Wheat and Tares

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Wheat and Tares – 12 April 2008

In Matthew 13 of the New Testament Jesus teaches by using parables or allegories – short stories that illustrate spiritual or moral principles. One of those parables uses “wheat” and “tares” (undesirable weeds): the “wheat” are the people who, upon hearing the Word of God, allow themselves to be changed and begin to grow spiritually. The “tares” are those who, for one reason or another, choose to turn their backs on the truth, harden their hearts, and end up spiritually worse than they started out.

Concerning spiritual growth that brings one closer to God’s ideals, Jesus has this to say to His disciples (Matthew 13:12):

12 To those who are open to my teaching, more understanding will be given, and they will have an abundance of knowledge. But to those who are not listening, even what they have will be taken away from them.
~ New Living Translation

Another Bible translation expresses Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 13:12 this way:

12 "For whoever has, to him shall more be given, and he shall have an abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him.
~ New American Standard Bible

I can see where this translation can be misapplied by those caught up in the physical “health and wealth” mentality of some churches, ignoring the spiritual abundance, or growth, about which Jesus was most concerned and is clearly expressed in His Beatitudes (Matthew 5:3-11). After all, when it comes to material goods, as the saying goes: “You can’t take it with you.” The “wheat” who open their eyes and ears to the compassionate teachings of Jesus will enjoy a place in heaven beyond anything that the “tares” can imagine.
 


"Joyful Curmudgeon"
An oxymoron?
No! I see all the beauty of God's creation and I'm joyful.  At the same time, I see all the suffering and corruption going on in the world, and feel called to help expose and end it so that we may have true peace and compassion.

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