Monthly Archives: November 2012

Meaning of Passover

I’ve been revising our family Haggadah this year. Today while I was doing some housekeeping, I was listening to an old Bill Cloud teaching. He briefly touched on the Hebraic understanding of Pesach. I was excited because I’ve been praying that the Father would bring to my mind all those little details that are not only useful, but edifying to include in our Haggadah. This is one of those “little” details that I always seem to remember “after the fact;” so, I file it away for the next Pesach. Not this year!

The Hebrew meaning of the word Pesach is one of those pearls that often gets trampled underfoot. When you open your concordance or bible software to search out this most important word, it becomes more than a little confusing to the English speaking mind. What really transpired in that crucial hour of the original Pesach?

Here is how Strong’s defines Pesach:



A primitive root; to hop, that is, (figuratively) skip over (or spare); by implication to hesitate; also (literally) to limp, to dance: – halt, become lame, leap, pass over.

Jeff Benner’s lexicon is usually what I reference for deeper meaning, but his only has this for the Pesach entry:

AHLB#: 2618 (V)

Hop: To hop from one place or another. Also to be lame as one who hops on one leg. [freq. 7] (vf: Paal, Niphal, Piel) |kjv: pass over, halt, lame, leap| {str: 6452} – Lame: As one who hops one leg. [freq. 14] |kjv: lame| {str: 6455}

Hop? Lame? What does Passover have to do with lameness? If one looks at Strong’s #6455 as referenced, they will indeed find that to be lame is a derivative of this word:


pissêach pis-say’-ak

From  H6452; lame: – lame.

Now, if you are unaware as to how this could possibly reference the Passover, read on. I just love it when YHVH shows out; and I assume you do too or you wouldn’t be reading this post. Do you recall the old adage “a picture is worth a thousand words?”

Well, that is exactly what the Father has done with the Hebrew word, Pesach. Pesach describes the hopping or fluttering that a mother bird makes as she protects her nest. She hops back and forth from branch to branch or from one side of the nest to the other. This is the action that is portrayed in the word Pesach, and it is indicative of how Adonai spared His people during the tenth plague.

While the angel of death swept through the land of Egypt killing all the first-borns, YHWH was “pesaching” His people who had obediently applied the Lamb’s blood to their doorposts. Thus, the miracle of Pesach isn’t exactly how we often envision it. YHWH hovered, fluttered, and hopped about the homes of the faithful, protecting them as judgment came to Egypt. (Ex. 12:12) Did you catch the subtle difference? The death angel didn’t just skip over their homes; instead, YHWH’s creative Holy Spirit hovered and fluttered about their doorways like a mother bird protecting her chicks.

This brings fresh meaning to the following verses:

You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians and how I bore you on eagles’ wings, and brought you to Myself. (Ex. 19:4)

For YHWH’s portion is His people; Jacob is the allotment of His inheritance. He found him in a desert land, And in the howling waste of a wilderness; He encircled him, He cared for him, He guarded him as the pupil of His eye. “Like an eagle that stirs up its nest, That hovers over its young, He spread His wings and caught them, He carried them on His pinions” YHWH alone guided him, And there was no foreign god with him. (Dt. 32:9-12)

“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, just as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not have it! “Behold, your house is left to you desolate; and I say to you, you will not see Me until the time comes when you say, ‘BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF YHWH!'” (Lk. 13:34-35)

Adonai protects His people by hovering, fluttering, or hopping around them, forming an impenetrable fortress of protection. This mirrors the Spirit of God hovering over the faces of the waters on Day One of creation, a day akin to Passover. This is the true Hebrew meaning and context of the word Pesach in Exodus. It draws one’s attention back to One Day, Yom Echad, and the Holy Spirit of creation; it is both a beginning and an eternal end. Chaos and darkness are pierced with His light that both judges and delivers.


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