In the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the Jews were to remove the leaven from their houses. This wasn’t just to clean their houses. In Scripture, leaven is often used to represent sin. God was using an everyday object, leavened bread, to act as an object lesson for His people. He was freeing them from the slavery of Egypt and taking them to the promised land.
God’s Instruction to Remove Leaven
Exodus 12: 15 For seven days the bread you eat must be made without yeast. On the first day of the festival, remove every trace of yeast from your homes…18 The bread you eat must be made without yeast from the evening of the fourteenth day of the first month until the evening of the twenty-first day of that month. 19 During those seven days, there must be no trace of yeast in your homes.
Exodus 13:3 So Moses said to the people, “This is a day to remember forever—the day you left Egypt, the place of your slavery. Today the Lord has brought you out by the power of his mighty hand. (Remember, eat no food containing yeast.)
God was preparing His people to focus on what He was doing, because they couldn’t free themselves from slavery.
Jesus Removed our “Leaven”
Jesus most probably celebrated an early Passover meal with His disciples on Maundy Thursday. That would make Good Friday Passover. The lambs were killed at 3 pm, the same time Jesus died on the cross. Thus, the first day of Unleavened Bread Jesus was in the tomb. Jesus was removing our sin, or our “leaven.”
God had freed the Hebrews from the slavery of Egypt, but now Jesus would free us from the slavery of sin. This is something we could not do on our own. Paul gives us insight into how we are freed from sin. Romans 6: 16 Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living. 17 Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you wholeheartedly obey this teaching we have given you. 18 Now you are free from your slavery to sin, and you have become slaves to righteous living.
We Should Live as New Bread
1 Corinthians 5: 6 Your boasting about this is terrible. Don’t you realize that this sin is like a little yeast that spreads through the whole batch of dough? 7 Get rid of the old “yeast” by removing this wicked person from among you. Then you will be like a fresh batch of dough made without yeast, which is what you really are. Christ, our Passover Lamb, has been sacrificed for us. 8 So let us celebrate the festival, not with the old bread of wickedness and evil, but with the new bread of sincerity and truth.
To hear more about removing the leaven, listen here: