People tend to think they know about the parable of the wheat and tares.


God sows wheat.  The adversary sows tares (darnel weed, a species of bearded rye-grass that is a pretty effective emetic that causes violent vomiting if eaten).

The wheat and the tares get separated and the tares are burned.

At greater length a reprise:

The Parable of the Wheat and the Tares

When Jesus first gave the parable of the wheat and the tares (see Matthew 13:24–30, 36–43), He interpreted most the details in the parable.

1. The man sowing seed is the Son of Man (Jesus).
2. The field is the world.
3. The good seed are the children of the kingdom (followers of Jesus).
4. The tares are children of the wicked one (those who follow the enticements of Satan).
5. The enemy is the devil.
6. The harvest is the end of the world.
7. The reapers are the angels sent to reap the field.
8. The tares bound and burned are the evil ones separated out and cast into fire (punishment) at the Judgment.
9. The wheat gathered into the barn represents the righteous who are separated out and made to “shine forth” in the kingdom of the Father.
The Lord did not interpret the following details in Matthew 13:

1. The wheat springing forth and starting to bear fruit.
2. The men sleeping.
3. The wheat and tares being allowed to grow together until the harvest.
4. The wheat being uprooted in an attempt to weed out the tares.


People talk a lot about how the Wheat and the Tares need to be shifted and how we need to get rid of the Tares.  They are in good company, angels apparently do the same thing.

5 Behold, verily I say unto you, the angels are crying unto the Lord day and night, who are ready and waiting to be sent forth to reap down the fields;

6 But the Lord saith unto them, pluck not up the tares while the blade is yet tender (for verily your faith is weak), lest you destroy the wheat also.

7 Therefore, let the wheat and the tares grow together until the harvest is fully ripe; then ye shall first gather out the wheat from among the tares, and after the gathering of the wheat, behold and lo, the tares are bound in bundles, and the field remaineth to be burned.

Notice that Christ doesn’t agree with the angels.  He says no, even though they cry day and night to be allowed to pluck up the tares.  In fact, they are never allowed to pluck up the tares.

The shifting or the sorting is to occur after the wheat is gathered in and at the end, when the world is burned and made new.  Not before that, because attempts to remove the tares will invariably hurt the wheat.

I think that is good to remember, whenever we think we need to sort the Wheat from the Tares. Not to mention, are we really sure we can tell which is which?