"church" folk, bad fish, churchgoers, day of reckoning, dragnet, false “church” members, false preachers, False Teachers, good "catch", good fish, Great Commission, hard to swallow truths, moral lesson, parable, pretend believers, separtion, sobering truth, true believers, uncomfortable truth
Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was thrown into the sea and gathered fish of every kind. When it was full, men drew it ashore and sat down and sorted the good into containers but threw away the bad. ~ Matthew 13:47-48, ESV
The Dragnet parable definitely is a picture of the Work of Christ and His Disciples, who invite people to enter God’s Kingdom through faith in the Gospel of Christ—the dragnet. The Lord’s main point in this parable is that the Great Commission eventually reaches many people who say they are His, but the hard-hitting truth is that myriads of them do not belong to Him. Put differently, just like the dragnet catches all kinds of fish—regardless of their usefulness—Christ’s Gospel draws all kinds of people, including the multitudes who never repent and/or never follow Christ.
The above spiritual truth and Divine Truth are why in The Dragnet parable Christ warns us about the false teachers, false preachers, and false church members who masquerade as Christians. He also teaches us that—just like the caught fish cannot be sorted until the fishermen pull their net ashore—all of the pretend Christians are not known until the end of the Age of Grace. The Lord communicates these hard to swallow truths through the bad fish in the net symbolism. This parable’s bad fish in the net symbolize the seeds of God’s enemy that are planted in the net to disrupt and discredit God’s Kingdom—much like the tares planted in the field of wheat in Christ’s Wheat and Tares parable. Then too—like in The Wheat and Tares parable—this Dragnet parable refers to the end of the Age separation of righteous Christians and unrighteous pretenders.
Once the separations are completed, both the bad fish and the tares are judged and then thrown into the Lake of Fire. Moreover, like the wheat, the good fish enter the Millennial Kingdom as mortal believers in unglorified bodies—the people who repopulate the Earth.
The Lord’s moral lesson in His Dragnet parable is this: There is a day of reckoning coming—the day when the Lord separates true believers from pretend unbelievers. Christ also teaches us that being caught in the net in no way means that every fish is a good catch. These Divine Truths are why we need to realize that people’s weekly church attendance and weekly participation in church activities are not signs of authentic Christianity. The sobering truth is that there are way more bad fish than we know who attend church services and participate in church activities, while the born again, saved, blood-bought and Holy Spirit-filled believers are fewer.
A word to the wise should be sufficient. Shalom.
Keep it real…Live it out…Watch it work!
~ from my manuscript – Keeping It Real: Daily Renewing the Mind