Netzarim, Original followers of Yeshua & His 12
Every year at Passover time, people write to ask questions about what to do during the Passover holidays. "Are we to remove from our houses everything with YEAST in it?" "Is it okay to put our breads and box cake mixes in the garage during this time, or does the garage constitute part of the 'house'?" Below are some answers to these nagging questions, but in the meantime, you can Google "Passover" for suggestions on how to keep this feast. Be sure to ignore those that sound "rabbinical" - i.e., they insist you buy brand new pots and pans before you can consider your kitchen "kosher."
You can Google and purchase Passover haggadahs (instructions) or purchase a copy of Barney Kasdan's book, "God's Appointed Times" which outlines the basics of keeping the feasts. Once you "get the hang" of celebrating each feast, it becomes easier with each passing year!
YHWH never meant for His Shabbats to be a burden. MAN turned them into a burden....
The trick is NOT to get wrapped around the axle! YHWH said to stay away from leavened bread. He never said a thing about grapes or wine, or beer, buttermilk or barbecue sauce; and He never suggested we should get "rabbinical" about the Passover holidays. He never said "yeast"; He said LEAVEN. The Bible translations that say "yeast" are in error. Why? Because YEAST is everywhere! Every time you inhale, you get yeast in your lungs. The thing to concentrate on is LEAVEN!
But wait...Isn't leaven an early stage of yeast? Please read the answer here.
There are so many websites with MISINFORMATION and false teachings by scholar "wannabe's".... This is exactly why we must verify in the Bible EVERYTHING we see, read and hear. We should never, ever "just take somebody's word for it." YHWH tells us exactly how to celebrate His Feasts, and yet people have "added to" His Word ad nauseum.
Here's the real scoop:
Unleavened Bread/Hag HaMatzot celebrated on Nisan 15 marks the beginning of a seven day period during which the eating of leavened Bread is forbidden as leaven is a symbol of sin (I Cor. 5:6-8). Messiah Yeshua fulfilled this Feast when he was buried and became our righteousness (Rom. 6:4, II Cor. 5:21).
Exodus 23:14-16: "Three times a year, you are to observe a festival for me. Keep the festival of matzah: for seven days, as I ordered you, you are to eat matzah (unleavened bread) at the time determined in the month of Aviv; for it was in that month that you left Egypt. No one is to appear before me empty-handed. Next, the festival of harvest, the firstfruits of your efforts sowing in the field; and last, the festival of ingathering, at the end of the year, when you gather in from the fields the results of your efforts."
When do we eat the seder meal this year?
In 2010, we ate the seder meal on the evening around sunset of March 29, which was Nisan 14 (the day Yeshua died). The Passover lambs in ancient times were killed and prepared before sunset and eaten at/after sunset of Nisan 14 (which, after sunset becomes Nisan 15, which kicks off the Feast of Unleavened Bread which is a Holy Day - a day we are to take off from work). Yeshua, our Passover Lamb, was removed from the stake and buried before sunset on Nisan 14, which fell on a Wednesday on that particular year.
During Passover we have TWO holidays; one at the beginning of Passover and one at the END: In 2010, the first one begins at sunset on March 29 - sunset March 30; the second one starts at sunset April 4 to sunset April 5. No work is to be done on either of those days. In between, for 7 days we are not allowed to eat anything with leaven in it (meaning anything that causes bread or cakes to rise).
Can I just keep my breads and cakes and the mixes in the garage during Passover:
No. Throw your bread and cakes and mixes away if you can't use them before the unleavened bread days. I used to put our breads and cake mixes in the garage, and one day it dawned on me that this was cheating. YHWH said to get the leaven OUT OF OUR LIVES because it represents sin. If we hang onto our bread and cake mixes, we're in essence saying, "I'm getting rid of it for the holidays, but I'm bringin' it back once they're over!"
This whole thing is YHWH simply trying to show us that by DOING something ("doing" serves as a reminder), we are reminded of Him and His Torah commands. If we truly love Him, we should not be "half-hearted" about it. Otherwise, we'll be no better than most of the world which is full of hypocrites.
Many traditional Jews sell their stuff to the Gentiles during Passover, but that is really bad in my opinion because Gentiles are supposed to be "leaven-free" during this time, too - whether they realize it, or not. By selling it to the Gentiles, we're basically causing THEM to sin...It doesn't matter whether or not they are Torah observant; the fact is, WE ARE, and we're ALL God's children who are supposed to be obeying Him. By selling or giving them our baked goods/mixes, we're showing that we don't care about our lost brothers and sisters.
About Holy Days:
First, we must realize they are our "dates" with God; the times we are to cease from our daily routines of work and just REST in Him, concentrating on Him and His Word and just thanking Him. High holy days are Shabbats, and like the weekly Shabbats, they are meant for REST and ceasing our regular income-producing work...and yes, we can also have fun on those days, too, and spend time with our families, etc. YHWH doesn't expect us to do nothing but study His Word all day long; He knows we have to take a break to eat and rest and to take time out for various family obligations.
What does it mean to "cease from work?" Well, if you're a lawyer, stay away from the office and don't take any cases on Shabbat on or on High Holy Days. If you're a chef, don't cook for the public that day; if you're a housewife, don't do any housework; if you're a psychiatrist or dentist or any medical person, do not see patients except on emergency bases. And do NOT use those days to catch up on house or yard work or repairing your broken lawn mower; those things can wait.
Do NOT commit commerce or cause others to work on a Shabbat - i.e., eating at restaurants will cause the cook, the waitress and the cashier to "work for you" while you are there. It doesn't matter whether or not they aren't Torah observant. YOU ARE, and by engaging in commerce or going out to eat, etc., at that moment you're causing others to break YHWH's Shabbats, whether THEY realize it, or not.
Some of the Shabbats require fasting, others don't. (YHWH tells us what to do on each Shabbat, and you'll "get the hang of it" once you start celebrating them.)
Just use common sense during ANY Shabbat. If your baby needs his diapers changed, CHANGE them! If you're hungry, eat! If you're sick enough to need medical attention, go to the hospital. But the main thing is to REST from your normal activities (especially income-producing work) and concentrate on why you are resting, because it's all about YHWH; it's our "date" with YHWH Himself!
At our house, before any regular Shabbat or High Holy Days, I try to cook my food beforehand so all I have to do is to throw the stuff in the microwave and heat it up. (Of course, the traditional rabbis would accuse me of "making a fire" on the Shabbat and have me stoned; but hey, I don't gather firewood or work up a sweat rubbing two sticks together - and how much "work" is it to push a button?)
May YHWH richly bless all those who are trying their best to become Torah-observant!