On July 10 2020, we shared that Jesus Christ teaches us using parables. Our Gospel reading then was the parable of the sower and the seeds. In today’s teaching Jesus himself answers the question from his followers about why he teaches using parables? And importantly to me, and I hope also for you, Jesus Christ interprets the meanings within this parable to help reaffirm our understandings.
Today’s reading is from the Gospel According to Matthew 13:10-23,43.
At that time, the disciples of Jesus came to him and said to him, “Why do you speak to the crowds in parables?” And he answered them, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given.
For to him who has will more be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who has not, even what he has will be taken away.
This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand.
With them indeed is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah which says: ‘You shall indeed hear but never understand, and you shall indeed see but never perceive. For this people’s heart has grown dull, and their ears are heavy of hearing, and their eyes they have closed, lest they should perceive with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and turn for me to heal them.’
But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear.
Truly, I say to you, many prophets and righteous men longed to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.
“Hear then the parable of the sower.
When any one hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what is sown in his heart; this is what was sown along the path.
As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; yet he has no root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away.
As for what was sown among thorns, this is he who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the delight in riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful.
As for what was sown on good soil, this is he who hears the word and understands it; he indeed bears fruit, and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.
He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”