Parables of the Kingdom

The Sower James Tissot, Brooklyn Museum

Jesus answers the opposition described in chapters 11-12 in Matthew’s gospel with a series of parables that begin with the parable of the sower sowing his seed. (Chapter 13) The seed doesn’t always fall on good ground, he reminds his disciples. Sometimes it falls on the path where it quickly dries up– like the  towns that welcome him enthusiastically and soon forget him.

The parable of the weeds and the wheat points to enemies who want to poison the power and beauty of his words and deeds because of their own claims.  The Pharisees did that.

The kingdom of God comes in smallness. It’s like the mustard seed, not a full grown tree. You can miss it if  you’re looking for something fully grown and done. The treasure is hidden in a field; you may discover almost accidentally. Maybe Jesus’ own extended family in Nazareth still saw him as just the little boy they knew before and could not appreciate him now. We underestimate small things and  what they can grow to be.

But the kingdom of heaven is also like a merchant in search of fine pearls. You have to keep searching for it all your life. You can’t give up that search. Keep looking, hoping searching.

Jesus concludes his teaching with the parable of the net cast into the sea that catches fish of every kind, good and bad. At the end of time, the net will be dragged to shore and the good will be separated from the bad. God is the ultimate judge, leave judgment to him.

His parables are about the real world, the world Jesus experienced. They also help us look at the world we live in, which is not far from his.

2 thoughts on “Parables of the Kingdom

  1. cenaclemary12

    Thanks for your message on the miracle of five loaves and two fish! Reminds me of song “The Turning” which says My God my all though I am small you do great things in me!” Get the song on you tube and listen to this tune.


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