THE SYMBOLISM OF YEAST IN THE BIBLE.

I write these posts so that we all can learn as we think about God’s word. If you disagree and comment on what you do not understand, the same way as I do, then we both learn. I must consider your view and I must think a bit more about what I understand. Perhaps you are right and I am wrong, or perhaps we both are right, from our point of view. It is possible for both to be right and yet disagree. Sometimes we are only placing a different definition on some key word.

I wrote a post on tithing (It is not even possible to tithe!) and soapyjames challenged some of my conclusions. That forced me to re-examine my understanding and God added to my comprehension of the symbolism of yeast as used in Scripture. Because we are both genuine in our desire to understand God’s word, I think soapyjames also gained understanding.

Yeast is always used as a symbol of sin in Scripture. Almost all of the Old Testament offerings to God were to be void of any yeast. They all were symbolic of Jesus. He is the bread of life and that bread is without sin and usually covered in oil, which I think is symbolic of understanding or faith: the two are, at least for me, very closely related.

The fellowship offering is the only one where yeast is allowed and it was to be presented along with cakes of bread made without yeast and mixed with oil, wafers made without yeast and spread with oil, and cakes of fine flour well-kneaded and mixed with oil. That was a symbol of Jesus (bread of life with no sin/yeast). The cakes of bread made with yeast, which were to be presented along with the bread without yeast, I believe, symbolized the church: you and me that have sinned (and still do).

There is another offering described in Leviticus 23 that also required yeast in the bread and along with the bread seven male lambs, each a year old and without defect, one young bull and two rams were to be sacrificed as a burnt offering to the LORD. It is called the offering of new grain and the symbolism is the same as the fellowship offering.

Then there is Communion where the bread is to be without yeast, which represents Jesus. The emblem of the blood of Jesus is to be wine. In fully fermented wine all of the yeast is destroyed and that is why God chose wine to represent the blood of Jesus. The Blood of Jesus destroyed the power of sin and that is what the wine represents.

Because soapyjames caused me to dwell on yeast God has granted me the answer to a question that has puzzled me sense I first read it. (John 19:29&30 NIV) A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus’ lips. When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.

No one drinks vinegar to quench their thirst. It was a cruel thing to do, to offer vinegar instead of water, but that is consistent with the crucifixion of Jesus.

In order to make wine the air must be kept from the juice. If air is allowed to contact the juice, vinegar is produced instead of wine. The result is that the product is spoiled or undrinkable. The spirit that is at work in those who are disobedient is the ruler of the kingdom of the air (Eph 2:2 NIV). Jesus kept the air away and he made wine, but the world did not and we make vinegar. The symbolism of Jesus drinking vinegar is that he took our sin.

Study yeast in the Bible and you will see that Jesus predicted the condition of the church today.

Mat 13:33 (NIV) He told them still another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into a large amount of flour until it worked all through the dough.”

Luke 13:20&21 (NIV) Again he asked, “What shall I compare the kingdom of God to? It is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into a large amount of flour until it worked all through the dough.”

13 Responses to THE SYMBOLISM OF YEAST IN THE BIBLE.

  1. soapyjames says:

    astudent,

    It’s been a while. I moved house. This is a very good explanation indeed. I do gain understanding from our discussions and thankful you have the patience to answer my questions. It all makes sense now. Thankyou for posting this.

    Pretty sure I owe you a reply somewhere.
    Peace

  2. Josette Robles says:

    Awesome Job Brother! God Bless :)

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  5. Could you write more about yeast, or is that the extent of yeast? Why have unleavened bread?

  6. Is there more you could write about concerning yeast? What is a big wine holder called? VAT, and this is the acrostic for Visceral Adipose Tissue.

  7. astudent says:

    Charlotte Fairchild,

    Word Origin & History
    vat
    early 13c., southern variant (see V) of O.E. fæt “container, vat,” from P.Gmc. *fatan (cf. O.S., O.N. fat, O.Fris. fet, M.Du., Du. vat, O.H.G. faz, Ger. faß).
    Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

    We can make an acrostic from VAT to say most anything. Sometimes I am rather slow and this is one of those times. I don’t understand what you mean!

    We use unleavened bread to represent the body of Christ, because he had no sin.

    There is one time that an offering, in the Old Testament, where bread with yeast was part of the ritual. That was the fellowship offering of thanksgiving (Lev 7:11-21). That bread represented the person that gives the fellowship offering, because that person has sin in their body.

    Understanding that yeast represents sin can help make Scripture a little more clear: sometimes.

  8. Deb Lee says:

    thank you for your insight. your explanation has given me food for thought and a clearer understand. i hope you continue sharing as i enjoy reading your posts. they are, indeed, helpful to me.

  9. astudent says:

    Deb Lee,

    Thanks for saying that my posts are helpful to you.

    Please, only consider what I say as a question and not an answer. I assume that you have been baptized and therefore you do not need anyone to teach you (1John 2:27).

    Having said that, I wonder how anyone could not talk, write, and think about such a wonderful God.

    I have not stopped writing posts. God has not stopped giving me more understanding, I have just slowed down. Perhaps I am becoming lazy. Or perhaps lazier.

  10. Germany says:

    That was both intriguing in addition as insightful!

    Thank you for sharing your views with us.

  11. astudent says:

    Germany,

    That is funny! I have never had a whole country thank me for sharing my views!

    Well, that is the way it reads.

    One finds what one looks for and I am always looking for humor.

    However, seriously, you are welcome.

  12. rahulusfbcm says:

    Wow thank you so much for this! #MindBlown

  13. astudent says:

    rahulusfbcm,

    You are welcome. The pleasure was all mine.

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