New Testament Eucharistic Readings for Sunday of Proper 10: Year A
“As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.” (Matthew 13: 23)
So, we are to be the “Treated” good soil. Let me explain. First, it took me a while just to understand that we are to be good soil (dirt). You and I are not a part of the hundred, sixty or thirty yield of produce. No, we are what brings forth the produce. Took me a while to realize that our Lord Jesus was talking about us being the catalyst of what is desired, the prizes of heaven.
Now, let’s get to what I call the “treated” part. As one who occasionally gardens, I know that there are certain additives we can add to beginning plants once they have sprouted. Such pesticides or weed killers that specifically seek out the undesirable bugs and plantlife like weeds so that all the nutrient of the soil goes to the harvest we are looking for. In antiquity there was no such science available. However, in people terms today, we can call it “Baptism.”
Our fresh, rich, soul, soil that has been protected over the years by the careful replacement of rich soils, even from foreign lands, and ingested with carefully saved compost from ancient gardens and meals, gives forth new growth. But these new sprouts need rain. And they need the sprinkling of special weeding agents that will protect them. Baptism then takes what has come into the world and strengthens it for the work of producing a hundred, or sixty or thirty yields. This does not mean however, that we won’t get caught up in the distractions of the world and lose sight of why we are here. We must continue to germinate. We must continue to help others to take root.
Just as some plant eating bugs will find a way to maneuver around a pesticide, so too will evil try to steer some away from their baptismal covenant. Our Church community is the composter of maintaining rich soil. Church community is what is necessary to do the work of producing the harvest that God is looking for. Somebody say Amen.
Let us hear what the Spirit is saying to and through the saints of God and then ponder anew what the Almighty can do. John