God is Setting All Things Right. So I am Blogging Through the Bible in a Year.

Monday, October 14, 2013

October 14 - Matthew 13; Luke 8: Jesus Unearths Kingdom Truths through Parables

Today’s Reading: Matthew 13; Luke 8

The Message

English Standard Version

Thought to Guide Your Reading

Jesus tells parables to demonstrate the Kingdom to those who are not ready for the straight truth.

Summary in 100 Words or Less

Jesus used stories to unearthed truths about the Kingdom.
The disciples asked why Jesus used parables. "They do not know how the Kingdom works. The stories prepare them to accept the truths. A well-trained student can describe them to Kingdom-seekers."
Jesus' storytelling fulfilled prophecy.
Nazareth was puzzled by Jesus—the carpenter's son who now possessed great wisdom.
Jesus calmed a storm.
At the Gerasenes, Jesus excised the demons torturing a man. Locals asked that He leave.
Jairus begged Jesus to heal his daughter. On the way a woman touched Jesus and was healed. Jesus raised Jairus' daughter from the dead.

How Today’s Reading Contributes to the Gospel: God is Setting All Things Right

Jesus used stories to prepare people for the hard truths of the Kingdom.

Jesus understood that some people wanted to set things right but may have had something in their life blocking the truth of the Kingdom from their hearts. He used stories to soften their hearts to receive the truth. Once they could accept the truths, they would exponentially grow. In essence, what Jesus is doing, using the language from the parable of the soils, is tilling the roadside, removing the stones, and weeding the ground to help the difficult soil produce more grain. Some people need preparation for understanding the truths about setting things right.
When we try to pass on the truths about the Kingdom, we must also remember some need preparation before they can hear the straight truths. This is another reason we should model the Kingdom in our lives. They must see the Kingdom at work before they hear about the Kingdom.

God allows evil people to live among His Chosen People to protect His Chosen People.

This should answer the question of why evil people are blessed. God does not want to destroy His Chosen People as collateral.

The Kingdom is worth selling out.

God's Reign is worthy of giving up everything else to join.

Jesus brought everything into the open.

Jesus wanted His disciples to share the truth about the Kingdom to the world because doing so would encourage them to set things right. When God's Chosen People only share the Good News with few, only few will accept the Good News.

Jesus' Work is hindered only by those who fail to trust Him.

No one should blame the Apostles for being scared on the lake. Many people died there. Their fears were real. The problem was their fears outweighed their trust in Jesus. When our fears outweigh our trust in God, God's Work is hindered.

The Gerasenes were afraid of too much change.

The demon-possessed man was a scourge on their land. When he was suddenly and dramatically healed they were unprepared for the great power and great change that came. So Jesus left the man to give the message to them. When people are scared of too much change, let the Message pass through people who are insiders. They can have better success.

Are you willing to take a risk in trusting God?

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