He also said, “This is what the kingdom of God is like. A man scatters seed on the ground. Night and day, whether he sleeps or gets up, the seed sprouts and grows, though he does not know how. All by itself the soil produces grain—first the stalk, then the head, then the full kernel in the head. As soon as the grain is ripe, he puts the sickle to it, because the harvest has come.”
Parallel Text: None
When I was in school, I was pretty good in science. When it was time for the test on seeds and plants and how plants grow, I could recall all the answers to the questions. I could say that the cells in the plants grow and divide, and that the DNA of the plant determines how they will grow and what parts form and all of that, but can I say that I understand how all of this happens; really understand? No.
Maybe you understand it, but I don’t, even though I could explain what I learned about it. Maybe you noticed the subtle difference between knowing about and understanding…
In this parable, Jesus is talking about the Kingdom; after all, He is on the Kingdom Tour… He’s talking up the Kingdom. I know a lot about the Kingdom, and even though there are those who know more about it than I do, I know more than most. Yet, can I say I fully understand it? No, not at all, for there is a component within the Kingdom that I cannot begin to understand fully, even though I know about it: The life power of God.
Down through the years, I have planted a great many seeds, maybe that’s why I do this blogging thing… maybe that’s why you do it, too. I’m not sure that I fully understand it, but I know that if you and I plant enough seeds, a crop will grow, and if we keep our eyes and ears open, we will see and hear evidence that tells us that a portion of the crop is ready for harvest. Hopefully, we’ll decide to get involved in that harvest and help to bring some of it in, along with unknown numbers of others all around the globe, for this is how the Kingdom works. I have harvested many in whom others planted the seeds, and many others have brought in a harvest from seeds I planted; it’s all good!
This is what Jesus is trying to teach here: Plant seeds, lots of seeds. Pay attention, and bring in the harvest when and where the time is ripe. We don’t really need to understand every detail; we just need to plant, pay attention and harvest.