Christian Churches of God
The Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread
(Edition 2.0 20030612-20070125)
Three times a year Christians are commanded to go out of their homes and gather together at a particular place to keep God’s Feasts. Passover and Unleavened Bread is the first of these three Feasts.
The Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread
Q: What is the Feast of Unleavened Bread?
It is one of the three major Feasts that the Lord God has commanded us to go to each year, when we gather together out of our homes to do as He tells us. We remember this time as when God brought the people of Israel out of Egypt.
Q: Why can’t we stay in our homes for the Feast of Unleavened Bread?
Deuteronomy 16:5-6 Thou mayest not sacrifice the Passover within any of thy gates, which the Lord thy God givith thee 6 But at the place which the Lord thy God shall choose to place his name in there thou shall sacrifice the Passover at even, at the going down of the sun, at the season that thou camest fourth from Egypt.
God tells us that we cannot eat any food that has leaven in it during the Passover.
Exodus 12:17-20 And ye shall observe the feast of unleavened bread; for in this selfsame day have I brought your armies out of the land of Egypt: therefore shall ye observe this day in your generations by an ordinance for ever. 18 In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at even, ye shall eat unleavened bread, until the one and twentieth day of the month at even. 19 Seven days shall there be no leaven found in your homes: for whosoever eateth that which is leavened, even that soul shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he be a stranger, or born in the land. 20 Ye shall eat nothing leavened; in all your habitations shall ye eat unleavened bread.
Here the Lord is telling us to observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread. He tells us when to do it. The First month of the year is called Abib. The Passover Feast starts on the 14th day of the month at evening and goes until the 21st of the month at evening. This is a seven-day Feast and we gather on the night of the 14th day to celebrate the Lord’s Supper. The 15th day and the 21st day are Holy Days. We keep these days holy just as we keep the weekly Sabbath holy. For seven days we eat unleavened bread. We must not eat anything with leaven. Leaven is an agent used in cooking that makes our cupcakes and bread rise and get fluffy. It is also the ingredient/substance that God uses to teach us that we are not complete without Him. This is a way of getting rid of the sin in our lives.
We are instructed to do this in all our generations forever. This means that parents observe it, then the children observe it, and then the children’s children observe it, and so on throughout the generations. It is important for children to be at the Passover to listen and learn what is done and why, so that when their time comes as an adult they will know when, how and why it is done.
Q: Why are we keeping Passover?
Exodus 12:14 And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the Lord throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by ordinance for ever.
We keep the Passover because the Lord God commands us to do so.
A memorial means a time we remember and celebrate something as a special event. Also, at this time we remember that Jesus died for our sins and after three days and three nights in the tomb he was raised from the dead to be with his Father, the One True God (Eloah). Remember that Jesus Christ’s sacrifice was for our sins. We should always keep the Feast and make sure we teach our children to keep the Feast, so they can teach their children. This way it cannot be forgotten. God said to keep the Passover forever!
2Kings 23:21 And the king commanded all the people, saying, “Keep the Passover unto the LORD your GOD, as it is written in the book of this covenant.”
Q: Why can’t children have the Lord’s Supper and go with their parents on the first night?
On the first night, only the converted baptised adults go to a special service where they wash each other’s feet and have the Lord’s Supper.
John 13:1-17 Now before the feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them to the end. 2 And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him; 3 Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he was come from God, and went to God; 4 He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself. 5 After that he poureth water into a basin, and began to wash the disciples feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded. 6 Then cometh he to Simon Peter: and Peter saith unto him, Lord, dost thou wash my feet? 7 Jesus answered and said into him, What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter.8 Peter saith into him, Thou shalt never wash my feet. Jesus answered him, If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me. 9 Simon Peter saith unto him, Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head. 10 Jesus saith to him, He that is washed needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean everywhit: and ye are clean, but not all. 11 For he knew who should betray him; therefore said he, Ye are not all clean. 12 So after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments, and was set down again. He said into them, Know ye what I have done to you? 13 Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am. 14 If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15 for I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you. 16 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him. 17 If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.
Jesus chose to wash his disciples’ feet as an example, to show us the kind of attitude we should have. Footwashing is an act of humility or being humbled. Adults wash each other’s feet every year to renew their baptism. After the footwashing we have the Lord’s Supper, which is for the converted baptised adults only. Each person eats a small piece of unleavened bread that symbolises the body and life of Jesus Christ and drinks a small cup of wine. The wine symbolises the blood of Jesus Christ. They are doing these things to show honour to the Lord God by following His Laws, and to show that they believe in Him.
John 6:53-57 Then Jesus said unto them, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, ye have no life in you. 54 Whoso eateth My flesh and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life: and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is meat indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. 56 He that eatheth my flesh and drinketh My blood, dwelleth in Me, and I in him. 57 As the living Father hath sent Me, and I live by the Father; so he that eateth Me, even he shall live by Me.
Here Jesus is explaining why the converted adults have to take the Lord’s Supper. If they do not take the Lord’s Supper they cannot enter the Kingdom of God. They must prepare themselves to take the Lord’s Supper by forgiving others of any problems that may have come up during the year, and must also consider their relationship with God and correct the things they have done wrong during the year.
Q: What are some unleavened foods?
Cut out some pictures of different kinds of foods. Paste the unleavened foods on one poster board and the leavened foods on another poster board. This will help us remember what has leavening in it and what does not.
Also look at the paper God’s Holy Days (No. CB22).