instruere...inlustrare...delectare Disputations

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

An accommodating parable

Here's a thought: Jesus says that, in the parable of the sower, the seed is the word of God and the different soils are different types of people who hear the word. We could also think of each seed as an individual word (i.e., statement) of God, and the whole ground with all its different soils as a single human heart. Then we have a warning (not necessarily intended by Jesus, but I trust He won't mind this reuse of His broadcast sowing image) against accepting only some of what God says, while other commandments are not fruitfully received.

If we recognize that the word of God is in fact indivisible, that you can't say, "I'll love God, but not my neighbor" (or, perhaps more commonly, "I'll love this neighbor but not that one," or, "I'll love my neighbor this far but no farther"), then we'll see how foolish it is to count on the hundredfold return from our good soil while neglecting our weeds, our stones, and our hardened paths.