LIFE OF CHRIST
A Harmony of the Gospels
|(3) Then He
spoke many things to them in parables, saying:
a sower went out to sow. (4) And as he sowed, some
seed fell by the wayside; and the birds came and devoured them.
(5) Some fell on stony places, where they did not have much
earth; and they immediately sprang up because they had no depth of
earth. (6) But when the sun was up they were scorched,
and because they had no root they withered away. (7)
And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up and choked
them. (8) But others fell on good ground and yielded a
crop: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.
(9) He who has ears to hear, let him hear!"
(10) And the disciples came and said to Him, "Why do You speak to
them in parables?"
|(11) He answered and said to them, "Because
it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of
heaven, but to them it has not been given. (12) For
whoever has, to him more will be given, and he will have
abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has will be
taken away from him. (13) Therefore I speak to them in
parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not
hear, nor do they understand. (14) And in them the
prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled, which says:
'Hearing you will hear and shall not understand, And seeing you
will see and not perceive; (15) For the hearts of this
people have grown dull. Their ears are hard of hearing, and
their eyes they have closed, lest they should see with their eyes
and hear with their ears, lest they should understand with their
hearts and turn, so that I should heal them.'
(16) But blessed are your eyes for they see, and your ears
for they hear; (17) for assuredly, I say to you that
many prophets and righteous men desired to see what you see, and
did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.
|(18) "Therefore hear the parable of the sower: (19)
When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand
it, then the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in
his heart. This is he who received seed by the wayside.
(20) But he who received the seed on stony places, this is
he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy;
(21) yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a
while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the
word, immediately he stumbles.
(22) Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who
hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness
of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful.
(23) But he who received seed on the good ground is he who
hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and
produces: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty."
|(1) And again He
began to teach by the sea. And a great multitude was gathered to
Him, so that He got into a boat and sat in it on the sea; and the
whole multitude was on the land facing the sea.
Then He taught them many things by parables, and said to them in
|(3) "Listen! Behold, a sower went out
to sow. (4) And it happened, as he sowed, that some
seed fell by the wayside; and the birds of the air came and
devoured it. (5) Some fell on stony ground, where it
did not have much earth; and immediately it sprang up because it
had no depth of earth. (6) But when the sun was up it
was scorched, and because it had no root it withered away.
(7) And some seed fell among thorns; and the thorns grew up
and choked it, and it yielded no crop. (8) But other
seed fell on good ground and yielded a crop that sprang up,
increased and produced: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a
|(9) And He said to them, "He who has
ears to hear, let him hear!"
(10) But when He was alone, those around Him with the twelve asked
Him about the parable.
And He said to them, "To
you it has been given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God;
but to those who are outside, all things come in parables,
(12) so that
'Seeing they may see and not perceive, and hearing they may hear
and not understand; lest they should turn, and their sins be
|(13) And He said to them, "Do
you not understand this parable? How then will you understand all
(14) The sower sows the word. (15) And these are
the ones by the wayside where the word is sown. When they hear,
Satan comes immediately and takes away the word that was sown in
(16) These likewise are the ones sown on stony ground who,
when they hear the word, immediately receive it with gladness;
(17) and they have no root in themselves, and so endure only
for a time. Afterward, when tribulation or persecution arises for
the word's sake, immediately they stumble.
(18) Now these are the ones sown among thorns; they are the
ones who hear the word, (19) and the cares of this
world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other
things entering in choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.
(20) But these are the ones sown on good ground, those who
hear the word, accept it, and bear fruit: some thirtyfold, some
sixty, and some a hundred."
|(4) And when a great multitude had
gathered, and they had come to Him from every city,
by a parable:
"A sower went out
to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some fell by the wayside; and it
was trampled down, and the birds of the air devoured it. (6)
Some fell on rock; and as soon as it sprang up, it withered away
because it lacked moisture. (7) And some fell
among thorns, and the thorns sprang up with it and choked it.8 But
others fell on good ground, sprang up, and yielded a crop a
had said these things He cried, "He
who has ears to hear, let him hear!"
(9) Then His disciples asked Him, saying, "What does this parable
|(10) And He said, "To you it has been
given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, but to the rest
it is given in parables, that
'Seeing they may not see,
And hearing they may not understand.'
|(11) "Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.
(12) Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the
devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they
should believe and be saved.
(13) But the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear,
receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for
a while and in time of temptation fall away.
(14) Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when
they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and
pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity.
(15) But the ones that fell on the good ground are those
who, having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it
and bear fruit with patience."
Parable is from parabole - denotes "a placing beside".
(from Vine's Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words, Copyright (c)1985,
Thomas Nelson Publishers)
||It signifies "a
placing of one thing beside another" with a view to comparison
||In the New Testament it is found outside the gospels only in Hebrews
9:9 and 11:19
||It is generally used of a somewhat
lengthy utterance or narrative drawn from nature or human
||The object of which is to set forth a
spiritual lesson, e. g., those in Matt 13 and Synoptic parallels
||Sometimes it is used of a short saying
or proverb, e. g., Matt 15:15; Mark 3:23; 7:17; Luke 4:23; 5:36;
||It is the lesson that
is of value; the hearer must catch the analogy if he is to be
most frequently convey truths connected with the subject of the
kingdom of God
Went out to sow
According to Dr. Thomason, this statement is more literally true than
would appear to a hasty reader.
The farmers in Palestine used to go
forth to sow their seed, the fields being at a considerable distance from
their homes, sometimes six or eight miles.
According to Jewish authorities, there was twofold sowing:
||By means of cattle
||A sack with holes was filled with corn
and laid on the back of the animal, so that, as it moved
onward, the seed was thickly scattered
||They cast the seed cast in a
semi-circle by the hand, which was called broadcast
By the wayside
Dean Stanley, approaching the plain of Gennesaret, says: A slight recess
in the hillside, close upon the plain, disclosed at once, in detail and
with a conjunction which I remember nowhere else in Palestine, every
feature of the great parable:
||There was the undulating cornfield
descending to the waters edge
||There was the trodden pathway running
through the midst of it, with no fence or hedge to prevent the
seed from falling here and there on either side of it or upon it;
itself hard with the constant tramp of horse and mule and human
||There was the good
rich soil that distinguishes the whole of that plain and its
neighborhood from the bare hills elsewhere descending into the lake,
and which, where there is no interruption, produces one vast
mass of corn.
||There was the rocky ground of the hillside protruding here and there
through the cornfields, as elsewhere through the grassy slopes.
||There were the large bushes of thorn
springing up like trees in the very midst of the waving wheat.
He who has ears to hear, let him hear
There are three categories of "hearers" - Those who:
||Do not have ears to hear
||They have no spiritual ears, have not
received the salvation offered by Christ, and therefore have no
||Have ears to hear, but do not hear
||These are believers, and have spiritual
ears, but choose to "tune out" what the Word
would say to them, and are stunted in their spiritual growth.
||Have ears to hear, and hear
||The believers who have spiritual ears
and choose to listen to and learn from the Word of God.
They continue to grow and mature spiritually. They are "salt"
and their light shines. Thus bearing much fruit for the master
of the field.
Why do you speak ... in parables?
Some have said Jesus spoke in parables so that the multitudes would
understand His words.
But that is contrary to the reason Jesus gave the disciples in answer to
their question: "Why do you speak to them in parables?"
The reason Jesus gave:
|Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries
of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.
The parables of Jesus, like the pillar of cloud and fire
|turns a dark side towards Egyptians, which
but a light side towards Israelites, which comforts and guides them.
Parables serve the double purpose of revealing and concealing
(from Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary, Electronic
Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by
|Presenting 'the mysteries of the kingdom' to those
who know and relish them,
|But to those who are insensible to spiritual things
yielding only, as so many tales, some temporary entertainment
Matthew 13:13-15 (Amplified
|(13) This is the reason that I speak to them
in parables: because having the power of seeing, they do not see;
and having the power of hearing, they do not hear, nor do they grasp
|(14) In them indeed is the process of fulfillment of the
prophecy of Isaiah, which says: You shall indeed hear and hear but
never grasp and understand; and you shall indeed look and look but
never see and perceive.
|(15) For this nation's heart has grown gross (fat and dull),
and their ears heavy and difficult of hearing, and their eyes they
have tightly closed, lest they see and perceive with their eyes, and
hear and comprehend the sense with their ears, and grasp and
understand with their heart, and turn and I should heal them.
