A Parable is the same as a Simile. It is one of the Language teaching tools that CHRIST used to illustrate a point when HE taught HIS Disciples, HIS Apostles, HIS followers, and the Curious (the Multitudes) who Listened to HIM.
It is used to compare to or against; to set together, or one thing with another. It is a Allegorical Relation or Representation of something Real in Life or Nature, from which a Moral is drawn for Instruction.
CHRIST JESUS used the Subjects, Items, Situations of LIFE, Customs and other things that were Common to the people and the Time in which they Lived in order to Convey deeper SPIRITUAL meanings to Moral Lessons and to explain the SPIRITUAL PRINCIPLES of the KINGDOM of GOD/The KINGDOM of HEAVEN.
A brief study of the Time (Era), the Culture and Customs will be included in each article to help us to understand the Backdrop that CHRIST used as HIS Canvass when HE painted HIS Word Pictures (Parables).
The Parables become powerful engines of thought which provoke PRACTICAL Understanding for the MIND and SPIRITUAL Edification for the SOUL. The Parables of JESUS CHRIST addressed all Spheres of Life and is Relative to all Time – Past, Present and Future.
The Parables in the Canonical Gospels are listed as they are found by each book. Mark has only one peculiar to this book, namely:
- the Seed Growing in Secret (Mark 4:26), and he gives only three others that are found also in Matthew and Luke, namely:
- the Sower,
- the Mustard Seed, and
- the Wicked Husbandman;
so that the bulk of the Parables are found in the First and the Third Gospels. Two are common to Matthew and Luke, namely:
- the Leaven (Matthew 13:33; Luke 13:21) and
- the Lost Sheep (Matthew 18:12; Luke 15:3).
Of the remaining Parables, 18 are found only in Luke and 10 only in Matthew. Luke’s 18 include some of the finest, namely:
- the Two Debtors,
- the Good Samaritan,
- the Friend at Midnight,
- the Rich Fool,
- the Watchful Servants,
- the Barren Fig Tree,
- the Chief Seats,
- the Great Supper,
- the Rash Builder,
- the Rash King,
- the Lost Coin,
- the Lost Son,
- the Unrighteous Steward,
- the Rich Man and Lazarus,
- the Unprofitable Servants,
- the Unrighteous Judge,
- the Pharisee and Publican,
- and the Pounds.
The 10 peculiar to Matthew are:
- the Tares,
- the Hidden Treasure,
- the Pearl of Great Price,
- the Draw Net,
- the Unmerciful Servant,
- the Laborers in the Vineyard,
- the Two Sons,
- the Marriage of the King’s Son,
- the Ten Virgins,
- and the Talents.
There is some uncertainty as to the exact number of Parables we have from JESUS CHRIST, as the Marriage of the King’s Son is sometimes regarded as a different recension of the Great Supper, and the Talents of the Pounds. I have seen articles that list up to seventy parables. I will continue research to discover all I can find through the Scriptures.