What is a “Messianic Passover Haggadah”
What is a Passover Haggadah for Christians and Jews?
And what does “Messianic” even mean?
For a quick recap of why we even have a Haggadah, let’s start at the beginning….
About 1,450 years BCE (before the common era) the Israelites were held in Egyptian slavery. The book of Exodus gives us details as to what it was like for the Israelites during that time.
“So they [the Egyptians] put slave masters over them to oppress them with forced labor….” (Exodus 1:11)
It was not a very good situation for the Israelites. They cry out for deliverance and ultimately Moses (Hebrew: Moshe) is sent by God to deliver His people from Egypt.
Pharaoh, at first, seems to think this is all a joke. His own magicians can duplicate some of the things Moses is doing. But as the miracles (think plagues) become bigger and bigger, Pharaoh’s magicians realize that this is “the finger of God” (Exodus 8:19), but Pharaoh’s heart is hard and he will not let them go free.
Plague after plague occurs over time and still, he will not let them go.
Finally, the last plague (and worst one) was slaying of the firstborn son.
In one night, all the firstborn sons of Egypt were found dead. The Israelites were protected, however, because they put the blood of a spotless lamb on their doorposts the evening before. This made God “Passover” their houses and protect them from judgment.
After this plague, the nation of Israel was told by Pharaoh to pack up and finally “Leave!”
Yet, when Pharaoh comes to his senses and realizes his work force has just vacated his land, his heart is hardened yet again and follows Israel to the Sea.
God does a miracle there and the sea opens after a powerful wind blows “all that night.”
“Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and all that night the Lord drove the sea back with a strong east wind and turned it into dry land. The waters were divided, and the Israelites went through the sea on dry ground, with a wall of water on their right and on their left.” (Exodus 14:21-22)
Of course, when Pharaoh and his army try to follow, they are drown and that is the last Israel will see of their taskmasters.
And this is where the Haggadah comes in…. God told the Israelites to have a commemorative event each year on the anniversary date.
“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.” (Exodus 12:14)
And the Haggadah is just that… a booklet which takes you through the service remembering the above Exodus details with food and song!
So what is a “Messianic” Haggadah you may ask?
Well, a growing number of Jewish people believe that the Messiah has come to Israel and that His name in Hebrew was Yeshua. (That is the Jewish name of Jesus. He was Jewish and lived in Israel after all. You did know that, right?)
And as you might have guessed, the word “Messianic” comes from the word “Messiah.” Therefore, a “Messianic Jew” is a Jewish person who believes that the Messiah has already arrived and His name is Yeshua (Jesus)!
Our “Messianic” Haggadah follows the same pattern as the traditional Jewish ones, however, we additionally show how Yeshua (Jesus) celebrated it with His disciples (Hebrew: talmidim – תלמידםtalmidim) at what is commonly called “The Last Supper”.
We also believe that Yeshua (Jesus) is the fulfillment of the lamb that was slain to protect people from judgment.
One final note: Notice the lamb’s blood was placed upon the Israelites doorposts and lintel. Dripping from the top, in a very real sense – it would have formed a cross. Today, it is the blood of the Lamb of God, Yeshua / Jesus, placed upon the doorposts of our hearts today that protects us from the judgment of God. (And trust that God knows EVERYTHING about you and I that deserve judgment, but He would rather “Passover” you, than judge you.)
And that is why He sent the Messiah!
“He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter…” (Isaiah 53:7)
Written seven centuries before Yeshua (Jesus).
So let’s recap – In Egypt, the “spotless” lamb died and its blood was placed on the door. Only then did no judgment enter. And that, my friend, is why Jesus being the Messiah is so, so important. The Messiah died so that we would not have to endure God’s judgment for our sins after death. He was our substitute.
Do you believe this? If not – then you are not saved from His judgment.
OR – Are you willing to let Yeshua (Jesus) be the servant He was foretold to be by Isaiah and let Him be your Passover lamb.
Just say this simple prayer from your heart and lips… “God, I am living apart from You. I am sorry for my sins. I turn from them. I need the Passover lamb – the Messiah in my life. Yeshua (Jesus) I believe you are alive and I ask You to enter into my heart right now. I trust in You to save me from my sins, both now and forever. Amen.”
If you prayed that prayer – let us know so that we can rejoice with you!
Here are a few sample pages from our Messianic Haggadah. We have also included transliteration (Hebrew spelled in English letters) for the main blessings and songs for the Seder.