiers carried a sign (titulus) on which the condemned man's name and crime were displayed. (3,11) Later, the titulus would be attached to the top of the cross. (11) The Roman guard would not leave the victim until they were sure of his death. (9,11)

Outside the city walls was permanently located the heavy upright wooden stipes, on which the patibulum would be secured. In the case of the Tau cross, this was accomplished by means of a mortise and tenon joint, with or without reinforcement by ropes. (10,11,30) To prolong the crucifixion process, a horizontal wooden block or plank, serving as a crude seat (sedile or sedulum), often was attached midway down the stipes. (3,11,16) Only very rarely, and probably later than the time of Christ, was an additional block (suppedaneum) employed for transfixion of the feet. (9,11)

At the site of execution, by law, the victim was given a bitter drink of wine mixed with myrrh (gall) as a mild analgesic. (7,17) The criminal was then thrown to the ground on his back, with his arms outstretched along the patibulum. (11) the hands could be nailed or tied to the crossbar, but nailing apparently was preferred by the Romans. (8,11) The archaeological remains of a crucified body, found in an ossuary near Jerusalem and dating from the time of Christ, indicate that the nails were tapered iron spikes approximately 5 to 7 in (13 to 18 cm) long with a square shaft 3/8 in (1 cm) across. (23,24,30) Furthermore, ossuary findings and the Shroud of Turin have documented that the nails commonly were driven through the wrists rather than the palms. (22-24,30)

After both arms were fixed to the crossbar, the patibulum and the victim, together, were lifted onto the stipes. (11) On the low cross, four soldiers could accomplish this relatively easily. However, on the tall cross, the soldiers used either wooden forks or ladders. (11)

Next, the feet were fixed to the cross, either by nails or ropes. Ossuary findings and the Shroud of Turin suggest that nailing was the preferred Roman practice. (23,24,30) Although the feet could be fixed to the sides of the stipes or to a wooden footrest (suppedaneum), they usually were nailed directly to the front of the stipes. (11) To accomplish this, flexion of the knees may have been quite prominent, and the bent legs may have been rotated laterally (23-25,30)

When the nailing was completed, the titulus was attached to the cross, by nails or cords, just above the victim's head. (11) The soldiers and the civilian crowd often taunted and jeered the condemned man, and the soldiers customarily divided up his clothes among themselves. (11,25) The length of survival generally ranged from three or four hours to three or four days and appears to have been inversely related to the severity of the scourging. (3,11) However, even if the scourging had been relatively mild, the Roman soldiers could hasten death by breaking the legs below the knees (crurifragium or skelokopia). (3,11)

Not uncommonly, insects would light upon or burrow into the open wounds or the eyes, ears, and nose of the dying and helpless victim, and birds of prey would tear at these sites. (16) Moreover, it was customary to leave the corpse on the cross to be devoured by predatory animals. (3,11,12,28) However, by Roman law, the family of the condemned could take the body for burial, after obtaining permission from the Roman judge. (11)

Since no one was intended to survive crucifixion, the body was not released to the family until the soldiers were sure that the victim was dead. By custom, one of the Roman guards would pierce the body with a sword or lance. (3,11) Traditionally, this had been considered a spear wound to the heart through the right side of the chest -- a fatal wound probably taught to most Roman soldiers. (11) The Shroud of Turin documents this form of injury. (5,11,22) Moreover, the standard infantry spear, which was 5 to 6 ft (1.5 to 1.8 m) long (30) could easily have reached the chest of a man crucified on the customary low cross. (11)

Medical Aspects of Crucifixion

With a knowledge of both anatomy and ancient crucifixion practices, one may reconstruct the probably medical aspects of this form of slow execution. Each wound apparently was intended to produce intense agony, and the contributing causes of death were numerous.

The scourging prior to crucifixion served to weaken the condemned man and, if blood loss was considerable, to produce orthostatic hypotension and even hypovolemic shock. (8, 12) When the victim was thrown to the ground on his back, in preparation for transfixion of his hands, his scourging wounds most likely would become torn open again and contaminated with dirt. (2,14) Furthermore, with each respiration, the painful scourging wounds would be scraped against the rough wood of the stipes. (7) As a result, blood loss from the back probably would continue throughout the crucifixion ordeal.

With arms outstretched but not taut, the wrists were nailed to the patibulum. (7,11) It has been shown that the ligaments and bones of the wrist can support the weight of a body hanging from them , but the palms cannot. (11) Accordingly, the iron spikes probably were driven between the radius and the carpals or between the two rows of carpal bones, (2,10,11,30) either proximal to or through the strong bandlike flexor retinaculum and the various intercarpal ligaments. Although a nail in either location in the wrist might pass between the bony elements and thereby produce no fractures, the likelihood of painful periosteal injury would seem great. Furthermore, the driven nail would crush or sever the rather large sensorimotor median nerve. (2,7,11) The stimulated nerve would produce excruciating bolts of fiery pain in both arms. (7,9) Although the severed median nerve would result in paralysis of a portion of the hand, ischemic contractures and impalement of various ligaments by the iron spike might produce a clawlike grasp.

Most commonly, the feet were fixed to the front of the stipes by means of an iron spike driven through the first or second intermetatarsal space, just distal to the tarsometatarssal joint. (2,5,8,11,30) It is likely that the deep peroneal nerve and branches of the medial and lateral plantar nerves would have been injured by the nails. Although scourging may have resulted in considerable blood loss, crucifixion per se was a relatively bloodless procedure, since no major arteries, other than perhaps the deep plantar arch, pass through the favored anatomic sites of transfixion. (2,10,11)

The major pathophysiologic effect of crucifixion, beyond the excruciating pain, was a marked interference with normal respiration, particularly exhalation. The weight of the body, pulling down on the outstretched arms and shoulders, would tend to fix the intercostal muscles in an inhalation state and thereby hinder passive exhalation. (2,10,11) Accordingly, exhalation was primarily diaphragmatic, and breathing was shallow. It is likely that this form of respiration would not suffice and that hypercarbia would soon result. The onset of muscle cramps or tetanic contractions, due to fatigue and hypercarbia, would hinder respiration even further. (11)

Adequate exhalation required lifting the body by pushing up on the feet and by flexing the elbows and adducting the shoulders. (2) However, this maneuver would place the entire weight of the body on the tarsals and would produce searing pain. (7) Furthermore, flexion of the elbows would cause rotation of the wrists about the iron nails and cause fiery pain along the damaged median nerves. (7) Lifting of the body would also painfully scrape the scourged back against the rough wooden stipes. (2,7) Muscle cramps and paresthesias of the outstretched and uplifted arms would add to the discomfort. (7) As a result, each respiratory effort would become agonizing and tiring and lead eventually to asphyxia. (2,3,7,10)

The actual cause of death by crucifixion was multifactorial and varied somewhat with each case, but the two most prominent causes probably were hypovolemic shock and exhaustion asphyxia. (2,3,7,10) Other possible contributing factors included dehydration, (7,16) stress-induced arrhythmias, (3) and congestive heart failure with the rapid accumulation of pericardial and perhaps pleural effusions. (2,7,11) Crucifracture (breaking the legs below the knees), if performed, led to an asphyxic death within minutes. (11) Death by crucifixion was, in every sense of the word, excruciating (Latin, excruciatus, or "out of the cross").

Crucifixion of Jesus

After the scourging and the mocking, at about 9 AM, the Roman soldiers put Jesus' clothes back on him and then led him and two thieves to be crucified. (1) Jesus apparently was so weakened by the severe flogging that he could not carry the patibulum from the Praetorium to the site of the crucifixion one third of a mile (600 to 650 m) away (1,3,5,7) Simon of Cyrene was summoned to carry Christ's cross, and the processional then made its way to Golgotha (or Calvary), an established crucifixion site.

Here, Jesus' clothes, except for a linen loincloth, again were removed, thereby probably reopening the scourging wounds. He then was offered a drink of wine mixed with myrrh (gall) but, after tasting it, refused the drink. (1) Finally, Jesus and the two thieves were crucified. Although scriptural references are made to nails in the hands (1), these are not at odds with the archaeological evidence of wrist wounds, since the ancients customarily considered the wrist to be a part of the hand. (7,11) The titulus was attached above Jesus' head. It is unclear whether Jesus was crucified on the Tau cross or the Latin cross; archaeological findings favor the former (11) and early tradition the latter. (38) The fact that Jesus later was offered a drink of wine vinegar from a sponge placed on the stalk of the hyssop plant (1) (approximately 20 in, or 50 cm long) strongly supports the belief that Jesus was crucified on the short cross.

The soldiers and the civilian crowd taunted Jesus throughout the crucifixion ordeal, and the soldiers cast lots for his clothing. (1) Christ spoke seven times from the cross. (1) Since speech occurs during exhalation, these short, terse utterances must have been particularly difficult and painful. At about 3 PM that Friday, Jesus cried out in a loud voice, bowed his head, and died. (1) The Roman soldiers and onlookers recognized his moment of death. (1)

Since the Jews did not want the bodies to remain on the crosses after sunset, the beginning of the Sabbath, they asked Pontius Pilate to order crucifracture to hasten the deaths of the three crucified men. (1) The soldiers broke the legs of the two thieves, but when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. (1) Rather, one of the soldiers pierced his side, probably with an infantry spear, and produced a sudden flow of blood and water. (1) Later that day, Jesus' body was taken down from the cross and placed in a tomb. (1)

DEATH OF JESUS

Two aspects of Jesus' death have been the source of great controversy, namely, the nature of the wound in his side (4,6) and the cause of his death after only several hours on the cross. (13-17).

