What does it mean to be the leaven of the Kingdom of God?
Well, in the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus tells us that the Kingdom of Heaven is like leaven, but what is leaven? Leaven or yeast is what was used by bakers to make the bread rise and expand and grow; just like the Kingdom of Heaven. Like the previous parables, the Parable of the Leaven focuses on the Kingdom of Heaven from the Holy Spirit as said in Matthew 13:33. Although the shortest of the previous four parables, the Parable of the Leaven will give us insight into how God’s kingdom is meant to grow.
“33. Another parable He spoke to them: “The kingdom of heaven is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal till it was all leavened.”
In Part 1 of the Parable Series, I talked about how what we as Christians should have our foundation rooted in Christ but if we learn to put our faith and trust in God then we will become like the wise man who built his house on the rock instead of the foolish man who built his house on the sand. However, if we become the foolish man, we will never be able to be a part of the expansion of God’s kingdom.
As Christians, we have to continue to build and read the Word of God in order to develop our foundation in Christ but this also focuses on what the foundation of our heart is like.
In the Parable of the Soils, we go on to focus on what the condition of our hearts are like and how we can change our hearts from the rocky wayside to being the seed that falls on good soil. In the blog post, I said, “Jesus explains what each of the soils represents and as people and Christians and this should show us what the true nature of our hearts are like.” And that idea of being the seed that Jesus uses to reach others should give us as Christians the encouragement to be better and look to becoming the good and fertile soil.
Each soil is a representation of how as Christians, we can either choose to be the seed that Christ uses or be discarded like the seed that fell by the wayside or the seed that was choked by the thorns (the world.)
- (Matthew 13:19) – The Seed that Fell on the Wayside: As we see with the first seed; it was cast by the wayside but what Jesus says next should prayerfully give us insight into the foundation of our heart saying, “19… the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart.”
- If you read the Bible but don’t sow it into your life then the Enemy will come and snatch away the message that could be used to empower you in life.
- (Matthew 13:20-21) – The Seed that Fell on Stony Ground: With this seed that fell on stony ground, Christ is trying to tell us that when we immediately have the Word of God in our hearts and lives, we are joyful and exuberant; however, it’s when circumstances and trials come in our lives that cause us to stumble in our walk with Christ.
- In verses 20-21, Christ said, “ … he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; 21. yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles.”
- (Matthew 13:22) – The Seed the Fell Among the Thorns: The seed that fell among the thorns is interesting to me because it reflects us as Christians and the effect humanity’s sin can have on a believer. As I said in the blog post for this, “I feel that because of the world’s belief in material possession and wealth that we get so caught up in what the world think about us and how much money we are making that we don’t even stop and realize that God’s Word can’t take root in our lives due to us caring more about the world then God’s Word.”
Josh Monen, an entrepreneur and writer said, “… the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches are the reasons why the thorny ground person does not bear fruit.”
- (Matthew 13:23) – The Seed that Fell on Good Soil: And now we come to the seeds that fell on fertile soil. When we learn to listen and receive God’s Word into our life we will be able to inspire others as I said here saying, “If we learn to become the good ground where God’s Word takes root in our lives then we can then use God’s Word as a tool to empower and inspire others to follow after Christ.”
- The fertile and good soil that is God’s Word should be the focal point on which the foundation of our hearts should be like.
The Parables of the Wheat and the Tares and the Mustard Seed both focus on us as Christians and people because while the Parable of the Wheat and the Tares focuses on the tares that come up and try and uproot a Christian’s faith in Christ and how if we are like the tares; we will be cast into the fire. While the Parable of the Mustard Seed focuses on the growth of the Kingdom of Heaven where I referenced Isaiah 55:10-11.
Isaiah 55:10-11 says, “10. … But water the earth, And make it bring forth and bud, That it may give seed to the sower and bread to the eater, 11. So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to be void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.”
Unlike the kingdoms of the world, the Parable of the Leaven talks about how the Kingdom of God will grow and expand not by military and political power but it’s by the power of the Holy Spirit that will allow the Kingdom of Heaven to grow. As the body of Christ and as believers, we too can help expand and grow God’s Kingdom if we have the Holy Spirit flowing through us and empowering us to fulfill our purpose on Earth.
I pray that you gain a better understanding of what we as Christians and people were called to do on Earth.
PDF FILE: The Parable of the Leaven
Author Unknown. “The Leaven”, http://parablesonline.com/the-leaven/ . Accessed 18 Oct 2017.
Author Unknown. “What kind of Soil?” 4 Apr 2013, http://www.terryvirgo.org/articles/what-kind-of-soil/ . Accessed 20 Oct 2017.
Author Unknown. “Mustard Seed”, http://www.gbcdecatur.org/sermons/MustardSeed . Accessed 20 Oct 2017.
McNeely, Darris. “Lessons From the Parables: The Parable of the Tares: God’s Field”, 13 May 2015, https://www.ucg.org/the-good-news/lessons-from-the-parables-the-parable-of-the-tares-gods-field . Accessed 20 Oct 2017.
Hendren, Jack. “Build on the Rock”, https://lifehopeandtruth.com/change/christian-conversion/the-sermon-on-the-mount/build-on-the-rock/ . Accessed 20 Oct 2017.