"Do you not know that a little yeast has its effect all through the dough?" —1 Corinthians 5:6
A little "corruption and wickedness" (1 Cor 5:8) will go a long way. It will act like yeast and affect the whole dough. Our sins can have bad effects for three or four generations (Ex 20:5). One person's sin can cause a whole army to be defeated (Jos 7:11ff) or even thousands of people to die of pestilence (2 Sm 24:15).
However, good leaven is even more powerfully effective than bad leaven. "Despite the increase of sin, grace has far surpassed it" (Rm 5:20). Our obedience to and love of God result in His mercy being poured out even to the thousandth generation (Ex 20:6). Because we are members of the body of Christ, what we do can give life to all the Christians in the world. We can even help those who have died and are in purgatory. We, as members of the Church, hold the keys of the kingdom of heaven (Mt 16:19). Whatever we "declare bound on earth shall be bound in heaven;" whatever we "declare loosed on earth shall be loosed in heaven" (Mt 16:19). Because we are in Christ and He in us (see Jn 17:23), all of our actions are charged with power and life. Because we are children of God, our lives are of the utmost importance and power. Live and act accordingly.
Prayer: Father, may I never trivialize my life. May I live by faith.
Promise: Jesus "looked around at them all and said to the man, 'Stretch out your hand.' The man did so and his hand was perfectly restored.' " —Lk 6:10
Praise: Peter used the spiritual gifts of prophecy, miracles, preaching, and reading of hearts to evangelize both slaves and slave traders.
Nihil obstat: Reverend Robert J. Buschmiller, January 29, 1996
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 5, 1996
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