Bible Walks & Talks: Matthew 13

Posted 5/27/22


SUGGESTED READING: Matthew 13:1-29, Part One

EDITOR’S NOTE: In this column Annette Dammer examines the New Testament one chapter at a time. If you’d like to join …

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Bible Walks & Talks: Matthew 13



SUGGESTED READING: Matthew 13:1-29, Part One

EDITOR’S NOTE: In this column Annette Dammer examines the New Testament one chapter at a time. If you’d like to join Dammer’s fellowship group, email her at with BIBLE in the subject line.

OK, I give up!  It is impossible to thoroughly discuss some chapters of the Bible in a single newspaper column. Not without deleting key points that Jesus wants to make. From now on, when a chapter is extra-meaty, we will split it into two columns.

Matthew 13 is one of those chapters. So let’s walk on with Part One …

This chapter is mostly about Jesus’ parables. A parable is a way to show a principle or moral through a story. Jesus uses nature and human stories to do this.

The first parable here is The Parable of the Sower. A farmer scatters his seed. Some falls on the path — but birds snatch it. Other seed falls on the rocks and spring up quickly, then wither. Different seeds fall in the thorns and the thorny plants soon smother them. Finally, some seed falls on good soil and produces a crop — 100, 60 or 30 times what is sown. Jesus wants us to listen and says, “Whoever has ears, let them hear.” (Matthew 13:3-9)

The disciples want to know why Christ speaks in parables. He replies, “Because the knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them … Though seeing, they do not see; though hearing, they do not hear or understand.” (Matthew 13:10-13)

This fulfills Isaiah’s prophecy: “You will be ever hearing but never understanding.” (Matthew 13:14-15)

But the disciples, and perhaps we, are blessed to have eyes that see and ears that hear. Jesus goes on, “For truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.” We are blessed indeed … (Matthew 13:16-17)

Next, Jesus explains The Parable of the Sower. The seed on the path is anyone who hears the kingdom’s message and doesn’t understand, so satan snatches it. The seed on rocky ground is one who “hears the word and at once receives it with joy. But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away.” (Matthew 13:18-21)

The seeds in the thorns are those who hear the word, but life’s worries and wealth’s deceit “choke the word, making it unfruitful.” But the seeds on good soil represent those who hear AND understand the word. They produce “a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.” (Matthew 13:22-23)

Next is Jesus’ Parable of the Weeds. He says the kingdom of heaven is like a man who sows wheat in his field. But while all are asleep, the enemy comes and sows weeds in the field. When the wheat sprouts, the weeds pop up, as well. (Matthew 13:24-26)

The owner knows that the enemy did this and wants the weeds left until harvest.  Then he’ll tell the harvesters, “First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.” (Matthew 13:27-29)

The weeds look so big and healthy. But appearances can be deceiving …

More next week.

Copyright © 2022 by A. Dammer

Scripture Notations taken from The Holy Bible, New International Version ®, NIV ® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. ® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.


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