Continuing our series on The Treasure in the Field, The Influence of the Kingdom
Jesus told the parable of the yeast, and the story contains some surprises. Firstly, the woman in the story is making an enormous amount of bread. This is not just feeding a family, but quantities sufficient for a hundred people. So the impact of the little bit of leaven is of much greater magnitude than we would expect. The influence of the kingdom is extensive.
The influence is also intensive. The whole batch of dough gets leavened. Nothing remains unaffected by its influence.
We are also told that the woman in the story mixed the yeast in the dough, and this demonstrates what we would have expected – that the process of history is one in which there is a mixture as both old and new kingdoms co-exist (rather like the mixture in the story of the wheat and tares). But more strangely, Jesus uses a word that tells us that this woman “hid” the yeast in the dough. The element of hidden-ness is important (like treasure hidden in a field).
So the mystery of the power of God’s kingdom is working in secret. Few recognize what is going on under the surface; in fact, unless one is born again, one cannot even see the kingdom (Jn 3:3). But Jesus assures us: however imperceptible it may be, his kingdom is having its intended effect.