The gospel of John describes the piercing of Jesus' side and emphasizes the sudden flow of blood and water. (1) Some authors have interpreted the flow of water to be ascites (12) or urine, from an abdominal midline perforation of the bladder. (15) However, the Greek word (pleura (32,35,,36) used by John clearly denoted laterality and often implied the ribs. (6,32,36)

Therefore, it seems probable that the wound was in the thorax and well away from the abdominal midline.

Although the side of the wound was not designated by John, it traditionally has been depicted on the right side. (4) Supporting this traditions is the fact that a large flow of blood would be more likely with a perforation of the distended and thin-walled right atrium or ventricle than the thick-walled and contracted left ventricle. Although the side of the wound may never be established with certainty, the right seems more probable than the left.

Some of the skepticism in accepting John's description has arisen from the difficulty in explaining, with medical accuracy, the flow of both blood and water. Part of this difficulty has been based on the assumption that the blood appeared first, then the water. However, in the ancient Greek, the order of words generally denoted prominence and not necessarily a time sequence. (37) Therefore, it seems likely that John was emphasizing the prominence of blood rather than its appearance preceding the water.

Therefore, the water probably represented serous pleural and pericardial fluid, (5-7,11) and would have preceded the flow of blood and been smaller in volume than the blood. Perhaps in the setting of hypovolemia and impending acute heart failure, pleural and pericardial effusions may have developed and would have added to the volume of apparent water. (5,11) The blood, in contrast, may have originated from the right atrium or the right ventricle or perhaps from a hemopericardium. (5,7,11)

Jesus' death after only three to six hours on the cross surprised even Pontius Pilate. (1) The fact that Jesus cried out in a loud voice and then bowed his head and died suggests the possibility of a catastrophic terminal event. One popular explanation has been that Jesus died of cardiac rupture. In the setting of the scourging and crucifixion, with associated hypovolemia, hypoxemia, and perhaps and altered coagulable state, friable non-infective thrombotic vegetations could have formed on the aortic or mitral valve. These then could have dislodged and embolized into the coronary circulation and thereby produced an acute transmural myocardial infarction. Thrombotic valvular vegetations have been reported to develop under analogous acute traumatic conditions. (39) Rupture of the left ventricular free wall may occur, though uncommonly, in the first few hours following infarction. (40)

However, another explanation may be more likely. Jesus' death may have been hastened simply by his state of exhaustion and by the severity of the scourging, with its resultant blood loss and preshock state. (7) The fact that he could not carry his patibulum supports this interpretation. The actual cause of Jesus' death, like that of other crucified victims, may have been multifactorial and related primarily to hypovolemic shock, exhaustion asphyxia, and perhaps acute heart failure. (2,3,5-7,10,11) A fatal cardiac arrhythmia may have accounted for the apparent catastrophic terminal event.

Thus, it remains unsettled whether Jesus died of cardiac rupture or of cardiorespiratory failure. However, the important feature may be not how he died but rather whether he died. Clearly, the weight of historical and medical evidence indicates that Jesus was dead before the wound to his side was inflicted and supports the traditional view that the spear, thrust between his right ribs, probably perforated not only the right lung but also the pericardium and heart and thereby ensured his death. Accordingly, interpretations based on the assumption that Jesus did not die on the cross appear to be at odds with modern medical knowledge.

References

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32. Hatch E, Redpath HA: "A Concordance to the Septuagint and the Other Greek Versions of the Old Testament (Including the Apocryphal Books) Graz, Austria, Akademische Druce U Verlagsanstalt, 1975, p 1142.

33. Wuest KS: "Wuest Word Studies From the Greek New Testament for the English Reader." Grand Rapids, Mich. WB Eerdmans Publisher, 1973, vol 1, p 280.

34. Friedrich G: "Theological Dictionary of the New Testament", Bremiley G (ed-trans). Grand Rapids, Mich. WB Eerdmans Publisher, 1971, vol 7, pp 572,573,632.

35. Aradt WF, Gingrich FW: "A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature." University of Chicago Press, 1057, p 673.

36. Brown F, Driver SR, Briggs CA: "A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament With an Appendix Containing the Biblical Aramaic." Oxford, England, Clarendon Press, 1953, pp 841, 854.

37. Robertson AT: "A Grammar of the Greek New Testament in Light of Historical Research." Nashville, Tenn, Broadman Press, 1931, pp 417-427.

38. Jackson SM (ed): "The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge." New York, Funk & Wagnalls, 1909, pp 312-314.

39. Kim H-S, Suzuki M, Lie JT, et al: Nonbacterial thrombotic endocarditis (NBTE) and disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC): Autopsy study of 36 patients. "Arch Pathol Lab Med" 1977;101:65-68.

40. Becker AE, van Mantgem J-P: Cardiac tamponade: A study of 50 hearts. "Eur J Cardiol" 1975;3:349-358.


TOPICS: History; Religion & Science
KEYWORDS: crucifixion; easter; historicity; jesus
Originally in the JAMA.

Please go to the link to see illustrations.

1 posted on 04/02/2010 9:31:35 AM PDT by Choose Ye This Day
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To: Choose Ye This Day

I stand all amazed at the love Jesus offers me
Confused at the grace that so fully he proffers me
I tremble to know that for me he was crucified
That for me, a sinner, he suffered, he bled and died

Chorus:
Oh, it is wonderful that he should care for me enough to die for me
Oh, it is wonderful
Wonderful to me

I marvel that he would descend from his throne divine
To rescue a soul so rebellious and proud as mine
That he should extend his great love unto such as I
Sufficient to own, to redeem and to justify

(Repeat chorus)

I think of his hands, pierced and bleeding to pay my debt
Such mercy, such love and devotion can I forget?
No, no, I will praise and adore at the mercy seat
Until at the glorified throne I kneel at his feet


2 posted on 04/02/2010 9:32:23 AM PDT by Choose Ye This Day (If we will not be governed by God, we must be governed by tyrants. -- William Penn)
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To: Choose Ye This Day

bflr


3 posted on 04/02/2010 9:34:54 AM PDT by marvlus
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To: marvlus

It’s a good read, but it takes some time.


4 posted on 04/02/2010 9:37:15 AM PDT by Choose Ye This Day (If we will not be governed by God, we must be governed by tyrants. -- William Penn)
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To: Choose Ye This Day

Check out “The Face of Jesus” on the History Channel. A two-hour fascinating look at the Shroud of Turin.


5 posted on 04/02/2010 9:39:40 AM PDT by marvlus
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To: Choose Ye This Day
Great Hymn.

I especially love this line.

Confused at the grace that so fully he proffers me.

How could a holy God forgive me of the penalty of my horrible, disgusting sins though this simple grace found though the sacrifice and suffering of the atonement! Grace saves me from eternal torment.

These word. Remember them....I tremble to know that for me he was crucified.

6 posted on 04/02/2010 9:40:02 AM PDT by colorcountry (A faith without truth is not true faith.)
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To: Choose Ye This Day

Amen. Look how He suffered, died and rose again for us. Praise His Holy Name.


7 posted on 04/02/2010 9:40:16 AM PDT by brwnsuga (Black and Free!!!)
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To: Choose Ye This Day

“But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, And by His scourging we are healed.” -Isaiah 53:5, NASB


8 posted on 04/02/2010 9:41:31 AM PDT by Fester Chugabrew
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To: Choose Ye This Day

Because He Lives


God sent His son, they called Him Jesus
He came to love, heal, and forgive.
He lived and died to buy my pardon,
An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives.

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.
Because He lives, All fear is gone.
Because I know He holds the future,
And life is worth the living just because He lives.

How sweet to hold a newborn baby,
And feel the pride and joy he gives.
But greater still the calm assurance,
This child can face uncertain days because He lives.

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.
Because He lives, All fear is gone.
Because I know He holds the future,
And life is worth the living just because He lives.

And then one day I’ll cross the river,
I’ll fight life’s final war with pain.
And then as death gives way to victory,
I’ll see the lights of glory and I’ll know He lives.

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.
Because He lives, All fear is gone!
Because I know He holds the future
And life is worth the living just because He lives!


9 posted on 04/02/2010 9:42:39 AM PDT by Chong (How's that HopEy, changEy, (thingEy) stuff working out for ya?)
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To: Chong

I LOVE that old hymn!


10 posted on 04/02/2010 9:51:14 AM PDT by colorcountry (A faith without truth is not true faith.)
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To: Choose Ye This Day
Hear is a new hymn. This video makes me weep.

Amazin Love

11 posted on 04/02/2010 9:53:23 AM PDT by colorcountry (A faith without truth is not true faith.)
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To: colorcountry

That’s very powerful. Time to watch The Passion again.


