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The Passover of the Jews???

The Passover of the Jews???

New post on Hoshana Rabbah Blog
by Natan Lawrence
John 2:13John 2:13
English: King James Version (1611) - KJV

13 And the Jews' passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem,  

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, John 6:4John 6:4
English: King James Version (1611) - KJV

4 And the passover, a feast of the Jews, was nigh.  

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John 2:13John 2:13
English: King James Version (1611) - KJV

13 And the Jews' passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem,  

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, “Passover of the Jews”
(See also John 5:5; 6:4; 11:55; 12:1; 13:1John 5:5; 6:4; 11:55; 12:1; 13:1
English: King James Version (1611) - KJV

5 And a certain man was there, which had an infirmity thirty and eight years. 4 And the passover, a feast of the Jews, was nigh. 55 And the Jews' passover was nigh at hand: and many went out of the country up to Jerusalem before the passover, to purify themselves. 12 1 Then Jesus six days before the passover came to Bethany, where Lazarus was which had been dead, whom he raised from the dead. 13 1 Now before the feast of the passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end.  

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Have you ever wondered why John often uses this phrase? What other Passovers were there that necessitated specifying which Passover he was referring to?

This “Passover of the Jews” is in opposition to the Passover feasts held by competing religious sects of the time (e.g., the Essenes at Qumran and the Samaritans). The modern Samaritans following ancient calendric traditions, for example, will hold their Passover on May 4 in 2012 as opposed to April 6, which is the actual date on the biblical calendar.

The ancient Qumran community embraced an “unorthodox liturgical calendar that [set] them apart from the rest of Jewry” (The Complete Dead Sea Scrolls in English, by Geza Vermes, p. 41).

For example, on the Qumran community’s solar-based calendar that is based on a 364-day year, the Passover always fell on a Wednesday (Ibid. p. 79).

As you can see, determining on what days the biblical feasts fall was as controversial then as it is now!

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