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February 28, 2013

introducing: wheat

I am not a rapid reader. Sometimes we share from what we're reading, and my friend asked me if I'm still in Isaiah, because he noticed I was there for a long time. I've actually made it to Jeremiah. I've been spending quite a while with this guy, too. Last week, Jeremiah challenged me to the core again. He's a good place to be.

The Creator issues a task in Jeremiah 23:28, "He who has My word, let him speak it faithfully." It is followed up by this phrase, "what is the chaff to the wheat?" A small pair of phrases that ring with powerful implications.

We get confused. We often think our task is to prove chaff's worthlessness. We hold it up in our palms. We blow on it. We talk about what colour it is. We write reports on the texture. We imagine that one day, after enough arguments and witty points about chaff, our friends will give in and say: "Yes, you've convinced me, this chaff isn't much good."

But the best way to show someone that chaff is worthless is to introduce them to wheat. Then the topic of the value of chaff will become a non-issue. Think about it: does wheat get worried that chaff will someday take some of its market share? Do farmers sit around and discuss the merits of planting chaff rather than wheat? The answer is obvious. Nothing makes the worthlessness of chaff more obvious than the presence of the real deal, the wheat.

It is written, "He who has My word, let him speak it faithfully." Sometimes we get distracted from the simplicity and purity of the task. Yes, there may be a time to discuss chaff. To issue a reminder to people who've mistaken chaff for wheat. But that's not our main task. Understand? The key task is to speak the word faithfully.

Jeremiah 23:29 describes that word as having power: Is not My word like a fire?” says the L0rd, “And like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces? Spurgeon said, "The Word of G0d is like a lion. You don’t have to defend a lion. All you have to do is let the lion loose, and the lion will defend itself.” When we worry about the wheat not differentiating itself from the chaff, we're saying that the word is not sufficient. Not fire. Not a hammer.

This is a reminder for every day. Analyze and familiarize yourself with the wheat, not the chaff. Hold it up, blow on it, talk about it, write reports on it. Most importantly, spread the wheat out faithfully. Let the wind of time blow. The chaff will be gone, the wheat will remain. It's that powerful. It's that simple.


  1. Well said, Julie, and I totally agree! I just got out of Jeremiah not too long ago, went through Lamentations and now I'm in Ezra. Good lessons! Never thought I'd enjoy these books this much.
    Thanks for sharing and for the challenge!

  2. Thank you, Keri. We've been talking about this theme with my friends here, and it is so encouraging and true: sow wheat, don't worry about chaff. In a sense, our instruction is so simple. Glad you're enjoying the prophets, too. So important for us to have an easily accessible sack of wheat so we're ready to sow! :)