THE PARABLE OF THE DARNEL

FOOD FOR THE SOUL
Typography

SIXTEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
(Green) Cycle A/ Year II (July 20, 2014)
Wis 12:13, 16-19/ Rom 8:26-27/
Mt 13: 24-43 

 

The parable of the darnel tells us about the seeds of wheat that were sown by the owner of the field. When the farmer was away, the enemy sowed on the same field the seeds of darnels or weeds.

As they grew up, they looked similar that when the servants told their master that they would uproot the darnel, the master prohibited them from doing so for fear that they might also uproot the wheat. The master rather told them to wait for the harvest time when they could already separate the darnel from the wheat.

This parable, according to famous biblical scholar in the name of William Barclay, teaches us some lessons. First, it teaches us that there is always a hostile power in the world. The enemy refers to Satan who constantly harasses us to make us fall into temptations and do evil things.

As Christians, we must always be aware of the presence of evil and we must always cling to God, asking His grace to defend us from the evil ones and to help us do His Will. Second, it teaches us how hard it is to distinguish between those who are in the Kingdom and those who are not. It was difficult to distinguish between the wheat and the darnel especially in the early period of their growth.

In the same way, it is difficult to distinguish who is the good person and who is the bad person as people can appear to be go but are actually evil persons and people can appear to be evil persons but are actually good. We are so quick in labeling persons without knowing the facts. As Christians, we should rather not label any person because we do not know the reality, personality and the history of such person.

Third, it teaches us not to be so quick with our judgments. If the servants uprooted the weeds, they could have uprooted the wheat as well since wheat and weeds appear the same in the early stage of their growth. As Christians, we should not judge any person at any given time because the life of a person is not yet finished.

Who knows if the evil person would repent and then become a saint like St. Paul and St. Augustine? And who knows if the good person would change and become an evil one like King Charles VIII of England. One can never tell. Therefore, we should never judge anyone for we do not even have the right to judge. Fourth, it teaches us that judgment does come in the end.

If we complain for the lack of justice here on earth, we must understand that we can have real and perfect justice can only in the second life right during the judgment day. During the judgment day, the evil persons will be separated from the good ones and will suffer everlasting fire while the good ones will be rewarded with eternal life just like the weeds that will be separated from the wheat and will be burn while the wheat will be gathered into the barn of the master.

Fifth, it teaches us that the only person with the right to judge is God. He is the only one who knows the whole truth about every person. He is the only one who has the capacity to discern the good and the bad. He is therefore the only one who has the right to judge.

The parable of the darnel warns us about the active presence of the evil in our midst, reminding us that we must be always in constant communion with God. It warns us that life here on earth is passing and that there will be another kind of life after judgment day. It also warns us that we must never judge any person because on God is the true judge.

Therefore, as Christians, our relationship with one another must not be defined by judging but by loving one another and by constantly submitting our lives and future to God, our Master.