12 posted on 04/02/2010 9:59:59 AM PDT by Choose Ye This Day (If we will not be governed by God, we must be governed by tyrants. -- William Penn)
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To: Chong

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQBBihRwP8o


13 posted on 04/02/2010 10:01:29 AM PDT by Choose Ye This Day (If we will not be governed by God, we must be governed by tyrants. -- William Penn)
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To: brwnsuga

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZAJYMK0dy8M

I know that my Redeemer lives!
What comfort this sweet sentence gives!
He lives, he lives, who once was dead;
He lives, my ever living head!

He lives triumphant from the grave;
He lives eternally to save;
He lives exalted, throned above;
He lives to rule his Church in love.

He lives to grant me rich supply;
He lives to guide me with his eye;
He lives to comfort me when faint;
He lives to hear my soul’s complaint.

He lives to silence all my fears;
He lives to wipe away my tears;
He lives to calm my troubled heart;
He lives all blessings to impart.

He lives to bless me with his love;
He lives to plead for me above;
He lives my hungry soul to feed;
He lives to help in time of need.

He lives, my kind, wise, heavenly friend;
He lives and loves me to the end;
He lives, and while he lives, I’ll sing;
He lives, my Prophet, Priest, and King!

He lives and grants me daily breath;
He lives, and I shall conquer death;
He lives my mansion to prepare;
He lives to bring me safely there.

He lives, all glory to his name!
He lives, my savior, still the same;
What joy this blest assurance gives:
I know that my Redeemer lives!


14 posted on 04/02/2010 10:05:39 AM PDT by Choose Ye This Day (If we will not be governed by God, we must be governed by tyrants. -- William Penn)
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To: Choose Ye This Day

Good Read — Bookmarked


15 posted on 04/02/2010 10:06:27 AM PDT by Uncle Chip (TRUTH : Ignore it. Deride it. Allegorize it. Interpret it. But you can't ESCAPE it.)
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To: Choose Ye This Day

Were You There When They Crucified My Lord?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zs_Zu1mzy2k&feature=fvw

(the inimitable Johnny Cash)

Were you there when they crucified my Lord
Oh were you there when they crucified my Lord
(Oooh sometimes it causes me to tremble) tremble

Were you there when they crucified my Lord
Were you there when they nailed him to the cross
Were you there when they nailed him to the cross
(Oooh sometimes it causes me to tremble) tremble
Were you there when they nailed him to the cross

[Acoustic guitar instrumental]

(Were you there when they laid him in the tomb
Were you there when they laid him in the tomb
Oooh sometimes it causes me to tremble) tremble

Were you there when they laid him in the tomb
Well were you there when the stone was rolled away
Were you there when the stone was rolled away
(Oooh sometimes it causes me to tremble) tremble
Were you there when the stone was rolled away


16 posted on 04/02/2010 10:17:21 AM PDT by Choose Ye This Day (If we will not be governed by God, we must be governed by tyrants. -- William Penn)
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To: Choose Ye This Day

With Jesus being fully man and fully God — while we can discuss the human part (like in this article) — it’s only the “God part” of Jesus (which has no measurement capabilities to it) — that makes Salvation at all possible and the “payment for sins” — efficacious.

I mean, the Bible says that a man can only die for one man’s sins — and so if Jesus was merely “man” who died and was raised from the dead, He could not pay for the sins of many.

It’s only because of His unlimited nature, as part of the Godhead, the Trinity — that makes this possible.

The “real part of Salvation” is the totally unseen part, in which He is part of the Godhead, the Trinity.


17 posted on 04/02/2010 10:26:26 AM PDT by Star Traveler (Remember to keep the Messiah of Israel in the One-World Government that we look forward to coming)
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To: Choose Ye This Day
Jesus is also the Lamb of God, and this explains Passover, as to how that works into the plan of Salvation...

The following is about the Passover and how Jesus' Ministry was fulfilling the prophetic message of the "Seven Festivals" in Israel that Jews observed (and do observe).

It's from a work called "The Seven Festivals of the Messiah" ...



This is my post from almost ten years ago, here on Free Republic, about "The Seven Festivals of the Messiah"

The link works sometimes for me, but most of the time, it won't work on Free Republic (something about this post being too far back and before Free Republic changed the way posts were made). So, you may get it if you repeatedly hit refresh (as I have done before) and maybe not. But, the following is that post from about ten years ago...

This is a "chart overview" of The Seven Festivals of the Messiah ...

HISTORICAL APPLICATION OF THE FEASTS

FEAST                   HISTORICAL APSECT

1. Passover             Israel's deliverance out of Egyptian bondage

2. Unleavened Bread     The going out of Egypt

3. First Fruits         Crossing the Red Sea

4. Pentecost            Giving the Commandments at Mount Sinai

5. Rosh HaShanah        Blowing the 'Shofar' (trumpet)
  (Feast of Trumpets)   Jewish New Year

6. Day of Atonement     Priest entered the Holy of Holies
                        Cleansing of the people's sins

7. Tabernacles          Entering the Promised Land/Great Rejoicing


MESSIANIC APPLICATION OF THE FEASTS

FEAST                   MESSIANIC FULFILLMENT

1. Passover             Death of Christ on the Cross (tree)

2. Unleavened Bread     The burial of Jesus

3. First Fruits         The resurrection of Jesus

4. Pentecost            Pouring out of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2)

5. Rosh HaShanah        The resurrection of the dead/
  (Feast of Trumpets)   Rapture of the believers

6. Day of Atonement     The day of Christ's Second Coming

7. Tabernacles          The Messianic Era/Millennium


SPIRITUAL APPLICATION OF THE FEASTS

FEAST                   SPIRITUAL APPLICATION

1. Passover             Repent and trust by faith in
                        the shed blood of Jesus

2. Unleavened Bread     Sanctification and separation from evil
                        represented by water immersion (baptism)

3. First Fruits         Walking in newness of life

4. Pentecost            Immersion (baptism) in the Holy Spirit
                        and faith in God

5. Rosh HaShanah        Hear the calling (shofar (trumet)) of
  (Feast of Trumpets)   God for our lives

6. Day of Atonement     Yielding ourselves to God so that we may
                        live (face to face) in His Presence

7. Tabernacles          A daily rest in the Messiah and having the
                        rest of His Kingdom in our hearts


SIGNIFICANCE IN BRIEF

1. Passover             Reminds us that God is the forgiver of sin who
                        grants us eternal life in His Kingdom through
                        the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, our Passover

2. Unleavened Bread     Depicts putting sin out of our lives

3. First Fruits         Christ, the firstfruits risen from the dead,
                        afterward, those who are Christ's at His Coming

4. Pentecost            Serves to remind us that our Creator still works
                        miracles, empowering us to carry out His work
                        in this world

5. Rosh HaShanah        Looks forward to the return of Jesus Christ
  (Feast of Trumpets)   (rapture of the Church), and to the resurrection
                        of the "dead in Christ" -the hope of Christians

6. Day of Atonement     Pictures the loving reconciliation we have with
                        God, made possible through Christ's sacrifice
                        It also shows the remarkable truth that Satan
                        will eventually be removed so that humanity can
                        at last attain reconciliation with God on a
                        universal basis

7. Tabernacles          Represents the Millenium, the reign of Christ on
                        Earth for 1,000 years of true happiness and
                        utopia


AND, the following is my original post from ten years ago...



The Seven Festivals Of The Messiah

Culture/Society Keywords: JEWISH FESTIVALS MESSIAH JESUS CHRIST
Author: Eddie Chumney
Posted on 10/08/2000 01:39:38 PDT by Star Traveler

The following is from a series of e-mails sent out about the "Seven Feasts of the Messiah" by Eddie Chumney. This posting here is in connection with a previous Free Republic posting regarding a Jerusalem Post opinion article.

http://www.jpost.com/Editions/2000/10/06/Opinion/Opinion.13368.html

The Free Republic posting of the above article is here --

http://www.FreeRepublic.com/forum/a39dfa12f6cd2.htm

And below are the series of the Seven Feasts of the Lord, which figures very closely into what is happening in the Middle East with the Arabs and the Jews, that is -- if you think that God has anything to do with the world situation and Israel.

What is shown here is how the seven Feasts of the Lord, are fulfilled in the ministry of Jesus Christ, throughout the course of the history of the world. The first four Feasts have been fulfilled, up through the Feast of Weeks, or Pentecost. The next one to be fufilled is the Feast of Trumpets, related to the Rapture. And then in quick succession comes the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur) and the Feast of Tabernacles (the Millennial Reign of Christ).

1 Posted on 10/08/2000 01:39:38 PDT by Star Traveler (aldebaran6640@hotmail.com)
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The Feasts of the Lord--Part I

FEASTS OF THE LORD      (most of the following study is taken from The
                         Seven Feasts of the Messiah by Eddie Chumney)


HEBREW NAME             ENGLISH NAME            TIME OF OBSERVANCE

1. Pesach               Passover                Nisan 14

2. Hag HaMatzah         Feast of                Nisan 15-21
                        Unleavened Bread

3. Bikkurim             First Fruits (of        The morrow after the
                        the Barley Harvest)     sabbath during
                                                Hag HaMatzah

4. Shavout              Feast of Weeks/         Fifty days from the
                        Pentecost               Feast of First Fruits

5. Yom Teruah           Feast of Trumpets       Tishrei 1
  (Rosh HaShanah)

6. Yom Kippur           Day of Atonement        Tishrei 10

7. Sukkot               Feast of Tabernacles/   Tishrei 15-21
                        Booths


THE APPOINTED FEASTS

The Festivals of the Lord found in Leviticus, chapter 23, were given to
us by God so His people could understand the coining of the Messiah and
the role that the Messiah would play in redeeming and restoring both man
and the earth back to God following the fall of Man in the Garden of
Eden.

