We are fast approaching the Passover season and Days of Unleavened Bread. I was reading this morning (April 3, 2012) about the names that Christ is called and one of them is “The Bread of Life. Therefore, I thought to go and study this out.
The children of Israel went into Egypt under the leadership of Joseph and when a new king arose up over Egypt that did not know Joseph, the children of Israel, (the son of Abraham) became slaves.
Scripture tells us that the Egyptian taskmasters afflicted the children of Israel with their burdens and made them miserable with hard labor—making bricks and mortar and backbreaking work in the fields. They piled on the work, crushing them under the cruel workload. The children of Israel served Egypt under very hard bondage. However, Yahweh heard their groaning, and God remembered His covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob and put His plan into motion to redeem the children of Israel.
Yahweh had instituted the Passover, which beautifully represents the Atonement – At-one-ment. This means that through the blood of the lamb that was posted on the doors on the night to be much observed (remembered and celebrated) the first-born Israelite might be saved from the great death that went through all the land of Egypt. It was this night that brought the dawn of a new day.
Yahweh had come to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that country and bring them to a good land with wide-open spaces, a land lush with milk and honey. In Egypt, the Pharaoh had previously commanded that all the sons that had been born to the Hebrew women were to be thrown into the river. (Exodus 1: 19-22) This was his idea of how to stop the population growth of the Hebrew people. Moses was one of the children that was rescued from the river.
Yahweh had called Moses to lead the children out and he was to give the Pharaoh a message: Thus saith the LORD, Israel is my son, even my firstborn: Let my son go, that he may serve me: and if thou refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay thy son, even thy firstborn. Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness.” It had taken a series of plagues to convince the Pharaoh but finally after the plague of death, He bowed down to Yahweh’s command.
Delivered from the plague of death by the blood of the Passover Lamb, the children of Israel left Egypt. (A symbol of sin) Four hundred and thirty years earlier, seventy people had come into the land of the Pharaoh’s with Jacob, the grandson of Abraham whose name had been changed to Israel. Now they set out from Egypt taking with them all their families and their flocks and herds and the riches of Egypt leaving nothing behind.
Freed from their bondage, that morning the Egyptians begged the Israelites to leave their country immediately There was no time to prepare food so the Israelites bound up their unleavened bread dough and strapped it to their backs and their beasts with all the rest of their belongings and set out for the wilderness where they had been called by Yahweh to serve Him. The Bible records that six hundred thousand men left Egypt. Their mothers, wives and children surely swelled their numbering to almost two million. A nation would be born out of these.
The children of Israel were commanded to rehearse in this annual memorial and reflect on it every year and retelling this event to their children. All the congregation of Israel was told that they must keep the Passover. They were to observe this annual holy day and celebrate for seven days rejoicing in the blessing, celebrating the anniversary of their redemption. In the exodus from Egypt, Yahushua is the Passover Lamb whose blood represented their redemption and freedom from slavery.
While in the wilderness, the LORD told Moses, “Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall go out and gather a certain rate every day, that I may prove them, whether they will walk in my law, or no.” And when the children of Israel saw it, they said one to another, “It is manna”: for they wist not what it was. And Moses said unto them, “This is the bread which the LORD hath given you to eat.”
They were told to gather enough for each person, about two quarts per person; gathering enough for everyone in their tent. Moses told the people that on Sabbath, a day of rest, a holy Sabbath to Yahweh; that they were not to gather any of the manna, the bread from heaven. They were told that whatever they planned to bake, they were to bake on preparation day (Friday) and whatever they planned to boil, to do the same and then set aside the leftovers until morning. In addition, the people went about, and gathered it, and ground it in mills, or beat it in a mortar, and baked it in pans, and made cakes of it: and the taste of it was as the taste of fresh oil. They set aside what was left until morning, as Moses had commanded. It did not smell bad and there were no worms in it.
