Israel and Petra Tour Registration Now Open

Israel & Petra, Jordan Tour

April 19 - 30, 2018

 (12-day Jewish Roots tour)

Registration is now open.

We invite you to share the experience of a lifetime—a trip to the land of the Bible—where the Patriarchs of our faith have walked.  On this 12-day journey, visit Jerusalem with its garden tomb; see the Mount of Olives and the Garden of Gethsemene, and Caesarea by the Sea; visit Megiddo where the Battle of Armageddon will take place, float in the Dead Sea, view the Mt. of Beatitudes; stand on Mt. Nebo where Moses overlooked the Promised Land, get baptized in the Jordan River, take a Cable Car up to Masada, witness Ein Gedi where David fled from Saul; see the Qumran Caves, kayak in the Sea of Galilee, and visit the village of Nazareth where Jesus lived. We will visit Petra, Jordan as well!

Our tour has a "Jewish roots" focus with optional Sabbath (Shabbat) worship services and optional Davidic Dancing opportunities. 

For those interested in more information and who live in the southern California area, we will be having several Information Meetings. Our first meeting will be Saturday, July 22nd at 12:45 pm at Ben David Messianic Jewish Congregation in the back of the sanctuary. The meeting will last no more than 45 minutes, depending on the questions asked. Please email info@SongForIsrael.org for more information.

To view the full itinerary and obtain more information, please click here.

 

 

 

The Temple Mount Location in Question

Amazon Prime offers a movie (also on DVD) called Jerusalem and the Lost Temple of the Jews, which discusses where the first two temples were built and where a third might be built before the Messiah's return.

You may have heard for years that the currently named "Temple Mount" may not be the correct location. This movie uses as its main sources: The Bible, The Works of Josephus the Historian, and the Book of Maccabees.

According to this documentary, It is quite possible that the Temple Mount is actually 1/3 of a mile south of the currently-named Temple Mount, located in the City of David. Here is a summary of the evidence:

1. The Bible says in Matthew 24:1-2 that as Jesus went out from the temple with His disciples. He pointed to the temple buildings and said to them…”Assuredly, I say to you, not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down.” Jesus was prophesying about the destruction of the temple in 70 AD. Jerusalem and her temple were, in fact, destroyed just as Jesus predicted. However, when you look today at the “temple mount,” you will see its Western Walls still standing. These walls are what supported the “temple mount,” and according to Jesus, not one stone should be stacked upon another. This fact raises a question, is this the right location?

Herod built two fortresses – one was the Antonia Fortress. He also built the Jewish Temple. When Titus destroyed Jerusalem, he destroyed the temple, down to the foundations. Many stones left in the walls are still standing - 10,000 of them. Either Jesus was not precise (which we know can’t be right) or we are missing something. Archaeologists say that these stones were not destroyed because we are looking at Antonia's Fortress, which is outside the City of Jerusalem. The Antonia Fortress is located just north of David's City and was built to accommodate a legion of Roman soldiers. The currently-named Temple Mount is the site of Herod’s Antonia Fortress.

Josephus.jpg

2. Josephus was a Jewish historian who wrote in the late 1st century. He was an eyewitness for the period of time when Jerusalem was destroyed. He was from the tribe of Levi – a Priestly family. He could have served in the temple. The Romans gave him access to the high court records of Herod and to the temple books. Josephus wrote a detailed account of the size and proportions of the temple and the Antonia’s Fortress. Antonia's Fortress was used to house 6,000 troops of the 10th Legion. This Fortress was a 35-acre site and much larger than the temple. However, if you visit the temple mount today, the so-called Antonia’s Fortress is much, much smaller than the temple could have been. In addition, the Fortress wall protrudes from the wall, whereas Josephus states it is flush with the wall. The southeast tower was 1.3 larger than the other 3 towers so they could view the temple.

Holyland model of  jerusalem

Holyland model of  jerusalem

The Holyland Model of Jerusalem is a 1:50 scale-model of the City of Jerusalem of the late 2nd Temple period, created by Israeli historial and geographer Michael Avi-Yonah, based on the writings of Josephus. Some use this model as historically accurate, however, it does not exactly match the dimensions Josephus wrote about.

Josephus claims that Antonia's Fortress is flush with the wall. The Fortress sat on a 35-acre parcel of land, not just a little fortress attached to the wall.

