“Adonai said to Moshe, ‘Go to Pharaoh, for I have made him and his servants hardhearted, so that I can demonstrate these signs of mine among them.” - Exodus 10:1, CJB
Parashah 15 (BO or “go”) in Exodus 10:1-13:16 details for us the last three of the ten plagues which Adonai visited upon Egypt. Of them, a swarm of locusts destroys Egypt’s crops and then a think, palpable darkness enveloped the nation bring both terror and as a reminder of the spiritual darkness that was Egypt’s reality of a people apart from God’s grace and mercy. In conclusion, the final plaque occurred at the stroke of midnight on the 15th of Nisan, with the death of Egypt’s firstborn.
With the death of the firstborn, we find Pharaoh’s final resistance to the will of God being broken as he drove the children of Israel from his land. As a result, God’s people were forced to leave so quickly, that the dough of their bread had no time to rise, and on the first Pesach (as with today) they could ate only unleavened bread.
Within this Parashah, the first mitzvah given by God to the Children of Israel was to create a biblical calendar, based on Rosh Chodesh (the monthly rebirth of the moon, or “new moon”) and then instructs them to bring to Him a Passover (Pesach) offering consisting of a lamb or kid goat that would be slaughtered for their redemption before the Lord! From this sacrifice, the blood of the “lamb” was sprinkled on the doorposts of every Israelite home, so that when Adonai (pesach) passed over their homes their firstborn would be spared, while those who knew not Adonai and His commands suffered the greatest horror and judgement!
For us as a believer’s in Yeshua, Parashah Bo holds special significance when considering His sacrifice for us as the pure, spotless lamb. (1 Kefa/Peter 1:19) Such reminds of the love of God displayed in the Akedah, or “Binding of Isaac” (Genesis 22) wherein the rabbis offer a Midrash that the blood of the Passover lamb symbolized the sacrifice of Isaac, in making atonement for Israel. Continuing, our Sages note that Adonai remembered Isaac and when He saw the blood of the lamb from the thicket, and the merit of Isaac’s “self-sacrifice,” He decided to spare the blood marked homes from the wrath upon the first born. Although this is only a midrash intended to place our attention in a specified direction, it nevertheless points to the truths of the B’rit Chadashah by means of teshuat olamim (or, everlasting covenant where we read in Hebrews 9:12 we read of Yeshua that,
“he entered the Holiest Place once and for all [and] He entered not by means of the blood of goats and calves, but by means of his own blood, thus setting people free forever.”
From this passage, we see that the eternal sacrifice of Yeshua was fully prefigured both in Parashah Bo and in the Akedah in the Book of Genesis. Therefore, as we apply the blood of the lamb (as upon the door posts of Israelite homes) upon our hearts and lives, then we are delivered and made free in Messiah forever!
- Rabbi Mark Rantz
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