God’s Kingdom will have a Powerful Effect

Matthew 13:44-52

Jerry A Collins




²                 Is the kingdom of God an insignificant thing?

²                 Why should the kingdom of God be treasured?

²                 What kind of influence can we expect God’s kingdom to have?


It is legitimate for each of us to ask and answer this question honestly: What is the source of your significance, security, and authority in life? In his book the knowledge of the holy A.W. Tozer said something like this; what you think, when you think ‘God’ is the most important thing about you. Your concept of God and His kingdom will do more to shape your thoughts and actions than any other single concept in your life. It is no wonder God gave so much revelation in the Bible emphasizing His attributes. Citizens and subjects of God’s kingdom must derive all of their significance, security and authority only from this Kingdom. The Kingdom of God is a Biblical figure used to designate the true, eternal, heavenly and supernatural domain of God over all those who wish that dominion—those in heaven, angels, and believers today and future. So what is this kingdom like? How does the realm of God’s domain function and operate and develop? The parables of the Kingdom explain that to us. Jesus gives us six pictures—the kingdom of heaven is like—of the nature of this kingdom.

Observation: 13:31-32

Each of the parables begins with the same phrase highlighting the pictures illustrating the concepts.


Mustard Seed: We observe several things about this seed (1) It is very small—smaller than all seeds. (2) It is sown in the sower’s field—sown by Christ and His follower’s in the world. So it may not seem to amount to much especially with all of the other competing kingdoms—Pharisees, Sadducces, Scribes, Roman—vying to give you significance, security and authority. (3) However, in this environment the Kingdom of God manages to find a place as a full grown plant—larger than the garden plants. Every effort for the Kingdom of God appears small, frail and vulnerable at the beginning but then it somehow grows. (4) So large in fact that it becomes a tree—an illusion from Eze 17:23 in which birds of the air nesting in the branches represent Gentiles. So this Kingdom will begin local but become global. Even unbelievers will benefit from it’s protection, safety, refuge, socially and politically. This is a characteristic of this Kingdom. It is a kingdom that does not force itself on people but grows in cultivated people. Without any human effort it becomes powerful. But it is not made big as any objective or effort of anyone.

Application:  (1) We should not attempt to build God’s kingdom for Him—Jesus said He will do that. Just plant disciples—sow them in the world. (2) Expect God’s Kingdom to start small barely noticeable—Jesus and the disciples—but rapidly grow after that—Acts. (3) We should plant the truth of the Kingdom and watch it grow. We have no control over it.

Observation: 13:33

Interpretation: GOD’S KINGDOM IS IMPERCEPTIBLE BUT THEN SPREADS AND PENETRATES THE WORLD  Leaven: Like leaven hidden by a woman in the flour, so the kingdom sowed in the field is hidden to the world but grows by it’s own nature to penetrate that field—the world. Notice she hid it inconspicuously and may no attempt to spread it. It spread all by itself. The source of this growth would be secret—most likely the Holy Spirit at work in the hearts of men—and it’s impact and influence would spread all over the place. In fact, only 40 years after Christ spoke these words, the gospel had been taken to the end of the known world.

Application: (1) We have the privilege of participating in the expanding influence of this Kingdom and He invites us to do that in our world—not build our own or think He needs our help. This Kingdom has the ability to penetrate on it’s own. (2) Don’t think that you are indispensable to God’s program.

Observation: 13:44-46

These two parables explain the value attached to this kingdom—if it is understood, it will be seen as the greatest value of anything.


Hidden Treasure: Again we have the picture of a field and a type of sower as the previous parables. So God’s kingdom is similar to a man finding hidden treasure—something obviously valuable but unexpected—and then buries it—which is common to protect it from being plundered—sells all he has and buys the same field. A point made is the unexpected   discovery   of     God’s kingdom—almost by chance from his viewpoint. Realizing it’s value he hides it again. The idea is the value is so great he gives up everything he has to get it. It’s so valuable that he gives up everything necessary to have it.

Costly Pearl: The difference here is that this merchant is seeking pearls—priceless ones—that he can purchase and own. The hidden treasure was discovered by chance. The costly pearl is sought for. So some people come to the Kingdom of God, from their viewpoint, almost by chance. Others are actually seeking & looking for it.

Application: (1) God’s Kingdom may be found by seeking for it or like one coming on it by chance—in either case, if it’s understood, it will be seen as the greatest value ever. (2) Salvation is of crucial value because it is the only way to enter God’s Kingdom. But it is a means not an end—a start not a finish—a door not the house. The ultimate value is the Kingdom of God. (3) One can come into the Kingdom thru differing circumstances. You come from wherever you are—not looking for it or seeking after it. One unexpectedly finding it, the other hunting—perhaps trying one religion and philosophy then another—until it is found by him.

Observation: 13:47-51


The Dragnet: Like a large net requiring a team to operate encircling a large area to trap fish and then be pulled and hauled to shore—is the Kingdom of God. God has initiated the throwing of this net—His Kingdom amongst the false kingdoms of the world—until it is full and in the end he will separate believers from unbelievers—the true from the false. In the meantime we give the gospel and disciple without discrimination inviting all into the Kingdom and discipling those who come. Jesus affirms this separation will occur 49-50. The bad fish will be cast into the Lake of Fire—literal torment of varying degrees forever in the end. Jesus questioned the disciples comprehension of these parables 51 and they said ‘yes’. The Householder 52 are the disciples who are learning under Jesus instruction new things—that is additional revelation from God—as well as having received the old truths of God’s revelation already revealed in the OT. They would proclaim the significance of both. This is why we have over 320 quotes and allusions in their NT writings to us. They are scribes-learning, interpreting & teaching us.

Application: (1) The gospel is not simply an offer to heaven but warning about hell. As good news it has power to save men from bad eternal destiny. One does not have to choose hell to get there. Only refuse the claims of Christ—or do nothing at all. (2) We must not have any competing kingdom for our significance, security and authority. Our homes, churches, organizations, hobbies or careers may be used of God to advance His Kingdom—but never a place where my significance, security or authority are sought for nor found.