Isaiah 6:9-11 (Amplified
|(9) And He said, Go and tell this people, Hear and hear continually, but
understand not; and see and see continually, but do not apprehend with
|(10) Make the heart of this people fat; and make their ears heavy and shut
their eyes, lest they see with their eyes and hear with their ears and
understand with their hearts and turn again and be healed.
|(11) Then said I, Lord, how long? And He
answered, Until cities lie waste without inhabitant and houses
without man, and the land is utterly desolate.
And with many such parables He spoke the word to them as they were able to
hear it. But without a parable He did not speak to them. And when
they were alone, He explained all things to His disciples.
Matthew 13:34, 35
All these things Jesus spoke to the multitude in parables; and
without a parable He did not speak to them, that it might be fulfilled
which was spoken by the prophet, saying:
|"I will open My mouth in parables;
I will utter things kept secret from the foundation of the world."
The Mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven
Mysteries - from the Greek musteria
classical Greek, applied to certain religious celebrations to which
persons were admitted by formal initiation, and the precise character of
which is unknown.
A mystery does not denote an unknowable thing, but one which is
withdrawn from knowledge or manifestation, and which cannot be known
without special manifestation of it.
Hence appropriate to the things of
the kingdom of heaven, which could be known only by revelation.
The word "mystery," in the Bible, properly means a thing that
is "concealed," or that "has been concealed."
It does not mean that the thing was "incomprehensible,"
or even difficult to be understood.
The thing might be "plain" enough if revealed,
but it means simply that it "had not been before made known."
Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel and the
preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery kept
secret since the world began 26 but now made manifest, and by the
prophetic Scriptures made known to all nations. (NKJV)
For I do not desire, brethren, that you should be ignorant of this
mystery, lest you should be wise in your own opinion, that blindness in
part has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come
Ephesians 3:3, 4, 9
... how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery (as I
have briefly written already, by which, when you read,
you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ) ... and to
make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the
beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things
through Jesus Christ. (NKJV)
Do you not understand this parable? How then will you understand
all the parables?
The Parable of the Sower does not begin with "The kingdom of
heaven is like"
because it describes how the kingdom begins.
It begins with the preaching of the Word, the planting of the seed
in the hearts of people.
10 mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven
||The mystery of the Blindness of Israel, Bringing in
||(1 Cor. 15:52)
||The mystery of the Rapture
||The mystery of His Will
||The mystery of the Knowledge of Christ
||The mystery of Christ and the Church
||The mystery of Christ in You
||(11 Thess. 2:7)
||The mystery of Iniquity
||(1 Tim. 3:16)
||The mystery of Godliness
||The mystery of the Seven Stars
||The mystery of Babylon
The Scriptures themselves explain why the
Kingdom of Heaven is mysterious, or hidden from
understanding except through special revelation:
||For the kingdom of God is not met and
drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.
||Except a man be born again, he cannot
see the kingdom of God.
||We must through much tribulation enter
into the kingdom of God.
||Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of
|1 Corinthians 4:20
||For the kingdom of God is not in word,
but in power.
||When he, the Spirit of truth, is come,
he will guide you into all truth
|1 Corinthians 2:14
||But the natural man receives not the
things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him:
neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
Now the parable is this
||Any source that provides
the Word of God
||The Word of God
||Scattered - for all to
||Snatches the seed before it
can take root
||Trampled ground, not receptive
||- active rejection
||Quit when the going gets tough
||- active rejection
||Give in to worry and greed
||- passive rejection
||Seeks first the
Kingdom of God and His righteousness
We are responsible for the care and cultivation of our own field.
Some a hundredfold
From Adam Clark
(from Adam Clarke's Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1996 by
|"For the elucidation of this text, I beg leave to
introduce the following experiment.
In 1816 I sowed, for a third crop, a
field with oats, at Millbrook, in Lancashire; the grains weighed, on an
average, 3/4 of a grain each. One grain produced three stalks with three
ears: the largest had 68 grains in it, the second 26, and the third 25.
Whole number of grains 119
The root separately, after washing
|which together weighed
The stalks and remaining leaves
|and drying, weighed
Weight of the whole produce of one
|(for many had perished in the wet season)
This was 725 times and one quarter more than the original weight.
The power of grain to multiply itself, even in the same year,
is a subject as much of curiosity and astonishment.
