The objective of this file is to briefly discuss the use of leavened bread in the Eucharist the the Orthodox Church. This is not necessarily a polemical work, and I have actually no on purpose of pointing out other practices and their merits or shortcomings. I will certainly say, from the very beginning, that those who become fixated with routine at the price of the content of the Gospel have actually condemned themselves. Any type of rite that distorts the Gospel is plainly evil, yet so also is the obsession v a exactly rite, because such a compulsion is a manifestation the deep spirituality rot. While ritual should carry joy, since it speak of the Gospel, our biggest joy have to be in acting out the Gospel towards those around us. We have actually not been referred to as to simply attend services, but to repent, convert and serve others.

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First, let’s discuss the nature the leaven. That is another word for yeast, a naturally occurring plant. In ancient times, they didn’t understand that. What they did know is the if you take it flour and also water, kneaded it well and also left it in a cool place for a long time, the dough would certainly rise. They additionally knew that this procedure would rate up if you conserved a little dough each time you baked to include to your following batch. This make reservation is now called a ‘starter.’ It was a good way to keep yeast the made great bread, versus leaving the dough out every night in hope the it would record a an excellent wild yeast matches a negative one. When the yeast gets into the lump, it diffusion throughout the lump there is no noticeably changing its color. Yeast is both invisible and also yet visible, since it does change the shape and texture that the dough.


If friend keep adding flour and also water to the same small lump the dough, the dough will become sour with the waste commodities of the yeast. This is just how we obtain ‘sourdough’ bread. The sourness comes v the yeast continuing to be in the bread a lengthy time.

So, we deserve to see the yeast bread requires a the majority of work and also reliance ~ above our previous bread making. Making unleavened bread is much easier: once the flour and also water are mixed, the bread is ready to bake in a short time. Over there is no ‘starter’ indigenous yesterday, so unleavened bread has actually no past.

We have the right to see the various symbolism that an old writer might use from bread baking to represent particular concepts: leavening to represent a connection with the past, a flavoring when it becomes old, a force that invisibly spreads, a adjust that is additionally unseen, complexity, activity/festivity and involves labor. Dough there is no leaven to represent haste, a break v the past, an lack of extra flavor, simplicity, inactivity, powerlessness and also a lack of labor.

Now that we have actually briefly discussed the feasible symbols the one can get from leavened and unleavened bread, let’s view if the bibles use any type of of them. The an initial mentioning of leaven appears in Exodus 12-13. The is in commemoration that Israel’s Exodus that the ‘feast’ that Unleavened Bread is instituted. I have put ‘feast’ in quotations due to the fact that this word walk not median ‘merrymaking.’ that is no a feast in the feeling that over there is celebration, but rather commemoration of the work-related of the Lord:

And Moses said unto the people, mental this day, in i beg your pardon ye come out from Egypt, the end of the residence of bondage; for by toughness of hand the LORD lugged you the end from this place: over there shall no leavened bread be eaten. Ex 13:3Unleavened bread shall be consumed seven days; and there chandelier no leavened bread it is in seen through thee, neither shall over there be leaven seen with thee in all thy quarters. 8 and thou shalt shew thy boy in the day, saying, This is done since of the which the mr did depend me as soon as I come forth out of Egypt. - Ex 13: 7

It is the lord who lugged Israel the end of Egypt, not a job-related of the people. Come remember this castle eat unleavened bread together a price of your powerlessness. They additionally ate the unleavened bread since they left Egyptin a rush:

And they small unleavened cakes that the dough i m sorry they lugged forth out of Egypt, for it was not leavened; due to the fact that they to be thrust the end of Egypt, and could no tarry, neither had actually they prepared for themselves any kind of victual. - Ex 12:39

The Passover, i m sorry is consumed with bitterness herbs, is no in any kind of sense a feast or celebration, yet rather a ceremonial recollection of the strength of God. Unleavened bread is also referred to as the ‘bread of affliction’ in De 16:3, recalling the haste in i beg your pardon Israel fled Egypt. This haste that the trip was important: that revealed the the people had no plotted it but that God walk it all on His own. They also remember the affliction they endured in the soil of the Egyptians.

It is also important come remember the unleavened bread was also mandated only for the seven days the the Passover (Ex 12:15). It is no an unknown commandment, but one limited to simply this certain commemoration.

