Feast Of Unleavened Bread (HagHaMatzot)
What is the Feast of Unleavened Bread?
- The festival in itself extends over seven days with the first and the last days being high Sabbaths in which no work is done and it is commenced by the Passover memorial and they’d eat cake of an unleavened bread.
- The instruction to observe this feast was given in relation to Passover and is linked to it and is a continuation of it.
- The lord said for 7 days the children of Israel are to eat unleavened bread. This bread, made in a hurry without yeast, represents how the lord brought the Israelites out of Egypt in haste.
- Leaven is also a symbol of our sin, and the false teachings from the Pharisees.
When is the Feast of Unleavened Bread?
- It starts on the 15th of Nisan (March/ April)- the day after Passover.
- It lasts for 7 days (22nd of Nisan) with the 1st and the 7th day to be a holy convocation day to god (the first day being the holy day of Passover).
Remove all the leavened products from the house
- You must remove all products that contain a leavening agent.
- All leavened products must be removed from your property.
- This should be done as preparation before the 14th of Nisan. In our family we remove all leavened products on garbage day before this date. that way there is no leavened products on our property.
- These products are:
- Leavened Bread (bread made with a yeast product that has risen)
- Beer and Grain Alcohol
- Baking Powder and Baking Soda
- Bakers Ammonia
- Sourdough Starter
- The leaven represents sin. Luke 12:1, 1 Corinthians 5:7-8
- Matzah stands for without sin and is a picture of Jesus, the only human without sin.
- Jesus said that the “bread of god is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the word: and that he (Jesus) is the “bread of life” the “bread that came down from heaven”, “the living bread” which a person may eat and not die. John 6:23, 35, 41, 48.
- While leaven is a symbol of sin, the Messiah is “unleavened” or sinless. He conquers the grave with his resurrection because he is not a sinner under the curse of death. Jesus was scourged and pierced at his crucifixion. AS the prophet Isaiah proclaims “by his stripes we are healed”. Isaiah 53:5.
- The Leaven is also a picture of the false teachings of the Pharisees.by removing it from our houses, its like we are cleaning the false teachings from our minds symbolically.
Why does God make me get rid of ALL my leavened products?
- By removing leavened products from your house, it shows your devotion to the plan that God has for you, the same way the Israelites had to leave Egypt in haste and not wait for their bread to rise.
- Once in the wilderness God provided food for them with Manna and Quail. We are to remove the leaven and have faith that God will provide for us whether we can explain how or not.
- Paul also states that we are to remove the bread symbolically representing us removing old false teachings to get new teachings.
- Paul when he spoke to the Corinth, believing the community was tolerant of gross immorality, he compares sin to leaven and commands the congregation at Corinth to clean out the sin from within their midst in the same way the Jewish community removes leaven from their homes during Passover. Just as leaven permeates an entire lump of dough, sinful behavior affects the entire life of an individual and congregation. If the congregation at Corinth did not deal with the wicked behavior in their midst, then this behavior would defile the whole community.
- The “unleavened” person does not have a hidden or secret life.
How to celebrate the Feast of Unleavened Bread?
Step 1 – Clean. Remove all leaven from your house.
- Make this a fun experience by hiding the leavened products throughout the house for children to find in a scavenger hunt.
Step 2 – Cook/ Buy/ Make unleavened bread.
- Since Leavened products need to be removed from the house, Matzah can be consumed as a substitute.
- You can buy Matzah from Manischewitz or you can make it yourself.
- Unleavened Bread Recipe:
- 2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/2 tablespoon salt
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup water
- Place all ingredients in a food processor and process until it forms a ball.
- remove and place on floured surface.
- knead until smooth.
- Wrap in plastic wrap and let rest for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350
- divide dough into 8 sections.
- Dust with flour and flatten each section.
- Then continue to flatten with pasta roller or polling pin. (if using a pasta roller, roll through level one 3 times, then though each subsequent level once, stopping with level 5.) (if using a rolling pin, roll to 1/8 or 1/4 inch thickness.)– tip: lightly dust with flour as necessary to keep from sticking to pasta rollers or rolling in. Cut in half when too long to continue rolling as one piece.
- Place pieces on a baking sheet and immediately place in the oven. Breads will stick to the pan while cooking if they are left there too long.
- Cook for 6 minutes, turn and cook for another 3-5 minutes. Cooking time may take longer if breads are thicker. Remove from pan and cook on a rack.
- Makes 16 pieces.
Step 3 – Search. Start the search party.
Step 4 – Celebrate. Talk about the activities and preparations you made.
Step 5 – Rejoice for 7 days feasting on unleavened bread
No work is to be done
On the 1st and 7th day of the feast of unleavened bread is to be treated as a High Sabbath. No work is to be done on those days with the same rules as the weekly Sabbath (no working at your job, no cleaning, no light a candle etc.)