READ Mark 4:10-12 (with Matthew 12:10-17)
Yesterday was a look at the first parable of Jesus about the soils (the sower). I imagined how those listeners would have responded to this as they walked home. (See yesterday’s “long” post.)
When the crowd had gone, the disciples came to Him with a question. Mark 4:10.
By looking at Matthew’s fuller account of the disciples coming to Jesus afterwards, we see what they asked Him.
“Why do you speak in parables?” Good Question.
Jesus’s answer, “To YOU has been given the secret of the Kingdom of God, but for THOSE OUTSIDE…everything is in parables.”
Huh? Doesn’t Jesus want everybody to know about the Kingdom of God, and how to get into it????
(Your assignment: Check out the following passages in Matthew and I’ll answer that question – if you still need it – afterwards.
1. Matthew 4:23 – What does this say about what Jesus was doing after He chose his disciples?
2. Matthew 5:1 – 7:29 – (with particular attention to 5:2 and 7:28/29) Okay, What do all these verses show in detail that Jesus was DOING all this time?
3. In the next chapters of Matthew, we see Jesus continuing to heal the sick and deliver the demon possessed (such compassion!) and to teach His OWN DISCIPLES some strong things about persecution and the end times, etc. WHY is He now mostly just teaching THEM??
The end of Matthew 11 shows the Jewish officials accusing him of having an unclean spirit, and his family wanting Him to come away and get some food and rest. (Wednesday’s post)
And THEN…………… he gets into a boat and teaches the crowd on the shore….. in a PARABLE. (Yesterday’s post)
Do you see why?
The crowds have been divided into 1) those who believe and follow Jesus, and 2) those only seeking healing or to hassle Him.
Jesus answers their WHY question here,
“To the one who HAS (belief in Him and understanding of who He is) more will be given and he will have an abundance. BUT from the one who HAS NOT (those who reject Him and his teaching), even what they have (clear teaching to this point) will be taken away.”
“THIS is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do NOT see (me as Savior) and hearing, they do NOT hear (my teaching) nor do they understand.”
Then Jesus give a blessing to those who DO believe and follow Him,
“Blessed are your eyes, for they see and your ears for they hear. For truly I say to you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see and did not see it, and to hear what you hear and did not hear it.
Then (Mark 4:14-20) Jesus goes on to tell them the meaning of the Parable of the (Sower and the) Soils, which – if they understand – will help to understand the rest of Jesus’ “kingdom” parables.