The Festivals are divided into two major portions, depending upon
whether they occur in the spring or the fall.  The Spring Festivals
teach about the First Coming of the Messiah, and the Fall Festivals
teach about the Second Coming of the Messiah.  During the course of the
year, the rains come in Israel at two primary times - the spring and the
fall.  In Hosea 6:3 we read- "...His going forth is established as the
morning; He will come to us like the rain, like the latter and former
rain to the earth."  The "latter and former rain" in this passage is
commonly interpreted and understood to be the coming of the Holy Spirit.
The "former and latter" rain also refers to the First and Second Coming
of the Messiah.  The Hebrew word for the former rain, found also in Joel
2:23, is 'moreh', which means "teacher".  Jesus, the teacher, was sent
by God to the earth to faithfully teach us righteousness, just as God
faithfully sends us the rain. (Isaiah 55:10-11)  The harvest (believers
in Christ) is the product that the rain (Jesus) produces.

The Apostle Paul, in Colossians 2:16-17 refers to the Feasts as a
"shadow of things to come."  The first four Feasts or Festivals, which
are Passover, Unleavened Bread, First Fruits, and Pentecost, primarily
teach about the significant events in the First Coming of the Messiah
and why these events were an important part of God's redemption of man.

The last three Feasts, which are the Feast of Trumpets (Yom Teruah) also
known as Rosh HaShanah, the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur), and the Feast
of Tabernacles or Booths (Sukkot), give us a fascinating insight
concerning important events that surrond the Second Coming of the
Messiah.  God gave the Festivals to teach about the death, burial, and
resurrection of the Messiah, the empowering of the believers by the Holy
Spirit, the resurrection of the dead, the coronation of the Messiah, the
wedding of the Messiah (which we have already outlined in a previous
study, but will include portions here as well), the Millennium, and much
more.

The Bible also provides some powerful reasons for studying and
understanding the Seven Festivals of the Messiah:

-The Feasts are in the Bible, and all the Bible is inspired by God.
 (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

-The Feasts are a shadow of things to come that teach us about the
Messiah.  (Colossians 2:16-17, Hebrews 10:1)


-God gave the Feasts so we could learn and understand God's plan of
redemption for the world and our personal relationship to Him.
 (Romans 15:4)


THE BIBLICAL CALENDAR AND THEIR MONTH OF THE YEAR

                                        MONTH OF        MONTH OF
NAMES OF MONTH          OUR MONTH       CIVIL YEAR      SACRED YEAR

Tishrei                 Sep             1st             7th

Cheshvan                Oct             2nd             8th

Kislev                  Nov             3rd             9th

Tevet                   Dec             4th             10th

Shevat                  Jan             5th             11th

Adar                    Feb             6th             12th

Nisan (Aviv)            Mar             7th             1st

Iyar                    Apr             8th             2nd

Sivan                   May             9th             3rd

Tammuz                  June            10th            4th

Av                      July            11th            5th

Elul                    Aug             12th            6th


To fully understand the Feasts being appointed times given by God, it is
important to understand the Biblical Calendar that God gave to us.
There are two primary calendars in the Bible.  The first one is called
the Civil Calendar and is used from Genesis 1:1 to Exodus 12.  The first
month in the Civil Calendar is Tishrei.  Rosh HaShanah, or the Jewish
New Year, the first day in the Civil Calendar, is the beginning of the
New Year.  The second calendar in the Bible is the Religious Calendar.
The Religious Calendar is used from Exodus 12 to Revelation 22.  God
established the Religious Calendar in Exodus 12:2- "This month shall be
your beginning of months; it shall be the first month of the year to
you."  The month that God was referring to was the month which is called
Nisan.  Prior to God establishing the month of Nisan as the first month
in the Religious Calendar, Nisan was the seventh month in the Civil
Calendar.  God gave the Religious Calendar so that we could understand
that these Feasts, which He gave and which are His appointed times and
foreshadow important events in redemption, would happen on the days He
ordained on the Religious Calendar.  These important days on the
Religious Calendar are the same days that He gave as Festivals in
Leviticus, chapter 23.


HISTORICAL APPLICATION OF THE FEASTS

FEAST                   HISTORICAL APSECT

1. Passover             Israel's deliverance out of Egyptian bondage

2. Unleavened Bread     The going out of Egypt

3. First Fruits         Crossing the Red Sea

4. Pentecost            Giving the Commandments at Mount Sinai

5. Rosh HaShanah        Blowing the 'Shofar' (trumpet)
  (Feast of Trumpets)   Jewish New Year

6. Day of Atonement     Priest entered the Holy of Holies
                        Cleansing of the people's sins

7. Tabernacles          Entering the Promised Land/Great Rejoicing


MESSIANIC APPLICATION OF THE FEASTS

FEAST                   MESSIANIC FULFILLMENT

1. Passover             Death of Christ on the Cross (tree)

2. Unleavened Bread     The burial of Jesus

3. First Fruits         The resurrection of Jesus

4. Pentecost            Pouring out of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2)

5. Rosh HaShanah        The resurrection of the dead/
  (Feast of Trumpets)   Rapture of the believers

6. Day of Atonement     The day of Christ's Second Coming

7. Tabernacles          The Messianic Era/Millennium


SPIRITUAL APPLICATION OF THE FEASTS

FEAST                   SPIRITUAL APPLICATION

1. Passover             Repent and trust by faith in
                        the shed blood of Jesus

2. Unleavened Bread     Sanctification and separation from evil
                        represented by water immersion (baptism)

3. First Fruits         Walking in newness of life

4. Pentecost            Immersion (baptism) in the Holy Spirit
                        and faith in God

5. Rosh HaShanah        Hear the calling (shofar (trumet)) of
  (Feast of Trumpets)   God for our lives

6. Day of Atonement     Yielding ourselves to God so that we may
                        live (face to face) in His Presence

7. Tabernacles          A daily rest in the Messiah and having the
                        rest of His Kingdom in our hearts


SIGNIFICANCE IN BRIEF

1. Passover             Reminds us that God is the forgiver of sin who
                        grants us eternal life in His Kingdom through
                        the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, our Passover

2. Unleavened Bread     Depicts putting sin out of our lives

3. First Fruits         Christ, the firstfruits risen from the dead,
                        afterward, those who are Christ's at His Coming

4. Pentecost            Serves to remind us that our Creator still works
                        miracles, empowering us to carry out His work
                        in this world

5. Rosh HaShanah        Looks forward to the return of Jesus Christ
  (Feast of Trumpets)   (rapture of the Church), and to the resurrection
                        of the "dead in Christ" -the hope of Christians

6. Day of Atonement     Pictures the loving reconciliation we have with
                        God, made possible through Christ's sacrifice
                        It also shows the remarkable truth that Satan
                        will eventually be removed so that humanity can
                        at last attain reconciliation with God on a
                        universal basis

7. Tabernacles          Represents the Millenium, the reign of Christ on
                        Earth for 1,000 years of true happiness and
                        utopia


OVERVIEW OF THE SPRING FESTIVALS

The four Spring Festivals are Passover, Unleavened Bread, First Fruits,
and the Feast of Weeks or Pentecost.

These four Spring Festivals are joined together as an interrelated unit.
The Feast of Weeks is considered the conclusion to Passover.  The season
of Passover is not considered totally over until Pentecost is completed.

Passover begins in Egypt (a type of the world), where the children of
Israel had become slaves.  In the days of Joseph, there was a famine in
Israel and the children of Israel went down to Egypt and gave themselves
to rulership under Pharoah.  Because of this, Pharoah had legal
ownership over the people.  This ownership could be broken only by the
death of Pharoah, thus freeing the children of Israel to go to the
Promised Land.  When Pharoah died, his rulership over the children of
Israel was legally broken and the people were free to go to the Promised
Land.

Spiritually speaking, Pharoah is a type of Satan.  Until you accept
Jesus into your life, Satan has legal ownership over you.  By the death
of Jesus, the legal ownership that Satan has over our lives is broken
and we are free to enter into the spiritual promised land of God and
receive all the promises that He has promised to us.

From the crossing of the Red Sea (Nisan 17) to the day Moses met God on
Mount Sinai were 47 days.  For 47 days the children of Israel traveled
through the wilderness before they came to Mount Sinai on the third day
of the third month. (Exodus 19:1)  God instructed the people through
Moses to sanctify themselves before He visited them three days later on
Mount Sinai, which would be the sixth day of the third month. (Exodus
19:10-11)  This day would be the fiftieth day following the crossing of
the Red Sea.  It came to be known as the revelation of God at Mount
Sinai.  This day, being the fiftieth day from the crossing of the Red
Sea on Nisan 17 would be the Feast of Weeks or Pentecost.

