1 That same day Jesus went out of His house and was sitting on the seashore. 2 And the crowds that gathered about Him were so great that He got into a boat and remained sitting in it, while all the crowd stood on the seashore.
3 And in stories, by way of comparison, He told them many things, as He continued to speak: "A sower went out to sow, 4 and as he was sowing, some of the seed fell along the path, and the birds came and ate them up, 5 and some fell upon rocky ground where they did not have much soil, and at once they sprang up, because there was no depth of soil, 6 and when the sun was up they were scorched and dried up, because they had no root. 7 And some fell among the thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them out. 8 And some fell in rich soil, and yielded a crop, some a hundred, some sixty, some thirty-fold. 9 Let him who has ears listen."
10 Then His disciples came up to Him and asked, "Why do you speak to them in stories?"
11 He answered: "It is you and not they who are granted the privilege of knowing the secrets of the kingdom of heaven. 12 For to anyone who has, more will be given, and his supply will overflow, but from anyone who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. 13 This is why I am speaking to them in stories, because they look but do not see, they listen but do not really hear or understand. 14 So in them the prophecy of the prophet Isaiah is fulfilled, which says: "'You will listen and listen and not understand, and you will look and look and never see at all, 15 For this people's soul has grown dull, and with their ears they can scarcely hear, and they have shut tight their eyes, so that they will never see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their hearts, and turn to me, so that I may cure them!'
16 "But blessed are your eyes, for they are beginning to see, and your ears, for they are beginning to hear. 17 For I solemnly say to you, many prophets and upright men yearned to see what you are seeing, and did not see it, and to hear what you are hearing, and did not hear it.
18 "Now listen closely to the story of the sower. 19 When anyone hears the message of the kingdom and does not understand it, the wicked one comes and carries off the seed that was sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path. 20 And what was sown upon the thin rocky soil illustrates the man who hears the message and bubbling over with joy at once accepts it, 21 but it takes no real root in him, and he lasts only a little while, and just as soon as suffering and persecution come for the truth's sake, he at once yields and falls. 22 And what was sown among the thorns illustrates the man who hears the message, and the worries of the times and the pleasures of being rich choke the truth out, and he yields no fruit. 23 And what was sown in rich soil illustrates the man who hears the message and understands it, and yields fruit, one a hundred, one sixty, another thirty-fold."
24 He told them another story, as follows: "The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed seed in his field. 25 But while the world was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed wild wheat seed in the midst of the good seed, and went away. 26 And when the wheat plants grew up and yielded their ripened grain, the wild wheat plants appeared too. 27 And the farmer's slaves came up to him and said, 'Master, did you not sow good seed in your field? Then where did the wild wheat plants come from?'
28 He said to them, 'An enemy has done this.' Then they said to him, 'Do you want us, then, to go and gather them?'
29 And he said, 'No, never, for while you are gathering the wild wheat plants you might root up the good ones with them. 30 Let them both grow together until harvest time, and at the harvest time I will order the reapers, "Gather first the wild wheat plants and tie them into bundles to be burned up, but get the wheat into my barn."'"
31 He told them this story, as follows: "The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a mustard seed which a man took and sowed in his field. 32 It is the smallest of all seeds, but when it is grown it is the largest of plants; yea, it grows into a tree, so that the wild birds come and roost in its branches."
33 He told another story: "The kingdom of heaven may be compared to yeast which a woman took and worked into a bushel of flour until it all had risen."
34 Jesus told the crowds all this in stories, and without a story He told them nothing, 35 to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet: "I will open my mouth in stories, I will utter truths concealed since creation."
36 Then He left the crowds and went into His house. And His disciples came up to Him and said, "Explain to us the story of the wild wheat in the field."
37 And He answered: "The sower of the good seed is the Son of Man; 38 the field is the world; the good seed are the members of the kingdom; the wild wheat seed are the followers of the wicked one. 39 The enemy who sowed them is the devil, the harvest is the close of the age, the reapers are angels. 40 Just as the wild wheat plants are gathered and burned up, so it will be at the close of the age. 41 The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all those who cause wrongdoing, and the wrongdoers, 42 and will throw them into the furnace of torturing punishment; there they will wail and grind their teeth. 43 Then the upright will shine out like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Let him who has ears listen!
44 "The kingdom of heaven is like a pot of gold which was buried in a field, which a man found and buried again; and for joy over it he went and sold all he had and bought that field.
45 "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a gem-dealer who was looking for beautiful pearls. 46 One day he found a very costly pearl, and he went and sold all he had and bought it.
47 "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a dragnet that was let down into the sea, and gathered fish of every kind, 48 which, when it was full, the fishermen drew up on the shore, and sat down and picked out the good fish for their baskets and threw the bad away. 49 So it will be at the close of the age; the angels will go out and separate the wicked from the upright, 50 and will throw them into the furnace of torturing punishment. There they will wail and grind their teeth.
51 "Do you understand all these stories?" They answered Him, "Yes."
52 He said to them, "Every scribe who has become a disciple in the kingdom of heaven is like a householder who can bring out of his storeroom new furnishings as well as old." 53 When Jesus had finished these stories, He left there.
54 He went to His own home town, and kept teaching in their synagogue in such a way that they were dumbfounded, and said, "Where did He get this wisdom and this power to do such wonder-works? 55 Is He not the carpenter's son? Is not His mother's name Mary, are not His brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas? 56 And are not His sisters all living here with us? Where then did He get all these things?" 57 And so they found a cause for stumbling over Him. But Jesus said to them, "A prophet never fails to be honored except in his native neighborhood and in his own home." And so 58 He did not do many wonder-works there, because of their lack of faith.