First Day of Unleavened Bread

Attributes of Jesus Christ

(Sermon Notes)  By Warren Zehrung  4/16/2022


Today is the First Day of Unleavened Bread, April 16, 2022.  In today’s sermon we will be looking at the Life of Jesus Christ and His attributes.  We recently established that the attributes of Jesus Christ are the attributes of God the Father also, because Jesus said:

John 14:9 … he that hath seen me hath seen the Father;

God the Father and Jesus Christ share all the same attributes and characteristics.  In this Offertory portion of today’s sermon we will look at God’s attribute of generosity.  And let’s understand that any true gift is an act of personal sacrifice.  We giveup something that another may have it.  That is a sacrifice.  God is generous.  He is magnanimous, benevolent, and He is giving…  Here in Philippians 2:5 is one of the many places we are commanded to put on the attributes of Jesus Christ.

Philippians 2:5  Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: 

Do we have the mind of Jesus Christ?  Jesus Christ is generous.  He gave His Life for us.  We have heard that phrase so often that it has lost its edge.  “Jesus Christ gave His Life for us.”

But by the time we finish looking at the many attributes of Jesus Christ in today’s sermon I hope we will have a better idea of what it means — Jesus Christ gave His Life for us.  That was Jesus’ ultimate act of generosity that He presents to us.  1Peter 2:21 [tells us that] …we should follow His steps.  Let’s look briefly at the generosity of Jesus’ Father – our Father.

John 3:16  For God [the Father] so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 

John 3:17  [The Father gave His only Son, Jesus] … that the entire world through Him might be saved. 

That too, is so easy to say – and yet, so hard to grasp.  “God the Father gave His only Son!”  Brethren, last night while we were enjoying our meal on the Night To Be Much Observed, Jesus was being laid in His grave – DEAD.

While we were with friends last night celebrating the beginning of the Days of Unleavened Bread, God the Father was all alone that night after His Son, Jesus Christ died on Passover afternoon.  For the first time in all eternity – God the Father was all alone.  For all intents and purposes, God the Father was without the fellowship of His Son for the very first time ever!

Not only was the giving of His Son the greatest gift ever—it was also the greatest sacrifice ever.  Today we are speaking of putting sin out of our lives, and putting on the attributes of Jesus Christ.  Jesus was dead in His grave on the First Day of Unleavened Bread—an High Day.

John 19:31  The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the Sabbath day, (for that Sabbath day was an High Day,) [The First Day of Unleavened Bread] besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away.

Had Jesus sinned only once in His life, He would have died for His own sins, and not ours.  He would not have been raised to life by the inestimable power of God—but would have remained eternally dead—and the world would have ceased to exist forever (Ephesians 1:17-21)

Hebrews 1:3  [Jesus]… upholds the entire universe by the word of His power.

Had Jesus sinned once in His life, God the Father would be all alone forever more.  That is how much God the Father GAVE.  That is the highest example of generosity there is.  Do we endeavor to be generous as God is generous?

We will have a short Musical interlude while we present our Offertory gift.

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End of Offertory—Begin Sermon—Attributes of Jesus Christ

The Feast of Passover pictures Jesus Christ who is the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth – dying for our sins.  The Feast of Unleavened Bread shows us that simply accepting Jesus’ sacrifice to pay for our sins is not enough. 

These days of Unleavened Bread picture coming out of sin – which dates back to the Old Covenant, and putting on the attributes of Jesus Christ – which is possible under the New Covenant.

Leaven is often used in the Bible as a type of sin.  God instructed the Israelites to put all leaven bread out of their homes during the seven days of the Feast of Unleavened Bread (Exodus 12:15-19; 13:7). 

The Feast of Unleavened Bread symbolizes putting all sin out of our lives.  Unleavened bread contains no leavening agent, and therefore typifies sin-less-ness.  God commands His people to eat unleavened bread during the Feast of Unleavened Bread (Exodus 12:15, 19-20; Leviticus 23:6). 

This act of getting rid of leavened products symbolizes putting on righteousness and the attributes of Jesus Christ.

These lessons are even more important for the New Testament Church than they were for ancient Israel.  Upon repentance and baptism, Jesus’ sacrifice blots out all past sins. 

Jesus died so that we would not have to pay our penalty of eternal death (Romans 6:23).  We are to “go and sin no more,” and strive to obey God’s Law by “unleavening” our lives — by “deleavening” our lives.

Paul told the Corinthian Church members, who were keeping the Feast of Unleavened Bread, to put out spiritual leaven (sin), just as they had already put out all physical leaven products in preparation for the Feast.  They were to keep the Feast not only with real flat unleavened bread, but also with the spiritually “unleavened” attitude of sincerity and truth that we see expressed by Jesus Christ.

In order for us to become Spirit-born members of God’s Family in the resurrection, we must prove that we will obey God here and now by striving to put the spiritual leaven of sin out of our lives and keep it out.  Paul said that we are to lay aside every sin that so easily besets us – striving against sin (Hebrews 12:1, 4).

You may wish to make a list of some of Jesus’ attributes as we continue in today’s sermon.  The first attribute that we have seen is God’s generous nature.

Historically, last evening, Jesus’ dead body was placed in His tomb for the first of three days and nights.  Jesus died at 3:00 pm yesterday on Passover day.  Today is a Double-Sabbath.  It is a regular Sabbath Day, and it is a High Day.  That happens occasionally.

We are speaking of the attributes of Jesus Christ:

Jesus was humble:

Philippians 2:6  [Jesus] Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 

Jesus is God – seated at the right hand of God – equal with God.  Jesus was equal with God before the earth was created and existed.  Jesus was glorious before the earth was created and existed.

Remember how Jesus prayed:

John 17:5  And now, O Father, glorify you me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world existed. 

Philippians 2:7  But [Jesus] made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: 

Jesus served:  That was one of His attributes.

Then we find that humility was one of His attributes.

Philippians 2:8  And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. 

Obedient to His Father was one of Christ’s many attributes.

As we put sin out of our lives—represented by these days of Unleavened Bread—we rid ourselves of pride, conceit, arrogance, self-importance, and superiority seek to have the humility of Jesus.

If we think that pride, conceit, arrogance, self-importance, and superiority are of no concern to us – that they do not apply to us in our human frames – then, we have not looked close enough in examining ourselves.

Christ’s death, pictured by the Passover, was necessary to pay the penalty of our past sins, and to reconcile us to the Father.  But Christ’s death alone will not save us!

The entire Catholic and Protestant religious world – which is celebrating the Pagan’s Easter festival with its rabbits, eggs and chocolate tomorrow, believes that Jesus died for their sins.  They believe Jesus rose on Sunday morning – under His own power (Ephesians 1:17-21).  That so called “belief” that they profess is not a truly Christian belief.  That kind of accepting Jesus’ sacrifice to pay for sins is not enough.  Think, for a moment, if Jesus Christ had died but not been resurrected by His Father, would His death alone make eternal life possible for us?   No!

Accepting Christ’s sacrifice, as we did at our baptism, and then again at the Passover service – evening before last – is only the first step in God’s Plan for bringing humans into His Divine Family.

Brethren, did we come away from that Passover service with the firm resolve to have Christ’s loving attributes as our goal in life?  Did we resolve at Passover, with God’s help, to have mastery over our human nature?  Jesus and Paul sought self-mastery.

1Corinthians 9:25  Every man that strives for the mastery [of himself] is temperate in all things.  Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible [eternal life]. 

We see Paul’s example in:

1Corinthians 9:27  But I keep my body under control, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway. 

When Paul says that he keeps his body under control – he includes all of his thoughts, hopes, desires and actions.  They all must conform with God’s way of Life.  Brethren, what must we do once our past sins have been covered by the shed blood of Christ?  The answer is to eradicate those sins all together from our lives – forever more.  No excuses!

We must endeavor to cease sinning by putting on the attributes Jesus Christ exhibited.  After repenting of our sins and being forgiven by God, we must strive to come out of sin completely, just as Israel came out of Egypt, a type of sin (Hebrews 11:25-26). 

True Christians continually strive to rid sin from their lives, and fill that remaining void with the quality of life Jesus lived.  For your list of Christ’s attributes, here are a few Godly attributes:

Compassion for others.

Mercy for all who need it.

Tender loving kindness for all.

Those are some of the attributes Jesus displayed.  Jesus began His self-mastery as a child.

Luke 2:40  The child [Jesus] grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon Him. 

Wisdom and obedience are attributes Jesus displayed.  Did you know that Jesus was still growing in character and obedience to His father until the day He died?  We can always do better — much better!  Jesus was still building on His relationship with His Father until the end:

Hebrews 5:8  Though He [Jesus] were a Son, yet learned He obedience by the things which He suffered; [until the very end]

Jesus never sinned — but we do.  We all have sins that so easily beset us – Temper, pride, lust, envy, laziness, self-sufficiency…  We are told in:

Hebrews 12:1  Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us,

These days of Unleavened Bread teach us to put away sin – and go on to perfection (Hebrews 6:1).

The wisdom of God is an attribute that we work on our entire lives.  When we were small and growing up we would stand back-to-back with another child and ask, “Who is the tallest?”  But when we grew up we learned not to compare ourselves to one another – but only to Christ Himself.

2Corinthians 10:12  For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise. 

2Corinthians 10:13   We, however, will not boast beyond proper limits, but will confine our boasting to the sphere of service God Himself has assigned to us, a sphere that also includes you.

Paul is reminding us that we have to be careful not to get too big for our britches.  So, to whom shall we compare ourselves?  How do we know when have we grown spiritually enough?  We find the answer here:

Ephesians 4:13  Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ: 

Who among us is a perfect man?  It should be evident to us that we all have a good way to grow – in putting on the attributes of Jesus.

Here are a few more attributes for our list.

Patience, Love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance—all of the fruit of God’s spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). 

Are we fair, courteous and respectful to all, as Jesus was?

A major attribute of Christ is His forgiveness – that is one we can all work on!  God is right now in the process of creating holy, righteous, perfect spiritual character in those whom He has called into the Body of Christ—His Church.

