What do wheat, treasure, fish, yeast, and pearls have in common?

Many people think that Jesus spoke in parables to make his points more easily understood. There are, of course, situations when this kind of reasoning applies. For example: When Jesus said, “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?” (Mt 7:3). The speck refers to another person’s insignificant faults, and the plank refers to our own, more serious, deficiencies. This is an example where a parable is used to aid understanding. However, the parables about the secrets of the kingdom of heaven are very different. They are secrets, and they are not given to everyone (Mt 13:10-11). At the first coming the secrets of heaven were given, by Jesus, to the 12 disciples (Mk 4:34).

But what about us today, do we have the true understanding of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven?

How is the kingdom of heaven like yeast, or a mustard seed (Mt 13:31-33)? Or how about hidden treasure, or a merchant looking for fine pearls (Mt 13:44-46)? What is the barn where the harvested wheat is gathered (Mt 13:29-30)? Or the basket where the good fish are collected (Mt 13:48)?

Jesus promised a time is coming when he will no longer use figurative language, but will speak plainly about the Father (Jn 16:25), and that through the Counselor, whom the Father will send in Jesus’ name, we will be taught all things (Jn 14:26). Many Christians believe the Counselor, referred to in John 14:26, is the Holy Spirit which was sent after Jesus’ ascension, and that when you become a Christian this Holy Spirit enters you. But if that is the case how come we still cannot clearly and plainly explain all the parables and prophecies recorded in the Bible, and their fulfillment? If we have the Holy Spirit shouldn’t we be able to explain all things? Jesus told us that is why he is sending the Counselor, to explain all things, and remind us of Jesus’ words. Either we have the plain and clear explanations and understanding of ALL of God’s word, or we don’t. But if we don’t, we have to desperately seek true understanding, and find the one with the Spirit of truth – the Counselor (Jn 14:16-17) who can teach us all things!

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” Mt 7:7-8

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One thought on “What do wheat, treasure, fish, yeast, and pearls have in common?

  1. Nicely put. It is too easy to lump all parables together into a common category of aiding understanding. We must remember how Jesus said in Mt 13 that the secrets of the kingdom were given to “you” and not “them.”

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