“Therefore every teacher of the law who has been instructed about the kingdom of heaven is like the owner of a house who brings out of his storeroom new treasures as well as old.” Matthew 13:52
This brief parable begins with a question Jesus asks His disciples. “Have you understood all these things?” “Yes,” they replied (Matthew 13:51). They heard these parables and could possibly recount each one of them, but did they understand them?
Did they understand that some of the seed sown in the field will ultimately come to nothing? Did they understand that alongside the good seed, there will be weeds sown by an enemy which will threaten to choke the good? Did they understand that the mustard seed, though small in its beginnings, will grow into a tree which may appear impressive, but is a distortion harbouring evil? And just as yeast permeates a loaf, did they understand the kingdom of heaven on earth will be contaminated on every level by sin?
The first four parables teach the reality of human failure within the kingdom, and the disciples needed to understand that this is what will be true. Despite the discouraging images as the world will see the kingdom of God, there is an understanding from God’s perspective that is very different. Do the disciples realize that regardless of set-backs, hardships and difficulties, the treasure is going to be obtained, and that the pearl is purchased by Christ? Did they know that the wheat and the weeds, the good and the bad fish will be separated at the end of the age?
Their reply was, “Yes.” If they have fully understood these things, Jesus said they will be like the owner of a house who brings out of his storeroom new treasures as well as old. They will never give up, for despite the difficulties and opposition, they know there are always new and old treasures to bring out. If treasure here is equal to the treasure of the fifth parable in the hidden treasure, then there will always be new and old treasures coming forth; new people for whom Christ died to be brought to Him as Saviour and also established believers to be nurtured and brought to maturity in their walk with Christ.
There are no grounds for disillusionment or disappointment if we see things from the perspective of the Lord Jesus Christ. There is always confidence, always hope, always new treasures and always something to do. If we see the kingdom of heaven, not through the eyes of the world, but through the eyes of God, and submit to the Lordship of Christ, we are going to shine like the sun in our Father’s kingdom.