From Slavery to Freedom

By Rabbi Ari Waldman
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Posted in Jewish HolidaysPesach, on March 26, 2017

“I have surely seen the affliction of My people who are in Egypt, and have heard their cry because of their slave masters, for I know their pains. So I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians…” Exodus 3:7, TLV

Are you under the bondage of slavery? ADONAI has made the way!

Jacob and his sons fled from a great famine to the land of Egypt. They settled in Egypt under the protection of Joseph, Pharaoh’s second-in-command. Eventually, a new Pharaoh came to power who did not remember Joseph. This Pharaoh enslaved the Hebrews.

ADONAI enlisted Moses as His representative in order to deliver the people of Israel from the yoke of Egyptian slavery. Moses petitioned Pharaoh, “Let My people go,” to offer sacrifices in the wilderness to ADONAI. Pharaoh refused. Therefore, ADONAI performed ten miracles/plagues in an attempt to persuade Pharaoh to let His people go. The plagues concluded with the death of every firstborn.

ADONAI instructed Moses and the people to slaughter a lamb without blemish at twilight in order to spread the blood on the doorposts and on the cross beams (Exodus 12). The blood on the doors would be a sign to G-d, causing Him to pass over their houses so that they would escape the judgment of death. This perfect lamb was the sacrifice that stayed ADONAI’s hand of judgment from coming against anyone who placed his or her faith in the promise of ADONAI. God instructed the people to consume all of the roasted lamb and to leave none until morning. If a lamb was too big for one family, they were to invite their neighbors to partake.

ADONAI instructed His people Israel to celebrate this day as an annual and eternal ordinance (Exodus 13:14). This is generally done in the Jewish community by having a Passover seder (an ordered service), which consists of retelling the story of Israel’s deliverance while eating a meal together. The lamb was to be eaten with bitter herbs and matzah (unleavened bread). During a seder, these elements would be present to recall the time of slavery in Egypt and the subsequent deliverance of ADONAI.

Yeshua can be seen throughout the Passover story. He is the Lamb that was pierced for our transgressions (Isaiah 53) and when His blood is applied to our hearts it will be a sign that we have been purchased for redemption. The penalty of our sins is death, but judgment shall pass over us and ADONAI will lead us out of bondage to sin into a freedom where we can wholeheartedly worship and serve Him.

The format of the seder has remained relatively constant over time. During each Passover, we tell the story to our children of how we were delivered out of slavery in Egypt. This corporate solidarity makes the miracle real in our own lives.

At a Passover seder a few years ago, we participated in a new addition to the seder. An additional cup of wine to celebrate the State of Israel witnessed to the great works and miracles of ADONAI in our own generation. The birth of the modern State of Israel opened a heavenly door of return to the Land of our forefathers – the Land that G-d promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and their descendants forever.

ADONAI has provided Yeshua the Lamb for our own deliverance from the bondage of slavery to sin. He has released us into a world to share this Good News with everyone, Jew and Gentile (Romans 1:16). We have not been delivered out of slavery and into freedom to simply enjoy our freedom. We have been delivered with the purpose of worshiping and serving ADONAI as in the times of the Exodus. The people were to go into the wilderness and worship/serve ADONAI. Since we have been delivered from bondage and sin, let’s leave our slavery and go serve ADONAI by making Him known throughout the entire world.

Rabbi Ari Waldman, Baruch Hashem Messianic Synagogue

Ari Waldman is the Senior Rabbi at Baruch HaShem Messianic Synagogue and also serves on the MJBI Board of Directors. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in aeronautical science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and a master’s degree in Messianic Jewish Studies from The King’s University. Ari is married to Brittany and has two beautiful daughters. (

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