Beware of Tares

Appears the same on the outside

Appears the same on the outside

Wherever and whenever the Lord’s work advances, His enemy will try to thwart it by:
• Opposing and persecuting His servants e.g. the early church;
• Seducing God’s people to lead them astray e.g. golden calf;
• Mixing counterfeits with the real thing to confuse people e.g. tares and wheat, or
• Any other means.

The method is only the means to an end – as long as the Kingdom is hurt, that’s all that matters to the evil one. In this case, it appears that he is sowing weeds:
Mt 13:25 But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away.
• Mt 13:38 The field is the world, and the good seed stands for the people of the kingdom. The weeds are the people of the evil one.

There is a family of four middle-aged brothers and sisters, whose dad was a policeman. But instead of having a respect for the law, they flaunted the law and consumed a lot of government resources. The elder brother is a diabetic and an amputee, looked after by the older sister. The younger brother seemed to be a drug pusher. Neither of them comes to church.

The older sister comes to church, but only to participate in the love feast after the service. While other families are grateful and content for the Grace Meal, they would ask for money instead, which our hosts declined. If the hosts are out-of-town and cannot pick up bread for distribution, this family would remind them that they have been away and there was no bread. In other words, they looked upon it not so much as a gift, but an obligation on the part of the missionaries.

The younger sister tried, unsuccessfully, to send her older sister to psychiatric hospital. She claimed that her older sister has mental problems, and attempted to collect government subsidy so that she can care for her. The government declined her application. She also tried to entrap a married man to sleep with her, then blackmail him for a sum of money by lying that she was pregnant. The man succumbed and gave her NT$500,000 (US$16,700), but this time she did get pregnant, and as a result she now has a 10-year-old daughter.

Although the young girl’s grades are poor due to lack of family support, she is normal and loves going to Sunday school. However, her mom claimed that she is mentally retarded and tried to collect public funding again. She also blamed the teachers for keeping the kids in class too long; as a result her daughter developed urinary tract infection!

How do you deal with families like this? Do you pull out the weeds and isolate them, prevent them from coming? But that might uproot some wheat in the process. Some who do not know the real situation might think the church is acting in an unchristian and unloving manner. They might stumble over a misunderstanding. How about the young girl, who is innocent of any wrong doing but caught in between? She would be hurt too. The only safe thing to do is to let both grow together until the harvest.

Beware of the Enemy. Watch and pray. We need to be dependent on the Lord all the time.

By their fruit you shall know them.

By their fruit you shall know them.

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