“Is not this the fast that I choose: ... to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke? Is it not to share your bread with the hungry and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover him, and not to hide yourself from your own flesh?”
There are exactly 30 days from Purim to Passover, and these two holidays have always held a special relationship.
We commemorate Purim by reading the Megillah—telling the story of an anonymous orphan who became the queen of Persia. It’s the story of an attempt to exterminate a whole people—perpetrated by a hater of the Jewish people, who was serving as the king's advisor.
We commemorate Passover by reading the Passover Haggadah—telling the story of Exodus, and how the Jewish people went from being slaves in Egypt—rejected and humiliated—to become God’s chosen people.
Presently, we live in a time of bondage—a dark night of the soul. And while it may be comforting to distract ourselves from the burden, we cannot forget that these times of restriction—these opportunities for more fervent prayer and self-reflection—are important to our understanding of what freedom truly is. Light is best appreciated from the dark, and freedom is cast in more obvious contrast by the pressures of bondage and restriction.
God’s word has a lot to say on the subject. We invite you to dwell on this passage, taking it fully to heart.
“For freedom Messiah has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.” Galatians 5:1
Jews around the world open the reading of the Hagaddah (re-telling of the story of the exodus from Egypt) by declaring in Aramaic: Ha lachma anya di achalu avhatana b’ara d’mitzrayim..., which includes the line “All who are hungry, come and eat!”. In Hebrew lachma anya is the bread of the poor, the bread of affliction.
It is a beautiful gesture that expresses one of the core values of this holiday: everyone, especially aiming to the poor – no matter one’s income level – deserves to celebrate being free at Passover.
“This is the bread of affliction that our ancestors ate in the land of Egypt. All those who are hungry, let them enter and eat. All who are in need, let them come celebrate the Passover. Now we are here. Next year in the land of Israel. This year we are enslaved. Next year we will be free.” - Passover Haggadah
There is so much to hope for—in the coming months, and in the many years ahead as we continue to bless Israel and her people with the love of Yeshua.
The Vision for Israel team is busy in the coming weeks, distributing essential aid for Passover to hundreds of families in need, as well as to those who were affected by acts of terror, single parents, new immigrants, lone soldiers, and Holocaust survivors. The aid will be given in several locations in Jerusalem and the surrounding cities. We will also extend our hands to the southern and central regions of Israel.
Our goal is to reach 1,000 families (an average of over 4,000 people) to provide them with essential supplies for Passover, the total sum of which will cost about $100,000.
As we all look forward to the Passover, let’s take the opportunity to bless those who are hungry. After all, it is God’s desire for us to care for them.
Will you help us continue this joyful work setting the oppressed and the needy free? Your continued support means the world to us, and to all the dear people of Israel who depend on the blessings we have been able to distribute, thanks to you.