Zvi Mar/Apr 2002
On March 28 our holiday of Passover, or Pesach in Hebrew, will begin. It is a holiday that celebrates our redemption from slavery in Egypt. But more important, Pesach teaches of our redemption from sin through our Savior, Yeshua Hamashiach.
Here in Israel, however, most people do not think of Yeshua. They think only of matzoh. For seven days, observant Jewish people do not eat anything with leaven, or yeast, but only matzoh, or unleavened bread.
It is written in the Bible, “Christ, our passover, is sacrificed for us” (1 Cor. 5:7). Our great and final sacrifice for sin was Jesus Christ, not matzoh. But I cannot go to people here and speak freely of Christ and the New Testament. They do not even allow themselves to speak the name Jesus. They will say only “this man.” Yet even among thorns, you can find a flower. So we never give up. And we can see many such flowers blossoming here, as long as we are patient.
So I continue to visit the synagogues. I was in a synagogue recently; and as soon as I began to speak to people about Isaiah 53 (which many call “the forbidden chapter”), people started shouting and yelling at me, “You are from those
I told them, “It is not my fault I believe in Him. I believe because it is written in the Bible. I worship the Lord according to the Bible, not according to traditions and superstitions. Is such a thing forbidden?”
They looked at me suspiciously, then said, “But it is not written here about this man.”
But thou, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel, whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting (5:2).
“About whom is this written?” I asked. “And Isaiah 7:14, which says one will come who is born of a virgin. About whom is that written? And Zechariah 12:10, which says, ‘they shall look upon me whom they have pierced.’ On whom will they look? Whom have they pierced?”
The rabbis and their pupils all listened carefully. The rabbis themselves were so quiet that I looked into their faces, waiting for them to react and suddenly come against me. And their pupils also were silent, waiting for the rabbis to speak.
Instead of becoming angry, one of the men asked, “How did you find all this out?”
“I have believed what is written here in the Bible,” I replied. “I never go to commentaries and many books, as you do. I read only the Bible. Because of your commentaries, you have lost your way. As we say, you cannot make ten cups of tea with one small teabag. The teabag eventually loses its taste and color. So it is with you. You have lost the right direction. And now you need to take the map, which is the Bible, and find your way.
“It will be a lamp to your feet and a light to your path. Here, take this book,” I said, giving them my Bible. “It was written by the Holy Spirit of God. In here you will find yourselves.”
I was so sure they would cast me away. But instead we spoke as friends for several hours. The Lord has opened a door for them to see the truth. Perhaps someday they will become “flowers” among the thorns; and they, too, will understand that “Christ, our passover, is sacrificed for us.”