Lance Haverkamp – February 28th, 2016
The Parable of the Sower:
That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea. Such great crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat there, while the whole crowd stood on the beach. And he told them many things in parables, saying: “Listen! A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell on the path, and the birds came and ate them up. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and they sprang up quickly, since they had no depth of soil. But when the sun rose, they were scorched; and since they had no root, they withered away. Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. Other seeds fell on good soil and brought forth grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. Let anyone with ears listen!”
The Parable of the Sower Explained
The Parable of the sower teaches us the importance of the condition of our hearts for the word of God to bear fruit in our lives. If our hearts do not understand the word of God , the devil will take away the word of God from our hearts . We must pay close attention when we hear the word of the God so that we can understand clearly what the Lord is saying to us . Otherwise the word of God will not have any effect in our lives. If our hearts are like stony ground , we may receive the word of God with joy , but we will not endure long because we cannot endure trials and tribulations and we will fall away. If our hearts are like thorny ground , the word of God that we receive will be choked by the thorns such as the worries of life and the deceitfulness of wealth and the word of God sown in our hearts will not bear fruit. But if our hearts are like good ground, we will receive the word of God in truth and honesty and we will keep the word in our hearts and bear fruit with patience . We must examine the condition of our hearts if we are not experiencing the power of the word of God . Instead of doubting the faithfulness of the promises of God , we must prepare our hearts to become good soil for the word of God to bear fruit in our lives.
The Parable of Weeds among the Wheat
He put before them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to someone who sowed good seed in his field; but while everybody was asleep, an enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and then went away. So when the plants came up and bore grain, then the weeds appeared as well. And the slaves of the householder came and said to him, ‘Master, did you not sow good seed in your field? Where, then, did these weeds come from?’ He answered, ‘An enemy has done this.’ The slaves said to him, ‘Then do you want us to go and gather them?’ But he replied, ‘No; for in gathering the weeds you would uproot the wheat along with them.
Jesus Explains the Parable of the Weeds
Then he left the crowds and went into the house. And his disciples approached him, saying, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds of the field.” He answered, “The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man; the field is the world, and the good seed are the children of the kingdom; the weeds are the children of the evil one, and the enemy who sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are angels. Just as the weeds are collected and burned up with fire, so will it be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will collect out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all evildoers, and they will throw them into the furnace of fire, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Let anyone with ears listen!
The Parable of the weeds teaches us that the enemy may plant weeds in the field of the Lord . We should not be surprised to find evil doers in the midst of the people of God . This is the work of the devil . However the Lord will allow these weeds to remain in the field till the end of the age when he will send his angels to separate these weeds from the wheat and throw all the weeds into the furnace. We must be patient when evil doers and the wicked are not destroyed immediately.
The Parable of the Mustard Seed
He put before them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that someone took and sowed in his field; it is the smallest of all the seeds, but when it has grown it is the greatest of shrubs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.”
The parable of the mustard seed teaches us that in the Kingdom of God , the beginning may be small but the end will be abundant . We should not despise small beginnings . The Lord begins his work in a small way but will cause it to grow abundantly . When we are faithful in the little responsibilities , the Lord will give us great tasks to fulfill.
The Parable of the Yeast
He told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed in with three measures of flour until all of it was leavened.”
The Parable of the Yeast teaches us the danger of allowing corrupting influences in our lives . A little yeast can leaven the whole lump. The Lord warns us of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees which is their false doctrines and their hypocrisy. The Lord warns us not to take sin lightly as it will soon destroy us completely.
Other theologians say the yeast represents sin, stating that a little sin will soon destroy us completely.
Treasure & Pearls
“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which someone found and hid; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.”
“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it.”
The Parable of the Treasure hidden in the field teaches us the work of Christ the Messiah for His chosen people , the children of Israel . The Jews are His chosen people and the Lord has paid a great price for their redemption. His great plan for his chosen people will soon be fulfilled. We can also learn from this parable that the treasures of the Kingdom of God are attainable only by those who are willing to pay the price and are willing to sacrifice everything to attain them. The treasures of the Kingdom of God are not for those who live a superficial life reaching out only for those things which are free and easy . The treasures can be obtained only by digging deep . Only when we reach the depths of intimacy in our walk with God , we will obtain the treasures of the Kingdom of God.
The Parable of the pearl of great value teaches us the great price that Christ paid for His Church . Christ loved the church and gave everything that he had and purchased the church with His own blood. We can also learn from this parable the great value of knowing Christ intimately and that we can sacrifice everything for this great privilege. The Apostle Paul realized the great treasure that he gained in knowing Christ intimately that he considered everything he sacrificed for the sake of knowing Christ as loss and rubbish.
The Parable of the Net:
“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was thrown into the sea and caught fish of every kind; when it was full, they drew it ashore, sat down, and put the good into baskets but threw out the bad. So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come out and separate the evil from the righteous and throw them into the furnace of fire, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
The Parable of the Net teaches us of the day of Judgment at the end of the age when the angels will separate the wicked from the righteous . Surely there is a reward for the righteous. We need not be disheartened when we see the wicked prosper in this world . The Lord is faithful to reward those who walked before Him uprightly and He will surely punish those who walked in wickedness and iniquity.
We didn’t talk about the Parable of the Wedding Feast, so here’s an article that presents an unusual take on that parable. This is an interpretation based on the idea that the “End of the Age” was about the end of the Old Covenant–rather than then end of creation. This is something I agree with, but gets me labeled as a heretic by many: http://revelationrevolution.org/matthew-22-1-14-a-preterist-commentary/