The Process of Becoming Spiritually Unleavened

Day 1 UB—2003)

Fred R. Coulter—April 17, 2003

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Here we are with the Feast days, and we always begin in Lev. 23. And we begin there because all the Feast days of God are listed in this one particular place. We've already covered it down to the Passover.

Leviticus 23:6: "on the fifteenth day of the same month is the Feast of Unleavened Bread to the LORD. You must eat unleavened bread seven days. On the first day you shall have a Holy convocation. You shall not do any servile work therein" (vs 6-7). That is today!

  • this day has great meaning for us
  • this day has tremendous understanding for us when we come to realize it

Verse 8: "But you shall offer a fire offering to the LORD…"

Then it says in the seventh day you shall have a Holy convocation, and so forth. So, in making an offering unto the Lord we always take up an offering, and as I had to cover so many things this past year concerning tithes and offerings, I will just leave it to you. Your relationship with God, your giving to God and taking up an offering for the first Holy Day is a very important thing. Just remember this that whatever you do physically or spiritually, understand that God is offering you eternal life. For that there is no value that you can put on it. And always remember that God loves a cheerful giver, and God loves those who love Him. So, at this time we'll just take a pause and we will take up the offering.

(pause for offering)

Now all the Feast days in our relationship with God goes clear back to Abraham, as we have seen for the Passover, as we have seen for the Night To Be Remembered. And in both cases, whether physically or whether spiritually, we are the children of Abraham. Now for the New Testament we have a direct command from the Apostle Paul to keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and the reason why. Of course, these are all Scriptures that we cover in season. We are to cover the things that we know, some of the things we don't know, and we need to learn all of these things over again every year.

With the incident that was put forth in the Church because they had someone there that was committing fornication with his mother-in-law, or his step-mother, either one. They didn't handle the matter properly according to the laws of God. As a matter of fact they were glorying in it. In other words, almost like the grace of God is so good that God could overlook this. Well, Paul had to correct them.

1-Corinthians 5:6: "Your glorying is not good…." There can be many kinds of glorying. There can be carnal glorying, there can be pride, vanity. There can be spiritual pride, spiritual vanity. Glorying and things that please the flesh rather than please God, and this is what they were doing. Now here is a tremendous key. The whole lesson of the Feast of Unleavened Bread.

"…Don't you know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump?" This is what we are dealing with!

Leaven during the days of unleavened bread is a type of sin. It leavens, puffs up, creates and multiplies sin. It starts out with just a little. You can take unleavened bread and you put in a little leaven in it and you let it sit, then it rises. So likewise, in life when sin is allowed to grow, to expand, to increase it leavens the whole lump. We are to be unleavened in Christ, and that's the reason why we keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread. That's the reason why we put leaven out of our homes. That's the reason that we eat the unleavened bread all during the seven days of Unleavened Bread, because God said so. There's a lesson. There's something that's very important in it, which is that you learn as you obey. You understand as you continue to obey every year. As you do:

  • you grow in grace and knowledge
  • you grow in understanding
  • you grow in the things concerning the ways of God even more

The reverse is true!

When people begin not keeping the Passover and the Feasts of God, God takes away knowledge. He takes it from them. We've seen this happen, too. We need to understand one of the most important things, and one of the most important commands concerning the Feast of Unleavened Bread in the New Testament is found right here in 1-Cor. 5. We also need to understand that the Church at Corinth was mainly a Gentile church. Paul is not admonishing Jews to keep their Feast. He is admonishing and commanding Gentiles, who never kept it before, to keep it, and he explains the reason why.

Verse 7: "Therefore, purge out the old leaven, so that you may become a new lump, even as you are unleavened…." There are two ways you are unleavened:

  • the physical leaven out of your homes
  • the spiritual leaven out of your lives because of Christ

Here is the whole basis of everything. This starts the whole run of God's Holy Days and Feast Days are based right in the next part of this verse:

"…For Christ our Passover was sacrificed for us…. [that's in the past tense] … For this reason, let us keep the Feast…" (v 7-8). So, you have the Passover that starts it, and everything concerning the Passover, the sacrifice of Christ, and all of that. {note sermon series: Preparation for Passover}

"…not with old leaven… [we're not to do it with our old ways, our old attitudes, our old sins] …nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness…" (v 8).

We have an inner fight, and an inner battle that we are going to concentrate on today. How is it that God looks at us? How is it that we are unleavened? We are to change from having malice and wickedness—which is sin, and these are attitudes against God—to having the unleavened attitude of Christ.

"…but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and Truth" (v 8).

Truth is the Word of God. Jesus said of God's Word, 'Your Word is Truth. All Your commandments are true, all Your statutes are true, all Your commandments are righteousness' (Psa. 119). But we are also going to see that there has to be an inner sincerity and truth that comes from the power of God's Holy Spirit, which is the Spirit of Truth and leads us in how we need to live.

John 6 tells us the whole story about eating Christ. What God wants in our life is that we come to a point in our lives that we:

  • know God
  • we know Christ
  • we understand the Word of God

When we continually come to Him we are going to have our hunger and our thirst spiritually always satisfied!

John 6:35: "Jesus said to them, 'I AM the Bread of Life…"

As we covered in our series: Passover Preparation, Christ is 'the Way, the Truth and the Life.'

"…the one who comes to Me shall never hunger; and the one who believes in Me shall never thirst at any time" (v 35). In believing in Christ you are going to continually be receiving the Holy Spirit. We need to understand, this is the way that God has operated continuously from the time of the beginning of the New Testament Church. All of those who belong to Christ, and all of those who are truly converted understand this.

