THE CANDLE OF THE LORD IS SEARCHING FOR LEAVEN IN OUR HEARTS
It was a tradition of the Jews for the father of the household to light a candle, and with his children, he would search his house for hidden leaven in preparation for Passover.
“Seven days shall there be no leaven found in your houses: 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“. Exodus 12:19
The apostle Paul told the Corinthian Church that all the things that happened to ancient Israel were examples. They have been written so that every generation can learn from them. So, let us learn some spiritual lessons from leaven. Leaven is a substance that produces fermentation --especially in dough; but it is any influence which , working silently , and strongly causes changes.
The scriptures first mention leaven in the history of Israel at the time when God delivered them from their bondage to Pharaoh. The descendants of Abraham had been mistreated and were slaves in Egypt for four hundred years. The LORD saw their affliction, heard their cry, and understood their sorrow --and the cup of iniquity was full in the land of Canaan. The LORD’s time to deliver his people had come.
“Israel is my son” saith the Lord; and Pharaoh was told to “Let my son go, that he may serve me”
When the people heard the word of the LORD, and saw signs that He was calling them to come out of Egypt and serve Him --they bowed their heads and worshipped. They were soon to learn that only the power of God can bring deliverance from bondage. They wanted to go the three days journey into the desert and sacrifice unto the Lord according to His word --But, Pharaoh, the ruler of Egypt was strong and would not let them go until after the plagues of Egypt ended the night of Passover when the firstborn of Egypt were killed.
“And the Egyptians were urgent upon the people, that they might send them out of the land in haste; for they said, We be all dead men. And the people took their dough before it was leavened, their kneadingtroughs being bound up in their clothes upon their shoulders” Exodus 12:33-34
Faith in Jesus Christ, “The Lamb of God that taketh away the sins of the world“ and repentance are gifts from The Almighty God. When we truly repent, we make a covenant with God to serve and obey Him --no matter what the cost. Then, we must become as little children. Little children, with pure hearts, who search their lives and purge them of everything that the light from God’s word* exposes as leaven.
The Covenant that was established by the blood of Jesus Christ still requires that sin and corruption that leaven represents must be purged. Here, the apostle Paul refers to a fornicator in the assembly as leaven that must be cast out.:
“Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump? 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.”
I Corinthians 5:6-8
As we learned before, leaven represents any influence which , working silently , and strongly causes changes. Here, Jesus warned his disciples of the leavening influence of hypocritical teachers who set aside the Commandments of God to keep their traditions:
“ … Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.” Matthew 16:6
When we read Matthew 16:12 and Luke 12:1, we see that Jesus clearly compares false teaching and hypocrisy with leaven:
“Then understood they how that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of THE DOCTRINE of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.” Matthew 16:12:
“ … He began to say unto his disciples first of all, Beware ye of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.” Luke 12:1
God calls his people out of the bondage of their past to become the Sons of God. That promised generation serves God; keeps the Commandments of God; and has pure faith that works by love. Anything else is hypocrisy!
Psalms 119:105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.
From G1506; clearness, that is, (by implication) purity (figuratively): - sincerity.gen