Pride is the leaven of the Pharisees, puffing them up the way yeast puffs up bread dough.

Jesus told the apostles to be on their guard against the yeast of the Pharisees, and they thought Jesus was mentioning yeast because they had brought no bread with them. Mark put this story in his Gospel to let us know that the apostles had initially been simple boys with no poetic feelings. Jesus was obviously using the image of yeast as a metaphor for pride. Pride puffs people up the way yeast puffs up bread dough. The kindred fault of the Pharisees was one of hypocrisy, which makes one present himself as more important than he is. In that regard the notion of guile is similar to that of pride and hypocrisy. Jesus praised Nathanael as a “true Israelite in whom there is no guile.”

It is our successes that leave us open to pride, hypocrisy and guile. Usually people say it was a man named Lord Acton who first said, “Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

With the military taking power in Egypt what we most fear is that his new found power will go to the head of the man put in charge temporarily. There is danger that, enjoying his power, he will put off turning the government over to an elected president.

People say that the greatest thing George Washington did for his country was not defeating the British but his relinquishing power when his term in office was over.

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