Now let's see the meaning, because we start out with the Passover, and the reason we keep the Days of Unleavened Bread is because Christ was crucified for us: our sacrifice. Let's see how important this is, and why, when we do this, everything then opens up, or unfolds, and God with His Spirit will lead us and we gain knowledge, understanding and grace.

Verse 53: "Therefore, Jesus said to them, 'Truly, truly I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, you do not have life in yourselves.'" This is profound to understand. It's telling us very simply that if you do not keep the Passover in the proper way and time, with the proper emblems, and so forth, you do not have eternal life. You cannot get eternal life from something that is dead. You get eternal life from God's Spirit. The covenant that Christ made with us is a covenant unto eternal life through His blood, through His body.

Verse 55: "For My flesh is truly food, and My blood is truly drink. The one who eats My flesh and drinks My blood is dwelling in Me, and I in him" (vs 55-56).

That is the whole true key of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. The way you are unleavened in Christ is Christ in you. And as Paul said, the hope of glory. Now, with Christ in us, and with the Holy Spirit to lead us, what do we have?

Verse 57—here is the key to the whole thing: "As the living Father has sent Me, and I live by the Father…" That is when He was living in the flesh, He was living by the Father. He didn't speak His own words, He didn't give His own commandments. Everything He did He said, 'Of My own will, of My own self I can do nothing.' He was living by the Father!

Verse 57: "As the living Father has sent Me, and I live by the Father; so also the one who eats Me… [who eats My flesh, drinks My blood, symbolized by the Passover] … shall live by Me." That's why we start out with the Passover, showing that we live by Christ!

Now then we are to progress, because that is the start. Now then, we have something we need to do. There is something we need to understand as the children. As the spiritual children of Abraham we are under obligation to do something most profound. We will see then how God deals with us, and how He looks at us, and what He expects us to do.

Now let's pick it up here in Galatians 3:26: "Because you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ did put on Christ" (vs 26-27)—meaning to be clothed, 'enduo' in the Greek.

It's almost like, you wouldn't want to say encasing, but you are enrobed or clothed. It talks about the white linen, the clean and white linen is the righteousness of the saints, and the righteousness of the saints is what we need to understand that we need to grow and develop in

  • we are to put on Christ
  • we are to grow in Christ

Now let's review just a few things here in the book of Romans and let's see how God deals with us. Let's see how God helps us. Let's see God's part of the bargain, because you see a covenant is not a one-sided thing. It is a two-sided thing. That's why Jesus said, 'If you love Me, keep My commandments.' There are things we need to do!

In Rom. 1 Paul shows the world the way that it is. We are seeing it develop just exactly in everything that Romans 1 talks about, clear to the degeneration of the society. Then he also talks about the judgmentalness of human beings, especially for those who think that they are good, that they judge and they condemn. And he especially gets after the Jews and tells them that even their circumcision in the flesh, if they don't keep the commandments of God, is counted as uncircumcision. So, just the fleshly things that people do, the good things that sincere good people in the world do, even claiming God, does not mean that they are converted. Then Paul gives a very profound lesson.

Here is a profound lesson, and this is all a part of why we keep the Passover and all the Feasts of God.

Romans 2:28: "For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, neither is that circumcision which is external in the flesh; rather, he is a Jew who is one inwardly, and circumcision is of the heart, in the spirit and not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God" (vs 28-29).

There has to be a change of heart called circumcision of the heart. It's also referred to in Col. 2 as the circumcision made without hands, and putting off the body of sin. That's what Christ does for us. Lest there be any doubt about what Paul meant, we have the first part of chapter 3. He says all have sinned and come short of the glory of God, both Jews and Gentiles.

Let's understand something on how we are unleavened in Christ, and how that takes place, and what happens. And how that we need to go back and understand this every year, lest we get lifted up in spiritual pride and think that we are so far above everybody else. I heard one famous man who was a minister say, 'I have been faithful so long Satan has no more interest in me.' Well, you know what happened. Satan did his dirty work. He had a great deal to repent of, because it says right here:

Romans 3:19: "Now then, we know that whatever the Law says, it speaks to those who are under the Law…" Of course, everybody is under the Law. They are subject to the Law whether they know the Law or not.

"…so that every mouth may be stopped…" (v 19). Regardless of who they are:

  • no man's going to talk back to God
  • no man is going to judge God
  • no man is going to command God
  • no man is going to tell God what to do

"…may become guilty before God. Therefore, by works of law there shall no flesh be justified before Him…"  (vs 19-20).

We're going to talk a little bit about justification today, and that is how you are made right with God. And you cannot have a relationship with God the Father and Jesus Christ until you have been made right, until you have been justified, until you have had your sins put away from you. We will see later on that that is also a continuous ongoing project and that's why we have the Feasts of God and the Days of Unleavened Bread that we continually keep. So you're not going to be justified. There is no work that any man can do anywhere under the sun that has been given that will forgive sin!

"…for through the Law is the knowledge of sin…. [after we have the knowledge of sin]: …But now the righteousness of God that is separate from law…" (vs 20-21) The word without here in the King James is a very unfortunate translation because it gives you the impression 'the absence of' or that you no longer need it.

This is where the Protestants and the Catholics have gone off the deep end, in fact fallen over the cliff of self-destruction by saying that you don't need the laws and commandments of God.

"…has been revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets… [they witnessed to the coming justification that we have] …even the righteousness of God that is through the faith of Jesus Christ…"  (vs 21-22). That's a profound righteousness!

