Andy teases that I’m secretly Jewish—I, the preacher’s kid from Oklahoma. I must have some Hebrew roots, he says, considering the mezuzah by our door and the Jewish holidays I make our family celebrate.
It’s true. Over the years, our family has stamped out Haman’s name during Purim and built a booth in our living room for Sukkot. (It was made of branches from our backyard lemon tree, and we stayed in it for only an hour—not a week.)
My favorite holiday is Passover. With matzo and Martinelli’s, we answer the Seder questions and recall how God rescued his people. One year, my friend and I attended a Passover meal at a local temple. I loved every minute. When the rabbi said, “Maybe this will be the year that redemption comes,” I audibly gasped and shifted in my chair so much that my friend laid her hand on my arm. “But redemption has come!” I whispered.
That night, I learned a song—the “Dayenu,” which means, “It would’ve been enough.” In verse after verse, the song recalls God’s provision for his people. It says, in essence, “If God had only led us out of Egypt, it would’ve been enough. If God had only split the sea for us, it would’ve been enough. If God had only fed us manna in the desert—and not done anything else for us—it still would’ve been enough. But God did all of those things and more for Israel.” Dayenu is a celebration—a call to remember and be grateful.
And yet…one year, it struck me: No. No! It wouldn’t have been enough. God’s rescue and miraculous provision were amazing displays of his power and mercy, yes, but they weren’t enough to bring God’s people all the way back to him. Even all those miracles still weren’t enough to pay for sin.
“…you were redeemed…with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect… Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God.”
1 Peter 1:18-21
Until Jesus Christ became the Passover Lamb…it wasn’t enough. But through him, and in him, and because of him…truly, redemption has come!