Preparing the Shank Bone
This is one of the most special projects of preparation for the Passover. The Shank bone, the forearm, of a lamb is one of the items on the Passover Seder Plate. This bone may be ordered from the meat manager at the grocery store. Note: when ordering, ask the meat manager to make sure the bone is cut below the joint… so the forearm bone for the Seder Plate will not be cut or broken because this bone is a symbol, a picture on the Seder Plate.
Here’s the challenge: to remove the joint & meat from the bone without breaking the bone of the lamb. Of course, it would be easy to boil the bone in water and allow the meat to fall off… But, God gave specific instructions for the Passover Lamb to be roasted with fire. God said it was not to be raw or boiled in water, but roasted with fire (Exodus 12:8).
So the beauty of this project is to roast the bone, either in the oven or on an open fire outside, and then scrape all the meat off the bone. It’s a great project for father & son and provides a lot of time for discussion and wondering of why God wanted the Israelites to roast the lamb instead of boiling it. It provides opportunity to talk about how careful everyone must have been not to break any of the bones of the lamb. God says, “you are not to break a bone of it” (Exodus 12:46). And there’s a reason why.
None of the bones were to be broken because it was a picture of the Messiah. None of His bones were broken. And so, too, with Yeshua – the LAMB OF GOD – none of His bones were broken! “So the soldiers came…when they saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear… For these things came to pass to fulfill the Scripture, “Not a bone of Him shall be broken” (John 19: 33-36).
We will not be sacrificing a real lamb this year for Passover…that’s why there’s only the lamb bone on the Seder Plate. This lamb’s bone is a symbol to remind us of Yeshua, our Messiah. It reminds us of Yeshua’s sacrifice. He is the Passover Lamb who has been slain. “The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29,36). He was sacrificed “once for all time” (Hebrews 10:12).
This bone of the lamb for the Seder Plate
comes from the front leg, the forearm, of the lamb.
This word for ‘arm’ in Exodus 6:6 is zeroah in Hebrew.
This, too, is a picture of the Messiah.
Let’s look at some Scripture that refers to the arm, the zeroah, of the LORD. Think about this…Yeshua sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty. When Scripture refers to the outstretched arm, it makes us think about Him, the One who sits at God’s right hand
Exd 6:6 “I am YHVH, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will deliver you from their bondage. I will also redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments.
Deut 5:15 “You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and YHVH your God brought you out of there by a mighty hand and by an outstretched arm: therefore YHVH your God commanded you to observe the sabbath day”
2 Kings 17:35-39 “You shall not fear other gods, nor bow down yourselves to them nor serve them nor sacrifice to them. But YHVH, who brought you up from the land of Egypt with great power and with an outstretched arm, Him you shall fear. And to Him you shall bow yourselves down, and to Him you shall sacrifice… and He will deliver you from the hand of all your enemies”
Psalm 136:10-12, 24 “To Him who smote the Egyptians in their firstborn, For His lovingkindness is everlasting, And brought Israel out from their midst, For His lovingkindness is everlasting, With a strong hand and an outstretched arm, For His lovingkindness is everlasting… And has rescued us from our adversaries, For His lovingkindness is everlasting”
Jeremiah 32:17,21 “Ah Lord God! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth, by Your great power and by Your outstretched arm! Nothing is too difficult for You… You brought Your people Israel out of the land of Egypt with signs and with wonders, and with a strong hand and with an outstretched arm and with great terror”
Isaiah 53:1 “Who had believed our message? And to whom had the arm of YHVH been revealed?”
Isaiah 59:16 “And He saw that there was no man, and was astonished that there was no one to intercede; Then His own arm brought salvation to Him, and His righteousness upheld Him”
Isaiah 63:12 “Who caused His glorious arm to go at the right hand of Moses, Who divided the waters before them to make for Himself an everlasting name”