Throughout the recorded words of Jesus in the gospels we often find Him teaching lessons to his audience in the form of parables. In this way of teaching, Jesus could put over a deeply spiritual principle by putting it into the context of everyday life, particularly country life. We find such a teaching in Matthew and chapter 13.

In this chapter Jesus tells various parables bringing out a number of spiritual lessons using the principle of a farmer sowing seed onto a field and the process of the plant growing and eventually yielding a crop which is harvested and then threshed.

We find the listener to these stories being of two types. Firstly, there would be the individual who would enjoy the story and leave with no second thought. But there would be those who would think about what Jesus had said and ask themselves, ‘why does this man speak like this?’ This is exactly the reaction Jesus wanted to achieve. Particularly, it was the reaction he hoped would come from His disciples.

So, no doubt, He was overjoyed when His disciples ask Him the question in Matthew 13:10 “Why do you speak to them (the audience) in parables?”. His answer is: “Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given”.

If we want to know and understand the mysteries of the kingdom of God, we have to read God’s word the Bible and understand its message. It is no good just listening to someone telling us nice stories from the Bible and then walking away and going back to doing those things in our lives that might be offensive to God; we have to listen to the lessons we hear, understand them and then put them into practice in our lives.

In those parables about the farmer sowing his seed, Jesus encourages His hearers to listen to the words of God and let them take root. Those little seedlings then have to be fed by reading the Bible so that they can grow into a mature plant that can be harvested and stored in God’s coming kingdom on this earth.

Can you do that?

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