It is a righteousness that is given to us by grace and is imputed to us. It is the gift of righteousness, as we will see. Now there is no greater thing that you can possibly have in this lifetime than being put in right standing with God. That's what this word righteousness means. It doesn't mean just commandment keeping alone, because this is the righteousness of God, which is by faith of Jesus Christ. And that means it come through Christ's own faith that is imparted to you.

"…toward all and upon all those who believe; for there is no difference. For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; but are being justified freely…" (vs 22-24).

No cost, freely, gratuitously. Because God so loved the world He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him may have everlasting life and not perish. God is the only One Who can do that.

"…being justified freely by His grace…" We're going to see a little later on that you've been saved by grace. It cannot be by works.

"…through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus; Whom God has openly manifested to be a propitiation…" (vs 24-25).

We're going to see a little bit later on that even though we've been baptized, and even though we have received the Holy Spirit of God, and even though that we have been walking and living in God's ways for a long, long time, many of us, we still have sin to overcome. So, it is still by grace. We live by grace, we're saved by grace, we understand the Word of God by grace. In all of that the greatest grace of God is the gift of His Son Jesus Christ.

Verse 25: "Whom God has openly manifested to be a propitiation… [a continual atoning mercy seat for us] … through faith in His blood, in order to demonstrate His righteousness, in respect to the remission of sins that are past"—covered them!

Let's understand something here. The Catholics sell indulgences, which are to pay in advance for sins that you will do in the future, which then is a form of absurd lawlessness because you see the truth is this: All sin is passed sin! What do I mean by that? Even though you know—because you have the law of sin and death in you—that probably tomorrow you're going to do something that will be a sin against God, but you don't know what it is, and you haven't done it, yet. Therefore there's no such thing as a future sin. All sins are past sin! Sin is the transgression of the Law! When you have transgressed the Law, in the instant that you have done it, it is a past sin. Those are the sins that God forgives. You're not going to say, 'God, I'm going to kill my neighbor, and I ask Your forgiveness ahead of time.' That won't happen! Those kinds of sin are never forgiven. Now then, this declares God's righteousness that God would do this freely.

Verse 26: "through the forbearance of God; yes, to publicly declare His righteousness in the present time, that He might be just… [God is always right] …and the One Who justifies the one who is of the faith of Jesus."

  • you have to believe that Christ died for your sins
  • you have to believe to the point that you obey
  • you have to live as He lived

That's what Paul was telling us!

Verse 27: "Therefore, where is boasting?…." You can't say that we're the chosen people! Is there any boasting that we can say other than boast in Christ?

"…It is excluded. By what law?" No, it's not done by law. "…Of works? Nay: but by the law of faith." Or that is, the operation of faith. "Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without [separate from works of law] the deeds of the law" (vs. 26-28). And that's the way that it should read. You can't go over to God and say, "I've been good, therefore You give me eternal life." No. Eternal life comes by belief, by repentance, by forgiveness, by grace, by God's gift. And we'll expound that a little bit more.

"…It is excluded. Through what law?…. [that was a big problem back in Paul's day] …The law of works? By no means! Rather, it is through a law of faith" (v 27). God is going to do it because there's no difference between Jew and Gentile before God!

Verse 31: "Are we, then, abolishing the Law through faith? MAY IT NEVER BE! Rather, we are establishing the Law." How do we establish the law?

  • by faith because we believe it
  • through the Holy Spirit having it written in our heart and our mind

That's how you establish law!

Now then, he gives the whole example of Abraham and how he believed that it was imputed to him for righteousness, because the greatest thing that a human being can really do is believe and love God. That puts you in right standing with God! If you believe God:

  • you're going to love God
  • you're going to obey God
  • you're going to follow His way

Therefore, God puts you in right standing with Him, meaning you are justified. He offers to all of us continuously the propitiation of justification every day through Jesus Christ.

Paul begins explaining why God did this (Rom. 5), how we stand before God and how we live before God. He goes through and he explains to us some of the things that we will endure as human beings as we are growing and changing and overcoming.

Romans 5:1: "Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God…" We are no longer hostile toward Him! It says of the carnal mind: the carnal mind is enmity against God, is not subject to the Law of God, and neither indeed can be. The word enmity also means enemy. So, in having peace with God we're subject to the Law of God. We love God:

  • we're not fighting God
  • we're not hostile to God
  • God is not hostile to us
  • God loves us
  • God has called us
  • God has given us His Spirit
  • God has justified us

"…we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through Whom we also have access by faith into this grace…" (vs 1-2). This grace is like a great umbrella that gives us His love, that gives us His faith, that gives us the belief, that gives us the self-control, that gives us all the fruits of the Holy Spirit by grace. And we stand in it and we

"…in which we stand, and we ourselves boast in the hope of the glory of God…. [regardless of our circumstances we always have hope in God and we glory in that] …And not only this, but we also boast in tribulations …" (vs 1-3).

When you come to the mature understanding… I'm sure the Apostle Paul could do this more than anyone else because of what he did in persecuting the church. And he looked upon the tribulations coming upon, him as Christ said, as when he was called, payback time for Paul. So Paul rejoiced in the tribulation. But what we need to understand is this, instead of saying, 'Uh-oh, another trial.' We need to say:

  • God, I know this is a trial
  • help me to know and understand the purpose of this
  • help me to learn in it, and help me to grow in it

I don't know if we're ever going to come to the point that we glory in it. But at least when it's all over and done with and we look back with perfect 20/20 spiritual hindsight and really see the purpose of it, then we can rejoice in what God has done, because all things work together for good for those who love God and are called according to His purpose, you see.

"…realizing that tribulation brings forth endurance" (v 3). Remember what Christ said of endurance? The one who endures to the end shall be saved! It's not how you start, but how you finish! You have to endure to the end!

