Tom Anderst
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Some of the most memorable stories in history came through Jesus' use of parables. Their impact can still be seen in everyday language. Most people know what is meant by a "Good Samaritan" or "Prodigal Son." But Jesus didn't teach with parables only to make them memorable. Most parables had some sort of surprise or twist that invited the listener to further reflect on what was said.

We continue our journey through Matthew 13 and Jesus' collection of parables found there. Matthew gives us a couple of reasons why Jesus' used parables in this chapter. The first one is found in verses 13-15. There Matthew quotes Isaiah and teaches that parables reveal a person's heart towards God. If someone hears a parable and responds with a deeper desire for God, that shows a heart love for God. But if someone is offended by or resistant to the parables, it can reveal a hard heart towards God.

The second reason is found in Matthew 13:34-35. "All these things Jesus said to the crowds in parables . . . This was to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet: 'I will open my mouth in parables; I will utter what has been hidden since the foundation of the world.'"

Matthew quotes Psalm 78:2. He cites another purpose for parables - to reveal things hidden since the foundation of the world. God's ways are not our ways or the world's ways. He does things in unexpected ways throughout history and in our lives today. A lot of His work is hidden or behind the scenes. But it doesn't mean that He's not doing anything.

He calls us to continue to walk faithfully with Him while He carries out His work and unfolds His plans for us. So I pray that as we continue this journey, God will continue to reveal Himself to you and give you His strength to persevere when it seems like He's not doing anything. His timing is perfect.

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