Teachings of Jesus 7: Why Doesn't God Wipe Out Evil Now? (With the Parable of the Wheat and Tares)

Why Doesn't God Wipe Out Evil Now? (With the Parable of the Wheat and Tares)

For a list of all free video teachings and transcripts in this series, go HERE.

Get the book or e-book to go along with the study. We will be covering 18 teachings this summer by video.  The book, however, has nearly all Jesus's teachings in Mark and into Matthew.  Get the book or e-book at Amazon by clicking HERE.

HERE is the full video for Teaching 7 titled Why Doesn't God Wipe Out Evil Now? (With the Parable of the Wheat and Tares) .  A written transcript is right below the video, if you prefer reading through it.  Enjoy...and I would love to hear any feedback/discussion you have by commenting here, on facebook, or by sending me a message on facebook.

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Today is the Parable of the Wheat and the Tares.

I love this parable because it addresses the number one complaint, I guess you could say, that skeptics and non-believers have about Christianity and about the Christian God. One of their strongest arguments is that they say, “Well, if God is good and he created the world and eveything in it; then how come there is evil in the world? How come there is evil? There is evil, so therefore God cannot exist. That is their argument.

And you know what I love? I love that – 2000 years ago – before this question was even asked by us, Jesus gave us the answer for it in a a parable. And not just one parable, he gave us at least two parables about this.

This is a longer passage today. Not only did Jesus tell the parable, he also specifically explained what each part of it meant. He didn't do this for all his parables. There are only a few, where, he told the parable, and when he saw the disciples didn't quite get it, he then went back and explained what everything was in the metaphor. Doesn't this demonstrate the foreknowledge of God? This question that many of us struggle with the most – he answered it over 2000 years ago.

Here is the passage:

“Jesus presented another parable to them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field. But while his men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went away. But when the wheat sprouted and bore grain, then the tares became evident also. The slaves of the landowner came and said to him, 'Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then does it have tares?'

And he said to them, 'An enemy has done this!' The slaves said to him, 'Do you want us, then, to go and gather them up?' But he said, 'No; for while you are gathering up the tares, you may uproot the wheat with them. Allow both to grow together until the harvest; and in the harvest, I will say to the reapers, 'First gather up the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them up; but gather the wheat into my barn.'”

Alright, I'm going to put up a picture. Look at this picture. This is wheat and a tare, side by side, before they are ripe. It is very, very difficulty to tell them apart. One of the main things is that the wheat is a little 'puffier;' the fruit of the wheat is larger than the tare. But as they are growing it is very, very hard to tell which is which. Now, once the wheat is ripe, you can tell which one is a tare. You can tell much better because the wheat limps over when it is ripe, but the tare it sticks straight up.

Still, what does this mean? So we are going to go on to Matthew 13:36, and here Jesus actually explains.

“Then he left the crowd and went into the house. And his disciples came to him and said, 'Explain to us the parable of the wheat and the tares of the field.' And he said to them, “The one who sows good seed is the Son of Man, and the field is the world; and as for the good seed, these are the sons of the kingdom, and the tares are the sons of the evil one; and the enemy who sowed them is the devil, and the harvest is the end of the age; and the reapers are angels. So just as the tares are gathered up and burned with fire, so it will be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send forth his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all stumbling blocks, and those who commit lawlessness, and will throw them into the furnace of fire; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'

Then the Righteous will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their father. He who has ears, let him hear. “ - Matthew 13:36-43

Why is there evil in the world? Why do terrible things happen? This parable tells us clearly that the evil does not come from God; it comes from the other side. And Jesus clearly explained that the tares were planted by the enemy. But this question is also, “Why doesn't God just wipe out all evil right now?” Although I don't have a nice, simple answer for that, we do know – from reading the whole context of the Bible – that there is a spiritual battle being waged in the unseen world. And we, for whatever reason, we are fallen. We are fallen by our nature away from God; and we are here for the purpose of finding our way back to God. And the Bible tells us that shouldn't be too difficult of a task! Because God has designed our lives – He has designed our lives to give us every opportunity to find Him.

Acts 17 tells us that God has designed our lives in such a way that we will desire to seek Him and find Him. God did this so they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. - Acts 17:27

And he also promises us that if we do seek Him, with our whole heart, that we will find Him. You will seed me and find me when you seek me with your whole heart. - Jeremiah 29:13

God is also extremely, extremely patient. The Bible tells us that to God, a thousand years is like a day, and a day is like a thousand years.

The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish. - 2 Peter 3:9

But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord, a day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. - 2 Peter 3:8

And how can this be? I'm going to go off the path right here and then come back, because that was always something that was hard for me to really grasp. But now that I am a bit older, I understand how the older you get, time seems to pass more rapidly. For example, I am in my forties now, and to me, a year seems to pass in about three months time. Of course when we were much younger, when we were children, a year – waiting a whole year – it felt like a decade! As you get older, time seems to move faster. So can you imagine how God, who is outside of time and who has existed all of this time? Yes – a thousand years is like a day to Him. But he is patient and he has set things up in order to give you every opportunity to find Him.

A couple of months ago, I was having a conversation. This was not a face to face conversation. For some reason I had engaged someone, I think, on a news message board somewhere. And he was using this argument. “Well why does God allow evil in the world. He can't exist because he is good, so he should just snap his fingers and make everything ok.” And my response to him was, “Well, that is interesting because that is what God is doing. We are fallen, and He is working out His plan to separate the evil from the good, so that we will be with him forever in goodness and righteousness.” And I don't know that he had ever heard it said that way before. And this gentleman, he kept saying similar things, and and I kept saying, “Well that is God's plan. That is what He is doing. That is what God is working out.” Then I finally said to him, “Don't you find it interesting that what you think God should do – is exactly what He is doing? And the only reason you reject Him is because He is not doing it on your timeframe?” And he really stopped the conversation after that. So hopefully, that is maybe something to keep him awake at night. Maybe not.

But God's timeframe is not the same as ours. And this parable explains why. Because He is giving everyone as much time as possible to find Him. And he does not want to start the separating process too early. We don't know who is going to be counted as righteous at the time. Because we know God accepts true death bed conversions, whether we think that is fair or not. He does. He is patient because He wants as many to find Him, to come and join Him.

A second purpose for my writings is to help strengthen your faith, especially when it comes under attack. So the next time you hear this argument...and if you are engaging in the culture in any way whatsoever, then you are hearing this argument. You will know that Jesus answered that some 2000 years ago. He let us know! So the next time someone comes to you with that argument, or that argument is presented in the media in some way, you will have a response. And the response won't be some "Oh, this or this, or this....or philosophically that." The response is directly from Jesus, what Jesus said.

And the other thing – just be thankful. If you have anyone you know – friends – who haven't found God yet, just be thankful that He is patient. When you pray, thank God for being patient. Thank God for setting out paths so that as many as possible will be able to find Him. And pray that those that you care about, that they do find that path. The path is already there, they just have to find it. Pray that God will inch them closer to that path.

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Get the book or e-book to go along with the study. We will be covering 18 teachings this summer by video. The book, however, has nearly all Jesus's teachings in Mark and into Matthew. Get the book or e-book at Amazon by clicking HERE.

For a list of all free video teachings and transcripts in this series, go HERE.