It was additionally specified the leavened bread was practically never come be associated with sacrifices (c.f. Ex 29:23, Le 8, Nu 6:15-19). Over there is only one time when leavened bread was offered, to represent the thanksgiving the the people:

Besides the cakes, the shall market for his supplying leavened bread through the sacrifice the thanksgiving the his peace offerings. - Le 7: 13

Ye shall lug out of her habitations two wave loaves of two tenth deals: they shall it is in of fine flour; they shall it is in baken through leaven; they room the firstfruits depend the LORD. - Le 23:17

Leaven hence represents the works of the people, i beg your pardon they offer to God v thanksgiving.While the Septuagint Greek message does no use the word eucharist come characterize this thanksgiving, there is clearly a subject connection between this sacrifical thanksgiving and also the one us make every Sunday.

On the other hand, the connection of unleavened bread come sacrifice reflects the penitential perspective the people are supposed to have towards the sacrifice and the remembrance that forgiveness is the Lord’s, rather than a job-related of your own.

In the Gospels, the word ‘unleavened’ is only supplied in referral to the ‘days of unleavened bread’ (Mt 26:18, Mk 14:1 & 14:12, Lk 22:1 & 22:7, Ac 12:3 & 20:6). Never ever does the new Testament admonish human being to eat unleavened bread, no one does that specify the Christ or anyone else did so other than what was Lawful according to the season.

As because that leaven and leavened bread, that is provided two means in the Gospels. The an initial is to denote the strength of the Kingdom the Heaven.

Another parable spake he depend them; The kingdom of sky is favor unto leaven, i beg your pardon a woman took, and hid in three steps of meal, it rotates the whole was leavened. - Mt 13:33

And again he said, Whereunto shall ns liken the kingdom of God? the is like leaven, i m sorry a woman took and hid in three measures of meal, till the whole was leavened. -Lk 13:20-21

The Kingdom spreads favor yeast! Think of it: there is no outside readjust when one repents and becomes a Christian, yet it somehow alters not just individuals but the entire world. We deserve to now look earlier on background to see how Christianity readjusted so countless people and see the truth here.

The second way that the Gospels use leaven is symbolic that the doctrines the the Pharisees. These doctrines cause false works and eventually condemnation. The likening to leaven expose the strength of attraction in the outwards acts of piety by the Pharisees, miscellaneous St. Paul will certainly struggle against later.

Then Jesus stated unto them, take heed and beware of the leaven the the Pharisees and of the Sadducees. And they reasoned among themselves, saying, it is since we have taken no bread. Which as soon as Jesus perceived, he stated unto them, O ye of tiny faith, why reason ye among yourselves, because ye have carried no bread? do ye no yet understand, neither remember the 5 loaves the the five thousand, and how plenty of baskets ye took up? no the seven loaves that the 4 thousand, and how many baskets ye take it up? exactly how is it that ye execute not know that ns spake it no to you worrying bread, the ye must beware the the leaven the the Pharisees and also of the Sadducees? Then understood they exactly how that he bade them not beware that the leaven of bread, however of the doctrine of the Pharisees and also of the Sadducees. - Mt 16:6-12

Now the disciples had actually forgotten to take bread, neither had actually they in the ship v them an ext than one loaf. And also he charged them, saying, take it heed, beware of the leaven that the Pharisees, and of the leaven that Herod. And also they reasoned amongst themselves, saying, it is since we have no bread. And also when Jesus knew it, that saith unto them, Why reason ye, because ye have actually no bread? awareness ye no yet, neither understand? have ye your heart however hardened? having actually eyes, see ye not? and having ears, hear ye not? and do ye not remember? once I brake the 5 loaves among five thousand, how countless baskets complete of fragments took ye up? they say depend him, Twelve. And also when the seven amongst four thousand, how numerous baskets full of pieces took ye up? and they said, Seven. And he claimed unto them, just how is it the ye do not understand? - Mk 8:14-21

In the typical time, once there were gathered together an innumerable multitude the people, insomuch the they trode one ~ above another, he began to say unto his disciples first of all, Beware ye the the leaven the the Pharisees, i beg your pardon is hypocrisy. - Lk 12:1

The quote from Matthew 16:6-12 is the most strident in warning people not to take this symbolism the leaven too literally. Once speaking that leaven, that is not trying to make a point around bread. If us think earlier to what leavening might mean, it brings up a whole spectrum of native pictures: the leaven the the Pharisees is old and therefore ‘sourdough,’ it has actually spread transparent the Jewish community, that is complex, it is ‘puffed up,’ that is a good deal the work, etc.