A sample of a colonnade

A sample of a colonnade

3. Another issue with using the Holyland Model for accuracy are the two 600-ft. colonnades mentioned by Josephus in the section called Wars of the Jews. These two colannades (called arms) denote a long sequence of columns. They joined the Temple Mount buildings with Antonia's Fortress, connecting on the Northwest corner of the temple. They were 50 cubits high and built on a rock that was 75 ft. in height. These do not appear in the Holyland Model and are significant as a major battle took place on these colonnades. Titus watched this battle take place. There is no such rock at the Temple Mount. According to Josephus, Jerusalem was built upon two hills opposite one another. On one of these hills is where the upper city called the Citadel by King David s located. The Valley of the Cheesemongers (later called the Tyropoeon Valley) was in the middle of the two hills.

4.  An archaeological dig unearthed of a 7th-century market called the cardo which was built by Justinian. Stairs lead down 20 feet, but the city was buried deeper than that during the first century. The Old City wasn’t in this location, but Southeast of there. It was called the City of David. 

5. More evidence that the Temple Mount is not where it is said to be today can be found in writings left from the few survivors of Masada who wrote about the destruction of Jerusalem. They state that the temple and the city were completely destroyed and the only thing remaining of significance was Antonia’s Fortress. The Fortress was not considered part of Jerusalem because it was outside of the city. It is now believed that the currently-named Western Wall (i.e. Wailing Wall) is actually the fortification that supported Antonia's Fortress and not the Temple. 

Hezekiah's tunnel

Hezekiah's tunnel

6. The discovery of Hezekiah’s tunnel that led to the waterway was an important archaeological discovery. It was built in 700 BC by Hezekiah to rechannel the water from the Gihon Spring from the outside to inside in order to protect their water source from invaders. The discovery of Hezekiah's tunnel proves that the City of David was just above this tunnel. It proves that the City of David is on the southeast ridge and not the southwest hill. The "City of David" was synonymous with "Mount Zion" and the Jewish Temple. Solomon, David's son, built the Temple over the Gihon Spring. There was no other source of water for Jerusalem within a five-mile radius.

7.  In the time of Simon the Hasmonean, the current temple mount was not the highest mountain. Mt. Zion is where the Temple was located. The Temple was descrated by Greeks during the time of the Maccabees. Simon the Hasmonean decided to remove Mt. Zion. He leveled the land and threw it into the Tyropeon and Kidron Valleys. He filled up the valley with the earth and wanted to join the upper city with the Temple. The name Mt. Zion was transferred to the western hill and the city expanded to the west. This explains why this mountain cannot be seen today. What you see now is not what Josephus was talking about. It is difficult to look at Jerusalem today and picture what the geography used to be. We must rely on historical resources rather than on what we see.

Today tunnels lead to the foundation blocks of the "so-called Temple Mount." There are massive rocks in these tunnels. The Antonia Fortress is said to have been built on a plateau that was higher than the City of David. There are no other foundation blocks like this that have been found. Josephus calls this the third hill. The apex of this rock is where the Dome of the Rock is located. This is the Antonia Fortress.

The City of David is built on land in the shape of a crescent (according to The Works of Josephus). Satellite photos show the crescent ridge. It stretched from the Kidron to the Tyropoean Valleys and was built over the Gihon spring. The Temple Mount extended from one valley to the other and could not be extended further. The City of David is exactly 600 feet across. However, the currently-called Temple Mount is 900 feet across. This is just one more piece of evidence that this land has been misnamed.

If the above findings are true, then the currently-named location of the Temple Mount is false and has clouded truth, keeping the Jewish people from locating the proper site for their Temple. It seems that the problem has been that "tradition trumps eyewitness and historical records," according to the DVD. The Book of Maccabees also contributes details to the geography during the Second Temple period.

The DVD is based on the findings of Dr. Ernest Martin, who provides the following sketch of the Temple and the Antonia Fortress. Dr. Martin's book is called The Temples Israel Forgot.

Martin's Drawing.jpg

Today, there is excavating going on in the City of David. Some of the findings are evidence that this is actually where the Temple was located. Once the Jewish people determine where their Temple belongs, they can rebuilt it. The glory of Jerusalem will return!

