Read Together: When God delivered ancient Israel from Egypt, they left in a hurry. They left so quickly that they were unable to let their dough rise, so their bread was unleavened. God told Israel they were to remember the day that He brought them out of Egypt by observing the Feast of Unleavened Bread for seven days. The first and last days of the feast were to be Holy Days or annual Sabbaths. As they prepared for these days they were to remove all the leavening from their homes. God commanded the Israelites to do this and instruct their children to pass on this command to the next generation. But we understand that the command applies to us as members of the church of God also. You have probably helped your parents clean the leavening from your home before the Days of Unleavened Bread each year. It can take a lot of time and hard work! But, why is it important? Here’s the answer.
Remember, God brought ancient Israel out of slavery in Egypt. For the Israelites, Egypt represented the years of slavery they had endured. Today, God calls each member of His church and frees them from slavery also. But our slavery is not to the kingdom of Egypt. Our slavery is to sin. Even though we don’t want to, we sometimes break God’s law out of rebelliousness and selfishness. That is like being a slave of sin. For us, God uses leaven to represent our slavery. What is leaven? Leaven is the yeast that is added to bread to make it rise, which makes it more enjoyable to eat. Without that leaven, bread is hard and flat. Just like the yeast that makes bread rise, sin causes us to grow in pride, vanity and selfishness. And as we remove leavening or any bread that has been made with leavening from our homes, we are practicing an exercise that reminds us of removing sin from our life!
Read Together: Exodus 12:15–17, 33–34, 39; 13:3–10; Leviticus 23:6–8; John 6:44; Matthew 16:6; 1 Corinthians 13:4; 5:6–8; Romans 6:12–14
- Help your child name some leavened products that you are to throw out and avoid during the Days of Unleavened Bread.
- Discuss with your child what sin is and have them read 1 John 3:4 (KJV). Help your child recognize that just as we are to carefully stay away from leavening during the Days of Unleavened Bread, we are to be especially diligent to keep sin out of our lives.
- Try to think of a humorous event that happened to your family during the Days of Unleavened Bread. What was the oddest place that you found leavening? Were you ever in a situation where you temporarily forgot it was the Days of Unleavened Bread? What do you do when these things happen? Help your child to understand that when we repent of sin, God is quick to forgive us. This is how we remain unleavened.
1 Corinthians 5:7 “Therefore purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, since you truly are unleavened. For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us.”