It is significant that three-fourths of the hearts did not
produce fruit (they were never truly born again)
And the hearts that were fruitful did not all produce "a hundredfold."
(from The Bible Exposition Commentary. Copyright (c) 1992 by SP
Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.)
Matthew 13:24-30; 36-43
|(24) Another parable He put
forth to them, saying: "The kingdom of
heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field;
(25) but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares
among the wheat and went his way. (26) But when the
grain had sprouted and produced a crop, then the tares also
appeared. (27) So the servants of the owner came and
said to him, 'Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? How
then does it have tares?' (28) He said to them, 'An
enemy has done this.' The servants said to him, 'Do you want us
then to go and gather them up?' (29) But he said,
'No, lest while you gather up the tares you also uproot the
wheat with them. (30) Let both grow together until
the harvest, and at the time of harvest I will say to the
reapers, "First gather together the tares and bind them in
bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my barn."'"
Then Jesus sent the multitude away and went into the house. And
His disciples came to Him, saying, "Explain to us the parable of
the tares of the field."
(37) He answered and said to them: "He who sows the good seed is
the Son of Man. (38) The field is the world, the good seeds are the
sons of the kingdom, but the tares are the sons of the wicked
one. (39) The enemy who sowed them is the devil, the harvest is the
end of the age, and the reapers are the angels. (40) Therefore as
the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so it will be at
the end of this age. (41) The Son of Man will send out His angels,
and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend,
and those who practice lawlessness, (42) and will cast them into
the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of
teeth. (43) Then the righteous will shine forth as the sun in the
kingdom of their Father. He who has ears to hear, let him hear!
The Kingdom of Heaven is like
|A man sowing good seed
||The Son of God
|The Good Seed
||Sons of the Kingdom
||Faithful children of God
|The enemy sowed tares
|The Bad Seed
||Sons of Satan
||End of the age
Tares are the annual bearded darnel or rye grass that flourishes in wheat
|It is difficult to tell it from wheat or rye until
it heads. (It is known by it's fruit)
|After harvest the wheat is fanned, then put
through a sieve.
|The smaller darnel seeds left after fanning pass
through the sieve leaving the wheat behind.
|The darnel is host to an ergot-like smut fungus
that infects the seeds.
|The fungus is a serious poison if eaten by animals
Roberts states that the counterpart of this nocturnal villainy may be
found in India.
A man wishing to do his enemy an injury watches for the
time when he shall have finished plowing his field, and in the night he
goes into the field and scatters pandinellu, or picpaddy.
of rapid growth springs up before the good seed, and scatters itself before the other can be reaped, so that the poor owner of the field will
be some years before he can rid the soil of the troublesome weed.
An enemy has done it
From this parable we find, concerning our Archenemy, Satan:
||This enemy is Vigilant
||While men sleep he watches
||This enemy is Hidden
||After having sown his seed, he disappears
||This enemy is Deceitful
||His seed appears as the wheat until it bears its
The Two Seeds
||Seed of the woman
||Seed of the serpent
|This is the first mention of the two seeds in
God said that the woman would have a seed (Christ) (Gal 3:16;
4:4), and the serpent (Satan) would have a seed.
It also states that there would be constant enmity between the
serpent's seed and the woman's seed.
||Cain and Abel
|When Cain murdered Abel he started this enmity
between the two seeds.
1 John 3:12 states that Cain was "of that wicked one"
- a child of the devil!
This conflict continues throughout the entire Old Testament.
||The Pharisees and Jesus
|Satan's seed ("children of the devil")
opposed John the Baptist (3:7) and did nothing when he was
killed by Herod.
They opposed Christ and asked to have Him crucified.
At the cross, Satan bruised Christ's heel but Christ
bruised Satan's head and defeated him forever.
||The Apostle Paul and the
|Satan's seed opposed Paul when he first started his missionary work
and all through his life.
Satan opposed Paul (as he does the church today) with
||a false gospel
|(2 Cor 11:13-26)
|(2 Cor 11:26)
end, all satanic forces will be defeated by the Son of God.
|(2 Thess 2)
||The final result
|This enmity between the two seeds will finally culminate in a false Christ
The "son of perdition" will oppose the Son of God.
"mystery of lawlessness" will oppose the mystery of godliness.
religious system (Rev 17) will fight the bride (the true church).
there will be a satanic trinity - the devil, the beast, the false prophet
(Rev 19:20; 20:1-3) - to oppose the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
(from The Bible Exposition Commentary. Copyright (c) 1992 by SP
Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.)
