Colin Nevin: Jesus instructed followers to remember Him at Passover

Letter to the editor
Letter to the editor

The recent discussions concerning the moveable date of Easter and the differences between the Eastern and Western churches on how two separate dates are currently observed surely could be solved by observing it on the date that it actually happened ie. in the Hebrew or Biblical calendar that Jesus would have used and which the Jews still use today.

Yeshua (Jesus) was crucified at Passover which falls this year on 22nd April and is the date upon which He instructed His followers to remember Him and His atoning or sacrificial death which completely matched the symbolism of the story of the Passover lamb and the shed blood on the doorposts of the Israelites’ homes which brought redemption or salvation from death.

In a like manner Yeshua provided salvation by becoming that sacrificial lamb and atoning for the sins of the people on the cross. So why do we celebrate ‘Easter’ which is named after a pagan deity?

The Passover of the LORD was an ‘appointed time’ that God set in place for His Son to suffer and die, and to remember that on that date is obeying Yeshua’s command.

The resurrection was a great miracle, but it was Yeshua’s atoning death that brought salvation, not the resurrection, and it was His death that we were asked to remember, not the resurrection, or to make a ‘holy day’ for the resurrection on a day named after sun-worship ie. ‘Sun’-day.

I think one day could be used by all people, both Eastern and Western Christians and also the Jews themselves - the date of Passover, rather than the man-made ‘Easter.’ Passover can fall on any day of the week so it doesn’t need to be held to a particular day, which ‘Easter’ tries to do by being tied to a ‘Sun’-day.

The Passover was a rest day or ‘Sabbath’ so people think it was a Saturday, but annual Sabbaths can fall on any day, and the Bible does not use the word ‘Friday,’ so the terming of ‘Good Friday’ is based on conjecture and a misunderstanding of the Jewish calendar and feasts, which is why Yeshua’s description of His ‘three days and three nights’ i.e. 72 hours in the grave do not add up to the 36 hours from Friday afternoon to before dawn on Sunday morning.

Yeshua was already risen when the women appeared at the tomb so to match his being taken down from the cross late afternoon before the onset of Passover, count back from the same time late on the Saturday Sabbath (before dawn on Sunday) and you will arrive at Wednesday for the Lord’s crucifixion.

It doesn’t match church tradition, but it does match the Gospel account and Yeshua’s own words.

Colin Nevin, Chef, Hilton Tel-Aviv, Israel 1991-2002