Verse 4: "And endurance brings forth character… [experience, which brings character] … and character brings forth hope." Then you see and understand the end result of all that God is doing, and that you are going to be in the Kingdom of God, that you are going to be a spirit Being. That is the hope that is held out for us.

Verse 5: "And the hope of God never makes us ashamed because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, which has been given to us." You see the whole process!

I want to bring out today on this first Day of Unleavened Bread is the whole process of becoming spiritually unleavened, and how God deals with us:

  • with His love
  • with His grace
  • with His hope

Because God did this without asking us!

Verse 6: "For even when we were without strength, at the appointed time… [at the set time that God had determined] …Christ died for the ungodly."

He didn't die for the good people of the world. He "…died for the ungodly." We all have to understand that we are by nature ungodly. So, if God can take this and bring about repentance and conversion with His Holy Spirit—mold and develop the character and the mind of Christ in you—that is a tremendous thing, and that is a tremendous love that God has given us.

Verse 7: "For rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, although perhaps someone might have the courage even to die for a good man. But God commends His own love to us because, when we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more, therefore…" (vs 7-9).

You can't just come to the point and say, 'I believe in Christ, I believe He died for us.' There is much more; that is just the start. If you always stay on the starting line you never get to the finishing line. No! You have to endure to the end.

Verse 9: "Much more, therefore, having been justified now by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him…. [through His life] …For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His own Son…"

That's a fantastic thing to understand. See, that's why God says, 'Love your enemies. Do good to those that hate you. Pray for those that despitefully use you and persecute you.' That's the hardest thing to do! But it is a Godly thing to do because that's what Christ did. We need to understand that.

"…much more then, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only this, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by Whom we have now received the reconciliation" (vs 10-11).

Now then he begins to explain something very profound. He talks about our human nature. This is the thing that we need to deal with, with God's Spirit! This is what we need to overcome. We need to understand how we got the human nature, and how it is that it came about, and how great it is that what God is doing for us.

Verse 12 says it all: "Therefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and by means of sin came death; and in this way death passed into all mankind…"—because every human being has a nature of death, they are imperfect!

  • they are imperfect in as much as that they are in the flesh
  • they are imperfect because they have a nature of death

           
With a nature of death, you cannot help but sin because that's a part of your nature! Because of the nature of death, "…and it is for this reason that all have sinned" (v 12). . God put it there and He alone can take care of it!

Paul goes on to show that this came because of the sin of Adam. A lot of people like to blame Eve, especially men, but Eve wasn't the one who did it all. She had her part, but it says here by one man, sin entered into the world. Even those who, after the way of Adam, still died because they sinned, though they didn't sin after the same similitude of Adam's sin.

Let's understand what the Feast of Unleavened Bread is all about. It's more than just eating unleavened bread. It's more than putting leaven out of your homes. It's more than just understanding that you have a sinful nature. You have to understand what God has done, and what He is doing, and how you do stand before Christ, as we saw on the Passover, clean through the words which He has spoken. And you stand before God, now justified, and how does God look at you. He makes a comparison:

Verse 17: "For if by the offense of the one man… [Adam's sin] …death reigned by the one… [death came to everyone] …how much more shall those who receive the abundance of grace… [that's what you have] …and the gift of righteousness…"—the righteousness of Christ imputed to you! This is the righteousness of the Spirit:

  • having God's Spirit in you
  • having your sins forgiven
  • giving you the power to overcome sin

We'll see what God has required of you to have this gift of righteousness. With this gift of righteousness and being put in right standing with God, God views you through Christ! Now think on that! Many times you get very discouraged because you're fighting and overcoming sin, but you have this gift of righteousness.

"…reign in life… [unto eternal life] …by One Jesus Christ" (v 17).

Paul concludes the whole matter, v 21: "So that even as sin has reigned unto death, so also might the grace of God reign… [grace will be the rule] …through righteousness unto eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." So the Truth of Unleavened Bread is

  • being unleavened in Christ
  • grace reigns in your life because you are in right standing with God

this grace is to inspire you to

  • love God
  • serve God
  • keep His commandments
  • be at-one with God in a continuous spiritual union through the Holy Spirit

(go to the next track)

Let's understand a little bit more of what it meant in v 8: "…when we were still sinners, Christ died for us."

Let's understand more about the grace of God and what it is that we are to do, because we have received this grace and this gift of righteousness.

  • God deals with us as with children
  • God deals with us because we have His Spirit
  • God deals with us with His grace

Sometimes some of the trials we go through are so that we can really trust in God, believe in God and realize that through grace we are delivered from these things, that through grace we are going to be saved.

Ephesians 2:1 (KJV): "And you hath He quickened…"—meaning you've been given the Holy Spirit of God, you have passed from death to life. Your nature is death because death passed into all human beings. We're also going to see that also the nature of sin passed into all human beings.

Verse 1 (FV): "Now, you were dead in trespasses and sins… [living in sin is death; the wages of sin is death] …in which you walked in times past according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air…" Satan is there working!

We're going to see on the last Day of Unleavened Bread how that Satan is there to come after us because he knows that you are going to receive eternal life, and he doesn't want you to receive it. That's why we need to trust in God.

"…the spirit that is now working within the children of disobedience… [it's very interesting that Satan has that ability to work in people] …among whom also we all… [everyone of us] …once had our conduct in the lusts of our flesh, doing the things willed by the flesh and by the mind, and were by nature the children of wrath, even as the rest of the world" (vs 2-3)—just doing what is natural!

