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The Mysteries of the Parables

On our last program we finished examining seven parables recorded in Matthew 13.

 

There are seven parables in the heart of the Gospel according to Matthew. Jesus presents the parables and, it seems, that the entire grand story of redemption and the world itself can be found in them! It is amazing how Jesus presents the nature of the Kingdom of Heaven in these parables. You can watch the previous episode here; or you can request a chart that I believe will help you to understand the mysteries of all seven parables here.

 

But I would like to tell you another parable that demonstrates the message of the Matthew 13 parables in a nutshell.

 

I once read the story about a caterpillar named Stripe. He became bored with just crawling around in a field. One day, when he was looking off into the distance, he saw a pillar of caterpillars climbing into the sky.

 

He thought, "Maybe that's what caterpillars are supposed to do - climb caterpillar pillars." He got on the caterpillar pillar and started to climb up. The only way to do that was to step on other caterpillars' heads, so he kept pushing his way up.

 

On his way up, he stepped on the head of a little yellow caterpillar that was very pretty. He said to her, "Maybe it would be better not to climb this caterpillar pillar, but to go back to the field and just live happily together." The two of them worked their way down the caterpillar pillar into the field. After a while, Stripe said, "I'm going to go back up the caterpillar pillar and see what's up there." She said, I can't go back up that," so Stripe left her.

 

Lonely, the pretty yellow caterpillar was crawling around in a field when she saw a caterpillar spinning a cocoon. She asked, "Why are you doing that?" The caterpillar said, "Because I'm going to die." She said, "Why do you want to die?" "Because if I die, I will be born again as a butterfly," he replied.

 

She thought about that for a long time. Finally, she decided she'd be willing to die and be born as a butterfly. She realized that if she did that, she wouldn't have to climb the caterpillar pillar; she could fly over the top and look down to see what was up there. She spun a cocoon and died, and became born as a butterfly.

 

She flew over to the caterpillar pillar and found Stripe, very close to the top of the pillar. But a caterpillar underneath him pushed him off, making him fall of the pillar. But before Stripe could hit the ground, she rescued him. Later on, Stripe spun a cocoon and became a butterfly too.

 

What does that story say? It says that if you're willing to spiritually die, you can be born again as a Christian. That is the message of the parables. If you accept what Jesus did for you - if you accept His sacrifice and listen to Him - you are a part of His kingdom.

 

The Kingdom is precious, hidden, personally appropriated, joyous, and entered from different circumstances. But always the price is to abandon one's self to receive the supreme sovereignty of Jesus Christ who left all that He had to save you!

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