Jesus described the kingdom of God like a field in which weeds grow together with the wheat. The suggestion to pull up the weeds would also mean to uproot the wheat. So the farmer in the parable decides to let the weeds and the wheat grow side by side until they are separated at the harvest (Matthew 13:24-30).
Jesus also described the kingdom of God like a net that catches good and bad fish alike. Because fishermen don’t have the luxury of preselecting what they haul up from the waters, they instead must sort out the keepers only after they bring up the net with the day’s catch (Matthew 13:47-51).
A distressing reality
There’s no escaping the clear point of these parables: The kingdom of God on earth is a remarkably messy affair. What is true and noble and right will exist side by side with what is false and coarse and wrong.
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Author: Caleb Bassett
Volume 107, Number 08
Issue: August 2020