10. Unleavened Bread
The reality of the feast of unleavened bread is so very simple – Christ alone. From the moment we were born again, our lives have never been “Christ-and,” but “Christ-only.”
10. Unleavened Bread
I wrote the letter “Passover” in a sober tone, partly influenced by the Old Testament text of the journey of Israel. Some sobriety is appropriate, but while attending Easter service at Lakewood after I sent out the letter, the Lord reminded me that Passover is celebration and joy. Thus when I re-write some of these letters in their final drafts, I will change the tone from speaking against “rebellion” to an invitation to joy. That is always my heart, even when I write words that come across as stern.
More than that, I am discovering that there are a number of little things, details, about the feasts, that I have had wrong and have written out from my incorrect knowledge. I have relied on what I have been taught to some extent. This is evidence that we must continually see what God actually says, since it is so often different from what people say He says. These details, however, do not affect the truth of Christ as I have taught. Rather, every time we see what God says more clearly than we had, we see Christ revealed even more significantly.
The Feast of Unleavened Bread begins with Passover. The Israelites ate the unleavened bread, the bitter herbs, and the roast lamb at the same time, immediately after they had applied the blood to the doorposts of their house. Moses had instructed them to have sufficient unleavened bread for a rapid journey out of Egypt, sufficient for several days. Thus, part of the reason for no leaven, or yeast, in the bread was that it might keep longer and be more suitable to pack and to eat while walking.
In further reading, I find that others have a similar idea, that the crossing of the Red Sea likely occurred at the end of the seven-day feast. Thus for us, the feast of unleavened bread joins together the moment we were born again to the moment we came up out of the water when we were baptized.
Here are the primary points of the feast of unleavened bread from the several accounts.
• The Feast of Unleavened Bread begins on the fifteenth day of the first month.
• Both the first day and the seventh day of the feast are Sabbaths, no regular work is to be done on those days.
• All seven days only unleavened bread must be eaten; leaven must even be removed from the houses.
• Anyone who eats leavened bread is cut off.
• The seventh day of the feast is to be a feast to the Lord.
• The feast is a memorial, to tell one's children what the Lord did for you in delivering you from Egypt.
• Each day a specific offering is offered to the Lord – two young bulls, one ram, and seven lambs in their first year. Along with each are specific grain offerings. Also a goat is offered each day for a sin offering.
• All animals offered in sacrifice must be without blemish.
• All meat sacrificed must be eaten before sundown.
Obviously, the primary distinction of this feast from the other feasts is that it is the feast of “unleavened” bread. What is leaven? Rather than exploring the natural qualities of yeast, let's bring in our understanding from what God says in the New Testament. Remember that Jesus said that everything He spoke was figurative; that means that it pointed directly to a deeper meaning, as Paul said, “This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church.” Thus all things Jesus spoke actually referred to Him living now as us.
Here are the New Testament references on leaven.
Now when His disciples had come to the other side, they had forgotten to take bread. Then Jesus said to them, “Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the Sadducees.” . . . Then they understood that He did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and Sadducees. Matthew 16:5-12
In the meantime, when an innumerable multitude of people had gathered together, so that they trampled one another, He began to say to His disciples first of all, “Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. For there is nothing covered that will not be revealed, nor hidden that will not be known. Therefore whatever you have spoken in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have spoken in the ear in inner rooms will be proclaimed on the housetops. Luke 12:1-3
And again He said, “To what shall I liken the kingdom of God? It is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal till it was all leavened.” Luke 13:20-21
Your glorying is not good. Do you not 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 unleavened. For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us. 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 6:6-8
Indeed I, Paul, say to you that if you become circumcised, Christ will profit you nothing. And I testify again to every man who becomes circumcised that he is a debtor to keep the whole law. You have become estranged from Christ, you who attempt to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace. For we through the Spirit eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love. You ran well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth? This persuasion does not come from Him who calls you. A little leaven leavens the whole lump. Galatians 5:2-9
The reality of the feast of unleavened bread is so very simple – Christ alone. From the moment we were born again, our lives have never been “Christ-and,” but “Christ-only.” When we sit down upon the Mercy Seat, we discover that our lives have never been anything but Christ conforming Himself to us and then transforming us into His full revelation.
It is clear what God means by “leaven” and “no-leaven.” We can draw four simple truths from these verses.