Moses had told them that they must put away all leaven from their tables and from their houses for seven days and they must offer the blood of the sacrifice without leaven. They were not to break any bones of the Passover Lamb and they were only to sacrifice the Passover only at the place appointed by Yahweh. And that all the males of the congregation must appear before the LORD at Passover time.
On the night of the exodus from Egypt, (The Passover) each family sacrificed and ate or shared a lamb, after smearing its blood on the doorpost of the house, so that the angel of death would “pass over” that house and not kill that family’s first born son when He killed the first born sons of the families of Egypt. (The last of the ten plagues)
Both the manna and the lamb represented Lord Yahushua the bread from heaven that became the Passover Lamb of God.
Two hundred years or so later, Yahushua was in a synagogue while in Capernum, teaching on this very subject. The crowd had asked Him what could they do, to perform the works of Yahweh. They were not asking how to do miracles but how to please Yahweh. He told them that they had to believe in Whom that One sent. In other words to believe in Him Whom had been sent by Yahweh.
Then they asked Him, “ What sign are You doing, so that we could see and we would believe in You”? The crowd told Him that their fathers ate manna in the wilderness and that he had given them bread to eat; however, they were referring to Moses. Yahushua corrected them by saying that Moses had not given them bread from heaven but that His Father was giving them the true bread from heaven for the bread of God is that which comes from heaven and gives life to the world.
Then the crowd said to Him, “Lord, You must always give us this bread.” And He answered them, “I AM the Bread of Life: the one who comes to Me would not hunger, and the one who believes in Me will not ever thirst. But I have said to You that you have seen Me and you do not believe.” They still did not trust Him and He knew it. They refused to trust Him with their sin.
Yahushua told them that everyone that His Father gives Him will come to Him and who ever comes to Him, He would not turn away. These are the chosen and these are the called. This is as forthright a statement of the paradox of predestination and free will as can be found. The Father has given certain people to Yahushua. How does one find out if they are one of them? Everyone is given free will and can choose and come to Him because they have Yahushua’s promise that He would not turn anyone away. When one seeks Him they will find Him, when they seek Him with all their heart. Yahushua is available to anyone who is hungry and thirsty for the Bread of Life.
Yahushua went on to explain to the crowd that He was the Bread of Life that came from The Father to do His will and not His own. He would do the will of the Father that sent Him. He went on to say that He would not loose any that the Father had given Him and that He would would raise them up on the Last Day.
The folks started murmuring in the crowd, just as they had in the wilderness but this time their murmuring concerned Him because He had said, “I AM the Bread that descended from heaven.” They questioned Him saying that they knew His father and mother and how dare He say that He came from heaven. He told them to stop their murmuring and told them that no one was able to come to Him unless His Father that had sent Him would draw them and He mentioned again that He would raise them, (Those that the Father had drawn to Him) on the Last Day. This is another insight into the framework of free will.
Then He tells the crowd, “It has been written in the prophets, ‘And all will be taught by God; (Isaiah 54:13) everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to Me. Not that anyone has seen the Father, except the One Who was with God, He has seen the Father. Most assuredly, I say to you, the one who believes has eternal life. I AM that Bread of Life.”
He went on to tell them again that yes, their fathers had ate the manna in the wilderness and they died. Nevertheless that this One, is the bread that descends from heaven so that whoever would eat of it would not then die and that anyone would eat this Bread that they would live forever. Also that the Bread which He would give on behalf of the life of the world was His flesh. Unless one would eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, they would not have life in them. Because of what He had said, the crowd went from grumbling to disputing what He had said because they could not bear to listen. This became an inseparable barrier for many of His followers and some turned back and no longer traveled with Him.
Although the hearers in that audience had been shocked by His metaphorical and symbolic language and seeking a reason to disprove who He said that He was, they did not obey His call to repentance and loyalty. Not all who would hear this message would react to it the same as these folks had.
