Some Facts About “Tares”




There can be little doubt that the zizania of the parable in Matthew 13: 25 denotes the weed called “darnel” (Lolium temulentum ). The darnel before it comes into ear is very similar in appearance to wheat; hence the command that the zizania should be left to the harvest, lest while men plucked up the tares “they should root up also the wheat with them.” Dr. Stanley, however, speaks of women and children picking up from the wheat in the cornfields of Samaria the tall green stalks, still called by the Arabs zuwan . “These stalks,” he continues, “if sown designedly throughout the fields, would be inseparable from the wheat, from which, even when growing naturally and by chance, they are at first sight hardly distinguishable.”

See also Thomson (“The Land and the Book” p. 420): “The grain is in just the proper stage to illustrate the parable. In those parts where the grain has headed out, the tares have done the same, and then a child cannot mistake them for wheat or barley; but where both are less developed, the closest scrutiny will often fail to detect them. Even the farmers, who in this country generally weed their fields, do not attempt to separate the one from the other.” The grains of the Lolium temulentum (darnel), if eaten, produce convulsions, and even death. (Smith’s Bible Dictionary definition)


When you read the above definition it is easy to see why God wants us to always have our spiritual armor on, always be prayed up, and let the Holy Spirit control our lives. It is the only way we will be able to discern between the tare and the wheat in the early stages of their growth.

Some people are so good at deception that they can get involved in a church and go for years being the source of many problems before people finally start to see the truth about who they really are. They start out like the “darnel” and pretend to be a Godly person who cares about the growth and health of the church. It might even be that these people don’t join the church to specifically cause problems; they just refuse to surrender to God’s Way. They feel their way is better, or just want to be in control. They might have good morals and would never break the law or do anything really bad; they just can’t seem to be satisfied unless they feel they are in control of their surroundings.

The last sentence in the definition is very fitting also, because it says that the grains of the tare can produce convulsions and even death in a person, which is what a true tare will produce in a church if not found out and dealt with.

 John 4: 1

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.


Philippians 1: 9-10

And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ,


Hebrews 5: 14

But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.


The Bible makes it plain that we are in a battle against evil, so we need to make sure that we can distinguish what might be evil but painted in a beautiful package of deception vs. what is truth but might be in the most ordinary of packages.

If you have believed on Jesus as your Lord and Savior, the Holy Spirit resides within you to show you the truth about all things. You just have to make sure you are open to receive it.



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God has radically changed my life, and I want to share the awesome things I am learning with you. I have found that the Holy Spirit is an awesome teacher when I listen to, obey, and apply what He teaches to my life.


This post written by Cathy Deaton.

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About Cathy Deaton


My name is Cathy Deaton, Owner of Fan the Flame Ministries. God has radically changed my life, and He has shown me that I am to share the awesome things I am learning with the Millennial Generation (1981 Р1996), but I love connecting with Christians of all ages.  I have found that the Holy Spirit is an awesome teacher when I listen to, obey, and apply what He teaches to my life. You truly can make a difference for God in an uncertain world.