Whether or not the world realizes it or not, creation is the very proof of the existence of God, creation identifies God.
The Sabbath is a weekly memorial of God’s creation, a weekly reminder of God’s power to create, it therefore identifies God to us, keeps us in the true memory and true worship of the true God. No other day but the 7th day of the week (not the first day of the week) could have that great significance and meaning. It was designed to keep us in the true worship of God.
Also in like manner, God gave His Church seven annual Sabbaths; these Holy Days were given to keep God’s begotten children in the true memory and worship of God. How? By keeping us constantly in the understanding of God’s great plan of redemption. These Holy Days picture the different time or epoch in God’s plan of redemption.
God’s whole story of the redemption of man is found in these feast days, and we are to reenact them year after year continually. God purposes to impress the truths these high Sabbaths picture upon the minds of His children through all time. By doing this, it keeps God’s Church in the true understanding of His plan.
Now when a religious organization rejects these days as being Jewish and no longer necessary, then they will have to come up with something that will satisfy their congregation, such as Easter or Christmas.
Today most churches teach that Jesus Christ finished the plan of redemption on the cross. But the truth of the matter is that the death of Jesus Christ was the very first event in God’s great plan for man’s redemption.
We can find the operation of this great sacrifice beginning in the Garden of Eden when God killed a lamb or goat in order to cover the nakedness (type of sin) of Adam and Eve with skins. Then it was in operation when Abel sacrificed a substitute lamb.
So the Passover is the first of these events picturing to God’s children His great plan.
Egypt was at the height of its Empire in the world during Israel’s enslavement. God pictures Egypt as a type of sin.
Modern Israel lives in Babylon and soon is to be delivered after God pours out His plagues upon Babylon; this was the same way that God delivered ancient Israel from Egypt. And, as Rome has changed times and seasons and days, professing Christians have been deceived and have lost sight of the true time of God’s days. They have lost sight of the true worship of God, the very same way the ancient House of Israel did while in slavery in Egypt.
For decades Israel had been in severe bondage, forced to work with taskmasters over them. They (Israel) did not have a Bible, there wasn’t any; there was no written Word of God. They were not permitted to worship God as He had ordained.
They had to work seven days a week, they had lost sight of the Sabbath day, that is why God had to reveal it to them in Exodus 16, just as Rome had changed times and seasons, so did Egypt. After delivering Israel from bondage, God had to straighten them out as to time:
“This month shall be unto you the beginning of months; It shall be the first month of the year to you” (Ex. 12:2). Next God gave Moses instruction to give to the House of Israel about the killing of a lamb, you can read about that in Exodus 12:3-11.
Now if the professing Christians are right, that the death of Jesus Christ finished the plan of redemption, then why did He give Israel the rest of these Holy Days, beginning with the Days of Unleavened Bread?
“Seven days shall you eat unleavened bread” (Ex. 12:15). “These are the feasts of the Lord, even holy convocations (commanded assemblies) which you shall proclaim in their seasons Lev. 23:4.” And on the 15th day of the same month is the feast of unleavened bread” (v. 6).
But if the plan of salvation was finished on the cross as the Protestant world claims, why these seven Holy Days, and remember that the days of unleavened bread were given while Israel was still in bondage, they had not left Egypt yet.
Why did God ordain these feast days; what was His purpose? “Remember this day in which you came out from Egypt, out of the house of bondage; for by strength of hand the Lord brought you out from this place; there shall no leavened bread be eaten” (Ex. 13:3).
“Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread, no leaven shall be seen in all thy quarters” (vs. 6-7). “And it shall be a sign unto you upon thine hand for a memorial between thine eyes that the LORD’S LAW may be in thy mouth; for with a strong hand hath the Lord brought thee out of Egypt. Thou shalt therefore keep this ordinance (regulation) in his season from year to year.
For those who may be reading this for the first time, do you grasp the wonderful meaning? Do you see God’s purpose? The Passover pictures the death of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins that are past. To accept His shed blood does not forgive sins we shall commit, it does not give us license to continue in sin. When we accept it, our sins are forgiven only up to that time, past sins.
If we continued to live in sin, and Christ’s death makes things right, why didn’t God just stop with the Passover? You and I are still flesh and blood, we are subject to temptations. John tells us, that as true Christians, we do sin. “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us” (I John 1:8). But what is truth? “Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and thy law is the truth” (Ps. 119:142). The same law that Moses spoke about in Ex. 13:9).
Sin has held us in its clutch, we have been slaves to sin, and we are powerless to deliver ourselves from it. Just like the ancient House of Israel could not deliver themselves from their bondage, and neither can we.
Question: To what extent shall we put away sin, completely? Leaven is a type of sin, leaven puffs up and so does sin, and just as the number seven is God’s number symbolizing completeness you and I are to follow Passover with the seven days of unleavened bread. The picture, the meaning, the symbolism is not complete with Passover alone.
The Passover pictures the acceptance of Jesus’ shed blood for the remission of past sins; it pictures the death of Jesus Christ. Are we now going to leave Jesus hanging on the cross? No, the days of unleavened bread picture to us the complete putting away of sin, keeping the Ten Commandments of God.
The days of unleavened bread picture the life and work of the risen Jesus Christ. Who ascended to the throne of God where He is actively at work on our behalf as our High Priest, cleansing us of sin, delivering us completely from its power?
What does it mean to observe the Passover alone, and then fail to observe the seven days of unleavened bread? It means that we accept Jesus Christ’s shed blood but we can continue to live in sin. And that is exactly what modern Christianity says, the law was done away, we are under grace, meaning license to continue to live in sin.
