Parables about the Kingdom
42 total verses: Luke 13:1-21; John 10:22-42
Brief description of action taking place or point being made
176. Fate of Galileans reported to Jesus in Luke 13:1-5
177. Parable of the fig tree in Luke 13:6-9
178. Woman healed on the Sabbath in Luke 13:10-13
179. Synagogue official opposes Jesus in Luke 13:14-17
180. Parables of mustard seed and leaven in Luke 13:18-21
181. Feast of Dedication in the temple in John 10:22-23
182. Jews confront Christ in John 10:24-39
183. Jesus goes to Aenon near Salim in John 10:40-42
1. What is your favorite verse or set of verses? Why?
2. Did you learn anything from the reading or find anything particularly cool? What?
3. Was there anything unclear in the passage that you have questions about? What are they?
Specific questions on this passage
After Completing the Bible Reading
Broader outline of each section of passage
Luke 13:1-5. Jesus dispels a wrong way of thinking that if people die tragically, it is because they were bad sinners. Jesus more or less tells those raising the issue that all will die. But better to turn to Jesus and have eternal life.
Luke 13:6-9. This is a parable about a fig tree that did not bear fruit. The master wanted to cut it down, but the vinedresser wanted to give it another year to bear fruit. But if it continued not to bear fruit, then they would cut it down.
Luke 13:10-13. A woman was crippled with a spirit that cause her to be bent over and unable to straighten. Jesus did not even directly cast out the spirit, but simply told the woman she was free from her disability.
Luke 13:14-17. Jesus had healed the woman in the synagogue on the Sabbath, and the synagogue ruler objected to healing being done on the Sabbath. But Jesus replied that even religious people take care of their livestock on the Sabbath, certainly a person ought to be able to be healed.
Luke 13:18-21. Jesus told parables about what the kingdom of God was like, one about a mustard seed growing into a tree, another about leaven working itself through the entire flour. Both of these seem to imply that once the Kingdom gets even a little bit in a person, it can grow and grow over time to be something very significant.
John 10:22-23. Jesus was walking through the Temple at the Feast of Dedication, which was in winter.
John 10:24-39. Jesus is confronted by unbelieving religious leaders about whether he is the Christ. Jesus told them he was, but the reason they didn’t believe was because they were not his sheep. Then he went on to say that he and God were one, that is, Jesus was claiming to be God. This angered them, and they picked up stones to stone him to death. Jesus told them that clearly he was doing the works of God, and they should believe because of that.
John 10:40-42. After the incident in the Temple, Jesus left Jerusalem and went across the Jordan to where John the Baptist had been baptizing originally. And the people listened to Jesus and believed him.
My favorite passage and other random thoughts
There aren’t any easy sound bites to pick in these verses, so I’ll pick Luke 13:7-9 “And he said to the vinedresser, ‘Look, for three years now I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and I find none. Cut it down. Why should it use up the ground?’ And he answered him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and put on manure. Then if it should bear fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down'” (ESV). The reason I like this is that I think I finally understood it a few years ago. I had thought that it was talking about removing from the Kingdom of God people who do not bear fruit. But I decided that what it really means is that if a person’s faith doesn’t result in fruit being born in a person’s life, even after trying to strengthen the faith with manure, then it is time to get rid of that faith and try again with something new that might bear fruit. I like that thought, because I see that many people have a faith that doesn’t seem to bear good fruit in their lives. It is pleasant to think that they might be able to re-boot and develop a faith that is truer and more life-giving.