Thursday, June 10, 2021

Friday prior to Proper 6


Mark 4:26–34—These parables serve as both warning and encouragement to us. We have a role to play in the furtherance of God’s kingdom on earth by sharing the Good News of the Gospel with those around us, but we must never think that the growth of the Kingdom is due to our progression and effort, for it is the Lord and His Word alone which are effective. But neither should we despair if the growth of the Lord’s Kingdom seems somehow unspectacular in our eyes. He alone is the Lord of the harvest (Mark 9:38); thus, we never cease praying “Thy Kingdom come” with patience and confidence.

Only Mark records this parable. Whereas the parable of the sower stresses the importance of proper soil for the growth of seed and the success of the harvest, here the mysterious power of the seed itself is emphasized. The gospel message contains its own power.

Some see this parable chiefly as a parable of contrast. As seed time is followed in due time by harvest, so will the present hiddenness and ambiguousness of the kingdom of God be succeeded by its glorious manifestation. This parable conveys both a warning and a word of encouragement to Jesus’ disciples. However important their role may be (21–25), they are not to imagine that the Kingdom is their kingdom or its triumph their triumph; the Kingdom remains God’s mysteriously creative work. He is “Lord of the harvest” (Mark 9:38). This serves for encouragement also; however slow and unspectacular the “progress” of the Kingdom may be, the outcome is in the sure hands of the Creator. Men may pray, “Thy kingdom come,” with patience and confidence.

From the Catechism we have been taught; The kingdom of God certainly comes by itself without our prayer, but we pray in this petition that it may come to us also.

How does God’s kingdom come? God’s kingdom comes when our heavenly Father gives us His Holy Spirit, so that by His grace we believe His holy Word and lead godly lives here in time and there in eternity.

Prayer of the Day: God, you are the tree of life, offering shelter to all the world. Graft us into yourself and nurture our growth, that we may bear your truth and love to those in need, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.[2] 11 June 2021—

[1] A Sower went out to sow, copyright © Ed Riojas, Higher Things
[2] Collect for Proper 6, Lutheran Service Book © 2006 Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis

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