Which kingdom do you belong to?

Sunday service, Erlo Stegen, 07 February 2016

Matthew 13:24-30

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.

Jesus often spoke in parables. These parables have a deep meaning. By these parables the Lord reveals deep secrets to us.
If one looks at this parable superficially you’ll acknowledge that it has some meaning, but if you study it carefully there’s so much more.
It reveals to us the Kingdom of Heaven. We see here that the Kingdom of Heaven is victorious. His Heavenly Kingdom is blessed and goes from victory to victory and whoever enters is blessed. But whoever refuses to enter is cursed.
His heavenly kingdom isn’t exactly as His kingdom here on earth. There’s a difference. We know that the congregation of believers here on earth is not as in heaven. Here on earth they’re often not one. But not so in the heavenly kingdom, where there is complete unity.
We read here how the enemy came and sowed bad seed at night while everyone was asleep. Take note, the devil works under cover of darkness. God created man and the holy angels and the great arch angels, Michael and Gabriel. But then sin came in. And there was a terrible battle in heaven because of the evil brought in by the devil. We see then that evil doesn’t come from God, but from the devil.
What does the wheat stand for? That’s the good seed, the children of the Kingdom. You as a child of God is the good seed. But those who don’t follow God’s word is like the bad seed sown by the enemy.
It’s off utmost importance that Jesus said, ‘watch and pray’, because the devil works at night and sows his bad seed. God planted His good seed during the day, but the devil works in the darkness.
The servants asked what they must do. They noticed something was wrong. There was bad seed among the good. Should they just pull up the weeds? But the owner answered, ‘no, lest you also uproot the wheat’. They had to wait till harvest and then separate the two.
When it speaks here of good and bad seed, it doesn’t just refer to actual seeds, but rather to good people who are of the Kingdom of Heaven and bad seed, the children of the devil.
You might say that you do not like a certain congregation because of the bad people in it. But you won’t find a church on the face of the earth with only good people in it. Even in the early church we find Ananias and Sapphira (Acts 5) and the widows complaining (Acts 6:1). Whatever church you go to you will find people in their midst living in sin, adultery, stealing, lying, etc. Even if you think you’ve found the perfect church you will find weeds in that church too, people in the church who call themselves Christians who are immoral, steal, lie, slander others, are murderers etc.
Test yourself to see what you are, and then test who your friends are. Maybe your friends are not good people but those that will one day be gathered with the weeds and thrown into the fire. Perhaps you even know about their evil yet you don’t expose it but hide their sin. Then know that you also belong to hell.
Which kingdom do you belong to? The Kingdom of God or the kingdom of the devil? Do you live in the light (1John 1:7)? That will show you to which camp you belong. But the children of the light will shine as the stars for ever and ever (Dan 12:3).
The Bible teaches that the letter kills but the Spirit gives life (2Cor 3:6). True life is in Christ Jesus.
Now you who claim to have life but gossip, participate in idle talk, rather examine yourself whether you truly have everlasting life. Are your works those of the light or the darkness? Can God say of you that you will shine as the stars forever, as we read in Daniel?