Parable of Weeds and Wheat–Jesus taught about the kingdom of heaven through many parables. One of them is the parable of weeds and wheat. Through this parable he wanted to reveal the secret of the kingdom of heaven. Now let us study about the parable and find out what is the hidden message in the parable.
The Parable of Weeds and Wheat
Matthew 13:24 Jesus told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. 25 But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away. 26 When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared. 27 “The owner’s servants came to him and said, ‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the weeds come from?’ 28 “‘An enemy did this,’ he replied. “The servants asked him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’ 29 “‘No,’ he answered, ‘because while you are pulling the weeds, you may uproot the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.’”
Parable of Weeds and Wheat–A farmer sowed good seed on the field. But while everybody was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among wheat. When the farmer’s servant asked him if he wanted them to pull the weeds out, he told them to let the weeds grow along with the wheat until the time of harvest. At that time he would separate the weeds from wheat. He will put the weeds into the fire and gather the wheat into his barn. What is the hidden message in this parable?
Explanation of the Parable
Now let us see the meaning of the parable through the teachings of Jesus Christ himself. Since he is the one who spoke this parable, naturally he is the one who can explain everything correctly.
Matthew 13:37 He answered, “The one who sowed the good seed is the Son of Man. 38 The field is the world, and the good seed stands for the people of the kingdom. The weeds are the people of the evil one, 39 and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels. 40 “As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. 41 The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. 42 They will throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 43 Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears, let them hear.
So the farmer was Jesus himself and his enemy who sowed the bad seeds is the devil. The wheat represents the sons of God and the weeds represent the sons of the devil. And he would separate them at the end time. The former will enter the kingdom of heaven and the latter will be put into the fiery furnace, that is, the hell.
Messages Hidden in the Parable
Good Seeds and Bad Seeds
Parable of Weeds and Wheat–Then what kind of messages are hidden in this parable? First, let us think about the seed the farmer sowed. What does the seed represent?
Luke 8:11 This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God.
In another parable of a sower, Jesus teaches that the seed means the words of God. As a spiritual farmer, Jesus himself came and spread good seeds that is the true words of God (the good gospel) for the kingdom of heaven. But later the enemy that is the devil came and scattered the bad seeds or the falsehood (the false gospel) to deceive people and lead them astray.
So those who follows the good gospel becomes the sons of God who can enter into the kingdom of heaven. But those who follows the false gospel or “all who do evil” (evildoers) will be thrown into the blazing furnace. Then what is the blazing furnace which is assigned for evildoers at the end time? That must be the hell. Let us confirm through the words of Jesus.
Evildoers, Those who Disobey the Law of God
Matthew 7:21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
Evildoers cannot get near to the kingdom of heaven where Jesus dwells. This means they will put into the fiery furnace, that is, the hell. Then why are they put into the hell? It is because they did not follow the truth, but they practiced the lawlessness by disobeying the laws of God. In the NKJV version, the evildoers are described as people who does not follow the true words of God.
Matthew 7:23 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness! (NKJV)
In the parable of “Weeds and Wheat,” Jesus said that he would separate the sons of God from the sons of the devil in the end time. Here we can understand he would use the truth or the true gospel as the standard for the separation. Therefore, through this parable we can understand that knowing the true gospel is extremely important to enter the kingdom of heaven.
What is the True Gospel?
Parable of Weeds and Wheat–Today, there are so many different churches, and different doctrines. Every denominations, even every church or every individual seems to have a different opinion about the words of God. Since the truth is one, we can easily conclude that all other teachings except for the one truth are all false gospels or, in other words, the weeds.
Then how can we find the truth among so many different teachings? Let us go back to the parable. In the parable, when did the devil come and start to work spreading the bad seeds? The parable says that the devil began to work when “everyone was sleeping”. Spiritually, sleeping means death.
John 11:11 After he had said this, he went on to tell them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep; but I am going there to wake him up.” 12 His disciples replied, “Lord, if he sleeps, he will get better.” 13 Jesus had been speaking of his death, but his disciples thought he meant natural sleep. 14 So then he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead.”
Parabolically, sleeping means death. In other words, Jesus was foretelling the appearance of the devil after his death through the parable. Even though he preached the good gospel (truth) to the world during his ministry, after the death of Jesus and his disciples the devil started to work by spreading the falsehood.
The True Church Obeying the Truth
Parable of Weeds and Wheat–Therefore, the true church is the church which follows true words of God taught by Jesus and his disciples while they were living. And teachings taught after the death of Jesus and his disciples must be weeds or the falsehood.
Ephesians 2:19 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone.
When we follows the truth or good seeds, we will be considered as sons of God and receive salvation. When we practice the lawlessness, however, God will vanish us from heaven to the eternal condemnation in the hell. Therefore, to know and practice the laws of God are essential for the salvation. Then how can we know which is true or false?
To find the truth we must go back to the time when Jesus and his disciples were living and working spreading the good seeds. Then how can we go back to the time? We must have a spiritual time machine to go back to the time: that is, the bible. The bible records the teachings of Jesus and disciples. Therefore, through the bible we can go back to the time before the devil started to work by spreading the false gospel.
Continue reading from Part Two of the Parable of Weeds