• Hidden in Plain Sight (Matthew 13.10-17)

    Matthew 13 is a compilation of wonderful parables. Before we dive into them in the coming weeks, I want to jump ahead to Jesus' explanation for His use of parables.

    What is a Parable?

    Literally, it means to “throw at” -- basically throwing to seemingly disconnected ideas together.

    A parable takes something familiar and compares it to something unfamiliar.

    It is the original “mashup!”

    Why Parables?

    Why not simply explain everything literally and be done with it? Here are just a few potential reasons ...

    Legal—in a literal sense, they aren’t specific enough to get Jesus in immediate trouble. Remember, the Pharisees are now out to get him.

    Economical—Parables are the gobstoppers of education. A story can unfold a thousand times and still make a new connection. Just a little goes a very long way!

    Memorable—It takes great attention to memorize even a simple speech. But a simple story lasts for a very long time.

    Finally, Jesus’ Reason: To Hide Truth...from those who don’t want to hear it.

    Huh? This seems like a poor teaching strategy!

    But the truth is, like any good teacher, God does not spoon-feed us. He brings us into the process of discipleship by engaging our imaginations. He calls us to work out our faith so that we might cherish it more.

    The truth is, we don't appreciate things that are given to us as much as the things we've earned. Note the law of atrophy (spiritually) at work in verse 12... "Use it or lose it." You will not get anything out of it if you bring nothing to Him. It requires loaves and fish to feed a multitude. It requires a mustard seed to move a mountain.

    Parables either command our attention or they are ignored and cast aside.

    “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling” (Phil 2.12)

    Are We Blind and Deaf?

    It begs the question -- are we ready to receive what God wants to teach us? Or do we pass Him like a ship in the night? This is really between you and the Lord, but I would like to point out some potential stumbling blocks to hearing and seeing Him. 

    Constant noise distracts our hearing. What other sounds dominate your hearing? The television? The radio? The static of everyday life?  Cut through the clutter and you will hear Him speaking softly and tenderly. He will not shout over the noise you invite in to overshadow him.

    Plugged ears make hearing impossible. Has He spoken and you have ignored it because it wasn't what you wanted to hear?

    A lens cap obscures the subject. Have you ever taken the perfect picture only to realize later you had the lens cover on? What lens cap is obscuring Christ in your life? Is it fear of "them"? Is it your pride? We all cover the lens from time to time. Be careful! You may miss Him right in front of you.   

    Personal darkness underexposes our image. It is also hard to see when there is darkness in the soul. This darkness can be regret over past sins, or a willful disobedience in the here and now. Don't let your personal darkeners obscure His light. Invite Him in, and whatever darkness haunts you will be driven away by the marvelous light of His forgiveness and mercy.

    Constant motion blurs our vision. Ah, this is our grand problem today! "I would like to listen to you Jesus, but I simply haven't got the time." Isn't that illogical? If we were to think about it, we have only so much time in any given day to accomplish everything set before us. Some items on our agenda are of no consequence. Some of are little consequence. Others carry some weight, and therefore must be given priority. However, there is nothing of more lasting significance on your agenda than your relationship with God. Yet somehow, the dishes, Facebook, the job, even the trash seem to take higher priority than Christ. You cannot love in a hurry. You cannot see him if you are moving all the time. I am not saying you should neglect the items on your agenda, I am simply encouraging you to put the more important items into the jar first. You won't have room for them if you add all of the inconsequential things first.

    “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”  (Psalm 46.10)

    May we go from here no longer blind and deaf, but with eyes wide open, ears unstopped, so that we may behold His glory and hear His words with perfect clarity.

    Blog Category: 

    Share this post

    Leave a comment

    Plain text

    • No HTML tags allowed.
    • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
    • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

    About Us

    This blog is written by leaders of SVCC. The people who write here are not perfect or "holier than thou."  They just strive to seek after God with all their hearts.

    We hope that God will speak to you as you read the words He's placed here through the hearts and minds of people who follow after Him.

    Restoration May trajectory Happiness outsiders The Cost of Discipleship Purity Social Justice Obedience Friendship Judgment Light Authority Richonomics Busy Poverty Desire Adultery Retaliation Parenting through Christ Love Never Fails Law Predestination Tired Conflict demons Mary Magdalene Money Kindness Son of Man The Dukes of Hazzard Purpose Truth Mary wholehearted Healing Violence Christmas Eve Salvation victim Poser Faith or Fear Hebrew Names of God Dependence Spiritual Blindness God's Word Messages Rest in the Lord Evangelicalism Humility letting go Desperado Holiness Backbiting Shame Spirit Walkers Judgement Jim Eliot Family Exhausted Vision denial Cost of Discipleship Daily Bible Reading Lust God is in control Honor exposure Liar Guests Reward Father's Business Holy Spirit Morality Cross Betrayal Community Patient Apologetics Security Nobles Repentance Bushel Lost Cause Pooronomics Grace Temptations Sexism Interpretation Fasting Seventy Sevens Worship Scripture Memory Murder Satan Palm Sunday Emptiness unpardonable sin Wonders Damascus Road Angels fear Trials Proverbs Tithes Holy Love Injustice Newbigen Weary Gossip Habits Love Eye Mission Work Charity Serving God Racism Sin Presence of God Stubborn Greed Victory Sacrifice Verdict Savior without Lord Daily Bible Readings Blessings Compassion Lies Dragon Genealogy Foundation judging others Mercy Basket Fruit fo the Spirit Spiritual Warfare Restore unto me the joy Judas Trek & Journey Free Samples Moving Mountains Herod Baptism Fire Watch Angel Naughty Childlike living right Not a Fan Free Will Acceptance Pornography Gender Family of God Worry Depression Neutrality Provision Self Worth Politics Jairus Traffic Son of God Goodness Ezekiel Walk on Water Soil Doubt joyous thoughts Alabaster Jar Service Narrow Way Rest Part 1 suffering Signs Atonement Revelation Understanding God's Timing Matthew Honesty Disappointment OK John the Baptist Unclean Lunatic Joy Take up your cross Lamp Empty Tomb Speaking Daniel Men Danger Gehenna Hypocrisy Apocalypse control Storms Gifts Patience Evangelism Messiah Faith Guilty By Reason of Humanity Oozing Spirituality Temptation Discipleship tribulation Disciple Fails Knowing God Wealth trouble Miracles Taste and See Christ Christology Approval Sanctification Ready Perseverance Apology Sheperds Fruit of the Spirit Assumptions Outcast Bread Physical Need Lord Giving Education Ancestry True Riches Parables End Times Trek and Journey Wise Men Christmas Dragon unforgivable sin Spiritual Need Breath Prayer Easter Original Sin Simple Complexity God the Father Applause Prayer Bible Study Theophany relationship with God Nice Topheth Spiritual Support Prophecy Hospitality Gentiles Regeneration Antichrist Second Coming Heart Armor Advent Expectations Family Tree Treasure victor stress Gentleness Santa Hell Holy Week Witness Inconvenience Lent Envy Great Commission Christmas Anxiety Fornication theodicy Persecution Action Materialism Clothing Serving tempest Forgiveness wisdom aim Word of God Women's Ministry Blog Questions Confession Jerusalem Ash Wednesday Be Prepared