Books of the Book: Mark

Parables - Mark 4

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Kevin Hart, Tom Shepherd


Series Code: MBOTB

Program Code: MBOTB00004B

00:04 Welcome back to Books of the Books we are
00:06 talking about parables and professor
00:08 I have to ask the question again.
00:10 Why did Jesus speak in parables?
00:12 Alright we were looking at Mark chapter 4:11, 12,
00:16 and we came to the conclusion about the idea of a
00:20 mystery, something God reveals.
00:21 He was revealing that to the insiders,
00:24 His disciples but then He said those on the
00:27 outside get everything in parables.
00:28 So still we haven't heard as to why did Jesus talk
00:32 in parables and that is verse 12,
00:33 so read verse 12 for us again.
00:35 Sure, "that seeing they may see, and not perceive,
00:39 and hearing they may hear and not understand
00:42 lest at any time they should be converted and their
00:45 sins should be forgiven them. "
00:46 Which of course seems that is what we want.
00:50 To be forgiven - but the way you read this text
00:53 it sounds as though Jesus tells parables in order
00:56 to keep people, so they don't understand because it would
01:00 just be a terrible thing for them to be forgiven.
01:01 But that doesn't seem - it poses some serious problems.
01:05 Yeah serious problems about the character of God,
01:07 about Jesus and what's going on.
01:08 Now this verse has two words in it that can
01:13 be taken several different ways.
01:15 Now we have a graphic that shows these words
01:17 and it shows the Greek words.
01:18 The meaning of these two words in verse 12,
01:23 the meaning of the first one is pronounced hina,
01:26 or some people pronounce it hina, and it can mean
01:30 in order that, or so that, are with the result that,
01:33 because, or that is to say.
01:35 There are different meanings
01:36 for that one little word.
01:38 The other word, mepote and the term mepote means perhaps or
01:45 lest, or otherwise.
01:47 So you can see that with that many different meanings
01:51 for those two words, that there is probably several different
01:54 ways at this verse could be taken.
01:56 Now I teach Greek in the seminary and so I made a
02:01 translation of these two verses together to
02:04 demonstrate, or show how else it could be taken.
02:07 So we have a graphic that shows that translation.
02:13 And it reads like this: and he began to say to them the
02:17 mystery of the kingdom of God has been given to you.
02:20 But to those on the outside everything is in riddles,
02:23 because, now that's that first word hina, because although
02:30 they look, they look and do not see, and although
02:34 they listen, they listen and do not understand,
02:38 otherwise they
02:41 they would turn and it would be forgiven them.
02:44 Okay now let me ask you, from that translation does
02:47 that give you in any kind of different idea as to
02:50 the meaning of this verse? In fact it does because,
02:53 what it is saying is they as they are looking,
02:56 they are seeing or hearing what is being said.
03:00 So they are taking it in, but they are not seeing
03:04 it and they are not hearing it, and so to me that
03:07 would indicate on some level they are playing
03:10 a part in why they are not receiving it.
03:13 Yes - which would of course, the first word that
03:16 comes to my mind is choice.
03:17 Yes, it is because of their choice not to
03:21 really be willing to understand the message
03:25 that is being put across.
03:26 They have some may be some preconception or
03:29 something that they want to cling to and
03:31 they don't want to accept this truth and change
03:35 and so it is a riddle to them.
03:37 Now Jesus spoke in riddles, He spoke in parables.
03:41 But to those who had a willing heart, it was possible
03:44 to understand, to receive the understanding of the
03:48 passage and His lessons.
03:50 For those who didn't want to, it just sounded like
03:54 gibberish, like riddles.
03:56 So it is not Jesus trying to keep people out but
03:59 rather that the parable puts a choice before you.
04:03 Will you listen, will you understand?
04:05 Okay lets go on and take a look at this passage and
04:10 see a Jesus explained it.
04:12 It's found in verses 13-20 Mark 4:13-20.
04:17 Perhaps I will read verses 13-16, and then
04:23 you can read verses 17-20.
04:24 Here He gives the explanation.
04:26 "And he said to them, do you not understand this
04:29 parable? And how will you understand all the parables?
04:33 The sower sows the word, and these are those who are
04:37 beside the road and the word is sown, and when they
04:41 hear immediately Satan comes and takes away the word
