[Jesus said to his disciples,] 47“The kingdom of heaven is like a net thrown into the sea, which collects fish of every kind. 48When it is full they haul it ashore and sit down to put what is good into buckets. What is bad they throw away. 49Thus it will be at the end of the age. The angels will go out and separate the wicked from the righteous 50and throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.
51“Do you understand all these things?” They answered, “Yes.” 52And he replied, “Then every scribe who has been instructed in the kingdom of heaven is like the head of a household who brings from his storeroom both the new and the old.” 53When Jesus finished these parables, he went away from there.
Net thrown into the sea. The image of a net thrown into the sea, collecting fish of every kind, is an assurance that God does not discriminate. God calls everyone and is open to all. God accepts all of us. He does not exclude anybody. God wants to save all.
However, the next image of the catch of fish being sorted is a warning that there will be a final judgment. There will separation of the good from the bad. We will be judged if we have lived up to God’s expectations and acted according to God’s ways. If we have lived good and moral lives, we will never be separated from God, we are assured that we will never be “thrown away.”
Is the life we are now living an indication that we are among the good fish?
How can we be assured that we will not be “thrown away”?