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THE CHAG HA MATSTSAH LECHEM
(THE FEAST OF UNLEAVENED BREAD)
March 2007

YAHUAH's Feast Days
 

      Through the Pecach (Passover) sacrifice of MashaYAH we are tsadaq (justified), forgiven of our past chatta'ah (sins) and "nathan {naw-than} yashar {yaw-shawr}" ("made right") in relation to YAHUAH, "Much more then having now been tsadaq by His blood, we shall be yasha (saved) from wrath through Him (Romans 5:9)" But even though we are now forgiven of our past chatta'ah, how will we "hayah yakol" (become overcomers) and put chatta'ah completely out of our chayah (lives)?

    The Chag ha Matstsah Lechem (The Feast of Unleavened Bread) provides the answer, and it pictures the next step in the ma-kha-sha-baw (the plan and purpose) of YAHUAH.  Right after commanding the Pecach, YAHUAH told Mosheh (Moses): "Sheba  yowm (seven days) you shall awkal mats-tsaw lekh'em (eat unleavened bread).  On the ri'shown yowm (first day) you shall remove leaven from your houses.  For whoever eats leavened bread from the ri'shown yowm (first day) until the shbiy'iy {sheb-ee-ee} yowm (seventh day), that person shall be karath (cut off) from Yashar'YAH.  On the ri'showm yowm there shall be a qadash miqra (set-a-part assembly), and on the shbiy'iy yowm there shall be a a qadash miqra for you.  No manner of mla'kah {mel-aw-kaw} work shall be done on them; but that which everyone must akal (eat)- that only may be prepared by you.  So you shall observe the chag ha matstsah lechem, for on this same yowm I will have brought your armies out of the bond of Mitsrayim (Egypt).  Therefore you shall observe this yowm throughout your generations as an everlasting chuqqah {khook-kaw}" Shemoth (Exodus) 12:15-17.

        Notice! During the Chag ha Matstsah Lechem was the time when YAHUAH palat (delivered) Yashar'YAH from Mitsrayim- a symbol or "type" of chatta'ah- so the symbolism of this chag pictures true believers coming out of spiritual Egypt- sin! Leaven itself, of course, is also a symbol of sin.  When YAHUSHA wanted to warn the limmuwd (disciples) about the treacherous sinful teachings of the Pharisees, He said to them:  "Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the Sadducees" Mattithyahu (Matthew) 16:6.  Literal leaven causes bread to rise, to "puff up," just as the attitude of sin- or self will- causes us to puff up and "do our own thing." And leaven tends to spread itself through dough, just as unchecked chatta'ah (sin) tends to spread through the assembly.  Therefore Sha'ul (Paul) told the Corinthians:  " Your hadar (boasting) is not towb (good).  Do you not yadah (know) that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? Therefore purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, since you truly are matstsah (unleavened).  For indeed MASHAYAH, our Pecach, was sacrificed for us" I Corinthians 5:6-7.

    Many religious groups believe that we are "saved" when our sins are forgiven.  And, indeed, we are at that time palat (saved) from the death penalty incurred by our past chatta'ah (sins).  But we can still fall away and lose out on yesha (salvation) [Ibrim (Hebrews) 6:4-8; 10:26-31; I Corinthians 9: 27].  Salvation is a process.  We are now "being saved (soul/mind)" [I Corinthians 1:18] and ultimately "shall be saved" (body)- if we endure to the end [Mattithyahu (Matthew) 24: 13].  Sha'ul explains: "For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to YAHUAH through the muwth (death) of His Ben (Son), much more having been reconciled, we shall be yasha (saved) by His chay (life)" Romans 5:10.  If we observe just the Pecach (Passover), we leave YAHUAH ma-kha-sha-baw (plan and purpose) incomplete.  We leave YAHUSHA hanging dead on the cross- end of story! Yet zakar (remember)- our Yasha (Savior) rose again! And it is through His resurrected chay (life) that we shall be yasha.

    YAHUSHA told His followers: "If you want to enter into [eternal] chayah (life) shamar the mitsvah (keep the commandments)" Mattithyahu (Matthew) 19:17.  He also told us to "repent" (Mark 1:15)- that is turn completely away from chatta'ah (sin) and go the other way, the way of tsedeq (righteousness).  In other words YAHUAH requires that we make a covenant with Him to put chatta'ah (sin) out of our lives- to stop breaking HIS TORAH and MITSVAH and start keeping them.