From the Exodus story, we can see that the Lamb was slain on the
fourteenth of Nisan, the day of Passover.  On the fifteenth of Nisan,
the day of Unleavened Bread, the people left Egypt. On the seventeenth
of Nisan the children of Israel crossed the Red Sea, and 50 days later
on the Feast of Weeks or Pentecost, God gave Moses the Commandments.

In the studies of the Feasts that will follow, we will see how Jesus
died on Passover (Nisan 14), was in the sepulcher on the day of
Unleavened Bread (Nisan 15), and was resurrected on the day of First
Fruits (Nisan 17), and the Holy Spirit empowered the believers 50 days
following Jesus resurrection on the day of Pentecost.  We will also
learn what these Feasts mean to the believer and how they relate to our
personal relationship with God.


OVERVIEW OF THE FALL FESTIVALS

The Fall Festival season begins with a 40 day period called, in Hebrew,
'Teshuvah', which means "to repent or return".  This 40 day period
begins in the sixth month of the Religious Calendar, and concludes on
the tenth day of the seventh month, which is Yom Kippur, the Day of
Atonement.  Each morning in the synagogue following the morning prayers,
a trumpet (shofar) is blown (except on sabbaths and the day preceding
Rosh HaShanah, the Feast of Trumpets). The Biblical name for Rosh
HaShanah is Yom Terah, which means "the day of the awakening blast".  We
call it the Feast of Trumpets.  God gave us this day to teach us about
the resurrection of the dead, the coronation of the Messiah, the wedding
of the Messiah, and more.  This day is both the Jewish New Year and the
beginning of a period of soul searching known as the High Holy Days,
culminating on Yom Kippur.  Therefore, the last 10 days of the 40 day
period of Teshuvah or repentance, is also called the high Holy Days.

The first and second days of the 10 High Holy Days (Tishrei 1-10) are
collectively known as one day. (Nehemiah 8:1-2,13)  The seven day period
from Tishrei 3 through Tishrei 9 is called the Days of Awe or the
Awesome Days.  God gave these special days on His calendar to teach us
about the future tribulation period on earth.  These seven days will
correspond to the seven years of the tribulation, known in Hebrew as the
"birthpangs of the Messiah".

Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement is observed on the tenth day of the
seventh month. (Leviticus 23:26-32)  Since Rosh HaShanah teaches us
about the resurrection of the dead, the coronation of the Messiah and
the wedding of the Messiah, and the Days of Awe teach us about the
tribulation, Yom Kippur teaches us about the literal Second Coming of
the Messiah when He will set His foot down of the Mount of Olives.
(Zechariah 14:4)

The Feast of Tabernacles is observed the fifteenth day of the seventh
month of Tishrei to the twenty first day.  This Festival teaches us the
joy of the Messianic Kingdom or the Millennium.

There are four important aspects to remember when dealing with each of
the seven Great Festivals of the Lord:

1.  All of the Festivals are, at the same time, both historical and
prophetic.

2.  All of the Festivals teach about the Messiah, or Jesus.

3.  All of the Festivals are agricultural in context.

4.  All of the Festivals teach about your personal relationship with
God and how you are to walk with Him as you grow in the knowledge
of Him, from being a baby believer to a mature believer.


THE MEANING OF THE WORD "FEAST" IN THE BIBLE

There are two important Hebrew words that appear in Leviticus, chapter
23, and each word is translated as 'feast' in English.  In verse 2, the
word for feast is the Hebrew word 'mo'ed'- "Speak unto the children of
Israel, and say unto them, concerning the feasts (mo'ed) of the Lord..."
The word 'mo'ed' means an appointment, a fixed time or season, a cycle
or year, an assembly, an appointed time, a set time or exact time.  By
understanding the Hebrew meaning of the English word "feast", we can see
that God is telling us that He is ordaining a "set time or exact time or
an appointed time" when He has an appointment with humanity to fulfill
certain events in the redemption.  Jesus came to earth at the exact time
ordained by God as Paul wrote in Galations 4:4, and God has an exact
time or set appointment when, in the future, He will judge the world as
written in Acts 17:31.

In verse 6 is another Hebrew word translated as "feast"- "And on the
fifteenth day of the same month is the feast (chag) of unleavened
bread..."  The Hebrew word 'chag', which means a "festival", is derived
from the Hebrew root word 'chagag', which means to move in a circle, to
march in a sacred procession, to celebrate, dance, to hold a solemn
feast or holiday.  God gave the Festivals as cycles to be observed
yearly so that, by doing them, we can understand God's redemptive plan
for the world, the role that the Messiah would play in that redemption,
and our personal relationship to God concerning how we grow from a baby
Bible believer to a mature Bible believer.


THREE TIMES A YEAR THEY WERE TO ASSEMBLE

There are a total of seven Feasts (the divine number for perfection or
completeness in the Bible).  God divided the seven Festivals into three
major Festival seasons.  The Feast of Passover, Unleavened Bread, and
First Fruits are in the Hebrew month of Nisan, which is the first month
of God's Religious Calendar in the spring of the year.  The Feast of
Weeks, or Pentecost, is observed in the third month which is the Hebrew
month of Sivan.  The Feasts of Trumpets, Atonement, and Tabernacles are
observed in the seventh month of Tishrei, which is in the fall of the
year.  Three is the number of complete and perfect testimony and
witness. (2 Corinthians 13:1, 1 John 5:8)  So the Feasts are a witness
to God's divine plan and the role of Messiah fulfilling that plan.


UNDERSTANDING THE FEASTS

In Leviticus 23:2 it is written, "...the feasts of the Lord, which ye
shall proclaim to be holy convocations..."  The Hebrew term translated
as convocation in Leviticus 23:2,4 is 'miqra', which means "a
rehearsal".  God gave the Festivals to be yearly "rehearsals" of the
future events in the redemption.  Because God gave the "rehearsals" to
teach us about the major events in the redemption, if we want to
understand those events, then we need to understand what God was
teaching us by these rehearsals.  We will do this in the study as we get
into the Feasts themselves.



The Feasts of the Lord--Part II


THE PASSOVER

The Feast of Passover was given by God to be a rehearsal of the First
Coming of Jesus Christ.

Jesus' sacrifice is the pivotal event in God's plan to save humanity.
Speaking of His certain death, Christ said that He, as the Son of Man,
must be "lifted up" (crucified) even as "Moses lifted up the serpent in
the wilderness," so that "whoever believes in Him should not perish but
have eternal life."

We see here that Jesus' sacrifice, the central message of the Passover,
was a supreme act of love for humanity.  This important event laid the
foundation for the remaining annual Holy Days and Festivals.  It is the
most momentous step in God's plan.

The Passover in the Old Testament foreshadowed Christ's crucifixion.

God declared Passover to be a permanent celebration for all eternity.
(Exodus 12:13-14)  Historically, Passover celebrates God's deliverance
of the children of Israel from bondage in Egypt, where they were slaves
to the Egyptians (Exodus 6:5-8, 13:3,14).

The spiritual application that God wants us to understand can be seen as
this:  Egypt is a type of the world and the world's system.  Its ruler,
Pharoah, was a type of satan.  The bondage people are in when they live
according to the ways of the world's system is sin (John 8:34).

Historically, the children of Israel were delivered from the bondage in
Egypt by putting the blood of a lamb upon the doorposts of their houses
(Exodus 12:13).  Spiritually, this is a picture of Jesus and how those
who believe in Him are delivered from the bondages of sin and the rule
of satan in their lives.  Jesus is the Lamb of God (John 1:29).  Jesus
is also our Passover (1 Corinthians 5:7).  Those who follow Christ are
the house of God (Hebrews 3:6).  The doorposts are our hearts.  It is
only through trusting by faith in the shed blood of Christ, our
Passover, that we are free from the bondage of sin (Galatians 5:1).
This is because the blood of Christ redeems us from sin (Leviticus
17:11, Ehesians 1:7, Colossians 1:14, 1 Peter 1:18-19, 1 John 1:7,
Revelation 1:5)

During Passover, the head of each household was to take a lamb of the
first year on the tenth day of the first month known as Nisan and set it
aside until the fourteenth day (Exodus 12:3-6).  In the evening of the
fourteenth day, at exactly 3:00 p.m., the lamb was to be killed (Exodus
12:6)  The blood of the lamb was to be sprinkled on the lintel and two
side posts of the household door.  The lamb was to be roasted with fire,
with bitter herbs, and with unleavened bread, and the entire household
was to feast upon the body of the lamb (Exodus 12:7-8).  The people were
instructed by God to eat the lamb with haste and to be dressed and ready
to leave Egypt at the midnight hour.  This would be the fifteenth day of
Nisan (Exodus 12:10-11).

At midnight on that fateful evening in Egypt, the death angel passed
through the land.  Every house tht did not have the token of the blood
on the doorposts and lintel suffered the judgment of God (Exodus
12:12-15).  The Hebrew word for Passover is 'Pesach', which means "to
pass or hover over."  This word speaks to us about two things.  First,
it shows the passing over in judgment from death and sin to life in
Jesus.  Second, it tells us about allowing, by faith, the blood of Jesus
to hover over our lives and give us divine protection from the evil one.


