Matthew 13:24-30(HCSB)24 He presented another parable to them: “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field. 25 But while people were sleeping, his enemy came, sowed weeds among the wheat, and left. 26 When the plants sprouted and produced grain, then the weeds also appeared. 27 The landowner’s slaves came to him and said, ‘Master, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Then where did the weeds come from?’ 28 “ ‘An enemy did this!’ he told them. “ ‘So, do you want us to go and gather them up?’ the slaves asked him. 29 “ ‘No,’ he said. ‘When you gather up the weeds, you might also uproot the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest. At harvest time I’ll tell the reapers: Gather the weeds first and tie them in bundles to burn them, but store the wheat in my barn.’ ”
The New American Commentary: Matthew 13:24–30 Jesus is apparently speaking to the crowds again (cf. v. 36). Many are no doubt wondering: If the kingdom of heaven has arrived, why has it not triumphed more obviously and widespread? If Jesus is its proclaimer, why is response to him not more positive from all? In the narrative of I Maccabees, after Antiochus IV issued his decrees forbidding Jewish religious practice, a rural Jewish priest from Modiin, Mattathias the Hasmonean, sparked the revolt against the Seleucid Empire by refusing to worship the Greek gods. Mattathias killed a Hellenistic Jew who had stepped forward to take Mattathias’s place in sacrificing to an idol. Afterwards, he and his five sons fled to the wilderness of Judah. After Mattathias’s death about one year later in 166 BC, his son Judas Maccabee led an army of Jewish dissidents to victory over the Seleucid dynasty in guerrilla warfare, which at first was directed against Hellenized Jews, of whom there were many. The Maccabees destroyed pagan altars in the villages, circumcised boys and forced Hellenized Jews into outlawry. The term “Maccabees” used to describe the Jewish army is taken from the Hebrew word for “hammer”.
The revolt itself involved many battles, After the victory, the Maccabees entered Jerusalem in triumph and ritually cleansed the Temple, (because the Abomination of Desolation that happened when Antiochius IV sacrificed a pig in the temple and made the Jews eat it)of the reestablishing traditional Jewish worship there and installing Jonathan Maccabee as high priest. A large Seleucid army was sent to quash the revolt, but returned to Syria on the death of Antiochus IV. Beforehand, Judas Maccabbeus made an agreement with Rome and became allied, tying the hands of the weaker Seleucid Empire. Hannukah Celebrates this revolt.
Then another revolt happened ion 66-73 AD which led to the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem, then another happened in 135AD which was sparked by Simon Bar Kokhba who said he was the real messiah. He led the revolt against the Roman empire which led to the Jews being exiled out of Israel in 135 until 1948.
At the agricultural level, the story is not very realistic, although sabotage did occasionally occur. But the meaning, of course, remains at the spiritual level. The weeds (zizania) are more literally darnel, often at first indistinguishable from wheat. Just as the wheat and weeds were often superficially similar in appearance and if sown too close to each other were too intermingled in their root systems to be pulled up separately, so too God’s people are sometimes outwardly hard to distinguish from his enemies. They can be too interconnected with them in society for anyone to try to purify the world from evil without hurting those who are good. Nevertheless, in Jesus’ society many Zealots, and at times even his disciples (cf. Luke 9:54), were often eager for precisely this to happen. Jesus warns them they must wait for the final judgment.
Jesus’ principle here applies in every age to the question of why God allows evil and suffering in the world. His creation can be purged of all evil only through the judgment and re-creation of the universe at the end of the age because evil resides in every person. God’s delay in bringing the end of the world is thus entirely gracious, giving people more opportunity to repent (2 Pet 3:9).
Jesus is showing the disciples the extent of the grace and mercy the Father shows humanity. He could in His justice and righteousness send everyone to hell and not give anyone a chance. However He is a patient God.
God is Patient, Shows Grace and Mercy and is above all Righteous.
- God is Patient with us in our sins.
2 Peter 3:8-13(HCSB)8 Dear friends, don’t let this one thing escape you: With the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day. 9 The Lord does not delay His promise, as some understand delay, but is patient with you, not wanting any to perish but all to come to repentance. 10 But the Day of the Lord will come like a thief; u on that day the heavens will pass away with a loud noise, the elements will burn and be dissolved, and the earth and the works on it will be disclosed. 11 Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, it is clear what sort of people you should be in holy conduct and godliness 12 as you wait for and earnestly desire the coming of the day of God. The heavens will be on fire and be dissolved because of it, and the elements will melt with the heat. 13 But based on His promise, we wait for the new heavens and a new earth, where righteousness will dwell.
The patience of God toward us is absolutely mesmerizing. We can see God’s patience in dealing with Adam and Eve as they fall into sin and as He grants the initial revelation of His covenant of grace. We see the patience of God with the patriarchs and Israel, even with their grumbling in the wilderness. We see His patience throughout the Gospels as Jesus, the Son of God, is being rejected and forsaken. And we see His patience in the establishment of the church in the New Testament. We see His patience in the ups and doens of the church throughout history. He could have wiped us out in our sin but yet while we were still sinners Christ died for us. Romans 5:8(HCSB)God would have been just to kill us straight out the womb. But in His patience He gives us time to hear the gospel and repent.
