The smallest of all agricultural seeds is planted in the field and grows into an unnatural, enormous tree; birds come and nest in it.
To better understand all the parables (the four outside the house and the four within) we must see the structure.
- B Wheat and tares
-- C MUSTARD SEED
--- D Leaven
--- D Treasure
-- C PEARL
- B Drag Net
A The Scribe
Israel was not the smallest of all the nations and this is the state in which God chose to use them.
"The LORD did not set his affection on you and choose you because you were more numerous than other peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples."
The plan for Israel was, and is, that she will be a kingdom of priests for the nations (Ex 19; Zech 8; 1 Peter; etc.). True Israel (the Israel of God), believing Israel, will be small. But she grew into an unnatural tree. Birds represent the evil which came to live comfortable among her.
Israel was scattered throughout the world, like a tree spreading its branches. But the plan was always for her to function in the promised land. As we noted in the previous parable, there is a confusion in our day as to whom is true child of Jacob and who is not.
Daniel 4 should be read. There we see Nebuchadnezzar's dream of the tree. We see his kingdom growing and becoming the habitation of the fowls of the air. It is cut down. Israel was taken into that kingdom. Daniel is God's prophetic vision for Israel. Jews were scattered among the nations, but she will return to her land just as she returned from Babylon. But not all the children of Israel returned. Some remained in Babylon and many others never returned from the previous dispersion into Assyria.
Out of all the nations, God will bring home the children of Israel. Only He know the true from the false.
This is not as easy to see in our day as we see an Israel in the Middle East. We may think Israel has been again confined to the land. However, there are still millions of Jews (open and hidden) scattered among the nations. I believe 1947-48 was the beginning of a prophetic fulfillment, but the fulfillment itself.
I believe the Lord is creating the conditions wherein the clock will once again begin on Israel as the promises of the Acts age will again be "at hand." True Israel will be separated from the "synagogue of Satan," "those who say they are Jews and are not." (Revelation 2-3)
Paranthetically, I would warn any who believe God replaced Israel with the "church." God's promises are yes and amen. He will fulfill The New Covenant with Israel.
Declaring the end from the beginning,
And from ancient times things that are not yet done,
Saying, ‘My counsel shall stand,
And I will do all My pleasure,’“...
Listen to Me, you stubborn-hearted,
Who are far from righteousness:
I bring My righteousness near, it shall not be far off;
My salvation shall not linger.
And I will place salvation in Zion,
For Israel My glory.
-Isaiah 46:10, 12-13
We will see in the Parable of the Peal, which is the Lord's corresponding parable, given inside the house, God's perfecting of true Israel and how much he values her in her suffering.