“He is Risen” – Artist Greg Olsen
Jesus (Yahshua) as the Passover (Pesach) Lamb
Looking backwards the Redemption during the Exodus –
Looking forward the Restoration by the Messiah
Robert D. Mock MD
Passover Seder – April 9, 2001
Re-edited May, 2007
All Heaven stood still, in suspense, awe, and supreme sadness. In the archon, the mighty archangels wept. Each of them would gladly have substituted their being in place of their Supreme Commander, as He hung upon that measly Tree. It was just a mere splinter in the whole world of God’s (HaShem’s) creation. Look at them, did not they hold in their collective beings, all seven of them, the vast power, energy, and emanations that streamed out of the Throne of the Almighty, the Unseen, the Eternal Yahweh? Did they not have the awesome responsibility of focusing this mighty power, this unlimited energy into seven emanations or attributes, which the Almighty allowed to be known in the far reaches of the multiple universes, which He created?
Jesus, Yahshua, was their Leader. Through his Being, the Divine Image of the Eternal Father was recreated in part in all of these noble angelic beings. Some of these beings reflected only one attribute of God. This is who they were, the Archon of the angelic world, the Spirit Forces that God used to communicate to his entire universal realm. Other beings, reflected the entire Image of God, all seven attributes, in their created forms. This was Adam and all the other sons of God who met around the throne of God.
Only Yahshua, the Metatron, or the Angel that stood before the presence of the Almighty One of Israel could represent all the ten attributes or emanations of Yahweh (YHVH), His Father. As the Tiferet of the Sefirot of the World of the Divine, Yahshua was the fullest revelation of the Sefirot (Image) of His Father in heaven. He was the complete “image” in the Spirit World of the Angelic Hosts, and in His image, Adam was created.
Genesis 1:26 – “Then God said, ‘Let us make man in Our image (Sefirot), according to Our likeness…so God created man in His own image (Sefirot); in the image of God (Sefirot) He created him; male and female He created them.”
As He hung on that Tree at Golgotha, Yahshua was all alone. HaSatan held him hostage in the clutches of his evil power. His lifeless form hung silent as the elemental forces of earth raged, shook, and convulsed in anger and fury. Billion upon billions of the angelic hosts gasped and stood with paralysis and suspense. Each one of their lives was at stake. One third of the angelic host had already joined the dark forces of HaSatan. They were now participants as the powers of darkness and evil. There they watched their Supreme Leader, who within His body held the ‘Image’ of the complete emanations of the Almighty and Divine One. Within Yahshua was the Blueprint of the Universe.
If Yahshua’s eternal existence could be extinguished, every created being in the universe and every other created dimension would disappear and cease to exist. This was the kamikaze dream of HaSatan. Satan knew that he had a limited existence, and when he went, he wanted all the beings of the universe to be destroyed with him. At this moment, the fabric of heaven hung in the balance, as Yahshua (Jesus) hung on the Tree.
Then in a mighty voice which magnified and amplified throughout all the universes, Yahshua cried out, “It is finished”. The angelic hosts erupted in shouts of song and praise, “Hallelujah”, Praise be to Yahweh. The supreme sacrifice was complete.
During Passover we celebrate the day God began to re-link the shattered “Ladder” to heaven. This ladder (Jacob’s ladder), called the Sefirot, went from the Throne of HaShem (“The Name”) to all the created beings in the universe and the angelic realms. The “eyes” of the universe; all the angelic hosts, the sons of God, and all other created planets including the fallen angelic powers and the demonic beings under their allegiance stopped and watched in awe. Yes, some of them watched in horror, as Yahshua (Jesus), the complete emanation of God (HaShem) in human flesh, took one gasp and said, “It is finished.”
From the day of the “promise” to Abraham, when God promised that he would have a chosen seed, a “chosen people”, there in the midst of the era from the 21st century BCE to the 21st century CE, the God of Israel chose to plant the central point of His Plan of Salvation. For centuries, the Children of Israel and then the remnant of that chosen race, the tribe of Judah, celebrated the Passover by recounting God’s (HaShem’s) intervention for them from slavery in Egypt. This celebration, even to this day, is remembered in the symbols of the 4 cups of the Passover Seder, looking backward to that day of redemption in Egypt. As HaShem said, (HOTZEYTI) I shall Take you Out, (HITZALTI) I shall Rescue you, (GA’ALTI) I shall Redeem you, and LEKACHTI, I shall Take you To me.).