GOD'S COMMANDMENTS FOR PASSOVER

Exodus 12:

vs.2--This month shall be unto you the beginning of months: it shall be
the first month of the year to you

vs.3--Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth
day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to
the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house

vs4.--And if the household be too little for the lamb, let him and his
neighbour next unto his house take it according to the number of the
souls; every man according to his eating shall make your count for the
lamb

vs5.--Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye
shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats

vs.6--And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same
month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill
it in the evening

vs.7--And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side
posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat
it

vs.8--And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and
unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it

vs.9--Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with
fire; his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof

vs.10--And ye shall let nothing remain until the morning; and that which
remaineth of it until the morning ye shall burn with fire

vs.11--And thus shall ye eat it; with your loins girded, your shoes on
your feet, and your staff in your hand; and ye shall eat it in haste: it
is the Lord's passover

vs.12--For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will
smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and
against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the Lord.


PASSOVER WAS THE BEGINNING OF MONTHS (vs.2)

Nisan is the first month of the Religious Calendar.  When we receive
Jesus into our lives it is the beginning of a New Covenant relationship
with God (Jeremiah 31:31-33, 2 Corinthians 5:17).  Passover is the first
of the Feasts.  Likewise, repenting of our sins and believing in the
shed blood of Jesus is the first step in our walk with God.

THE LAMB WAS HIDDEN FOR FOUR DAYS (vs.3,6)

God commanded Israel to take a lamb on the tenth day of Nisan and set it
aside until the fourteenth day.  These four days were fulfilled by Jesus
during the Passover week.  Remember, Jesus is the Lamb of God (John
1:29).  He entered Jerusalem and went to the temple, which was the house
of God, and went on public display there for four days from Nisan 10 to
Nisan 14 (Matthew chapters 21-26).

In eschatology, the study of last days, these four days that the lamb
was hidden is prophetic of the people's expectations that the Messiah
would come 4,000 years from the creation of Adam as part of the 7,000
year plan of God to redeem both man and the earth back to how things
were in the Garden of Eden.  These four days are prophetic of the
Messiah being hid from the world and not coming to earth for four days
or 4,000 years from the creation of Adam.  A day is understood to be
prophetic of a thousand years, based upon Psalm 90:4 and 2 Peter 3:8.
Linking Psalm 90:4 to each day in creation, God ordained each day in
creation to be prophetic of a thousand years of time and the entire
redemption to take 7,000 years to complete from the fall of man in the
Garden of Eden (Genesis 1:1,5,8,13,19,23,31, 2:1-3).

THE LAMB WAS TO BE WITHOUT BLEMISH (vs.5)

Jesus was the Lamb of God (John 1:29) without spot or blemish (1 Peter
1:18-20).

THE LAMB WAS OF THE FIRST YEAR (vs.5)

Jesus was the firstborn of Mary naturally (Matthew 1:21-25), and the
firstborn of God spiritually (Colossians 1:15).

IT IS A MALE (vs.5)

It was through one man's sin that sin came into the world (Romans 5:12).
Because Adam, the firt male, sinned, so a male, Jesus, must die to atone
for tht sin (Romans 5:17-19)

IT IS A LAMB FOR A HOUSE (vs.3-4)

God's intention was that all (households) experience salvation.  The
lamb was a lamb for the house.  By believing in the Lord Jesus, we
become members of the household of faith (Ephesians 2:19).  Salvation
for a household is available to all who believe in the Messiah, the Lamb
of God (Genesis 7:1, Joshua 24:15, John 4:46-53, Luke 19:5-10, Acts
16:31, 18:8).

There is a progressive revelation of the Lamb in the Bible.  First,
there is a lamb for a house (Exodus 12:3-4) second, a lamb for a nation
(John 11:49-52) and finally, a lamb for the world (John 1:29).

A PASSOVER LAMB WAS TO BE KILLED IN THE EVENING (vs.6)
('evening' translated as twilight or between the evenings)

The Biblical day goes from evening to evening, from sundown to sundown,
which is roughly 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. (Genesis 1:5)
The day (6:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.) is divided into two 12-hour periods.
-The evening runs from 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.
-The morning runs from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
-Each 12-hour period is divided into two smaller portions.
-From 6:00 a.m. to noon is the morning part of the day.
-From noon to 6:00 p.m. is the evening part of the day.
The phrase, "between the evening" (vs.6) refers to the period of the day
that goes from noon to 6:00 p.m., which is exactly 3:00 p.m.  This would
be the ninth hour of the day, counting from 6:00 a.m.

Jesus died at the ninth hour of the day (Matthew 27:45-50).  This would
be 3:00 p.m., the ninth hour, counting from 6:00 a.m.

THE WHOLE ASSEMBLY SHALL KILL IT (vs.6)

Every person who has ever lived on planet Earth and sinned is guilty of
killing Jesus because He died for all sinners (Romans 3:10,23).

A whole congregation of people was involved in the death of Jesus.  The
Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John show how the Sanhedrin, the
priests, the Romans, and the people of Israel all clamored for the
crucifixion of Jesus and for His blood to be shed (Acts 4:26-28).

THE BLOOD MUST BE APPLIED TO THE DOOR (vs.7)

Those who believe in the Lord Jesus are the house of God (Hebrews 3:6).
The only way into the house of God is through the shed blood of Christ,
who is the Door (John 10:7-9).

THE BODY OF THE LAMB MUST BE EATEN (vs. 8-10)

Both the body and blood of the lamb speak of the body and blood of
Christ (Matthew 26:26-28).  We spiritually eat of the body of the Lamb
when we eat of His body (today represented by the bread).

IT MUST BE EATEN THE SAME NIGHT (vs.8)

Jesus was crucified, suffered, and died the same night.

IT MUST BE EATEN WITH UNLEAVENED BREAD (vs. 8)

Leaven speaks of sin (1 Corinthians 5:6-8).  Unleavened bread is without
sin.  As believers, we are instructed to live holy (unleavened) lives
before God (Leviticus 19:2, 1 Peter 1:15-16).

IT MUST BE EATEN WITH BITTER HERBS (vs. 8)

To those who have accepted Jesus into their lives, bitter herbs speak of
the bondage and burdens we experience while living in this world ( a
type of Egypt) before we accepted Jesus into our lives.  This burden of
sin is placed on us by satan when we yield to his lies and deception,
and then sin because of our own evil desires.

For Christ, dying on the cross was a bitter experience because He had to
pay for man's sin with His sinless life.

THE LAMB MUST BE ROASTED IN FIRE (vs.8)

Fire speaks of judgment, refining, and purification.  Our faith is
judged and tested by fire so it can be refined and purified and come
forth as pure gold (Zechariah 13:9, James 1:12, 1 Peter 1:7).

IT MUST NOT BE SODDEN WITH WATER (vs.9)

The Gospel of Jesus must not be watered down (Mark 7:9,13).

THE HEAD, LEGS, AND OTHER PARTS OF THE LAMB MUST BE EATEN (vs.9)

Those who believe in the Lord Jesus must feed on the mind of Christ
(Philippians 2:5, 1 Corinthians 2:16, Romans 12:2, Ephesians 4:21-23,
Hebrews 8:10).  The legs speak of our walk (Colossians 2:6).  How are
we, the believers in Christ to walk?  See, Romans 6:4, 8:1,4, 2
Corinthians 5:7, Galations 5:16, Ephesians 5:2,8, Colossians 1:10, 4:5,
1 Thessalonians 4:1, 1 John 1:7, and 2 John vs.6.

THE LAMB MUST BE EATEN IN HASTE (vs.11)

Bible believers must be quick to leave Egypt (the influences of the
world) and run toward the life that is in the Savior, Jesus Christ (Luke
19:5-6).

IT MUST BE EATEN WITH OUR LOINS GIRDED (vs.11)

Our loins being girded speaks about our hearts desire to eagerly serve
and obey God.  Our spiritual loins are the truth of the Word of God
(Ephesians 6:14).  There are other Scriptures that speak about our loins
being girded.  They are- 1 Kings 18:46, Luke 12:35 and 1 Peter 1:13.

SHOES MUST BE ON OUR FEET (vs.11)

Shoes on our feet speaks about our walk with God.  Scriptures that speak
about this are- Nahum 1:15, Romans 10:15 and Ephesians 6:15.

A STAFF MUST BE IN OUR HAND (vs.11)

A staff in our hand speaks about the believer's authority in the Kingdom
of God by the name of Jesus  The following Scriptures speak about a
staff being in our hand- Genesis 38:17-18, Psalm 23:4 and Mark 6:7-8.

IT IS THE LORD'S PASSOVER (vs.11)

If we follow Christ with all of our hearts, we will pass from death to
life, and from judgment to divine protection (John 5:24, 1 John 3:14, 2
Corinthians 5:17).

IT IS A MEMORIAL (vs.14)

Passover is a memorial or a remembrance (Luke 22:13-15,19).  There are
two elements of remembrance:
-God remembers us (Genesis 8:1, 9:5-16, Exodus 2:24-25, 6:2,5 Leviticus
26:38-45, Numbers 10:9, Psalm 105:7-8, 42-43, 112:6).  In fact, God has
a book of remembrance (Malachi 3:16-18).
-We must remember God (Exodus 13:3, Deuteronomy 7:17-19, 8:18, 16:3,
Numbers 15:37-41).

