For his parting sermon to the congregation at St Anne’s, Dunbar on 23 July 2023, Rev Eddie Sykes continued the refreshingly different interpretation of the Parable of the Sower in Matthew 13 that he had started at Rosyth the previous week, which is why this second sermon has been posted on the Rosyth website. You might want to read his earlier thoughts at this link before reading the fragments of the second sermon that we’ve printed below:
… A question that arises for the disciples is: If good seed has been planted on the earth by God, where did the weeds come from? And they themselves are saying: “If we are doing what you tell us, planting seeds of God’s goodness, how come bad stuff is all around us? And now that there are weeds among the good wheat, what do we do? Try and uproot the weeds?” The answer given by Jesus is: Let the wheat and the weeds grow together, side by side.
In essence, this is life – where good and evil exist side by side. There are people in every neighbourhood, every school, every business, dare I say, every church, who are at times incredibly fruitful, and, at other times, seem to be incredibly destructive. Just because one goes to church doesn’t guarantee that they are wheat. Weeds infiltrate the body of the church. … When we sow good seed in the world and expect a healthy crop of praiseworthy believers, what do we do about the weeds which appear in our midst? … The advice given here is to forget about trying to judge by your own standards and leave those things to God and the angel reapers – the ones qualified to do this work.
… Sometimes the church has those persons or types that it just wants to get rid of, because it wants to be a 100% all wheat church! But you look at yourself, and if you are honest, you will admit that you are a tangle of wheat and weeds, and so is everyone else.
… Notice too when Jesus says the action of sowing the weeds happens – that the weeds were sown by the enemy when everyone was asleep. That is when many of today’s problems happen – while we are sleeping – not physical sleep because we need that – but morally asleep. The way one gets rid of the weeds is to stay awake, and remember that the one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man – who seeks to be passionately involved in all our lives to produce that which is good and righteous.
Do read the whole of Eddie’s second sermon at this link.