The Transforming Journey of a Scribe Disciple: Matthew 13:51-52
““51) Have you understood all these things?” They *said to Him, “Yes.” 52) And Jesus said to them, “Therefore every scribe who has become a disciple of the kingdom of heaven is like a head of a household, who brings out of his treasure things new and old.”” Matthew‬ ‭13‬:‭51‬-‭52‬ ‭
As Jesus concludes this series of parables, He asks His disciples if they understood His teachings? It was a good question. They had asked Him previous questions that led to an expanded explanation of the parable of the sower and the tares among the wheat. (See Matthew 13:36)
Like a good teacher, Jesus now gives them time to inquire about the other parables about the kingdom of heaven. They responded that they had it nailed.
I have discovered that knowledge is usually accompanied by a test in life. Though the parable of the hidden treasure and the costly pearl emphasized the surpassing value of the kingdom of heaven, each of the disciples were soon going to be tested. During His darkest hour of trial and crucifixion, most of them were going to flee or deny Him. One of them even betrayed Him for thirty pieces of silver. At this point in life, they all failed the value test!
I maintain there is a huge difference between head knowledge and embracing truth with our heart. We do not really understand any biblical truth until it is integrated into our lives. There is a process of discovery, learning and application of new revelation into our lives. It takes time for a new concept to become a personal conviction.
This may have been the meaning behind Paul’s prayer for believers as recorded in Ephesians 1:15-23. Growth and maturity in the life of a believer is a continual process of truth encounter and inner transformation.
The scribes were apt examples of the learning and growth process that awaits every new Christian. They were masters of the Old Testament Law. It both helped and hindered them in their Christian life. Walking in the Spirit by faith, agape love and grace would be a giant leap forward from their former legalism, self righteousness and condescension. At the same time, every principle in the New Testament is anchored in the Old Testament. They had an amazing foundation to build on. So how does this relate to you and me?
Each of us brings past experiences, values, life philosophies, religious traditions and worldly wisdom into our Christian life. These things are “inscribed” deeply within us. Spiritual growth is a continual process of putting off the old, being renewed in the spirit of your mind and then putting on the new self based on truth. (See Ephesians 4:20-24)
I can picture the smile on Jesus as He finished His teaching and asked His disciples; “Have you understood all these things?” When they replied “Yes!”; He alone understood the long road before them. It would be a long journey for their head knowledge to be forged into heart wisdom. Every Christian is on that journey, but how wonderful it is when we yield to the process!
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global