Yeshua and His disciples participated in a Seder on the eve of the Day of Preparation for Pesach which is Aviv or Nisan 14th (Luke 22:7-8; 23:54; John 13:1). This is what is known as Erev Pesach and the Fast of the Firstborn (Ta’anit Bechorim). Remember a biblical day starts with the Eve and then the Morning (Genesis 1:3-28).
Many times we are conditioned to think that a day is morning and evening and that midnight is the devils hour. Yet we see in Genesis Elohim first created the Eve or Night and called it good. Passover was to began at dusk the beginning of the new day following the setting sun just before it becomes dark.
This Pesach was a Training Seder to teach the disciples the Messianic fulfillment in Passover complete with multiple cups of wine (Luke 22:17, 20; 24:27,30-31,44-47), reclining at the table (Luke 22:14, 27, foot washing (John 13:4-17) and matza (Luke 22:7). Aviv/Nisan 14 is the night of Adonai‘s Pesach according to Numbers 28:16. That night Yeshua (Adonai’s Pesach) was betrayed. Yeshua was the inspected by the preist, crucified and killed that same day (Aviv/Nisan 14th-Erev Pesach) at about the same time the Passover lamb would have been killed between noon and three. From about the time Yeshua was hung on the Cross there was darkness from noon until three in the afternoon when He gave up His spirit and died (Luke 23:44-46).
It’s beautiful how HaShem of the Old Covenant was in fact dying on the tree as He gave up the Holy Spirit (the Paraklet) the Veil (Parokhet) was rent and even some Jews of the Sanhedrin believed upon Him (Luke 23:45-46, 50-51). He was declared dead after three on the 14th of Aviv/Nisan (Luke 22:7). The fifteenth day following the fourteenth is to be a Feast of Unleavened Bread, this Feast begins the Festival of Matzah which lasts for seven days (Numbers 28:17). The first two days of Pesach, Nisan 15 and 16th are what we know as Passover. When you add the Erev Pesach, The Feast of Pesach (on Nisan 15th and 16th, the first two days of Unleavened Bread) and the Festival of Unleavened Bread, this makes a total of eight days for what is now commonly called Passover. Many families eat their Pesach Feast on the Eve of Nisan 15th and many Congregations celebrate Pesach on Nisan 16th.
Yeshua had to be put in the grave before the Feast of Unleavened Bread begun at sundown. The disciples would have been able to meet with their families who were in Jerusalem and then eat the Passover lamb the eve of Aviv 15th as apart of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the first night of Pesach. A man from the Sanhedrin Yosef asked for Yeshua’s body to put Him in the tomb (Luke 23:50-54). Since Yosef became unclean by touching Yeshua’s corpse he would have had to wait to observe the festival in the Second month on the 14th day with Matzah and Maror as Moshe tells us in Numbers 9:10-13.
The Day of Preparation precede’s the 15th of Aviv the Shabbat of Passover (Luke 23:54). The Disciples families would have been in Jerusalem for the Festival of Unleavened Bread. Everyone would have been observing the Feast of Unleavened Bread hours after Yeshua’s death.
Yeshua later appeared to the Disciple after the Resurrection still during the Festival of Unleavened Bread blessed and broke the Matzah, they realized who He was and He disappeared before their eyes, (Luke 24:30-31). It is when He broke the Matza that their eye’s were opened. Immediately after Yeshua gave them the Great Commission and went to Heaven then the Disciples proceeded to the Outer Courts (also known as the Gentile Courts) praising Adonai especially because the Veil had just been rent (Luke 24:53, 44-53; 23:45).
There is confusion at times because of the use of the term Passover which means different things to different people. For example many “Christian’s” believe Passover is just a meal a glorified Communion or Eucharist with some food and a few cups of wine. To many Modern Jews Passover is the Festivals of Pesach and Unleavened Bread are what they refer to. For one its thought to be a meal to another its two festival that last a total of eight days. I hope to explain and clear the use’s and meanings of there here. Whereas the HaShem’s Meal is the Feast of Pesach and “Christianity” derives its Communal/Eucharist Tradition from this Passover also includes the Festival of Unleavened Bread and the Feast of First Fruits. Yeshua most likely ascended to heaven at the culmination of the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
With the statement from Yeshua “do this in remembrance of me” ringing in their ears the disciples would have been observing the Festival of Unleavened hours after His death. That is amazing and had to be life changing. They would have been doing it in remembrance of what he had just done hours before. They had to be there observing Passover and remembering what Yeshua said. In the Epistles show us that when they pieced it together it was a powerful revelation to them. It was a life changing transformation when they felt the burning in their bosom as they walked along the Emmaus road and connected. When they connected Yeshua’s statements that He “must die,” that they had to “eat His flesh” and “drink His blood” with “do this in remembrance of Me” it had to be transformative.
