Matthew 13:36 MEANING

Matthew 13:36
(36) Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field.--The question was asked privately, probably in the house of Peter, to which our Lord had retired with the disciples after the listening crowd upon the beach had been dismissed. It implies that the disciples had thought over the parable, and had found it harder to understand than those of the Mustard-seed and the Leaven.

Verses 36-52. - Christ alone with his disciples. He explains to them at their request the parable of the tares (vers. 36-43), and adds three parables - the treasure, the pearl, the dragnet - the first two calculated to urge them to full renunciation of everything for Christ, the third to save them from presumption (vers. 44-50). Upon their acknowledging progress in spiritual understanding, he shows them further possibilities (vers. 51, 52). Verses 36-43. - The explanation of the parable of the tares of the field. Verse 36. - Then Jesus sent the multitude away; then he left the multitudes (Revised Version, ἀφείς); cf. Matthew 26:44. And went into the house (ver. 1, note): and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare; explain (Revised Version, διασάφησον); i.e. make it thoroughly clear. The verb is found elsewhere in the New Testament only in Matthew 18:31, where the thought is that the man's fellow servants brought his behaviour fully before their lord's knowledge (cf. also 2 Macc. 1:18). As compared with φράσον (Received Text, and Matthew 15:15), it leaves room for the disciples having already partially understood it. Unto us the parable of the tares of the field. The addition, "of the field," indicates the point of the parable, considered even as a mere story, that the tares grew in no chance place, but in a piece of cultivated ground already allotted to other produce.

13:31-35 The scope of the parable of the seed sown, is to show that the beginnings of the gospel would be small, but its latter end would greatly increase; in this way the work of grace in the heart, the kingdom of God within us, would be carried on. In the soul where grace truly is, it will grow really; though perhaps at first not to be discerned, it will at last come to great strength and usefulness. The preaching of the gospel works like leaven in the hearts of those who receive it. The leaven works certainly, so does the word, yet gradually. It works silently, and without being seen, Mr 4:26-29, yet strongly; without noise, for so is the way of the Spirit, but without fail. Thus it was in the world. The apostles, by preaching the gospel, hid a handful of leaven in the great mass of mankind. It was made powerful by the Spirit of the Lord of hosts, who works, and none can hinder. Thus it is in the heart. When the gospel comes into the soul, it works a thorough change; it spreads itself into all the powers and faculties of the soul, and alters the property even of the members of the body, Ro 6:13. From these parables we are taught to expect a gradual progress; therefore let us inquire, Are we growing in grace? and in holy principles and habits?Then Jesus sent the multitude away,.... That his disciples might have the opportunity of conversing with him alone, about the sense of the parables he had delivered; and that he might instruct them by some others hereafter mentioned,

And went into the house: left the ship in which he had been preaching to the multitude, came on shore, and returned to the house he came out of, Matthew 13:1.

and his disciples came to him; and being alone, make an humble request to him,

saying, declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field: by which they mean, not a rehearsal of it, but an explication of the sense and meaning of it: they ask nothing about the parables of the mustard seed and leaven, either because they better understood them; or because there were some things very remarkable and striking in this, which made them very desirous to be particularly informed of the several parts of it, and their meaning.

Courtesy of Open Bible