Parable of the Wheat and the Weeds
This week we’re exploring the Parable of the Wheat and the Weeds. Found in Matthew 13, this parable tells a story of how Jesus, the Sower, has sown believers, which are the good seed, represented as wheat, into the world. Our enemy, the devil has also sown bad seed, his followers, into the world, represented as weeds (false wheat).
According to the parable, the immediate response of Jesus’s servants is to uproot the weeds because of the negative attributes of weeds. However, in their infancy, it’s difficult to tell the wheat from the weeds, making uprooting a risky venture for the true wheat. So, Jesus tells the servants that both the good seeds and the bad seeds must grow together until the end of the age and then, separation will come… and with it, their expected end. I encourage you to read Matthew 13:24-30 and 36-43 for the entire story.
So, what does this mean? Christians often wonder why the righteous (wheat) and the unrighteous (false wheat) co-exist in this world. Here, we see that this is part of God’s plan: the wheat and the weeds must occupy the world together. Sometimes it can be distressing to Christians as we live out Christ’s mandates in a world that has no appreciation or even consideration of Godliness or Godly principles. What seems worse is that the unrighteous appear to be ever prospering, sometimes at what seems a faster rate than believers. But remember what weeds do: they grow fast; they reproduce in abundance; they compete for the basic necessities of life; and the “choke out” or suffocate good plants. When we don’t understand our purpose in the world and our expected end, it is easy to lose heart.
Jesus prayed to the Father about His disciples as He was preparing to be crucified. These are some of His final words:
John 17: 15-20 NLT
15 I’m not asking you to take them out of the world, but to keep them safe from the evil one. 16 They do not belong to this world any more than I do. 17 Make them holy by your truth; teach them your word, which is truth. 18 Just as you sent me into the world, I am sending them into the world. 19 And I give myself as a holy sacrifice for them so they can be made holy by your truth.20 “I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me through their message.
We’re in the world to be ambassadors of Jesus Christ. Our mandate as ambassadors is to shine the light of Jesus Christ for all the world to see. The world is better off because the righteous are in it. Jesus said that we are to be in the world, but not of the world. [John 15] We don’t have to compromise our morality and Godly principles to be in the world. We simply need to understand our mandate and remember to whom we belong.God desires the righteous to become those “trees” planted by the rivers of water that bring forth fruit in their season.[Ps 1] The hope is the more fruitful the righteous are in the world, the less impact unrighteous will have. The more light we shine in the world, the less dark the world will be. As long as we are in the world, there is hope of converting false wheat. God’s Word reminds us that He is not wanting any to perish but He desires that all come to repentance. In the end, when God has had His fill of it, He will have His angels gather the weeds for destruction. So, as the Apostle Paul encouraged, while you’re in the world, live clean, innocent lives, shining like bright lights among the weeds. [Phil 2:15]