The Biggest Miracle?
Let us get this picture clear in our minds. Imagine being a farmer. Not just this, but envision the whole Earth as a field. Still further, visualize that you can see the entire Earth at once. As you scan its vastness, you realize all you can see, is an unending sea of weeds. Weeds!? Now, this is not what any farmer wants to see! Do you not think that any and every farmer would put a match to the whole lot and let it all burn in a massive inferno? Surely! Yet, we will witness someone who has a very different approach. Of course, I’m talking about humanity here…
Indeed, in Matthew 13:24-30, Jesus uses a parable to demonstrate that the unsaved are seen as weeds, and the saved as wheat. So, yes, it is true that there is a mix of the two upon the Earth. Yet, amazingly, at one time, every single person was, well, a weed! For God says, “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” and “The entire world is guilty before God.” (Romans 3:23) (~Romans 3:19)
Do we not see, that all alike, deserved to be gathered and burned? As it is written in verse thirty, “Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned.” For, think of it, can a weed produce wheat kernels? No, it cannot! Alas, as is written, “Together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.” (Romans 3:12)
Maybe reformation is needed. If one would but obey God and keep His commandments? For popular is the teaching that we need to repent. By that they mean that we must turn from all sin and amend our ways, and then God would be pleased to save us. Yet, this is not what God teaches us! Biblically, repent means, “to have a change of mind.” One is to come to see that religion cannot save. That one cannot amend one’s ways. That we cannot approach God on our terms. Rather, we must come in God’s appointed way. We will get to that yet. Then again, maybe we ought to confess all our sins to God, maybe then, God would be pleased and accept us. No, none of these approaches will turn a weed into a stalk of wheat! Never, no never, can a weed be found bearing the good fruit of wheat kernels! So it is, the Word of God refers to the fruit of weeds as, “dead works.” (Hebrews 9:14) Indeed, the hope for humanity seems utterly bleak! Yet…
A Shocking Remedy!
The truth is, that God saves the ungodly! “For while we were still weak, at the right time. Christ died for the ungodly.” (Romans 5:6) Yes, we come to God as a filthy “weed”! We have nothing good to show for! We come in all our ugliness! In our “worthless” condition! (See Romans 3:12) We come as “fuel for the fire”! In the biblical time of kings, people who were not authorized to approach the king, if they did so, would be at the peril of death! Only if the king would hold out his golden scepter, would the one approaching be welcomed. Yet, we are all welcome to come to the throne of grace, to be pardoned and made the children of God! Yet, how can this be?!
The almost unthinkable reality, the miracle of miracles, I believe, is that one is made a brand new creation in Christ, simply by God’s mercy! Changed from a weed, who deserves to be burned, to a stalk of wheat that bears good fruit! Incredible! Ponder this, “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me.” (Galatians 2:20) Oh, by the mercy of God, the weed is eradicated and Christ comes to dwell in the one made into a stalk of wheat! Oh, what can that stalk of wheat do, but bow its fruitful head in adoration of the Miracle Worker! It came to the throne of grace as a weed, and walked out as a stalk of wheat! It walked in, capable only of producing “dead works,” but walked out bearing “good fruit”! Yes, we came to the Merciful One, as an awful sinner, and walked out a saint! Oh, hallelujah! “He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” (Titus 3:5-7) We see then, that not reformation, but eradication, is the answer for the sinner! The sinner must die! We needed to be born again, made a brand new creation in Christ!
How Could God Still be Just?
One must still remember, that God is holy and just. We know that, “The wages of sin is death.” (Romans 6:23) And we know that, “Without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.” (Hebrews 9:22) So how could God possibly pardon the sinner? The astonishing truth is this, God the Father sent His only begotten Son, to die the death the sinner should have. Jesus, literally, was punished by death for your sin. This that you could be pardoned, made a child of God, and made a saint! This was only made possible by the death of Jesus Christ in your place. It was wholly God’s doing by grace! It was an outright miracle! How can one but respond by bowing one’s head in humble adoration of our holy God? As weeds we deserved to be burned, but God spared not His only begotten Son, but gave Him up, instead of us, to the altar of cross! Jesus was treated as a worthless weed, and endured the wrath of God for all our wicked fruits! No wonder, the Word of God says that a person is saved by grace and not by any kind of works! Nothing we could possibly do, could transform us from weeds to wheat! Neither is there any miraculous ability in us to change us from the wheat we’ve become, back into weeds fit for the burning! For even so says the Word of God, “Truly, truly, I say to you whoever hears my word and believes in him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.” (John 5:24)
Wonder of wonders! Yes, all your and my sins were heaped upon Christ on the altar of the cross, and there the wrath of God was exhausted upon the sinless Lamb of God! Do you believe this was done for you? If so, your sin-debt is wholly forgiven, and you are given as a gift from God, the very righteousness of Christ Himself! As is written, “The LORD laid on him the iniquity of us all,” and also, “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” (Isaiah 53:6, 2 Corinthians 5:21) On account of this, God has promised, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Romans 10:13) Or, as said in another Scripture, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)
I ask, are you a “weed” or “a stalk of wheat”? As is written, “Let both grow together until the harvest, and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.” (Matthew 13:30) But remember, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Romans 10:13) Yes, if you are a “weed,” God sent Jesus to be your Saviour, that you might not receive what you deserve. For, God takes “No pleasure in the death of the wicked,” but rather, is “Not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” – today! (^2 Peter 3:9)
Will you be God’s next miracle?
Victor J. Reimer
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Photo credit: “Viatnamese’s Smile” by Ciao Ho
*Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version (ESV), copyrighted © 2001 by Crossway. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
~Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007
Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188.
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