The Mustard Seed parable is commonly interpreted as an illustration of church growth. However, rightly dividing the word of truth shows a sobering reality.
The Bible, in both parables and prophecies, interprets itself and remains consistent in its use of symbols. We cannot arbitrarily attach meaning to symbols.
Matthew 13 contains more parables than any other chapter in the Gospels. They are related in theme and organized to teach Christians specific lessons.
The 'kingdom of heaven' is commonly interpreted to describe the church, but in the first four parables of Matthew 13, it has a clearer application: Israel.
Most commentators see this parable as a positive message of the growth of the church. However, deeper study shows that they have it exactly backward!
In the Parables of the Wheat and the Tares, the Mustard Seed, and the Leaven, Jesus was speaking to the physical nation, which the parables clearly reflect.
In Matthew 13, the hidden treasure the man finds provides the spiritual solution to the leaven - corruption - the woman hides in the three measures of meal.
The Kingdom of God or of Heaven has past, present, and future aspects. The Kingdom parables primarily provide instruction for the present aspect.
Jesus' parables of the Pearl of Great Price, the Dragnet, and the Householder resolve the problems raised in their corresponding earlier parables.
God calls Israel a seed of highest quality, but she turned into a degenerate vine, bearing bitter fruit, rejecting God and relying on her own resources.
Dominion theology holds that the church's responsibility is to spread God's Kingdom around the world, but it misunderstands the Parable of Leaven.
Contrary to Dominion Theology, the Parables of the Mustard Seed and Leaven are not about the church but describe the history and condition of Israel.
If we ask God for protection from demonic influence, we cannot sit back passively; Satan always counterattacks. Evil must be displaced with good.
Using stock car, computer, and biotechnology jargon, Richard Ritenbaugh illustrates how ignorant most of us feel in the wake of the exponential explosion of knowledge. Likewise, the Bible, even though widely published and distributed, has remained just as mysterious for most people. Biblical truth cannot be discerned by human …