I will be in Israel next month and plan to visit the excavated areas in the City of David. It is my hope to be able to visit with some of the archaeologists there to learn more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recommended Reading: "Night" by Elie Wiesel

Night is a work by Elie Wiesel about his experience with his father in the Nazi German concentration camps at Auschwitz, Bund, and Buchenwald in 1944–1945, at the height of the Holocaust toward the end of the Second World War. 

I just finished reading this book and find it astonishing that any human being could treat another with such disdain - such hatred - just because they are Jewish. 

This is a short little book written by Elie Wiesel, who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986 for speaking out against violence, repression, and racism.

Night.jpg

Feast of Pentecost (in Hebrew "Shavuot") Began May 30th

May 30th was the first night of Shavuout, which in Greek means “Pentecost,” also often referred to as the “Feast of Weeks.” On Shavuot, the Jewish people celebrate the events that took place on Mt. Sinai. In Exodus 19, when God descended on Mt. Sinai, thunder ripped throughout the sky, the ground shook, and a shofar blew a long blast. A dense cloud of smoke and fire surrounded the summit because the Lord descended on it. No one was to touch the mountain; not even animals. To disobey meant certain death. Moses spent 40 days up on the mountain where he received God’s law. God’s promise to the Israelites was that from that day forward, if they were to fully obeyed the covenant, they would be a nation of priests.

The Israelites immediately disobeyed. When Moses came down from the mountain and saw them worshipping idols. Moses allowed the Levites to take up their swords and 3000 who did not follow the Lord were killed that day.

Approximately 1300 years later came the Day of Pentecost (the Greek word for Shavuot). The Disciples were observant Jews and came to Jerusalem, celebrating the anniversary of the covenant. Jews were required to come to the temple three times a year to celebrate and Shavuot was one of these occasions. From all over the world, they came to celebrate the anniversary of their covenant with God.

In Acts 2, we read that a violent wind came from heaven and filled whole house. As Tongues of Fire came to rest on each them, they were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages. Peter commissions the crowd saying, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.” (Acts 2: 38-39)

Three thousand became believers that day. Ephesians 2 speaks to the Gentiles (anyone other than a Jew) and explains that Gentiles were “strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were cut off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For He Himself is our peace, who made both groups into one….and might reconcile them both in one body to God through the cross….”

Leviticus 23:17 says “You shall bring in from your dwelling places two loaves of bread for a wave offering….” The two loaves would be lifted high, one in each hand and waved as arms were crossed in the air. This wave offering of the two loaves is represented in Pentecost where the two groups, Jews and Gentiles, were brought together!

The feasts and festivals of the Bible are filled with types and symbols that point to the Messiah. The connections between Shavuot and Pentecost are obvious and exciting. Here are some parallels.

Moses acted as an intercessor between God and His covenanted people. Jesus intervened on behalf of the world.

At Mt. Sinai, the fire descended only on the summit of the mountain with Moses. Fire (the Holy Spirit) came to rest on each individual.

God established His covenant with the Hebrew people. God’s covenant was made available to all who believe.

The Holy Law was inscribed on stone by the finger of God. The Holy Spirit wrote the Law on their hearts.

At Mt. Sinai 3,000 were killed due to their disobedience. In Jerusalem 3000 were granted salvation in return for their faith.

God declared the Israelites a nation of priests. Believers became priests to all the nations.

This explains one covenant grafted into the first. We celebrate the common anniversary of our receiving God’s revelation at both at Mt. Sinai in Jerusalem.

Today, as believers, we celebrate on Shavuot the outpouring of the Ruach HaKodesh, the Holy Spirit. According to tradition, dairy foods such as cheese, cheesecake and milk are eaten on Shavuot because Torah is compared to the sweetness of milk and honey. In Ecclesiastes, one line reads "Honey and milk are under your tongue." In some communities children are introduced to Torah study on Shavuot and are given honey cakes with passages from the Torah written on them.

Let us use this feast to make a public commitment, just as the people of Israel did, that "we will do and we will listen."

Chag Sameach

חג שבועות שמח 

Jerusalem of Gold

The name of this beautiful song is "Jerusalem of Gold." English lyrics are below. Click here for information about our next tour to Israel.

