(My thanks to Harry Osborne for this outline.)
BEWARE THE LEAVEN OF THE PHARISEES
1. Matt. 16:6, 12 (Mk. 8:14-21) - Warns apostles of the teachings of the Pharisees.
2. Traits / Nature of leaven (Leavening Agents in Breadmaking, by Vladia Rudel):
a. The introduction of foreign substance (chemical or organic) into dough which produces carbon dioxide causing expansion. [Yeast - a plant that digests the sugars in starch & gives off carbon dioxide as a by-product of digestion.]
b. It is believed that yeast-risen bread was first developed in ancient Egypt. The Egyptians were accomplished brewers and so had yeast on hand; they grew an early strain of glutinous grain called Emmer wheat .
c. Contamination, corruption & rearranging of dough by foreign matter.
3. Biblical use of leaven:
a. Small amount, large effect; Pervasive - Gal. 5:9.
b. Unseen, but its effect is real & substantial - Matt. 13:33.
c. Contaminating - 1 Cor. 5:6-8.
4. The teachings of the Pharisees are still with us today. Jesus warning is just as appropriate now as then!
I. Self-righteousness - Luke 18:9-14.
A. Self-Defined "Rightness" With God - cf. 2 Cor. 10:12.
1. Trust in self - v. 9, 11-12 (Rm.10:2-3, 5 - Sinlessness! - 4:1-4).
2. Set all others at nought (despise/esteem less/contemptible) - v. 11.
B. We Only Receive Eternal Life Through Faith - Rom. 1:16-17.
II. Hypocrisy - Matthew 23:1-36.
A. Religious, Moral Pretender (an actor, stage player) - Lk. 12:1.
1. Not sincere (genuine) in speech or conduct - 23:3.
2. To be seen of men (external appearance before men superior to internal appearance before God) - 23:5 (6:2-4).
3. Self-exaltation (companion of self-righteousness) - 23:12.
III. Created Man-made Additions To The Word Of God - Matthew 15:1-9; Mark 7:5-13.
A. Divine Commands & Human Tradition Do Not Mix.
1. Elevating human opinion above divine revelation - 15:3-5.
2. Binding personal opinions upon others - 7:3-4, 8-9.
3. Delivered by man, not God - 7:13.
4. Invalidates the power of Gods word - 7:13.
5. Cf. Instrumental music in worship; Salvation without water baptism; Papacy; etc.
-Colossians 2:8, 20-23-
IV. Reject Truth On Divorce & Remarriage - Matthew 19:3-9.
A. They Looked For Ways To Evade The Force Of Gods Law On MDR - 19:2, 7.
1. The universal application of Gods marriage law is denied ("alien sinners are not under Gods marriage law").
a. But, Gods mdr law is universal (all who enter marriage):
(1) 19:4-5 - Established at creation.
(2) 19:6 - Bound by Gods authority over marriage.
(3) 19:9 - "But I say unto you, that whosoever....."
2. The exception is altered &/or minimized - cf. 19:9, 3, 7.
a. "One loosed, both loosed." (19:9).
b. "Pauline exception" - 1 Cor. 7:15. (Not even applied consistently with the context.)
V. Would Not Repent Before Baptism - Matthew 3:7-8.
A. Repentance Is Necessary To Escape Gods Wrath Against Sin - 3:7.
1. To continue in sin after baptism is to forget or ignore the penalty of sin (Gods wrath against it).
a. Sinner cannot continue in sin & be saved! - 3:8.
b. Cf. Adulterer, polygamist, liar, homosexual, thief, etc.
VI. Rejected Necessity Of Water Baptism - Luke 7:29-30.
A. Amounts To Rejecting The Counsel (Word) Of God - 7:30.
1. Doctrine of salvation by "faith only" - 1 Pet. 3:21; Mk. 16:16 (Acts 10:47-48).
2. Sprinkling &/or pouring - Rom. 6:4; Col. 2:12.
Be honest with yourself: Are you a Pharisee? Beware!