The Scriptures have this to say on the subject:
Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the
Wiles of the devil. (NKJV)
2 Corinthians 2:8, 11
Therefore I urge you to reaffirm your love to him ... lest Satan should
take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices.
2 Thessalonians 2:9-12
The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with
all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception
among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the
truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them
strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be
condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in
James 4:7, 8
Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. (NKJV)
"Be angry, and do not sin": do not let the sun go down on your
wrath, nor give place to the devil. (NKJV)
1 Peter 5:8-11
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks
about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist
him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings
are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But may the God of
all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus,
after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish,
strengthen, and settle you. To Him be the glory and the dominion
forever and ever. Amen. (NKJV)
Matthew 13:31, 32
parable He put forth to them, saying:
kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and
sowed in his field, (32) which indeed is the least
of all the seeds; but when it is grown it is greater than the
herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and
nest in its branches."
Mark 4:31, 32
It is like a mustard seed which,
when it is sown on the ground, is smaller than all the seeds on
earth; (32) but when it is sown, it grows up and
becomes greater than all herbs, and shoots out large branches,
so that the birds of the air may nest under its shade."
Luke 13:18, 19
|(18) Then He
said, "What is the kingdom of God like?
And to what shall I compare it?
(19) It is like a mustard seed,
which a man took and put in his garden; and it grew and became a
large tree, and the birds of the air nested in its branches."
The Kingdom of Heaven is like
|A grain of mustard seed
|When it is planted
||Is the smallest of seeds
|When it is grown
||Is greater than all herbs
Mark gives the most detailed account of this parable:
||To what can we compare the kingdom of
||It is like a grain of mustard seed.
||When it is sown in the earth, it is
smallest in size) than all the seeds that
be are the earth:
||But when it is sown, it grows up,
and becometh greater (meizon
larger in size) than all herbs (lachanon edible garden herb)
||And shoots out great branches
||So that (hoste insomuch as a result, not as a reason) the fowls of the air may lodge
under the shadow of it. (Luke 13:19 lodge in the branches of it)
"I have seen," says Dr. Thomson, "this plant on the rich plain of Akkar
as tall as the horse and his rider. It has occurred to me on former visits
that the mustard-tree of the parable probably grew at this spot, or
possibly at Tabiga, near Capernaum, for the water in both is somewhat
similar, and so are the vegetable productions. To furnish an adequate
basis for the proverb, it is necessary to suppose that a variety of it was
cultivated in the time of our Savior, which grew to an enormous size, and
shot forth large branches, so that the fowls of the air could lodge in the
branches of it. It may have been perennial, and have grown to a
considerable tree; and there are traditions in the country of such so
large that a man could climb into them; and after having seen "red pepper"
bushes grow on year after year, into tall shrubs, and the "castor-bean" line the brooks about Damascus like the willows and the poplars, I can
readily credit the existence of mustard-trees large enough to meet all the
demands of our Lord's parable." - "The Land and the Book," vol. ii. p.
(from Barnes' Notes, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1997 by Biblesoft)
Birds nested in its branches
In this parable series, birds are agents of evil (Matt
13:4,19), as they are frequently in Scripture (Jeremiah 5:26-27; Rev
18:2). History confirms the fact that from the smallest beginning,
the church made astounding growth through the proclamation of
Christ's message. Yet such unusual growth has provided roosting
places for those who are enemies of God, who seek the shade and
fruit of the tree for their own interests (even nations like to be
(from The Wycliffe Bible Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright (c)
1962 by Moody Press)
Luke 13:19 - Amplified Bible
It is like a grain of mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his
own garden; and it grew and became a tree, and the wild birds found
shelter and roosted and nested in its branches.
parable He spoke to them:
kingdom of heaven is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in
three measures of meal till it was all leavened."
again He said, "To what shall I liken the
kingdom of God?
It is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures
of meal till it was all leavened."
The Kingdom of Heaven is like
|Hidden in three
measures of meal
|Till it was all leavened - filled with leaven
The usual leaven among the Jews consisted of dough in a high state of
fermentation, though the lees of wine were sometimes employed.
The property of leaven is to change, or assimilate to its own nature, the
meal or dough with which it is mixed.
