The Moral of the Passover
Ezekiel 45:21
In the first month, in the fourteenth day of the month, you shall have the passover, a feast of seven days…

This great feast, which was so solemnly though hastily inaugurated, and so solemnly and joyously renewed after a discreditable lapse (Exodus 12.; 2 Chronicles 30.), had an historical and also a religious aspect.

I. ITS HISTORICAL SIGNIFICANCE. It recalled one great event of surpassing national interest; it brought back to memory the pitiless cruelty, the blind obduracy, the false confidence of Egypt, and, at the same time, the sad sufferings and the trembling hopes of Israel. "With what solemn awe and yet with what thrilling expectation did their forefathers in the land of bondage partake of that strange meal! With what eager carefulness did they see that the saving blood-stream marked the lintels of the door which would shut in their dear ones! And what a morning on the morrow! What joyous congratulations in each Hebrew family when they all met, in life and health, on that memorable march! And what terrible consternation in those Egyptian homes where the angel of death had not passed by but had struck his fearful stroke! It was the hour of Jehovah's most signal interposition; it was the hour of national redemption. They might well remember it "in all their dwellings through all their generations."

II. ITS SPIRITUAL SIGNIFICANCE. The keeping of the Passover was fitted to exert a most invaluable influence in two ways.

1. It was calculated to bind the nation together and so to preserve its unity; or, when that unity was broken, to induce a kinder or more brotherly feeling between the separated communities, and to prevent further dissolution. For nothing is a stronger tie than common sacred memories - the vivid recollection of scenes, of sufferings, of struggles, through which common ancestors have passed. Such memories allay ill feeling and strengthen existing "cords of love."

2. It was calculated to preserve their allegiance to their Divine Deliverer. For the slaying and eating of the lamb in their homes:

(1) Spoke to their hearts of the vast and the immeasurable obligation under which they stood to the Lord their God; it presented him to their minds as the Lord their Redeemer, who had with a mighty hand rescued them from tyranny and oppression, and placed them in the land of plenty, in homes of peace.

(2) Summoned them to the liveliest gratitude for such signal mercy, for such abounding and abiding goodness.

(3) Charged them to live that life of purity and of separateness from heathen iniquity of which the unleavened bread spoke to them while the feast lasted (see homily in loc., in Leviticus 23:4-8).

1. It is well to signalize individual mercies; it is well, by some wise habit or institution, to call to remembrance, for renewed gratitude and consecration, some special deliverance granted us by the God of our life during our past career.

2. It is well to commemorate common, national favors; to recall, with thankfulness and devotion, the goodness of God shown in great national conjunctures.

3. It is best to perpetuate the one great, surpassing redemption of our race; to join in the commemoration of that supreme event when the Lamb of God was slain for the sins of the world. - C.

Parallel Verses
KJV: In the first month, in the fourteenth day of the month, ye shall have the passover, a feast of seven days; unleavened bread shall be eaten.

WEB: In the first [month], in the fourteenth day of the month, you shall have the Passover, a feast of seven days; unleavened bread shall be eaten.

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