Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Leaven, Hidden Treasure, a Pearl and a Dragnet

Matthew 13:33,44,47-50 - Another parable He spoke to them: The kingdom of heaven is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal till it was all leavened. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and for joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a dragnet that was cast into the sea and gathered some of every kind, which, when it was full, they drew to shore; and they sat down and gathered the good into vessels, but threw the bad away.
Boy, I really bounced around with these parables!! There are several smaller ones that I lumped together. Let me just remind you that the Kingdom of Heaven is not for everyone. This is why Jesus told these parables. I believe they were spoken in various ways that if one was not understood, another might. Just my thought.
So here we have a parable about leaven. Leaven, as you know, expands. When anyone truly receives Jesus and the Word of God it expands one's heart and within one's heart. Then when Christ enters into a person's life it expands the Kingdom of Heaven by and through our new lives and how we have changed, and grown in Christ...and how we share Him that others might enter into the Kingdom.
A hidden treasure or pearl of great value both can bring much joy for which one might be willing to give all to own. When we have a true encounter with Christ it is like finding a hidden treasure or a beautiful pearl, which we would be thrilled to own and willing to give up all we believe to be valuable in our earthly lives. A new life in Christ, knowing what He has done and how He has changed our lives, will do that.
A dragnet catches many fish. This net can catch all sorts of fish but not all are worthy of keeping. The good are kept but the bad are thrown away. That reminds me a bit of the parable of the soils. Some soil is good enough for the seed (Word of God) to grow, other soils are not acceptable enough and the Word dies. If His net has been cast over your life, make the choice to receive His Word and be part of those who will enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.
We who have received should be willing to share what we know. Part of the sharing is explaining the downside to not receiving. If you have seen any of these parable posts, you will understand. It may seem harsh, but Jesus Himself has told us His parables. The outcome is always the same, receive Christ, receive entrance into the Kingdom of Heaven. And, obviously the reverse holds true. There will be a dividing of people at the end of the age. We all will have our place either in the Kingdom of Heaven or the Lake of Fire. Do not allow yourselves to be deceived into believing just by knowing who Jesus is you are safe. If you understand these parables, you have been given an opportunity to seek Him further.
Matthew 13:49-51 - So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come forth, separate the wicked from among the just, and cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth." Jesus said to them, "Have you understood all these things?"

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