It feels good, sounds good, and without the conviction of God's Spirit, and without the conviction and knowledge of God's law you have no understanding of sin. You are dead. But God intervenes in your life. God calls you. God chooses you. God, through His grace, reaches down and calls you out of sin and takes you out of sin through Christ, just as surely as God took the children of Israel out of Egypt.

Verse 4: "But God, Who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, has made us alive together with Christ. (For you have been saved by grace.)" (vs 4-5).

We know that salvation is a three-step process. You have been saved from your sins and Satan the devil, now. As long as you are standing in the Gospel and living by the Word of God, you are being saved. And when Christ returns at the resurrection, you shall be saved. Just like it says, 'the one who endures to the end shall be saved.'

Verse 8—Paul repeats it again: "For by grace you have been saved through faith…" You believe God!

You can understand and take Him at His word that what He says is true; and He will perform, and He will accomplish.

"…and this especially is not of your own selves… [neither the salvation nor the faith] …it is the gift of God… [God's gifts come through His grace] …not of works, so that no one may boast" (vs 8-9). No one's going to go up to God and say, 'O God, I'm so glad You discovered me. I was such a good person. You know, there's no way, God, that You could possibly have passed over giving me eternal life.'

Not even Job could do that! Not of works; there are works that we are to do, but those do not bring salvation. Those keep us in right standing with God!

Verse 10: "For we are His workmanship…" God wants to do something in you, and through you, and to you. We are His workmanship.

Remember what God said of Israel, back there in the book of Jeremiah? He was likened to a potter. And a potter can do with the clay what he desires. And he has to keep it at the right temperature, the right moisture, the right whatever it is that he is using the clay for and what he is going to make. God is the potter and we are the clay, and we don't ask God, 'What are you making? What are you doing?' God tells us that we're His workmanship:

 "…being created… [salvation is creation] …in Christ Jesus…" (v 10)—so that you then become a new man, a new woman, a new person in Christ, as it were. You've already been created in the flesh, now this is the spiritual creation.

"…unto the good works…" (v 10). Let's see:

  • how we are created in Christ
  • what we are to do
  • how we are to live
  • how we are to conduct our lives

1-John 2:5: "On the other hand, if anyone is keeping His Word, truly in this one the love of God is being perfected.…" That's the whole purpose of Unleavened Bread, that you be perfect in Christ, perfected!

"…By this means we know that we are in Him…. [if you're going through this process, you know that you are in Him] …Anyone who claims to dwell in Him is obligating himself also to walk even as He Himself walked" (vs 5-6).

That is the workmanship and being created in Christ Jesus that Paul is talking about in:

Ephesians 2:10: "…unto the good works that God ordained beforehand in order that we might walk in them." That's quite a thing! God has ordained or commanded that we walk in these good works. Now then this presents a problem.

Let's understand that God has done this magnificent thing in manifesting Himself in the flesh in the person of Jesus Christ, and offered Himself and laid down His life for us, as a perfect sacrifice for our sins, before we even knew God. But yea, this was done for us almost 2,000 years ago.

Romans 6 because we have something that we need to do of an equivalent nature that God did. Because in order to fulfill His word and His promise to Abraham, God came in the flesh and died. And everything that has to do with the death of Jesus Christ has to do with our relationship with God because He was raised from the dead. Because God has done this, all Protestants: Hello! Hear this! Read this! Understand this!

Romans 6:1: "What then shall we say? Shall we continue in sin… [sin is the transgression of the Law: basic, fundamental] … so that grace may abound? MAY IT NEVER BE!…." (vs 1-2)—with the connotation of don't even let this thought enter into your mind!

Verse 2: "MAY IT NEVER BE! We who died to sin, how shall we live any longer therein?"—because God required something of you as profound as what He did for us.

But He did it in a more gentle way through the operation of baptism. But let's notice this here. So, Paul reminds them, and this is all part of the teaching of the Feast of Unleavened Bread.

Verse 3: "Or are you ignorant that we, as many as were baptized into Christ Jesus, were baptized into His death? Therefore, we were buried with Him through the baptism into the death…" (vs 3-4). We are actually conjoined to His death!

In order to have Christ in you, you must conform yourself to the death of Christ by the operation of baptism, and that is what we renew every year at the Passover.

"…so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, in the same way, we also should walk in newness of life" (v 4).

We're not to continue in sin, but in newness of life! What is that newness of life?

  • loving God
  • keeping His commandments
  • doing those things that are pleasing in His sight
  • studying
  • praying
  • growing
  • overcoming
  • having your mind changed
  • being recreated from within after the image of Christ

Verse 5: "For if we have been conjoined together in the likeness of His death, so also shall we be in the likeness of His resurrection. Knowing this, that our old man was co-crucified with Him in order that the body of sin might be destroyed…" (vs 5-6)—because we're going to see that it is a process! This process is continuous and ongoing throughout our lives.

"…so that we might no longer be enslaved to sin" (v 6). That's why He requires of this. Now when we're baptized it is a symbolic death, and we are pledging to God, as God pledged to us through His death, that we will live His way. And God says, in giving the Holy Spirit, that 'I will give you strength, I will give you help, I will impute righteousness to you that you are in right standing with Me, as a father with a son.' Furthermore, as we have been studying in the book of Hebrews, you have direct access to God the Father in heaven above. And with that would you want to sin? Of course not! But do you have a struggle with sin? Yes, we all do. And we will all have a struggle with sin until we expire in the flesh.

Verse 8: "Now, if we died together with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him." That's the whole point of it!

