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Seventeenth Sunday of the year 2017
Today three more parables of the kingdom Ã¢â‚¬â€œ all in their way quite curious Ã¢â‚¬â€œ for there is far more than a simple story Ã¢â‚¬â€œ there are a number of questions and speculations Ã¢â‚¬â€œ
The treasure buried in a field Ã¢â‚¬â€œ it may even be a story based on a recent event Ã¢â‚¬â€œ the Old Testament alone shows that over the years, many parts of the countryside had been fought over Ã¢â‚¬â€œ and it is more than possible that at a time of danger, a farmer has buried treasure in a field Ã¢â‚¬â€œ but has been overwhelmed by events Ã¢â‚¬â€œ and is never able to return to recover it Ã¢â‚¬â€œ but who in fact does the treasure belong to? Ã¢â‚¬â€œ you will notice that the purchaser of the field does not reveal the source of his new wealth but hides it again Ã¢â‚¬â€œ and buys the field Ã¢â‚¬â€œ possibly it will remain a secret source of wealth Ã¢â‚¬â€œ gradually recovered and spent over the years Ã¢â‚¬â€œ nothing public as there is risk that the previous owner of the land will negate the contract, the previous owner of the treasure may stake a claim, or even the State may intervene Ã¢â‚¬â€œ
And then the pearl of great price Ã¢â‚¬â€œ again a curious story Ã¢â‚¬â€œ this is not something casual Ã¢â‚¬â€œ it is a merchant looking for fine pearls Ã¢â‚¬â€œ someone with knowledge and experience Ã¢â‚¬â€œ but he really stake everything on a single item Ã¢â‚¬â€œ with all the risks that this involves Ã¢â‚¬â€œ that it might be damaged or flawed Ã¢â‚¬â€œ and the problems of security whilst he owns it Ã¢â‚¬â€œ even if he hopes to sell it on at a later date at a substantial profit Ã¢â‚¬â€œ over and over again, in the matters in which I am involved Ã¢â‚¬â€œ the norm is that risks should be reasonably spread.
Perhaps the image of the fisherman sorting his catch is easier Ã¢â‚¬â€œ putting the good ones in a basket and throwing the rubbish away.
And then the final image of the householder Ã¢â‚¬â€œ bring out from his storeroom things both old and new.
So a fascinating collection of images Ã¢â‚¬â€œ all prefaced with the words Ã¢â‚¬â€œ the kingdom of heavenÃ‚Â is like Ã¢â‚¬â€œ I would remind you that this is not the Church Ã¢â‚¬â€œ this is something more formal, that will come later with the promise to Peter Ã¢â‚¬â€œ I will build my Church Ã¢â‚¬â€œ this is something more general Ã¢â‚¬â€œ the presence of the love of God in the world Ã¢â‚¬â€œ and the way in which individuals will react to it Ã¢â‚¬â€œ and I think that looking at these parables carefully Ã¢â‚¬â€œ one can see that at times it will be high risk Ã¢â‚¬â€œ but also times, when at least partially people will get it wrong Ã¢â‚¬â€œ both the treasure hunter and the pearl merchant think that they have discovered something of enormous value Ã¢â‚¬â€œ their fortunes have been made and they are secure for the rest of their lives Ã¢â‚¬â€œ but beyond this they are taking enormous risks Ã¢â‚¬â€œ and the question must be asked can this justified Ã¢â‚¬â€œ what if they had acted differently – Ã‚Â Ã‚Â Ã‚