Did Jesus Really Mean That: The Parables

Did Jesus Really Mean That: The Parables

Did Jesus Really Mean That: The Parables

A Tale of Two Sinners

Someone said there are only two types of people in this world: sinners who admit it and sinners who don’t. Whatever our lives look like, the one great certainty is that we all ‘fall short of God’s glory’ and we all need God’s forgiveness. But do we realise that? It’s very possible to have a ‘holier-than-thou’ attitude like the Pharisee in the story, and miss the overflowing joy that comes when we appreciate how much we owe to Jesus for His mercy to us. Instead, let’s be like the ‘sinful’ woman. She knew how undeserving she was. But she had experienced the love, acceptance and forgiveness of Jesus and nothing could stifle her gratitude.

Ben Cumerford: The Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus

Jesus confronts money loving Pharisees with a message about an incredibly rich man and an incredibly poor man who was paid at the rich man’s doorstep. As it turned out, they both died and the poor man went to heaven but the rich man went to hell. The rich man was condemned because he ignored God’s Word as he did not care for the poor man. In the same way, if we want to be saved we need to live our lives like we take God’s Word seriously.

The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant

What limits do you impose on the way you forgive others? Is it easier for you to forgive some people, but not others? Are you able to forgive people for “minor” things, but not for “serious” things they do to you? Is there a maximum number of times you will forgive someone before you decide you can’t forgive them any longer? Peter had a question about the “limits” of forgiveness. He wanted to know how many times he needed to forgive a brother who had sinned against him (Matthew 18:21). Jesus answered by telling a story that challenges any limits we might place on the way we forgive others. Listen as we consider what God has done for us and what it looks like for us to “forgive as the Lord forgave you” (Colossians 3:13).

The Parable of the Talents

Think about the ways God has blessed you. With money? With time? With certain talents or opportunities? Now ask this question; “Are you a faithful steward of these things?” Jesus told a parable that shows why it is so important for us to be faithful stewards of what God has entrusted to us. He is our Master, and he wants us to make the most of the things he has given to us. One day each one of us will be called to account for how we have used what we have been given. Jesus wants us to be faithful stewards and to persevere in that until we hear the words of the Master, “Well done, good and faithful servant! (Matthew 25:21). Listen as we consider what it might look like to be faithful stewards in the world we live in today.

The Rich Fool

The phrase “greed is good” was made famous by the fictional character Gordon Gecko in the 1987 Hollywood movie Wall Street. Is greed really good? Certainly, most people would say that they disagree with this saying, yet with our actions, we say something different. Our lives are bound up in the endless pursuit for more. We want more stuff. Better stuff. More money. Greater security and comfort. Our economy, our homes and our lives are built on the notion that we need more in order to be satisfied and secure. But Jesus did not think that greed was good! Rather, he had a warning about greed; “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions” (Luke 12:15). “Greed is dangerous,” he said. He wanted people to know how seriously they should view the issue of greed. So he told them a parable, a story about a rich man who allows greed to consume him. And even though he feels that he has everything that he needs – life, security, comfort – the story shows that eventually he will be seen as he really is, a fool. Listen as we explore Jesus’ teaching and consider the danger of greed and what it would mean to live a life where instead of storing up things for ourselves, we focused on being “rich toward God” (Luke 12:21).

Desperate Prayer

Many Christians find praying a struggle, and the disciples of Jesus , so it seems, were in the same boat. But they weren’t quite prepared for the parable Jesus taught them in Luke 11 (and a related parable in Luke 18). When praying for specific needs we must pray with real conviction ……. boldly, stubbornly, even desperately! These are the kind of prayers God loves to hear and answer. Yet so often we give up too easily, and often this reflects a weak view of God and the gospel. So why do we have to keep on wrestling with God in our prayers? Listen in as Pastor Murray challenges us in this hard-hitting messag

The Vineyard Workers

Have you ever thought to yourself, “I’ve done a lot for God. What reward will he give me for all I’ve done?” Well one of Jesus’ disciples, Peter, asked a question a little like this. He said to Jesus, “We have left everything to follow you! What then will there be for us?” (Matthew 19:27 NIV). Beneath this question lay an assumption. That assumption was that in God’s kingdom, people are rewarded according to their merit, their effort and their ability. But Jesus wanted to break down that assumption. So he answered Peter’s question by telling him a story. A parable that demonstrated that the way things are in God’s kingdom, is totally different from how we expect them to be. So different that it is possible in God’s kingdom for “the first to be last and the last to be first.” How can this be!? Listen as we explore this parable and consider the implications of it’s message for us, servants in God’s kingdom.

The Good Samaritan

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could choose our neighbours? You could choose those who were pleasant and easy to get along with, but ignore those who weren’t! That’d be a perfect neighbourhood! There was an expert in the law who came to Jesus who wanted to live in a perfect neighbourhood. He knew that the Bible said he had to love his neighbour and he thought that if he could just choose nice neighbours, loving them would be a whole lot easier! But Jesus had news for him. He told him a story which challenged him to think differently about his neighbourhood and how he should be loving his neighbours. Sometimes we want to pick and choose the people we allow into our lives. People that are nice to us and don’t cause too many headaches are welcome but the different, the difficult and the dirty are not. Are we any different to the expert in the law? Listen as Pastor Michael explores the parable of the Good Samaritan. Let us consider what response this parable demands of us today