Pure Wheat

Seed grain inspectors on the Canadian prairies take great care to ensure the purity of wheat laid aside as seed for the ensuing year's crop. Before any seed grain is approved it is carefully tested for the presence of wild oats, thistles, and other impurities. Farmers, too, exercise every precaution to ensure a weed-free field before sowing, and just before the harvest many can be found in the fields scrutinizing their crops, oftentimes with binoculars, to detect the presence of any stray weed that would interrupt the uniform crown of ripening grain.

Although there may not have been seed inspectors in Jesus' time, Old World farmers of that period must certainly have been interested in a weed-free crop. Thus the image of the wheat and the tares was useful to Jesus in instructing the people. His parable concludes with the injunction by the owner of the field to his servants, "Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn." Matt. 13:30; The owner knew that his wheat crop was a good one. He had planted good seed; an enemy's work could not spoil it. And this understanding enabled him to give his reapers proper instructions for harvesting pure wheat.

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THE WAY TO EMMAUS
April 9, 1977
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