Now let's come down here and see what we are to do. He says it again. Let's understand how we are to live our lives. And every year at the Feast of Unleavened Bread, beginning with the Passover and Unleavened Bread, we are to rededicate our lives to God. We are to understand that yes, we have fallen short.

  • yes, we need God's grace
  • yes, we need the help of God
  • yes, we need the Spirit of God
  • yes, we need the laws and commandments of God
  • yes, we need the Word of God

Verse 11: "In the same way also, you should indeed reckon yourselves to be dead to sin…" You don't live to sin any longer; you're dead to sin.

"…but alive to God… [the reason you are living is because of God] … through Christ Jesus our Lord. Therefore, do not let sin rule in your mortal body…" (vs 11-12). Don't let it control you! Remember, a little leaven leavens the whole lump!

  • don't let it control you
  • don't let it rule you
  • don't let it drive you
  • don't let it pull you
  • don't let it reign

"…by obeying it in the lusts thereof" (v 12). That's why we have the mental battles and things that are going on, which we will see what we are to do. And that's where the true struggle is.

Verse 12: "Therefore, do not let sin rule in your mortal body by obeying it in the lusts thereof."

  • you put the lust away
  • you overcome the thought
  • you, with the Holy Spirit of God, crush it and put it out

We'll see how that's done in just a bit here!.

Verse 13: "Likewise, do not yield your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin; rather, yield yourselves to God as those who are alive from the dead… [because we have passed from death unto life] …and your members as instruments of righteousness to God." If this is the case and you are doing this, though you may sin, sin shall not have dominion over you!

Verse 14: "For sin shall not rule over you… [it shall not rule you, but you overcome it] …because you are not under law… [because there's nothing you can do out here with law to change inwardly] …but… [you are] …under grace."

  • so that you receive the Spirit of God
  • so that you have the understanding of His Word
  • so that you have right standing with God

Then he asked the question again:

Verse 15: "What then? shall we sin, Shall we sin because we are not under law, but under grace? MAY IT NEVER BE!"—don't ever let that happen! That's the battle and the struggle that we go through, which we'll see here in just a little bit.

Verse 16: "Don't you realize that to whom you yield yourselves as servants to obey, you are servants of the one you obey, whether it is of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?" That's the choice that God has laid down here before us. So we're not to yield to the flesh, we're not to yield to sin.

Now then this creates quite a problem, because you see as long as we are in the flesh, we still have to fight sin. The sin begins right up here, and this is where the spiritual battle is. And so, in living God's way because we're still in the flesh, there are going to be the pulls of the flesh. There's going to be, as we will see, a law of sin within us, as well as the law of death that we have to fight.

Romans 7:14: "For we know that the Law is spiritual; but I am carnal, having been sold as a slave under sin…. [Paul said that of himself] …because what I am working out myself, I do not know. For what I do not desire to do, this I do; moreover, what I hate, this is what I do" (vs 14-15).

When you sin, don't you hate yourself because of it? Don't you hate that sin because of what you have done? Yes! When it fully comes to your mind, and the gravity and the magnitude of it, it drives you to repentance. That's the whole purpose of it.

Verse 16: "But if I am doing what I do not desire to do, I agree with the Law that it is good." There's nothing wrong with the Law! In the world around us, they like to take deviancy and bring it down and make sin normal and natural. Not God's way. No way. You consent to the law. It's good. You don't change the law so you can live with your sin. That's the way the world does it.

Verse 17: "So then, I am no longer working it out myself; rather, it is sin that is dwelling within me." Every one of us have sin dwelling in us. This is what we need to overcome. And Christ and His Spirit within us gives us the strength and the power to overcome. So, Paul goes on saying:

Verse 18: "Because I fully understand that there is not dwelling within me—that is, within my fleshly being—any good.…"

You know, of human nature there's nothing good about it what so ever. Oh, it can do good, but ultimately because it has the law of sin and death in it, it can do nothing really truly lastingly good, that is eternal good.

"…For the desire to do good is present within me… [and every person desires to do good, but they don't do it] … but how to work out that which is good, I do not find…. [of himself it's an impossibility without God] …For the good that I desire to do, I am not doing; but the evil that I do not desire to do, this I am doing. But if I do what I do not desire to do, I am no longer working it out myself, but sin that is dwelling within me. Consequently, I find this law in my members…" (vs 18-21). This is the law of human nature, which is called the law of sin and death!

"…that when I desire to do good, evil is present with me. For I delight in the Law of God according to the inward man… [I'm not hostile to that] …but I see another law within my own members, warring against the law of my mind…" (vs 21-23).

This is the pull of the flesh and the fight of the mind in overcoming human nature that is the whole understanding of why we need to be unleavened in Christ, because only Christ can change that nature. Only being created in Christ can it be done, see.

Verse 23: "But I see another law within my own members, warring against the law of my mind, and leading me captive to the law of sin that is within my own members." So we have the law of sin and death in us!

Now then, do you ever feel like this? Am I ever going to overcome? How is this thing going to be won? Paul felt the same way:

Verse 24: "O what a wretched man I am!…." Torn with this overcoming is a difficult proposition. But through Christ we do it.

"…Who shall save me from the body of this death? I thank God for His salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. Because of this, on the one hand, I myself serve the Law of God with my mind; but on the other hand, with the flesh, I serve the law of sin" (vs 24-25).

  • because God has called you
  • because God has justified you
  • because God has forgiven you
  • because God has given you His Holy Spirit
  • because you stand before God with the imputed righteousness of Christ and the gift of righteousness

here is the good news, Romans 8:1: "Consequently, there is now no condemnation…" If you're battling, and warring, and fighting, and overcoming this, there is no condemnation to you because you are operating by the Spirit of God.

