CHRIST OUR PASSOVER
By Nana Yaw Aidoo
In 1 Corinthians 5:7, the apostle Paul wrote: “For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us.” What can we learn from this great text?
The Passover as most Bible students well know is an Old Testament reality, a feast that has its basis in that series of events we read about in the book of Exodus. Due to the Pharaoh’s hard heartedness, God decided on the killing of the first-born children of all Egyptians as a means to get the king to let His people go. At a specific point in time the Lord would make an appearance in Egypt with the express purpose of killing the first-born Egyptian sons (Exo. 12:12). The reality is that every single first-born son on Egyptian soil, be it Hebrew or Egyptian, was on death row at that specific point in time. It was “all the firstborn in the land of Egypt” that God was going to smite.
However, God gave a condition to the Hebrews. In order that He not end up killing them in addition to the Egyptians, they had to kill a lamb, smear the blood on their lintels and on their doorposts and stay indoors till morning (Exo. 12:22). That way, the blood would serve as some form of a lens through which God would view those indoors (Exo. 12:13). In a sense the blood covered those behind the blood-marked doors. Those behind the blood-marked doors would thus be freed from death not because they were sinless or worthy but because of the blood. It so happened that on the day the Lord made His appearance not a single person died who was behind a door marked with blood (Exo. 12:27).
In like manner, Jesus Christ was born to die not for dying sake but to free men from death, which is the penalty of sin. Just like the first-born sons in the land of Egypt all men today are on death row because all men have sinned (Rom. 3:23; 6:23). And just as those in the days of old were freed from death because they were covered with the blood of the lamb, those who today would actually be freed from death would have to be covered with the blood of Christ.
Christ is our Passover because that event as we read about in the Old Testament was a type or a shadowy reality of the real substance, Jesus Christ. Just as God looked at the blood of the lamb and freed from death those behind the blood marked lintels or those covered by the blood, so today God looks at the blood of Christ and frees from death those who are covered by the blood of Christ. In this dispensation of time, there is no spiritual amnesty except in and through Jesus Christ (Eph. 1:3). By Him, and through Him and in Him only is there freedom from the condemnation of death.
How then are men covered by the blood of Christ? The Hebrews were covered by the blood of the lamb when they obeyed God’s word to paint their lintels and doorposts with the blood of the lamb. In like manner, today, we are covered by the blood of Christ when we obey God’s word to be baptized for the remission of our sins. The risen and victorious Christ declared: “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned” (Mark 16:16).
What is the link between baptism and the blood of Christ? The link is that baptism is that act, which brings us into contact with the blood of Christ. Paul wrote:
Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life (Rom. 6:3-4).
Since Jesus Christ shed His blood in His death, and since when we are baptized, we are baptized into His death, then we are baptized into that realm or place where Christ shed His blood thereby coming into contact with the blood.
Christ died for the sins of all men and thus all men have the opportunity to be washed in His blood (Tit. 2:11). However, be mindful of the fact that the letter to the Corinthians was written to those who were already in Christ (1 Cor. 1:2). Hence, in a very real sense, Jesus Christ is the Passover lamb of only those who have obeyed His requirement to be baptized for the remission of sins (Heb. 5:8-9).
Have you been baptized for the remission of your sins? If yes, then Christ is your Passover. If no, then why not (Acts 22:16)?