Thematic Bible: Parables of


Thematic Bible



Then he told them a parable. He said, "The land of a certain rich man produced good crops. So he began to think to himself, "What should I do, since I have no place to store my crops?' Then he said, "This is what I'll do. I'll tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and I'll store all my grain and goods in them. read more.
Then I'll say to myself, "You've stored up plenty of good things for many years. Take it easy, eat, drink, and enjoy yourself."' But God told him, "You fool! This very night your life will be demanded back from you. Now who will get the things you've accumulated?'


"At that time, the kingdom from heaven will be comparable to ten bridesmaids who took their oil lamps and went out to meet the groom. Now five of them were foolish, and five were wise, because when the foolish ones took their lamps, they didn't take any oil with them. read more.
But the wise ones took flasks of oil with their lamps. Since the groom was late, all of them became sleepy and lay down. But at midnight there came a shout: "The groom is here! Come out to meet him!' Then all the bridesmaids woke up and got their lamps ready. "But the foolish ones told the wise, "Give us some of your oil, because our lamps are going out!' "But the wise ones replied, "No! There will never be enough for us and for you. You'd better go to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.' "While they were away buying it, the groom arrived. Those who were ready went with him into the wedding banquet, and the door was closed. Later, the other bridesmaids arrived and said, "Lord, lord, open up for us!' "But he replied, "I tell all of you with certainty, I don't know you!' So keep on watching, because you don't know the day or the hour."


Then he began to tell them many things in parables. He said, "Listen! A farmer went out to sow. As he was sowing, some seeds fell along the path, and birds came and ate them up. Other seeds fell on stony ground, where they did not have a lot of soil. They sprouted at once because the soil wasn't deep. read more.
But when the sun came up, they were scorched. Since they did not have any roots, they dried up. Other seeds fell among thorn bushes, and the thorn bushes grew higher and choked them out. But other seeds fell on good soil and produced a crop, some 100, some 60, and some 30 times what was sown. Let the person who has ears listen!"

"A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was sowing, some seeds fell along the path, were trampled on, and birds from the sky ate them up. Others fell on stony ground, and as soon as they came up, they dried up because they had no moisture. Others fell among thorn bushes, and the thorn bushes grew with them and choked them. read more.
But others fell on good soil, and when they came up, they produced 100 times as much as was planted." As he said this, he called out, "Let the person who has ears to hear, listen!"

"Listen, then, to the parable about the farmer. When anyone hears the word about the kingdom yet doesn't understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path. As for what was sown on the stony ground, this is the person who hears the word and accepts it joyfully at once, read more.
but since he doesn't have any root in himself, he lasts for only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes along because of the word, he immediately falls away. As for what was sown among the thorn bushes, this is the person who hears the word, but the worries of life and the deceitful pleasures of wealth choke the word so that it can't produce a crop. But as for what was sown on good soil, this is the person who hears the word, understands it, and produces a crop that yields 100, 60, or 30 times what was sown."

Then Jesus began to teach again beside the sea. Such a large crowd gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat in it, while the entire crowd remained beside the sea on the shore. He began teaching them many things in parables. While he was teaching them he said, "Listen! A farmer went out to sow. read more.
As he was sowing, some seeds fell along the path, and birds came and ate them up. Others fell on stony ground, where they didn't have a lot of soil. They sprouted at once, because the soil wasn't deep. But when the sun came up, they were scorched. Since they didn't have any roots, they dried up. Others fell among thorn bushes, and the thorn bushes came up and choked them out, and they didn't produce anything. But others fell on good soil and produced a crop. They grew up, increased in size, and produced 30, 60, or 100 times what was sown." He added, "Let the person who has ears to hear, listen!"

The farmer sows the word. Some people are like the seeds along the path, where the word is sown. When they hear it, Satan immediately comes and takes away the word that was sown in them. Others are like the seeds sown on the stony ground. When they hear the word, at once they joyfully accept it, read more.
but since they don't have any roots, they last for only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes along because of the word, they immediately fall away. Still others are like the seeds sown among the thorn bushes. These are the people who hear the word, but the worries of life, the deceitful pleasures of wealth, and the desires for other things come in and choke the word so that it can't produce a crop. Others are like the seeds sown on good soil. They hear the word, accept it, and produce crops 30, 60, or 100 times what was sown."

"Now this is what the parable means. The seed is God's word. The ones on the path are the people who listen, but then the Devil comes and takes the word away from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. The ones on the stony ground are the people who joyfully welcome the word when they hear it. But since they don't have any roots, they believe for a while, but in a time of testing they fall away. read more.
The ones that fell among the thorn bushes are the people who listen, but as they go on their way they are choked by the worries, wealth, and pleasures of life, and their fruit doesn't mature. But the ones on the good soil are the people who hear the word but also hold on to it with good and honest hearts, producing a crop through endurance."


