[From Taos, New Mexico]
Matthew 13 contains seven parables called “mysteries of the kingdom of heaven” by Jesus our Lord. These mysteries refer to Christendom,
“Taken together, [the mysteries], describe the result of the presence of the Gospel in the world during the present age, that it, the time of seed-sowing which began with our Lord’s personal ministry, and ends with the “harvest” (vs. 40-43). Briefly, that result is the mingled tares and wheat, good fish and bad, in the sphere of Christian profession. It is Christendom.”1
Kingdom mysteries are new truths concerning the kingdom that were not disclosed in the Old Testament. Look for these themes throughout the eight parables.
- The Gospel will be preached with varying responses based on heart preparation.
- It will be difficult to distinguish between saved and unsaved.
- A great expansion of Christendom from a small beginning, but final form will represent an apostate form of truth.
- Professing Christendom will experience increasing moral and doctrinal corruption as the age progresses.
- Israel will remain in unbelief throughout the mystery age and will not be converted until the age’s conclusion (Matthew 13:44).
- Christ’s death redeems members of the church throughout this age allowing the Lord to gain a treasure from among the Gentiles.
- There will be coexistence of the righteous and the wicked throughout the age only to be separated by Christ at the age’s conclusion.
- Kingdom myteries must be considered alongside Old Testament kingdom truth if one is to understand the totality of God’s kingdom agenda.
In sum, when these eight parables are taken together, the Lord reveals the spiritual condition that will prevail in the world during an interim period when the kingdom is not present 2 (i.e. our day).