"…to those who are in Christ Jesus, who are not walking according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit" (v 1). If you have this spiritual battle going on in you, you know you have the Spirit of God, otherwise you wouldn't have the battle.

Here's how we overcome, v 2: "Because the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus has delivered me… [justified me] …from the law of sin and death…. [He did this] …For what was impossible for the Law to do… [the law can't make you do anything, but it declares your sinfulness] …in that it was weak through the flesh, God having sent His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh; in order that the righteousness of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who are not walking according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit" (vs 2-4).

Let's see how we overcome. We've got this inner struggle. We've got this inner fight. The perfection comes with the battle and the fight, and the growing and the overcoming through the grace of God

2-Corinthians 10:4: "…For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal…" You cannot overcome carnal nature with carnal nature. It's not possible. It's like trying to make a dark room light by adding darkness. It's a contradictory thing, you see.

"…but mighty through God… [you need the power of God, the Spirit of God, the help of God] …to the overthrowing of strongholds… [the strongest hold is right up here] …casting down vain imaginations… [reasonings] …and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought into the obedience of Christ…" (vs 4-5).

Here's how you overcome with the Spirit of God. A lust, or a sin, or a temptation in our mind comes along, and with the Spirit of God we grab a hold of it, we cast it down and we replace it with the truth of God. That's why it's so important that we grow in grace and knowledge.

Paul explained it in another way in the book of Ephesians. Let's see what Paul said we needed to do. Here is how it is. Just like we put leaven out of our homes and we put sin out of our lives, so we are to put in unleavened bread and put in the righteousness of Christ through the Spirit of God. And then through this operation jointly together God creates in you the character of Christ.

Ephesians 4:22: "That concerning your former conduct, you put off the old man, which is corrupt according to deceitful lusts; and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind" (vs 22-23).

It is a spiritual battle. It is a spiritual thing that God does. So if you are having trouble in overcoming lust and sin, you go to God, you ask for His Spirit, you grab those thoughts of sin and you bring them down and you ask Christ to help you not let sin rule in your life and rule in your mind. But rather let the unleavenedness of the Spirit of God and truth purge it and cleanse it, you see, that you're renewed in the spirit of your mind. That's a tremendous thing, you see.

Verse 24: "And that you put on the new man… [be clothed with Christ] …which according to God is created in righteousness and Holiness of the Truth." Then he goes on showing all the carnal things we have to put away.

Ephesians 5:1: "Therefore, be imitators of God…" That's why you need to

  • know the Word of God
  • have the Spirit of God
  • know how Christ lived
  • know the teachings of the apostles
  • know the lessons that we have throughout all the rest of the Bible

"…as beloved children… [not rebellious, not cantankerous, but loving and kind] …and walk in love, even as Christ also loved us…" (v 1-2). That's the epitome of being unleavened. I'll tell you this, you love God with all your heart, and mind, and soul, and being, if you love your neighbor as yourself, and you love the brethren as Christ loved us, and walk in that love as He has loved us, then you are going to be overcoming. You are going to be bringing all of these thoughts into captivity through the power of God's Holy Spirit and you will be unleavened in Christ indeed. Now notice what this does. And we always have to be connected with the sacrifice of Jesus Christ for the propitiation of those sins.

Verse 2: "And walk in love, even as Christ also loved us, and gave Himself for us as an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savor."

Now look at the works of the flesh, v 3: "But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, do not permit it even to be named among you, as is fitting for saints; nor filthiness, nor foolish talking or jesting, which are not becoming; but instead, thanksgiving" (vs 3-4).

Your whole thrust of life has changed. Your whole modus operandi has changed. You are now walking in the Spirit.

Col. 3 is the perfect chapter of overcoming. It is the perfect chapter to tell us how to put out human nature and how to let God put His nature in us to create it in us. Create it in Christ Jesus. We have our part, God has His part.

Colossians 3:1: "Therefore, if you have been raised together with Christ… [out of the watery grave of baptism] …seek the things that are above…"

  • seek God's will
  • seek Christ
  • seek the Holy Spirit
  • seek the grace of God

"…where Christ is sitting at the right hand of God…. [as we have seen as our High Priest, as our advocate, as our propitiation] …Set your affection on the things that are above, and not on the things that are on the earth" (vs 1-2)—because whatever the greatest thing on the earth will not compare to what God is going to give you when you are resurrected from the dead.

Verse 3: "For you have died… [in this world] …your life has been hid together with Christ in God." That's what the whole operation of baptism does for you!

Verse 4: "When Christ, Who is our life, is manifested, then you also shall be manifested with Him in glory." It's not going to be the same old battle of overcoming the flesh. You're going to have a spirit mind, a spirit body, spirit understanding. It's going to be a magnificent thing. Because of that, you see, because of this hope, because of this goal.

Verse 5: "Therefore, put to death… [bring those things into captivity, bring all of those thoughts into the obedience of Christ by doing this] …your members, which are on earth… [and is within you] …sexual immorality, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil desires, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things, the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, among whom you also once walked… [in the past] …when you were living in these things" (vs 5-7).

Now then, just like we are to put on Christ, we're to put off these things, you see. Just like the righteousness of the saints is the linen, fine and clean and white, so also the filthiness of human nature is likened unto clothing and we put it off.

Verse 8: "But now, you should also put off all these things: wrath, indignation, malice, blasphemy…" All the things of the works of the flesh that originate in the mind and the pull of the flesh that we are fighting against.

"…and foul language from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old man together with his deeds, and have put on the new man, who is being renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him Who created him…" (vs 8-10). So we're to be renewed in mind, renewed in knowledge, and this is a continuous thing of walking in grace.