He presented another parable to them, saying, "The kingdom from heaven is like a mustard seed that a man took and planted in his field. Although it is the smallest of all seeds, when it is fully grown it is larger than the garden plants and becomes a tree, and the birds in the sky come and nest in its branches."

So Jesus went on to say, "What is the kingdom of God like? What can I compare it to? It is like a mustard seed that someone took and planted in his garden. It grew and became a tree, and the birds of the sky nested in its branches."

He was also saying, "How can we show what the kingdom of God is like, or what parable can we use to describe it? It's like a mustard seed planted in the ground. Although it's the smallest of all the seeds on earth, when it's planted it comes up and becomes larger than all the garden plants. It grows such large branches that the birds in the sky can nest in its shade."


Then Jesus began to speak to them in parables. "A man planted a vineyard. He put a wall around it, dug a pit for the wine press, and built a watchtower. Then he leased it to tenant farmers and went abroad. At the right time, he sent a servant to the farmers to collect from them a share of the produce from the vineyard. But the farmers grabbed the servant, beat him, and sent him back empty-handed. read more.
Again, the man sent another servant to them. They beat the servant over the head and treated him shamefully. Then the man sent another, and that one they killed. So it was with many other servants. Some of these they beat, and others they killed. He still had one more person to send, a son whom he loved. Finally, he sent him to them, saying, "They will respect my son.' But those farmers told one another, "This is the heir. Come on, let's kill him, and the inheritance will be ours!' So they grabbed him, killed him, and threw him out of the vineyard. "Now what will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come, execute the farmers, and give the vineyard to others. Haven't you ever read this Scripture: "The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. This was the Lord's doing, and it is amazing in our eyes'?" They were trying to arrest him but were afraid of the crowd. Realizing that he had spoken this parable against them, they left him alone and went away.

"Listen to another parable. There was a landowner who planted a vineyard, put a wall around it, dug a wine press in it, and built a watchtower. Then he leased it to tenant farmers and went abroad. When harvest time approached, he sent his servants to the tenant farmers to collect his produce. But the farmers took his servants and beat one, killed another, and attacked another with stones. read more.
Again, he sent other servants to them, a greater number than the first, but the tenant farmers treated them the same way. Finally, he sent his son to them, thinking, "They will respect my son.' But when the tenant farmers saw his son, they told one another, "This is the heir. Come on, let's kill him and get his inheritance!' So they grabbed him, threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him. Now when the owner of the vineyard returns, what will he do to those farmers?" They told him, "He will put those horrible men to a horrible death. Then he will lease the vineyard to other farmers who will give him his produce at harvest time." Jesus asked them, "Have you never read in the Scriptures, "The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. This was the Lord's doing, and it is amazing in our eyes.'? That is why I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce fruit for it. The person who falls over this stone will be broken to pieces, but it will crush anyone on whom it falls."

Then he began to tell the people this parable: "A man planted a vineyard, leased it to tenant farmers, and went abroad for a long time. At the right time he sent a servant to the farmers in order to get his share of the produce of the vineyard. But the farmers beat him and sent him back empty-handed. He sent another servant, and they beat him, too, treated him shamefully, and sent him back empty-handed. read more.
Then he sent a third, and they wounded him and threw him out, too. "Then the owner of the vineyard said, "What should I do? I'll send my son whom I love. Maybe they'll respect him.' But when the farmers saw him, they talked it over among themselves and said, "This is the heir. Let's kill him so that the inheritance will be ours!' So they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. Now what will the owner of the vineyard do to them? He will come and destroy those farmers and give the vineyard to others." Those who heard him said, "That must never happen!" But Jesus looked at them and asked, "What does this text mean: "The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone'? Everyone who falls on that stone will be broken to pieces, and it will crush anyone on whom it falls."


"Therefore, everyone who listens to these messages of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on a rock. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, but it did not collapse because its foundation was on the rock. "Everyone who keeps on hearing these messages of mine and never puts them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. read more.
The rain fell, the floods came, the winds blew and battered that house, and it collapsed and its collapse was total."

I will show you what everyone is like who comes to me, hears my words, and acts on them. They are like a person building a house, who dug a deep hole to lay the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the floodwaters pushed against that house but couldn't shake it, because it had been founded on the rock. But the person who hears what I say but doesn't act on it is like someone who built a house on the ground without any foundation. When the floodwaters pushed against it, that house quickly collapsed, and the resulting destruction of that house was extensive."


So he told them this parable: "Suppose one of you has 100 sheep and loses one of them. He leaves the 99 in the wilderness and looks for the one that is lost until he finds it, doesn't he? When he finds it, he puts it on his shoulders and rejoices. read more.
Then he goes home, calls his friends and neighbors together, and says to them, "Rejoice with me, because I've found my lost sheep!' In the same way, I tell you that there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over 99 righteous people who don't need to repent."

