The Parable of the Wheat and Tares by Eddie Foster

Matthew 13:24 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: 25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. 26 But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. 27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? 28 He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? 29 But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.

This is a parable of a man who sowed seed and while he slept the enemy sowed tares among his seeds. As the wheat matured, the servants realized tares were in it. The servants asked him: didst not thou sow good seed in thy field. He did and they knew the enemy had done this but wanted to know if they should pull up the tares. He knew the roots would be entangled together and it would do more harm than good to pull up the tares. He said to leave it alone and the separation would be done at the harvest. The wheat would be kept and the tares burned.  The interpretation of this is given in the following verses.

37 He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; 38 The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one; 39 The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels. 40 As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world. 41 The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; 42 And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. 43 Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.

The sower is Jesus, and we know there is nothing wrong with him or his seed. We’re the good seed in the field of the world. The tares are unbelievers. The enemy is the devil. He was first the enemy of God, then the enemy of the Christian and he’s still our enemy today.  He’s the enemy of everything good. Jesus overcame the enemy on the cross of Calvary. We can live in victory today. The harvest is the end of the world and the reapers are the angels. 

Identify the attack. If I were the devil, I’d get my people in the best churches in the country and make them appear to be the best members of that church. Think about this. A drunk in the gutter is not a good advertisement for the devil. A nice advertisement is a church member sipping cocktails. A man who goes to church Sunday and disregards God the rest of the week is a good advertisement. How many times have you heard this? If that’s a Christian, I’m just as good as they are. It’s not because we’re better; it’s because of our trust in God. We’ll never be good enough except through Jesus Christ. Satan’s greatest work is not the drug addict or prostitute; it’s the tares. Now what is a tare? It’s someone who outwardly projects Christ but inwardly rejects him. A tare cannot be recognized by those who only look on the outside. It can only be determined by one who can look on the inside?  Who are they?  One is you–the person who is the tare.  You know what’s in your heart. You cannot fool yourself and you’ll never fool God. He knows what’s in your heart.  When do tares get sown in the field?  Satan does his work while men sleep. The enemy sowed while they slept. Romans says it’s high time we wake out of sleep. So many negative things happen at night. Most crimes happen at night while people are asleep. John said men love darkness better than light because their deeds are evil.

It was while we were sleeping that prayer and Bible were taken out of schools. We should have stood up against it. So what’s wrong with schools today?  The Bible and prayer have been replaced with other things. Why doesn’t God step in? My answer is because we kicked him out a long time ago. While we were sleeping abortion became acceptable. Life begins at conception. Think of the millions of babies that have been killed.  While we were sleeping–who would have thought we’d see the day when men marry men and women marry women?  It’s still sin. God will forgive it just as he will other sins; but you have to come out the sin you’re in when you accept Jesus as Savior.  While we were sleeping pulpits became filled with preachers who don’t believe the Bible is the infallible and inerrant Word of God. I believe every word of it even if I don’t understand it all. Some don’t believe in the blood atonement. They call it a bloody religion, but without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins.  Without it, we’re still in our sin. Some don’t believe in Jesus Christ’s resurrection. They say he didn’t literally rise from the dead. He literally died; they literally took him down from the cross; they literally buried him. He literally came out of the grave in victory and he’s alive forevermore!  Some don’t believe in hell. Those tares were put in the fire. Luke 16 says its a place where the worm dieth not. All those who reject Jesus Christ will go there. It’s real!  Some Christians are pretty groggy. Even if they aren’t asleep, they’re not awake either. The book of Romans says it is high time to awake. We need to take a definite stand and rise against sin. Cast off the night clothes, those works of darkness, and put on the day clothes. You don’t go to work in the same clothes you slept in. Rise up and put on the day clothes. Stay awake and properly clothed.  Be ready when the devil comes. Wearing the whole armor of God we can combat the devil.  

There will always be a mixed congregation–the tares will be there. Who are they? We don’t know. I could guess one way and the Lord say the opposite. The problem with judgment is we see only the outside. That happened to Samuel when God told him to go to the house of Jesse and anoint the new King of Israel. He looked at Jesse’s sons by their outward appearance and thought this is the one. He wasn’t. God told him that while he looked on the outward appearance he–God–looks on the heart.  Seven sons were refused. The youngest was out with the sheep, where he was supposed to be. His name was David. He was the one. God chose David. We have to accept what we see on the outside since we can’t see the inside.

Church discipline is done by the Word using the bylaws of the church. You’ll get objections if you start to discipline someone. Churches are made of families and it’s ok to discipline another family than your own. But this passage is about salvation, not discipline. When church discipline is handled as it should be, we don’t judge a person’s salvation. When two people have a problem one is to go to the other person, not everyone else. Settle it one on one and it’s done. If you have problems with me, ring my phone. Let’s get it taken care of. Gossip ignites otherwise.  If the one on one doesn’t work, witnesses are to be taken. If that doesn’t work, it is brought before the church. When a person is dismissed, it is merely to show that the church does not condone sin. When the person repents, he/she is to be accepted back with open arms.  

There is coming a time of separation. Verses 42-43 show us this.  The righteous–the blood bought–will go to heaven. Those who reject Christ will go to hell.  Where are the greater percentage of people? The Bible says the straight and narrow road to heaven has few on it while the broad road to hell has many on it. Of all the people on earth, the majority will go to hell.  That’s sad. It doesn’t have to be. Jesus made a way. The ground was made level by the blood of Jesus when he died on the cross.  Everybody can be saved.  I have loved ones and friends who won’t go to heaven with me. Is everyone in your family in the ark of safety?  Only Noah, his wife, their three sons and their wives were saved from the flood by going into the ark. Only those in the safety of Jesus Christ will go to heaven. I’m not perfect but one day I will be. I’ll trade this mortal and corruptible for perfection. I’m on my way to a better land.  How will the future separation affect you and your family?  The best thing you can do is live the life of Christ in front of them. Let your light shine. Get them in through love and prayers. If they don’t get in, there will be a separation. It’s either paradise or torment. Let’s intercede on their behalf.   

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