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Organization explains Christian themes in Jewish holiday

SOUTH POINT – Prayers for Israel, a Seder plate and the removal of leaven all are part of the Passover feast, but what does the Hebrew holy day have to do with modern Christianity?<!—->.

Tuesday, March 26, 2002

SOUTH POINT – Prayers for Israel, a Seder plate and the removal of leaven all are part of the Passover feast, but what does the Hebrew holy day have to do with modern Christianity?

Plenty.

And members of South Point United Methodist Church explored their faith last night through the feast of the Passover.

Rick Dumas, a volunteer with "Jews for Jesus" presented "Christ in the Passover," a program aimed at shedding New Testament light into the traditions of the Jewish faith.

Through the story and traditions of Passover, Dumas explained, Christians can understand their own faith.

"Look closely," he said, as he went through the steps of the Passover feast, "You’ll see the death and resurrection in the feast."

For example, Dumas explained, the matzah, or unleavened bread, demonstrates a life not "puffed up" with sin. The stripes on the bread, he explained, represents the stripes on Christ, who, Dumas explained, represents the final Passover lamb.

Passover, he continued, is the Jewish celebration of leaving the slavery of Egypt. Likewise, Passover for the Christian represents leaving the slavery of the sin.

The Rev. Pete Shaffer, the church’s pastor, said the program brings a part of the Jewish culture and religion to the Christian congregation. He said the Christian religion is rooted in Judaism and the Passover feast allows Christians to see how their faith is orchestrated by God.