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WHEAT AND TARES
Jesus spoke of the parable of the Wheat and the Tares to the multitudes on the seashore while he was sitting in a boat. It presents the problem and reality of evil mingling with the godly.
The Kingdom of Heaven is like a farmer sowing good seed in his field but one night when he slept his enemy came and sowed thistles (darnel, a wild grain weed that looks similar to wheat) among the wheat. When the crop began to grow, the thistles (darnel weed) did too. The farmer's helpers asked, "Shall we pull out the thistles?" "No", the farmer said, "You'll hurt the wheat if you do. Let them both grow together and I will tell the reapers to sort out the thistles and burn them and put the wheat in the barns". THOSE WITH EARS LISTEN-Matthew 13
EXPLANATION TO HIS DISCIPLES Explanation was given to his disciples after they had asked, in a private home.
In the Kingdom of God there is a final and absolute separation of all mankind into two distinct groups.
Jesus is the farmer who sows the choice seed, the field is the world and Jesus clearly says that it is His, He calls the world His field. The farmer's helpers recognise the ownership to whom the field belongs, and that He had sown good seed. The seed represents the people of the Kingdom.
The difference between wheat grain and wild darnel grain is not discernible until they have sprung up from the ground.
The thistles (darnel weed) are the people belonging to Satan. The enemy who sowed the thistles among the wheat is the devil. The enemy sowed in a field which was not his. Inspite of the fact that the world belongs to Christ, at the present moment evil still prevails in the world. The enemy is deceitful and cunning, he sowed his seeds while the servants slept.
Sleep can refer to laziness and Jesus warns all to be alert. Watchfulness was not lacking and the blame for the mixed field went not to the servants, but to the insight of the enemy choosing to do his work of sowing the wicked among the good in the darkness of night. The servants were not neglectful but the enemy was stealthy and malicious. Satan sowed seed accompanying the Children of The Kingdom of God, the good seed, the wheat. What he sowed were weeds, (bearded darnel) which is botanically close to wheat and difficult to distinguish from it when the plants are young. The roots of the two plants entangle themselves around each other; but when the heads of grain appear on the wheat, there is no doubt which plant is which. The enemy sowed weed among the wheat, the growing plants gradually become identifiable, and the servants tell their master about the weeds.
Wheat is a wholesome grain which ripens by absorbing light, it is good food. Darnel is poisonous grain, if eaten it is very bitter and causes sickness, and is useless as a food. The difference by appearance is that darnel grain has a black spot at it tip.
The evidence to the servants showed them that the owner is the Lord Jesus. The owner blames an enemy but the owner forbids his servants from attempting to separate weed from wheat till the harvest.
All live together in the world until the end of the age. To the inhabitants of the Judea and Galilee who were Jewish disciples at the time, this came as a stunning proclamation, since they assumed the coming of the Kingdom of God would mean only the destruction of the Gentile wicked.
The people of the Kingdom live side by side with the people of the evil one in the world until God's Harvest Time. The time of separation the weeds from the wheat will come, when the angels, not men, will secure the wheat in barns. Then, as the workers reap the field, only the wheat will be united and secure. The weeds, apparently so plentiful, must first be gathered up and burned and can contaminate the wheat no longer. After the weeds are gathered they are taken to burn in the furnace.
Jesus said the harvest is at the end of this world age and the reapers are the angels who will separate all that causes sin and all who do evil, they will be thrown into the fiery furnace.
Harvest is a common metaphor for the final judgement. The Lord Jesus Christ will make the right distinctions at the end. The parable does not address the church situation at all but explains how the Kingdom can be present in the world while not yet wiping out all of its opposition. All must await the harvest. This deals with eschatological expectation.
The weeds symbolise lost souls, and what a difference await the harvested wheat, gathered from all over the world into the Father's house (the barn), for all eternity.
The tares represent worldly wisdom, pride, procrastination and they resemble Christians, but are Christless, moulding their character by Satan's prompting. Seeds of corruption can be found in all walks of life in society, among the forms of government, education as well as in the home.
The parable of the sower shows that though the kingdom will increase amid hard hearts, competing pressures, and even failure, it will produce an abundant crop, for the gates of hell shall not prevail against the growth of The Church.
Peter was told by Jesus that he was wheat, and that Satan wanted to sift him, hoping to bring him and other disciples to spiritual ruin, but Jesus had prayed for him and others that they might stand. Jesus sows His believers among the nations of the world.
The present time is the age of God's grace, when sinners can be restored into saints.
The parable of The Wheat and The Tares (weeds) illustrates an aspect of the truth. Those who have responded to the good news of God's present reign in Jesus' Christ and those who have not.
The Godly shall shine as the sun in their Father's Kingdom.
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