A Little Leaven And Lost Blessing

by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam

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It is difficult, if not impossible, to determine from Paul’s Epistle to the Galatians, just what the Galatian believers thought the rite of circumcision would accomplish for them spiritually. We doubt that they knew themselves, but the Judaizers had come in among them and had captured their attention so that these, who had been so gloriously saved by grace, now “desired to be under the law” (Gal. 4:21). They did not deny the efficacy of the finished work of Christ, but they were interested — just interested — in submitting to a religious ceremony which would in itself be a denial of the all-sufficiency of His redemptive work (3:1; 5:2-4). Result: the blessing was already vanishing (5:14) and the Apostle had to warn them: “A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump” (5:9). You can’t admit a little leaven and expect it to stop there.

With the Corinthians it was rather a case of countenancing moral wrong. One of their members had been living in grievous sin. But then, their number was large, and he was just one, and the congregation as a whole abounded in spiritual gifts. Feeling quite satisfied with themselves, therefore, they simply overlooked this disgrace to the name of Christ. But listen to Paul’s — God’s — view of the matter:

“And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you” (I Cor. 5:2).

“Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump?

“Purge out therefore the old leaven…” (Vers. 6,7).

In these days when both spiritual error and moral wrong are made so palatable, when apostate unbelief and worldliness are presented so appetizingly, we do well to take heed to the Spirit’s warning to quickly purge out the “little leaven” that threatens to permeate the whole loaf.

To the Reader:

Some of our Two Minutes articles were written many years ago by Pastor C. R. Stam for publication in newspapers. When many of these articles were later compiled in book form, Pastor Stam wrote this word of explanation in the Preface:

"It should be borne in mind that the newspaper column, Two Minutes With the Bible, has now been published for many years, so that local, national and international events are discussed as if they occurred only recently. Rather than rewrite or date such articles, we have left them just as they were when first published. This, we felt, would add to the interest, especially since our readers understand that they first appeared as newspaper articles."

To this we would add that the same is true for the articles written by others that we continue to add, on a regular basis, to the Two Minutes library. We hope that you'll agree that while some of the references in these articles are dated, the spiritual truths taught therein are timeless.

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