An Explanation of the Afikomon Originally, celebrants were required to partake of a morsel of the lamb as the last food eaten during the Passover evening. During those times when there was no temple or tabernacle in which to perform animal sacrifice, the afikomon (a Greek word meaning “that which comes after”) took the place of the lamb. The afikomon is the most important symbolic food of the Passover feast. It directly represents the Paschal Lamb and is absolutely mandatory in the Passover ritual. As Jesus Christ became The bread of Life and ended blood sacrifice, the afikomon replaced the Lamb. All celebrants are required to partake of the afikomon later on in the Passover ceremony (a piece at least the size of an olive). The symbolism of the Savior’s suffering, burial, and resurrection is unmistakable, since the bread, already pierced and striped during its preparation, is broken, wrapped in a linen napkin, “buried” or hidden, brought forth again, then ransomed for a gift at the end of the feast. (Some Oriental Jewish families wrap the afikomon in red.) The position of the afikomon in the envelope is also significant. The upper matzah in the envelope represents the High Priesthood, the middle matzah represents the Levitical Priesthood, and the lower matzah represents the lay member. It was the Levites, supervised by the High Priests, who made the sacrifice in the Temple. It is the afikomon that Jesus used as the sacramental bread during the Last Supper.


haggadah Section: Yachatz