The weeds among the wheat (Mt 13:25-13:26)

“But while everyone was asleep,

An enemy came.

He sowed weeds

Among the wheat.

Then he went away.

Thus,

When the plants came up,

They bore grain.

Then the weeds appeared as well.”

 

ἐν δὲ τῷ καθεύδειν τοὺς ἀνθρώπους ἦλθεν αὐτοῦ ὁ ἐχθρὸς καὶ ἐπέσπειρεν ζιζάνια ἀνὰ μέσον τοῦ σίτου καὶ ἀπῆλθεν.

ὅτε δὲ ἐβλάστησεν ὁ χόρτος καὶ καρπὸν ἐποίησεν, τότε ἐφάνη καὶ τὰ ζιζάνια.

 

There is no equivalent to this parable in the other synoptic gospels.   Only Matthew has this parable about the good seed and the weeds.  As with all good stories, a protagonist unnamed enemy appeared, who might have been the evil one or the devil but is only called an enemy here.  While everyone was asleep (ἐν δὲ τῷ καθεύδειν τοὺς ἀνθρώπους), their unnamed enemy came and went away (ἦλθεν αὐτοῦ ὁ ἐχθρὸς… καὶ ἀπῆλθεν).  However, this enemy “ἐχθρὸς” sowed weeds among and in the middle of the good wheat seeds (καὶ ἐπέσπειρεν ζιζάνια ἀνὰ μέσον τοῦ σίτου).  When the wheat plants sprouted (ὅτε δὲ ἐβλάστησεν ὁ χόρτος) and produced grain (καὶ καρπὸν ἐποίησεν), the weeds appeared as well (τότε ἐφάνη καὶ τὰ ζιζάνια).  Thus, the wheat and the weeds grew together.

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Learn from the world around you (Job 12:7-12:10)

“Ask the animals?

They will teach you.

Ask the birds of the air?

They will tell you.

Ask the plants of the earth?

They will teach you.

The fish of the sea will declare to you.

Who among all these does not know

That the hand of Yahweh has done this?

In his hand is the life of every living thing.

In his hand is the breath of all mankind.”

Job wanted his friends to ask the animals, the birds, the plants, and the fish, so that they can learn something. All these non-humans know about the hand of Yahweh and what he has done to every living thing. There is an ecological approach as the animals, birds, plants, and fish are given cognition. They, almost better than humans, know the power of God. The hand of life is in every living thing. God’s hand is the breath of all mankind and every living thing. This reminds me of the old song, “He’s got the whole world in his hands.” This is the only mention of Yahweh in this book except for the wisdom poem in chapter 28.