We like to shop at a large warehouse retailer, but we must have a membership to do so. Their defining membership is a card that you must show to enter the store. If you don’t have a membership, you can’t purchase anything from their store. Many clubs and even churches have ways to define their membership.
Festival of Unleavened Bread Defined the Jewish People
Exodus 12: 19 During those seven days, there must be no trace of yeast in your homes. Anyone who eats anything made with yeast during this week will be cut off from the community of Israel. If you refused to take part in the feast of Unleavened Bread, you were no longer a member of the Jewish community. The Jewish people defined themselves as the ones who God freed from slavery in Egypt. This festival set a boundary of who was Jewish and who was not.
This may sound cruel to our 21st century ears. We are used to rugged individualism and like to do things the way we want to, not necessarily how the group thinks.
Defining Membership as a Christian
We would say that a Christian isone who professes belief in the teachings of Jesus Christ. This not only hold true for our life here on earth but has eternal consequences. John 3: 15 so that everyone who believes in him (Jesus) will have eternal life.16 “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.
There would be those that say this is too exclusive, that we should be able to trust in any god if we are sincere. That sounds like a nice line, but it isn’t Biblical. God gave the Jewish people a boundary of the Feast of Unleavened bread to define membership in the Jewish community. God also defines who will spend eternity with Him by faith in Jesus.
Just as the Jewish people could not free themselves from the slavery of Egypt, we could not free ourselves from the slavery to sin. God provided a way out of both types of slavery. God was willing to step into time in the form of Jesus to pay a price for our sins that we could not pay. This He offers as a free gift if we will only believe.
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[1,2]Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188.