04:45 which has been sown in them. In a similar way these are
04:48 the ones in whom the seed was sown on the rocky places.
04:52 Who when they hear the word immediately
04:54 receive it with joy. "
04:56 Verse 17, "and have no root in themselves and
05:03 so endure but for a time, afterward when
05:06 affliction or persecution arises for the words sake
05:10 immediately they are offended. And these are they
05:14 which are a sown among thorns such as hear the word
05:17 and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of
05:20 riches and the lust other things enter in, choke the
05:23 word and it becometh unfruitful. And these are they
05:26 which are sown on good ground such as hear the word and
05:29 receive it and bring forth fruit, some 30 fold,
05:32 some 60 and some a 100."
05:34 And so we have a basic understanding of this passage.
05:38 There are four kinds of soil, we might say 4 kinds of people.
05:43 The seed that is sown stands for
05:47 - the word of God, - the word of God
05:49 We have a graphic that puts it up in an easy form.
05:53 To see the different kinds of soil that there are.
05:58 The path type of soil is said to stand for those,
06:03 when they hear the word Satan comes and
06:06 snatches the word away.
06:07 It seems almost as though they are really not too
06:13 interested in spiritual things.
06:14 The word of God just kind of bounces off of them
06:17 and they never catch it.
06:19 The second group is rocky soil, stands for those
06:23 who have a temporary quality about them.
06:26 They fall away under pressure, when persecution comes
06:30 because of the word immediately they fall away.
06:34 This is like the heat of the sun is the fires of
06:37 persecution you might say that come on in.
06:39 Then we have the thorny ground, and that stands
06:43 for the cares of this age, the deceitfulness of wealth,
06:46 and the desires for other things.
06:49 We might think that this would be a common kind of
06:53 problem in our society today because of the increase
06:56 in wealth or opportunities to think just about
06:59 those kind of things.
07:00 Then we have the good soil were people do 3 things.
07:04 They listen to the word, they receive it,
07:07 and then they bear fruit.
07:09 So we have these 4 types of individuals.
07:16 There is an interesting characteristic to this story
07:18 that many people don't often notice.
07:20 That is as the story is told, it is as though Jesus has 4
07:26 little stories altogether.
07:28 The first is the story of the path and the seed
07:32 falls on the path and the birds come and eat it up.
07:36 Then the next, then He switches and He says now the rest
07:40 of the seeds fell on the ground that was kind of
07:43 thin, it was rocky soil and it's sprang up.
07:46 And then He has a thorny ground,
07:48 and He has the good ground.
07:49 The question is, how long does it take for each
07:53 thing to take place?
07:55 When the seed falls on the path how long would it
07:58 take before the birds would snatch it?
08:00 It could be seconds, you know birds have good eyesight,
08:02 it lands on the ground and poof before
08:03 you know it is gone.
08:04 It's gone that's right so that is very short.
08:06 What about for the rocky soil, how long would it take
08:09 for the seed to develop there?
08:11 It could be a matter of days, probably not a week.
08:14 It would have to germinate, it would have to spring up,
08:17 but the heat of the summer would have to burn it down.
08:20 Right, some the most maybe a week.
08:21 A week or two okay.
08:22 Then we have the thorny ground.
08:25 Alright so seed falls to the thorny ground and it
08:28 has to come up, but then the weeds have to come up.
08:32 So this is a little longer of a process, they have to grow
08:34 together for a little while.
08:36 They have to grow together for a while so
08:37 that's even longer yet.
08:38 And then we have the good soil, how long does
08:40 that take for that to develop into a harvest?
08:41 Full season I guess - full season like usually 4 months.
08:45 Something like that!
08:46 So it's interesting as we look at this story, that
08:49 the first story is the shortest in terms of time.
08:51 The second one is a little longer, the third one is
08:54 longer yet and the fourth one is the longest of all.
08:57 So the kind of idea that there presents to us is,
09:01 if you want to bear the Gospel seed - it takes a
09:05 little bit of a time.
09:06 You need to be in it for the long haul.
09:08 Discipleship is just not momentary, once a week,
09:13 once a year, just one time of an experience.
09:16 It is - you know that's a good illustration too
09:20 because so often you hear about these big revivals,
09:23 these really mega revivals, sometimes they are televised.
