The Christian Church as Unleavened
1 Corinthians 5:7
Purge out therefore the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, as you are unleavened…

As ye are unleavened. The idea of the Church is of a pure and unadulterated and uncorrupted mass, and every individual member of the Church is under obligation to aid in securing and maintaining the purity. The Church must put out, purge out, and keep out, the very relics of the old leaven. Reference is made in the figure which St. Paul uses to the Jewish custom of searching for leaven, which was probably retained in the apostle's time. "Because Scripture speaks of 'searching Jerusalem with candles' (Zephaniah 1:12), they used to carry out this custom of searching for leaven with great strictness, taking a candle and 'prying into every mouse hole and cranny,' as St. Chrysostom says, so as to collect even the smallest crumb of leavened bread, which was to be placed in a box or some place where a mouse could not get at it."

I. THE CHRISTIAN CALL TO BE UNLEAVENED. "Ye are not called unto uncleanness, but unto holiness." The apostles were especially called to witness to a truth by word of lip; but, while each member was equally called to speak for Christ, the testimony of the Church, as a whole, was to be the testimony of its purity. Its very aim was to be to keep itself separate and free from the evils and defilements of the world. Show how far the modern Church may be regarded as having forgotten the Divine call unto "uncorruptness."


(1) from without, in the attractions of worldly pleasure and success;

(2) from within, by the defection of individuals, and their evil influence, or by the unwatchfulness and neglected spiritual culture of many. When Christians cease to find their joy in God, they easily seek for it in the world and in worldly things.

III. THE CHRISTIAN CARE TO KEEP UNLEAVENED. This care should characterize each for himself, and each for the other. And it should ever be regarded as the great life burden of the Christian and the Church. It must cost constant watchfulness and effort; and he who would be pure must learn how to deal sternly with himself. - R.T.

Parallel Verses
KJV: 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:

WEB: Purge out the old yeast, that you may be a new lump, even as you are unleavened. For indeed Christ, our Passover, has been sacrificed in our place.

The Celebration of the Lord's Supper a Christian Duty
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