Who’s in and who’s out? That’s the stark contrast Jesus paints with many of his parables on the kingdom of heaven.
In his Parable of the Wheat and the Weeds, Jesus speaks of the Enemy sowing seeds of weeds among the wheat. After the servants ask their master if they should pull out the weeds, they are told, “No, because while you are pulling the weeds, you may root up the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.” Matthew 13:31-35
Jesus echoes this parable with another in Matthew 13 about a net that catches both good fish and bad.
It’s a sobering reminder that the church is filled with weeds, with people we might initially think are Christians, but in reality they’ve never placed their faith in Christ. The fruit of their life shows they’ve bought into a dead religion based on the trap of good works or rule-keeping.
What a terrifying thought to know that many who fill our churches will not enter the kingdom of heaven.
Who’s out and who’s in? Who are we to judge if someone else is out or in?
The fruit of grace is a transformed life. So if someone “looks like a weed” then I’m going to pray for them and speak to them as if they are, extending God’s grace every chance I get. That’s not judging. That’s loving!
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