"What do you think? If a man has 100 sheep and one of them strays, he leaves the 99 in the hills and goes to look for the one that has strayed, doesn't he? If he finds it, I tell all of you with certainty that he rejoices over it more than over the 99 that haven't strayed. In the same way, it is not the will of your Father in heaven that one of these little ones should be lost."


"Now learn a lesson from the fig tree. When its branches become tender and it produces leaves, you know that summer is near.

"Now learn a lesson from the fig tree. When its branches become tender and it produces leaves, you know that summer is near. In the same way, when you see these things taking place, you will know that the Son of Man is near, right at the door.


He told them another parable: "The kingdom from heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed with three measures of flour until all of it was leavened."

Again he said, "To what can I compare the kingdom of God? It's like yeast that a woman took and mixed with three measures of flour until all of it was leavened."


He presented another parable to them: "The kingdom from heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field. While people were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat and went away. When the crop came up and bore grain, the weeds appeared, too. read more.
"The owner's servants came and asked him, "Master, you sowed good seed in your field, didn't you? Then where did these weeds come from?' "He told them, "An enemy did this!' "The servants asked him, "Do you want us to go and pull them out?' "He said, "No! If you pull out the weeds, you might pull out the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest, and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, "Gather the weeds first and tie them in bundles for burning, but bring the wheat into my barn."'"

Then Jesus left the crowds and went into the house. His disciples came to him and asked, "Explain to us the parable about the weeds in the field." He answered, "The person who sowed good seed is the Son of Man, while the field is the world. The good seed are those who belong to the kingdom, while the weeds are those who belong to the evil one. read more.
The enemy who sowed them is the Devil, the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are the angels. Just as weeds are gathered and burned with fire, so it will be at end of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will gather from his kingdom everything that causes others to sin and those who practice lawlessness and they will throw them into a blazing furnace. In that place there will be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in their Father's kingdom. Let the person who has ears listen!"


Then Jesus said, "A man had two sons. The younger one told his father, "Father, give me my share of the estate.' So the father divided his property between them. A few days later, the younger son gathered everything he owned and traveled to a distant country. There he wasted it all on wild living. read more.
After he had spent everything, a severe famine took place throughout that country, and he began to be in need. So he went out to work for one of the citizens of that country, who sent him into his fields to feed pigs. No one would give him anything, even though he would gladly have filled himself with the husks the pigs were eating. "Then he came to his senses and said, "How many of my father's hired men have more food than they can eat, and here I am starving to death! I will get up, go to my father, and say to him, "Father, I have sinned against heaven and you. I don't deserve to be called your son anymore. Treat me like one of your hired men."' "So he got up and went to his father. While he was still far away, his father saw him and was filled with compassion. He ran to his son, threw his arms around him, and kissed him affectionately. Then his son told him, "Father, I have sinned against heaven and you. I don't deserve to be called your son anymore.' But the father told his servants, "Hurry! Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let's eat and celebrate! Because my son was dead and has come back to life. He was lost and has been found.' And they began to celebrate. "Now the father's older son was in the field. As he was coming back to the house, he heard music and dancing. So he called to one of the servants and asked what was happening. The servant told him, "Your brother has come home, and your father has killed the fattened calf because he got him back safely.' "Then the older son became angry and wouldn't go into the house. So his father came out and began to plead with him. But he answered his father, "Listen! All these years I've worked like a slave for you. I've never disobeyed a command of yours. Yet you've never given me so much as a young goat for a festival so I could celebrate with my friends. But this son of yours spent your money on prostitutes, and when he came back, you killed the fattened calf for him!' "His father told him, "My child, you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead and has come back to life. He was lost and has been found.'"


"You must keep your belts fastened and your lamps burning. Be like people who are waiting for their master to return from a wedding. As soon as he arrives and knocks, they will open the door for him. How blessed are those servants whom the master finds watching for him when he comes! I tell all of you with certainty, he himself will put on an apron, make them sit down at the table, and go around and serve them. read more.
How blessed they will be if their master comes in the middle of the night or near dawn and finds them awake! But be sure of this: if the homeowner had known at what time the thief were coming, he would have watched and would not have let his house be broken into. So be ready, because the Son of Man is coming at a time when you don't expect him."