Hindsight is so easy. Retrospective visions do not always have to take a lot of courage. Yet God (HaShem) wanted His chosen people to experience that time is in two dimensions, looking backwards in commemoration and celebration and looking forward in faith to a new beginning. The drama and the rituals were all there. God (HaShem) planted it within their national psyche, yet they had to have the faith to recognize it. The Passover, besides looking back to the greatest day of redemption in history, also looked forward to the Maschiach (Messiah) that was typified by the Korban Pesach (Passover) Lamb. There within the drama of the Passover was an exact replica, called a “type” of what the real event, called an anti-type, would be like.
As this drama was reenacted every year for 1500 years, so in the midst of the Sabbatical weeks of years, 30 CE, Jesus, the son of Joseph (Yahshua ben Joseph) reenacted this drama in living color. This was in a literal fulfillment of the Passover and the Festival of the First Fruits that through his death and resurrection. Yahshua (Jesus) became the living Passover Lamb (Korban Pesach), the Lamb of God. Let’s first look at the elements needed to celebrate the Passover, the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and the Feast of First Fruits.
First, the festival year must begin. God (HaShem) did not print out a yearly calendar with pretty pictures and famous quotes for His people. He started His year with a festival, and the festivals were determined to begin by watching the arrival of the sliver of the New Moon. This is called an “observed” calendar, as opposed to a “calculated” calendar that the use today in Judaism. This puts some serious meaning to the phrase, “watch and be ready”. You see, the Lord of hosts (HaShem) can change the dates of a calendar at His will, whether it is by delaying the onset of a New Moon, or causing the barley to ripen early or late. On the other hand, it has been man’s ultimate desire to live in a world that is calculated, predetermined, and controllable that is by the will of man. The problem exists that many times we exclude the desires and purposes of our Creator God. This date was the New Years to the Hebrews as given by their God, the Eternal One of Israel.
Exodus 12:1 - “Now the Lord spoke unto Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, This month shall be your beginning of months: it shall be the first month of the year to you.”
The Passover was celebrated on the 15th day of a 30 day month. Passover was also always in ancient times on the day of the full moon. Therefore the first day of the month, was at the sighting of the first sliver of the New Moon, on the western horizon just after the setting of the sun. It was on the eve of Passover, the 15th day of the Passover month, that the Passover meal with the roasted lamb was eaten.
Deuteronomy 16:5-8 – “You may not sacrifice the Passover within any of your gates which the Lord your God gives you; but at the place where the Lord your God chooses to make His name abide, there you shall sacrifice the Passover at twilight, at the going down of the sun, at the time you came out of Egypt. And you shall roast and eat it in the place which the Lord your God chooses, and in the morning you shall turn and go to your tents. Six days you shall eat unleavened bread, and on the seventh day there shall be a sacred assembly to the Lord your God, You shall do no work on it.”
The Passover day was also recognized as the First Day of the seven day Feast of Unleavened Bread. Every seventh day during the weekly cycle of days was a Seventh-day Sabbath, or a Sabbatical week of days. On the seventh day, was a Sabbath to celebrate the Creation of this planet earth and when God rested and celebrated it with His creation. The first and the seventh days of the Festival of Unleavened Bread were recognized also as Sabbaths (Shabbats). The first and seventh Passover Sabbaths were also known as “High Sabbaths”, for they occurred on the festivals, as noted in:
John 19:31 - “Therefore, because it was the Preparation Day, that the bodies should not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away.”
The First Fruit Offering of the barley harvest occurred as prescribed in the Torah on the first day after the weekly Sabbath during the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
Leviticus 23:11 – “He shall wave the sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted on your behalf; on the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it.”
