4. "The Dragnet and the Household Treasures"

Matthew 13:47–52

The dragnet catches the good and the badNew and old household treasures to be freely given

The Parable of the Dragnet, unique to the Gospel of Matthew, reveals that a day of judgment is coming when God will separate the good from the evil. The evil will be judged, found guilty and after separation from the good, thrown into the fiery furnace. Thus, when the judgment books are opened, only one factor will determine our eternal destiny: If one's name is recorded in the Lamb's Book of Life.
The Parable of the Household Treasures presupposes that we have become, through our study of the Word, scribes: conversant with Scripture, able to teach the law. We scribes, therefore, as our Lord's disciples, have a double treasure to draw upon; namely the old covenant prophesies and the firsthand accounting of learning how Jesus fulfilled them.




The Parable of the Dragnet

Matthew 13:47–50


Details: A "dragnet" was cast into the sea. What's a "dragnet"?
The Holman Bible Dictionary defines "dragnet" as a large fishing net equipped with a weighted bottom edge for touching ("dragging") the river or lake bottom and a top edge with wooden floats, allowing the net to be spread across the water. Such nets were normally let down from a boat and then drawn to shore by a crew positioned on the beach. In the case of a large catch the net was hauled to shore by a boat. Once the dragnet was drawn to shore, the fish were separated; those good for eating were saved in vessels, the inedible were discarded.

Meaning:
Jesus explains what this parable means (Matthew 13:49–50). [Click to open, then close, each link to Scripture.] This is how it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come and separate the wicked from the righteous 50and throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
• The kingdom of heaven, in its present state, will be a mixture of good and bad.
• But in the future there will be a separation that will occur "at the end of the age."
• The agents of this separation will be the "angels" (Matthew 13:41). The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil.
• The "wicked" will be separated from the "just" (i.e., the righteous).
• The punishment of the "wicked" is described: "cast...into the furnace of fire" and "There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth."

Emphasis:
(a) The "future" separation of those in the kingdom and (b) The punishment of the wicked.

Conclusion:
"The Parable of the Dragnet", then, reinforces the spiritual truths taught in "The Parable of the Weeds," especially those relating to the coming judgment and condemnation of the wicked. That Jesus would emphasize the judgment and condemnation of the wicked in this parable ought to impress upon us that the "good news" of the kingdom of heaven also contains "bad news" for those who reject it.

The Parable of the Household Treasures

Matthew 13:51–52


Following His explanation of "The Parable of the Dragnet" (Mt 13:47-50), [Click to open, then close, each link to Scripture.] "Once again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was let down into the lake and caught all kinds of fish. 48When it was full, the fishermen pulled it up on the shore. Then they sat down and collected the good fish in baskets, but threw the bad away. 49This is how it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come and separate the wicked from the righteous 50and throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. we find Jesus asking His disciples: "Have you understood all these things?" This question likely relates not just to the preceding parable, but to all of those recorded in this chapter: The Parables of the Seed and the Soil; of the Work of the Enemy; of the Weeds; of the Mustard Seed; of the Leaven; of the Hidden Treasure; of the Pearl; and of the Dragnet — all of which reveal truths related to "the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 13:11). He replied, “The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them.
When His disciples answer Jesus' "Have you understood all these things?" question in the affirmative, He tells yet another parable. Called "The Parable of the Household Treasures," this parable describes not so much the kingdom of heaven itself, but those (especially "scribes") who have been instructed concerning the kingdom.


Details:
Jesus is making a point about a "scribe." The "Holman Bible Dictionary" describes a scribe as "a person trained in writing skills and used to record events and decisions. They were more than simply copyists, but students and instructors as well. Jesus' point is not about a normal scribe, who would understand only the Law but a scribe who would be instructed about the kingdom of heaven (via the parables).
This parable's householder had "treasure," something of great value that was both "new" and "old." The "old" treasure would be his understanding of the Law. The "new" treasure would be his understanding of the kingdom of heaven.

Implications:
(1) Every disciple is like a scribe; (2) Every disciple is like a householder with treasure; (3) Every disciple has both old and new treasure.

Conclusion:
When we, as disciples of Christ, understand the parables and His other teachings concerning the kingdom of heaven, as well as the Old Testament, then we have treasure added upon treasure! But we must be like "the scribes of old" to enjoy these treasures.
Don't allow the distractions of this world to cause the "treasures" to slip through your fingers!


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