The Night of Watching

The “Night of Watching” (Leil Shimurim – ley-EEL shi-mur-EEM) is the name of the night after the Passover feast, when God redeemed Israel by slaying the firstborn sons of Egypt (Exodus 12:42). In Jewish tradition, it is said that “just as God redeemed his people on this night, so he will one day redeem them again.” It’s fascinating to see how God did this very thing – by offering his own son to redeem his people.

I shared this lovely poem with my email list a few days ago, and it was so well liked that I thought I’d share it here. It is by Cynthia Prentice, of Arlington, Texas. Thanks for sharing, Cynthia.

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Leil Shimurim – The Night of Watching

On the night of watching
Under the fullness of the Passover moon
The night all Israel lifted the Cup of Sanctification and in Celebration remembered how God brought them out from under The burden of the Egyptians…

He was there, in the garden grove, waiting to be handed over.

On the night of watching
Under the fullness of the Passover moon
The night all Israel lifted the Cup of Deliverance and in Celebration remembered how God delivered them from Bondage…

He was there, in the garden grove, waiting to be bound.

On the night of watching,
Under the fullness of the Passover moon
The night all Israel lifted the Cup of Redemption and in Celebration remembered how God redeemed them with an Outstretched arm…

He was there, in the garden grove, waiting to be betrayed.

On the night of watching
Under the fullness of the Passover moon
The night all Israel hoped the Messiah…the Anointed one
The Deliverer would come…

He was there, in the garden grove, waiting to be captured.

On the night of watching,
Under the fullness of the Passover moon
The night all Israel lifted the Cup of Protection and in celebration Remembered how God became their God, how he took them as His own, how he spared their firstborn…

The Firstborn of Creation declined the protection. He would not Be passed over. He set the cup down.

On the night of watching,
Under the fullness of the Passover moon
The night all Israel poured the Cup of Elijah, the Cup of God’s Wrath, the Cup all left untouched,
He was there, in the garden grove, with his face to the ground.

On that mountainside,
In the olive grove,
Of the heavy stone, used to crack and crush and squeeze the fruit,
The Geth-semane, that pressed the flesh to bring forth the oil,
He was pressed, as He prayed
Drops of sweat fell from him like blood to the ground.

Three times he cried, – “Father, If willing, take this cup from Me…yet not My will, but Yours be done.”

The cup in his hand was the cup meant for me
My sins were the weight that pressed as he prayed
That night I was rescued, protected, Passed Over
He took the cup…

And he drank it for me

We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the sins of us all.

 

Comments

6 Responses to “The Night of Watching”

  1. 1
    Rena|April 9, 2012

    That is a beautiful poem,thank you for sharing it.

  2. 2
    Gina S|February 4, 2013

    Cynthia, that is wonderful poetry! So well written . . . & enlightening. Thank you.

  3. 3
    Stan Miyamoto|April 7, 2014

    Dear Leil, What an absolutely amazing poem! Beautiful yet powerful, tangible yet wondrous. Thank you. I would like to use it in our good Friday service if you don’t mind. Of course it will be only right to cite you as the author.

  4. 4
    Lois Tverberg|April 7, 2014

    Stan, glad you were blessed by this poem. Please feel free to share it. The author of the poem is Cynthia Prentice — she should get the credit. The phrase “Leil Shimurim” means “Night of Watching” in Hebrew.

  5. 5
    Victor Stutzman|April 13, 2014

    So moving! So touching! The poem was excellent leaving us a picture of what it must have been like the night Yeshua was in the Garden of Gethsemane!

  6. 6
    Charles Lee|April 16, 2014

    Dear Lois, What a blessing to read this rich, meaningful poem. Pray that every night of our lives will be a “Night of Watching” till we meet our Hebrew Lord Jesus.

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