Parashat Bo: Remembering Our Salvation
by Muriel Stern
The previous seven plagues had brought disaster to Egypt. But Pharaoh, with his hardened heart, was still not willing to let the Israelites go. So the Lord sent locusts, who devoured everything and left Egypt completely ruined. And like after the hail, Pharaoh repented and admitted that he had sinned. He agreed to let the Israelites go. Moses prayed and a strong west wind caught up the locusts and carried them into the sea.
Pharaoh’s heart was hardened again and the Lord covered the land of Egypt in total darkness for three days. The Pharaoh tried to bargain with Moses. The men, women and children could go, but all flocks and herds must stay behind.The Pharaoh was furious when Moses did not agree.
And finally it had been enough, one more plague and Pharaoh will let the people go.
The Lord gave very detailed instructions to Moses and Aaron. On the tenth day of the month every household was to select a lamb; one year old, without defects, either sheep or goat. If one lamb was too much for the family for one meal they should share with their neighbors. They were to care for the lamb until the fourteenth day of the month. On that day they were to slaughter the lambs. The blood of the lamb was to be put on the sides and the top of the door frames of the house where the meal would be served. The whole lamb, with all its parts was to be roasted over fire and eaten with bitter herbs and unleavened bread. The meal was to be eaten in haste, with everyone dressed in their travel clothing. Any leftovers were to be burned.
The Israelites did as Moses instructed and celebrated the first Passover. And as was foretold, when the Lord struck down all the firstborn in Egypt He passed over the houses that had the blood of the lamb on the doorposts.
It was still night when Moses and Aaron were summoned to Pharaoh. His hardened heart was broken after the death of his firstborn son. He was ready to let the Israelites go. The Egyptians too, urged the people to leave. And so the Israelites finally left Egypt. They had been in Egypt for 430 years and had grown into a large nation of six hundred thousand men, not including women and children.
The word throughout this portion is; remember. The Lord gave specific instructions to the Israelites for that night in Egypt. But He also told them to have a similar meal every year to remember. Unleavened bread is to be eaten for a whole week, every year, to remember. Every first born needs to be redeemed, to remember.
Many years later when Yeshua is having an early Passover meal with his disciples, He too urges them to remember.
“And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.” – Luke 22:19
Lambs were about to be slaughtered for the meal in which we remember how God had delivered the people from Egypt. The blood of the lambs on the doorpost had saved the firstborns of the Israelites. Yeshua was about to be slaughtered, just like the lambs. His body broken just like the bread He broke. His blood was going to bring salvation to the world.
God had given instructions to the Israelites right before He was going to save them. Yeshua did the same, He was about to do something miraculous. And He told us to remember.
About Muriel Stern
Muriel Stern has a lifelong love affair with words, specifically with the Word. It is her hope that with her writing she does honor to the Author and inspires others to fall head over heels for the Creator as well. Muriel & her husband Daniel reside in the City of the Great King. Their four children love books as much as their parents.