chemistry-001Can you help a non-chemist? I did pass Chemistry ‘O’-level with a ‘B’. A miracle of Biblical proportions in itself, and credit to awesome teacher Mr Tolputt. I fooled whoever marked my paper, but not myself. Chemistry does my head in. I am however, in awe of the topic, and I could use some help for a ‘thing’ I want to do this Sunday. Allow me to explain.

I’m preaching on Luke 13.18-21 which contains both the parable of the mustard seed and this parable:  “Again he asked, “What shall I compare the kingdom of God to? It is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into about sixty pounds of flour until it worked all through the dough.”” (Luke 13:20–21 NIV11) I’m of the opinion that Jesus is not giving us a first-century version of TGBBO.*

Rather, he is:

  1. Revealing the nature of the kingdom – that it grows
  2. Reassuring his followers that growth may not be rapid, but it will arrive
  3. Reminding his listeners that from while someone as insignificant-looking as an unorthodox semi-rabbi from unfashionable Nazareth of questionable parentage may not look impressive, give it time and his message will spread wider and have more impact than anyone could imagine.

Hence my chemistry quest. I’d like to conclude my sermon with a practical physical demonstration of something small having a disproportionate effect on another substance. I’ve asked a Chemistry teacher of mine for ideas and she’s on the case. But I thought I’d widen the pool. Can you think of something that we could do safely in a school hall on a Sunday morning?  If we use your suggestions I’ll give you credit on the day and on YouTube!

Many thanks for your help in advance. Yours in Chemical ignorance,


*(The Great British Bake Off, about which there has been much recent controversy – but that shall remain a story for another day).