The parable of the workers in the vineyard – the last will be first and the first will be last (Matthew 20:1 – 20:16).

After telling the disciples how difficult it is for a rich person to enter heaven, Jesus said, “Many who are first will be last and many who are last will be first.” To explain, he then told them a parable about workers in a vineyard. Jesus said, “The kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out in the early morning to hire workers for his vineyard. He agreed to pay them a denarius for a day’s work and sent them into the field. Later, about 9:00 in the morning, he went out and saw others standing in the marketplace with no work. He told them, “Go and work in my vineyard and I will pay you whatever is right.” So they went. He went out again around noon

True defilement – it’s not what goes into the mouth that matters, but what comes out (Matthew 14:34 – 15:20).

After the miracle of walking across the water, Jesus crossed over with the disciples and landed at Gennesaret. When people recognized him, word spread throughout the surrounding country. People brought all of their sick to Jesus and begged him to let them merely touch the edge of his cloak. When the did, they were healed. Some Pharisees came to Jesus from Jerusalem and asked, “Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? Why don’t they wash their hands before they eat?” Jesus replied, “Why do you break the commands of God for the sake of your tradition? God said, Honor your father and mother and anyone who curses their father or mother should be put to death. But you say that if anyone declares that if

The parables of weeds, the mustard seed, the yeast, and the treasure (Matthew 13:24 – 13:52)

After Jesus explained why he used parables to present his New Testament message, he presented another parable to the disciples. “The kingdom of heaven is like a person who sowed good seed in his field. While everyone was sleeping, an enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat. When the plants sprouted and bore grain, the weeds also appeared. So the slaves of the owner came and said to him, ‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Then where did the weeds come from?’ The owner said, ‘An enemy has done this.’ So the slaves replied, ‘Do you want us to go and gather the weeds?’ But he said, ‘No, since pulling up the weeds might uproot the wheat with them. Let both grow

The parable of the sower and why Jesus used parables – Christian development depends on character. (Matthew 13:1 – 13:23)

After chastising the Pharisees because they asked for a sign, Jesus went out of the house and sat by the lake. Large crowds gathered around him, so he got into a boat while the people stood on the shore. He told them many things in parables, including the parable of the sower. A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path and the birds came and ate it. Some fell in rocky places where there was not much soil. The plants sprang quickly but because the soil was shallow, when the sun came up the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. Other seed fell among thorns which grew up and choked