IT IS TO BE OBSERVED AT THE GOING DOWN OF THE SUN (Deuteronomy 16:2,6).
This was fulfilled by the Lord at His crucifixion (Matthew 27:45-46).

IT IS THE PLACE WHERE GOD WOULD PUT HIS NAME (Deuteronomy 16:2,6)

The place where God has put His name is Jerusalem (2 Kings 21:4).  Jesus
was crucified in Jerusalem.

NOT A BONE OF THE LAMB WAS TO BE BROKEN (Exodus 12:43-46)

Not a bone of our Lord was broken while He hung on the cross (John
19:33).

THERE WAS TO BE AN EXPLANATION OF THE SERVICE (Exodus 12:25-28)

Jesus explained each part of the Passover as He did the service (Luke
22:14-20, 1 Corinthians 11:23-26)

THE EGYPTIANS WERE SPOILED AT THE EXODUS (Exodus 12:31-36)

Satan was spoiled when Jesus entered hell and rose again (Colossians
2:15)

YOU MUST BE CIRCUMCISED TO EAT THE PASSOVER (Exodus 12:48, Joshua
5:2-10)

The physical act of circumcision was only a picture of the inward or
spiritual circumcision that God wanted us to have (Romans 2:28-29).  God
has always desired for His people to be circumcised in the heart
(Deuteronomy 10:12-16, 1 Corinthians 7:18-19, Galatians 6:12-15).

THE PASSOVER FEAST WAS TO BE A HOLY CONVOCATION, AND NO WORK WAS TO BE
DONE (Exodus 12:16)

A believer finds true rest in ceasing from his own works and resting in
the finished work of Christ, God's Passover Lamb (Genesis 2:1-2, Matthew
11:28-30, Hebrews 4:1-10).

THE PASSOVER MUST BE KILLED OUTSIDE THE GATES OF THE CITY (Deuteronomy
16:5)

Our Lord was crucified outside of the city walls of Jerusalem at a place
called Golgotha (John 19:16-19, Hebrews 13:10-13).

THERE IS HEALING POWER IN THE LAMB (Exodus 15:26)

Christ, is the Healer sent from God (Isaiah 53:1-5, 1 Peter 2:24, 1
Corinthians 11:26-30).

THE EXODUS WAS ON EAGLE'S WINGS (Exodus 19:4)

Scriptures associated with this are Deuteronomy 32:9-13, Isaiah 40:31,
Luke 17:33-37 and Revelation 12:6,14.

THEY SANG A SONG OF REJOICING TO THE LORD (Exodus 15:1, 19-21)

Whenever a believer experiences and understands the meaning of Passover,
there is a spirit of rejoicing to the Lord for his or her deliverance
from sin, and for experiencing the newness of life in the Savior.
NOTE:  The Passover Seder, which is the service and meal that celebrates
the Passover, always ends with songs of rejoicing.  This can be seen in
Mark 14:26.

ISRAEL IS THE FIRSTBORN OF GOD (Exodus 4:22-23)

All those who accept Jesus as Lord and Savior are called the firstborn
of God even as Jesus is called the firstborn of God (Romans 8:29,
Colossians 1:15,18, Hebrews 12:22-23).


On the fourteenth of Nisan, at the third hour of the day (9 a.m.), the
high priest took the lamb and ascended the altar so he could tie the
lamb in place on the alter.  At the same time on that day, Jesus was
nailed to the cross on Mount Moriah (Mark 15:25).  At the time of the
evening sacrifice (3 p.m.) for Passover (Exodus 12:6), the high priest
ascended the altar, cut the throat of the lamb with a knife, and said
the words, "It is finished."  These are the exact words said after
giving a peace offering to God.

At this same time, Jesus died (the ninth hour, 3:00 p.m., Matthew
27:46), saying these exact words in John 19:30- "IT IS FINISHED."




18 posted on 04/02/2010 10:28:39 AM PDT by Star Traveler (Remember to keep the Messiah of Israel in the One-World Government that we look forward to coming)
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To: Star Traveler

That’s understood. This article is about the physical suffering, though.


19 posted on 04/02/2010 10:28:39 AM PDT by Choose Ye This Day (If we will not be governed by God, we must be governed by tyrants. -- William Penn)
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To: Star Traveler

Stop right there. Do NOT hijack another thread with your lengthy, off-topic posts.


20 posted on 04/02/2010 10:29:19 AM PDT by Choose Ye This Day (If we will not be governed by God, we must be governed by tyrants. -- William Penn)
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To: Choose Ye This Day

Jesus being the Passover Lamb of God is very much on topic... :-)


21 posted on 04/02/2010 10:33:05 AM PDT by Star Traveler (Remember to keep the Messiah of Israel in the One-World Government that we look forward to coming)
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To: Star Traveler

Sorry, but your interpretation of Fall Festivals and circumcision, while interesting, deserve their own thread. They are not germane to the topic of this thread, or most of the others you serial spam.


22 posted on 04/02/2010 10:35:54 AM PDT by Choose Ye This Day (If we will not be governed by God, we must be governed by tyrants. -- William Penn)
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To: Choose Ye This Day

By Don Francisco, “He’s Alive!” This beautiful song is about Peter’s account of the Resurection.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VbSnk1R31vg

God Bless. :)=^..^=


23 posted on 04/02/2010 10:39:40 AM PDT by Biggirl ("Jesus talked to us as individuals"-Jim Vicevich/Thanks JimV!=^..^==^..^==^..^==^..^==^..^=)
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To: Choose Ye This Day
You were saying ...

Sorry, but your interpretation of Fall Festivals and circumcision, while interesting, deserve their own thread. They are not germane to the topic of this thread, or most of the others you serial spam.

If any thread mentions the death and/or burial and resurrection of Jesus, the Messiah of Israel -- this is absolutely essential and central to Jesus -- in that it forms the very basis for Jesus being there at all or even mentioning His name.

If not for Passover and if not for Jesus being the Passover Lamb -- you or anyone else wouldn't even have the first thing to say about Jesus and/or even know He existed at all.

This is the very core of what Jesus is about, whenever He is mentioned anywhere at any time.

24 posted on 04/02/2010 10:41:17 AM PDT by Star Traveler (Remember to keep the Messiah of Israel in the One-World Government that we look forward to coming)
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To: Choose Ye This Day

Thanks for sharing!!

Most appropriate on this Holy Day!!


25 posted on 04/02/2010 10:41:53 AM PDT by KEmom (Please send viable Conservative candidates to Massachusetts!!)
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To: Chong
I love that song, thank you.

As much as it pains me to read this article,(and well it should), I have to read it to fully understand what our Lord went through to save such a wretched soul that I am.

Praise the Lord, HE is no longer on that cross, and there is no way I can repay HIM for what HE did for me.

26 posted on 04/02/2010 10:48:00 AM PDT by annieokie
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To: colorcountry

WOW

BTTT


27 posted on 04/02/2010 10:57:02 AM PDT by Delta 21 (If you cant tell if I'm being sarcastic...maybe I'm not.)
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To: Choose Ye This Day

How the Passover Reveals Jesus Christ

by Rich Deem

Introduction

The festival of the Passover has been celebrated by Jews for thousands of years. It is the retelling of the great story of how God redeemed the Jewish nation from enslavement in Egypt.1 The celebration itself was given to the Jews while they were still in Egypt.2 The original celebration centered around the Passover lamb, which was sacrificed and its blood put over the doorposts as a sign of faith, so that the Lord passed over the houses of the Jews during the last plague poured out on the Egyptians - the killing of every firstborn.3 To a large degree, the Passover lamb has been eliminated from the Passover festival (with the only remnant being the roasted lamb shank bone).4 The New Testament says that Jesus is our sacrificial Lamb.5 The Passover lamb was to be a "male without defect,"6 which is the same description given to Jesus.7 In addition, when the lamb was roasted and eaten, none of its bones were to be broken.8 This fact was also prophesized for the Messiah, whose bones were not to be broken.9 It was customary during crucifixion to break the leg bones of the person after a few hours in order to hasten their death. The only way a person could breathe when hanging on a cross was to push up with his legs, which was very exhausting. By breaking the legs, death followed soon by asphyxiation. However, in the case of Jesus, they broke the legs of the other two men, but did not break His, since He was already dead.10

Passover symbolism

Much of the symbolism of Jesus' last Passover week is lost to us because we are unaware of the customs of the time. For example, Jesus came into the city of Jerusalem five days before the lamb was killed in the temple as the Passover sacrifice for the sins of the people of Israel. Five days before the lamb was to be sacrificed, it was chosen. Therefore, Jesus entered Jerusalem on lamb selection day as the lamb of God.11 The people did not understand the significance of this, since they greeted Him with palm branches12 and hailed Him as King,13 shouting "Hosanna,"14 which means "save us." However, they were not looking for a spiritual Savior, but a political savior. Palm branches were a symbol of freedom and defiance, since Simon Maccabeus had entered Jerusalem with that symbolism.15 Jesus' reaction was to weep,16 since He realized that they did not understand the Messiah's purpose in coming.

