June 17

Mark 4:30-34

“With many such parables he spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it; he did not speak to them except in parables, but he explained everything in private to his disciples.” vss. 33-34

As a teacher Jesus regularly used parables to pass on the great truths of the kingdom of God. For the most part they’re short and uncomplicated, and use familiar examples to give glimpses of God’s work. They’re similar to metaphors or allegories and are generally intended to communicate one main point. They were easy for people to remember but difficult to understand. Sometimes people didn’t get them at all…and even the disciples found them hard to figure out. But that’s how it always is with the great truths of life. People have often used brief maxims to summarize the guidelines for happy and joyful living. We hang such pithy sayings on the walls of our homes and have them printed on t-shirts. With all that wisdom so readily available it would seem that most people should be content…but that isn’t necessarily so. We can quote the verses and say the words, but there’s great mystery involved in kingdom living, and it can take a lifetime to figure things out…and some folks never do. Their eyes are never opened and their ears never hear! What a blessing it is when the truth captures our hearts and we hear what the Spirit is saying! What began as a tiny seed becomes the tree of life!

Thought for the Day: Why did Jesus use parables?

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