This night is to be observed

Some Proposed Routes of the Exodus


Tonight after sunset is the 15th of Nisan. While certain Jews will celebrate the Passover tonight, Passover was actually last night (see Passover on the 14th or 15th?). Tonight, however, is a biblical celebration and it does resemble the Jewish celebration in that the emphasis is on a meal and the departure from Egypt (representing the sinning world for Christians).

Anyway, notice what the Bible calls tonight’s celebration:

42 It is a night to be much observed unto the LORD for bringing them out from the land of Egypt: this is that night of the LORD to be observed of all the children of Israel in their generations (Exodus 12:42, KJV).

And it is a time to reflect on Christ’s Passover sacrifice and that Christians are to come out of the world and not be part of it. Here is some of what Jesus taught about that:

19 If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you (John 15:19, NKJV).

Exodus chapter 12 contains the account of the first Passover. It begins with God instructing Moses and Aaron about what they were to teach the people and what was going to happen. This instruction included the taking out of a lamb on the tenth day of this first month, called Abib, and saving it up until the 14th day when it was to be killed at twilight — the beginning of the 14th.

Here are some of the biblical instructions about the Passover:

Pick out and take lambs for yourselves according to your families, and kill the Passover lamb. And you shall take a bunch of hyssop, dip it in the blood that is in the basin and strike the lintel and the two doorposts with the blood that is in the basin. And none of you shall go out of the door of his house until morning. (Exodus 12:21-22)

The expression “til morning” comes from Hebrew word meaning “the breaking through of daylight,” “coming of daylight,” or the “coming of sunrise.”

So, Israelites did not go out of their homes until after dawn. What happened that night?

And it came to pass at midnight that the LORD struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of livestock. So Pharaoh rose in the night, he, all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was not a house where there was not one dead. Then he called for Moses and Aaron by night, and said, “Rise and go out from among my people, both you and the children of Israel. And go, serve the LORD as you have said. Also take your flocks and your herds, as you have said, and be gone; and bless me also.” And the Egyptians urged the people, that they might send them out of the land in haste. For they said, “We shall all be dead.”(Exodus 12:29-33)

Notice that Moses and Aaron did NOT go out during the night – that is an incorrect assumption (see Exodus 10:28-29) that many various ones have:

Then Pharaoh said to him, “Get away from Me! Take heed to yourself and see my face no more! For in the day you see my face you shall die!” And Moses said, “You have spoken well. I will never see your face again.” (Exodus 10:28-29)

After the death of the firstborn, Israelites had a number of tasks to complete before leaving Egypt. They were to stay inside their houses until morning, the breaking of daylight, burn the remains of the lambs that had not been eaten, go to the villages and cities where the Egyptians lived and ask them to give them silver, gold, and clothing, gather and load up whatever possessions they were to carry and with their herds and flocks travel on foot, for some as much as twenty miles, to Rameses where their organized journey out of Egypt was to begin. Notice:

And the people took their dough before it was leavened, their kneadingtroughs being bound up in their clothes upon their shoulders. And the children of Israel did according to the word of Moses and they borrowed of the Egyptians jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment: And the LORD gave the people favour in the sight of the Egyptians, so that they lent unto them such things as they required. And they spoiled the Egyptians. And the children of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, about six hundred thousand on foot that were men, beside children. And a mixed multitude went up also with them; and flocks, and herds, even very much cattle. And they baked unleavened cakes of the dough which they brought forth out of Egypt, for it was not leavened; because they were thrust out of Egypt, and could not tarry, neither had they prepared for themselves any victual. (Exodus 12:34-39 –King James Version)

The Night to be Much Observed

Then they left.

Exodus 13:18 tells us, “the children of Israel went up in orderly ranks out of the land of Egypt.”

It’s remarkable that they were able to do accomplish this all by the night after the Passover. Now notice:

Now the sojourn of the children of Israel who lived in Egypt was four hundred and thirty years. And it came to pass at the end of the four hundred and thirty years — on that very same day — it came to pass that all the armies of the LORD went out from the land of Egypt. It is a night of solemn observance to the LORD for bringing them out of the land of Egypt. This is that night of the LORD, a solemn observance for all the children of Israel throughout their generations.(Exodus 12:40-42)

Notice how to differentiate Passover night from Night to be Much Observed by looking at the date each was supposed to fall on (14th or 15th):

On the fourteenth day of the first month at twilight is the LORD’s Passover. And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the Feast of Unleavened Bread to the LORD: seven days you must eat unleavened bread. (Leviticus 23:5-6)

These are the journeys of the children of Israel, who went out of the land of Egypt by their armies under the hand of Moses and Aaron. Now Moses wrote down the starting points of their journeys at the command of the LORD. And these are their journeys according to their starting points: They departed from Rameses in the first month, on the fifteenth day of the first month; on the day after the Passover the children of Israel went out with boldness in the sight of all the Egyptians. For the Egyptians were burying all their firstborn, whom the LORD had killed among them. Also on their gods the LORD had executed judgments. (Numbers 33:1-4)

Passover teaches us our need for the sacrificial Lamb, Jesus Christ, but this is only the beginning of God’s plan of salvation.

The Night to Be Observed reminds us that we have our part in our ultimate salvation. We must repent of sin and walk out of spiritual Egypt. This night pictures the beginning of that journey. We learn from this Feast that we cannot stay in Egypt. We are not to be part of this present evil world. Even as God separated His people from Egypt, we must be separated from modern day Egypt with all of its lures and attractions. Just as ancient Israel had to put forth effort to get out of bondage, so we too must put forth effort to remove ourselves from the bondage of this world.

The Night to Be Observed begins at sunset on March 25th, 2013.  Here is a link to a YouTube video titled The Night to Be Observed.

The next morning continues the official first day of unleavened bread, and is observed by faithful Christians as it has been for centuries (Should Christians Keep the Days of Unleavened Bread?).

Some items of related interest may include:

The Night to Be Observed What is the night to be much observed? When is it? Why do Jews keep Passover twice and emphasize the wrong date? Here is a link to a YouTube video titled The Night to Be Observed.
Should Christians Keep the Days of Unleavened Bread? Do they have any use or meaning now? What is leaven? This article supplies some biblical answers.
Christians and the Days of Unleavened Bread What does the Bible teach about the Days of Unleavened Bread?  Did the apostles such as John, Paul, and Philip keep it?  What is leaven?  Does history show that true Christians kept the Days of Unleavened Bread?  Who condemned these days?  Should you live like the Pharisees that relied more on tradition or the teachings of the Bible?  This YouTube was intended to be viewed on the first day of unleavened bread.
Keeping Passover and the Days of Unleavened Bread How should Christians keep Passover, especially if they are by themselves. Why does the Church of God not require lambs for Passover? How does one keep the Days of Unleavened Bread?
What Happened in the Crucifixion Week? How long are three days and three nights? Was Palm Sunday on a Saturday? Did Jesus die on “Good Friday”? Was the resurrection on Sunday? Do you really know? Who determined the date of Easter?
Did Early Christians Celebrate Easter? If not, when did this happen? What do scholars and the Bible reveal?
Michael’s Feasts and Fasts Quiz 15 questions, amusing wrong answer screens.
Living as a Christian: How and Why? In what ways do Christians live differently than others. What about praying, fasting, tithing, holy days, and the world? There is also a YouTube video related to that also called: Living as a Christian: How and Why?

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