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RE coursework - parables

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Introduction

RE COURSEWORK BIBLICAL DAVID BURNS Year 12 CONTENTS Page Introduction 3 What is a parable? 4 How did Jesus present his teachings through parables? 5 The meaning and relevance of parables to the belief and life of Christians today 7 These parables are still relevant today? 9 Conclusion 10 Bibliography 11 Parables (Part A) Introduction This coursework will look at some of the parables from Luke's gospel and how Jesus used this method of teaching. I will consider why he used parables and how they are different from other stories. I will look at Jesus teaching through some parables which will include The Good Samaritan, The Lost Son and The Rich Man and Lazarus. I will examine what message he was putting across to the people and how he did this through using parables. Then I will discuss what effect and significance they have on the belief and life of Christians now. In doing this I will look at how these teachings can influence people's lives and work and how they can help us learn how to deal with one another. Then I will discuss whether these teachings are relevant today. Part A (i) What is a parable? A "parable" is a simple story with a single meaning to it compared to other stories which may be difficult to understand and may have many meanings.. The word parable came from the Greek word "parabole" which means a comparison or an analogy of things. The dictionary definition of the word parable is "narrative of imagined events used to typify moral or spiritual relations".1 It is also referred to as "a short ...read more.

Middle

The rich man's sin was that he didn't care. His character was used to represent people who refused to listen to the teachings of the scriptures and to show what would happen to them. (Part B) The meaning and relevance of parables to the belief and life of Christians today The Good Samaritan Through the parable of the Good Samaritan Jesus was showing us how we should treat others. This is very important for Christians today as we see many people of different races and religions dislike one another simply because they are from a particular country or have different religious beliefs. Jesus showed us how the Samaritan showed great kindness to the injured man even though others had passed him by. He used the parable to teach us to show kindness to others regardless of their race or religion. In this part of the world the two main religions are Roman Catholic and Protestant and people on both sides of the community often have a deep hatred for each other. However, if they practised true Christianity they should have love for each other. This parable clearly shows us how important it is to show kindness to others and how relevant it is today. We can do this in many ways, for example many Christians work in voluntary organisations like The Samaritans, Oxfam Shop etc. In this way they are showing kindness by giving of their time to help others regardless of their religion as they would often have no idea of the religious background of a customer in a shop or a person on the telephone asking for help or advice. ...read more.

Conclusion

This type of teaching method (ie illustrations) is also used in business and industry to assist people understand how to use equipment, or perform tasks that may be alien to them. For example a person may be used operating an electric sewing machine by means of a foot pedal this could be used as an illustration to help the person understand the use of an accelerator in a car. This further emphasises the relevance of parables as they are still being used today as an effective method of teaching showing that Jesus was and is a great teacher. Another way that people are taught right and wrong particularly from a very young age is by means of fables which although they are seen as stories and not based on the bible or its teachings still have many similarities to the parables used by Jesus. Similarly Jesus used parables to teach people right and wrong, for example, the Rich Man and Lazarus was used to show people they should care for others and not store up riches on earth. In conclusion no one today would argue against the benefits from teaching such things as children's fables nor would they argue that the use of illustrations in the modern work place is out of date, so why discard parables because they are from the scriptures. Therefore the parables of the bible are as relevant today as they were 2000 years ago because it is the essence of the message which is important not the minute detail which obviously has more relevance to ancient people. ...read more.

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