Passover, the Gateway to HeavenSeptember 16, 2022
“Do you want to enter the kingdom of heaven?” Most of us respond to this question quickly saying “Yes”, taking it as a simple question as if we were just getting asked if we want to eat or drink. But how would you answer this next question? “Do you know the way to heaven?” People often answer this with their own opinions and interpretations not finding the right answer from the bible. But Jesus told us the fact that only those who follow God’s will can enter heaven’s kingdom(Mat 7:21). And, so the kingdom of heaven will never be opened to us unless we know its gateway, and that is the Passover.
Passover and God’s Love
God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, Jesus, to give the world the blessing of eternal life (John 3:16). We are taught from a young age that it is through God’s love that we were able to live and possess the essentials and the riches of this world, which God created for the needs of the living. For this, we must remember to give God praises He is worthy to receive forever and remember to keep His teachings so that we may live eternally, soon in His kingdom when the time comes.
Revelation 21:4 ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
The promised place of God for His children is the pleasant and wonderful kingdom of heaven where death does not exist. However, all people born on this earth have the destiny of death from the beginning and after facing judgment(Hebrews 9:27) so no mortal beings would be able to enter there. If all people are to die in the end, no one will enter heaven, and all people were left only to suffer in the agony of death in hell. This will be the consequence of the sin we committed in heaven.
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
We committed grievous sins in heaven deserving the death sentence and eternal punishment in hell. But God has mercy on us and willingly gave up His life on the cross, for us to have life in heaven (John 3:15). We must be the one who should die and take up the lament of the cross but instead we receive an eternal blessing of salvation through God’s great suffering.
God’s Promised Blessing Contained in the Passover
John 6:53-54 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day.
Jesus said that unless we eat His flesh and drink his blood, we have no life, not the physical life but the eternal life for our soul to live in the kingdom of heaven. Then how can we eat Jesus’ flesh and drink His blood?
Luke 22:7-8 Then came the day of Unleavened Bread on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed. Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, “Go and make preparations for us to eat the Passover.”
Luke 22:19-20 And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.”
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. This scene from the Bible where Jesus and His disciples ate the last supper is familiar to both Christians and non-Christians. This is probably because of the famous painter Leonardo Da Vinci who painted the “Last Supper” which depicts the holy Supper of the Lamb, Jesus.
Unfortunately, despite many people who know this, they are not able to recognize the important fact hidden in the painting. Biblically speaking, it should not be referred to only as the last supper of Jesus but be called the Holy Passover Communion which He eagerly desired to keep and waited until the appointed time to keep with His disciples (Luke 22:15; Mat 26:17). This shows how much God gave importance of keeping the Passover. Jesus said that the Passover bread is His flesh and the Passover wine His blood, we must eat and drink it, for what reason? It is for us to have eternal life. Furthermore, we could also receive the blessing of the forgiveness of sins having complete redemption through His blood shed on the cross (Mat 26:17-19).
The Lord’s Passover: a Lasting Ordinance
In this world, people have to follow some regulations to live in an orderly manner of life. It is the same with walking with God towards heaven, we must follow a regulation to lead a faithful religious life that will surely lead us to salvation. Concerning this, the Bible records the Passover feast, which the Israelites kept in the Old Testament times.
Exodus 12:10-14 Do not leave any of it till morning; if some is left till morning, you must burn it.This is how you are to eat it: with your cloak tucked into your belt, your sandals on your feet and your staff in your hand. Eat it in haste; it is the Lord’s Passover. “On that same night I will pass through Egypt and strike down every firstborn of both people and animals, and I will bring judgment on all the gods of Egypt. I am the Lord. The blood will be a sign for you on the houses where you are, and when I see the blood, I will pass over you. No destructive plague will touch you when I strike Egypt. “This is a day you are to commemorate; for the generations to come you shall celebrate it as a festival to the Lord—a lasting ordinance.
God said that the Passover feast is to be commemorated until the next generations to come. It is a lasting ordinance. That is why Jesus our God who came in the flesh also kept and commanded the Passover when He came on this earth.
Matthew 26:17-19 On the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread, the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Where do you want us to make preparations for you to eat the Passover?” He replied, “Go into the city to a certain man and tell him, ‘The Teacher says: My appointed time is near. I am going to celebrate the Passover with my disciples at your house.’”So the disciples did as Jesus had directed them and prepared the Passover.
Both in the Old and in the New Testament times, God gave the Passover to His holy people to follow and keep. It is because the Passover is the core truth through which we could walk the way to heaven. So in this age too, we must surely keep the Passover and patiently wait for God to come to lead us back to heaven.
Matthew 7:21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.
In the question, “Do you know the way to heaven?’, we should answer this with great conviction and correct answer. To enter the kingdom of heaven, we must not only call the name of God or boast about our faith but instead get the opportunity to practice and keep the holy feast of God, the Passover which is the absolute will of God.