This past week was the feast of unleavened bread. It follows directly on the heals of Passover and it is a week of eating only things that do NOT contain yeast or any type of leavening agent. This had an interesting effect during the Biblical time period bc of how they made bread. While the bread was sitting out and rising they would remove a portion of it. Just a small piece of the dough which is called a “starter piece” and they’d hang on to that small piece. Then when they were making a new loaf of bread they’d take that starter piece and mix it in to the new loaf bc that old piece of bread dough would contain the yeast for the new loaf so the bread could rise faster and be eaten sooner. They did this each time they made bread. You always carried dough over.
Well, during the feast of unleavened bread you weren’t allowed to have anything containing yeast in your house. So goodbye to the starter piece. Everything had to be eaten or thrown away. That meant that after this week was done when you wanted to have bread again you had to start over with a completely NEW loaf of bread w/o anything OLD to add to it. This new loaf was new in every sense of the word. The old loaf was completely gone and in its place was something new.
What a picture not only for Israel but also for us this time of year. We too have been made new. 2 Cor 5:17 – “if anyone is in Christ, he is a NEW creation. The OLD has gone, the NEW has come.” This time of year God specifically created a festival that was to remind His people that they were made new. This is a time to start over, to let go of things from your past and acknowledge that you have been cleansed – inside and out. The old man has been put to death and is dying and in its place is a new man, a new woman who is filled with the Spirit of the Living God.
May the Holy Spirit use this time yearly to remind us that we are a new creation in Christ. The old truly has gone, we have been made new. And that is a reason to praise God.