We have now told the story of Passover…but wait! We’re not quite done. There are still some symbols on our Seder plate we haven’t talked about yet.
The shank bone represents the Pesach, the lamb sacrifice made in the days of the Temple for the Passover holiday. In fact, the holiday is called the Pesach, from the Hebrew word meaning “to pass over,” because God "passed over" the houses of our ancestors in Egypt when visiting plagues upon our oppressors. The Israelites were instructed to smear the blood of a lamb across the door of their homes so God would not afflict them with plagues delivered to the Egyptians.
The maror (bitter herbs) provide a visceral reminder of the bitterness of slavery, the life of hard labor our ancestors experienced in Egypt.
The charoset represents the mortar that laid between the stones of the pyramids the Hebrews built. It also reminds us of the sweetness of that freedom.
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