JERUSALEM OF GOLD
by Naomi Shemer

This version appears, inter alia, in Landmarks:  Resource material, poetry, songs, games and activities, edited by Avi Tsur,
and published by the Israeli Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport, in 1998 in Jerusalem:  103.

But when I come to count your praises
And sing Hallel to you
With pretty rhymes I dare not crown you
As other poets do,
Upon my lips is always burning
Your name, so dear, so old:
If I forget Yerushalaim
Of bronze and light and gold ...

Yerushalaim all of gold
Yerushalaim, bronze and light
Within my heart I shall treasure
Your song and sight.

Back to the wells and to the fountains
Within the ancient walls
The sound of horn from Temple's mountain
Again so loudly calls,
From rocky caves, this very morning
A thousand suns will glow
And we shall go down to the Jordan
By way of Jericho.

Yerushalaim all of gold
Yerushalaim, bronze and light
Within my heart I shall treasure
Your song and sight.

Jerusalem Day

On May 24th, Jews around the world gather together in spirit to celebrate Jerusalem Day (in Hebrew: Yom Yerushalayim).

Jewish people were forced to leave the land they loved in 70 AD and for over 2,000 years, they have prayed and longed to return to Jerusalem.  The Holy City had been divided between Israel and Jordan after Israel proclaimed its independence in 1948, and the Arab nations attacked Israel.

During the 1948 War of Independence, Jordan took control of the Old City of Jerusalem where the first and second Temples once stood. Fifty years ago, Israel reunified its most cherished city, Jerusalem. In the Six-Day War of 1967, 182 Israeli Defense Force (IDF) soldiers sacrificed their lives in the bloody battle over that city. Jerusalem was, once again, under Jewish sovereignty for the first time in 2,000 years! They continue to protect and defend Jerusalem today. Please pray for the safety of all soldiers in Israel.

Jews around the world chant, "next year in Jerusalem."
 




 

Major Problems With the Statement of Palestinian President Abbas

President Donald Trump last week met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. What Abbas said reveals just how deep the gulf remains between the Israelis and the Palestinians. Immediately after his opening greetings, Abbas had this to say: "Mr. President, our strategic choice is to bring about peace based on the vision of the two states - a Palestinian state with its capital in East Jerusalem that lives in peace and stability with the state of Israel based on the borders of 1967." Talk about a slap in the face. First, Israel's 1967 borders are indefensible, as was reiterated in 2011 after President Obama seemed to advocate a return to those borders. To give one example of indefensible borders, the Netanya area of Israel would be less than 10 miles wide. Second, dividing Jerusalem will not lead to lasting peace, and it is only the Jewish people, not the Palestinians, who have a true historic claim to the city as their capital. As PM Netanyahu has said, "The idea of a divided, split, wounded city is one we will never return to."

President Abbas then emphasized the desire of his people to have a two-state solution, expressing real hope that President Trump would help broker a lasting peace agreement. "Mr. President, it's about time for Israel to end its occupation of our people and of our land after 50 years. We are aspiring and want to achieve our freedom and our right to self-determination. And we also want for Israel to recognize the Palestinian state just as the Palestinian people recognize the state of Israel." This paragraph is also fraught with problems: First, the reason for the so-called occupation is: 1. the refusal of Arab leadership to agree to previous two-state offers, first in 1937 and then in 1947; 2. the attempted Arab destruction of Israel in 1967, which Israel preempted with the Six Day War, expanding its borders in the process and 3. ongoing Arab and Palestinian attacks on the Jewish people, because of which Israel has maintained control in Judea and Samaria. To lay the blame on Israel is to have the situation backward. Second, it is misleading to speak of Palestinian recognition of Israel. Has President Abbas, in Arabic, recognized Israel as a Jewish state? And if not, what does this imply? And what about a report from early this year stating that PA textbooks "ignore the existence of Israel"?

But the worst of President Abbas' remarks was still to come. He said, "Mr. President, I affirm to you that we are raising our youth, our children, our grandchildren on a culture of peace." A culture of peace? By naming schools after Palestinian terrorists? By celebrating them as martyrs and making them heroes for the children to emulate? By spreading false information about Israel and the Temple Mount that so provoked Palestinian young people that teens as young as 13 engaged in acts of terror? (Charisma) “Not a word from their mouth can be trusted; their heart is filled with malice. Their throat is an open grave; with their tongues they tell lies,” Ps. 5:30 (J. Post)

This article is copied from JNN NEWS, P.O. Box 7411, Jerusalem 91073, Israel and published with permission.