1. We truly are unleavened.
2. Unleavened bread IS sincerity and truth.
3. Leaven is the adding of anything to our lives, to our eating, to our thinking and speaking of ourselves other than Christ our only life.
4. Just a little bit of “Christ-and” spreads “not-Christ” through everything.
Thus Philemon 6 is the best expression of our continual FEAST of unleavened bread. That the sharing of your faith may become effective by the acknowledgment of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.
Christ becomes us in our experience the moment we are born again. Even baptism in water is not necessary for Christ already to be living as us. Yet baptism reconfirms the absolute.
Present and immediate union with Christ is the only Christian life. Jesus drank all the dregs that we are in Gethsemane. As we eat of Him, from the moment we first know Him, He carries us in all that we are.
Here are two more expressions of the feast of unleavened bread.
I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, yet not I, but Christ lives in me, and the life I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God who loves me and gives Himself for me.
In that day you shall know that I am in the Father and you in Me and I in you.
Eating of both roasted lamb and unleavened bread is eating of Christ. May I refer you to my letter “Eating of Christ.” I would repeat here what I wrote there if I focused only on that aspect of the truth of this feast. Yet we will never end of eating of Christ nor of discovering new courses of the supper of marriage union.
It seems in this letter, I must continue to contrast our joy of eating of Christ our only life, of acknowledging all the wondrously good things of Christ inside of us, with what is not, as these references on leaven require. But we look at the contrast of not-Christ only to see the clear boundaries of Christ and thus to rejoice forever inside His life in us.
First, what leaven is NOT. Leaven is not “sin.” Leaven is not “error” or “false doctrine.” No-leaven is not anything unreachable by any new believer, by any babe in Christ. New believers in Christ cannot consider sinlessness, nor are they free from “incorrect doctrine,” along with all of us. Yet new believers in Christ can know that Christ now lives as them, carrying them utterly inside Himself, including all of their sin and self.
In my next letter, “Firstfruits,” I want to explore the distinction of God in calling out from the bulk of those who belong to Jesus, a firstfruits, an elect, whose sole purpose is to open the door wide open for all the many who also love the Lord Jesus, though they are kept bound by some limitation of Christ. Yet in any consideration of such a calling upon our lives, we hold absolutely this distinction made by the feast of unleavened bread.
All who belong to Jesus are carried by Him alone. Their only lack is that they do not know that, for whatever reason, whether their own fear or simply by God's seasons for them. Thus whenever we speak of any limitation of Christ in Christianity, any falling short, any wrong understanding, we never consider anyone as being outside of or apart from Christ living as them right now as they find themselves to be. Rather, we receive all in just the same way that Jesus receives us, with no condemnation and with wide-open arms, seeing Christ regardless of any outward appearance.
Yet we do not give ourselves to all in a close commitment. We know people. We receive all with joy, but we trust only those who are honest.
Leaven is dishonesty.
Look through the references above. Every use of leaven boils down to one thing: dishonesty. Leaven is Adam presenting fig leaves and tree trunks as his appearance before God's simple question: “Adam, where are you?”
God has a cure for dishonesty. Whatever is carefully hidden will be shouted abroad and known by everyone. Dishonesty cannot work; it will not endure. The bluster and facade will last only a short while, and then every secret of the heart will be known by everyone.
– Unless we take God's option of replacing ourselves with Christ. Christ, not I. Then, yes, everything secret will still be proclaimed; there is no getting around that. But if Christ is our only self, then the only things said about us must be the good things of Christ inside of us.
Here's the simple truth. Secrecy and hiding are earthly deceptions only. They do not exist. All thoughts or words or deeds kept secret in the earth are already well-known in the heavens. A blind man might say, “My hair is not tangled and messy because I cannot see it.” Yet to everyone else it is obvious that his hair is tangled and messy.
This is the skin of the beast with which God wrapped Adam and Eve. It is the cataracts upon our eyes that prevent us from knowing that in the heavens where we live and move right now, nothing is secret, all things are known. There are quite a number of living, thinking, feeling, observing, choosing persons who are, right now, fully observant of you in everything you think, say, and do. Some of those persons are good and some are evil. Regardless, they know you; they know all about you, and they are very real.
Dishonesty serves no real purpose. In fact, it's only purpose is to deceive one's self, to keep the mask upon one's own view of one's own shame.
Since there is no shame in Christ, dishonesty, leaven, is truly without purpose.
Dishonesty is the continual human acknowledgment of the accuser, of the serpent. Only acknowledging every good thing of Christ inside of us causes dishonesty to vanish.
But dishonesty is deceitful and hides itself behind argument and theology. Thus in order for us to know this wondrous feast of unleavened bread, eating and acknowledging Christ alone as all that we are, we must unmask all the tangled web of dishonesty as shown in the New Testament verses on leaven, so that we are truly eating of Christ alone with no trace of anything not-Christ.
The Feast of Trumpets on the first day of the seventh month is the first part of the overall Feast of Tabernacles. It is the calling forth of Israel to prepare for the Day of Atonement on the tenth day of the seventh month. Both Passover and Tabernacles proceed out from the Day of Atonement. The difference between the two is simple. In Passover, we are just being introduced to Christ, though He is all that we are and we are all that He is. In Tabernacles, we know the full meaning of Christ our only life; all shadow of any limitation of Christ in our ignorance is no more. Passover is a limited knowledge of Christ, though He is all. Tabernacles is the faith of the Son of God now being our only way of seeing all things.
Between this letter and my letter on the Feast of Trumpets, I have pencilled in nine letters at present. Then, between Trumpets and the Day of Atonement, I have listed five more. Of truth, I see now, that all of them are about the removal of all leaven from our understanding so that we enter the Day of Atonement, with nothing but Christ in our seeing and in our knowing. Only then will we be able to do the one thing that changes the universe, the one action of the Day of Atonement that changes everything.
You see, Christ is our only life right now, and the only life of all believers in Jesus. Our problem is that we don't know what that means. The Day of Atonement is the full knowledge of what Christ our only life really means with nothing subtracted and nothing added.
But leaven is also one other thing – malice. Yet malice is simply part of dishonesty.
My wife and I are thinking of visiting another church. In discussing this, we talked about what we like about Lakewood and Joel Osteen and what we are wary of that fills too many churches. One is the limitation of Christ. Regardless of his own limited knowledge of Christ, Joel always presents Christ to us without limitation – all that God intends for your life. The other is the presence of an agenda. Most churches I know carry a hidden agenda that is something other than Christ as you in all fullness right now. Joel's only agenda I have seen in seven years of attending Lakewood is to see people rejoice in hope in the victory of Christ through them. Thus I am able to sit in the presence of the Holy Spirit upon the service, in the full acknowledgement of Blood, and see Christ in that anointing beyond what others may or may not see.
We attend Lakewood because we are safe there, safe from the limitation of Christ and safe from the agendas of ministries who preach all kinds of things but really are building their own place above God's people.
Any agenda other than seeing you released into joy in the Christ who fills your heart full entirely free of me is, in truth, malice. Thus malice and dishonesty are two sides of the same thing.
The Pharisees did not present an outward appearance of righteousness because they wanted to please God, but rather, to dominate the people. Dishonesty is always for malice.
God took me through a great difficulty over several months as I finished the last series and began to write this series on Tabernacles. Thus I find my purpose in writing this series slightly altered. Here is the best rendition of my present purpose.
Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure. 1 John 3:1-3
Tabernacles is for everyone – multitudes rushing in. Firstfruits is for opening the door, bringing the experience of the Atonement into the full experience of the church. Firstfruits is only for those who trade their entire life, everything they are or have in this age and the next, for the sake of God's people, all who belong to Jesus, whether they even know it now or not. Firstfruits is for those who lay down their lives for God's precious people, regardless of how dishonest and malevolent they might presently be.
Our hope is that we are just like Jesus before God right now. Thus we purify ourselves to Jesus alone.
The utter importance of the feast of unleavened bread is that we might know that from the moment we are born again, we are free in God to eat and to speak Christ alone. We are free never to say anything about ourselves except Christ.
Christ as us, Christ our only life, has one enemy – pretending. Pretending is dishonesty for the sake of malice or for the sake of fear and shame. Malice is being the accuser; fear and shame is submitting to the accuser. Both are fake only.
Pretending is the only thing Adam ever became, a fantasy, a fiction, wrapping himself in delusion and blaming others for his own problems.
We eat Christ from the very beginning, Christ and nothing else, Christ as I, with no I not Christ.
We keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
That every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. – For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Romans 3
The entrance to the gospel is God's cure for dishonesty.
Any time I see any form or expression of “God expects us to prove that we love Jesus by doing what He says,” I cringe. And that kind of thinking, speaking, and preaching comes in so many different ways. And every time it is said, people say, “Amen.” It sounds so right and true. But always, always, it is the “I” who is expected to become or to do what is righteous.
Establishing their own righteousness.
I have sat under such preaching for years, and I come across it now on a regular basis. You can't be around Christians without hearing them speak some form of “I” not Christ and then hearing everyone else say, “Amen, brother.”
Preachers will stand in front of people and say, “You must prove your love for God by A, B, and C. God says that if you don't do A, B, and C, then you don't love Jesus.” Or they will say, “You must come to death before you will know life; that's God's order.”
Here's the thing. Anyone who says these things comes across as an authority; that is, they appear to their hearers as one who is devoted to God in accomplishing these things.
They are dishonest. All who say anything about “I” being right with God or approaching God or pleasing God are being totally dishonest. Or shall we say, they are lying.
First, they have picked A, B, and C to obey, yes, but they utterly disregard and even preach against obeying D, E, and F. Second, they fail to obey A, B, and C all the time, in fact, they fall short of A, B, and C on a regular basis. And if they do admit it, they present it as an issue of God contending with them to “get it right.” They never arrive at the concept of God telling them to shut up.
And when someone says that we must know dying first before we can know life, just ask them how, exactly, what precise steps do they do to accomplish this “dying” so that now they can be an authority on both dying and living.
How do you die?
You see, no one EVER asks that question – because there is no answer.
That every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
Abandoning my self as a lost cause and calling Christ Jesus my only Self is the only honest Christian life I have ever known. Then, seeing all that I am and all that I experience as God in me reconciling the world to Himself is the most daring and assertive faith I have known, the faith of the Son of God.
. . . they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law (and everything else that is “I” not-Christ) for righteousness to everyone who believes. Romans 10:2-4
Seeking to establish their own rightness, their own approach, their own doing, their own connection to God.
Most are convinced that outward appearance is the only measure of honesty. They do not understand that in our present world, outward appearance is all about fig leaves and tree trunks, trying to be like Christ.
The only honesty is to admit utter and total failure and then to completely and forever give up on your self. That honesty is not the entirety of Christ as our life, but it is essential to placing the “only” into “Christ is our only life.”
Because, you see, there is something else inside the arena of “union with Christ”; there is that which would use “Christ as me” as a defence of self, a self-argument used to place one's self on top of other believers in Jesus. When a person does not KNOW that he or she is a complete failure, that they will never “make it” or measure up or please God, in themselves, then, instead of seeing “Christ as me” as God's wondrous answer to our utter hopelessness, they will see it as a defence of SELF for self. They will see it as God's stamp of approval upon ME self, with little place or room for Jesus personal and now inside their sphere.
In my letter, “Moses and Paul,” I shared of my own experiences as if they were similar to Moses' or Paul's experience. Some, reading that, might think that I am placing “myself” at the level of Moses and Paul. Actually, I am doing the opposite. My desire is to bring Moses and Paul out of the lofty clouds of deification down into the normal, weak, bumbling humanity the same as us who love God and also want to know Him. And I share about myself for one reason, to give you hope that if such an incapable failure of a man as Daniel Yordy can find the desire of his heart in knowing the living God, then you most certainly can as well.
Moses and Paul are no different than you or I, and I am no different than you. We are all failures who find it to be the utter delight of our hearts to abandon ourselves as a lost cause and call Christ Jesus alone our only and very life.
Now here is how we must judge all speaking of relationship with God. (I say it that way to separate such speaking from everyday human conversation.) And we must judge our own speaking as well as the speaking of all others.
Is it “I” not-Christ or is it Christ not-I?
Is the speaker speaking about “I” approaching God or about God in Person filling them full and flowing out in grace and goodness from them?
Is the Person of God, the Person of Christ Jesus filling them full, ever present in their mention of the human, either themselves or others, or is God in Person far away from their words?
Do you find John 14:20 undergirding and shining through everything being said?
If not, then we must separate ourselves from hearing such speaking. And we must cease speaking such ourselves.
