Christian Churches of God
The Night to be Much Observed
(Edition 1.0 19990306-19990306)
It is written: And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the Lord throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance forever.
Christian Churches of God
PO Box 369, WODEN ACT 2606, AUSTRALIA
(Copyright ã 1999 Wade Cox)
(Summary by John Pierce, Ed. Wade Cox)
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The Night to be Much Observed
The Night To Be Much Observed is a very important event in the biblical calendar. It is also called the Night of Watchings and this name has specific intent (see the paper The Passover (No. 98)). The traditional period referred to as the Passover in the early Christian Church was taken from the night of the Lord’s Supper.
Christ was crucified and died at 3.00 p.m on the afternoon of the Fourteenth of Nisan in accordance with the Passover slaughter. He died at the time the lambs were killed for the Passover meal, which commenced the Night To Be Much Remembered on the Fifteenth of the First month. The Passover in the early church was a generic term, which covered from 14 Nisan to the Wave-sheaf Sunday. The remaining days were classified as Unleavened Bread (see the paper God’s Calendar No. (156).
The relevant legislation for the Passover is found in Exodus 12:1-51. The day termed the Fourteenth was clearly determined from evening to evening. The night of the fourteenth preceded the day of the fourteenth. The day was seen as being from evening to evening and not morning to morning; or midnight to midnight.
The term Night of Watchings comes from the text at Exodus 12:42. The concept of watching comes from the passing over of the death Angel and the watching for the deliverance of our people. It also means to watch for the event in question.
That is the concept of the Passover, where we are protected through the blood of the lamb from the wrath of God. Both the Lord’s Supper of the Fourteenth and the meal of the Fifteenth of the First month (Abib or Nisan) together protect us. This night is prolonged in study and vigil. We are not meant to go to bed early on this night.
The night has meaning as a night of observation regarding Christ’s coming. It also pointed towards the crucifixion and burial and commenced the period up to the Wave-sheaf offering.
Clearly the two quotes (Jn. 13:25; Mk. 14:50-52) tell us that the activities of the Lord’s Supper and his arrest are not on the Passover evening. The texts show that it was the preparation evening of the Fourteenth day of the First month making ready for the Passover, which would be slaughtered on the afternoon of the next day from 3.00 p.m. to 5.00 p.m. He was placed in the tomb at evening at the beginning of the Fifteenth day of the month and the First day of Unleavened Bread when the Passover lamb was prepared to be roasted and eaten that night.
Deuteronomy 16:2 allows the Passover meal to be either of the flock or the herd and thus may be other clean meat than lamb. It is to be roasted and eaten at the place chosen for the purpose.
Deuteronomy 16:5-7 commands us to eat the Passover meal outside of our gates, in temporary accommodation. We are forbidden to eat the Passover in our own gates. We are then to turn into our tents in the morning. This is on the Fifteenth of the First month, the First Holy Day of Unleavened Bread. This means we may go to our normal place of living.
The Night to be Much Observed is a night of teaching the children the purpose of the evening (Ex. 12:25-38).
The watching for deliverance at the night of the Passover was kept as a memorial forever (Ex. 12:14). On that night we are to watch for our deliverance. On this evening Christ was buried and lay for three days and three nights in the earth. So he was buried on Wednesday evening then resurrected by the one True God on Saturday evening. On Sunday morning he ascended into Heaven as the Wave-sheaf offering at 9 a.m. This day begins the countdown to Pentecost and our harvest of the Church in the Holy Spirit.
With this act God took the firstborn of the world and Salvation was extended to the Gentiles (vs. 29-38). The Lord’s Supper is part of the procedure of this festival. It is the first night of the Fourteenth of the First month. The second night of the Fifteenth is the Passover meal. This symbolises the unification of the world under Messiah within Israel.
It will be remembered among all our people forever (Ex 13:14-16). It also looks forward to the next Exodus, which shall occur with the mighty hand of God (Isa. 66:18-24). This night is not only in the past. It is in the future and Scripture cannot be broken (Jer. 6:16-19).
We are required to re-establish the old ways and return to the law and abolish the calendars of the pagans and the Babylonian mysteries, established under the traditions of the rabbis under Hillel II in 358 CE (Eccl. 3:13). We are required to restore the truth once delivered (Rom. 15:4).
This Generation referred to by Christ in Mark 13:30 is the last generation. In one generation, or forty years, all the wars of the end will come to pass. Messiah will return and the Law will be restored. Watch therefore for you do not know when the master comes (Song of Songs 5:2; cf. the paper Song of Songs (No. 145)).