“Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread, but on the first day you shall remove leaven from your houses…” —Exodus 12:15
“You shall also observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread, for on this very day I brought your hosts out of the land of Egypt; therefore you shall observe this day throughout your generations as a permanent ordinance.” —Exodus 12:17
The Feast of Matzot, or “Unleavened Bread” celebrates several events. As the Israelites left their houses in Egypt in haste, they brought with them loaves of unleavened bread, and there likely was not enough time to bake them for their journey. They were also commanded to cleanse their houses of all leaven, and only eat unleavened bread for 7 days. This was to be a sign and symbol to the people, to purge all sin from their midst.
The festival of Matzot also is a celebration of first fruits. The first fruits of the (barley) harvest were to be dedicated to YHVH each year. And finally, the waving of the first fruits began the process of “counting the omer,” or the commanded counting of seven weeks to the 5oth day, called Shavuot...