4. Keep Passover

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4. Keep Passover

The fourth requirement is to keep Passover.  This requirement includes not eating leavened bread for a week, and includes meeting during Passover.  For the dates of Passover, we will just use the Jewish dates.  But the rabbis, in their never-ending quest to distort the Torah, have extended Passover to 8 days.  We will ignore the 8th day.  The meeting will be on the Saturday of Passover.

You must eat unleavened bread for seven days. On the first day you must remove yeast from your houses. Whoever eats what is leavened from the first day through the seventh day must be cut off from Israel. You are to hold a sacred assembly on the first day and another sacred assembly on the seventh day.
Exodus 12:15-16

This makes the two requirements clear, to not eat leavened bread and to hold a sacred assembly.  Modern Judaism emphasizes the first of these requirements and ignores the second.  We will emphasize the second.

The reason for the first requirement, not eating leavened bread, is explained here:

You must not eat leavened bread with it. For seven days you are to eat unleavened bread with it, the bread of hardship—because you left the land of Egypt in a hurry—so that you may remember for the rest of your life the day you left the land of Egypt.
Deuteronomy 16:3

So the purpose is to remind you of the exodus from Egypt which symbolizes freedom.  Freedom is the highest value in the Old Testament, which is why Passover is the most important holiday.  The actual details of the dietary restrictions, we will leave up to each Mikraite to decide for himself.  At the least, don't eat regular bread.  That is enough of a reminder, but feel free to extend the restriction as you see fit.

In the Torah, the requirement to have a sacred assembly is no less important than the requirement to not eat bread, and both are mentioned in every description of Passover.  This requirement makes sense, it is very important for people to get together to foster unity.  The reason for having this assembly applies just as well to us Mikraites as it did to the Israelites.  But we have an additional reason, as a way to weed out inactive members.  Failing to attend without good reason will result in the person being cut off from Mikraite.

There is no excuse to miss the meeting because one can easily plan for it in advance.  For example, google "passover 2017" and you will see that the rabbinic Passover is Monday, April 10 to Tuesday, April 18.  Remove the day wrongly added by the rabbis and you get Monday, April 10 to Monday, April 17.  This means that the meeting is on Saturday, April 15.  We will all meet at this time and we will decide the location in advance each year.

There is a longer discussion of Passover here.