    In the cepher of Ephesians 2:8-10 Sha'ul (Paul) wrote: vs. 8 For by chen (favor) are ye yasha (saved) through aman (faith); and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of YAHUAH: vs. 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast." Many will say this verse proves that we need not do anything more than receive YAHUAH'S free gift- that we do not need to keep YAHUAH'S mitsvah. But how short-sighted a point of view this is, when you consider the very next verse in which Sha'ul explained that we are ". . . created in MashaYAH YAHUSHA unto good works, which YAHUAH hath before ordained that we-  should-  walk- in them." Indeed, our whole way of life must change from disobeying YAHUAH to obeying Him.  Of course, He knows that we will not succeed perfectly in this while still in the flesh (Romans 7:18, 24; I Yahanan [John] 1:8-10).  But He still requires that we grow in His character through a process of striving against and overcoming chatta'ah (sin) (I Corinthians 9: 24-27; Revelations 2: 11; 3:21; 21: 7).  Our past sinful life must be "sustauroo" (a powerful Greek word, meaning to be crucified with) MashaYAH, (Galatians 2:20).  We are baptized as a symbol of our old nature being figuratively buried with MashaYAH, then raised from the "watery grave" of baptism as a symbolic "resurrection" to new life in MashaYAH.  That being so, we should from then on chayah (live) according to His way.  The Chag ha Matstsah Lechem (Feast of Unleavened Bread) pictures this process of chayah (living) His way, putting chatta'ah (sin) out of our chayah (lives).

    So Sha'ul (Paul) commanded the Gowy edah (Gentile assembly) at Corinth: "Therefore let us shamar the chag (keep the feast) [the Feast of Unleavened Bread], not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the matstsah lechem (unleavened bread) of sincerity and emeth" (I Corinthians 5:8).

     Obviously, this is a New Testament command to shamar the Chag ha Matstsah Lechem! And this command was given to a primarily Gowy edah (Gentile assembly)- so there was not any "Yehudim" here! In verse 7, Sha'ul (Paul) links the matstsah lechem chagag (unleavened bread festival) with the Pecach (Passover) that immediately precedes it, since Pecach deals with forgiveness of past sins whereas the Chag ha Matstsah Lechem deals with the "follow through"- the determination, with YAHUAH'S help, to grow in chen (favor) and in knowledge "to a tamiym iysh" (perfect man), to the measure of stature of the fullness of MashaYAH" (Ephesians 4:13).

    So how are we to keep this feast? As it approaches each year, we are to remove leavening (and bread products that are already leavened) from our houses and property.  Then for sheba yowm (seven days) we are to eat no leaven, (Incidentally, there is nothing wrong with literal leaven itself.  It is simply a symbol for sin during this feast).  And as we go through this chagag (festival), if we happen across some leaven in the home that we had previously overlooked, we are to put that out as well Shemoth (Exodus) 13:7.

    While we search about our property doing this "spring cleaning," we should zakar (remember) that, just as crumbs of leavened bread may fall into various nooks and crannies around our homes, so chatta'ah (sin) may be lurking in the hidden corners of our chayah (lives).  Indeed, we may be quite surprised at some of the places we find leavening! We should be asking YAHUAH to thoroughly clean us up and scrub us out spiritually- even showing us parts of our minds that we did not yadah (know) were harboring chatta'ah (sin).

    For sheba yowm (seven days)- the number of tamiym (perfection)- we are to put leaven out of our homes and off our property.  We are to focus on getting completely rid of chatta'ah (sin).  We are to zakar (remind) ourselves through the observance of these YAHUAH- giving- Mitsvah that we have a continuing responsibility before YAHUAH to yakol (overcome) ourselves, the 'owlam (world) and Saw-tawn (Satan) the Devil.  For this is the emeth (true) meaning of the Yowm ha Matstsah Lechem (Days of Unleavened Bread).

 

References
The New King James Version of the Bible
The Scriptures: Published and Distributed by Institute for Scripture Research
The Word of Yahweh: Second Edition; Assembly of Yahweh
The New Strong's Expanded Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible
The Young's Analytical Concordance to the Bible

**Most of the information in this writing was taken from the book,
 "The Holy Days: God's Master Plan" by Roderick C. Meredith

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