3 Reasons Why the Seder Should Be Part of Your Easter Celebrations
As Christ followers, most of us are familiar with Passover—the annual Jewish remembrance of the Jews’ liberation from slavery in Egypt. Somewhat less familiar is the observance of a Passover Seder dinner. While we may have heard the word “seder” (meaning “order” in Hebrew), most of us don’t know much about the actual celebration itself.
The Passover Seder dinner is a traditional feast which marks the beginning of the weeklong Passover holiday. Held on the first (or first and second) evening of Passover, it is a ritual retelling of the deliverance of the Jewish people from Pharaoh, as told in the Old Testament book of Exodus. This retelling involves eating symbolic food and drink, and praising God for his blessings.
How does Seder connect to Easter? After all, these are two totally different religious holidays, observing two totally different biblical events.
The connection is Jesus Himself!
The Last Supper was actually a Seder dinner. When Jesus invited His disciples to partake in the very first communion, he transformed Seder into an observance of not only the Passover, but of His sacrifice. This means that you have already been celebrating a Seder meal, every time you participate in communion.
Here are three great reasons to observe Seder:
1. Seder is an opportunity to go deeper into God’s Word.
While most of us have a very clear understanding of why we observe Easter, we don’t usually dwell on its connection to the Old Testament. Jesus is the fulfillment of Old Testament prophesy and law. And Jesus was the one who expanded the meaning of the Seder celebration and its elements, using it to establish the practice of communion.
Because a Seder dinner incorporates all five senses, it is an especially effective teaching tool. By experiencing the celebration, instead of just learning or reading about it, it becomes something so much more tangible and impactful.
2. Seder can become an amazing annual tradition for you and your family.
You can make Seder your own! It is a great way to blend your current Easter traditions with something new.
For example, Seder dinner includes a hard-boiled egg. Using the eggs that you dyed for Easter would be a great way to emphasize a tangible connection between the two celebrations. Does your family enjoy baking? Making Easter Bread that is then used for Seder would be a perfect tradition for you and your loved ones.
Make Seder something that your family looks forward to each year. Make it fun!
3. Seder is a reason to celebrate!
Although the Seder dinner does have a specific order, scripted blessings, and defined symbolic foods, it is not meant to be a stuffy solemn occasion. It includes games, prayer, and fun! You can make it as formal or informal as you want.
Hosting a Seder dinner can sound intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. You can make it as complicated or as simple as you like. For a video explaining Seder, look here. And for a simple “how to” guide that you can print and use at home, look here.
Seder is the perfect opportunity to rejoice in the New Covenant, created by Jesus. The most important part of your family’s Seder celebration? Being together and celebrating God’s amazing love for us.
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