33 He told them another parable, “The kingdom of heaven is like [a]leaven, which a woman took and worked into three [b]measures of flour until all of it was leavened.”
Matthew 13:33This is the first time leaven is mentioned in the New Testament. See Ex 12:15 for the first mention of leaven in the Old Testament. The Hebrew word (seor) refers specifically to the leavening agent (as opposed to dough containing it), which today is thought of as yeast, a type of fungi. In Jewish thinking, leaven was symbolic of impurity and corruption. Jesus used it as a symbol for the corrupt and hypocritical teachings of the Pharisees and Sadducees (see especially Luke 12:1; cf Matt 16:11; Mark 8:15), but He also used leaven’s ability to permeate a mass of dough many times its own size as an illustration of the spread of the kingdom of heaven as here and in Luke 13:21.
Matthew 13:33A measure was about a peck and a half, which would be enough bread to feed a hundred people.
You'll get this book and many others when you join Bible Gateway Plus. Learn more
You must be logged in to view your newly purchased content. Please log in below or if you don't have an account, creating one is easy and only takes a few moments. After you log in your content will be available in your library.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your free trial.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to choose a monthly or yearly subscription, and then enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your subscription.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate, click the button below.
Upgrade, and get the most out of your new account. An integrated digital Bible study library - including complete notes from the Believer's Bible Commentary and the Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible (NIV and NRSV) - is just a step away! Try it free for 30 days.