A parable is an earthly story with a heavenly meaning, and there are about 35 of Jesus’ parables recorded in the Synoptic Gospels. In the early part of His ministry, Jesus had not used parables. Suddenly, He begins telling parables exclusively, much to the surprise of His disciples, who asked Him, “Why do you speak to the people in parables?” (Matthew 13:10). Jesus explained that His use of parables had a double purpose: to reveal the truth to those who wanted to know it and to conceal the truth from those who were indifferent.
Jesus made sure His disciples understood the meaning of the parables: “When he was alone with his own disciples, he explained everything” (Mark 4:34b). After telling some of His parables, Jesus said, “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear” (Mark 4:9, 23). This was a call to listen to the parables, not just as one would listen to an ordinary story but as one who is seeking the truth of God.
Click on the following hyperlinks to retrieve their corresponding parable.