5. Maggid

Recitation of the Service

05RecitReader: (The Four Questions)

Why is this night different from all other nights?

  1. On all other nights we eat leavened or unleavened bread. Why on this night do we eat only matzah, the unleavened bread?
  2. On all other nights we eat all kinds of herbs. Why on this night do we eat especially maror, the bitter herb?
  3. On all other nights we do not dip herbs even once. Why on this night do we dip twice, first the greens into salt water and then the bitter herbs into haroset?
  4. On all other nights we may eat at the table either sitting up or reclining. Why on this night do we recline?

Leader answers the questions, tells the story of the four children, and then retells the story of God’s dealings with the Israelites and Egyptians at the time of the Exodus, drawing parallels with the way God is dealing with His people and those who surround them in the world today. He shares about the finished work of the Messiah in fulfilling the Passover sacrifice, and then draws a parallel between God’s judgment of Egypt and the coming judgment of the world.

The wine cups are filled again in preparation for a recitation of the Ten Plagues.


When Pharaoh defied the command of God and refused to release the Israelites, he brought judgment upon himself and his people, for the Lord afflicted the land of Egypt with plagues.


These plagues came upon the Egyptians because of their evil disobedience; yet we do not rejoice over their downfall and defeat.


The Bible teaches that all people were created by God, even our enemies who would seek to destroy us.


We cannot rejoice when any person needlessly suffers, so we mourn the loss of the Egyptians and express grief over their destruction.


At this point in the service we spill wine from our cups at the mention of each of the ten plagues. Meditating upon the pain and suffering of these catastrophes, we cannot allow ourselves to drink the full measure. We express anguish that those who resist the will of God bring such terrible judgment upon themselves.

Each person spills out a drop of wine from his cup into a saucer at the mention of each of the plagues, a symbol of sadness that the victory had to be purchased through suffering.


1) Blood. 2) Frogs. 3) Gnats. 4) Flies. 5) Cattle disease. 6) Boils. 7) Hail.   8) Locusts. 9) Darkness. 10) Slaying of the First Born.


Is it for judgment that we praise God?


No, it is for His mercies that we praise Him.


Then let us praise God for His mercies.

People (singing):

In the presence of your people, I will praise your name,
For alone you are holy, enthroned on the praises of Israel.
Let us celebrate your goodness, and your steadfast love,
For your name is exalted, here on earth and in heaven above.
Lai, lai, lai, lai, lai, lai….

The Passover Symbols

Leader (pointing to the shank bone):

This shank bone reminds us of the Passover Lamb, slain for our redemption. Just as the blood of the sacrificial lamb applied over the doorposts of their houses in Egypt assured our forefathers that the death angel would pass over them, so the blood of Jesus, our Passover Lamb, applied by faith over the doorposts of our hearts assures us that we have entered into eternal life in Jesus, our Messiah and Lord, and that the death angel will pass over us.

Reader: (Hebrews 10.1-3, 11-14)

The law is only a shadow of the good things that are coming not the realities themselves. For this reason it can never, by the same sacrifices repeated endlessly year after year, make perfect those who draw near to worship. If it could, would they not have stopped being offered? For the worshippers would have been cleansed once for all, and would no longer have felt guilty for their sins. But those sacrifices are an annual reminder of sins, because it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. Day after day, every priest stands and performs his religious duties; again and again he offers the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But when the Messiah had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, He sat down at the right hand of God. Since that time He waits for his enemies to be made His footstool, because by one sacrifice He has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.

Reader: (John 1.29-34)

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! This is the one I meant when I said, ‘A Man who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’ I myself did not know Him, but the reason I came baptizing with water was that He might be revealed to Israel.” Then John gave this testimony: “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on Him. I would not have known Him, except that the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and remain is he who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’ I have seen and I testify that this is the Son of God.”

Leader points to the matzah.


This reminds us how, in the haste of their departure from Egypt, our forefathers had to take along unleavened dough. As we read in the Bible: And with the dough which they had brought with them out of Egypt they baked matzah, for the dough was unleavened. For they had been rushed out of Egypt, and they could not linger. For they had not made any provisions for the road. (Exodus 12.39)

Reader: (1 Corinthians 5.6-8)

Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you are really unleavened. For Jesus, our Passover Lamb, has been sacrificed. Let us, therefore, celebrate this festival, not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

Leader points to the bitter herbs.


This bitter herb reminds us of how bitter the Egyptians made the lives of our forefathers in Egypt. For we read, And they made their lives bitter with forced labor, in mortar and bricks, and in all manner of work in the fields. And in all this they drove our forefathers ruthlessly. In each following generation, every person who has been born of God is called upon to reflect with gratitude upon his deliverance from the bondage of the world. For we read in the Scriptures, In that day you shall teach your sons, saying, “All this is because of what God did for me when I went forth from Egypt.” (Exodus 13.8) It was not only our forefathers that the Holy One, blessed be He, redeemed; He redeemed us too, the living, together with them.

Reader: (Romans 8.18-21)

I consider that the present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. The creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.

People (with cups of wine uplifted):

It is our duty, therefore, to utter thanks and prayer, to sing praise and adoration, to Him who performed these wonders for our fathers and for us. He led us out of slavery into freedom, out of sorrow into joy, out of mourning into festivity, out of darkness into light, out of bondage into redemption. We shall sing Him a new song, Hallelujah!

People (setting down wine cups and singing):

I will sing unto the Lord
For He has triumphed gloriously,
The horse and rider has thrown into the sea. (Repeat)
The Lord, my God, my strength, my song,
Has now become my victory. (Repeat)
The Lord is God, and I will praise Him,
My Father’s God, and I will exalt Him. (Repeat)

Reader: (Psalm 86.8-10)

Among the Gods there is none like you, O Lord;
           No deeds can compare with yours.
All the nations you have made will come and worship before you, O Lord; They will bring glory to your name.
For you are great and do marvelous deeds;
          You alone are God.

Reader: (Revelation 15.3-4)

Great and marvelous are your deeds, Lord God Almighty. Just and true are your ways, King of the ages. Who will not fear you, O Lord, and bring glory to your name? For you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship before you, for your righteous judgments have been revealed.

People (singing):

Who is like Him, the Lion and the Lamb seated on the throne?
Mountains bow down, every ocean roars to the Lord of hosts.
Praise Adonai, from the rising of the sun ‘til the end of every day.
Praise Adonai, all the nations of the earth, all the angels and the saints
sing praise. (Repeat)

People (with wine cups uplifted):

Hallelujah! Blessed are you, O Lord our God, Ruler of the universe, Creator of the fruit of the vine and Author of our redemption.

Everyone drinks the second cup of wine (the cup of praise).

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