Monday, April 19, 2010

Weeds and Deception

Weeds and Deception
April 12, 2010
Matthew 13:25 "But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away."

Something ---unintended by God--- happened when Adam and Eve first ate of the forbidden fruit. They came under a curse. Specifically the Bible says, "Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life." The words "painful toil" don't mean that work is part of the curse; it means that our efforts in this world are now cursed and we will have to deal with many obstacles all the days of our lives. For a farmer planting crops, this literally means droughts, floods, weeds, thorns, and pests. But the Lord, when He spoke the words of the curse, was not isolating the curse to the obstacles only pertaining to physical work. The obstacles referenced were an allusion to the spiritual work that will be also be cursed because of sin and Satan's efforts to thwart anything and everything in our lives.

Fast forward from the original sin of Adam and Eve and recall the life of Jesus, which was intended to put an end to the curse. Jesus spoke in parables and used an analogy to the original curse of the ground and painful toil. He said the kingdom of God is like a man who sows a field with good seed. The man, after he had sewn the good seed, went to check on his crops and realized there were weeds among his intended harvest. If you look at the word for weed used in the Bible, it is translated, more correctly, to the word darnel, which is a specific weed that looks just like wheat. In fact, when a darnel seed initially grows, it is virtually indistinguishable when compared to certain wheat or barley. It is a deceptive crop. Only after the darnel starts to grow, is someone able to discern the deception, and at that point it may be too late. In fact, in the parable, Jesus tells us that if this weed is pulled too soon, the farmer may end up destroying his whole harvest.

The most important aspect of Jesus' parable, though, is not just the deceptive weed, but the person who planted it. In the parable, the planter of the deceptive destruction was an enemy. This is easily understood as a reference to Satan, and further along in the story, we end up seeing more than one enemy planting, described as being the sons of Satan. The Bible is very clear that there is an enemy at work in your life and his efforts are not simply focused on the vegetables in your garden. He wants to plant a crop of deception in your life, a life full of weeds that will thwart the intended harvest in your life, both physically and spiritually.

Christian, in a complex world, there is so much room for deception. It can come in many forms, even from seemingly genuine Christians. This potential deception puts your life in jeopardy. It is not enough to go to church and simply listen to what the pastor tells you. You must stay on guard in every area of your life, weighing every action, deed, and thought against what the Scripture says. There will be many Christians who are deceived and I don't want you to become one of them. Staying on guard, in all areas of your life, means a constant vigil of sincerity to your own personal relationship with the Lord, Jesus Christ. There may be a harvest of deception growing in your life at this exact moment, potentially leading you to the grave. It is up to you to identify those weeds, thwarting your harvest of righteousness. If you don't look for them now, it may be too late. Ask the Lord to point out the deception; He surely doesn't want you to have weeds in your garden.

1. In what areas of your life are there potential for weeds?
2. What could that deception look like and how might you identify it?
3. What safeguards can you put in place, protecting you from the planter of deception?

Add. Scriptures for Study: Gen 3:17, Jer 29:8, Matt 13, Matt 24:4, 5, 11, 24, Rom 7:11, 2 Cor 11:3, James 1:22, Rev 20:10

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