Deuteronomy 16:3
Thou shalt eat no leavened bread with it; seven days shalt thou eat unleavened bread therewith, even the bread of affliction; for thou camest forth out of the land of Egypt in haste: that thou mayest remember the day when thou camest forth out of the land of Egypt all the days of thy life.
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16:1-17 The laws for the three yearly feasts are here repeated; that of the Passover, that of the Pentecost, that of Tabernacles; and the general law concerning the people's attendance. Never should a believer forget his low estate of guilt and misery, his deliverance, and the price it cost the Redeemer; that gratitude and joy in the Lord may be mingled with sorrow for sin, and patience under the tribulations in his way to the kingdom of heaven. They must rejoice in their receivings from God, and in their returns of service and sacrifice to him; our duty must be our delight, as well as our enjoyment. If those who were under the law must rejoice before God, much more we that are under the grace of the gospel; which makes it our duty to rejoice evermore, to rejoice in the Lord always. When we rejoice in God ourselves, we should do what we can to assist others also to rejoice in him, by comforting the mourners, and supplying those who are in want. All who make God their joy, may rejoice in hope, for He is faithful that has promised.Sacrifice the passover - "i. e." offer the sacrifices proper to the feast of the Passover, which lasted seven days. Compare a similar use of the word in a general sense in John 18:28. In the latter part of Deuteronomy 16:4 and in the following verses Moses passes, as the context again shows, into the narrower sense of the word Passover.3. seven days shalt thou eat unleavened bread—a sour, unpleasant, unwholesome kind of bread, designed to be a memorial of their Egyptian misery and of the haste with which they departed, not allowing time for their morning dough to ferment. With it, to wit, with the passover, in the sense delivered; or, in it, i.e. during the time of the feast of the passover.

The bread of affliction, i.e. bread which is not usual nor pleasant, but unsavoury and unwholesome, to put thee in mind both of thy miseries endured in Egypt, and of thy hasty coming out of it, which allowed thee no time to leaven or to prepare thy bread.

Thou shalt eat no leavened bread with it,.... With the passover, as the Targum of Jonathan expresses it; that is, with the passover lamb, nor indeed with any of the passover, or peace offerings, as follows; see Exodus 12:8.

seven days shall ye eat unleavened bread therewith; with the passover; this plainly shows, that by the passover in the preceding verse is not meant strictly the passover lamb, for that was eaten at once on the night of the fourteenth of the month, and not seven days running, and therefore must be put for the whole solemnity of the feast, and all the sacrifices of it, both the lamb of the fourteenth, and the Chagigah of the fifteenth, and every of the peace offerings of the rest of the days were to be eaten with unleavened bread:

even the bread of affliction; so called either from the nature of its being heavy and lumpish, not grateful to the taste nor easy of digestion, and was mortifying and afflicting to be obliged to eat of it seven days together; or rather from the use of it, which was, as Jarchi observes, to bring to remembrance the affliction they were afflicted with in Egypt:

for thou camest forth out of the land of Egypt in haste; and had not time to leaven their dough; so that at first they were obliged through necessity to eat unleavened bread, and afterwards by the command of God in remembrance of it; see Exodus 12:33,

that thou mayest remember the day when thou camest forth out of the land of Egypt all the days of thy life; how it was with them then, how they were hurried out with their unleavened dough; and that this might be imprinted on their minds, the master of the family used (p), at the time of the passover, to break a cake of unleavened bread, and say, this is the bread of affliction, &c. or bread of poverty; as it is the way of poor men to have broken bread, so here is broken bread.

(p) Haggadah Shel Pesach, in Seder Tephillot, fol. 242. Maimon. Chametz Umetzah, c. 8. sect. 6.

Thou shalt eat no leavened bread with it; seven days shalt thou eat unleavened bread therewith, even the bread of {c} affliction; for thou camest forth out of the land of Egypt in haste: that thou mayest remember the day when thou camest forth out of the land of Egypt all the days of thy life.

(c) Which signified the affliction which you had in Egypt.

3, 4. See introd. note.

bread of affliction] The affliction of Israel in Egypt, Exodus 3:7; Exodus 4:31, culminating in the haste or trepidation (Driver) with which they ate their last meal there. So P, Exodus 12:11; cp. for the meaning of the word, Deuteronomy 20:3; 1 Samuel 23:26; Isaiah 52:12.

no leaven … neither shall any of the flesh … remain] The two prohibitions are connected because anything fermenting or putrefying was not admissible in sacrifice (W. R. Smith, Rel. Sem. 221 n.). Cp. P, Exodus 12:19.

