The parable of the mustard seed

Published July 29, 2018, 10:00 PM

by AJ Siytangco

MATTHEW 13:31-35reflectionstoday

Jesus proposed a parable to the crowds. “The Kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that a person took and sowed in a field. It is the smallest of all the seeds, yet when full-grown it is the largest of plants. It becomes a large bush, and the ‘birds of the sky come and dwell in its branches.’”

He spoke to them another parable. “The Kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed with three mea­sures of wheat flour until the whole batch was leavened.”

All these things Jesus spoke to the crowds in parables. He spoke to them only in parables, to fulfill what had been said through the prophet: I will open My mouth in parables, I will announce what has lain hidden from the foundation of the world.


THE SMALLEST… THE LARGEST. The two parables in the Gospel underline the amazing growth of the Kingdom even from very tiny beginnings. The mustard seed is among the smallest of seeds, but Jesus alerts His listeners as to how it can grow into a large plant that the birds of the air use as their home. In the same way, in baking, only a little leaven is used but, won­der of wonders, it can lift or make the whole dough rise so that loaves of bread can be produced from a small quantity of flour.

In like manner, the Kingdom of God starts from very small beginnings. Many existing great works of charity come from very insignificant and humble initiatives. Why? Because the seed and the dynamism of the Kingdom are in them. With human co­operation and solidarity, God blesses these works to become signs of the Kingdom’s presence on earth. Many believe that great things are achieved only with huge capital investments. Instead, greatness does not come right away: It takes time and patience, but it is on its way.

Do we believe in the power of God to transform small beginnings into Kingdom-like greatness? Are we willing to pay the price and wait?

SOURCE: “365 Days with the Lord 2018,” ST. PAULS Philippines, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: [email protected]; Website: