As part of a recent series I was privileged to teach, I was reminded again of the symbolism of leaven as seen in the word of God. It was during my consideration of the feast of unleavened bread that I was brought back to the reality of its significance as it relates to Christ. During the feast of unleavened bread, the key feature was the putting away of leaven out of the sight of the Israelites. This, in type, signified the burial of Christ in which, after putting away sin by the sacrifice of himself on Calvary, His striped body was put out of sight in the tomb.
As I explained to the folks to whom I was speaking at the time, leaven is a corrupting agent. It is fermented dough that when introduced into a pure a lump, grows and spreads until the whole lump is leavened. The transformative properties of leaven literally converts its host into something completely other than what it was originally intended to be. Accordingly, leaven in the Bible is a picture of corruption. For this reason, it is a fitting representation of sin, for when sin entered the human race, it fermented mankind and transformed him into a creature wholly different than what God created him to be.
Further search also reveals that the Bible likens other things to leaven, such as errant doctrine (Matt. 16:12). The teachings of the Pharisees, Sadducees and Herodians in particular are designated as such by the Lord. It was their vanity of tradition and religion that took the pure lump of the law of God and fermented it, transforming it into something God never meant for it to be. The effects were detrimental.
In realizing that the feast of unleavened bread stands as the shadow of Christ who was without spot, uncorrupted by the leaven of iniquity, I was reminded of Isa. 53:9 & I Pet. 2:22.
Isa. 53:9 - …he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.
I Pet. 2:22 – Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:
How impressed I was to see that two issues are testified to in relation to the absence of corruption in Christ. He did no violence/sin; He had no deceit/guile in his mouth. Do you see how the testimony confirms that He is completely unleavened in His person? There was no error in his conduct nor was there as falsity or corruption in the doctrine that came out of His mouth. He, as the perfect Word of God, spoke and did always those things that pleased the Father. There was no leaven in Him!
Therefore, Christ Jesus is the perfect Lamb who was able to offer Himself up to God without spot as my Substitute-Redeemer! He perfected forever that which is to be accepted for my pardon and I can rest in Him because God has made Him the propitiation for my sins! Think on this, friends, and rejoice in the completeness we have in Christ! He is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord (I Cor. 1:30-31).
Published by Joshua Edwards
Joshua Edwards is an ambassador for the Lord Jesus Christ who is dedicated the to the communication of sound doctrine as set forth in the pages of God's word. He desires to have all men to be saved by believing the gospel of the grace of God, and thereafter to come unto the knowledge of the truth by establishment in the preaching of Jesus Christ according to the revelation of the mystery (Romans 16:25).