"Once there was a rich man who used to dress in purple and fine linen and live in great luxury every day. A beggar named Lazarus, who was covered with sores, was brought to his gate. He was always trying to satisfy his hunger with what fell from the rich man's table. Even the dogs used to come and lick his sores. read more.
"One day, the beggar died and was carried away by the angels to Abraham's side. The rich man also died and was buried. In the afterlife, where he was in constant torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away and Lazarus by his side. So he shouted, "Father Abraham, have mercy on me! Send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water to cool off my tongue, because I am suffering in this fire.' "But Abraham said, "My child, remember that during your lifetime you received blessings, while Lazarus received hardships. But now he is being comforted here, while you suffer. Besides all this, a wide chasm has been fixed between us, so that those who want to cross from this side to you cannot do so, nor can they cross from your side to us.' "The rich man said, "Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my father's house because I have five brothers to warn them, so that they won't end up in this place of torture, too.' "Abraham said, "They have Moses and the Prophets. They should listen to them!' "But the rich man replied, "No, father Abraham! But if someone from the dead went to them, they would repent.' "Then Abraham told him, "If your brothers do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded, even if someone were to rise from the dead.'"


"Again, the kingdom from heaven is like a merchant searching for fine pearls. When he found a very valuable pearl, he went and sold everything he had and bought it."


"That is why the kingdom from heaven may be compared to a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. When he had begun to settle the accounts, a person who owed him 10,000 talents was brought to him. Because he couldn't pay, his master ordered him, his wife, his children, and everything that he owned to be sold so that payment could be made. read more.
Then the servant fell down and bowed low before him, saying, "Be patient with me, and I will repay you everything!' The master of that servant had compassion and released him, canceling his debt. "But when that servant went away, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii. He grabbed him, seized him by the throat, and said, "Pay what you owe!' Then his fellow servant fell down and began begging him, "Be patient with me and I will repay you!' But he refused and had him thrown into prison until he could repay the debt. "When his fellow servants saw what had happened, they were very disturbed and went and reported to their master everything that had occurred. Then his master sent for him and told him, "You evil servant! I canceled that entire debt for you because you begged me. Shouldn't you have had mercy on your fellow servant, just as I had mercy on you?' In anger his master handed him over to the jailers until he could repay the entire debt. This is how my heavenly Father will treat each one of you unless you forgive your brother from your hearts."


"Truly, I tell all of you emphatically, the person who doesn't enter the sheepfold through the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a bandit. The one who enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. It's to him the gatekeeper opens the gate, and it's his voice the sheep hear. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. read more.
When he has driven out all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they recognize his voice. They'll never follow a stranger, but will run away from him because they don't recognize the voice of strangers." Jesus used this illustration with them, but they didn't understand what he was saying to them. So again Jesus said, "Truly, I tell all of you emphatically, I'm the gate for the sheep. All who came before me are thieves and bandits, but the sheep didn't listen to them. I'm the gate. If anyone enters through me, he will be saved. He'll come in and go out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal, slaughter, and destroy. I've come that they may have life, and have it abundantly. "I'm the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired worker, who isn't the shepherd and doesn't own the sheep, sees the wolf coming, deserts the sheep, and runs away. So the wolf snatches them and scatters them, because he's a hired worker, and the sheep don't matter to him. I'm the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father. And I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that don't belong to this fold. I must lead these also, and they'll listen to my voice. So there will be one flock and one shepherd.


Now one of those eating with him heard this and told him, "How blessed is the person who will eat in the kingdom of God!" Jesus told him, "A man gave a large banquet and invited many people. When it was time for the banquet, he sent his servant to tell those who were invited, "Come! Everything is now ready.' read more.
Every single one of them began asking to be excused. The first told him, "I bought a field, and I need to go out and inspect it. Please excuse me.' Another said, "I bought five pairs of oxen, and I'm on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.' Still another said, "I recently got married, so I can't come.' "So the servant went back and reported all this to his master. Then the master of the house became angry and told his servant, "Go quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring back the poor, the crippled, the blind, and the lame.' The servant said, "Sir, what you ordered has been done, and there is still room.' Then the master told the servant, "Go out into the streets and the lanes and make the people come in, so that my house may be full. Because I tell all of you, none of those men who were invited will taste anything at my banquet.'"


"Again, the kingdom from heaven is like a large net thrown into the sea that gathered all kinds of fish. When it was full, the fishermen hauled it ashore. Then they sat down, sorted the good fish into containers, and threw the bad ones away. That is how it will be at the end of the age. The angels will go out, cull out the evil people from among the righteous ones, read more.
and will throw them into a blazing furnace. In that place there will be wailing and gnashing of teeth."


It's like a man who went on a trip. As he left home, he put his servants in charge, each with his own work, and he ordered the doorkeeper to be alert. So keep on watching, because you don't know when the master of the house is coming whether in the evening, at three o'clock in the morning, or at dawn. Otherwise, he may come suddenly and find you asleep. read more.
I'm telling you what I'm telling everyone: Be alert!"


