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The parable of the dragnet

Gospel reading: Mt 13:47-53
Jesus said to the disciples: “The Kingdom of heaven is like a net thrown into the sea, which collects fish of every kind. When it is full they haul it ashore and sit down to put what is good into buckets. What is bad they throw away.

Thus it will be at the end of the age. The angels will go out and separate the wicked from the righteous and throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.

“Do you understand all these things?” They answered, “Yes.” And he replied, “Then every scribe who has been instructed in the Kingdom of heaven is like the head of a household who brings from his storeroom both the new and the old.” When Jesus finished these parables, he went away from there.

REFLECTION
Do you understand all these things?

Jesus asks this when he has finished proclaiming the parables of the Kingdom. The disciples answer, “Yes.” It is as good sign.

Before concluding his teachings, Jesus likens the Kingdom of heaven to a net thrown into the sea. The sea refers to Lake Galilee, not the Mediterranean Sea. The Greek word for sea and lake is the same – thalassa.

The dragnet catches good and bad fish. The parable is similar to the earlier weeds among the wheat. In both stories, the good and the bad are allowed to grow together. Only at the end will they be separated and treated accordingly, as when the dragnet is hauled ashore and when harvest comes.

Jesus ends his teaching with another saying, “Every scribe who has been instructed in the Kingdom…” (v 52). It is believed that this scribe refers to the author of the gospel who is familiar with the old and the new teachings. It can also be applied to his disciples who, like the scribes, have been instructed in the Kingdom and must be skillful enough to make sense out of what they have been taught.

You understand your faith when you integrate it in your life.

Do you see the connections between your catechism and such new teachings as the care of creation and of the family?

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SOURCE: “366 Days with the Lord,” ST PAULS, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: publishing@stpauls.ph; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.

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