Wednesday, 11 June 2014
Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. 1 Corinthians 5:8
As was noted in the previous verse, the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread of the Old Testament pictured, or foreshadowed, the work of Christ. Paul claims their fulfillment is found in Him. As these were “Feasts of the Lord” (meaning Jehovah), the connection is obvious – Jesus Christ is Jehovah Incarnate. How people miss this is rather remarkable!
Because their fulfillment is found in Him and because we are “in Christ,” Paul says, “Therefore…” The coming words explain our duties based on our position in Him. And what does he detail for us then? He says, “Let us keep the feast.” In other words we could say, “because Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us, let us keep the rest of the Feast of Unleavened Bread.” It is a metaphor asking us to consider our position in Him, the sinless Lamb of God.
Christ is the fulfillment of the Passover. Because of His shed blood, God has “passed over” us and we are now found in Him. Because we are in Him, we should “keep the feast, not with old leaven.” What we once were and the way we once acted are no longer appropriate ways of conducting ourselves. If Christ had to die to redeem us, then there must have been a need for Him to die to redeem us! Why would we continue in a life that necessitated such an action. That old life consisted of “the leaven of malice and wickedness.”
This is certainly a reference to what necessitated his words in the first place – the man caught up in sexual immorality who is noted in verses 1-5 is being used as an example of such a debased life and it is a lifestyle which is contradictory to holy living in Christ. Instead of following such a path, Paul implores those in Corinth (and thus the church which remains to this day) that we should instead keep the feast “with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.”
Jesus Christ is sinless;
We are in Christ;
Therefore, our conduct should be reflective of the sinless position we hold.
The Feast of Unleavened Bread, a Feast mandated by God for Israel 3500 years ago, pictured those in the church age who have been redeemed by Jesus Christ. We are living in the Feast and thus we should follow the example – holy living for those who have been declared sinless. Anything else would be contradictory to the honorable position to which we have been elevated.
Life application: The Old Testament isn’t a compilation of outdated and useless books. Instead, it is the very tool we need to fully understand the marvelous work of God in Christ – why we need Him, what His work entails, and how His work applies to us. Let us not forsake reading, studying, and sharing the whole counsel of God found in both testaments of the Bible.
Lord, help my heart not to be restless for anything but You. Help me to be satisfied with all that You have given me and not to lust after or covet things which I have no right to. I know that with food, clothing, and my Bible I have more than enough to be content. Along with these, You have given me so very much. I thank You for every blessing that has come my way. Let those things be sufficient to keep me from wanting more. Thank You for Your provision. Amen.