Exodus 12:8 – Everyone shall eat roast lamb that night, with unleavened bread and bitter herbs. (TLB)
Each spring when the grass turns green and those pesky little yellow flowers appear in my lawn once again, I am reminded of my mother and of the dandelion greens she served for dinner when I was growing up. However, as a student of the plants of the Bible, I am also reminded that dandelions symbolize the suffering of our Lord Jesus Christ.
There is perhaps no meal in all history more worthy of remembering than the Passover meal Jesus ate with His disciples during the week we now call Holy Week. Exodus 12:8, quoted above, describes the foods which are to make up the Passover celebration. It was the custom of the ancient Hebrews to eat five bitter herbs with their unleavened bread and lamb. Many herbs have been mentioned, but most botanists believe the five herbs to have been lettuce, endive, chicory, mint, and dandelion. Today we would probably refer to them as salad.
I no longer eat dandelions for dinner, but each spring as they appear in my lawn, I feel a sense of wonder that they were likely among the bitter herbs Jesus ate with His paschal lamb during Passover almost 2,000 years ago. When dandelions dot our landscape, they serve as a gentle reminder that our Lord Jesus Christ suffered and died for us. He became our Paschal Lamb, the Lamb Who takes away the sin of the world.
Prayer: Dear heavenly Father, we are so saddened when we think of that Last Supper and of Jesus' suffering and death on the cross, but we are eternally grateful that He came to save us from our sin. In His holy name we pray. Amen.