God Passed Over

passover11It is safe to say that before every major event written in scripture, there is a genealogy. For example, before creation “In the beginning God…” (Genesis 1:1); Genesis 5 is the genealogy of man and chapter 6 is the beginning of the flood; chapter 10 is another genealogy and chapter 11 is the tower of Babel, to name a few; Exodus 1:1-8 is a short genealogy of Israel and chapter 2 is the birth of Moses. On and on it goes. Even in Matthew and Luke we have genealogies listed before the birth of Christ.

There appear to be many seminal events in scripture and almost as many pre-incarnate events. From time to time we even read of events that seem to indicate what we call today, genocide or a type of genocide. For example again in Exodus 1, there is a pretty clear indication that the Israelite males were being systematically purged from the Egyptian landscape. The intentional killing of the first born males as a form of population control by the Egyptians was beyond evil and demonstrated the reach and extent of power that Pharaoh’s held. They really were seen as living gods. In the midst of such a hopeless situation, Moses was born and he was a first born son. God saw fit to preserve his life and make him a messianic figure for the suffering Israelites.

I mentioned seminal events in the first paragraph, a number of those involved Moses. However, one in particular brings together and culminates with both the genealogy, preservation of God’s people, and systematic destruction of the false gods of Egypt. In so doing, God demonstrates who He is and how far He will go to preserve that which leads to the coming of Christ. Where does this happen in scripture? In chapters 11-13 of Exodus. In chapter 11, the announcement is made of the death of the first born Egyptian males, the tenth and final plague. Prior to this plague, God released other plagues upon Egypt that demonstrated the weakness and ineffectiveness of the false gods they worshiped. God was showing Egypt that He alone is God! In chapter 12, Passover is instituted by the Israelite families by the marking of their door frames with the blood of lambs. They were marked on the right, on the left and above the entry way with using a hyssop branch dipped in the blood. After this, the families ate roasted lamb with bitter herbs and unleavened bread for a late dinner leaving none for later.

sedarListed above were some of the instructions God gave Moses to tell the children of Israel to pre-memorialize what would happen next. In Exodus 12:29-30, God passed over Egypt and those who did not have the lambs blood on the outer regions of their door experienced the death of their first born sons of all ages.

The provision of the lamb and the lamb’s blood is consistently seen as a pre-incarnate event marking the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross for our sins. It would have been one thing if God did NOT provide a way for the Israelite genealogy to survive and He continued to wipe out the first born in the land of Egypt to include the Israelites. However, He did provide a way and in doing so highlighted events that would occur well into the future.

The preservation of the people who would ultimately and intricately be involved in bringing about God’s will on earth is undeniable in scripture. Today we have reaped the benefits of the original Passover and together we are an example of God’s preservation at work. Population control is not in God’s blue print but the preservation of people who are willing to follow God most certainly is.

This year Passover will be celebrated from Friday April 3rd to Saturday April 11th. As you and those in your genealogy participate in church services, chapel and even synagogue remember that God is the God of preservation. Learn how to share the salvation and preservation of Jesus (the lamb) with those you love and to do so with humility. Let God sort out who does and does not have the blood of the lamb on their door frames. You and I simply have the responsibility to share with others why we celebrate Passover and the meaning of God’s salvation and preservation. In doing so, you may become a major event for someone else’s genealogy.

Mijikai Mason
Disclaimer: The thoughts and views published on the Veterans to Christ blog are those of Mijikai Mason and in no way are meant to represent the United States Army or the Armed Forces.

Bio: Mijikai Mason is an Ordained Southern Baptist minister and Chaplain in the United States Army. He has been in the Army for 26 years both as an enlisted Soldier and now as an Officer. He has been stationed at various bases in the United States and in United States Army Garrison Schweinfurt, Germany. He holds an undergraduate degree in Religion from the University of Mobile, a Master of Divinity degree from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary in Theology and Evangelism and a Master of Arts degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Webster University. Chaplain (MAJ) Mijikai Mason was selected by the Army in 2013, to become a Family Life Chaplain and began his service in this field starting 15 May 2015. He is the Deputy ESC Chaplain and Family Life Chaplain for the 593 Expeditionary Support Command at Joint Base Lewis McCord. He has deployed four times: Desert Storm (1991), Iraq twice (2005-2006; 2007-2008), and Afghanistan (2012-2013). He has a total of 42 months deployed in combat and logistics operations. Mijikai and his wife, Ashley, have been married for 17 years this May and live near Joint Base Lewis McChord, Washington with their four daughters.