The Allurement of Sin
I haven’t been there in years, but the memories of it are indelibly etched in my mind. I dare say that at the mere mention of it, anyone and everyone who has ever traveled along North Central expressway in Dallas can identify with these wonderful memories. This memorable event always occurs as we pass through a certain well-known intersection. As we breathe in the air surrounding that particular area, our taste buds are aroused, our appetites are whetted, and we are inexplicably drawn to it like moths to a flame. Just the mere aroma is a phenomenal attraction—an unforgettable experience. We want to stop, turn aside and indulge our ravenous appetites to the max! We can’t help ourselves.
If you’ve ever been there, you have already identified the area. Of course! It’s Mrs. Baird’s Bakery! I can nearly hear the roars of ‘Ahs’ as we recall the unbelievably alluring aroma emanating from her fresh baked bread. It is a near irresistible attraction.
We bake a lot of breads in our own kitchen. Being from the south, we love to bake a pan of cornbread to go with our pots of stew, or bake a batch of homemade buttermilk biscuits for our weekend breakfasts. They are wonderful; but the aroma from them in no way compares with the aroma from Mrs. Baird’s bakery—not even close! I’m hesitant to even mention the aromas from our breads in the same paragraph with Mrs. Baird’s.
So what’s the difference? What makes her breads smell so enticing? What makes us nearly willing to give our next week’s paycheck in exchange for a loaf of her fresh baked bread right out the oven? It’s the Yeast! And the more yeast, the better! And her breads contain a substantial amount of yeast. It’s the aroma from that yeast that draws us like a magnet as we pass by her kitchen.
The Bible contains a number of references to yeast, but in the Bible it’s called leaven. And in the Bible, leaven is never put in the ‘good things’ column. In the Bible, leaven is bad stuff. In the Bible, it’s synonymous with sin.
So, how could anything that smells so wonderful—so enticing, be compared to sin? Well, if you leave a loaf of Mrs. Baird’s wonderful bread out in a warm room, untouched for any lengthy duration, you’ll see why leaven is compared to sin. That loaf of bread is a goner! That which made it so alluring at the beginning is in the process of destroying it. It will soon become contaminated with mold and ruin. It will actually become harmful, unfit for consumption by man or beast. Throw it away! It’s disgusting.
I am reminded of the original film, ‘The Odd Couple’, where Oscar and Felix were involved in some sort of card game in their den. Oscar asked Felix if he would like a sandwich, to which Felix replied with an affirmative answer. Upon investigation into the kitchen, Oscar called back, asking if he would prefer a green one or a gray one. Yuk! Obviously, those sandwiches had fallen victim to leaven. Their edible value was history!
Leaven provides such a perfect illustration of the allurement of sin and its consequences. Leaven is to the life of bread what sin is to our lives—so very alluring at the beginning and so ruinous at the end. We read in James 1:14-15, “But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then, when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death (NASB).”
End of story!
The Allurement of Sin