This Sunday we have three parables of the Kingdom of Heaven to reflect up on. The first is the parable of the weeds among the wheat, the second is the parable of the mustard seed and the third is the parable of the yeast. To understand these parables we need to grasp the meaning of God’s kingdom. “Kingdom” in the Gospel does not refer to a place, either here or hereafter. The kingdom of God refers to the ‘kingship’, or ‘reign’, or ‘rule ‘of God. The Kingdom is primarily an environment, it is a set of relationships and it is a situation where God’s values prevail.
Jesus in the parable of the darnel (weeds among the wheat) speaks about the deceptive and disguised friendship (Matthew13: 24-30) of the devil. The darnel grows like the weed. Both look alike. It is very hard to sort them out. Not only they grow together but also they intertwine their roots, as if they are the same plants. If the weed is pulled off the wheat also gets uprooted. The weeds grow better as they share the rich soil and water of the wheat, and they choke them to be malnourished and make them fruitless. If the darnel is not separated and harvested along with wheat, darnel seeds can cause poisoning, vomiting and giddiness. The weeds were sown by the enemy.
As we reflect up on the parable of the darnel we have to be careful about our friendship. All that leads astray seems to be more attractive and appealing. Sometimes it is through the media, or through the pamphlets and brochures that challenge and ridicule our faith, or at times through certain fun groups, or false spiritual groups the devil try to stay along with us. False claims of miracles and magnificent benefits allure us. The devil is like some groups that take more pain and time to care for us, meet us and listen to us, but their ulterior motive is to make us subservient to their self-interest. It is just like a person who wins few times in the casino getting excited to gamble until he loses everything.
We frequently hear people criticize the Catholic Church for being too strict, too demanding. We often hear people clamant for the relaxation of church rules about divorce, abortion, contraception, priestly celibacy, homosexuality, and pre-marital sex. All what they aim is an immoral society, broken families, lawlessness, broken relationships and victory for their self-interests. We are fallen humanity, already we have an inclination to sin, if we are not watchful, the enemy will easily deceive us. The enemy continues to sow seeds of deceit, falsehood, and lawlessness into our belief. He confuses us with the appearance. He leads us to the worship of false gods until he ensures that we yield to his will or destroy ourselves.
Though the beginnings of the Kingdom of God are small like the mustard seed, if we are faithful to the spirit and values of the Kingdom, the kingdom of God grows and spreads despite of the threats and dangers. Like the yeast in the dough, a Kingdom community, even though very small, can exert a real influence on the growth of the environment of which it is fully a part and be instrumental in spreading Kingdom values as the accepted values.
“You must not treat with consideration a love which is so contrary to the love of God.” St. Francis de Sales