It is as our modern yeast which is
a living organism, and indicates an inward growth.
A Woman Hid 3 Measures of Meal
(1) Then the LORD appeared to him by the terebinth
trees of Mamre, as he was sitting in the tent door in the heat
of the day. (2) So he lifted his eyes and looked, and behold,
three men were standing by him; and when he saw them, he ran from the tent
door to meet them, and bowed himself to the ground, (3) and
said, "My Lord, if I have now found favor in Your sight, do not pass on by
Your servant. (4) Please let a little water be brought, and
wash your feet, and rest yourselves under the tree. (5) And I
will bring a morsel of bread, that you may refresh your hearts. After that
you may pass by, inasmuch as you have come to your servant."
They said, "Do as you have said."
(7) And Abraham ran to the herd, took a tender and good calf, gave it
to a young man, and he hastened to prepare it.8 So he took butter and milk
and the calf which he had prepared, and set it before them; and he stood
by them under the tree as they ate. (NKJV)
|(6) So Abraham hurried into the tent to
Sarah and said,
"Quickly, make ready three measures of fine meal; knead
it and make cakes."
Leaven in the Old Testament is generally symbolic of evil:
||Removed from the Jewish homes during Passover
||... seven days you shall eat
unleavened bread. On the first day you shall remove leaven
from your houses. For whoever eats leavened bread from the
first day until the seventh day, that person shall be cut off
from Israel. (NKJV)
||Unleavened bread shall be eaten
seven days. And no leavened bread shall be seen among you, nor
shall leaven be seen among you in all your quarters. (NKJV)
||Excluded from the sacrifices
||You shall not offer the blood of
My sacrifice with leaven, nor shall the sacrifice of the
Feast of the Passover be left until morning.**
||** The exception was loaves used at the Feast of
In the New Testament it refers to:
||Evil doctrine of the Pharisees, Sadducees, and Herod
||Now when His disciples had come
to the other side, they had forgotten to take bread.6 Then
Jesus said to them, "Take heed and beware of the leaven of the
Pharisees and the Sadducees." (NKJV)
||Then He charged them, saying,
"Take heed, beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the
leaven of Herod." (NKJV)
||Regards leaven as evil
|1 Cor 5:6-7
||Your glorying is not good. Do you
not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump?
Therefore purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new
lump, since you truly are unleavened.
||You ran well. Who hindered you
from obeying the truth? This persuasion does not come
from Him who calls you. A little leaven leavens the
whole lump. I have confidence in you, in the Lord, that you
will have no other mind; but he who troubles you shall bear
his judgment, whoever he is. (NKJV)
The mustard seed illustrates the false outward expansion of the
The leaven illustrates the inward development of false doctrine and
(44) Again, the kingdom of heaven is
like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and
for joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that
The Kingdom of Heaven is like
|Hidden in a field
|A man found the treasure and hid it
|Joyfully sells all he has and buys the field
Hidden in a field
The possession of wealth often became a source of great
perplexity because of its insecurity.
Every man being his own banker,
ingenuity was taxed to devise some plan of concealment, or to find some
place where money, jewels, and other valuables may remain free from
molestation or suspicion.
Sometimes these treasures are hidden in secret closets in the house, or in
vaults under the house; sometimes buried in the field, in a spot unknown
to all save the owner. It not so infrequently happened that the owner
went away and died before the time of his intended return, his secret
dying with him.
Times of war and pestilence carried off great numbers, who left treasures
concealed, no one knows where. There are, no doubt, deposits of immense
value thus buried.
A man who discovers the place where treasure is hid keeps the discovery to
himself, buys the field, and the treasure is then his own.
|How did he sell all he had?
|Why did he sell all he had?
|Why did he want to buy the field?
... Christ Jesus ... made Himself of no reputation, taking the form
of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found
in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to
the point of death, even the death of the cross. (NKJV)
... the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.
Matthew 13:45, 46
|.(45) Again, the
kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls,
(46) who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went
and sold all that he had and bought it.
The Kingdom of Heaven is like
|Seeking beautiful pearls
|Found a pearl of great price
|Sold all he had and bought the pearl
|What was the merchant doing?
|Looking for beautiful pearls
|What did he do when he found it?
|What did he do when he sold all?