To eat the flesh of the Son of Man is to absorb His entire way of being and living. The word ‘sarx’ (flesh) is also used to refer to human nature in general. To the physical, emotional and mental; the very act of willing, choosing, or resolving and exercise of that will are aspects of human existence.
Yahushua wants us to live, feel, think and act like Him. By the power of the Holy Spirit He enables us to follow in the path that He has set before us. Likewise to drink His blood is to absorb His self-sacrificing life motivation and indeed, His very life, since the life of the flesh is in the blood. (Leviticus 17:11) Jew and Gentile alike who are open to this truth of who Yahushua is, are able to accept this truth and find Him acceptable into their very beings by the power of His Spirit.
The folks left Egypt after observing Passover. Before Yahushua left the earth, He too had taken Passover with His disciples on the night to be much observed.
And as they were about to eat, Yahushua, after He took bread and praised Yahweh, broke it and when He gave it to the disciples He said, “You must take this and you must now eat, this is My body.” Then having taken a cup, after it He gave thanks he gave the cup to them saying, “You must all drink from this, for this is My blood of the covenant, which is being poured out on behalf of many for the forgiveness of sins. And I say to you, I will not drink from the fruit of this vine from now until that day when I drink this with you anew in My Fathers Kingdom.” ~ Matthew 26:26-29 ONMB
And Jesus said unto them, “I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.” ~ John 6:35
“I am that bread of life.” ~ John 6:48
Just as the manna in the wilderness had sustained the children of Israel, now the same bread from heaven would sustain humanity with eternal life through the blood of the Passover, Our Lord Yahushua HaMashiach.
His blood applied to our hearts through faith gives us protection from the law’s requirement of death for those whom repent of their transgression against the established Law of God. This is our sin.
Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. ~ 1st John 3:4
Apart from trust in the Messiah, who is our Passover, there is no escape from sin and the judgment of sin (the utter destruction of final death) after the last judgment.
Saul, the man whom is now called Paul, the Apostle of Christ, also taught that man is to keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us: Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. ~ 1st Corinthians 5:7-8
Here Yahushua’s death is understood as that of the Passover Lamb, ‘Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us’. Sometimes the Passover Seder is confused with the Feast of Unleavened Bread yet is actually a feast all on its own.
The Feast of Unleavened Bread occurs concurrently with Passover after the night to be much observed (Passover eve), and lasts for seven days. The Feast of Unleavened Bread is meant as a reminder to us of the Israelites’ redemption from bondage in Mitzaryim (Egypt) and also of our own redemption from sin through Yahushua HaMashiach (Jesus Christ). These Feast like I said were institued by Yahweh. They were not started by the Jewish people.
Therefore, when Paul taught the Corinthians (a group of people who were spiritually asleep), to clean out the old leaven, Paul was teaching the Corinthians not only to observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread, but also to clean out the old sin from their lives.
He said, ‘let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth’.
When we find leaven, we are to throw it out — there should not be any leaven found in our houses, no old sin found in our lives. This is another reason to stop and consider before eating and drinking the elements of the Last Supper, the night before the folks left Egypt and the night that Yahushua shared His last supper with His disciples.
Sharing and observing the Feast of Unleavened Bread gives insight on the spiritual truths of the Scriptures and is a healthy reminder to live pleasing to the Lord.
Those Covenant believers and congregations that do celebrate the Feasts and study the roots of the Tree of Life, discover great truths and blessings. They more clearly recognize Yahwey’s faithfulness and that “they do not support the root, but the root supports them.” (Romans 11:18) .
The tomb is empty because our Passover has risen from the world that is plagued with sin. The tomb is empty because no sin was overlooked. The head of the household has accepted the perfect sacrifice that covered all sin. All leaven is now in His possession; that which is seen and not yet seen. One day Yahushua will come and He will search out Jerusalem with candles , purging out the old leaven so that we may all be a new lump; the new bread of sincerity and truth prepared for by The Bread of Life ‘and’ for Him.
- “Shadows of Good Things to Come” (eudoranachand.wordpress.com)