According to Rabbi Jack Abramowitz, “On the night of the first Seder in Egypt, God did not even permit the angel of death into Jewish homes on “business as usual.” On that night, no Jew died of any cause.” Read More
As instructed by God, they put the blood of a slain ram (considered a deity by the Egyptians) over and on the sides of their door posts so the death angel would see it and pass over the home.
The same night, the night of the last supper Jesus and his disciples passed the Seder bread and drank from the Seder cups commemorating this very evening. Soon they would take a walk to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray and remember the night. The Jewish custom on this night was to stay awake through the night. This was not just any night they would remember, but a special night where every Jew had been guarded by God. It was a night that would continue to be remembered in Jewish history and be a night that every believer in Jesus should remember and celebrate as HOLY. It would be the night that Jesus was arrested, whipped, beaten, and made a sacrifice upon a cross, for the sins of the world. This was another important night, not just for the Jew, but also for the Gentile and like before it was guarded by God.
Perhaps it was the wine that made the disciples sleepy, or perhaps it was the seriousness of the conversation. Passover was a holiday celebration that every Jew would know the meaning. Passover evening was a night guarded by God. Perhaps it was knowing Jesus was explaining to them that no matter what, stay alert, stay awake, because a slaying was approaching. This night would like the night that Israel was liberated from Egypt, and no matter how terrible, the night would be guarded by God himself.
Earlier in the evening, Jesus would have shared the story of the Passover and how the death angel had passed over their ancestor’s homes, and they were instructed to flee from Egypt and follow Moses into the promised land. This was a night of deliverance and freedom for the Jewish people.
He would also explain how He would lay himself down before the world as the one, the only and final sacrificial lamb for the sins of all mankind.
I imagine this was a lot for their minds to take in. After all they had already been through so much together. One week the crowds were waving palm fronds and laying down their coats on the ground before Jesus, and then there were the rumors the religious leaders and the mobs were out to arrest and kill them all.
Jesus’ enemy hadn’t rallied a mob, but quietly and methodically in plain sight slaughtered a ram (considered sacred and deities by the Egyptians) and painted it’s blood over their doorposts before the Seder dinner. I imagine it was difficult to sleep that night as God poured out His wrath over the countryside. This is a difficult concept for us today that God would deliver His followers without one drop of their blood being shed.
Finally, not only did the Egyptians not attack the Jews on their way out of Egypt, not even a dog barked at them.Exodus 11:7
As the Egyptians awoke and found their dead, the wailing of a nation began. This was a nation with many gods and not one of them had protected them against the Yahweh, the God of Israel. A night guarded by God.
Since I have been in Kenya with my children and my grandchildren, we have been adjusting to being quarantined, and getting used to life in Africa. There are many nights that feel and sound very different than my nights back in the United States. One difference is the guard dogs barking. When I hear them, it gives me a little sense of peace and protection knowing they are roaming the property and on watch. The night of Passover the Israelites left and Scripture tells us that not even the sound of a dog barking could be heard. God was guarding their escape. For me and for my children and grandchildren this gives me much peace knowing God is watching over me while He has called me to be here in Kenya. I am so thankful that Maverick and Amy, Jonah, Hudson and Ava are also being guarded by God, not just on one night but every night. To learn more about their ministry visit their website MavandAmy.com and also the many lives being transformed at the Challenge Farm in Kitale, Kenya.