Parables And Power

Parables And Power

The Purpose of the Parables

And when he was alone, those around him with the twelve asked him about the parables. And he said to them, “To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of God, but for those outside everything is in parables, so that

    “‘they may indeed see but not perceive,
        and may indeed hear but not understand,
    lest they should turn and be forgiven.’”

    And he said to them, “Do you not understand this parable? How then will you understand all the parables? The sower sows the word. And these are the ones along the path, where the word is sown: when they hear, Satan immediately comes and takes away the word that is sown in them. And these are the ones sown on rocky ground: the ones who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy. And they have no root in themselves, but endure for a while; then, when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately they fall away. And others are the ones sown among thorns. They are those who hear the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. But those that were sown on the good soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it and bear fruit, thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.”

A Lamp Under a Basket

And he said to them, “Is a lamp brought in to be put under a basket, or under a bed, and not on a stand? For nothing is hidden except to be made manifest; nor is anything secret except to come to light. If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.” And he said to them, “Pay attention to what you hear: with the measure you use, it will be measured to you, and still more will be added to you. For to the one who has, more will be given, and from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.”

The Parable of the Seed Growing

And he said, “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground. He sleeps and rises night and day, and the seed sprouts and grows; he knows not how. The earth produces by itself, first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. But when the grain is ripe, at once he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.”

The Parable of the Mustard Seed

And he said, “With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable shall we use for it? It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when sown on the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth, yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes larger than all the garden plants and puts out large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.”

With many such parables he spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it. He did not speak to them without a parable, but privately to his own disciples he explained everything.

Jesus Calms a Storm

On that day, when evening had come, he said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.” And leaving the crowd, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was. And other boats were with him. And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke him and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. He said to them, “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?” And they were filled with great fear and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?”

The Secret Of The Kingdom

On that day, not all could understand Him. The Twelve inquired of Jesus about the significance of these parables. Faced with these questions in verse 10, Jesus boldly offered one of His “hard sayings”: “The secret of the kingdom of God has been given to you; yet  on the outside, it is expressed through parables so they will remain ever seeing and never perceiving, ever hearing and never understanding—otherwise they may turn around and be forgiven.” (vv 11-12). God's word and seeds are scattered throughout people’s hearts—some being hardened, shallow, or overcrowded while others embrace openness. But no matter what one may encounter along their journey, if they stay steadfast in faith then an unprecedented abundance in growth will follow. Reminiscently, Isaiah too faced this disappointment when he proclaimed God’s words but people just weren't prepared to accept them (Isaiah 6:9–10). It's essential to understand that those who receive God’s word with a good heart don't deserve credit for their proper reception because no one can be truly righteous in Adam (Rom 3:12). If someone arrives at Christ, they must recognize that only by experiencing God's grace first could such an occurrence take place (John 6:44).

Lamp Light

The parable of the lamp makes clear that when God enlightens us—a metaphor for understanding His message—transformation will be evident. The parable of the growing seed teaches us that we cannot explain God's work on our souls and how His kingdom grows within us. This story of sanctification offers essential insights about spiritual growth, reminding us to remain anchored in faith as God works in our lives.


Jesus's parable of the mustard seed reminds us that his word will reach far and wide, even when faced with opposition. His disciples may be asking themselves if his ministry will spread further beyond Galilee given all the resistance it draws. But as Jesus tells them in this parable, no matter how small or insignificant something might seem to begin with, its potential is immense—just like a tiny seed from which an enormous tree grows.

The Storm

As Jesus and his disciples sailed across the Lake of Galilee, a fierce storm violently descended upon them. Amidst their frantic worry for survival, however, Jesus remained sound asleep in the stern until He was eventually awakened by His terrified companions. Miraculously, with one single command from Him wind and sea were immediately silenced! In awe, the disciples were left dumbfounded after witnessing Jesus's unfathomable power to silence a fierce storm. Who was this man that could seemingly command nature itself? As mentioned in Psalm 107:29, it is God who "stills the storms to a whisper," and never before had they seen such power. Unquestionably, they had encountered something divine.





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