Jesus Teaches in Parables

Jack Wyrtzen used lots of stories in his preaching. One day someone was talking with one of the Word of Life staff members and said, “ I heard Jack preach one of his “skyscraper messages” the other night.” The staff member asked what he meant by a “s … More

Parable Teaching

In our passage today we look at three parables of Jesus, and each parable contains a paradox about God’s Kingdom. A paradox is simply a statement or idea that appears to be contradictory.

  1. A Lamp (4:21-23) - Even though God’s kingdom came to our world concealed, God wants us to make it known.
  2. A Scale (Mark 4:24-25) - Even though God’s kingdom is difficult to understand, we can understand when we invest ourselves into it.
  3. A Growing Seed (Mark 4:26-29) - Even though God calls us to share the kingdom message, God’s kingdom will come apart from human efforts.

Now the hearing in this context is listening to Jesus and his kingdom message, especially as it relates to the parables (vv. 24-25). It is the measure that we use in our hearing that determines the measure we receive in understanding. If we have some understanding of Jesus’ message, we’ll be given more. But if we have no understanding, then we’ll get nothing. When good seed is sown in good soil growth and production takes time and patience (vv. 26-29). If we see a plant every day we probably will not notice growth taking place. It is only when we don’t see it for several days that we notice the difference. The same is true in the Christian life. After the seed has been sown it should be given time to grow. We should not expect spiritual maturity right away. The growth is usually very gradual, but if we are patient, one day there will be a harvest.


A parable can be explained as an earthly story with a heavenly meaning. I find it interesting that Jesus always used stories to tell spiritual truth. This is a reminder to me that in all of my teaching and preaching I need to be using stories (parables) to share the truth of God’s Word with others. This is one reason why I want to begin each day of these devotional thoughts with an illustration.

Mark 4:21-29 (English Standard Version)

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