Yeshua had a training Seder on the Eve Pesach on Nisan 14th (the Preparation Day/Fast of the Firstborn) (Wednesday Evening) then He was betrayed, and was crucified around noon of the same day of Nisan 14th (Thursday afternoon). He died just after three and had to be in the tomb by sunset. Yosef and anyone who helped bury Yeshua we’re unclean until evening and most likely washed their clothes. They would have to observe Pesach on the 14th day of the second month. Then that evening (the Eve of Nisan 15th (Thursday Evening, The Feast of Unleavened Bread/Passover Meal) when Passover mealis observed) the apostles would have been with their families who were in Jerusalem for Passover eating unleavened bread and drinking the cups of Pesach. Yeshua was in the tomb Nisan 15 (Friday, the first Day of The Festival of Unleavened Bread, or the first Shabbat of Matzah) and 16th (Saturday, the Shabbat, first day of the Omer Count). Then between the eve and morning of Nisan 17th (Sunday) on Firstfruits Yeshua rose from the dead between the Eve and morning. By the time morning rolled around the tomb was empty, the stone was rolled away, Yeshua had Risen and was alive on His way to show Himself to the father. Having taken the Azazel (the scapegoat or goat-headed demon) outside the city, went into Hades to retrieve the keys to death hell and the grave and went through the ritual of purification. When Yeshua saw Mary He would have been on His way to see the Father to show that He was clean. Yeshua was seen by His disciples throughout of the Feast of Unleavened Bread at the culmination of the Feast Yeshua returned to Heaven.
The Fast of the Firstborn is always observed on the Eve Pesach which falls on Nisan 14th the Day of Preparation for the Festival of Unleavened Bread. This one day fast is done by the firstborn to commemorate the miracle of Pesach where the Firstborn males were passed over if the blood was applied to the doorpost. Before the firstborn son’s Bar Mitzvah the father may fast in his place. Yeshua is the Firstborn to Mary, the Firstborn of “many Brethren,” and the Firstborn or Preeminent Son of His Father HaShem. This always falls on Erev Pesach. Yeshua would have been fasting once they completed the “training” Seder until right before His death when the soldier tried to force Him to drink gull.
According to tradition Passover is held on Nisan 15th. Some do a family Seder on Nisan 15th and then a congregational one on Nisan 16th (which is the first night of the Count of Omer). In the Apostolic Constitutions it was required that they observe Passover on Nisan 14th “with the Jews” as the text reads. There is some debate over whether it should be the 14th of 15th.
The double Shabbat after Yeshua’s death was the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread (which is “a” Shabbat not “the” Shabbat). This Shabbat fell on Friday that year making it a double Sabbath. This means there could not have been a “good Fridaym” He died on Thursday before the Eve of The Feast of Unleavened Bread, the First night of Pesach. The first day and the last day of Sukkot and Passover are also Holy Day Shabbat’s (rest days) in addition to the weekly Shabbat. This is how there we’re two Shabbat’s when Yeshua died. It was the morning of Firstfruits (Nisan 17th) when Mary saw Yeshua risen from the dead for the first time.
Many point that Yeshua was crucified and put in the tomb at the same time that the Passover lamb was killed, in order to point to the disciples doing Pesach on the 15th following their “Training Seder” on the 14th. Other point to the Quartodeciman’s who observed on Nisan 14 and the Apostolic Constitutions which also point to Nisan 14th. Was the Apostolic Constitution refering to the Quartodecimans or Nazerene’s as “the Jews?” I am not sure.
Yeshua did however do his “Training” Seder on Nisan 14th the day of the Fast of the Firstborn. And was laid in the tomb that day before the observation of Passover on Nisan 15th. Whether you choose to do it the night before as Yeshua trained His disciples or on the Eve of Passover after He was laid in the tomb is neither here nor there. If you do either in remembrance of Yeshua I believe your doing what He said “Do this in remembrance of me” as he intended.
If you do it the night before as He did with His disciples or the night of in my opinion both are right to do. As in Jewish Tradition some do two, if you want to do two then your good in my opinion. Personally I prefer to do two one on the Eve of Pesach and the Feast of Unleavened Bead depending on when we can participate in a congregational or group Seder. I like to consider what the disciples would have been considering on the night of Nisan 15th as well as Nisan 14th. Yeshua had just died for their sins. If you choose to do it the night He did His “Training” Seder before going to become our Paschal lamb or the night of the Feast of Matza you are good in my eye’s.
Anything less than either one of the seder’s is to miss the mark completely. Date and calendar’s change, seeking to do things right should remain.
In HaShem‘s love.
- Weekly Torah Portion: Pesach (Passover) Week 1 (paradoxparables.justparadox.com)