Few years ago I had an experience with a packet of yeast I bought at the store, for bread making, which turned out unsuccessful because the recipe was wrong. I then kept the yeast in the fridge for storage. The yeast sachet wasn’t properly sealed so I woke up the next morning to find the interior lining of my fridge entirely covered by particles of yeast. I later learnt that the temperature was optimal for further growth of yeast since its a microbe.
In the world of baking, we often marvel at the seemingly small ingredient that makes a significant impact. Just a pinch has the power to transform a lump of dough into a risen, fragrant loaf of bread.
With the potential of influence through yeast, the size or amount doesn’t matter, a little goes a long way. It can both convey positive, as well as, a negative influence, so Jesus used it to describe the kingdom of Heaven for us to accept its positive potential.
“He told them still another parable: ‘The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into about sixty pounds of flour until it worked all through the dough.'”Matthew 13:33 (NIV)
In this parable, we see a woman using a small amount of yeast to influence a large amount of flour. The Bible said she worked through the dough so it affects the whole. When you put yeast in an area of flour, just that part will be affected but when you knead the dough, the amount of flour doesn’t matter anymore, it spreads effective and causes transformation or growth. And the effect of yeast is irreversible!!!
Christ emphasizes on the fact that all our actions whether negative or positive has the power to influence Peoples behavior.
During Passover, yeast was symbolically associated with impurity and sin, and its removal represents a commitment to a new, purified way of living. It called the Israelites to a place of repentance of all sin or contaminations.
Note, if yeast can take effect anywhere, then in the sight of evil, the evil will become bigger and the multiple.
“Meanwhile, when a crowd of many thousands had gathered, so that they were trampling on one another, Jesus began to speak first to his disciples, saying: ‘Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.'”Luke 12:1 (NIV)
In this verse, Jesus (yeast) is addressing (in a position of influence) a large crowd (a large amount of dough) that has gathered around him, to the point where they are pressing in on one another (process of kneading). He takes this opportunity to give a warning, specifically to his disciples, about the behavior of the Pharisees (an observable yeast of negative influence)
The metaphor “yeast” used symbolized something that spreads and permeates, similar to how yeast affects dough. Jesus warns against the “yeast of the Pharisees,” which he identifies as hypocrisy.
Jesus cautioned his disciples to be aware of the deceptive and insincere behavior exhibited by some Pharisees. Directing their focus towards the importance of authenticity and sincerity in one’s faith, rather than outward displays of righteousness that may mask internal hypocrisy.
Authenticity is the foundation of trust. When people perceive you as genuine, they are more likely to believe in your words and actions, leading to stronger, more meaningful relationships- hence allowing themselves to be influenced by you. It inspires.
When people discover that someone is being hypocritical—saying one thing but doing another—it erodes trust and breaks down communication. It Weakens a person’s moral authority and influence.
As Christians when we are hypocritical, It undermines the credibility’s of our faith or espouses our moral system, as people may question the sincerity and authenticity of its followers.
Rightly Leavening yourself involves the alignment of one’s actions with their values and beliefs. Hence cultivating a sense of respect and admiration from others. Pretending to be someone you’re not can be mentally and emotionally taxing but embracing authenticity reduces the stress and anxiety associated with trying to maintain a façade.
“Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful;”
Psalms 1:1 NKJV
Living the life of the kingdom is, intentionally avoiding the interactions that can potentially influence you. The yeasty body of Christ is enough to mingle the world righteously, we are the tool in Gods hands to knead His righteousness into the world.
In your little office, classroom, operation room or congregation, allow God to rightly knead the yeast of Genuineness.
Lord God almighty, thank you for making my influence like yeast, little but effective. Use me lord in your own way to cause change in the world. Help me be my authentic self always, help me identify negative influences and keep me from evil. In The mighty name of Jesus amen.
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