Reviewing and renewing Biblical faith through story and study

Saturday, February 20, 2016

DJD220 - Heaven Like Leaven

Read More Daily Jesus
Scripture: 

Matthew 5:19

Starting Question:

Is there an idea in the Bible that you don't understand? What is it?


Heaven Like Leaven

A friend recently popped up on FaceBook with a question. We hadn’t chatted with for some time and it was good to catch up!

The question was an interesting one. Perhaps you’ve thought it yourself. I hadn’t! I researched the question and discovered that my friend was not the first person to be confronted by this idea in Scripture. I’ve edited our conversation down, but here it is in a nutshell:


Happy Sabbath, old friend.....  I need your help!  I cannot understand Matthew 13:33. All through the Bible, leaven is used to symbolise sin, and yet here, it seems to imply leaven is the spreading of the Gospel. But God doesn't use a symbol for something 9/10 times and then, 1/10 use it for the OPPOSITE, does He?

It must mean sin, like the false doctrines permeating throughout God's church.  But then if that's the case, how can that be what the Kingdom of Heaven is like? 

So, the Kingdom of Heaven is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures until it was all leavened......SAY WHAT????? Please help Dave, its really doing my head in trying to work it out......please don’t tell me its the gospel spreading...it cant be.  that would be like God saying the Dragon is Satan all the way through except in one verse where He likens the dragon to an angel of light.....do you know what i mean???

ARRRRGGGGHHHHHH!!!!!!


Lol. Don’t blow a gasket!

You've noticed something many Bible commentators have. Jesus uses leaven to talk about the Kingdom of God while other times in scripture it is used to talk about sin.

The leaven represents the impact - the power, the pervasiveness - of something. When the Bible says sin is like leaven - it means sin 'acts' like or 'works' like leaven 'acts or works' on dough. A little bit can change everything. When Jesus says the Kingdom of Heaven is like leaven - it means God's Kingdom 'acts' like or 'works' like leaven. When God’s Kingdom gets into you, everything changes.

Jesus was a master storyteller who created powerful parables. Imagine the impact this one would have had on his listeners... "This new Kingdom - the One God is beginning right now - is going to take over the world the same way sin has. One little pinch of perfect leaven -  born to a woman in Bethlehem - will be mixed into the dough of humanity, die and ... change everything!”

He used a common understanding - Sin permeates everything - reversed it (took it over for the Kingdom) and gave new meaning to the way God works in our lives.

* Continued tomorrow *



Reflection Question:
How have you seen a little bit of sin mess up a great life?

Prayer time:
Before you pray together, ask: What would you like to say to Jesus today?