Song For Israel Celebrates Six Years!

Today SFI celebrates her sixth anniversary. As we continue to proclaim God's eternal plan for Israel, today we pause to thank God for His blessings to us! Celebrate with us by reviewing some of our accomplishments through our photographs below. If you have participated in our ministry, please comment below. It will be such an encouragement to our team!

If you were not in one of these pictures, it's time for you to get involved! 

WALK FOR ISRAEL - MAY 1, 5:30 pm

Song For Israel will be sponsoring a WALK FOR ISRAEL on Monday, May 1, 2017, beginning at 5:30 pm, meeting in the Blue Agave Restaurant parking lot. We will be carrying flags and signs celebrating Israel's Independence Day. It will be a light walk in Yorba Linda and for only 30-40 minutes (walking very slowly). The purpose is to show support for Israel on their Independence Day. Some signs and Israeli flags will be provided, but we encourage you to bring your own. Please wear blue and white. KIDS ARE WELCOME!

Meet in front of the Blue Agave Restaurant at 18601 Yorba Linda Blvd, Yorba Linda, California 92886. Optional -- you may join us for dinner at Blue Agave after the walk. If you would like to join us for dinner after the walk at the Blue Agave Restaurant, please click here to register.

Enjoy the pictures below from the Walk For Israel 2015 and 2016.

Leo Scheuer...A Holocaust Survivor Story

IMG_3689.JPG

When I was in Germany, a friend and I went to the German Jewish museum and I took this picture and I copied the story: “Leo Scheuer worked as a doctor in eastern Poland, which the Soviet army occupied at the start of the war. German troops took control of the area in June 1941 and put the Jews living there in a ghetto. In the fall of 1942 orders were given to shoot all the ghetto residents, but Leo Scheuer managed to flee to the home of a former patient, who hid him in his yard. He survived in a hole in the ground for fifteen months before Soviet soldiers liberated the area and he could emerge from his self-confinement. These phylacteries were among the few objects that Leo Scheuer had with him in his hiding place. They are worn on the head and arm for morning prayers and recall the deliverance of the Israelites from Egyptian bondage.

In 1965 Leo Scheuer immigrated from the Soviet Union to the DGR. In 2002 he died in the Bush district of Berlin at the age of ninety-three.”

Holocaust Memorial Day - Remembering Eva Been

Although much of today's world rejects the notion that the Holocaust even occurred, the evening of Sunday, April 23rd through Monday, April 24th,, is considered to be Holocaust Remembrance Day (in Hebrew--Yom HaShoah). It is a sad day as many still have memories of the evils done to family members and friends. Still others question how such evil could be allowed to occur in our world. but it did happen.

When I visited the Simon Wiesenthal Center I was given a little card with the name and picture of a little girl who lived during the Holocaust. Eva Been was a darling girl from The Netherlands. She came from a normal family where her father was a high school teacher in Northern Holland. The Jews of The Netherlands were well-integrated into the general population and they were active in all aspects of the country's social, cultural and economic life. 

Eva Beem (From the Archives of the Simon Wiesenthal Center)

Eva Beem (From the Archives of the Simon Wiesenthal Center)

Eva was eight years old when the Germans invaded her town and separated the Jews and forced them into restricted ghetto areas. Eva's parents decided they would go into hiding, hoping their children would be safer posing as non-Jews in a rural village. They found a Christian family willing to risk death to save them. Eva was given a new name and identity and attended school with others from the village.

The Nazis realized that many Jewish children had been sent into hiding and therefore intensified their search. Eleven-year old Eva and her brother Abraham were arrested and ultimately deported to Auschwitz Concentration Camp in Poland. Both were murdered upon their arrival.

Eva was one of 1.5 million Jewish children murdered by the Germans and their collaborators during the Holocaust.

Today, Israel and the Jewish people are still targets in the world with their neighbors in Iran chanting "Death to Israel" and "Drive them into the Sea." It is horrible to think such things still take place, but another Holocaust could happen. Satan would like nothing more than to defeat God's plan for Israel. Song For Israel exists to educate people about God's eternal plan for Israel from a biblical viewpoint. We stand with Israel. Will you?

