Shalom and happy Passover! This is a wonderful time of the year for both Jewish people and Christians who know the fulfillment of the Passover through Jesus the Messiah. This year, Your Mission to the Jewish People will be presenting what we call “Messiah in the Passover” at almost a thousand churches during the next few months. Our various Messianic congregations will sponsor Passover Seders (Banquets) as well, and so will many local churches and Jewish ministries.
You can also find out if there is a Messianic Seder being held in your community sometime over the next month. The event could be sponsored by a local Messianic congregation, Jewish ministry or even a local church. As a Jewish believer in Jesus, I can tell you from personal experience that “Messiah in the Passover” is an eye-opening presentation for many Jewish people – and many believers as well!
My First “Messiah in the Passover”
I still remember the first time I watched a Jewish believer present a Passover demonstration at a church. Even though I was a new believer, I was able to understand the symbolism of the Passover Seder and apply it to my understanding of Jesus. He is the Lamb of God, the unleavened bread of life that was pierced, and His shed blood is memorialized by the cup of the New Covenant. There is so much more to tell, as the parallels between the Passover and the Lord’s Supper are extraordinary.
Most of all, I hope you will be courageous and bold and invite your Jewish friends to a Messianic Passover Seder during this time of the year. You can locate a Chosen People Ministries sponsored Passover Seder by going to our website, chosenpeople.com/seder, or contact our church ministries office at firstname.lastname@example.org. In Canada, please call 1-888-442-5535. They will let you know if we are having an event in your area. Please consider bringing a Jewish friend to one of these events – my prayer is that they experience what happened to me.
Inviting Your Jewish Friend to a Messianic Passover Seder
Allow me to give you a few ideas about how to invite a Jewish friend to a Chosen People Ministries “Messiah in the Passover” presentation or to a Messianic Seder.
I am often asked, “How do I decide which Jewish friend I should invite to a Passover Seder?” This is a difficult question with a very easy solution. The answer is to ask the Lord in prayer to direct you as to whom you should invite. Then ask Him to give you the courage, boldness and opportunity to invite your Jewish friend or relative.
You might also wonder whether or not your Jewish friends would even be interested in attending a Messianic Passover Seder. I find that many Jewish people are actually quite interested in going along with a Christian friend to a Passover Seder. It is a rare Jewish person who has never experienced the Seder, even if only in childhood—so you do not have to explain or “sell” the idea of going to a Seder.
One thing I might suggest is that you present this event as an “interfaith Seder;” these are, by the way, becoming quite popular. That way, your friend will understand that there will be a component of Christian teaching as part of the event, and he or she will not feel as though they are being “ambushed” or that you have brought them under false pretenses.
It is perfectly acceptable to tell your Jewish friend that you have discovered that Communion, or the Lord’s Supper, which is such an essential part of Christianity, has Jewish roots.
Your Jewish friend is probably wondering why you would ever want to celebrate a Jewish Passover Seder anyway! Their curiosity might drive them to attend. But the main reason why your Jewish friend would want to attend the Passover is because he or she is your friend. They want to understand you. They have seen that your faith is vital and dynamic—not simply part of your life, but the core of your life and being. By now, I am sure that this has both attracted your Jewish friend and made them curious. In other words, they might really want to see “what makes you tick” spiritually.
Expect Positive Responses
The one response that you fear the most will probably not happen. Your Jewish friend will probably not get angry and reject your invitation outright on religious or moral grounds. They might reject the invitation because of a scheduling conflict, but not because they are offended. This would rarely happen.
In fact, the most probable response is that your Jewish friend would tell you how thoughtful you were for inviting them and that they either can or cannot come based on their schedule. So you needn’t be overly concerned about the way your invitation will be received.
To avoid unnecessary Christian terminology, you may choose to use the word “Messiah” instead of the word “Christ.” You could say “Yeshua” rather than “Jesus.” You might even stress to your Jewish friend that there is more Jewishness to Christianity than most people ever suspect.
Preparing Yourself for the Messianic Seder
Finally, you can prepare yourself for attending a Messianic Passover Seder with your Jewish friend by learning more about Passover yourself. I know the chart in this newsletter will be very helpful to you.
Perhaps the best preparation for you would be to attend a Passover Seder at the home of your Jewish friend. If you are invited, jump at the chance! You will enjoy it and it will provide a point of comparison for the Messianic Passover Seder.
You might also read through the Passover account in the Book of Exodus and encourage your friend to do so as well. This will help prepare you for the evening. Anything you can do to include the Bible – especially the Old Testament – into the framework of your relationship with your Jewish friend will be helpful in the days ahead. Most of all, pray for the event and for your Jewish friend, as this could be an evening that will transform his or her life.
Have a blessed Passover and Easter. May the risen Lamb of God fill your home with His power and joy!