After careful consideration, Jesus replied, "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho when he fell into the hands of bandits. They stripped him, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead. By chance, a priest was traveling along that road. When he saw the man, he went by on the other side. Similarly, a descendant of Levi came to that place. When he saw the man, he also went by on the other side. read more.
But as he was traveling along, a Samaritan came across the man. When the Samaritan saw him, he was moved with compassion. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. The next day, he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, "Take good care of him. If you spend more than that, I'll repay you when I come back.' "Of these three men, who do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the bandits?" He said, "The one who showed mercy to him." Jesus told him, "Go and do what he did."


Then he told them a parable. He said, "The land of a certain rich man produced good crops. So he began to think to himself, "What should I do, since I have no place to store my crops?' Then he said, "This is what I'll do. I'll tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and I'll store all my grain and goods in them. read more.
Then I'll say to myself, "You've stored up plenty of good things for many years. Take it easy, eat, drink, and enjoy yourself."' But God told him, "You fool! This very night your life will be demanded back from you. Now who will get the things you've accumulated?' That's how it is with the person who stores up treasures for himself rather than with God."


"But what do you think? A man had two sons. He went to the first and said, "Son, go and work in the vineyard today.' His son replied, "I don't want to,' but later he changed his mind and went. Then the father went to the other son and told him the same thing. He replied, "I will, sir,' but he didn't go. read more.
Which of the two did the father's will?" They answered, "The first one." Jesus told them, "I tell all of you with certainty, tax collectors and prostitutes will get into God's kingdom ahead of you! John came to you living a righteous life, and you didn't believe him, but the tax collectors and prostitutes did. But even when you saw that, you didn't change your minds at last and believe him."


"Similarly, it is like a man going on a trip, who called his servants and turned his money over to them. To one man he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, based on their ability. Then he went on his trip. "The one who received five talents went out at once and invested them and earned five more. read more.
In the same way, the one who had two talents earned two more. But the one who received one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground, and buried his master's money. "After a long time, the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. The one who had received five talents came up and brought five more talents. "Master,' he said, "you gave me five talents. See, I've earned five more talents.' "His master told him, "Well done, good and trustworthy servant! Since you've been trustworthy with a small amount, I'll put you in charge of a large amount. Come and share your master's joy!' "The one with two talents also came forward and said, "Master, you gave me two talents. See, I've earned two more talents. "His master told him, "Well done, good and trustworthy servant! Since you've been trustworthy with a small amount, I'll put you in charge of a large amount. Come and share your master's joy!' "Then the one who had received one talent came forward and said, "Master, I knew that you were a hard man, harvesting where you haven't planted and gathering where you haven't scattered any seed. Since I was afraid, I went off and hid your talent in the ground. Here, take what's yours!' "His master answered him, "You evil and lazy servant! So you knew that I harvested where I haven't planted and gathered where I haven't scattered any seed? Then you should've invested my money with the bankers. When I returned, I would've received my money back with interest.' Then the master said, "Take the talent from him and give it to the man who has the ten talents, because to everyone who has something, more will be given, and he'll have more than enough. But from the person who has nothing, even what he has will be taken away from him. Throw this useless servant into the darkness outside! In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'"


As they were listening to this, Jesus went on to tell a parable because he was near Jerusalem and because the people thought that the kingdom of God would appear immediately. So he said, "A prince went to a distant country to be appointed king and then to return. He called ten of his servants and gave them ten coins. He told them, "Invest this money until I come back.' read more.
But the citizens of his country hated him and sent a delegation to follow him and to announce, "We don't want this man to rule over us!' "After he was appointed king, the prince came back. He ordered the servants to whom he had given the money to be called so he could find out what they had earned by investing. The first servant came and said, "Sir, your coin has earned ten more coins.' The king told him, "Well done, good servant! Because you have been trustworthy in a very small thing, take charge of ten cities.' "The second servant came and said, "Your coin, sir, has earned five coins.' The king told him, "You take charge of five cities.' "Then the other servant came and said, "Sir, look! Here's your coin. I've kept it in a cloth for safekeeping because I was afraid of you. You are a hard man. You withdraw what you didn't deposit and harvest what you didn't plant.' The king told him, "I will judge you by your own words, you evil servant! You knew, did you, that I was a hard man, and that I withdraw what I didn't deposit and harvest what I didn't plant? Then why didn't you put my money in the bank? When I returned, I could have collected it with interest.' "So the king told those standing nearby, "Take the coin away from him and give it to the man who has the ten coins.' They answered him, "Sir, he already has ten coins!' "I tell you, to everyone who has something, more will be given, but from the person who has nothing, even what he has will be taken away. But as for these enemies of mine who didn't want me to be their king bring them here and slaughter them in my presence!'"


"Or suppose a woman has ten coins and loses one of them. She lights a lamp, sweeps the house, and searches carefully until she finds it, doesn't she? When she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together and says, "Rejoice with me, because I have found the coin that I lost!' In the same way, I tell you that there is joy in the presence of God's angels over one sinner who repents."


