And the first day of unleavened bread, when they killed the passover, his disciples said to him…
I. CONSIDERING THE EVENTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES ATTENDING ITS ORIGINAL INSTITUTION (Exodus 12) we may say, in general, that it signified deliverance through the lamb. The angel of death entered not where its blood was sprinkled. It declared that the corruption incurred in Egypt was expiated.
II. But the meaning of the Passover was not exhausted in the idea of atonement. For it consisted not only in the slaying of the lamb and the offering of his blood, but in THE JOYFUL EATING OF IT. The wine at the feast was a symbol of its blood. The quaffing of this as a cup of refreshment, and the feeding upon the savoury flesh, expressively indicated that it was the privilege of God's reconciled people not only to be saved from death by the lamb, but to receive from it conscious satisfaction, joy, and strength. They felt the benefit of His surrendered life in all their renewed and quickened powers.
III. LEAVEN, AS PRODUCING FERMENTATION, WAS A SYMBOL TO THE JEWS OF CORRUPTION. It represented the influence of idolatrous Egypt, which they were utterly to put away. Unleavened bread, therefore, was an emblem of purity. It signified that they who ate it had put away sin.
IV. THE BITTER HERBS ARE EMBLEMATICAL OF THE TRIALS AND DISCIPLINE WHICH FORM AN ESSENTIAL AND WHOLESOME PART OF THE CHRISTIAN LIFE. Such trials are shadows made by the light. They are inseparable accompaniments of the gospel in its work of subduing the world to submission to Christ.
(A. H. Currier.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And the first day of unleavened bread, when they killed the passover, his disciples said unto him, Where wilt thou that we go and prepare that thou mayest eat the passover?