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The Messages of Jesus are Understood by the Spiritual Interpretation of His Parables

Today we look at the parables of Jesus for insight into how we can better understand the messages He has provided us in the Gospels. This understanding is critical in answering a number of questions I have received from readers seeking validation of some of the messages we have delivered.

Questions About the Tabernacle and the Claims of Jesus

For example, a number of readers have asked for authoritative scriptural support that Jesus is claiming to be the fulfillment of the Tabernacle when He stated, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (John 14: 6.) They have also asked me to provide scriptural verification that the entryways into the Tabernacle are called the Way, the Truth and the Life.

I plan to present answers by way of a number of postings. The strategy is to build a foundation of principles, in a line upon line manner, that lead the reader to the verification that they desire.

Jesus and Parables

The disciples often had difficulty understanding Jesus, just as many of us do today. Often, the reason for this is because Jesus came to deliver spiritual messages about the Father and the Kingdom of Heaven, while we on the other hand, are prone to relate everything to the physical world around us.

Jesus And The Multitude

Jesus And The Multitude

As a result, Jesus would often speak to us by way of parables that paint His spiritual messages in the colors of our real world experiences. The Gospels contains numerous examples of the parables of Jesus. However, it should be noted that parables did not always help in our understanding. In at least one example, Jesus had to explain a parable to His disciples.

Here is a section of  Matthew’s Gospel about Jesus and His parables:

Matthew 13

New King James Version (NKJV)

The Parable of the Sower

1 On the same day Jesus went out of the house and sat by the sea. 2 And great multitudes were gathered together to Him, so that He got into a boat and sat; and the whole multitude stood on the shore.

3 Then He spoke many things to them in parables, saying: “Behold, 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!”

The Disciples are Sent out

The Disciples are Sent out

The Purpose of Parables

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[a] heal them.’[b] 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.

The Parable of the Sower Explained

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.”

The Parable of the Wheat and the Tares

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.”’”

The Parable of the Mustard Seed

31 Another parable He put forth to them, saying: “The 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.”

The Parable of the Leaven

33 Another parable He spoke to them: “The kingdom of heaven is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures[c] of meal till it was all leavened.”

Prophecy and the Parables

34 All these things Jesus spoke to the multitude in parables; and without a parable He did not speak to them, 35 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.”[d]

The Parable of the Tares Explained

36 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!

This scripture is very revealing in that it presents a number of the parables of Jesus, and then goes on and gives us the translation of some of them so that we can see how His parables work. It shows how He presents a seemingly real life story like the parable of the Tares, and uses it to deliver His spiritual message. In this example He uses the parable to describe the reality of the spiritual forces in our lives and spiritual destination that all mankind is moving toward. The parable presents a case for the purpose of Jesus coming to Earth, which is to sow the good seeds of the Father. It substantiates the reality of the devil and his evil deeds, the work of the angels at the time of the harvest, and most importantly, it presents the fire in hell as the destination for all who follow the works of the devil, and the glory of life forever in the kingdom of heaven with the Father who follow Jesus in the pathways of righteousness.

So, the foundational principle of the posting is that Jesus delivered His spiritual messages via parables. This is true because the scripture states: 34 All these things Jesus spoke to the multitude in parables; and without a parable He did not speak to them.

The founding principle is that these messages should not be taken literally, but rather viewed as spiritual messages. This principle is a key foundation to understanding Jesus, and properly understanding His message: “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life, no one comes to the Father but through Me.”

The things that are revealed in the parables of Jesus are critical to understanding things that have been mysteries to all mankind. This is true because the scripture states: 35 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.”[d]

All of this insight into parables and the words of Jesus is critical in helping us understand what Jesus was saying when He stated:, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (John 14:6.) This in turn will lead to an understanding of why the entryways of the Tabernacle are called the Way, the Truth and the Life.

In our next posting we will provide additional scriptural support that Jesus is the fulfillment of the Tabernacle.  After this, we will take an in-depth look at the Way, the Truth and the Life in subsequent postings. See you all next time. God bless you all.

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