From this we must make several assumptions. To offer the barley sheaves as an offering in the Temple, it must be ripened in the fields. If the barleycorn was not ripe, such as having a late winter with delayed ripening, then the First Month of Aviv (Abib KJV) was delayed another month, and the prior year had a thirteenth month, called Adar Bet. This was critical, as barley ripens and goes to seed in less than a month.
On the 16th day of Nissan, in a public gathering on the outskirts of Jerusalem, the first of the barley crop is harvested using sickles. This barley is then brought to the Holy Temple to be used in the Omer offering. – The Temple Institute
It must be recognized that there is nothing in scripture that states how many months there are in a year. A year could have 11, or 13, or 14 months. The only prescription for a calendar year was that the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread must occur in the month that the sickle is put to the standing barley, or the first month of the year.
Deuteronomy 16:9 – “You shall count seven weeks for yourself; begin to count the seven weeks from the time you begin to put the sickle to the grain.”
In New Testament times, the barleycorn was the first grain to ripen in the springtime. The priest (cohanim) planted the barley at the base of the Mount of Olives, across the Kidron valley from the Temple Mount in an area called the Valley of Ashes, on the 1st day of the 8th moon, the month of Chesvan (October - November).
The fall rain season was recognized to begin after the last Torah required feast of the year, the Feast of Ingathering or the Tabernacles or Booths which was called Succot. At this time the fall rains began preparation of the land for the planting and germination of the spring grain crops.
The New Year could not begin until sheaves of barley were known to have ripened before the New Moon of the New Year. It was the responsibility of the cohanim (priests) to daily inspect the barley crops planted near the temple and announce the time of the ripening of the first sheaves of barley.
For centuries before the birth of Jesus (Yahshua), the traditions of Passover had been celebrated. The order for the preparation of the Passover feast, under the inspection and guidance of the High Priest went in the following order. This began after the barleycorn was found to be ripened so that the first fruits of the barley sheaves could be offered in the House of the Lord. Once the barley was determined to be ripen, the next sighting of the sliver of the New Moon determined the beginning of the New Year, the month of Aviv or Abib to the ancient Hebrews or the month of Nisan to the Jews after the Babylonian captivity.
The High Priest on this date went out of the city of Jerusalem through the Damascus Gate to the north to select the most perfect of the yearling Passover lambs in the fields north of the city. For the next 4 days, the Passover lamb was daily inspected by the High Priest in the Temple until declared “pure” by the high priest in the 4th day, the 14th of Nisan.
Once the barley is brought to the Temple Courtyard, priests beat, roast, grind, and sift the grain. A handful of the resulting flour is burned on the altar. The remainder is eaten by the priests. – The Temple Institute
On the 14th day of Nisan, the High Priest cast a knife into the heart of the Passover lamb. The lamb was then prepared on the High Altar in the Holy Place. This was also the second lamb offered that day, as the morning sacrificial lamb had been offered earlier that morning. All the Passover lambs brought to the temple by the pilgrims were prepared at the Temple in the gigantic ovens on the Mount. One by one they were given to the pilgrims to be eaten in the Passover Seders at their home celebrations. This occurred on the eve of the 15th day or the night of our 14th day. This was the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. The Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread were a continuation of the same feast.
The First day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread or the Passover Seder
After the Passover, the Festival of Unleavened Bread went for another seven days until the 21st day of Nisan. The first and the seventh days were to be festival Sabbaths, or days of Holy Convocation to the Lord. These Sabbaths (Shabbats) were floating Sabbaths and could be on any day of the week.
Deuteronomy 16:3-4 – “You shall eat no leavened bread with it; seven days you shall eat unleavened bread with it, that is, the bread of affliction (for you came out of the land of Egypt in haste), that you may remember the day in which you came out of the land of Egypt all the days of your life. And no leaven shall be seen among you in all your territory for seven days, nor shall any of the meat which you sacrifice the first day at twilight remain overnight until morning.
Attached to the Passover was the counting of seven weeks until the fiftieth day when the Feast of Pentecost began. This first day of Omer, was to occur on the “day after the Sabbath (Leviticus 23:11), or the Day of the Offering of First Fruits.
Leviticus 23:11 – “He shall wave the sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted on your behalf; on the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it.”