Please consider making a donation to help further our ministry. Please click here.

Holocaust Remembrance Day

Photo Taken at the Berlin Jewish Museum

Photo Taken at the Berlin Jewish Museum

Tonight marks Holocaust Remembrance Day, which in Hebrew is called “Yom HaShoah” and is a solemn date when Israel remembers the 6,000,000 Jews killed in the Holocaust. This morning in Israel, every vehicle will stop and humans will stand at attention for two minutes while sirens sound, in remembrance.

Auschwitz

Auschwitz

Auschwitz was the biggest Nazi concentration camp in Europe during World War II.  More than 1,100,000 men, women, and children lost their lives here.  While multiple tracks led into these extermination camps, no one ever came out on them.

Six Million Jews (half of the world’s Jewish population at the time) perished under Hitler’s Final Solution.  

Check back tomorrow for more Holocaust articles. 

Counting the Omer to the Day of Pentecost

During the Feast of First Fruits, God told Moses to speak to the children of Israel and have them bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of their harvest to the priest, according to Leviticus 23:9-17; 21. The priest would then wave the sheaf before the Lord on the day after the Passover Sabbath. From this date, they were to count the days for seven Sabbaths. On the fiftieth day, they would celebrate the day of Pentecost - also known as Shavuot or Feast of Weeks.

           An "omer" -- a sheaf of wheat

           An "omer" -- a sheaf of wheat

The time counted between Passover and Pentecost was called “counting the omer.” An “Omer” is a sheaf of barley and wheat – the first of the harvest - and it was waved before the Lord. Pentecost does not have a fixed calendar date in the Bible but is observed after completing the counting of the omer.

Just as the firstfruits contains a promise of not only looking forward to the early harvest but also to the day of redemption -The number “50” symbolizes freedom and redemption.

We see in the New Testament that Christ is both Lord of the harvest and of firstfruit. The Feast of Firstfruits was fulfilled in the resurrection of Christ as the Firstborn from the dead. Passover was fulfilled as Christ is seen as the Passover Lamb (a sign of His death). But at the Feast of Firstfruits, He is seen as the risen Savior. After counting the omer, we will celebrate the Day of Pentecost as it was fulfilled in Acts 2 when the Holy Spirit (Ruach HaKodesh) was given to all who believe.

 

The Feast of Unleavened Bread

The Feast of Unleavened Bread is part of Passover -- It is actually concurrent with Passover. The seven days following Passover, the Jews ate only unleavened bread (no yeast) with their meals. Prior to Passover, they cleanse all yeast from their homes. In Scripture, leaven is a picture of sin. Removing all leaven from the home is a picture of cleansing one’s life of sin.

The celebration of Passover was to remind the Jewish people of the time when they had to leave in such a hurry that there was no time for their bread to rise; and a reminder of their deliverance from Egypt.

On the first and seventh day of the feast, the people were to hold a sacred assembly. They were reminded of the Exodus because it was the greatest demonstration of God’s deliverance in the Old Testament. God wanted His people to know and trust Him as the God who delivers. The focus is the same year after year.

God declared that eating the Passover meal with its special unleavened bread was the sign of faith that indicated you were a true member of the covenant community of Israel. 

Prophetic Fulfillment -- Jesus knew no sin, nor was any deceit found in Him. He was unblemished and spotless. He was made sin for us that we could be made the righteousness of God in Him. Purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, since you truly are unleavened. For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us. Therefore, let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth (1 Corinthians 5:7-8). Unleavened bread, or matzah, has stripes. 

By His stripes we are healed. Matzah is also pierced. They shall look upon me whom they have pierced. Matzah is pure, without any leaven, as His body was without any sin. The custom during Passover is to bury (fold in a towel), hide, and then resurrect the second of the three pieces of matzah (matzot, plural), which is the middle piece, representing the Gospel (Afikomen). The Jewish people today act out Christ’s resurrection and don’t even know it!

The exodus of Israel in the Old Testament is an illustration of God’s salvation. The New Testament crucifixion was the ultimate exodus because it delivers not just from the bondage of a controlling Pharaoh, but from bondage to sin itself. It provides for eternal life, not just life in an earthly promised land.

