What is the purpose of a Parable?


            And the disciples came and said to him, “Why do you speak to them in parables?”

            He answered and said to them, “Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given.  For whoever has, to him more will be given, and he will have abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him.  Therefore I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they don’t hear, nor do they understand.  And in them the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled, which says:


            ‘Hearing you will hear and shall not understand, and seeing you will see and not perceive; for the hearts of this people have grown dull.  Their hearts are hard of         hearing, and their eyes they have closed, lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, lest they should understand with their hearts and turn, so that I should            heal them.’


But blessed are your eyes for they see, and your ears for they hear; for assuredly, I say to you that many prophets and righteous men desired to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it” (Mathew 13: 10-17.)



            The word parable means ‘alongside.’  The earth is a reflection of what exists in heaven; so earthly things and heavenly things run parallel, or ‘alongside’ one another.  It has been said that “A parable is an earthly story with a heavenly meaning.”  The disciples were curious to know why Jesus used parables, and they themselves were confused about their meaning.  The physical senses and the heart also run parallel.  The true understanding of these parables couldn’t be perceived with the eyes or the ears, but only with the heart.  The ears could hear the earthly story, but only the heart could hear and ponder the deeper heavenly, spiritual meaning.  In this scripture he says, “for the hearts of this people have grown dull; their hearts are hard of hearing.”  He also says, “Lest they should understand with their hearts.”  Those who didn’t understand had made their hearts so hard that the truth had entered their ears, but couldn’t make it to their hearts.  The quoted prophecy used in this scripture is from the book of Isaiah, (written hundreds of years before Christ’s arrival.)  The prophecy foretold that the messiah (the one God would send to save the world from evil) would teach in parables, for the purposes of separating those who wished to understand from those who did not; this prophecy is fulfilled in the ministry and life of Jesus Christ.

            I was what you might call ‘a stubborn child.’  Growing up I wanted to do things my way.  As I grew older, my dad would tell me helpful things like, “You need to get a job,” to which I would reply, “I know, I know.”  Apparently my eldest sister had many of the same problems, and when I would say, “I know, I know” he would remind me that I sounded like her.  What my dad was saying is, “When you say I know, you really don’t know.”  I was giving my dad lip service, and he knew it, and I knew it.  If I had decided to really agree with him, “I know” would have turned in to “I did.”  My heart was hardened.  I was capable of hearing what my dad was saying, but I refused to let it become something I accepted in my heart as true.  Denial is a defense against change; those who don’t want to change will refuse the truth as if it was death itself.

            Nothing changes in a person’s life until they open up their hearts and decide to let the light of God in.  Many people are incapable of hearing from God because they have ruled Him out; they don’t want Him to enter them because they don’t want to change.  Many people don’t spend time in the bible, and don’t try to understand the deeper spiritual things of God that He has provided because they are afraid.  Many people use “I knows.”  “I know I should go to church.”  “I know I should pray.”  “I know I should accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and savior and turn to him, but I’m not ready yet.”  But if anyone decides to let God in to their heart, just a little bit, he opens up and pours his truth and understanding in to them in abundance.  Are you willing to stand and open your heart to the Lord?  Are you capable of letting down your walls? Will you stop saying “I know I should,” and start saying “I want to know him?”  If you are willing, go to a quiet place and ask him in a prayer to come in to your heart, and in to your life, and he will.  You will see with new eyes, and you will hear the truth of God with a new heart; a heart that will beat for with His heart, and “you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” 

            “Lord Heavenly Father, we ask and pray that You open our hearts and make us hunger for Your understanding, knowledge, and truth.  Help us Lord to let down our walls, and hear with our hearts, and understand the spiritual, heavenly things that You have said, and will continue to say to us.  Father, speak to us, show us, come in to us, and make Your home in us.  We ask that you might share Your heart with us.  We love You Father, we praise You, and we thank You, and we ask and pray all of these things, in Jesus Christ’s name, Amen.”  God bless all of you.

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