The Symbol of Leaven


Scriptures: Matthew 26:26-29, 28:1-6 & 13:33


Song of Praise: Doxology


Devotion:

In memoriam to God's providential liberation, Israel celebrated the Feast of Passover.

In preparation for the feast, every good Jew was careful to rid their house of yeast and leaven.

Unleavened bread was the centerpiece of this feast, so they didn't need any yeast for their festival celebrations.


In the Old Testament, God gave Israel an object lesson, or a symbol. Yeast was a symbol used to depict sin.

In the Old Covenant, God constantly warned Israel to keep sin out of their camp. In a literal and figurative sense, Israel was constantly on the defense against the many sinful nations that surrounded them. They did try to drive people/sin out of their promised land, but it seemed as though they never were able to finish the task (Judges 1:27-36).

God wanted His people to be free of the bondage of sin. God's plan was to one day liberate them from sin's power completely, just as He had once liberated them from Pharaoh's bonds. In the meantime, God put up borders for protection (the law) to keep them from being overcome with sin.

God knew that once His people began to make seemingly little, sinful compromises, it would not be long before all of Israel would turn away from Him.

That teeny sinful compromise would easily work it's way through the entire nation of Israel.

Just like a tiny amount of yeast can make a large lump of bread dough rise, so too can a small sin corrupt an entire nation of people.


In Matthew, we read that Jesus uses the imagery of yeast a bit differently. His parable explains that yeast does easily work it's way through the lump of dough, but His illustration

is positive, not negative. Instead of warning His people of the dangers of the yeast, Jesus is encouraging His people to become like the yeast.

We, the church, are the ones now on the offense, charging the gates of hell.

Unlike Israel, we won't settle for just a portion of the land promised (the Earth), we want it all.

Because sin has been disarmed, we are no longer relegated to playing defense.

Jesus came to defeat sin for good, and that is exactly what He happened in the resurrection.

The parable of the yeast that Jesus told is a proclamation of a regime change.


Because of Jesus' resurrection, everything changed; everything was renewed and transformed...even symbols.


Instead of shunning the world to avoid sin, Jesus conquered sin. He then commands us to act as prolific as yeast in our own environments.

One day, the leaven of the Gospel will be worked through the entire Earth.

All men will know God, from the least to the greatest; this is our inheritance.


The feast of the Lord's Supper is not simply a memorial of Jesus' sacrifice for sin.

It is evidence that Jesus' Kingdom has been established and is now steadily growing.

Our Communion bread is not unleavened like the Passover bread.

Because Jesus rose from the dead, our bread should be risen with yeast. This symbolizes the beginning of the Gospel yeast working its way through all creation, beginning with the church of Jesus.

Our Communion bread is full of yeast, and as we partake of it, the Spirit ministers to us in a special way.

As the bread fills our body with nourishment, so too does Christ nourish and revive us with spiritual blessings.

As we consume the bread, it's nourishment saturates our entire body. Likewise, the Gospel will imbue all the Earth.

The feast of the Lord's Supper is a victory party, whereby we, the guests, are given a glimpse into the eternal state of the new creation.

Table Talk Questions:

  1. What did leaven represent in the Old Testament?

  2. How does Jesus recreate the symbol of yeast in His parable and resurrection?

  3. Why should communion bread be leavened?


Benediction:

May the Lord bless you and keep you;

May the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you;

May the Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.

Numbers 6:24‭-‬26


Meal: Pasta Carbonara, Cast-Iron Rosemary Bread, & Peach Cobbler


Recipes:

Pasta Carbonara

Prep and Cook Time: about 45 minutes

Serves: 8-10


2 pounds or 2 boxes Pasta (linguini is preferred)

1 pound chopped Bacon

2 teaspoon Garlic Powder

1 Tablespoon Parsley, chopped

1 small Onion, diced

4 egg Yolks

1 cup Heavy cream

1 ¼ Cup parmesan Cheese shreds

½ teaspoon Salt & ¼ teaspoon Pepper


Instructions:

In a large saucepan, fry your bacon and onion together, cooking the bacon until it is crispy. Do not drain the grease.

Turn off heat, allowing the bacon and onions to cool a bit. Begin to prepare the pasta.

In a large pot of heavily salted, boiling water, add pasta. Cook to al dente. Drain, cover to keep warm and set to the side.

In the large pan of bacon and onions, add in the garlic, heavy cream, parmesan cheese, and egg yolks. Mix together well, making sure that the sauce is fully combined, add in the drained pasta, making certain the sauce coats all the pasta. Add in salt, pepper and parsley.

Serve while still hot.


Cast-iron Rosemary Bread

Prep and Cook Time: If possible, prep the dough in the morning. Cook time is about 40-45 minutes

Yields: 1 large loaf


Ingredients:

3 cups all-purpose Flour

2 teaspoon Garlic Powder

1 Tablespoon finely chopped Rosemary or Herb de Provence

1 ¼ teaspoons Salt

¾ teaspoon Black Pepper

½ teaspoon active Yeast

1 ½ cups lukewarm Water


Instructions:

In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, garlic, rosemary, salt, pepper and yeast.

Add water to create a wet, sticky dough.

Cover with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature for as long as you can, at least 3 hours, up to 12.

Prepare a 10-inch cast iron skillet by spray it with non stick cooking spray. You may also use a regular cookie sheet.


Once the dough has rested and risen, gently shape dough into a round ball.

Place it into the prepared skillet. Loosely cover it with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature until dough has doubled in size, about 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 450 F. Place into oven and bake until brown, about 30-40 minutes.

Serve with butter


Peach Cobbler

Prep and Cook Time: about an hour

Serves:12


Cake:

½ cup Butter

1 cup Flour

Pinch of Salt

1 Tablespoon Baking Powder

1 cup Milk

1 cup Sugar


Filling:

1 Tablespoons Lemon juice

4 cups peach slices (fresh or canned)

1 teaspoon ground Cinnamon

1 cup sugar, divided


In a large saucepan, add together peaches, cinnamon, 1 cup of sugar, and lemon juice.

Bring to boil and remove from heat.

In a large mixing bowl, mix together remaining ingredients.

Prepare a 9x13 baking dish.

Pour peach mixture evenly in the bottom of the dish.

Pour cake mixture over the peach mixture.

Bake at 375 F for 40 minutes or until cake is golden brown

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