The Day of the Offering of First Fruits was the day after the weekly Seventh-day Sabbath that came after the 15th day of Nisan. In the Torah, it was not designated as the 16th day of Nisan as this Seventh day weekly Sabbath (Shabbat), and not necessarily the same day as the Passover Sabbath. (Shabbat)
Let us turn our attention to the events which led up to the crucifixion. Galilee and Judea were astir, for it was a Sabbatical Passover that occurred every seven years. According to Mosaic Law, every seventh year the land would rest, with no cultivation. The only produce during that year could be grown, was that which grew naturally, whether it was fruits or grains.
“Wherever He leads Me” – Painting by Greg Olsen
As such, the population would have to stockpile provisions for that seventh year. During this time, the land stood at rest, and the population was on a year long Sabbatical. During this time, eager followers of any messianic or Hasmonean aspirant to the throne flocked to their cause. Those who were Torah students would spend the year in the rabbinic schools of Torah study. These were peak years for the Zealots cause, with their obsessed goal to free Judea from Roman rule. The Sicarii were always available to promote the cause of freedom even if it meant a quick assassination of an opponent.
We see Jesus (Yahshua) heading to Jerusalem, and for the first time He cautions his disciples to arm themselves, if nothing more than self-defense. Peter takes on the stance of a personal bodyguard of Jesus. Prior to Jesus’ arrival word reaches him of the death of several Zealot patriots, which give every appearance that the perimeters of Jerusalem, or at least the City of David, had been secured in anticipation of a general uprising. Then the battering rams were brought into the Kidron Valley. Soon the strong tower of Siloam toppled and with it the death of eighteen Zealot defenders.
John 12:1 – “Then, six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus was who had been dead, whom He had raised from the dead.”
It was now six days before the Passover (8th of Nisan), and Jesus was arriving in Bethany. At this time he was a hunted man. Every since the resurrection of Lazarus, a few days prior, the Jewish leadership, were plotting to put Yahshua to death.” (John 11:53)
John 11:49-50; 53-54 – “And one of them, Caiphas, being the high priest that year, said to them, ‘You know nothing at all, nor do you consider that it is expedient for us that one man should die for the people, and not that the whole nation should perish…Then, from that day on, they plotted to put Him to death. Therefore Jesus no longer walked openly among the Jews, but went from there into the country near the wilderness, to a city called Ephraim, and there remained with His disciples.”
In the few days prior to the Passover, Jesus had escaped with his disciples to a wilderness town of Ephraim. (John 11:54). There they waited out the days before the Passover. The tension was high. The suspense was intense.
The city of Jerusalem was abuzz. Pilgrims by the hundreds of thousands were thronging into the city. As with every year, this was the day when they anticipated the announcement of the coming of the messiah. Would this be the year? The pilgrims in route would collect palm branches and cedar boughs to bring with them in anticipation of the messiah. As with every festival, every living space a pilgrim resided. There they entered the mitzvah baths to purify themselves. And then at the temple, they awaited and watched for the coming of the messiah. The whole populace was also in anticipation of whether Yahshua (Jesus) would come to the feast. Also the chief priests and Pharisees were also waiting, for ‘if anyone knew where he was, the word was out that he should report it, so that the temple leaders might seize him. (John 11:35)
John 11:56-57 – “Then they sought Jesus, and spoke among themselves as they stood in the temple, ‘What do you think – that He will not come to the feast?’ Now both the chief priests and the Pharisees had given a command, that if anyone knew where He was, he should report it, that they might seize Him.”
On the eve of the fifth day before Passover, Yahshua was a guest of honor in the home of Simon, in a celebration feast. There, Mary Magdalene, the sister of Martha and Lazarus was also an honored guest. She opened an alabaster vase with a pound of spikenard and anointed the head and the feet of Jesus, in the manner of anointing a king.
Matthew 26:6 – “And when Jesus was in Bethany at the house of Simon the leper, a woman came to Him having an alabaster flask of very costly fragrant oil, and she poured it on His head as He sat at the table.”
