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July 21

Matthew 13, 34-35

Something to read

Jesus told the crowds all these things in parables; without a parable he told them nothing. This was to fulfil what had been spoken through the prophet: `I will open my mouth to speak in parables; I will proclaim what has been hidden from the foundation of the world.'
New Revised Standard Version

Something to think about

In the aftermath of the Haiti earthquake, a new Haitian TV soap was launched with a storyline based in the camps. It depicted issues that needed addressing, such as hygiene and nutrition. Thousands tuned in and lifestyles changed; if a lecture had been organised, few would have attended.

We are told in this text that Jesus used parables extensively in his teaching; these are everyday stories with spiritual truths hidden within the storyline. The listener has to tease out the hidden spiritual truth, and in so doing engages in the learning process.

It is evident from Jesus’ words in verses 13-16 that he accepts there will be those who do not engage, and therefore they will not see or understand the truth he is actually offering.

How often have you been frustrated by the poor response of those who you were sharing your message with?

Perhaps we need to learn the attitude that Christ had. As long as we have attempted to engage people with our message, we can do no more; except bring them to God in prayer. Through prayer much has been changed.

Have you ever noticed in the parable of the farmer sowing seed once he finishes sowing, his job is complete?

Something to do

Describe the difference between: ‘a lecturer’ and ‘a facilitator of learning’.

How does Jesus engage the lawyer in learning in the ‘Samaritan’ story (Luke 10, 25-37)?

Something to pray

Pray for teachers in our schools, colleges, and universities.
Pray for teachers in our churches and organisations, pastors, youth workers and speakers.

Pray for all those who are learning: wherever and whatever age.
Pray for our government and their education policies.

Today's contributor is the Rev Frazer Hawkes, a retired Methodist minister.


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