Scripture References

Old Testament: Exodus 12:14-20; Leviticus 23:6-8; Deuteronomy 16:8

New Testament: 1 Corinthians 5:7-8, 2 Corinthians 5:21, 6:14-7:1; Philippians 1:21, 2:3-5, 3:8, 4:13

The Symbolism of the Passover Matzah Points to Messiah

Part of the Passover Seder includes the matzah, in which three pieces are wrapped together -- three pieces of matzah, each in a separate section, yet joined into one. The rabbis call these three “a unity.” Some consider it a unity of the three patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Others consider it representative of the trinity—The Father, Son and Holy Spirit—Three in one.

The matzah is unleavened. Throughout the Scripture, leaven is a symbol of fermentation and corruption and is a symbol of sin. For example, in Leviticus 2:11 we read: No grain offering, which you bring to the Lord, shall be made with leaven, for you shall not offer up in smoke any leaven…as an offering by fire to the Lord.  This offering was to be made without leaven as a symbol that it was holy before the Lord.

Exodus 13:6-7 tells us that only unleavened bread should be eaten at Passover. Since leaven is a symbol of sin, to begin the Passover season by eating only unleavened bread is symbolic of beginning a life free from sin. Jesus was our perfect example of this because he lived a sinless life.

When the Jewish people were leaving Egypt, God was about to give them His Torah which was to be their guide for holy living. It may be that this was to signify the start of their living lives separate from sin.

Paul wrote of this significance in the New Testament in 1 Corinthians 6:6-8: Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump of dough? Clean out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, just as you are in fact unleavened. For Messiah our Passover has been sacrificed. Let us therefore celebrate the feast (Passover), not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

If we examine the matzah carefully, we see that not only is it unleavened, but it is pierced and striped. King David wrote prophetically of the Messiah in Psalm 22: For dogs have surrounded me; a band of evildoers has encompassed me; They pierced my hands and my feet.

Zechariah also prophesied about what would be done to the Messiah when he wrote: 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 an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him, like the bitter weeping over a first-born (Zech 12:10).

Isaiah wrote prophetically of the coming Suffering Servant of Israel, the One would be not only sinless, but “pierced” and “striped:” 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 stripes we are healed (Isaiah 53:5).

Jesus, the Messiah, was without sin, yet He was “striped” by way of the Roman whip, and “pierced” by nails through His hands and feet and by a spear in His side. It is not a coincidence that the central item of the Passover, the matzah, points to the One that Paul called “Messiah our Passover.” Each year, the matzah points to One who was sinless, striped, and pierced - the same One whom John the Baptist called “the Lamb of God” - the One whose sacrifice would bring redemption from the penalty of sin. 

During the Passover meal, the father in the family breaks the middle matzah in two, places the smaller piece on top of the matzah cloth and wraps the larger piece, which is called the “afikomen,” in the clean, white linen cloth which is next to the matzah cloth. The Hebrew word “afikomen” is most likely derived from the Greek word “epikomos” which means “after a banquet,” or “dessert.”

Then, the children leave the room and while they are gone, the leader “buries” (hides) the afikomen, this wrapped piece of matzah, somewhere in the room. Then the children return.  They are encouraged sometime during the meal to earnestly search for the “buried treasure” of unleavened bread which is striped and pierced, wrapped in cloth, buried, earnestly sought, and when discovered, found to be of great value. This clearly parallels the events surrounding the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus.

There are many other components to the Passover Seder that point to Jesus Christ as Messiah. But just this one section with the afikomen clearly symbolizes Jesus Christ, the Messiah.  

Jewish people around the world explain to their families every Passover about the afikomen and its symbolism. The entire Passover is pointing to Jesus Christ, who has already come as Messiah and fulfilled the symbolism. When we take communion, we read from 1 Corinthians 11:24: “And when He had given thanks, He broke it, and said, Take, eat, this is My body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of Me.”

Passover is the reminder of a sinless sacrifice made on our behalf. When the afikomen is eaten at the conclusion of the meal, it is a reminder of the sacrificial lamb which was eaten. Consider the symbolism of the matzah: unleavened, striped, pierced, broken, wrapped in a white linen cloth, “buried,” diligently sought, with a reward going to the discoverer. Now, it is freely offered, but as with all free gifts, one must accept it - otherwise it cannot be enjoyed.