John 12:1-4 – “Then, six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus was who had been dead, whom He had raised from the dead. There they made Him a supper; and Martha served, but Lazarus was one of those who sat at the table with Him. Then Mary took a pound of very costly oil of spikenard, anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair. And the house will filled with the fragrance of the oil. But one of His disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, who would betray Him, said, ‘Why was this fragrant oil not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?’”
It was on the evening prior to the day of the lamb selection by the High Priest, Jesus made special preparations with his disciples (talmidim) for the events of the next day. It was a secret mission. Jesus knew that on the fourth day before the Passover, the High Priest was to leave the city through the North Gate as he went to the sheep herds and inspected the yearling flock for the most perfect lamb of the season. With this in mind, Jesus then laid out his strategy with his disciples.
The Northern Damascus Gate in Jerusalem – Photo by Robert Mock
This morning of the 10th day of Nisan awakened. The sky was crystal clear, the cool early spring breezes swept down through the Kidron valley. The ripened barley was waving at the base of the Mount of Olives in the Field of Ashes. As directed, the chosen disciples found a donkey with a young colt tied in a doorway near an open street. On the side of the Mount of Olives, the disciples (talmidim) awaited their Master.
Within the city of Jerusalem, the crowds of pilgrims were in anticipation of a great procession with the arrival of the Pesach Lamb. Every year, four days before Passover, a vast entourage of cohanim (priests) would file out of the Herod’s Temple. Instead of exiting out of the gate nearest the Temple on the western wall and walking over the overhanging bridge over the Tyropean Valley that connected the Temple Mount with the Upper City, the procession of hundreds of cohanim (priests) paraded out of the Royal Stoa’s western gate entrance, where the vast temple market place, the Bazaar of Hanan (Ananus the Elder) was located. There they walked down the wide staircase over what is known as the Robinsons’ Arch, turning south, then west and finally north as they connected with the main North-west street of Jerusalem, the Damascus street going to the North Gate, known as the Damascus Gate.
The procession entered the Upper City, where the densely packed homes, had the appearance of an impenetrable wall. To the left was the tall imposing Hasmonean Palace, built over a hundred years prior looming high on the horizon.
The cohanim (priests) began to line the sides of the Damascus street, two by two, maintaining positions on either side of the street, as they rocked back and forth with palm fronds in their hands. As the cohanim positioned themselves, the High Priest and his entourage made its way north to the North Gate. Outside the city they inspected the flocks of yearling lambs to find the most perfect lamb. Year after year this custom was dramatized on the fourth day prior to Passover. Inside the city, the hundreds of thousands of pilgrims who flocked to the city had already arrived, each one bringing a palm frond or cedar bough, they had collected in route to the Holy City. The whole city was lined with greenery as they placed these boughs outside the residence that they were staying.
The eager cohanim (priests) awaited the return of the High Priest. When Caiphas, the high priest entered the Damascus Gate bringing the selected lamb by his side, the cohanim) at the gate began shouting, “Hosanna to the Highest! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed be the kingdom of our father David that is coming! Hosanna in the Highest!” (Mark 11:9-10) Upon hearing the shout the people in the city, those who had already purified themselves in the mitzvahs in the southern part of the city, ran out into the street, also bringing their fronds and started shouting, “Hosanna in the Highest!”
Outside the Damascus Gate, to the east of the city, the disciples on the Mount of Olives were waiting to rendezvous with Yahshua. We now have a whole group of disciples (talmidim), a mother donkey and her two-three years old colt. A blanket is put over the colt and Yahshua quietly puts his hand on the colt’s mane. This was the colt’s first riding experience. The quietness of the Master was transmitted to the colt as He mounts and they begin the descent into the Kidron Valley into the city.
In unison, as cued by the Rabbi Yahshua, the disciples begin to shout, “Hosanna in the Highest! Blessed is He who comes in the Name of our Lord!” The flocks of pilgrims join in the chant as Jesus and the talmidim (disciples) went around the northern part of the Temple Mount, below the base of the Antonia Fortress towards the Gate of Damascus.