Verse 3. - Bread of affliction; bread such as is prepared in circumstances of trial and pressure, when there is no time or opportunity for the application of all the means required for the preparation of bread of the better sort. The Israelites had in haste and amid anxiety to prepare the Passover meal on the evening of their flight from Egypt, and so had to omit the leavening of their bread; and this usage they had to observe during the seven days of the festival in subsequent times, to remind them of the oppression the nation had suffered in Egypt, and the circumstances of difficulty and peril amidst which their deliverance had been effected. Deuteronomy 16:3Israel was to make ready the Passover to the Lord in the earing month (see at Exodus 12:2). The precise day is supposed to be known from Exodus 12, as in Exodus 23:15. פּסח עשׂה (to prepare the Passover), which is used primarily to denote the preparation of the paschal lamb for a festal meal, is employed here in a wider signification viz., "to keep the Passover." At this feast they were to slay sheep and oxen to the Lord for a Passover, at the place, etc. In Deuteronomy 16:2, as in Deuteronomy 16:1, the word "Passover" is employed in a broader sense, and includes not only the paschal lamb, but the paschal sacrifices generally, which the Rabbins embrace under the common name of chagiga; not the burnt-offerings and sin-offerings, however, prescribed in Numbers 28:19-26, but all the sacrifices that were slain at the feast of the Passover (i.e., during the seven days of the Mazzoth, which are included under the name of pascha) for the purpose of holding sacrificial meals. This is evident from the expression "of the flock and the herd;" as it was expressly laid down, that only a שׂה, i.e., a yearling animal of the sheep or goats, was to be slain for the paschal meal on the fourteenth of the month in the evening, and an ox was never slaughtered in the place of the lamb. But if any doubt could exist upon this point, it would be completely set aside by Deuteronomy 16:3 : "Thou shalt eat no leavened bread with it: seven days shalt thou eat unleavened bread therewith." As the word "therewith" cannot possibly refer to anything else than the "Passover" in Deuteronomy 16:2, it is distinctly stated that the slaughtering and eating of the Passover was to last seven days, whereas the Passover lamb was to be slain and consumed in the evening of the fourteenth Abib (Exodus 12:10). Moses called the unleavened bread "the bread of affliction," because the Israelites had to leave Egypt in anxious flight (Exodus 12:11) and were therefore unable to leaven the dough (Exodus 12:39), for the purpose of reminding the congregation of the oppression endured in Egypt, and to stir them up to gratitude towards the Lord their deliverer, that they might remember that day as long as they lived. (On the meaning of the Mazzothy, see at Exodus 12:8 and Exodus 12:15.) - On account of the importance of the unleavened bread as a symbolical shadowing forth of the significance of the Passover, as the feast of the renewal and sanctification of the life of Israel, Moses repeats in Deuteronomy 16:4 two of the points in the law of the feast: first of all the one laid down in Exodus 13:7, that no leaven was to be seen in the land during the seven days; and secondly, the one in Exodus 23:18 and Exodus 34:25, that none of the flesh of the paschal lamb was to be left till the next morning, in order that all corruption might be kept at a distance from the paschal food. Leaven, for example, sets the dough in fermentation, from which putrefaction ensues; and in the East, if flesh is kept, it very quickly decomposes. He then once more fixes the time and place for keeping the Passover (the former according to Exodus 12:6 and Leviticus 23:5, etc.), and adds in Deuteronomy 16:7 the express regulation, that not only the slaughtering and sacrificing, but the roasting (see at Exodus 12:9) and eating of the paschal lamb were to take place at the sanctuary, and that the next morning they could turn and go back home. This rule contains a new feature, which Moses prescribes with reference to the keeping of the Passover in the land of Canaan, and by which he modifies the instructions for the first Passover in Egypt, to suit the altered circumstances. In Egypt, when Israel was not yet raised into the nation of Jehovah, and had as yet no sanctuary and no common altar, the different houses necessarily served as altars. But when this necessity was at an end, the slaying and eating of the Passover in the different houses were to cease, and they were both to take place at the sanctuary before the Lord, as was the case with the feast of Passover at Sinai (Numbers 9:1-5). Thus the smearing of the door-posts with the blood was tacitly abolished, since the blood was to be sprinkled upon the altar as sacrificial blood, as it had already been at Sinai. - The expression "to thy tents," for going "home," points to the time when Israel was till dwelling in tents, and had not as yet secured any fixed abodes and houses in Canaan, although this expression was retained at a still later time (e.g., 1 Samuel 13:2; 2 Samuel 19:9, etc.). The going home in the morning after the paschal meal, is not to be understood as signifying a return to their homes in the different towns of the land, but simply, as even Riehm admits, to their homes or lodgings at the place of the sanctuary. How very far Moses was from intending to release the Israelites from the duty of keeping the feast for seven days, is evident from the fact that in Deuteronomy 16:8 he once more enforces the observance of the seven days' feast. The two clauses, "six days thou shalt eat mazzoth," and "on the seventh day shall be azereth (Eng. Ver. 'a solemn assembly') to the Lord thy God," are not placed in antithesis to each other, so as to imply (in contradiction to Deuteronomy 16:3 and Deuteronomy 16:4; Exodus 12:18-19; Exodus 13:6-7; Leviticus 23:6; Numbers 28:17) that the feast of Mazzoth was to last only six days instead of seven; but the seventh day is brought into especial prominence as the azereth of the feast (see at Leviticus 23:36), simply because, in addition to the eating of mazzoth, there was to be an entire abstinence from work, and this particular feature might easily have fallen into neglect at the close of the feast. But just as the eating of mazzoth for seven days is not abolished by the first clause, so the suspension of work on the first day is not abolished by the second clause, any more than in Exodus 13:6 the first day is represented as a working day by the fact that the seventh day is called "a feast to Jehovah."
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