1 On that same day, after Jesus had left the house, he took his seat on the seashore; 2 and such a great crowd gathered about him that he got into a boat and sat in it, while all the crowd stood on the beach.
3 Then he told them many truths in parables. "Behold," he said, "the sower went forth to sow; 4 and as he sowed, some seed fell by the roadside, and the birds came and ate it. 5 Some fell on rocky ground where there was not much earth. Now because it had no depth of soil, it sprang up at once; 6 but when the sun rose it was scorched, and withered away because it had no root. 7 Some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up and choked it. 8 But some fell on good soil, and bore a crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. 9 He who has ears, let him hear!"
10 Now when his disciples came up to him, they said,
11 "Why do you speak to them in parables?" Jesus answered. "To you it has been granted to understand the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven; but to them it has not been granted. 12 "For whoever holds, to him shall more be given, and he shall have abundance; but whoever does not hold, from him shall be taken away even what he holds. 13 "This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. 14 And in them is being fulfilled that prophecy of Isaiah which says. "Hearing you will hear and not understand; Seeing you will see and not perceive; 15 For the heart of his people is made fat, Their ears are dull of hearing; Their eyes, too, have they closed, Lest some day their eyes should perceive, And their ears should hear, And their heart should understand and turn, And I should heal them.
16 "But happy are your eyes, because they see, and your ears because they hear. 17 "In solemn truth I tell you that many prophets and holy men have seen it not, and to hear what you are hearing, and have not heard it.
18 "Listen then, to the parable of the sower. 19 "Whenever any one hears the message of the kingdom, and does not understand it, the Evil One comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. 20 "This is the seed sown by the wayside. And the word, and at once receives it with joy. 21 "But he has no root in himself; he continues for a time, but when trouble arises, or persecutions, on account of the word, at once he stumbles and falls. 22 "And the seed sown among thorns is he who hears the word, but the anxieties of the age and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful. 23 "But the seed sown in good soil is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit, and makes now an hundredfold, now sixty, now thirty."
24 He told them another parable. "The kingdom of heaven," he said, "is like a man who sowed good seed in his field; 25 "but while men were asleep his enemy came and sowed tares among his wheat and went away. 26 "And when the blade shot up and formed the wheat-kernel, then the tares also appeared. 27 "The slaves of the owner went to him and said: "'Was it not good seed, sir, that you sowed in your field? From whence then, do you get tares?'
28 "'It is an enemy who has done this,' he answered. "The slaves said to him, 'Do you want us to go and collect them?'
29 "'No,' he answered, 'for fear lest while you are collecting the tares, you at the same time pull up the wheat. 30 "Let both grow together until harvest, and at harvest-time I will tell the reapers to first gather the tares and tie them in bundles for burning, but to bring all the wheat into my store-house.'"
31 He set forth to them another parable, saying. "The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard-seed which a man took and planted in his field. 32 "This is indeed the smallest of seeds, but when it is grown it is greater than any herb, and becomes a tree, so that the winged things of the sky come and roost in its branches."
33 He told them another parable. He said, "The kingdom of heaven is like leaven which a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, until the whole was leavened."
34 Jesus told all this to the crowd in parables; indeed he never spoke to them except in parables, 35 in fulfilment of the word spoken by the prophet, I will open my mouth in parables, I will utter things kept secret since the foundation of the world."
36 After he had sent the people away and gone into the house, his disciples came to him and said, "Explain to us the parable about the weeds in the field."
37 "The sower of the seed," he answered, "is the Son of man; 38 "the field is the world; the good seed is the sons of the kingdom; the weeds, the sons of the Evil One. 39 "The enemy who sows the weeds is the Devil. The harvest is the end of the age. The reapers are the angels. 40 "Just as the weeds are collected together and burnt with fire, so will it be at the end of the age. 41 "The son of man will send forth his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all hindrances, and whoever practices iniquity, 42 "and will throw them into the fiery furnace. There will be the weeping and the gnashing of teeth. 43 "And then shall the just shine forth like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Let him who has ears to hear, listen!
44 "The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure buried in the ground, which a man finds but buries again, and then in his joy goes and sells all that he has and buys that land.
45 "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of beautiful pearls. 46 "When he finds one of great price, he goes and sells everything he has and buys it.
47 "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was cast into the sea and gathered fish of every kind. 48 "When it was full they hauled it upon the beach, and sat down and sorted the good fish into baskets, but threw the worthless fish away. 49 "So will it be at the end of the age. The angels will go forth and separate the wicked from the righteous, and fling them into the furnace of fire. 50 "There shall be the weeping and the gnashing of teeth.
51 "Have you understood all this?" he asked. "We have," they answered him.
52 "Then," said he, "every scribe who has been instructed in the kingdom of heaven is like a householder who brings out of his storehouse new things and old." 53 After Jesus had finished these parables, he withdrew from that place,
54 and came into his own country, where he continued teaching the people in their synagogues, until they were amazed. "Where did he get such wisdom?" they said, "and such wondrous powers? 55 "Is not this the carpenter's son? Is not his mother called Mary? and his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? 56 "Are not his sisters all living among us? Where, then, did he get all these powers?" 57 This kept them from believing in him. Wherefore Jesus said, "A prophet is not without honor except in his own country and among his own family." 58 And he did no mighty works there, because of their lack of faith.