In the parable of the hidden treasure, the Kingdom is like the Treasure
that was hidden
In the parable of the pearl, the Kingdom is like the Merchant that was
In both, the man (Jesus, the Son of Man) gave up all that he
had to purchase that which was most valuable to him.
For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was
1 Corinthians 6:20
For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body
and in your spirit, which are God's. (NKJV)
|(47) Again, the kingdom of
heaven is like a dragnet that was cast into the sea and gathered
some of every kind, (48) which, when it was full, they
drew to shore; and they sat down and gathered the good into
vessels, but threw the bad away. (49) So it will be at
the end of the age. The angels will come forth, separate the
wicked from among the just, (50) and cast them into
the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth.
(51) Jesus said to them, "Have you understood all these
They said to Him, "Yes, Lord."
The Kingdom of Heaven is like
|A net cast into the sea
|Gathered some of every kind
|When full, it was brought to shore
|The good were gathered into vessels
|The bad was thrown away
The word often rendered net signifies a large drag-net that draws
everything after it, suffering nothing to escape, as distinguished from a
casting-net in Mark 1:16.
Have you understood all these things?
The Amplified translates this:
|Have you understood all these things [parables]
The word for all is panta which is literally
The Kingdom of Heaven is like
||Sows Good Seed
||Enemy plants Bad Seed
||Both Grow Together
|A Grain of Mustard Seed
||Planted in the Ground
||Grows to Great Size
||Birds Seek its Shade
||Hidden in the Meal
||Grows inside the Leaven
||Permeates the Dough
||Hidden the Field
||Found by a Man
||Purchased by the Man
||Searching for Pearls
||Found Priceless Pearl
||Purchases the Pearl
||Cast into the Sea
||Gathers All Kinds
||Good Kept, Bad Tossed
Here we have the wonderful and fearsome story of the Gospel of Jesus Christ:
Good & Bad Seed
|Both the good and bad are left to grow
together until the harvest (end of the world) at which time the bad
seed (unbelievers, unfaithful, hypocrites) is tossed into the
furnace, and the good seed (faithful believers) are gathered to the
Father and shine as the sun.
Matthew 13:31, 32
The Mustard Seed
|The seed was small and insignificant,
but after it was planted and grew, it became largest of all herbs
and wild birds nested in its branches (Luke 13:19). Birds
having already been identified by Jesus as evil ones (Matthew 13:4 &
19) receive the benefits of , and infest, the church.
|The leaven (evil, sin) is in the meal,
and permeates the dough. When sin entered through the first
man, Adam, every human from that time on was born is sin.
Rom 5:12 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the
world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men,
because all sinned. (NKJV)
The Hidden Treasure
|The treasure had been hidden in the
Col 2:13 And you, being dead in your trespasses and the
uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with
This death is the death of sin.
When he found the treasure, he hid it again.
Col 3:3 For you died, and your life is hidden with
Christ in God. (NKJV)
This is the death to sin.
And purchased us with all he had - with his very life blood.
Matthew 13:45, 46
|The merchant was seeking beautiful
Luke 19:10 For the Son of Man has come to seek and to
save that which was lost. (NKJV)
He found a pearl that was more valuable to him than all he had.
Again, he purchased us with all he had - with his very life blood.
|It was cast into the sea, and drew in
both good and bad.
When it was brought to shore, at the end of the world (age) the
wicked were tossed into the fire.
2 Thess 2:7-11
(7) For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He
who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way. (8)
And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with
the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming.
(9) The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of
Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, (10) and with
all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not
receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
(16) For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world
that He [even] gave up His only begotten ( unique) Son, so that whoever
believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not
perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life.
(17) For God did not send the Son into the world in order to judge
(to reject, to condemn, to pass sentence on) the world, but that
the world might find salvation and be made safe and sound through Him.
(18) He who believes in Him [who clings to, trusts in,
relies on Him] is not judged [he who trusts in Him never comes up
for judgment; for him there is no rejection, no condemnation--he
incurs no damnation]; but he who does not believe (cleave to,
rely on, trust in Him) is judged already [he has already been
convicted and has already received his sentence] because he has not
believed in and trusted in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
[He is condemned for refusing to let his trust rest in Christ's name.]
He that hath an ear - let him hear
||This warning is found 16 times in the New
For more discussion on the parables of Jesus, see
in Topical Studies.