The Yeast We Can Do

Dylan Pahman on Two Kinds of Leaven & Three Spiritual Disciplines

The metaphor of leaven has two opposite but related uses in Scripture. Jesus tells us that the kingdom of heaven is like leaven, which, when mixed with (or "hid in") flour, works its way through a whole lump of dough (Matt. 13:33). St. Paul, on the other hand, twice uses the metaphor of yeast as a warning. In one instance, he exhorts the Corinthians to cast out a sexually immoral man from among them, since he will corrupt (or has corrupted) the whole community (1 Cor. 5:4–6). Similarly, he cautions the Galatians against putting their faith in circumcision rather than in Christ (Gal. 5:3–9), for embracing . . .

Dylan Pahman is a research associate for the Acton Institute (www.acton.org), where he is also assistant editor of the Journal of Markets & Morality and for Christian's Library Press. He has a Master's of Theological Studies in historical theology from Calvin Theological Seminary. He has previously written on the spiritual life from an Orthodox Christian perspective in Theosis and continues to do so at everydayasceticism.com.


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