Exodus 12 describes the commandment to keep the Passover, and verse 14 describes Passover as a lasting ordinance. The New Testament links Passover with the Festival of Unleavened Bread as both are put into perspective to Christ. 1 Corinthians 5:7 states “Get rid of the old yeast, so that you may be a new unleavened batch-as you really are. For Christ, our Passover lamb has been sacrificed.” – 1 Corinthians 5:7 (NIV)
Counting of the Omer begins just after Passover (this is for spiritual discipline like Lent)
Leviticus 23:15 records the counting of the Omer. The counting of the Omer is a very critical time because it has several stages as it moves from the start of the Exodus from Egypt through unfaithfulness and finely to fruitfulness as it ends just prior to the Festival of First Fruits. The Golden Calf and the near destruction of Israel occur during this time.
One should note that as a result of the Golden calf Moses prayed to God that God would turn back his anger and not destroy the Israelites as he had planned to instead make a nation through Moses as recorded in Exodus 32:9-11. God did not destroy the entire nation and make his promises only good through Moses, but Romans 9:3 shows Paul with the consideration to desire to wish himself cursed and cut off from Christ for the his people’s sake. Thus Romans 9 later in the New Testament shows how God made the choice to reject the physical descendents of Israel in favor of adoption and election, and God gave the Church the promises of Christ mainly through Paul (like he had planned to do with Moses).
Feast of Unleavened Bread
1 Corinthians 5:8 actually describes the keeping of the feast in the New Testament. The following is said about keeping the Feast of Unleavened Bread. “Therefore let us keep the Festival, not with the old bread leavened with malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.” (NIV) Exodus 12:17-20 shows the commandment to practice the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and the commandment was necessary because the Jews had been forced out of Egypt by Pharaoh soon after the Passover. The Hebrews had to make new bread without a leavening agent because the departure from Egypt was so sudden, and so that is what formed the feast of unleavened bread. What is perhaps unique is that the New Testament practice is to associate sin with the leaven and to cast it out of the believer’s life just like starting a new lump, and in this way God’s children no longer live in the bondage of sin.
Counting of the Omer ends just prior to next feast (the feast of weeks)