What does it mean to have faith like a mustard seed? Is Kingdom of God like a mustard seed? What does Scripture say to us about this? “Again he said, “What shall we say the kingdom of God is like, or what parable shall we use to describe it? It is like a mustard seed, which is the smallest of all seeds on earth. Yet when planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds can perch in its shade.” (Mark 4: 30-32). “Once, on being asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, “The coming of the kingdom of God is not something that can be observed, 21 nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is in your midst.“(Luke 17: 20-21).
In Scripture, we find many images of the Kingdom of God like a mustard seed. In this parable, the Savior takes a mustard seed for comparison. At first glance, it may seem that there are more solid examples. However, Jesus is not mistaken and accurately formulates every parable.
1. Mustard seed – a small beginning
The first thing you involuntarily pay attention to is the grain size. In fact, it is not, strictly speaking, the smallest, since the grain of the cypress tree is even smaller. Just in Israel, there was a saying: “Small, like a mustard seed.” We also have similar folk sayings: “Seven times measure – cut once.” But we understand that it is not necessary to measure the same size seven times.
However, it is noteworthy that the Lord Jesus compares and speaks about the majestic and mighty Kingdom of God like a mustard seed. This means nothing more than the fact that any small undertaking in the face of our God is not considered to be so. After all, even a mustard seed grows into a large tree, what then to speak of us, the carriers of God’s Kingdom! Luke directly says that Christ answered those who asked him: “because the kingdom of God is in your midst” (Luke 17:21). Therefore, when good things happen in our life, but it seems to us that this is too small and insignificant – let us recall the words of Jesus about the mustard seed. Kingdom of God like a mustard seed, it grows in you.
Do you sing in the choir and do not know how important this is for God? Be sure, if you grow a seed – it will still reach its goal. There are many cases where ordinary singing changed the hearts of people. And if each of the singers did not sow their little and insignificant mustard seed, it is not known whether the song would reach the heart of the listener.
Wilhelm Bush, a German preacher, talks about an industrialist who once attended the wedding. In the meeting, there were few people, and the huge room seemed not demanded and half empty. In itself, this man was a good little fellow, and he never stinted on helping the poor. However, as soon as he spoke about God, he said: “No, no, do not convince me, I have my worldview.” During the celebration, the poor man did not know how to behave: is it on his knees with everyone, or is it just necessary to cross himself? When to wear a hat and when to take it off?.
The bride, who was counted, always helped in the children’s ministry, and during the wedding, about thirty young girls sang Christian hymns. Suddenly, the pastor noticed something that struck him. The rich industrialist, whom he had known for a long time, covered his face with his hands and shrugged his shoulders convulsively. No, he did not feel bad, and it was not about well-being: the tender and sincere voices of the children affected the soul so much that she could not resist crying. And unrestrained! Indeed, a person has nothing left to do without God, as soon as crying.
But we brought this story as an example of a small grain of singing children, who made a change in the life of an important gentleman.
In history, there is a biography of a man named Telemachus. Once he was in Rome when there were bloody games called “Gladiator fights.” These spectacles corrupted the people and made the inhabitants of the empire cruel and bloodthirsty. Seeing the madness that is happening in front of tens of thousands of people, Telemachus went down to the fighting gladiators, trying to stop them. But the heated people began to throw stones at the saint, wishing that he would leave and not interfere with their fun.
The prolonged pause allowed a striking blow to hit the peacekeeper. Having fallen dead in the midst of a mad crowd, an innocent victim made everyone suddenly shudder. It is believed that it was after this tragedy that Emperor Honorius abolished gladiatorial fights that never occurred in the Roman Empire. One small desire, like a mustard seed, led to a halt of years of bloodshed.
Beloved ones! Let’s not assume that there is something that can be insignificant to God. Any view, any word, and even thought can become the seed of the future of a huge tree. It is written: “The kingdom of God does not come in a significant way.” Kingdom of God like a mustard seed. Therefore, everything that seems to you a trifle and an insignificant thing – use wisely, like sowing mustard seed.
2. Kingdom of God like a mustard seed should be sown
Often, it seems that these or those things happen on their own. In fact, everything has a cause. Even accidentally discarded seeds can grow, but the reason will be precisely what we threw out this seed. If you look at the parable of the mustard seed from this side, then we come to the unequivocal conclusion: the seed of the Kingdom of God must be sown. Dear soul! If we apply so much care about conventional crops when it comes to caring for the garden, then why do not we care about the great seed of the Kingdom that was equated to the mustard seed? Indeed, often it is so small that it can not be seen. However, the wise master will undoubtedly prepare the soil and will take care of the sown plant.
It happens that the farmer long waits for the rain early and late, does not sleep at night, watering what is hidden in the ground. Long waiting, when there will be a sprout from the dry earth, he receives a hundred times for his long-suffering. Let us look into our lives and answer the question: Are we wise sowers? Perhaps we are leaving this or that endeavor for God halfway, having decided that this will not bring sufficient benefit to his Kingdom? Imagine a man who poured for two days seed is sown in the ground, and then, after seeing that it does not appear, he decided to abandon it. Will such a plant be successful? It hardly ever breaks out, without the particular care of the farmer.
Others say: “I do, I do, but there is no result. Only I decide to correct my character – as soon as there is a mass of tempters, and I can not reach the good shots in life. I’m trying, but they always get in the way! ” Such a person is like a stupid sower who has dug a hole and put a good grain in it, every evening comes and digs it to check whether it began to grow. Under these conditions, there will never be a result! A small good deed, like a mustard seed, must be sown in our lives with absolute certainty about future fruits.
Besides, we are well aware that if the seed does not die, it can not bear fruit. Therefore, after sowing a little, let’s forget about it, and we will never remember or dig it out, but we will look after it. And make us first hard, and it seems that it will never grow – remember, Christ said that the Kingdom of God like a mustard seed that is being sown, which is. If you plant the Kingdom of God like a mustard seed in your life, believe it, it will TURN UP, for Jesus said so! Grow Kingdom of God like a mustard seed in your heart.
3. Visibility of growth
The last thing that is important to pay attention to is the result of the growth of mustard grain. The teacher says: “…when planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds can perch in its shade.” (Mark 4:32). Looking at our life, we can determine whether the seed of the Kingdom of God grows in us as the evangelist wrote about it. The mustard seed in the New Testament is mentioned twice. The first time is the place that we are dismantling, and the second – when it was a question of small faith.
It is often possible to hear that they speak of faith with an emphasis on one of its properties-an insignificant size. However, if you look at the other side, you can see in the word of Christ an indication of something else. Perhaps the Savior, referring to faith with mustard seed, did not mean that this faith is enough for significant achievements, but that this small grain is MUST be grown into a huge tree, “which is bigger than all the grains” ?!
Indeed, what does our relationship with Christ Jesus deserve, if, throughout our Christian life, our faith remains small, like a mustard seed? Paul, who said that he “knows who believed in whom,” hardly possessed a faith the size of a mustard seed! The holy man of God looked after the mustard seed in his life, and it finally grew into a long-awaited, great tree! Beloved, let us remember that from each of us a fruit is expected. “I chose you to go and bear fruit,” Jesus says. Therefore, God expects that we will show wisdom and learn a lesson from this beautiful parable.
Having sown a small, insignificant seed that does not seem promising, we will take care of it in the most careful way, patiently waiting for it to grow according to the word of the Lord, and will become the largest of all cereals. May God help us in this, and may the holy hope for a good fruit be born in the hearts of each one of us. Amen.
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