Two Kingdoms

Matthew 13:36-43
36 Then he left the crowd and went into the house. His disciples came to him and said, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds in the field.” 37 He answered, “The one who sowed the good seed is the Son of Man. 38 The field is the world, and the good seed stands for the sons of the kingdom. The weeds are the sons of the Evil One, 39 and the enemy who sows them is the Devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels. 40 As the weeds are pulled up 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 weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. 42 They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 43 Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear.”
This parable is serious stuff. When Jesus explains this to the disciples I wonder what their reaction was. Did their eyes get really big? Could they even imagine that the Rabbi they follow was the very one who would send angels to collect the sons of the evil one and deliver them to Hell? Did Thomas really say “I doubt he has angels!” or am I just imagining that? Here is the point. There was some serious and painful self-evaluation that must have taken place.
The parable requires that kind of self-evaluation. It starts off with farmers and crops and harvests and ends up with weeping and gnashing of teeth. But Jesus doesn’t tell stories to scare people, even if this is a little scary. There is a purpose in Jesus explaining this parable to the ones he loves. But what is he telling them?
There are two kingdoms. One is the kingdom of God and the other is the kingdom of the evil one. But the twist to this parable is that the sons of the evil one look just like the sons of God. The sons of the evil one are not twisted and grotesque and obvious, they look just like the ones in the kingdom of God.
But here is the deal: Sometimes the sons of God aren’t sure they are really sons of God and sometimes the sons of the evil one think they are the sons of God. Confusing right?
That’s why this parable is so important. You need to know to which kingdom you belong. There are 2 kingdoms. One of them ends really badly. You need to know which one you are a part of? It is the most important question you will ever answer.
Prayer: Thank you for the assurance of my salvation.