Subscribe to God’s HelpWhat temptations are you battling?
Top Music Videos
So Many Parables
Jesus always used stories and illustrations like these when speaking to the crowds. In fact, He never spoke to them without using such parables (v.34).
Parables. Jesus told a ton of them: The parable of the sower (Matthew 13:3), the mustard seed (vv.Matthew 13:31), the hidden treasure in the field (Matthew 13:44), the vineyard workers (20:1-16), the good Samaritan (Luke 10:30), the lost sheep (15:4-7), the prodigal son (vv.11-32), and so on.
But why did Jesus tell so many parables? Matthew tells us that parables were Jesus’ primary method of explaining to the masses what His kingdom was all about (Matthew 13:34). In His kingdom, God’s generosity leads Him to treat everyone equally (20:1-16). Faithful stewardship is commended (25:14-30). People across the world have a place in His kingdom (Luke 13:29). The humble are exalted (18:14).
Jesus’ short stories were also packed full of clues as to how the kingdom of heaven can manifest itself here on earth. Jesus hinted that His kingdom can come to earth from even the smallest of things (the mustard seed). It’s displayed when compassion is shown to people far different from us (the good Samaritan). Heaven breaks through to earth when forgiveness and restoration is extended to any sinner who repents (the lost son).
Those who took the time to listen to and wrestle with what Jesus was saying were able to see ancient, kingdom secrets that had been “hidden since the creation of the world” (Matthew 13:35). They were able to understand that He was establishing a revolutionary way of life that they could plug into as both beneficiaries and ambassadors.
Sadly, not everyone who heard Jesus listened. The religious establishment dismissed the clues because they didn’t fit into their nationalistic agenda. Still, many did listen—Jews and Gentiles alike—and it transformed their lives.
As we read the story of Jesus today, let’s pick up His clues and be about building His kingdom.
Check out John 12:23 and note that the ultimate “twist” to Jesus’ kingdom story was that heaven couldn’t come to earth without His death and resurrection.
Start reading through the Gospels to see just how often Jesus emphasized that His heavenly kingdom was coming to earth. What are you doing to build Jesus’ kingdom?
- Subscribe to God’s Help - What temptations are you battling?...read more
- Taking on Too Much - What are you trying to take on that only God can do...read more
- Representing Jesus - In what practical ways can you effectively represent Christ?...read more
- Myth No More - Why must God judge His enemies and make things right?...read more
- Hidden Sins - How have you been trying to deal with your sin?...read more
- The Kingdom We Long For - What makes you most desperate for the fullness of God’s kingdom to arrive?...read more
- Offering Refuge and Hope - How can you practically and prayerfully support refugees?...read more
- Songs Before Dawn - How will you use your voice to let the good news ring out today?...read more
- Uber Conversations - How do the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit model a loving relationship?...read more
- Prayer on an Airplane - How can you prepare to share the hope you have in Jesus?...read more
- Adding Interest? - Is there something you’re holding back from God?...read more
- Lord of the Cosmos - What does Jesus being “Lord of the cosmos” mean for your future?...read more
- Farming Hope - What trial are you facing today?...read more
- Because of Sunday - How can you learn to imitate Jesus and His mindset as you face conflict?...read more
- Our Real and Present God - When have you grappled with questions about God’s nearness and presence?...read more
- Gift of Tears - What triggers your emotions?...read more