In the meantime, the Caiphas, the High Priest, has now exited the Northern Damascus Gate and was heading out to the fields to inspect the flocks of yearling lambs. The chant intensified, the cohanim at the Gate hear the chant and began to shout, “Hosanna in the Highest! Blessed is He who comes in the Name of our Lord!” The chant now cascaded like a domino down the Damascus Street all the way to the wall to the Temple Mount. Suddenly, the cohanim at the gate realize, they have been fooled. This was not the return of the High Priest. This was Rabbi Yahshua and his disciples. Some of the Shammaite Pharisees, the dogmatic sticklers of church protocol and defining the letter of the truth, challenged Jesus, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples.” Jesus shouts back to them over the swelling cries of the multitude, “If these were silent, the very stones would cry out.” (Luke 19:40)
The people began to flock out of their homes, grabbing their palm fronds outside the doors and the shouting swelled throughout the city. Anticipation was high! The whole land had heard of the teachings of the great Rabbi Yahshua. Was this not a Sabbatical year, a special year in which the whole land rests? Were not rumors abounding throughout the land that the messiah would come in the on the Shabbat of years?
Not only was it a Sabbatical year, it was a Sabbatical Passover, which only occurred every seven years, the Highest Passover when pilgrims throughout the Diaspora flocked to the Holy Land. The city was swollen with pilgrims throughout the world; Macedonia, Crete, Parthia, Rome, and Ethiopia. Each pilgrim from their own countries, each with their strange costumes akin to their native land, many trying to remember a bit of Hebrew they rarely used, occasionally breaking into the tongue of their land of residence, all producing a cacophony of sound and sight.
Solomon’s Porch in the Temple of Herod – by EBible
You can almost see a cohanim, rocking back and forth with their palm fronds, breaking the rhythm, leaning over and peering up the street. Where is the priest? Where is the Lamb? Suddenly they see. What! “Rabbi Jesus riding a colt. followed by mother ass. and a whole entourage of His disciples!” What is this!
The crowd became ecstatic; the town was in a tumult. They shouted, “Hosanna in the Highest! Blessed is He who comes in the Name of our Lord! Blessed be the kingdom of our father David that is coming! Hosanna in the Highest!” Jumping in glee they threw off their cloaks, so that the messiah could ride over on a garment-laden path. Yes, said the Zealots, this is our man! We have sealed the perimeters of the city, and the revolt is ripe to take the city in the name of HaShem. Yes, said the Sicarii, we have waited for him. Now we can destroy the hated Romans and the traitorous Temple leaders, the Herodians, and the Sadducees, who have played into and have been bought by the blood money of the Romans. Yes, said the peasants and the populous! Here is the messiah, who will bring in the Kingdom of the God of Israel. The crowds thronged behind Yahshua as He headed south to the Temple Mount and the Royal Stoa. The people, the cohanim were swept up in vast tide of humanity. Guess what?
Caiphas, the High Priest was returning from the northern fields with the Passover Lamb in hand and as he entered the northern Damascus Gate, the street was empty. What’s going on! When he hears that Rabbi Yahshua has entered the city as a royal aspirant to the throne of David, the messiah who is come, and he was furious. Type met antitype at this moment. The Passover lamb met the Lamb of God.
Yahshua on the other hand, passed under the Robinson’s Archway of the Royal Causeway and dismounted at the base of the assent to the Royal Stoa of the Temple. Up the vast gateway he climbed. This entry gate was awe-inspiring with polished limestone capped with fold plated Corinthian capitals. Into the Royal Stoa, he strode. It was a long hallway straddled out before him with four broad columned aisles. There in the quietness of the Royal Stoa, in the stillness of the hour, in the Temple of his Father, He prayed. It was getting late, so He left the Temple and walked over to Bethany.
The next day, Yahshua returned to Jerusalem and entered the Temple. Along the street the merchants were setting up their stalls to begin the commercial activity of the day. The Lower Market was a very busy area. There were cheeses in mounds, baskets with all manner of fruit in them, jars with wine and various types of grain bread lying in piles on the side. Merchants from the east were unloading a wagon of silk, as farmers and traders jostled as they weaved in and out of the crowds. Here they came to a large plaza with a monumental stairway leading up to the Double Gate of the Temple Mount.