This symbolism the leaven as the Pharisees" functions fits v what St. Paul composed to the Corinthians:

It is reported typically that there is fornication amongst you, and such fornication together is not so lot as named among the Gentiles, the one should have actually his father"s wife. And also ye space puffed up, and also have not fairly mourned, the he that hath done this deed can be taken away from amongst you. For i verily, as lacking in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, together though i were present, worrying him the hath so excellent this deed, In the name of our mr Jesus Christ, as soon as ye are gathered together, and also my spirit, with the power of our lord Jesus Christ, To provide such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit might be conserved in the job of the mr Jesus. Her glorying is not good. Understand ye no that a tiny leaven leaveneth the entirety lump? Purge out therefore the old leaven, the ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed because that us: as such let us store the feast, not through old leaven, neither v the leaven that malice and also wickedness; however with the unleavened bread that sincerity and truth. I composed unto girlfriend in one epistle not to agency with fornicators: Yet not altogether v the fornicators that this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then need to ye needs go out of the world. But now I have actually written unto you not to keep company, if any man the is referred to as a brothers be a fornicator, or covetous, or one idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or one extortioner; with such one one no no to eat. For what have actually I to do to judge them also that space without? perform not ye referee them that are within? however them that room without God judgeth. Because of this put away from among yourselves that wicked person. - 1 Co 5:1-13

Here, St. Paul urges them to placed away the leaven that was their old ways. They have become ‘puffed up’ with ungodly pride, and also have even permitted members to carry on as they were prior to conversion in damaging sins. Prefer Israel, they are being referred to as to put aside the old ‘sour’ leaven that Egypt and start over. Notification that St. Paul is speak in the negative, which is why that is invoking the unleavened image. The is questioning them to fast from wickedness and also remember the be oppressive of their sinful past, simply as Israel is dubbed to do in the Passover.

St. Paul supplies the same leaven image Christ supplied in his parables versus the Pharisees when addressing troubles in Galatia:

Stand fast as such in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made united state free, and also be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. Behold, ns Paul say depend you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. For i testify again come every male that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to carry out the whole law. Christ is end up being of no impact unto you, whosoever the you room justified through the law; ye are fallen indigenous grace. Because that we v the heart wait because that the expect of righteousness by faith. Because that in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any kind of thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith i m sorry worketh by love. Ye did run well; that did hinder you the ye need to not follow the truth? This persuasion cometh no of him that calleth you. A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump. I have actually confidence in you through the Lord, the ye will be none otherwise minded: yet he that troubleth girlfriend shall bear his judgment, whosoever he be. - Galatians 5:1-10

It have to be apparent that leaven is a powerful image, and also its hopeful or an adverse connotations are completely dependent top top context. Many of the holy Fathers made great use that leaven in the scriptures to explain the teachings the the Church.

As Christians, we do not need to eat unleavened bread as a form of piety:

The new law calls for you to store perpetual sabbath, and also you, due to the fact that you room idle for one day, mean you room pious, no discerning why this has actually been commanded you: and also if you eat unleavened bread, you speak the will certainly of God has been fulfilled. The lord our God does no take pleasure in such observances.-St. Justin, Dialog v Trypho 12

While ours Lord regulates us to pray, fast and give alms, St. Justin condemns the Jews for thinking that together actions alone you re welcome God. Here, the saint is requiring human being to mental the factor for the observances and also live them daily rather than as just part of a schedule. Christians are not to fall into the deception that specific practices, if done perfectly, space somehow meritorious:

The apostle ordained, that "we should not judge any kind of one in respect come meat or drink, or in regard come a feast day, or the new moons, or the sabbaths." Whence climate these contentions? whence this schisms? We store the feast, but in the leaven the malice and also wickedness, cutting in pieces the Church that God; and we maintain what belongs come its exterior, that us may actors away these better things, faith and also love. We have heard native the prophetic words the these feasts and also fasts room displeasing come the Lord.-St. Irenaeus, Fragment 38

Instead, the saints are constantly calling united state to put aside our old ways just like old leaven and also start anew. Yet we room not referred to as to stay unleavened (i.e., weak, inactive) yet to take it up brand-new and godly activities:

Lay aside, therefore, the evil, the old, the sour leaven, and be ye changed into the brand-new leaven, i m sorry is Jesus Christ.-St. Ignatius, Magnesians 10

For this is the symbolic definition of unleavened bread, the you perform not walk the old deeds of evil leaven. Yet you have interpreted all things in a carnal sense, and also you intend it to it is in piety if you carry out such things, while your souls are filled v deceit, and, in short, with every wickedness. Accordingly, also, after ~ the seven days of eat unleavened bread, God commanded them come mingle new leaven, the is, the power of other works, and also not the imitation of the old and also evil works.-St. Justin Martyr, Dialog v Trypho, ch. 14