Jesus also told this parable to some people who trusted in themselves, thinking they were righteous, but who looked down on everyone else: "Two men went up to the Temple to pray. One was a Pharisee, and the other was a tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed, "O God, I thank you that I'm not like other people thieves, dishonest people, adulterers, or even this tax collector. read more.
I fast twice a week, and I give a tenth of my entire income.' "But the tax collector stood at a distance and would not even look up to heaven. Instead, he continued to beat his chest and said, "O God, be merciful to me, the sinner that I am!' I tell you, this man, rather than the other one, went down to his home justified, because everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the person who humbles himself will be exalted."


Again Jesus spoke to them in parables. He said, "The kingdom from heaven may be compared to a king who gave a wedding banquet for his son. He sent his servants to call those who had been invited to the wedding, but they refused to come. read more.
So he sent other servants after saying, "Tell those who have been invited, "Look! I've prepared my dinner. My oxen and fattened calves have been slaughtered. Everything is ready. Come to the wedding!"' But they paid no attention to this and went away, one to his farm, another to his business. The rest grabbed the king's servants, treated them brutally, and then killed them. Then the king became outraged. He sent his troops, and they destroyed those murderers and burned their city. "Then he told his servants, "The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. So go into the roads leading out of town and invite as many people as you can find to the wedding.' Those servants went out into the streets and brought in everyone they found, evil and good alike, and the wedding hall was packed with guests. "When the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes. He asked him, "Friend, how did you get in here without wedding clothes?' But the man was speechless. Then the king told his servants, "Tie his hands and feet, and throw him into the darkness outside!' In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, because many are invited, but few are chosen."


"The kingdom from heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire workers for his vineyard. After agreeing to pay the workers one denarius a day, he sent them into his vineyard. When he went out about nine o'clock, he saw others standing in the marketplace without work. read more.
He told them, "You go into the vineyard, too, and I will pay you whatever is right.' So off they went. He went out again about noon and about three o'clock and did the same thing. About five o'clock he went out and found some others standing around. He asked them, "Why are you standing here all day long without work?' They told him, "Because no one has hired us.' He told them, "You go into the vineyard as well.' "When evening came, the owner of the vineyard told his manager, "Call the workers and give them their wages, beginning with the last and ending with the first.' Those who were hired at five o'clock came, and each received a denarius. "When the first came, they thought they would receive more, but each received a denarius as well. When they received it, they began to complain to the landowner, "These last fellows worked only one hour, but you paid them the same as us, and we've been working all day, enduring the scorching heat!' "But he told one of them, "Friend, I'm not treating you unfairly. You did agree with me for a denarius, didn't you? Take what is yours and go. I want to give this last man as much as I gave you. I am allowed to do what I want with my own money, am I not? Or are you envious because I'm generous?' "In the same way, the last will be first, and the first will be last, because many are called, but few are chosen."


"Two men were in debt to a moneylender. One owed him 500 denarii, and the other 50. When they couldn't pay it back, he generously canceled the debts for both of them. Now which of them will love him more?" Simon answered, "I suppose the one who had the larger debt canceled." Jesus told him, "You have answered correctly." read more.
Then, turning to the woman, he told Simon, "Do you see this woman? I came into your house. You didn't give me any water for my feet, but this woman has washed my feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. You didn't give me a kiss, but this woman, from the moment I came in, has not stopped kissing my feet. You didn't anoint my head with oil, but this woman has anointed my feet with perfume. So I'm telling you that her sins, as many as they are, have been forgiven, and that's why she has shown such great love. But the one to whom little is forgiven loves little."


"I am the true vine, and my Father is the vintner. He cuts off every branch that does not produce fruit in me, and he cuts back every branch that does produce fruit, so that it might produce more fruit. You are already clean because of what I've spoken to you. read more.
"Abide in me, and I will abide in you. Just as the branch cannot produce fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. The one who abides in me while I abide in him produces much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing.


He was also saying, "The kingdom of God is like a man who scatters seeds on the ground. He sleeps and gets up night and day while the seeds sprout and grow, although he doesn't know how the ground produces grain by itself first the stalk, then the head, then the full grain in the head. read more.
But when the grain is ripe, he immediately starts cutting with his sickle because the harvest time has come."


"At that time, the kingdom from heaven will be comparable to ten bridesmaids who took their oil lamps and went out to meet the groom. Now five of them were foolish, and five were wise, because when the foolish ones took their lamps, they didn't take any oil with them. read more.
But the wise ones took flasks of oil with their lamps. Since the groom was late, all of them became sleepy and lay down. But at midnight there came a shout: "The groom is here! Come out to meet him!' Then all the bridesmaids woke up and got their lamps ready. "But the foolish ones told the wise, "Give us some of your oil, because our lamps are going out!' "But the wise ones replied, "No! There will never be enough for us and for you. You'd better go to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.' "While they were away buying it, the groom arrived. Those who were ready went with him into the wedding banquet, and the door was closed. Later, the other bridesmaids arrived and said, "Lord, lord, open up for us!' "But he replied, "I tell all of you with certainty, I don't know you!' So keep on watching, because you don't know the day or the hour."


