On January 13, 1982, Air Florida Flight 90, smashed into the ice covered Potomac River just outside Washington, D.C. With fractured arms and shattered legs, six souls swam past fellow passengers to the surface. When a helicopter arrived lowering a life-line to pull out 46-year-old, Arland Williams Jr., twice he handed the ring on the lifeline to another passenger. When the helicopter returned for the third time to get Arland, hypothermia had claimed him. He had given his life in an unselfish way to save others.
In I Corinthians 5:7-8, the Apostle Paul reminded believers in the Dispensation of Grace about another unselfish sacrifice of life for others. He said, “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.” The Passover Feast was an annual observance initiated by the Lord to commemorate Israel’s deliverance from the cruel bondage of Egypt. In the first observance, a perfect lamb was slain for each family. The blood was to be placed upon the doorposts so the Lord’s angel of death would passover their household without slaying their firstborn. The occupants inside were to consume all of the Lamb and do so with unleavened bread. Leaven was essentially yeast that spread throughout the dough. Even a small amount was effective. The leaven pictured sin. Therefore, at the annual observance, all leaven had to be removed from every Jewish home. Why would Paul tell saints today about the Jewish Passover? He does so reminding them that the Lord Jesus was the ultimate Passover Lamb that every previous sacrifice had pointed to. Our Savior was the perfect, sinless Lamb who sacrificed His life to atone for our sins so that God’s eternal wrath would not fall on us. Then, remembering the sacrifice of Christ for us, Paul urged the sinning saints at Corinth to purge out the leaven-like sinful practices in their lives. Symbolically, they were to “keep the feast” by living apart from “the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth” (I Corinthians 5:8).
Are you grateful enough to your Savior, who willingly laid down His life for you, that you are seeking to purge out sinful practices in your life? Purging sin out of your life demonstrates the “sincerity and truth” Christ longs to see in you.
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