A Little Leaven

Galatians 5:7-9 “Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth? This persuasion cometh not of him that calleth you. A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.”

Notice the words in the text. Things were going so well for those believers in Galatia. However, someone added something detrimental to their “run” and it hindered their relationship with God. Paul emphatically denounced the change. Paul’s persuasion was that of perseverance and faithfulness. Regardless of life’s circumstances, Paul believed that nothing and no one should be allowed to hinder the path of the believer. And then Paul speaks of leaven. It doesn’t take much, he said, to affect the whole.

Notwithstanding, these words were written 2,000 years ago, they are more current and applicable than ever. The Bible is a living organism. It breathes. It lives, and in this respect it is both a settled truth and a living document. The Bible is God’s Word for our lives in the present and Paul is preaching a message that demands to be heard. His is a question of  calling out people who hinder people. He did not say, “what” hindered you. He said, “who” hindered you. Who was it that caused you to turn away from the truth that was given? Who spoke into your life that tripped you up and caused you to lose faith and then doubt the very tenets of the Faith?

Not a few have been tainted by a “little leaven.” Many have fallen away, because they allowed a negative voice to enter their world. It happens over dinner or lunch. It happens among friends, on the phone and on social media. Questions are asked and doors are open that hinder faith and faithfulness. We may be equipped in fighting spiritual oppression, but many are failing to guard their ears from “a little leaven.”

Contrary to popular belief, the enemy of our soul does not need a large opening to cause confusion and doubt. He just needs someone with an issue to offer a small hindrance. And to this end, the enemy uses people, even other believers, to hinder our lives. So instead of moving forward; running the race with perseverance, the first persuasion is dismantled and the race is lost.

The Holy Spirit is speaking to us through His forever settled Word: Stand fast. Don’t be shaken. Be unmovable; rooted and grounded in the Word, the Faith, and the church. Don’t think that little things won’t cause damage. Be sober. Be awake and on guard. Love everyone, but invest yourself in whatever and whoever is honest, right, pure, and of good report.

Pastor Jeffrey Harpole

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