Jesus told his disciples a parable about their need to pray all the time and never give up. He said, "In a city there was a judge who didn't fear God or respect people. In that city there was also a widow who kept coming to him and saying, "Grant me justice against my adversary.' read more.
For a while the judge refused. But later, he told himself, "I don't fear God or respect people, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will grant her justice. Otherwise, she will keep coming and wear me out.'" Then the Lord added, "Listen to what the unrighteous judge says. Won't God grant his chosen people justice when they cry out to him day and night? Is he slow to help them? I tell you, he will give them justice quickly. But when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?"


Then he told them, "Suppose one of you has a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say to him, "Friend, let me borrow three loaves of bread. A friend of mine on a trip has dropped in on me, and I don't have anything to serve him.' Suppose he answers from inside, "Stop bothering me! The door is already locked, and my children are here with us in the bedroom. I can't get up and give you anything!' read more.
I tell you, even though that man doesn't want to get up and give him anything because he is his friend, he will get up and give him whatever he needs because of his persistence.


Then Jesus told them this parable: "A man had a fig tree that had been planted in his vineyard. He went to look for fruit on it but didn't find any. So he told the gardener, "Look here! For three years I've been coming to look for fruit on this tree but I haven't found any. Cut it down! Why should it waste the soil?' But the gardener replied, "Sir, leave it alone for one more year, until I dig around it and fertilize it. read more.
Maybe next year it will bear fruit. If not, then cut it down.'"


Now Jesus was saying to the disciples, "A rich man had a servant manager who was accused of wasting his assets. So he called for him and asked him, "What's this I hear about you? You can't be my manager any longer. Now give me a report about your management!' "Then the servant manager told himself, "What should I do? My master is taking my position away from me. I'm not strong enough to plow, and I'm ashamed to beg. read more.
I know what I'll do so that people will welcome me into their homes when I'm dismissed from my job.' "So he called for each of his master's debtors. He asked the first, "How much do you owe my master?' The man replied, "A hundred jars of olive oil.' The manager told him, "Get your bill. Sit down quickly and write "50."' Then he asked another debtor, "How much do you owe?' The man replied, "A hundred containers of wheat.' The manager told him, "Get your bill and write "80."' The master praised the dishonest servant manager for being so clever, because worldly people are more clever than enlightened people in dealing with their own. "I'm telling you, make friends for yourselves by means of unrighteous wealth, so that when it fails, they will welcome you into eternal homes.


"The kingdom from heaven is like treasure hidden in a field that a man found and hid. In his excitement he went and sold everything he had and bought that field."


But King Jehoash of Israel sent this message to King Amaziah of Judah: "The thorn bush in Lebanon sent this message to the cedar of Lebanon: "Give your daughter to my son in marriage.' But just then a wild beast from Lebanon wandered by and trampled down the thorn bush.

You will know them by their fruit. Grapes aren't gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles, are they?

But King Joash of Israel replied to King Amaziah of Judah, "There once was a thorn bush in Lebanon that sent an invitation to the cedar of Lebanon that read "Give your daughter to my son in marriage.' Right about then, a wild animal in Lebanon passed by and trampled the thorn bush.


You uprooted a vine from Egypt, and drove out nations to transplant it. You cleared the ground so that its roots grew and filled the land. Mountains were covered by its shadows, and the mighty cedars by its branches. read more.
Its branches spread out to the Mediterranean Sea and its shoots to the Euphrates River. Why did you break down its walls so that those who pass by pluck its fruits? Wild boars of the forest gnaw at it, and creatures of the field feed on it. God of the Heavenly Armies, return! Look down from heaven and see. Show care toward this vine.

It flourished and became a low, spreading vine. Its branches turned toward him, and its roots spread under him to become a vine that put out shoots and spread out its branches. """All of a sudden, there was another eagle with gigantic wings and thick plumage. The vine stretched its roots hungrily toward him and spread its branches out to him in order to be watered on the terraces where it was planted. It was transplanted into good soil near abundant water, and it produced branches and bore fruit, becoming a magnificent vine."' read more.
"Tell them, "This is what the Lord GOD says, "Will it prosper? Won't he pull up its roots, and strip it bare so all its fresh foliage dries up? It won't be by great strength or by a great army that it will be uprooted. Look! Because it's a transplanted vine, won't it wither when the east wind hits it? It will surely wither in the terraces where it had started to sprout."'"

