The Parables of the Hidden Treasure and the Pearl
44 “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.
45 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. 46 When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.
THINK ABOUT IT
The sinner does not find Christ; Christ finds the sinner. No sinner is able to pay for salvation, even though he sells all that he has. The pearl represents the church.
Unlike most other gems, the pearl is a unity—it cannot be carved like a diamond or emerald. The church is a unity of God’s created who believe what Jesus did to save us. (Eph. 4:4–6). The church is the product of suffering. Christ died for the church (Eph. 5:25) and His suffering on the cross
made possible her birth.
A pearl grows gradually, and the church grows gradually as the Spirit convicts and converts sinners. So, in spite of Satan’s subtle working in this world, Christ is forming His church. He sold all that He had to purchase His church, and nothing Satan can do will cause Him to fail.
There is but one church, a pearl of great price, though there are many local churches. Not everyone who is a member of a local church belongs to the one church, the body of Christ. It is only through repentance and faith in Christ that we become a part of His church. True believers seek to identify with a local assembly where they can worship, learn, grow to serve together, pointing always to Jesus’s saving grace.
The Parable of the Net
47 “Once again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was let down into the lake and caught all kinds of fish. 48 When it was full, the fishermen pulled it up on the shore. Then they sat down and collected the good fish in baskets, but threw the bad away.
49 This is how it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come and separate the wicked from the righteous 50 and throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
51 “Have you understood all these things?” Jesus asked.
“Yes,” they replied.
52 He said to them, “Therefore every teacher of the law who has become a disciple in the kingdom of heaven is like the owner of a house who brings out of his storeroom new treasures as well as old.”
JESUS SHARES THE END OF THE JEWISH AGE
The preaching of the gospel in the world does not convert the world. It is like a huge dragnet that gathers all kinds of fish, some good and some bad. The professing church today has in it both true and false believers (the parable of the weeds)
and good and bad.
At the end of the age, God will separate the true believers from the false and the good from the bad. When Jesus Christ returns to earth to fight the battle of Armageddon (Rev. 19:11.), He will separate believers and unbelievers already on the earth.
When Jesus had completed this series of parables, He asked His disciples if they understood them, and they confidently replied, “Yes, Lord.” Understanding involves responsibility. To explain this, the Lord added a final parable (Matt. 13:51–52) to remind them of their responsibilities.
HOLY PAUSE – LIVE TRUTH
As believers, we do not search after truth, because we have truth in God’s Son (John 14:6) and God’s Word (John 17:17). We are taught by the Spirit of Truth (John 16:13) who is truth (1 John 5:6). We search into truth that we might discover more truth. We are scribes—students—who sit at the feet of Jesus and listen to His words. One joy of the Christian life is the privilege of learning God’s truth from God’s Word. But we must not stop there.
We must be disciples who LIVE Truth. “Therefore every teacher who becomes a disciple of the kingdom of heaven” is a more accurate translation of Matthew 13:52. The teacher emphasizes learning, but the disciple emphasizes living. Disciples are doers of the Word (James 1:22.), and we learn by doing.
It is difficult to keep our lives balanced. We often emphasize learning at the expense of living. Or, we may get so busy serving God that we do not take time to listen to His Word. Every teacher must be a disciple, and every disciple must be a teacher. (See also 2 Timothy 2:2)
Are hearers AND doers of God’s Word?
Dear Heavenly Father,
You sought us out as valuable, the pearl of great price, to Your Kingdom. Thank you. Help me to not only be but to do your will on earth as it is in heaven. May Your Kingdom come and live in me and through me.
In Jesus Name, Amen