Verse 12: "Put on then, as the elect of God, Holy and beloved, deep inner affections… [that means deep inner compassion] …kindness, humility, meekness and long-suffering; forbearing one another, and forgiving one another if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so also you should forgive. And above all these things put on love… [that is the whole goal, the love of God] … which is the bond of perfection…. [then you] …let the peace of God rule in your hearts…" (vs 12-15).

I want to read you something so that you know that what we have just gone through has been understood by the Word of God 450 years ago. I want to read to you something here from, what is called A Pathway Into The Holy Scriptures by William Tyndale. Part of this will be what I'm going to have in a tribute to William Tyndale in the coming New Testament, which we're making progress on. Now this is very profound, and I want you to see, and I want you to listen, and I want you to understand that the message of God through Jesus Christ has been the same from the apostles down to this day. William Tyndale was a very prolific writer, and what we have with the Holy Scriptures today in English, he was the first one to translate it from the Greek. And he gave his life for it. Listen to what he wrote:

A Pathway Into The Holy Scriptures by William Tyndale
{https://newmatthewbible.org/pathway.html}

…as fully redeemed by the blood of our Savior Jesus Christ. Out of this commandment of love spring these: kill not thy neighbor; defile not his wife; bear no false witness against him; and finally, not only do not do these things in deed, but do not covet in your heart his house, his wife, his man-servant, maid-servant, ox, ass, or whatsoever is his

William Tyndale upheld the Laws of God in the exact same way that we do today!

…so that these laws pertaining unto our neighbor are not fulfilled in the sight of God, except with love. He who does not love his neighbor does not keep the commandment not to defile his neighbor 's wife even though he never touches her or sees her or thinks about her; for the commandment is, even though your neighbor 's wife be ever so beautiful, and you have an exceptional opportunity given to you, and she consents or perhaps seduces you (as Potiphar's wife did Joseph), yet see that you love your neighbor so well that for very love you cannot find in your heart to do such wickedness.

And even so, he who trusts in anything except God and his Son Jesus Christ keeps no commandment at all in the sight of God.

In other words, if you keep the commandments of God just in the letter, out here, and you don't love God and love Christ, you're really not keeping any commandment at all, truly spiritually speaking.

For he that has trust in any creature, whether in heaven or in earth, except God and his Son Jesus, can see no reason to love God with all his heart &c., nor to abstain from dishonoring his name, nor to keep the holy day for the love of his doctrine…

I believe that he was coming to understand about the Holy Days of God

…nor to obey lovingly the rulers of this world; nor any reason to love his neighbor as himself or abstain from hurting him if and when he may get some profit by him while keeping himself safe. And likewise, I may obey no worldly power against the law to love my neighbor as myself…

And to know how contrary this law is to our nature…

the laws of God and the law of love

…and understand that it is condemnation not to have this law written in our hearts even though we never commit the forbidden deeds; and how there is no other way to be saved from this condemnation than through repentance toward the law and faith in Christ's blood, which are the very inward baptism of our souls.…

the circumcision made without hands

…Of these, the washing and the dipping of our bodies in the water are the outward sign.

The outward plunging of the body under water signifies that we repent inwardly, and that we profess to fight against sin and lusts and to kill them every day more and more with the help of God and with our diligence in following the doctrine of Christ and the leading of his Spirit. It also signifies that we believe ourselves to be washed from the natural condemnation in which we are born and from all the wrath of the law and from all the infirmities and weaknesses that yet remain in us after we have consented to the law and yielded ourselves to be students thereof.…

we study it, and know it, and learn it

…And we believe ourselves to be washed from all the imperfectness of all our deeds done with cold love, and from all actual sins which chance upon us while we try to do differently and fight against them, hoping to sin no more.

Thus repentance and faith begin at our baptism and when we first profess the laws of God. They continue unto our life's end, and grow as we grow in the Spirit: for the more perfect we are, the greater is our repentance and the stronger our faith. And thus, as the Spirit and doctrine on God's part and repentance and faith on our part, beget us anew in Christ, they also make us grow ever more perfect and save us unto the end; and never leave us until all sin be put off and we are clean purified and full formed and fashioned after the similitude and likeness of the perfection of our Savior Jesus, whose gift all is.

I tell you what, that is the action of the Holy Spirit of God. Brethren, we are part of the unleavenedness of Christ, which He has extended from the time of the apostles down to now, through all generations. The very fact that we have the Bible, the very fact that we have these words that we can read and study, comes right back to how God dealt in the life of William Tyndale.

Brethren, let's keep the Feast, not with the leaven of wickedness and malice, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth, for in Christ you are unleavened.

Scriptures from The Holy Bible in Its Original Order, A Faithful Version (except where noted)

Scriptural References:

  • Leviticus 23:6-8
  • 1 Corinthians 5:6-8
  • John 6:25, 53-57
  • Galatians 3:26
  • Romans 2:28-29
  • Romans 3:19-27, 31
  • Romans 5:1-12. 17, 21, 8
  • Ephesians 2:1-5, 8-10
  • 1 John 2:5-6
  • Ephesians 2:10
  • Romans 6:1-8, 11-16
  • Romans 7:14-25
  • Romans 8:1-5
  • Ephesians 4:22-24
  • Ephesians 5:1-4
  • Colossians 3:1-10, 12-15

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Psalm 1119
  • Romans 1

Also referenced:

  • Sermon Series: Preparation for Passover
  • Book: A Pathway Into The Holy Scriptures by William Tyndale

FRC
Reformatted/Corrected—bo 3/2019

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