S4E3: The Parable of the Weeds

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In this episode, we explore the parable of the wheat and the tares/weeds, the parable of the mustard seed, and the parable of the leaven. In light of common Jewish apocalyptic expectations, these parables all communicate a common theme of the flourishing of the wicked in this age and God’s patient response toward evil. Rather than positive parables speaking of the growth of a spiritualized kingdom, these parables are primarily negative in tone meant to indict pride and hypocrisy in light of the coming judgment.

Show notes

  • Reviewing the phrase “the kingdom of heaven” and the agricultural metaphor – Tg. Ezekiel 7:6-7; Tg. Zechariah 14:9; 4 Ezra 8:41 (5:37)
  • Interpreting the parable of the weeds – Matthew 13:36-43 (12:20)
  • The parable is not a radical redefinition of Jewish apocalyptic eschatology – 2 Baruch 54:15-21 (20:57)
  • The parables of the yeast and mustard seed – Matthew 13:31-33; Luke 12:1; 1 Corinthians 5:6-8; Galatians 5:7-9; Daniel 4:12; Ezekiel 17:23; 4 Ezra 4:30-31 (23:29)
  • “Growing”, “expanding”, and “spreading” are words never associated with “the kingdom” – Isaiah 9:7 (34:51)