Straight ahead was the main entry into the Temple courts. This area should have been an area of peaceful repose, to bring one into a spirit of meditation before entering the House of the Lord (HaShem). Yet instead of the quiet meditation, He remembered there in the Royal Stoa, there was frenzied commotion. The clanging sounds and rabble of commercial activity abound. To the right and left were the moneychangers, exchanging the coin of the empire, each bearing the image of Caesar into the silver Temple shekel. The walls were lines with small cages of doves and pigeons, where the newly moms were bargaining for a thank offering to celebrate the happy conclusion of their pregnancy. Oxen and sheep were lining the halls bellowing in the aroma of a barnyard. Let us image the Houston Live Stock Show in the grandeur of the Temple of God, and we can visualize in part what Jesus saw.
Jesus squinted his eyes and then His face began to flush with anger. He picked up a whip and began to overturning tables, chasing out the merchants, with sheep, oxen, and pigeons careening in three dimensions. In a provocative show of force, he threw out the money exchangers and the commerce in the temple courts suddenly ceased.
For three days, the sacrificial system ceased and it appeared that Jesus had full control of the Temple compound. He spent the time preaching and healing the masses of pilgrims.
With an estimated one million attendees to the Passover, a three-day shutdown was a major financial blow to the High Priest Caiphas and the House of Ananus, along with the Sadducean authorities, who made millions of shekels for their own personal bank portfolios. Yet the Sadducean Temple guards, and the Roman cohort of troops (about 500), made no attempt to arrest Yahshua because they feared the people who were in sympathetic support of the ministry of Jesus.
Matthew 21:46-46 – “Now when the chief priests and Pharisees heard His parables, they perceived that He was speaking of them. But when they sought to lay hands on Him, they feared the multitudes, because they took Him for a prophet.”
Was Jesus the Nazarene an armed revolutionary? No! Though anti-Christian literature later would depict Him as such, we must understand the political and seething cauldron that Jerusalem was in that day. The Zealots as can be suspected (Luke 23:19) took advantage of the political environment to seal the perimeters of the city, in hopes of staging a political coup. They were hoping to force Yahshua to make a rightful claim to the throne of David. Knowing His allegiance with the multitudes, His powers over nature, His ability to heal, and raise the dead to life, there was every expectation that this claimant, Yahshua, would succeed and lay full claim to the Messianic legacy.
The Temple of Herod – Ebible of Model of the Jerusalem
Everything appears to go as planned by the Zealots, yet Jesus, when He took control of the Temple complex, instead of making an armed political coup against the Sadducean Temple Guard and the limited Roman garrison in the Antonia Tower, He instead began to heal the sick and minister to the spiritual and physical needs of the people. A live demonstration of the true “Kingdom of God” was demonstrated those three days prior to the Passover feast in the courtyard of the Temple.
There was always swift retribution to any aspirant to throne of David by the Romans, yet Jesus, recently anointed in Bethany, made a peaceful yet highly visible entrance as a new claimant to the throne of David. The governor of Judea, the Procurator Pilate, would later say, “I find no fault in him.” That a revolt was thwarted is known by the legal swap of Bar-Abbas , the grandson of Judas of Galilee, the famed revolutionary in 6 CE, who revolted with the census of Roman. Now his grandson was plotting an armed revolutionary overthrow of the Roman. While Bar-Abbas was set free, Yahshua was hung on a tree with two of Bar-Abbas revolutionists.
By the 14th of Nisan, the Zealot forces went into retreat without the full support of Yahshua and the thousands of the supporters of His cause. Jesus had come as the “Prince of Peace” not as a fiery messianic warlord, like David. The revolt in the making fizzled out. The price of the failed revolt, was the lifeless body of Judas, hanging from a tree in a potter’s field.
According to the Mosaic instructions on the observance of the Passover, the lamb was to be inspected by the High Priest and cohanim for four days before the Passover slaying of the lamb. For four days, Jesus was also inspected, interrogated, accosted, intimidated, and challenged by the Pharisees, scribes and lawyers.
