Hallel: Ma’ariv Pesach: Consecration III
We sing the third paragraph as part of the song that will make us free, as if we were singing while offering the original Pesach Offering, the mitzvah that earned us the merit to be freed:
“Please speak in the ears of the people: Let each man request of his fellow and each woman from her fellow silver vessels and gold vessels (Exodus 11:2).” God asked Moshe to make a special effort to prevail upon the Jews to request valuables from their Egyptian neighbors, to prevent Abraham from holding a grievance against God who had promised that, “Afterwards they will go out with great possessions (Genesis 15:14-15).” [Rashi]
God was “asking,” with “Please,” so that they would be able to leave Egypt with great wealth and honor! To which they responded:
“Not we, God, not we, but Your Name deserves honor for Your kindness, Your truth.”
They offered their Pesach for God, not for themselves, to earn freedom. They served only to honor His Name.
This is our song too, on this night of Pesach, when we declare our intention to celebrate the Seder to honor His Name:
They were experiencing, as will we at the Seder, how service of God is a relationship with Him, not just observing the rules. This is unlike any other religion. They sang as they offered their Pesach, and we sing with them:
How can the pagans ask, “Where is their God?”
Now our God in the heavens did just what He desired.
Their silver and gold statues are the work of human hands.
They have mouths but do not speak, they have eyes but do not see, they have ears but do not hear, they have noses but do not smell. Hand – but do not feel. Legs – but do not walk. They do not even groan.
Their makers will become like them, all who trust in them.
They sensed as they offered their Pesach that this was the permanent reality of a relationship with God. They declared their intention to always function trusting that what they did, mattered to the Creator. We sing with them:
Israel: Trust in God! Their Help and Protection!
House of Aaron: Trust in God! Their Help and Protection!
Those who fear God: Trust in God! Their Help and Protection!”