Man is being created in the character-image of God Almighty.  How does that spiritual creation occur in us?

The Ten Commandments describe God’s nature and character:

Following in the steps of Christ, as we saw in 1Peter 2:21, and keeping all His words and Law are absolutely necessary for spiritual character growth.  We must obey God, allowing Him to mold His character in us while we are still flesh and blood.

Romans 7:12  Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good. 

Romans 8:4  That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit

Romans 8:5  For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. 

Romans 8:6  For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. 

Romans 8:14  For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. 

These days of Unleavened Bread teach us to come out of the world’s ways, and the things of the flesh, to become spiritually minded.  Once we have repented of our sins and been forgiven by God, Our Christian duty is to come completely out of sin—forsake all sin!  Come out of Egypt entirely – come out of sin.

Revelation 18:4  …Come out of her [Egypt and Babylon], my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. 

In Biblical terminology, all things that are not of God are, “unclean things.”

2Corinthians 6:17  Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, 

2Corinthians 6:18  And [I] will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty (1John 3:2). 

The Feast of Unleavened Bread pictures how we go about that difficult process of not touching the unclean thing.  We must be striving to come out of all sin.  That is our Christian duty, with Christ’s help, in God’s Plan of eternal salvation.

Jesus Christ, God of the Old Testament, instituted the second annual festival – the Feast of Unleavened Bread.  The observance of this Feast impresses upon us that we must do our part, to keep the sins Jesus covered with His shed blood, out of our lives altogether.

Jesus died for us – that our sins be covered by His shed blood.  For us to take that lightly would result in our spiritual death.

Hebrews 10:26  For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remains no more sacrifice for sins, 

Hebrew 10:27  But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries. 

Revelation 20:10  … cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. 

Jesus is not going to die a second time in order to cover our sins a second time.  This is a most serious proposition!  It is deadly serious.

We find in 1Corinthians 5 that leaven is a symbol for sin.

1Corinthians 5:7  Purge out therefore the old leaven [sin—malice and wickedness], that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened.  For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us: 

1Corinthians 5:8  Therefore let us keep the Feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

We are to become Righteous as God is Righteous.  These days of Unleavened Bread picture – coming out of sin – which dates back to the Old Covenant, and putting on the attributes of Jesus Christ – which is a New Covenant doctrine.  We must endeavor to cease sinning, and become like our Savior Jesus.

After repenting of our sins and being forgiven by God, we must strive to come out of sin completely, just as Israel came out of Egypt, which is a type of sin.  True Christians continually strive to rid sin from their lives.

What is going to replace the void left in our lives where sin has been removed?  The answer is the attributes that Jesus manifested must fill our lives.

Yes, Israel left Egypt and headed into the wilderness…  We have come out of the world – but where does that leave us?

God’s Feast of Unleavened Bread pictures this part of His Plan for mankind – coming out of sin and taking on the righteous of Christ (Romans 4:11, 2Corinthians 5:21). 

During these seven days of Unleavened Bread, let’s renew our resolve to live in harmony with God’s Law, and rededicate our lives to continual spiritual growth and overcoming. 

2Corinthians 5:18  God has reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ.

2Corinthians 5:18  … and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; 

2Corinthians 5:19  To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. 

2Corinthians 5:20  Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. 

2Corinthians 5:21  For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. 

Verse 18 through 21 are the key verses that explain how this reconciliation with the Father is possible.  When Jesus took upon Himself all of our sins at His crucifixion, He became Sin (in our stead) – the total sin offering. 

Isaiah 59:2  Your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid His face from you, that He will not hear. 

Because no sin can come into God’s presence, God the Father had to turn His face and abandon Jesus to die on the cross.  Jesus cried out with a loud voice – describing the rejection:

Matthew 27:46  “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” 

Jesus could not have died if God the Father had been with Him!  God the Father left Jesus alone on the cross to die for us.  God the Father gave up His son for us!

The Father forsook Jesus because Jesus had become Sin in our stead.  Jesus, who never sinned, paid the death penalty in our place, substituting His death for ours.  His death substitutes for our well-deserved death, which we earned through sin. 

Let’s notice the double-substitutionary act of God: 

Jesus was sacrificed in our stead, and we in turn have His righteousness imputed to us.   In the same way that God made Jesus to be Sin, He has made us to be Righteous.  God in turn, substitutes the righteousness of Jesus to us! 

God the Father made Jesus Christ, who never sinned, to be sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.  Jesus took on our sin, so that we might put on His Righteousness – all of His attributes.

2Corinthians 5:21  He [God the Father] hath made Him [Jesus] to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.

The observance of this seven-day Feast of Unleavened Bread teaches us that we must put on Christ’s righteousness and attributes, and strive not to return to the sins He paid for with His shed blood. 

How does this – becoming righteous – take place?  The eating of unleavened bread and the observance of this seven-day Feast teaches us that we must put on Christ’s attributes and righteousness—and strive not to return to the sins Jesus paid for with His shed blood.


END:  Attributes of Jesus Christ