I want to draw attention to what I think is one of Venema’s most important points on the Old Testament evidence for paedo-communion (PC). He says this:
Any consideration of the precedent of the Old Testament Passover must take into account the important distinction between the first and subsequent celebrations of the Passover (pp. 67-68).
Now, it is important also to note that Venema regards the evidence as ambiguous. The provisions did not expressly prohibit the women and younger children from participation, but neither do the provisions require their participation. What is the exegetical evidence for this distinction between the original Passover and the yearly celebration of it? The initial Passover is described in Exodus 12-13 (including also the Feast of Unleavened Bread), whereas the yearly celebration is detailed for us in Deuteronomy 16.
I think Venema would grant the point (and I probably would, too) that young children participated in the initial Passover described in Exodus 12-13, for the simple reason that there would have been no other food for them to eat, as they ate it in haste.
In Deuteronomy 16, we find the following: Verse 16 specifically describes the males as appearing before the Lord God in the place which He chooses (בַּמָּקוֹם אֲשֶׁר־יִבְחַר יְהוָה). This last phrase is precisely the same phrase as is used in verse 7 in the particular instructions for the yearly Passover celebration. Since this phrase links the two passages together, it is more than reasonable to conclude that the Passover celebration described in the first part of Deuteronomy 16 is part of those three-times-a-year appearances of the males before the Lord. There is a two-tiered structure, therefore, to the celebration of the various feasts. There is the home celebration, in which everyone partook (see Deut. 16:14), and there is the solemn assembly, in which only the males partook. The point here is NOT that the evidence points to only the males participating in anything having to do with the Passover. The point is that the evidence is ambiguous with regard to participation. After all, is the Lord’s Supper in line more with the initial Passover commands, or is it more in line with the yearly Passover celebration? The question would be difficult to answer, I think, and that makes the evidence from the Passover shaky at best when used to support PC.