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Parables of Jesus

A parable is an illustration using either a story, something seen, or something known to teach a lesson.  Illustrations stay with us longer and so Jesus used illustrations to teach the people about God the Father, about the Kingdom of Heaven and even to teach us something about Himself.  Much more can be learned from these parables than can be written here, but you should find this web site contains many links to information that can help you dig deeper into these parables and their meanings.

Jesus wanted us to know what God was really like.  He wanted us to know what kind of character God has.  By studying these parables we can come to know our Creator better and come to love Him more.  (To understand this purpose of Jesus better read Teaching in Parables.)

In the days when Jesus was on the earth, there were some who really wanted to know the truths that He taught.  These people understood what Jesus was saying.  There were others that were not interested in knowing truth, but were looking for something that they could use against Him.  These spies did not understand what was being said and so Jesus was also protecting Himself until the time of His death was close.  In fact, many of the parables that Jesus spoke were given in the last 6 months before He died on the cross.  (See the Ministry of Jesus Timeline.)



13:10 And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables?
13:11 He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.
13:12 For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.
13:13 Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.
13:14 And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive:


Here is a list of parables Jesus used while trying to teach us about our Father:

Parable Matthew Mark Luke John
Alert servants      Mark 13:33-37    
Barren fig tree       Luke 13:6-9  
Bread of life         John 6:31-38
Budding fig tree   Matthew 24:32-35 Mark 13:28-32 Luke 21:29-33  
Children in market   Matthew 11:16-19   Luke 7:31-35  
Christian light    Matthew 5:14-16 Mark 4:21-23 Luke 8:16-18  
Dinner guests        Luke 14:15-24  
Divided kingdom    Matthew 12:24-30 Mark 3:22-27 Luke 11:14-23  
Feast invitations        Luke 14:12-14  
Friend at midnight       Luke 11:5-13  
Good Samaritan        Luke 10:25-37  
Good shepherd          John 10:1-18
Great physician    Matthew 9:10-13 Mark 2:15-17 Luke 5:29-32  
Groom's attendants    Matthew 9:14-15 Mark 2:18-20 Luke 5:33-35  
Growing seed      Mark 4:26-29    
Hidden treasure    Matthew 13:44      
Householder     Matthew 13:52      
Humbled guest        Luke 14:7-11  
King's war plans       Luke 14:31-33  
Laborers in vineyard   Matthew 20:1-16      
Landowner     Matthew 21:33-46 Mark 12:1-12 Luke 20:9-18  
Leaven     Matthew 13:33   Luke 13:20-21  
Lost coin        Luke 15:8-10  
Lost sheep        Luke 15:4-7  
Marriage feast    Matthew 22:1-14      
Mustard seed    Matthew 13:31-32 Mark 4:30-32 Luke 13:18-19  
Net of fish   Matthew 13:47-50      
New cloth    Matthew 9:16 Mark 2:21 Luke 5:36  
New wine    Matthew 9:17 Mark 2:22 Luke 5:37-39  
Pearl of great price  Matthew 13:45-46      
Pharisee and Tax Collector      Luke 18:9-14  
Prodigal son        Luke 15:11-32  
Rich man & Lazarus      Luke 16:19-31  
Rich fool        Luke 12:16-21  
Salt without taste  

Matthew 5:13

Mark 9:50 Luke 14:34-35  
Servant's duty        Luke 17:7-10  
Sheep and goats   Matthew 25:31-46      
Sign of Jonah   Matthew 12:38-42   Luke 11:29-32  
Tares in field (1st part) Matthew 13:24-30      
Tares in field (2nd part) Matthew 13:36-43      
Ten Minas        Luke 19:11-27  
Ten talents    Matthew 25:14-30      
Ten virgins    Matthew 25:1-13      
The Sower (1st part)  Matthew 13:3-9 Mark 4:3-20 Luke 8:4-15  
The Sower (2nd part)  Matthew 13:18-23      
Two debtors        Luke 7:41-43  
Two sons    Matthew 21:28-32      
Unclean spirit    Matthew 12:43-45   Luke 11:24-26  
Unjust judge        Luke 18:1-8  
Unjust steward        Luke 16:1-13  
Unmerciful servant    Matthew 18:21-35      
Unprepared builder        Luke 14:28-30  
Vine and branches         John 15:1-17
Watching servants        Luke 12:35-40  
Wise builder    Matthew 7:24-27   Luke 6:47-49  
Wise servant    Matthew 24:45-51      
Wise steward        Luke 12:42-48  


Dig Deeper:

Christ's Object Lessons


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