From the 11th to the 14th of Nisan, the Passover lamb stood in the inner Temple arena and was scrutinized by the High Priest and Sadducees. On these same four days, Yahshua stood in the outer courts of the temple, ministering to the populous and repeatedly responding to the inspecting challenges by the rabbinic masters of law, halakhah, temple authority, and religious dogma, or eventually in the judgment hall of Pilate listening to the slanderous accusations against Him.
And so while the selected Pesach lamb was being examined by the temple authorities, during these same three days Yahshua was scrutinized on whether His teaching were according to the halakhah of the Torah. He was challenged on His spiritual and ancestral authority plus His civil responsibility as a dependant of Rome. Here He met face to face with His accusers which included the: the temple lawyers, the scribal codifiers of the law, the Pharisees of the House of Shammai who controlled the Synagogues in Judea in this era, the controlling Sadducean authorities of the House of Ananus and the Herodians who ruled parts of Judea as administrative representatives of Rome.
Bird's eye view of the court of Women (viz., beyond which women were not allowed to go) in the foreground and the court of Israel and the court of priests in the walled area beyond the semi-circular steps. – The Preterist Central
In the inner courts, the High Priest could find no fault with the selected Passover Lamb and on the 14th of Nisan, Passover, slew him on the altar of the Lord. On the outer courts of the Temple, the religious leaders and the civil governor could find no fault in Yahshua, and hung Him on one of two sites: the Mount of Olives at the site of where the “red heifer” was burnt and the ashes were collected or on Mount Moriah where Abraham slew the goat in substitution for his son, Isaac on the altar to the Lord.
To be Continued on Part Two
The Last Supper, the eve of the 14th of Nisan
Trial and Crucifixion of Yahshua (Jesus) on the 14th of Nisan
Passover High Sabbath and the Resurrection Day
Chronology of the Passion Week
Problems Solved with the Model of Yahshua Literally Fulfilling the Role of the Passover Lamb
The Spring Festival Cycle and the Life, Ministry, and Death of Yahshua
Problems Solved with the Model of Yahshua Literally Fulfilling the Role of the Divine Passover Lamb
Return to the Beginning
Index for “Looking at the Death of Yahshua (Jesus) from the
Perspective of First Century Judaism”
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Index for “The Divine Mission to Bring the “Good News” to the Gentiles”
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Letter of Rabbi Jacob Emden concerning Jesus the Nazarene -
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Index for “The Hebrew Nazarene Ecclesia of Jerusalem”
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Go to Part Six
Go to Part Seven
Go to Part Eight
Go to Part Nine
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Go to Part Eleven
Go to Part Twelve
Go to Part Thirteen
Go to Part Fourteen
Go to Part Fifteen
Go to Part Sixteen
Go to Part Seventeen
Go to Part Eighteen
Go to Part Nineteen
Go to Part Twenty
Index for “Spring Jewish Festivals – Passover and Pentecost”
“Looking at the Death of Yahshua (Jesus) from the Perspective of First Century Judaism”
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“Catastrophes and the Time of the End”
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“Looking backwards to the Redemption during the Exodus – Looking forward to the Restoration by the Messiah”
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When does the First Month of Nissan (Aviv) Begin?
The Epic Drama on the Passion of The Christ
Message from BibleSearchers
BibleSearchers scans the world for information that has relevance on the time of the end. It is our prayer that this will allow the believers in the Almighty One of Israel to “watch and be ready”. Our readiness has nothing to do trying to halt the progression of evil on our planet earth. In our readiness, we seek to be prepared for the coming of the Messiah of Israel so that goodness and evil will be manifested in its fullest. Our preparation is a pathway of spiritual readiness for a world of peace. Our defender is the Lord of hosts. The time of the end suggests that the Eternal One of Israel’s intent is to close out this chapter of earth’s history so that the perpetrators of evil, those that seek power, greed and control, will be eliminated from this planet earth. The wars of the heavens are being played out on this planet earth and humans will live through it to testify of the might, power, justice and the love of the God of Israel. In a world of corruption and disinformation, we cannot always know what the historical truth is and who is promoting evil or mis-information. We cannot guarantee our sources but we will always seek to portray trends that can be validated in the Torah and the testimony of the prophets of the Old and the New Testament.
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