1 Corinthians 5:6
“Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump?”
In the Scriptures, leaven is always a type of sin. When God commanded Israel to make a meat offering sacrifice, He commanded them to be sure not to burn any leaven. When Israel observed the Passover, they were to eat bread without leaven because the Passover was a picture of Christ being the sacrifice for sin. God did not want any leaven in the Passover sacrifice because Christ had no sin. Leaven is always a picture of sin.
God asks a rhetorical question in the verse above, “Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump?” This church allowed sin in their midst and didn’t realize how much it had affected them and their ability to serve the LORD. Just like sin affected the effectiveness of this church, it will also affect your ability to be effective in your walk with the LORD. In the verse above, four things are revealed about sin and its affect and effect on the Christian.
First, all sin starts small. God says, “a little leaven” is what affects the whole lump. If Christians would get to the point of dealing with the first presence of sin, they would never have to deal with the tragic ending of sin. If you deal with sin the first time you do it, you won’t have to deal with it when it has become a habit and is controlling you. You may think that your “little” sin is not a big deal, but always remember that all sin starts small. Little sin is big sin because all sin is sin. God never looks at sin as a big or little sin, He looks at sin as sin, and all sin must be dealt with as a big sin.
Second, all sin affects you as a whole. The little leaven leavened the “whole lump.” Though it was just a little leaven, the whole lump was affected by it. Likewise, sin always affects you as a whole. Most people don’t even see how their little sin is affecting them, but it does affect every part of your being. Little sin affects the Christian in a big way. Little sin will affect your spirit, which affects your treatment of others. You will always find that a little sin in your life causes you to be edgy with others because sin affects you as a whole. People will know there is something wrong with you, but because you are able to hide your sin at the moment, they won’t be able to perceive what is affecting you. However, let me assure you that eventually others will find out that your sin was the cause of your actions.
Third, all sin breeds more sin. It is interesting that the little leaven leavened the whole lump; meaning that it spread through the whole lump. You will always find that the little sin causes you to do more sin. Sin is like a disease in that it spreads without you realizing its affect on you. My friend, you may think you will never go so far as to do certain sins, but the “small” sins in your life always opens the door for greater sin. If you don’t want to commit the greater sin, you had better deal with the small sin.
Fourth, all sin affects your perception. When God said, “Know ye not…” He was asking them how they could not see what sin was doing to them. Sin affects the ability to perceive good and bad. You will find when people allow “little” sin in their life that they begin to change and accept things they never used to accept. Always remember that the door to compromise starts with small sin. You must deal with “small” sin immediately if you don’t want it affecting your ability to see through the eyes of God.