"Hear at least what Christ saith come his disciples, "The Kingdom of sky is prefer unto a woman that took leaven and also hid that in three steps of meal." So that the righteous have actually the power of leaven, in order that they might transfer the wicked come their very own manner of conduct. But the righteous room few, for the leaven is small. Yet the smallness in no means injures the lump, but that tiny quantity counter the whole of the enjoy the meal to chin by means of the power inherent in it. So appropriately the power also of the righteous has actually its pressure not in the magnitude of their number, however in the elegant of the Spirit. There were twelve Apostles. Dost thou see how small is the leaven? The whole civilization was in unbelief. Dost thou check out how good is the lump? yet those twelve rotate the whole people to themselves. The leaven and the lump had actually the same nature however not the same manner of conduct. On this account he left the evil in the midst of the good, that due to the fact that they room of the exact same nature together the righteous castle may also become the the same purpose.."-St. John Chrysostom, Homily 3 ~ above Demons , sect. 2 "And this is the reason why He dubbed you leaven: because that leaven likewise does not leaven itself, but, tiny though it is, the affects the entirety lump however big it might be. So also do ye: back ye are couple of in number, however be ye countless and an effective in faith, and also in zeal towards God. Together then the leaven is not weak ~ above account of its littleness, but prevails fan to its inherent heat, and also the force of its herbal quality for this reason ye likewise will be able to bring ago a far larger number than yourselves, if friend will, to the same degree of zeal as your own."-St. Man Chrysostom, To Those Who had Not attend the Assembly , sect. 2

So, we view that the divine Fathers observed both positive and also negative an interpretation in leaven. We should then asking ourselves: when we memory the Eucharist, shouldn"t we use leavened bread? Seeing that the Fathers see nothing evil in leavened bread itself, our an initial task should be to examine the Eucharistic company itself.

In the company of Proskomide, the priest blesses it and also says, “In remembrance of our Lord and God and Savior, Jesus Christ.” We should then ask, was Christ not full of the Kingdom that Heaven? to be He not complete of the heart and an excellent works come which the Fathers liken leaven? it does not appear entirely inappropriate the we need to commemorate the body of Christ v leavened bread, so lengthy as the is no sourdough or make of coarse and also cheap flour.

And that the Savior got first-fruits the those who He was to save, Paul asserted when he said, ‘And if the first-fruits it is in holy, the bump is likewise holy,’ teaching the the expression ‘first-fruits’ denoted the which is spiritual, yet that ‘the lump’ supposed us, the is, the animal Church, the lump of i m sorry they say He assumed, and also blended it through Himself, inasmuch together He is ‘the leaven.’-St. Irenaeus, Against Heresies , book 1, ch. 8, para. 3

If the bread and also wine we offer are a sacrifice, then they can only it is in likened come the first-fruit sacrifice that the Old Testament, since Christ’s death replaced all various other atonement for sin. And, together we recall, the first-fruit sacrifice to be made v leavened bread. This is what St. Irenaeus is implying through his stating of the first-fruits. We sell ourselves through the bread (i.e. The lump as the Church), but we space filled through Christ (i.e. Together leaven). We cannot offer ourselves except Christ as an unleavened loaf, and also so we use a leavened bread to indicate Christ within us as we market the spirituality first-fruits of our lives.

Unleavened bread is associated with mourning, something totally inappropriate in connection with the Lord’s Day. The Eucharist is around the Resurrection as lot as the Crucifixion, i m sorry is why fasting is forbidden on Sundays and liturgies space festive.

Keep her nights of watching in the center of the work of unleavened bread. And also when the Jews space feasting, perform you fast and wail over them, due to the fact that on the day of their feast lock crucified Christ; and while they space lamenting and also eating unleavened bread in bitterness, execute you feast.-Constitutions that the divine Apostles, book 5, ar 3, para. Xvii

We perform not eat the unleavened bread that bitterness ~ above Sundays. The solid memory of unleavened bread’s association through fasting and putting off old methods is no compatible with the mr who had no ‘old ways’ to placed off and no guilty to repent of.

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The Anaphora prayers the the Liturgy that St. Man Chrysostom speak the the bread in terms of “the night on i beg your pardon He to be betrayed.” while the linked witness that the scriptures draws a near connection between the Passover and the critical Supper, there is no unity between accounts as to exact chronology. Christ’s final meal v His disciples may have actually been in breakthrough of the Passover due to the fact that He knew the His fatality would autumn on the exact day or prior to it. We carry out not recognize for sure what type of bread Christ damaged when that said, “This is mine Body.”

We can therefore conclude the unleavened bread is no specifically associated with the Eucharist, if there appears to be a strong affinity in between leavened bread and also the symbolism of the Kingdom that Heaven. Nobody of the Fathers seem come have any kind of dread of leavened bread. No one does Christ, because He never ever Himself condemned one or the other. And also so, we have the right to conclude that between leavened and also unleavened bread there is a difference of symbolism, and also that leavened bread has a an ext favorable definition when we speak that Christ’s Body.