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  Tsiyon News

Tsiyon Messianic Radio Newsletter  - Vol 8.12 -  01/14/6013 TAM  -  03/26/13 AD

Eliyahu ben David Bet Midrash

The Sovereign Plan

Genesis 25:19-34

On the road to Tsiyon Hidden in Plain Sight Focus on Israel Tsiyon Reading Room Criggarious

The Sovereign Plan

Heel GrabberWhen Rebekah's days to be delivered were fulfilled, behold, there were twins in her womb. The first came out red all over, like a hairy garment. They named him Esau. After that, his brother came out, and his hand had hold on Esau’s heel. He was named Jacob. Genesis 25:24-26

HAPPY PASSOVER! - Tsiyon Road Passover broadcasting begins Tue, March 26, 6 PM, Jerusalem time, and continues for 48 hours. The Midrash is broadcast 8 times over that period. Listen to this radio presentation free at that time!

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Passover Special:

Oldest Documented Passover
Outside of the Scriptures

The Passover Papyrus from Elephantine, 419 BCE

Passover Papyrus Front

Passover Papyrus Back

Current Location: Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Berlin, Germany (P. 13464)

Language: Aramaic

Biblical Verses: Exodus 12:15–20, 23:15, Lev. 23:6–7, Num. 28:17–18, 2 Kings 25:26

 ..It is the Passover of YHWH ..This day shall be to you for a memorial, and you shall keep it a feast to YHWH: throughout your generations you shall keep it a feast by an ordinance forever. Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread; on the very first day you shall remove leaven from your houses, for whoever eats leavened bread from the first day to the seventh day, that person shall be cut off from Israel. (Exodus 12:11, 14, 15)

Details: The Elephantine Papyri are a collection of ancient Jewish manuscripts dating from the 5th century BC. They come from a Jewish community at Elephantine, then called Yeb, the island in the Nile at the border of Nubia (Sudan), which was probably founded as a military installation in about 650 BC during Manasseh's reign to assist Pharaoh Psammetichus I in his Nubian campaign. The dry soil of Upper Egypt preserved documents from the Egyptian border fortresses of Elephantine and Syene (Aswan). Hundreds of these Elephantine papyri, written in hieratic and Demotic Egyptian, Aramaic, Greek, Latin and Coptic, span a period of 1000 years.

One letter in particular, now known simply as the "Passover Papyrus", was a response to an earlier letter sent from the Elephantine community to the High Priest in Jerusalem. It was an inquiry as to the proper way to observe the celebration of Passover. It sets out the celebration of Passover on the evening of the 14th of Nisan, followed by the Feast of Unleavened Bread beginning on the 15th and continuing through the 21st. This is just as Torah designates, and is how we at Tsiyon still celebrate Passover today, in contrast with the typical modern Jewish practice of keeping Passover on the 15th rather than the 14th.

Translation: Here is a reconstruction in English of what the Passover Papyrus actually says:

[To my brothers, Ye]daniah and his colleagues the Jewish ga[rrison,] your brother Hanan[i]ah. May God [seek after] the welfare of my brothers [at all times.] And now, this year, year 5 of King Darius, it has been sent from the king to Arsa[mes ……… …]

Now, you thus count four[teen days in Nisan and on the 14th at twilight ob]serve [the Passover] and from the 15th day until the 21st day of [Nisan observe the Festival of Unleavened Bread. Seven days eat unleavened bread. Now,] be pure and take heed. [Do] n[ot do] work [on the 15th day and on the 21st day of Nisan.] Do not drink [any fermented drink. And do] not [eat] anything of leaven [nor let it be seen in your houses from the 14th day of Nisan at] sunset until the 21st day of Nisa[n at sunset. And b]ring into your chambers [any leaven which you have in your houses] and seal (them) up during [these] days. ...

[To] my brothers, Yedaniah and his colleagues the Jewish garrison, your brother Hananiah s[on of ??].


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From Eliyahu

Very fittingly for our Passover Midrash, we encounter the birth of Jacob/Israel; the first mention of him in Scripture. From before birth Jacob was predestined in the Sovereign Plan of YHWH to be the father of the Israelite nation! Interestingly, the birth of Jacob can very well be seen as foreshadowing the Passover birth of the Israelite nation that occurred several hundred years later.

In fact, the 1st century Torah scholar, Sha'ul/Paul, wrote about Jacob in Romans 9 indicating that Jacob actually pictures the faithful Remnant of Israel who are even now being gathered out of all nations as part of the Sovereign Plan of YHWH in our day! Yes, US, the Remnant, looking forward to the Second Exodus at one of these Passovers soon to come!

Brother Dave, Brother Glen, and I had an amazing time doing this Midrash together and I know that when you hear it you will feel very much a part of the excitement we enjoyed in doing it. All of us here at Tsiyon pray that you will be uplifted, strengthened and blessed this Passover, not only by the Midrash, but even more so by your precious fellowship with our Passover Lamb.

Passover Shalom!   

Eliyahu ben David 

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