09:27 People get so excited at them and the energy
09:29 so they are excited for the moment and they
09:32 make their decision for Christ.
09:33 It last maybe a week, maybe a month of the most,
09:35 depending on a different time but it doesn't last because
09:38 as soon as the problems start to occur we forget and
09:42 have to remember sometimes it takes time.
09:44 The Christian experience is not something that
09:46 happens overnight, sometimes we expect too much
09:47 in too short a time.
09:49 Now people will ask the question how can I help
09:52 someone who is an outsider to become an insider?
09:55 Perhaps you have somebody in your family
09:58 who isn't faithful and you've wondered,
10:01 how can I reach out to them? What can I do?
10:04 We have a little list here in a graphic that shows
10:06 just some basic steps to follow in reaching those
10:09 who are outsiders.
10:11 The first thing we would say is to pray for
10:13 them on a daily basis.
10:16 You know prayer is really about our hearts
10:18 being drawn to God and becoming like Him,
10:21 being drawn up to His thought, it changes us.
10:24 So it changes our attitudes towards these people.
10:27 The second thing is to not force people to believe,
10:30 you can't anyways, but don't force faith on them.
10:33 Respect their freedom of choice.
10:35 The third is speak little, listen more, and live the
10:40 faith the most. - that is a hard one for a lot of us.
10:44 In the book of 1 Peter we are told what an unbelieving
10:49 wife is to do, a believing wife towards an unbelieving husband.
10:53 What she's supposed to do is not to make herself up
10:57 on the outside, but she is to live the life
11:00 before him without a word.
11:02 Without saying, she's to live a Christian life
11:04 and it draws him.
11:05 The 4 thing is to answer questions when they arise.
11:09 This is called "tagging" and I will come back
11:11 to that in a moment.
11:12 And the last item is to invite them to come
11:15 with you to God's house.
11:17 You know so many times we miss the opportunity just to
11:22 invite somebody to come to church. - Right!
11:23 I mean that is where they are going to hear the
11:25 word of God, that's where things are going
11:26 to be planted in their hearts.
11:28 Now let me come back to this whole thing of tagging.
11:30 Did you ever play tag when you were a kid?
11:31 Oh yeah, everybody has.
11:32 Tag you are it!
11:33 Tagging is a wonderful way to do witnessing.
11:36 I heard about some time ago that it is very,
11:39 very positive and very low-key.
11:41 What it is you have a experience where you are just
11:44 talking in a casual conversation with somebody,
11:48 and what you do is you mention something that relates
11:51 to your spiritual life.
11:53 You've tagged them.
11:55 Now if they are interested in spiritual things,
11:58 they will respond and say, oh is that so.
12:01 Or some way they will respond to the spiritual
12:04 reference you have made. - okay!
12:07 This opens the door for you to share more
12:10 about faith with them, if they don't respond
12:12 then they are not interested.
12:14 I had an experience just a few days ago,
12:16 it was very interesting.
12:17 I was in the barbershop, I figured when I came on TV
12:18 for 3ABN my hair ought to look a little better.
12:21 I went into a barbershop I sat down and I said,
12:24 I figured I should get a haircut because
12:26 I'm going to be on television.
12:27 And that was my tag.
12:29 And they immediately became interested and
12:31 Oh what's that?
12:32 I said was there was a religious broadcaster that
12:34 asked me to come and give these presentations on the
12:36 Gospel of Mark.
12:37 So the young lady that was cutting my hair, she said,
12:41 oh she said are you a pastor?
12:43 I said yeah I'm a pastor, teacher, so then she said,
12:49 So she said did you enjoy church today?
12:52 So that open to discussion about the Sabbath and I
12:55 had the whole time I was there a discussion about
12:57 spiritual things centered around the Sabbath.
13:00 Tagging I like that, that's a practical way
13:02 to sharing and witnessing.
13:04 I cannot believe how fast our time went.
13:05 We had so much to cover and hopefully
13:07 we got the most important things.
13:08 Professor I want to thank you once again for
13:10 coming in and joining us and sharing all the things
13:13 you've studied over the years.
13:14 Good to be here, I thank you very much.
13:15 Appreciate that!
13:16 Don't forget folks, the purpose of the parables
13:18 was not to keep people out but to bring people in.
13:21 Tag, share, witness, pray for and love people until
13:24 they come to the Lord.


Revised 2014-12-17