Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Are we, Believers, all that we are called to be?


“Your glorying is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump?  Therefore purge out the old leaven so that you may be a new lump since you truly are unleavened.  For indeed CHRIST our PASSOVER was sacrificed for us.  Therefore let us keep the feast; not with old leaven nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth” I Cor. 5:6-8 NKJV
Leaven – usually yeast or baking powder, is used to produce fermentation, especially in bread dough.  As leaven sours the dough, tiny gas bubbles are produced which causes the dough to rise.  Leaven is found not only in breads and rolls but in drinks that have barley or grain content.Unleavened is food consisting of no yeast.
When the Israelites fled from Egypt, they did so in haste in response to GOD’s command.  They were told to make bread without leaven because there was no time for the dough to rise.  GOD commanded Moses to tell the children of Israel to remember this time when they fled by commemorating the Feast of Unleavened Bread by eating Unleavened Bread for seven days.  On the first day of this Feast, they are to remove all leaven from their homes.  This is usually done the day before Passover.  Exodus 12:15   No leaven shall be seen among you in all your territory for seven days. Deuteronomy 16:4It is not enough  to simply refrain from eating leaven, or touching leaven or even from looking at leaven by storing it away in a hidden place.  All leaven must be purged out.  It was unlawful NOT to follow this biblical command.
Observant Jewish households begin the painstaking preparation weeks before Passover.  Walls are washed and painted, cooking utensils are scalded, clothing is washed with pockets turned inside out, carpets are cleaned, vacuum bags are discarded.  Special china is brought out for the feast.Sin is often pictured as leaven in Scripture (Matt. 16:6, Mark 8:15, Luke 12:1, Galatians 5:9). This is so because leaven rapidly permeates the dough, contaminating it, souring it, fermenting it and swelling it to many times its original size without changing its weight.
The prophetic meaning of the Feast of Unleavened Bread is found in the work of the Messiah.  It pictures the burial of the Messiah.  HE was buried with the rich in Joseph of Arimathaea’s tomb (Matt. 27:57-60).  He was honored in this manner because He was a pure, sinless (without leaven) sacrifice.  HE died not for HIS own transgressions, but for ours.  HIS body did not turn to dust (Psalm 16:10).  HE was NOT under the curse to return to dust.  HE was a pure and sinless sacrifice.  HE came forth from the grave on the third day after HE took our sins to the grave and buried them there.  HE fulfilled the Feast of Unleavened Bread in that HE was a pure (without leaven) sacrifice.We have been told in I Cor. 5:7-8 to “purge out the old leaven so that you may be a new lump since you are truly unleavened.  For Indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us.  Therefore let us keep the feast not with the old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice or wickedness but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.”  By faith believers have accepted the sacrifice of the Passover Lamb.  We have been delivered by the true Passover Lamb.  We are now living in the Feast of the Unleavened Bread where purity and separation from leaven are required.  Believers need to not only get rid of the large conspicuous loaves on the table and leave the little pieces of leaven scattered on the floor.  Those little pieces will contaminate everything else (I Cor. 5:6).  That’s the reason why the Jewish families, in ancient Israel, when preparing for the feast made certain that the corners were also swept clean of any leaven that may be hidden, even under the stove.  HE commanded them to purge it out, all of it. 
In GOD’s sight, believers are now unleavened (justified and pure) and are called to lives of holiness.  Why keep living as if we’re not?  As believers, we need to thoroughly purge our lives.  It is time that we take the candle of GOD’s Word and search every corner of our being.  The task is not done until all the leaven is purged.  Ask the Holy Spirit to show us the little specks that we may not see.  Why, because CHRIST, our Passover was sacrificed for us? I Cor. 5:7Create in me a clean heart, O GOD and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Psalm 51:10.
HIS command is Be holy, for I am HOLY.  I Peter 1:16