The days of unleavened bread picture the keeping of the Ten Commandments which is another way of putting away of sin. Just as Rome followers have the mark of the beast in their right hand and forehead.
God’s Church is to have these feast days, the first of which is a memorial picturing deliverance from sin in our right hand and forehead. And since the forehead is the seat of the intellect and symbolizes acceptance, and the right hand symbolizes work, we have this sign of God that we accept the truth of these Holy Days.
Not only is the weekly Sabbath a sign, so are the annual Sabbaths a sign.
Now here is a perfect picture of the days of unleavened bread. The children of Israel started out of Egypt, the night of the 15th, just as we must on our own accord start out of sin as soon as we accept the blood of Jesus Christ. They started out on their own power, and we must make the start of ourselves.
Israel didn’t get very far before Pharaoh pursued after them. Now Egypt is a type of sin, then Pharaoh must picture Satan and his armies are Satan’s demons.
While Israel was in Egypt they were Pharaoh’s slaves, helpless and powerless under his taskmaster just as a sinner is in the power of Satan the Devil.
When Israel took the blood of the lamb, God acted, and as a result of God’s act of the plague of the firstborn, Pharaoh released Israel. When we accept Jesus’ shed blood, God acts, and the devil must release us.
“On the morrow after the Passover the children of Israel went out with an (boldness) high hand in the sight of all the Egyptians” (Num. 33:3). Probably in great exultation over their release from bondage. This is the same thing that happens to newborn Christians, they start out this Christian life up in the clouds of happiness and joy, but something happens along the way.
“And I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, that he shall follow after them: and I will be honoured upon Pharaoh, and upon all his host; that the Egyptians may know that I am the Lord, and they did so” (Ex. 14:4). Pharaoh (a type of Satan the Devil) immediately began to pursue after them with soldiers and 600 chariots.
Once you have received God’s Holy Spirit, Satan and his demons pursue after a newborn child of God. What happens is a newborn child finds he is down in the depths of discouragement and frustration and is tempted to give up and quit.
What happened to Israel when Pharaoh came after them? “And when Pharaoh drew nigh, the children of Israel lifted up their eyes, and, behold the Egyptians marched after them; and they were sore (very) afraid; and the children of Israel cried out unto the Lord” (Ex. 14:10). What happened to the high hand, fear came over them, they began to grumble and complain. They saw it as impossible for them to get away from Pharaoh and his army. Pharaoh’s army was to powerful for them, and they were helpless. What did God tell them through Moses?
“Fear ye not, standstill, and see the salvation of the Lord, for the Egyptians ye shall see them again no more forever. The Eternal shall fight for you” (Ex. 14:13). The one thing that we must keep in mind, these things were written for our example. God is telling us to stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, He shall fight for us.
You and I can’t conquer Satan, we can’t even see him, Satan is invisible and your eyes can’t see things that are invisible, but God can and did. It is the risen Jesus Christ who will cleanse us, sanctify us, and deliver us. Jesus said that He would never leave us or forsake us.
You and I can’t keep God’s Commandments in our own power and strength, but Jesus Christ in us can keep them. We must rely on Him in faith.
Notice Ex. 14:19 “And the angel of God, which went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them; and the pillar of the cloud went from before their face, and stood behind them.” This angel was getting between them and their army, protecting them.
“And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea upon dry ground: and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand and on their left” (v. 22). In Isa. 55:1 and John 7:37-39, the waters are a symbol of the Holy Spirit. The living waters of God are a wall to us, on our right and left hand guiding us in the true path, making the path, protecting us in it.
What happened when Pharaoh and his army attempted to follow Israel in this divinely created path? These same waters completely covered them, Israel saw them no more. The Holy Spirit removes and covers our sins.
Why do we need to keep God’s days of unleavened bread, because leaven is a type of sin, and sin weakens and stunts one’s spiritual growth?
Sin deforms and if we allow ourselves to sin; to become indifferent to God’s commands; then we contribute to a spiritual deformity. And no spiritual deformed Christian will enter the kingdom of God.
These days of unleavened bread are a constant reminder that sin must be torn out of our mind, root and branch. Sin, if not repented of, makes one calloused, brings on apathy, not concerning for the well fare of others.
The prophet Ezekiel wrote of our age, he prophesied about a time of future national depravity and captivity. “Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof” (Ezk. 9:3-6).
You and I live right in the midst all these abominations, do we sigh and cry for what is taking place in our nation, or have they rubbed off on us and we simply don’t pay that much attention to them?
The days of unleavened bread are not just seven physical days that we observe, but an entire life time of unleavened bread. We are to love in God’s love, not the so called human love or the love of this world, which is a love that grows inward to the self.
The true Christian’s hope of glory, the hope of attaining membership in God’s glorious Family, is in Jesus Christ, our Saviour, Christ living in us through the Holy Spirit. Remember, Jesus is not the Author or Beginner of our Salvation, but He is also its Finisher.
It is Christ, the One who completes our salvation. But if we allow sin to continue to live in our lives, it will cause us to be indifferent, and it will become an evil cancer, and will kill us if we allow it to take root in our hearts.
We, as God’s people, should never lose sight of these feast days; we must keep them firmly in our minds the vital lessons taught by this annual festival. God wants His spiritual begotten children to live righteously, keeping His perfect spiritual law, (the Ten Commandments) forsaking the spiritual leaven of sin.