JN Darby on the Passover – The Original Passover –  God’s Commandments

Pharaoh’s heart was hardened.  So at last God executes His judgment, taking the firstborn as representatives of all the people. We have thus two parts in the deliverance of the people; in one,

1.     God appears as Judge

2.     God manifests Himself as Deliverer, satisfied through the redeeming blood.

The Passover by Subject – The Original Passover –  God’s Commandments

The Passover is the first in our series of JND on Selected Subjects

Notes from Darby’s Writings


Despite the plagues, Pharaoh’s heart was hardened.  So at last God executes His judgment, taking the firstborn as representatives of all the people. We have thus two parts in the deliverance of the people; in one,

1.     God appears as Judge

2.     God manifests Himself as Deliverer, satisfied through the redeeming blood.

God says, ‘When I see the blood, I will pass over’ (v. 13).  It is not said, ‘When you see it’, but ‘When I see it”.  The soul of an awakened person rests, not on its own righteousness, or even his value of the blood, but on God’s valuation it.  Peace is founded on God’s valuation.  Our faith is in that.

JND Synopsis – Exodus 12


There is further a difference between the passover and the great day of atonement. Here the blood met the eye of God passing through the land in judgment. On the great day of atonement it purified His habitation from our defilements, and, we can say, opened up the way to God’s throne and presence; gave us boldness to enter into the holiest by a new and living way. In the passover was added, as it had the character of first deliverance and forgiveness, the bitter herbs of judgment of sin in ourselves, and feeding on the slain Lamb, with loins girded and shoes on our feet, to leave the place of sin and judgment from which as the consequence of sin we had been fully sheltered. JND Synopsis – Exodus 13


We can take the sabbath, the Passover, and the feast of unleavened bread as making a whole. Of the two latter, the unleavened bread was the feast, properly speaking; the Passover was the sacrifice on which the feast was grounded. As the apostle says, ‘Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us: therefore let us keep the feast, not with leaven,’ (1 Cor 5:7).  What was indeed necessary for the sabbath, for the rest of God, was the sacrifice of Christ, and purity; and though all these feasts lead on to the rest of God, yet these two, the Passover and unleavened bread, are the basis of all, and of the rest itself for us. Christ’s sacrifice and the absence of all principle of sin, form the basis of the part we have in the rest of God. God is glorified in respect of sin; sin is put away for us, out of His sight, and out of our hearts. The perfect absence of leaven marked Christ’s path and nature down here, and is accomplished in us, so far as we realise Christ as our life, and recognise ourselves, though the flesh be still in us, as dead and risen with Him. To be without leaven was the perfection of the Person of Christ living upon earth, and becomes in principle of the walk upon earth of him who is partaker of His life. JND Synopsis Leviticus 23
The Passover recalled deliverance, deliverance from bondage in Egypt  – for us this means  deliverance from sin and Satan.  It was eaten with unleavened bread, the bread of affliction.  That would signify repentance – ‘truth in the inward parts’ (Psalm 51:6).  They were happy, having escaped bondage, through the power of God alone.  They would have had the sense that it was a deliverance from the evil under which they had been, by their own fault and to their own ruin.  If unrepentant (leaven in the house) the soul was cut off.

God gathered the people around His dwelling-place, and linked them with His name and with Himself.  They worshipped Jehovah

JND Synopsis Deuteronomy 16
The Passover relates to Christ’s dying for us.  In the Passover there was one simple truth, God was passing through as a judge, and passed over. JND Collected Writings Volume 33 (Miscellaneous 2) p404  Note on the Application of the Types of the Red Sea and Jordan


The character of the Passover sacrifice — for it is called ze-vakh (sacrifice) — is pretty plain. There was nothing burnt to the Lord; the holy character of the lamb was preserved by anything remaining over to be burnt, no bone to be broken, nor any part carried out of the house; but there was no sweet savour to the Lord, it had not that character of sacrifice — no altar or place of approach, neither hik-riv (brought near) nor hik-tir (burnt in sweet savour). It was not in character nor effect, coming to God; it was keeping God, as a righteous Judge, out, so that they escaped.

— 8, 10. The fact that the Passover was to be eaten at night, and nothing left till the morning or burned seems think, to show that it was entirely apart from the whole course and scene in which nature and sense are conversant.  It was an abstract matter between God and the soul, in the full undistracted claim and holiness of the divine nature.  It had nothing to do with their miserable circumstances.  It looked forward to where sin and the holy judgment of God met, when all was darkness for three hours with Christ on the cross.   Then all was to be burnt — there was no mixing it with any thing common; Israel was sanctified by it, like the priests, so that they ate it, but it could not be mixed with other food.

Notes & Comments vol. 1 p 210



Feasts of the Lord, mo-ed (a set time), feast of unleavened bread, Khag (a holy feast).

Note the Sabbath, Passover and unleavened bread were not dependent on their coming into the land.

The Passover is the basis of all, founded on which we have the feast of unleavened bread, the general result also in the sinless character of our association with God.  verse 4, therefore begins afresh as the grand basis of all, unleavened bread being connected with it. The rest are special and actual dealings of God, and states and terms of relationship with Him; hence verse 9 starts with a new “the Lord spake”, and that begins the ways of the Lord in the resurrection of Christ, first fruits from the dead presented to Him. Sabbath — Passover — and Unleaven are the general great truth of our being assembled to God, verses 1 – 8.


Notes & Comments vol. 2 p 62
Jehovah says, “I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast, and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am Jehovah. And the blood shall be unto you for a token upon the houses where ye are; and when I see the blood I will pass over you; and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt” (Exodus 12:12,-13). This was not the deliverance of Israel, like the passage of the Red Sea, but it was the ground of it; and of the two, the Passover was really the more solemn morally, though the Red Sea displayed God’s saving power more gloriously on behalf of His people and against their foes. But on the paschal night it was a question how God could pass over the guilty, even if His people; and the blood of the lamb sprinkled on Israel’s doorposts declared that God, though expressly judging, could not touch those screened thereby His truth and justice were stayed and satisfied before that blood. The destroyer was kept from entering.Not an Israelite perished within the blood-sprinkled lintels. It was a question of arresting God’s judgment here, of destroying Satan’s power in the type of the Red Sea; but the blood of Christ laid the foundation for the victory displayed in His resurrection.



JND Collected Writings Volume 21 (Evangelical 2) p9


Author: Sosthenes

Once the ruler of the synagogue at Corinth Then a co-writer of a letter by Paul - just a brother - no longer an official Now a blogger seeking to serve the Lord by posting some words that the Lord has given His Church.