"Your mother was like a vine entwining a pomegranate, planted by water, full of fruit, and full of branches because it had been watered generously. Strong were its boughs, suitable for use in the scepter of a ruler. It reached to the clouds, noticeable because of its height and its abundant branches. Yet in anger it was uprooted and cast down to the earth. An east wind desiccated its fruit; its strong branches broke off and withered, and a fire consumed them. read more.
Now it is planted in the desert, in a dry and thirsty land! Fire had burned through its branches, consuming its shoots and fruits. No strong branches remain in it, and there is no scepter to rule!' "This is a lamentation, and it is to be used in mourning."


"Listen to another parable. There was a landowner who planted a vineyard, put a wall around it, dug a wine press in it, and built a watchtower. Then he leased it to tenant farmers and went abroad. When harvest time approached, he sent his servants to the tenant farmers to collect his produce. But the farmers took his servants and beat one, killed another, and attacked another with stones. read more.
Again, he sent other servants to them, a greater number than the first, but the tenant farmers treated them the same way. Finally, he sent his son to them, thinking, "They will respect my son.' But when the tenant farmers saw his son, they told one another, "This is the heir. Come on, let's kill him and get his inheritance!' So they grabbed him, threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him. Now when the owner of the vineyard returns, what will he do to those farmers?" They told him, "He will put those horrible men to a horrible death. Then he will lease the vineyard to other farmers who will give him his produce at harvest time."

Many shepherds will destroy my vineyard. They'll trample down my portion. They'll turn my pleasant portion into a desolate desert.

"The kingdom from heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire workers for his vineyard. After agreeing to pay the workers one denarius a day, he sent them into his vineyard. When he went out about nine o'clock, he saw others standing in the marketplace without work. read more.
He told them, "You go into the vineyard, too, and I will pay you whatever is right.' So off they went. He went out again about noon and about three o'clock and did the same thing. About five o'clock he went out and found some others standing around. He asked them, "Why are you standing here all day long without work?' They told him, "Because no one has hired us.' He told them, "You go into the vineyard as well.' "When evening came, the owner of the vineyard told his manager, "Call the workers and give them their wages, beginning with the last and ending with the first.' Those who were hired at five o'clock came, and each received a denarius. "When the first came, they thought they would receive more, but each received a denarius as well. When they received it, they began to complain to the landowner, "These last fellows worked only one hour, but you paid them the same as us, and we've been working all day, enduring the scorching heat!' "But he told one of them, "Friend, I'm not treating you unfairly. You did agree with me for a denarius, didn't you? Take what is yours and go. I want to give this last man as much as I gave you. I am allowed to do what I want with my own money, am I not? Or are you envious because I'm generous?' "In the same way, the last will be first, and the first will be last, because many are called, but few are chosen."

Then Jesus told them this parable: "A man had a fig tree that had been planted in his vineyard. He went to look for fruit on it but didn't find any. So he told the gardener, "Look here! For three years I've been coming to look for fruit on this tree but I haven't found any. Cut it down! Why should it waste the soil?' But the gardener replied, "Sir, leave it alone for one more year, until I dig around it and fertilize it. read more.
Maybe next year it will bear fruit. If not, then cut it down.'"

I will sing for my beloved my love-song concerning his vineyard: "The one I love had a vineyard on a very fertile hill. He plowed its land and cleared it of stones. Then he planted it with the choicest vines, built a watchtower in the middle of it, and dug a wine vat in it; He expected it to produce good grapes, but it produced only wild ones." "So now, you inhabitants of Jerusalem and men of Judah, judge, won't you please, between me and my vineyard. read more.
What more could I do in my vineyard, that I haven't already done? When I expected it to produce good grapes, why did it yield wild ones? "Now, let me tell you, won't you please, what I'm going to do to my vineyard. "I'm going to take away its protective hedge, and it will be devoured; I'll break down its wall, and it will be trampled. I'll make it a wasteland, and it won't be pruned or cultivated. Instead, briers and thorns will grow up. I'll also issue commands to the clouds, that they drop no rain upon it." For the vineyard of the LORD of the Heavenly Armies is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah are the garden in which he delights. He looked for justice, but saw only bloodshed; he searched for righteousness, but heard only an outcry!

"But what do you think? A man had two sons. He went to the first and said, "Son, go and work in the vineyard today.' His son replied, "I don't want to,' but later he changed his mind and went. Then the father went to the other son and told him the same thing. He replied, "I will, sir,' but he didn't go. read more.
Which of the two did the father's will?" They answered, "The first one."

At that time, "A fermenting vineyard sing about it! I, the LORD, watch over it And I water it continuously. I guard it night and day so no one can harm it.


Then he asked another debtor, "How much do you owe?' The man replied, "A hundred containers of wheat.' The manager told him, "Get your bill and write "80."'

While people were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat and went away.


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