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Exodus 23:15

15 First, celebrate the Festival of Unleavened Bread. For seven days the bread you eat must be made without yeast, just as I commanded you. Celebrate this festival annually at the appointed time in early spring, in the month of Abib, for that is the anniversary of your departure from Egypt. No one may appear before me without an offering.

Exodus 23:15 Meaning and Commentary

Exodus 23:15

Thou shalt keep the feast of unleavened bread
Which began on the fourteenth of the month Abib or Nisan, and lasted seven days, during which time no leavened bread was to be eaten by the Israelites, or to be in their houses, of which see the notes on:

(See Gill on Exodus 12:15) (See Gill on Exodus 12:18) (See Gill on Exodus 12:19) (See Gill on Exodus 12:10) (See Gill on Exodus 13:6) (See Gill on Exodus 13:7)

thou shall eat unleavened bread, seven days, as I commanded thee, in
the time appointed of the month Abib;
from the fourteenth of the month to the twenty first:

for in it thou camest out of Egypt;
in such haste that there was no time to leaven the dough in the troughs; in commemoration of which this law was given, and this feast was kept:

and none shall appear before me empty;
at this feast and the two following ones; for, besides the offerings and sacrifices appointed, at the feast of passover was brought a sheaf of the first fruits of the barley harvest; and at the feast of pentecost the two wave loaves or cakes of the first fruits of the wheat harvest; and at the feast of tabernacles they appeared with palm tree branches, and boughs of goodly trees, and poured out water fetched from Siloam, before the Lord: but to this appearance the Jewish doctors F2 say,

``there was no measure fixed; for everyone, if he would, might go up and appear, and go away: according to another interpretation, for the burnt offering of appearance, and the peace offerings of the Chagigah, which a man is bound to bring, as it is written, "ye shall not appear empty"; there is no measure from the law, as it is written, "a man according to the gift of his hand", ( Deuteronomy 16:17 ) , but the wise men fix a measure; to the burnt offering a meah of silver, to the Chagigah two pieces of silver:''

some understand this, not of their bringing anything with them to appear before the Lord with, but of what they should be blessed with there; even with the presence of God, and communion with him, and with the blessings of his grace and goodness; so that however they came, they should not remain, nor go away empty, and so have no cause to repent their appearance before him; but the former sense seems best.


FOOTNOTES:

F2 Bartenora in Misn. Peah, c. 1. sect. 1.

Exodus 23:15 In-Context

13 “Pay close attention to all my instructions. You must not call on the name of any other gods. Do not even speak their names.
14 “Each year you must celebrate three festivals in my honor.
15 First, celebrate the Festival of Unleavened Bread. For seven days the bread you eat must be made without yeast, just as I commanded you. Celebrate this festival annually at the appointed time in early spring, in the month of Abib, for that is the anniversary of your departure from Egypt. No one may appear before me without an offering.
16 “Second, celebrate the Festival of Harvest, when you bring me the first crops of your harvest. “Finally, celebrate the Festival of the Final Harvest at the end of the harvest season, when you have harvested all the crops from your fields.
17 At these three times each year, every man in Israel must appear before the Sovereign, the LORD .

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Hebrew appointed time in the month of Abib. This first month of the ancient Hebrew lunar calendar usually occurs within the months of March and April.