PARABLES

PARABLES

PARABLES INTERPRETATION THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER (Mark 4:2-9) 1. CONTEXT The hearers were farmers and they knew what Jesus was talking about.

2. MYTH BEING ATTACKED Among the hearers there was a belief that a 100% reward for any undertaking performed was to be expected if one was blessed by God. For those who are blessed every effort was expected to receive a 100% reward. Failure to get 100% reward was a sign of not being blessed. This is just a myth because real life is not like that. Some efforts go unrewarded.

3. ONE POINT MEANING This is a parable of encouragement because it teaches about the certainty of the wastage of effort or resources in any given undertaking. In any given undertaking there is always some wasted effort. A preacher may do his or her business, but not everyone who hears the word may repent.

However, despite the wasted effort, a handsome reward is always got. Some people always repent. Some people may reject the Good News of the kingdom of God, but there will always be people who are ready for the kingdom. Note: the allegorical interpretation given for this parable is believed to be a creation of the early Christian community not from Jesus.

4. SUB-MEANINGS None. 5. IN CONNECTION WITH THE KINGDOM OF GOD When people spread the Good News, they must not be disappointed when many people do not seem to be converted. They should not worry because one or more people are converted. When people preach and people do not seem to be transformed, there should be one or more people whose

lives are transformed by our preaching. THE MUSTARD SEED (Mark 4:30ff) 1. CONTEXT It is that of farming. 2. MYTH There was a strong belief that the kingdom of God would come at once. 3. ONE POINT MEANING

The kingdom of God starts from one person until many people accept it. It grows in number. The certainty of the kingdom is its humble beginnings. 4. SUB-MEANINGS None 5. CONNECTION WITH THE KINGDOM OF GOD The kingdom of God starts from humble beginnings until it spreads to all areas. THE LEAVEN (Matthew 13:33-35)

1. CONTEXT It is that of baking. It seems bread was the staple food for Jesus audience. 2. MYTH It was believed that the kingdom of God would start at once covering the whole world just like a bolt of lightning. 3. ONE POINT MEANING The kingdom of God would start from little influences

and it defuses into the whole world. There is a growth in its influence. 4. SUB-MEANINGS None 5. CONNECTION WITH THE KINGDOM The kingdom of God starts from humble beginnings. 6. APPLICATION THE PRODIGAL SON (Luke 15:11-32)

1. CONTEXTS Family life 2. MYTHS The audience believed that there were sins which were unforgivable. SINS 1.Asking for inheritance before fathers death. 2.Going to a far away country.

3.Squandering the money in loose living. 4.Herding pigs. 5.Eating with pigs. 3. ONE POINT MEANING God unconditionally accepts any sinner who repents. 4. SUB-MEANINGS There is no displacement of those already in the kingdom by the repenting sinners. There is

enough room for everyone. 5. CONNECTION WITH THE KINGDOM OF GOD The kingdom of God is for all people who repent. THE PARABLE OPF THE LABOURERS (Matthew 20:1-15) 1. CONTEXT Farming and hiring. 2. MYTH

The hearers strongly believed in the doctrine of meritocracy. The mercy and reward from God could be merited through ones own labors. One could work for his salvation. 3. ONE POINT MEANING The parable teaches that when God gives his salvation he does not consider the issue of merit, but that of need.

Nobody qualifies for the kingdom of God through merit. No one can earn his own salvation. It can only be received through Gods grace. There will be no consideration of ones input or labor. God gives it to those who need it. In this parable everyone needed money,

and money was given irrespective of ones labors. 4. SUB-MEANINGS People should not begrudge God when he blesses those who need his grace. 5. CONNECTION WITH THE KINGDOM OF GOOD God looks at a persons works at the time of his/her death.

He is not concerned about the duration one had been converted. THE GOOD SAMARITAN (Luke 10:25-37) 1. CONTEXT Neighborliness. 2. MYTHS (a) To be able to interpret this parable one has to

analyze the Greek words for neighbour. Geiton: means someone related to you for example, sister, brother, aunt, etc. Plesion: means someone sitting next to you; one before your eyes; the one whom you are able to reach and render assistance. The Jews thought of a neighbour as geiton. Aliens were always viewed with suspicion. (b) There was also a pollution system. Jews were not allowed to touch dead bodies.

If they did, they would be unclean. The priest and the Levite were unable to help because of that system. That purity code prevented people from doing good. 3. ONE POINT MEANING My neighbour is the one to whom I can reach out and render my help; the one in need of my help. 4. SUB-MEANINGS

Some of our religious and cultural commitments hinder us from doing Gods work. 5. CONNECTION WITH THE KINGDOM OF GOD God will accept people into his kingdom irrespective of their race and social status.

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