James said that the tongue is the rudder that steers the entire ship. We will go in the direction of our speaking.
In an interaction with someone who teaches “Christ as us,” I found in their words to me no thought of being wrong, no honoring of the Person of Jesus, and no speaking Christ concerning me. I found only self-defence and an attempt to determine what was “wrong” with me. When I plead with this one to be real, to be a fellow human-being, I received back words that contained only an effort to “fix my problem,” as if Christ did not even exist.
Why is it essential to our salvation to BE guilty and silent before God?
Why is passing through Romans 7 the only way to get from Romans 6 to Romans 8?
In all the years of hearing “die, brother,” or “you must know dying first before you will ever know life,” I can give this testimony. In every single instance, those words were spoken so that the speaker could be above the hearer, those words were spoken as an assertiveness, a means of dominating me.
But when I think back to those several men I have known in my life that I have shared about before, men who walked with me as an equal, who encouraged Christ in me, men with whom I thrived in the Lord, I remember one prominent thing about them in every way and in every situation.
They were always laying down their lives for me.
Yet not once did I ever hear them insinuate that I submit to them, or yield myself to their ability to “fix” me.
I am speaking of Jimmy, of Abel, of Don, of Amos, and of Rick.
The one who says, “Die, brother,” will never lay down their vision, their ministry, their doings, their “rightness” to yield to those they consider “under” them. Rather, their every word will be a bringing of their hearers into dependence upon themselves or an exaltation of their ability with God in the eyes of their hearers.
Honesty – Dishonesty/Malice.
The Feast of Unleavened Bread.
Let me define what I mean when I say, “I fear God.” Here is what I am really saying. “It is essential to my salvation, to my life, to BE incapable and silent before God.”
When I say, “I fear God,” it is an admission of total failure.
But it is an admission of something else. I am also saying, “I regard God above life itself, and I want nothing else except to be found entirely inside of Him and He inside of me.”
You see, the Love and Desire of my heart has found me, and I speak of myself only to show you how the Love and Desire of your heart has also found you.
And I say, “I fear God,” not to speak of myself, but to place in your own mouth the “I” that is you, that is, Christ.
Let's look at a couple of more things about leaven.
First, notice these words: “A little leaven leavens the whole lump.” Paul's argument is clear, we cannot pretend the keeping of any element of the law, including “keeping” the days of the feasts. If we add one tiny thing from the law to Christ, Christ-and, we eliminate Christ entirely.
If you become circumcised, Christ will profit you nothing. And I testify again to every man who becomes circumcised that he is a debtor to keep the whole law.
Circumcision was the issue with the Galatians, but the law, by its nature, contains so many avenues one can run down, so many substitutes for Christ. We can take anything from the law, including the ten commandments, which Paul calls the ministry of death, and add it as part of our righteousness, Christ-and. But the moment we do, Christ vanishes, and now we are bound by our own hand to keep the entire law to perfection or DIE, as in, be cut-off from God.
Any words, then, that speak out from the concept of approaching God or becoming pleasing to Him, demonstrate living cut-off from God, that is, living in death.
Here are the only words that are true, the only words that are life.
Christ Jesus is my only life. All that He is, I am. All that I am is He.
Speaking those words is eating of Christ, eating the roasted lamb and the unleavened bread and the bitter herbs (I, apart from Christ in Person in me, am a total failure). Speaking those words is the action of faith, and faith is the only thing that pleases God.
Bitter herbs means humbling one's self in the face of others, regarding others in any difficulty or contention, as of higher regard than one's self. (Yet never subjecting one's self to the manipulation of others, the flip side of domination and just as wicked.) Bitter herbs means living in the continual awareness that I have abandoned myself entirely as a lost cause and thus speak Christ my only life in place of any need to be somebody.
Not speaking Christ as one's only life is a demonstration of being cut-off from God in one's knowledge.
Finally, Paul says this: “You truly are unleavened.”
We are; we just are.
Eating of Christ is not something we produce, but something already real and true that we sink into as into a garment, as into the covers of one's bed. We put on, enduo, the Lord Jesus Christ.
Speaking Christ is not “making something happen.” It is nothing more than acknowledging the good things of Christ inside of us.
And then trusting utterly that Jesus is, right now, moving through all that we are in all the circumstance of our lives, proving the will of God upon this earth, reconciling the world to the Father.