God displays patience and forbearance with the world. But patience and forbearance ought to lead men and women to repentance. Instead, it encourages unbelievers in their sinful rebellion and mocking of God, and the patience of God is then turned into a rationing in their minds to rebel further against God. This does nothing more than store up greater judgment because of their ungodly response to His kind patience.
Romans 2:4-5(HCSB) 4 Or do you despise the riches of His kindness,restraint, and patience, not recognizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance? 5 But because of your hardness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath, when God’s righteous judgment is revealed.
- God is full of Grace and Mercy
Mercy and grace are often confused. The difference: mercy is God not punishing us as our sins deserve, and grace is God blessing us despite the fact that we do not deserve it. Mercy is deliverance from judgment. Grace is extending kindness to the unworthy.
According to the Bible, we have all sinned Romans 3:23(HCSB) 23 For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. As a result of that sin, we all deserve death and hell. (Romans 6:23(HCSB) 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. With that in mind, every day we live is an act of God’s mercy. If God gave us all what we deserve, we would all be, right now, condemned for eternity. David cries out in Psalm 51:1-2(ESV)”Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions. Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.” A plea to God for mercy is asking Him to withhold the judgment we deserve and instead grant to us the forgiveness we in no way have earned.
We deserve nothing from God. God does not owe us anything. Anything good that we experience is a result of the grace of God (Ephesians 2:5). Grace is simply defined as unmerited favor. God gives us good things that we do not deserve and could never earn. Rescued from judgment by God’s mercy, grace is anything and everything we receive beyond that mercy (Romans 3:24(HCSB) 24 They are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus. Common grace refers to the sovereign grace which God bestows on all of mankind regardless of their spiritual standing before Him, while saving grace is that special type of grace whereby God sovereignly bestows unmerited divine assistance through the Holy Spirit upon His elect for their regeneration and sanctification.
- God is Righteous
Some say God is just and fair, if God were completely “fair,”, we would all spend eternity in hell paying for our sin, which is exactly what we deserve. If we “fairly” received what we deserve, we would end up in the lake of fire. The righteousness of God, one of the most prominent attributes of God in the Scriptures, is also one of the most elusive. Initially, distinguishing the righteousness of God from His holiness or His goodness seems difficult. In addition, the righteousness of God is virtually synonymous with His justice:
While the most common Old Testament word for just means ‘straight,’ and the New Testament word means ‘equal,’ in a moral sense they both mean ‘right.’ When we say that God is just, we are saying that He always does what is right, what should be done, and that He does it consistently, without partiality or prejudice. The word just and the word righteous are identical in both the Old Testament and the New Testament. Sometimes the translators render the original word ‘just’ and other times ‘righteous’ with no apparent reason (cf. Nehemiah 9:8 and 9:33 where the same word is used). But whichever word they use, it means essentially the same thing. It has to do with God’s actions. They are always right and just. Psalm 119:137-138(HCSB) 137 You are righteous, Lord, and Your judgments are just. 138 The decrees You issue are righteous and altogether trustworthy. God’s righteousness (or justice) is the natural expression of His holiness. If He is infinitely pure, then He must be opposed to all sin, and that opposition to sin must be demonstrated in His treatment of His creatures. When we read that God is righteous or just, we are being assured that His actions toward us are in perfect agreement with His holy nature.
Deuteronomy 32:4(HCSB) The Rock—His work is perfect; all His ways are entirely just. A faithful God, without prejudice, He is righteous and true. God always acts righteously; His every action is consistent with His character. God is always consistently “Godly.” God is not defined by the term “righteous,” as much as the term “righteous” is defined by God. God is not measured by the standard of righteousness; God sets the standard of righteousness.
Psalm 96:11-13(HCSB) Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice; let the sea and all that fills it resound.12 Let the fields and everything in them exult. Then all the trees of the forest will shout for joy 13 before the Lord, for He is coming—for He is coming to judge the earth.
He will judge the world with righteousness and the peoples with His faithfulness.
Jesus reserves an interpretation of the specific details of the passage for a more private audience with his disciples. Jesus Interprets the Wheat and the Weeds.
Matthew 13:36-43(HCSB) 36 Then He dismissed the crowds and went into the house. His disciples approached Him and said, “Explain the parable of the weeds in the field to us.”
37 He replied: “The One who sows the good seed is the Son of Man; 38 the field is the world; and the good seed—these are the sons of the kingdom. The weeds are the sons of the evil one, 39 and the enemy who sowed them is the Devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels. 40 Therefore, just as the weeds are gathered and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. 41 The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather from His kingdom everything that causes sin and those guilty of lawlessness. 42 They will throw them into the blazing furnace where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 43 Then the righteous will shine like the sun in their Father’s kingdom. Anyone who has ears should listen!
From the actions of the farmer and the fate of the wheat and weeds, we learn that God will permit the righteous and wicked to coexist in this age but that he will eventually separate the wicked, judge them, and destroy them, while gathering the righteous together to be rewarded by enjoying his presence forever. This event will happen at one time everyone will be harvested together and separated at judgement.
Revelation 20:11-15 (ESV) Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.