All From a Mustard Seed
Posted: Wednesday, January 20
Verse of the day:
Here is another illustration Jesus used: “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a mustard seed planted in a field. 32 It is the smallest of all seeds, but it becomes the largest of garden plants; it grows into a tree, and birds come and make nests in its branches. (Matthew 13:31-32)
In this parable you will notice there is the sower, the field in which he sowed, and the seed that is sown—in this case, a mustard seed. And then there is the tree which grows from it. A tree where the birds make their nests in its branches. As with other parables Jesus intends that we understand what these symbols mean in terms of what is happening in the world.
It is easy to interpret the first two symbols. The sower is Jesus himself. In each of the parables in this chapter He has been sowing—in the second parable He told us, "The sower is the Son of man." The field symbolizes the world, (again, as outlined in the chapter).
What Jesus planted was a seed, in this case a mustard seed. The use of various seeds is His way of indicating various aspects of the great message He turned loose in the world. In one case it is like wheat which, if received in good soil, will grow up to a true harvest. Then why mustard seed?
Mustard develops from a peculiar kind of seed and has an unusual quality. This is what Jesus wanted them/us to understand. Mustard has the quality of pungency—it is biting, irritating and disturbing. It is known to be an irritant, something fiery, stirring up the blood. Jesus uses this symbol to indicate that the message of the kingdom of God is intended to be arousing, abrasive, even disturbing among men. Turn it loose, and it will get a whole community/world excited, stirred up—either negatively or positively—but make no mistake, it will get a reaction and start the conversation.
When relating to the Church in comparison to the business of our complex world, the gospel doesn’t look like much—doesn’t sound like much. So the world is not very excited about it, or impressed with it. The world does not regard it as a tremendous, earth-shaking philosophy. BUT, let someone actually believe it, invest it into their lives, and plant that small kernel of faith—THEN see what happens. Let them really trust Jesus and invite him into their heart and it is the most transforming, revolutionary thing that can happen to them/us—and to think, it all started from something as small as a mustard seed.