Posted by: powellsinsantacruz | July 15, 2013

Parables

We have just started a sermon series at Church on the Parables of Jesus. Adrian Plass describes a parable as a story that entertains at the front door while the truth slips in a side window.

They are mainly short and simple stories, but we have to be careful in how we interpret them. The meaning, the truth, is not always as simple as it appears at first. Jesus actually said that he spoke in parables because people would hear them but not understand. There is something mysterious about the parables. This challenges me. I often feel that I need to overexplain everything, making sure I have presented every side of the Gospel and that people need to have a full understanding to have faith. They don’t always. Jesus did not teach this way, I don’t need to either.  

Through parables we get to see our own lives from a new vantage point.

When reading the parables it’s always helpful to ask which character in the parable we are. There is often one character who describes us- our situation, our personality. It’s not always a flattering comparison as well. Yesterday I preached on the parable of the prodigal son and the character in that parable I am most like is the older son. He is annoying, judgemental and proud and at the end of the story he is outside the party and we don’t get to find out if he goes in or not. Nice.

This is a warning for me. I know the Father. I have the opportunity to be with in and enjoy spending time with my Heavenly Father, so am I doing that? Or am I too focused on rule-keeping and working? I want to enjoy the party too, just like the younger son. I hope this truth is slipping into my mind bit by bit.

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