Passover sacrifice

Good Friday was the day of the Passover celebration and the day that the Passover lamb was to be sacrificed. For the previous 1,200 years, the priest would blow the shophar (ram's horn) at 3:00 p.m. - the moment the lamb was sacrificed, and all the people would pause to contemplate the sacrifice for sins on behalf of the people of Israel. On Good Friday at 3:00,17 when Jesus was being crucified, He said, "It is finished"18 - at the moment that the Passover lamb was sacrificed and the shophar was blown from the Temple. The sacrifice of the lamb of God was fulfilled at the hour that the symbolic animal sacrifice usually took place. At the same time, the veil of the Temple (a three-inch thick, several story high cloth that demarked the Holy of Holies19) tore from top to bottom20 - representing a removal of the separation between God and man. Fifty days later, on the anniversary of the giving of the law (Pentecost), God left the earthly temple to inhabit those who call on the name of Jesus through His Holy Spirit.21

Burial

The festival of unleavened bread began Friday evening (at sunset). As part of the festival, the Jews would take some of the grain - the "first fruits" of their harvest - to the Temple to offer as a sacrifice. In so doing, they were offering God all they had and trusting Him to proved the rest of the harvest. It was at this point that Jesus was buried - planted in the ground - as He said right before His death.22 Paul refers to Jesus as the first fruits of those raised from the dead in 1 Corinthians.23 As such, Jesus represents the fulfillment of God's promise to provide the rest of the harvest - resurrection of those who follow the Messiah.

Resurrection

Christian symbolism in the Passover occurs early in the Seder (the Passover dinner). Three matzahs are put together (representing the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). The middle matzah is broken,24 wrapped in a white cloth, and hidden, representing the death and burial of Jesus.25 The matzah itself is designed to represent Jesus, since it is striped and pierced, which was prophesized by Isaiah,26 David,27 and Zechariah.28 Following the Seder meal, the "buried" matzah is "resurrected," which was foretold in the prophecies of David.29

Christian communion

It was during a Passover seder30 that Jesus proclaimed that the meal represented Himself and that He was instituting the New Covenant, which was foretold by Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Isaiah.31 The celebration of this covenant has become the ordinance of communion in the Christian Church. At the end of the meal, Jesus took the unleavened bread, broke it, and said that it represented His body.32 Then He took the cup of wine, which would have been the third cup of the Seder - the cup of redemption. He said that it was the new covenant in His blood "poured out for you."33 It is through the sacrificial death and resurrection of Jesus Christ that we are declared clean before God, allowing those of us who choose to accept the pardon, to commune with Him - both now and forevermore through the eternal life He offers.

Conclusion

If you are a Christian, I encourage you to celebrate the Passover with your friends and neighbors. Our family has been doing this for the last six years and have used the celebration as a way of sharing the gospel of Christ in a fun and non-threatening manner. For more information on how you can celebrate your own Passover Seder, see the related pages below.


References

1. The entire story can be read in the book of Exodus

2. See Exodus chapter 12.

3. Then Moses summoned all the elders of Israel and said to them, "Go at once and select the animals for your families and slaughter the Passover lamb. Take a bunch of hyssop, dip it into the blood in the basin and put some of the blood on the top and on both sides of the doorframe. Not one of you shall go out the door of his house until morning. When the LORD goes through the land to strike down the Egyptians, He will see the blood on the top and sides of the doorframe and will pass over that doorway, and he will not permit the destroyer to enter your houses and strike you down. (Exodus 12:21-23)

4. The Passover lamb was still sacrificed in the first century, as indicated in the New testament - Then came the day of Unleavened Bread on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed. (Luke 22:7)

5. Get rid of the old yeast that you may be a new batch without yeast--as you really are. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. (1 Corinthians 5:7)

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, "Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! (John 1:29)

When he saw Jesus passing by, he said, "Look, the Lamb of God!" (John 1:36) For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. (1 Peter 1:18-19)

I answered, "Sir, you know." And he said, "These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. (Revelation 7:14)

"And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even to death. (Revelation 12:11)

6. The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats. (Exodus 12:5)

7. For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. (1 Peter 1:18-19)

8. "It must be eaten inside one house; take none of the meat outside the house. Do not break any of the bones. (Exodus 12:46)

9. He keeps all his bones; not one of them is broken. (Psalm 34:20)

10. The soldiers therefore came, and broke the legs of the first man, and of the other man who was crucified with Him; but coming to Jesus, when they saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs;... For these things came to pass, that the Scripture might be fulfilled, "Not a bone of Him shall be broken." (John 19:32, 33, 36)

11. The next day he saw Jesus coming to him, and said, "Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! (John 1:29)

12. On the next day the great multitude who had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, took the branches of the palm trees, and went out to meet Him, and began to cry out, "Hosanna! BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD, even the King of Israel." (John 12:12-13) And most of the multitude spread their garments in the road, and others were cutting branches from the trees, and spreading them in the road. (Matthew 21:8)

13. saying, "BLESSED IS THE KING WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD; Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!" (Luke 19:38)

And the multitudes going before Him, and those who followed after were crying out, saying, "Hosanna to the Son of David; BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD; Hosanna in the highest!" (Matthew 21:9)

14. And the multitudes going before Him, and those who followed after were crying out, saying, "Hosanna to the Son of David; BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD; Hosanna in the highest!" (Matthew 21:9) And those who went before, and those who followed after, were crying out, "Hosanna! BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD; Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David; Hosanna in the highest!" (Mark 11:9-10)

15. Simon Maccabeus entered the Akra at Jerusalem after its capture, “with thanksgiving, and branches of palm trees, and with harps, and cymbals, and with viols, and hymns, and songs: because there was destroyed a great enemy out of Israel” (1 Maccabees 13:51) (see also 2 Maccabees 10:7).

16. And when He approached, He saw the city and wept over it, (Luke 19:41)

17. And about the ninth hour [3:00 p.m.] Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, "ELI, ELI, LAMA SABACHTHANI?" that is, "MY GOD, MY GOD, WHY HAST THOU FORSAKEN ME?"... And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit. (Matthew 27:46, 50) (see also Mark 15:34-37, Luke 23:44-46)

18. When Jesus therefore had received the sour wine, He said, "It is finished!" And He bowed His head, and gave up His spirit. (John 19:30)

19. And behind the second veil, there was a tabernacle which is called the Holy of Holies, (Hebrews 9:3)

20. And behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom, and the earth shook; and the rocks were split, (Matthew 27:51) And the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. (Mark 15:38) the sun being obscured; and the veil of the temple was torn in two. (Luke 23:45)

21. Acts chapter 2.

22. And Jesus answered them, saying, "The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains by itself alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. (John 12:23-24)

23. But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep. (1 Corinthians 15:20)

24. And when He had given thanks, He brake it, and said, "Take, eat: this is My body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of Me." (1 Corinthians 11:24)

25. And so they took the body of Jesus, and bound it in linen wrappings with the spices, as is the burial custom of the Jews. (John 19:40)

26. But he was pierced through for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and by his stripes we are healed. (Isaiah 53:5)

27. For dogs have surrounded me; A band of evildoers has encompassed me; They pierced my hands and my feet. (Psalm 22:16)

28. "And I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of grace and of supplication, so that they will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn for Him, as one mourns for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him, like the bitter weeping over a first-born. (Zechariah 12:10)

29. For Thou wilt not abandon my soul to Sheol; Neither wilt Thou allow Thy Holy One to undergo decay. (Psalm 16:10)

O LORD, Thou hast brought up my soul from Sheol; Thou hast kept me alive, that I should not go down to the pit. (Psalm 30:3)

But God will redeem my soul from the power of Sheol; for He will receive me. Selah. (Psalm 49:15)

I shall not die, but live, And tell of the works of the LORD. (Psalm 118:17)

30. And He said to them, "I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; (Luke 22:15)

31. "Behold, days are coming," declares the LORD, "when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them," declares the LORD. "But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days," declares the LORD, "I will put My law within them, and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. (Jeremiah 31:31-33)

"And I shall give them one heart, and shall put a new spirit within them. And I shall take the heart of stone out of their flesh and give them a heart of flesh, that they may walk in My statutes and keep My ordinances, and do them. Then they will be My people, and I shall be their God. (Ezekiel 11:19-20)

"I am the LORD, I have called you in righteousness, I will also hold you by the hand and watch over you, And I will appoint you as a covenant to the people, As a light to the nations, (Isaiah 42:6)

32. While they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, "Take and eat; this is my body." Then he took the cup, gave thanks and offered it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins." (Matthew 26:26-28)

33. In the same way, after the supper He took the cup, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is poured out for you. (Luke 22:20)

28 posted on 04/02/2010 12:09:32 PM PDT by Star Traveler (Remember to keep the Messiah of Israel in the One-World Government that we look forward to coming)
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To: Choose Ye This Day

I can’t see the screen too good right now after watching the video, but my heart is filled with gratitute. Praise God of such LOVE, GRACE, and MERCY, to love even someone like me...

I love You, Jesus.


29 posted on 04/02/2010 4:20:33 PM PDT by Chong (How's that HopEy, changEy, (thingEy) stuff working out for ya?)
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To: annieokie

That song gives me REAL hope, even when things go wrong... Yes, Praise the Lord for loving us in spite of us.


30 posted on 04/02/2010 4:24:22 PM PDT by Chong (How's that HopEy, changEy, (thingEy) stuff working out for ya?)
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