Matthew 13:31-33, 44-52

Commentary Excerpt by Tom Boomershine

First of all, these parables, including the parable of the net, are fun! They are parables of delight. The parable of the net is the only emotionally ambiguous story in the series. But I remember sorting shrimp from the jelly fish and other junk that came up from the floor of Currituck bay in North Carolina on a shrimp boat. And it was fun. It is even more fun when it is a metaphor for the celebration of long awaited justice for the righteous and punishment for the wicked in world history. This is then the spirit of these parables. They are parables of joy and celebration of the mysteries of the kingdom of God in the world.

The first two parables contrast small and large. The mustard seed and the yeast may be small but they have a major impact. The contrast is between the little bit of the seed and the yeast and the sheer size of their effect. The next two episodes are parables of treasure. Someone discovers a treasure of great value and invests everything to buy that one thing of great value.

The last parable is the parable of the net followed by its interpretation in relation to the kingdom of God at the end of the age. The metaphor is a fisherman’s metaphor that refers to the everyday experiences of fishermen who worked on and around the Sea of Galilee.The interpretation relates this everyday experience to the sorting that will take place at the final coming of the Kingdom of God.

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