Paul has just written about the sacred holiday called the Passover. To prepare for the Passover, people remove all the yeast from their homes. During that holiday, they only eat bread that contains no yeast.
Yeast is the substance that makes bread rise. Here, however, Paul uses it as a word-picture. He explains what he means. By ‘yeast’, he means evil acts and attitudes of hate. Christians should not hate people, and they should not do evil things. They must remove wrong thoughts from their minds, and wrong behaviour from their lives. Those wrong things belonged to their former lives, before they became Christians.
Bread that contains no yeast is called unleavened bread. Paul also uses this as a word-picture. He means sincere and true attitudes. Christians must replace evil thoughts with sincere and true thoughts. They must replace wrong behaviour with actions that are right and good.
When people remove yeast from their homes for the Passover, they do it for a sacred purpose. They want the Passover to be a holiday that God approves of. In the same manner, Christians remove those wrong things from their lives for a sacred purpose. They want to live in the manner that God approves of. God does not approve of evil acts or attitudes of hate. God approves of what is sincere and true.
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© 2014, Keith Simons.